You Have Pinterest…I Have a Pen

And a glue stick.

(By the way, if you don’t read the titles to some of my posts, you won’t “get” the first line of my post. Did that make sense? Now…go back and read my title, all you people still scratching your heads.)

I’ve said before that I don’t “do” Pinterest.

And I don’t.


I don’t have a Pinterest account. I’ve never “pinned” anything. And you can’t make me.

In fact, when I google something and the result lands me someone’s Pinterest page or repin, I will go out of my way to avoid clicking on the Pinterest logo to get to what I want to see. I’ll go fourteen ways around the sun to get to the original poster’s site with the picture or the article.

I know. That’s totally extreme. It’s not Pinterest’s fault.

I just…can’t…handle…it.

I am all for new recipes involving figs and venison and trying to be crafty and weave my own pillows with the loom I bought on someone’s Etsy site and create decorative banners for any and all holidays, including but not limited to Groundhog’s Day and Confederate Memorial Day. (That is a real holiday, by the way. My friend gets off work for this holiday every year. We used to celebrate with fireworks and fried chicken and mashed potatoes. I’m not making this up.)

Part of it is the pressure of having a public Pinterest board where people can I ask if I did that or made that or sent off for the PDF instructions for how to create that garden lattice for the herbs I planted last spring.

I want to create. And bake. And paint. And sew…and sow. (Did you see what I did there?)

And sometimes I do. Sometimes I’ll post my twitpics or upload to Facebook my random felt projects or frosted cookies or paper bags tied with raffia and pre-printed tags.

(Side note: I do NOT use Instagram, though. It’s another one of those “principle” things of mine. And if you can’t be my friend after you’ve read this, it’s okay. I understand.)

But for all my ranting on how I don’t use Pinterest, I must also tell you…I was “pinteresting” before pinteresting was cool.

I’ve always loved journals. And blank pages. And stationery. And pens and pencils and markers. And scissors and stickers.

I never got into the whole “scrapbooking” thing, though. It’s too organized and takes thought and time and preparation. And I’m the kind of person that would stress if I didn’t have my pictures centered to the millimeter on the page and then I’d feel like the whole thing sucked and I couldn’t do anything right and I’d shove it under the bed and pretend I never started the stupid thing to begin with.

At least, I’m pretty sure that’s how it would go.

My whole approach to “pinning” or “recording memories” and “life” is through…writing it down. Or ripping the picture from the magazine and shoving it in a book somewhere or leaving it on the fridge like I did that picture of that pair shoes I wanted a few years ago hoping the hubs would notice and purchase a knock off pair at Payless for me.

Yes, I’ll print out those recipes calling for 18 pounds of butter. And I will rip out that magazine ad with the picture of the towels folded the way I’ve never had time to fold mine…also they were in varying shades of reds and yellows and oranges that it looked like my favorite colors in a Skittles bag and I wanted to eat them. Something about it just “spoke” to me, I guess. And I will jot down that quote that I loved from that book that I read that one time. (Read The Hobbit. If you just go see the movie, you’re missing out. Trust me. And I haven’t seen the movie.)

I think that it’s that I need something tangible. Something physical to look at and hold. Not just an internet bulletin board where all my virtual ideas end up. I guess I feel like if it’s not something that I can reach out and physically grab onto, then it seems less attainable that I would actually MAKE it.

So for all my printing and ripping and scribbling out notes and creating meal charts that get shoved in my purse, I’m not all that different from you Pinterest people. I just like mine in “grabbable” form.

And for all you “grabbable” form wanna-be crafters/chefs/writers like myself, I have discovered these things called “Smash books”.

Now, this may be an old concept. I have no idea. I’m not really up on the most current things…I’m still singing Call Me Maybe and buying frosted lip gloss.

Here’s the concept, and “Smash” is actually a branded name, you buy one of their blank “journals”. Or you get cheapie like me and just buy a regular old notebook. And then, you just “smash” stuff in it.

How freaking cool is that?!

Totally genius concept if you ask me. And no, I’m not being paid by these “Smash” people. I’m just giving them mad props for giving the people who want to be creative and record life and keep things random, inspiring, or odd a license to do so WITH NO RULES! No LINES TO COLOR IN (totally being all metaphoric here), No more “OH CRAP! I DIDN”T LEAVE ENOUGH ROOM FOR THAT RANDOM RECIPE I’LL MORE THAN LIKELY MAKE ONLY ONCE TO TRY AND IMPRESS A GROUP OF PEOPLE I HARDLY KNOW” freak-out moments. (That’s probably a freak out moment only relative to me…)

The whole idea is that you just “smash” it in there. No rules. No more “this section is for the outfit ideas that I’ll never be able to fit in my budget and wouldn’t look right with these hips anyway”. I put one thing on one page and another on another and so on and so forth till my creative outlet just can’t take it any more.

But these “Smash” peeps have it figured out. They sell accessories…everything from tabs (so you CAN label your sections if you want) to pens with the dern glue stick already built in!

Who ARE these people?!

I don’t know but here’s their web site.

And here’s mine so far.

It’s not fab and funky and all glitzy glam. And I won’t even try and give myself a pass by saying I just started yesterday and really I’ve been focused on writing down gems of literary goodness that I want to remember. Like from Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, Jason Mraz.

No seriously. Jason Mraz is a wordplay genius.

And he’s also the only person i know who can really pull off the straw fedora. 

So I guess you could say that I’m really not as anti-Pinterest as I originally said I was. I just need to be able to SEE what I want to achieve. I need to physically be able to write down the words that move my soul. I’m not the person who can just click and high light and pin and re-pin from the text I’m reading. I want a good pen and a piece of paper.

Confession: when I was in junior high and high school, before you could just google up the words to that song you liked on the radio, I would use a tape recorder and wait for hours on end to capture the song. Then I would wear out the pause button by stopping it to write down every word of every line.

And then I would get all ethereal and philosophical and be all, “Isn’t this beautiful? Did you LISTEN to what it’s SAYING?!”

I know. I’m a total nerd.

I’m a word nerd.

That’s why this post’s word count is already over 1300. (If you read it all, I love you. And you probably need to find a hobby if you had time to read it all in one sitting.)

John Lennon once said,

When you’re drowning, you don’t think, I would be incredibly pleased if someone would notice I’m drowning and come rescue me.

You just scream.

If I may add to Mr. Lennon, words…art…your Pinterest project…doesn’t have to be perfect or poetic. It just needs to communicate what you feel inside.

So don’t let the Pinterest guidelines stop you if they intimidate you like they do me. Grab your glue stick and your pen and rip out something cool from a magazine.

“Smash” life and create and write and craft away, friends!

Go ahead and send me your Pinterest link.

And I’ll show you my “Smash” journal.

And we’ll be crafty-baker-poet friends forevermore!



  1. Terri says

    The first thing that I thought of were slam books that people passed around at school. Do you remember those? Smash books seem much nicer :)

  2. says

    Smash books….so cool! Except I would never remember to actually smash the item in the book and write anything with it. And I agree Pinterest is overwhelming, but it’s where I dream of having my June Cleaver house, while living in the reality I’ll probably always be more like Lucy with you. :-)

  3. Elisabeth says

    Great post Annette! I too used to wait for hours to record a song on the radio, but I would listen to the song over and over again till I knew the words by heart!
    I could sit and read your blog all day, you really have a way with words! Happy New Year!