Monday, August 11, 2014

The Downtown STL Cakes

So one Wednesday in July, the kids and I drove downtown to see how many of the 35+ STL 250 Birthday Cakes we could see.
I had a list of where the cakes were and we made it to ten.
Ultimately not as many as I would have liked, but truthfully still pretty good considering it was a very hot and humid day.
Plus, we made plans to meet my friend Kelly and her two boys and their cousin for lunch.
So here are the cakes as we found them in order. And Evan is actually in a few of these photos!
1. The Campbell House Museum - This is a house that was built in 1851 and has some interesting history. The house is also supposed to be "haunted". Evan's class went on a tour of the house when he was in fifth grade as part of their downtown architectural walking tour. So he wanted to get a photo with this cake. We liked it's brick design!

2. Downtown Central Library - Personally this is one of my favorite cakes. You can't go wrong with books!

3. The Peabody Opera House - Formerly known as Kiel Opera House, it sat around empty for years and years. Thankfully it was renovated and is open once again. The kids and I saw "The Grinch Who Stole Christmas" here a few years back and really enjoyed it.
4. Soldier's Memorial - I didn't even know this one existed really. Evan was the one who actually noticed it and yelled "Mom, there's a cake!". I was actually trying to get to Christ Church Cathedral (which we never even made it to). So I stopped for him.
5. The Wainwright Building - was a must see on Evan's list! It is pretty significant as far as architecture goes here in St. Louis and was designed by Frank Lloyd Wright's mentor.

6. Kiener Plaza - was originally going to be part of what was known as the "Gateway Mall" similar to what you see in Washington DC. But the full plan unfortunately did not come to be. Still there is a nice stretch of green space that includes Kiener plaza and the City Garden that runs back a few blocks to the Civil Court building. And as you can see it has a great view of the Old Courthouse and Arch.

7. The Old Courthouse - Yay! I was able to get on this one. A very nice guard offered to take a photo of the three of us. :)

The next two aren't super exciting, but we passed them and decided to get photos.

8. The Drury Inn at the Arch
9. The Ballpark Hilton
10. Old Post Office - After meeting up with my friend Kelly, we were able to see one last cake that we passed as we were walking to lunch. For some reason Erin didn't want to be in the photo with all of the boys.
She wanted her own! :)

So ten cakes down in one day. Not too bad!
There were a few we were close to, but one way streets and traffic deterred us from stopping.
We've already seen the cakes at Scottrade center and Busch Stadium, too.
And I would love to go down to the Arch eventually.
Otherwise, I would say we saw enough downtown.

Also, just a reminder that the "Mixed Tape" challenge at Paper Issues 
is still going on! If you have any projects featuring washi or other tapes, music of any kind, mixing up products or brands or "mixing" in the kitchen, please link up *Here* for a chance to win a great prize from Hazel & Ruby!

Ok. So from this point until school starts on the 25th, I am thinking another blog break is in order.
We have a lot going on in the next two weeks and blogging is just not going to be a priority. And probably not scrapbooking either.
So see you after school begins!

Wednesday, August 6, 2014


My little blog break last week was due to the fact that the kids and I decided to drive down to Joplin so we could hang out with Mike during his work week there.
Erin's birthday was on Thursday and she really wanted to be able to see him on that day! Not just talk on FaceTime.
So the kids and I piled in the car on Monday and headed down.
Mike was nice enough to bring our bikes down in his truck the day before so we could go bike riding while he was at work.
We were able to hang out at the pool there a few days as well.
And get our back to school supply shopping done.
 Finally turned seven on the 31st!

One of the things she wanted to do on her birthday was go to the mall and get a new pair of shoes. "High heels". I had been dragging my feet on that one. And I was actually looking at cute little flats, when I turned around and saw her putting these on. They look a lot like tap shoes with square heels except the heel, strap and bottom are a sparkly silver which you can't really see in the photo. As I watched her walk in them, I knew she would be ok. So we got them. And of course, she had to wear them right away.
And I will also say this...she walks a heck of a lot better in heels than I do!
Later that night we went to a local favorite pizza place for dinner. I like this picture of Erin and Mike getting a selfie on her new ipod touch.
We also picked up cupcakes so we could sing "Happy Birthday" down by the pool.
She said it was one of the best birthdays ever! :)

When we arrived home on Friday, Mike and Evan headed down to the Cardinals ballgame that night, and I took Erin to Barnes and Noble. They had a "Frozen" night for kids...
and she wanted to wear her new Elsa costume, new shoes and bring her new Olaf doll.
It was super chaotic there, so we just looked at books and then went to get her birthday treat in the cafe. That was enough for us. It had been a long week!

Now we are home and getting back to routine. But we had a great time!

Monday, August 4, 2014

Paper Issues: Mix Tape!

Ok, I am back and have so much to talk about over the next week so I will be blogging a little more. But today, I have a design team layout to share for Paper Issues.

The theme this issue is Mix Tapes which can also include a variety of ideas such as:

*Music of course (mix tapes, current favorites or playlists, favorite bands, song lyrics etc...)
*Mixing up product brands or type on a project
*Washi or other tapes
*Reminiscing about music media from the past (cassettes, records, 8 tracks)
*Mixing it up in the kitchen

and more. There are so many possibilities!

So remember back in April when I said I wanted to create a layout from *this post* about The National? Well I did it!
The journaling is a condensed version of my blog post. And since the it mainly focused on my top ten favorite songs at the time, I wanted to find a fun way to add those to my page instead of just listing them in my journaling.
Our sponsor for this issue is Hazel and Ruby and they sent us a ton of great washi tapes to work with.
I chose these two for my project,:
I was pretty excited when I saw the words "passion" and "joy" on this tape because this band inspires both for me. Although joy may be a little ironic, since their lyrics tend to be just a little melancholy at times ;)

This tape was exactly what I needed for my "list" of songs. I mounted strips of the tape on white cardstock and then hand cut each pieced that I wanted. Using a Moonlight White stamp ink pad by Brillance, I was able to stamp song titles on each "chalkboard" piece. I didn't fit all ten songs on the page, but seven were enough. :)
The photo is mounted on 3x4 paper cards from the July swag bag in the Paper Issues shop which is currently sold out. But the August ones should be available this week!

If you would like to play along, you can link up your projects *here* for a chance to win a fun grab bag from Hazel and Ruby. The deadline is Sunday, August 17th.

Thanks for stopping by today!

Monday, July 28, 2014

Paper Issues: Say Cheese!

The "Say Cheese" issue started this past Monday at Paper Issues!
I created this layout using lots of My Mind's Eye product and a few other pieces from Crate Paper and American Crafts...
Can I just start off by saying that I had the hardest time getting a photo of this page. Just could not get the lighting right. I think it's the white background.
I've been using Picasa to edit photos even though we got PSE 9 free with our last computer purchase. I've always wanted to try PSE, but have been so intimidated because it seems as if there is a lot to learn.
Thankfully one of the Paper Issues design team girls (Jen Chapin) encouraged me to give it a try and I was able to get a photo that wasn't too terrible.

For me, this page fits the Say Cheese theme because of the camera embellishment and the way Erin is smiling in these fun photos my brother took a few years back when he was in town.

Some other ideas suggested on the Paper Issues blog post are:
  • Showcase a favorite photo.
  • Use camera embellishments.
  • Think about using "Say Cheese" as a title.
  • Do you have any photos featuring cheesy smiles? Let's see 'em!
  • Add Polaroid-style frames to your project.
  • Share a project featuring Instagram, Polaroid or vintage photos.
  • Tell us about the silly things your kids (nieces, nephews, grandchildren, etc.) say.
  • Use Maya Road products.
So if you would like to link up a new or old project fitting our current issue, check out this link *Here!*
The sponsor is Maya Road who is very generously providing a goodie bag of product to one lucky winner.

Now I hate to say it, but I have another little mini blog break coming up here. So I will be back next Monday with another layout that I am excited to share! :)
Have a great week!

Friday, July 25, 2014

Milwaukee and Cakes

Ok, that was a nice little unexpected week long blog break!
The kids and I went to visit my brother and his wife in Milwaukee for the weekend so Mike could get some much needed work done on our house that involved cutting a hole in Evan's wall to install duct work.
So away we went!
We left on Friday and what should have been a six hour drive took eight because of traffic. Yikes!
During the day on Saturday, we visited the Milwaukee Art Museum...

and the...
Discovery World which made Evan happy because it had an aquarium. :)

Later that evening we headed back downtown for the Festa Italia which was a lot of fun!
We were even able to stay up late for the fireworks at 10:30.
You can see my brother there putting up rabbit ears behind Erin's head. And not quite sure why she likes to pose with her teeth out like that now. (Lol) It's her Bugs Bunny look.

On Sunday we went to The Domes which were pretty cool.
That's my brother and his wife Kathi posing with the kids who were having trouble seeing because of the bright sunlight. There are three domes there and each feature a different environment. Desert, Tropical and the third is Seasonal.

They have dinosaurs on display right now in the Tropical dome which the kids loved!
We had so much fun up there in Milwaukee! And my brother and sister-in-law were super cool because we ended up staying with them an extra day to give Mike a little more time to work on his project, so we didn't get home until Monday afternoon.
Tuesday was a day of getting unpacked, doing laundry and other chores. Not very exciting. But we needed a day to just hang out at home.

Then on Wednesday we headed downtown to try and get photos of as many STL 250 birthday cakes as we could. We ended up seeing ten, but I am only sharing a few here because Evan made me promise not to share the photos with him in them. The Milwaukee photos are fine. The cake ones for some reason, not so much. I have shared a few others with him in them, but he said no this time. :)

I shared these two photos on Instagram.
Just wanted to share this one, too, from our trip Downtown today. This one is at the Central library. Gotta love a cake with books on it. :)

This one is at the Central Library. So love that it has books on it!

And this one from the Old Post Office was Erin's favorite picture that she wanted me to share.
We actually have a photo of Evan and my friend Kelly's kids and her nephew, but Erin wanted a photo on her own. My friend met us down there for lunch which was great!

Here is the cake at the Peabody Opera House. I like that one, too!
And the one at Kiener Plaza...
is cool but they have it in the middle of a flower bed so you can't really pose with it.
We also got photos of the cakes at The Campbell House, Soldiers Memorial, the Wainwright Building, the Old Courthouse, The Drury Inn at the Arch, and the Ballpark Hilton. We already have photos with The City Garden, Busch Stadium and the Scottrade Center down there.

Places we could have gone because we were close but just too tired were Christ Church Cathedral, City Hall, and Union Station. We know our limits so we will save those for another day possibly. But I thought ten was a pretty good number!

I think next we are going to try and see the cakes in Forest Park. :)

Sorry for the lack of scrapbooking in this post, but it seems like Thursdays/Friday will be my day to share more personal things. So I will be back Monday with a layout to share!
And hopefully I will get a chance to visit blogs this weekend!
Have a great weekend!!

Friday, July 18, 2014

Two More Cakes!

This past week we kept busy with friends a few days.
On Tuesday we went to the Museum of Transportation with my friend Suzy and her family.
We had a lot of fun with them and their two boys are adorable :)
It's so funny comparing the difference in ages between their children and mine.
I am in just a whole different category of parenting now with a twelve (almost teen) and a six (almost seven year old), but the kids still had fun hanging out together. In fact, Evan is just fabulous with younger children. And I loved watching him interact with them. He was just so respectful and came to their level with games. Plus, he had the youngest giggling up a storm at one point. :)

Then on Wednesday we went out to Six Flags with my friend Kelly and her two boys.
So we noted that this is the cake for Six Flags. The amusement park right? So why does it look like a Zoo cake. As Evan said, it should at least have a roller coaster on it. LOL.

Not sure how many cakes that makes now, but we have a few big days where we are going to knock out a bunch at once. :)

And one last note...
don't forget! You have until this Sunday, August 20th, to link up your "Gettin' the Scoop on the Sweet Days of Summer" projects on the Paper Issues *Blog*.

Now off to enjoy the weekend!

Monday, July 14, 2014

Happy Scrappy Monday!

Week seven of our Super Summer started yesterday!
Only five to go after this one. :(

I did get a bit of scrapbooking done this weekend.
Do you remember this sketch and layout?
Well, I liked the sketch so much, I decided to use if for another page.
It's still being worked on though.
but it's almost done and I hope to share the finished page in my next post along with a few more of those STL 250 birthday cakes. We are going to see at least two more this week!

Then my next scrapbook project is a layout using washi tape by Hazel and Ruby for an upcoming Paper Issues challenge. They gave us some great tapes to work with, but *This Tape* is definitely going to be featured on my page. Kind of excited about it because the topic of my layout is one of my favorite bands. Ok, not U2. They are "The" favorite of all time. No, it's the other one I did a blog post on not too long ago *Here*.
I am turning that post into a layout just like I said I would.

After that layout is done, I am going to go sketch crazy. I pinned a few sketches this past weekend that I really want to try. I am going to share them on the Craft Your Nest 
blog on Wednesday, so be looking for that post.

As for family time, I absolutely love weekends when Mike is home. We actually were able to go on a little date Saturday morning/afternoon while Evan and Erin were with some neighbor friends. Then we had those same friends over to hang out with us for dinner and spend the night while their parents went to a reunion. A little bit of a babysitting tradeoff. :)

Yesterday, we had our annual Father's/Mother's Day brunch with the grandparents at Rooster Cafe 
downtown. They have some pretty delicious crepes there and I had the pulled pork one with spiced apples and fontina cheese. Soooooo good!
Then we tried to get the annual family photo...
which I honestly love despite the fact that three of us are wearing sunglasses. And Evan has that pre-teen smirk that says I am too old for this (lol) But it is so us!
And we always try to get a photo of the grandparents with the kids as well.
We got a better smile from Evan on this one! :)

Anyway, enough about my weekend.
How was yours?

Friday, July 11, 2014


we can cross a few more STL 250 Birthday Cakes off our list!
On Wednesday, the kids and I went to visit a historical mansion here in St. Louis called
the Chatillon-DeMenil mansion...
Evan didn't want to be in the picture since the cake was in the middle of the plants. Erin didn't mind reaching over :)
Our main reason for visiting the mansion (besides the cake) was to go on the tour. Evan has a summer social studies project that involves researching a predominant culture in the St. Louis area. He chose the French culture. We definitely learned quite a bit about the history of French culture in St. Louis on the tour, and I found quite a bit of it fascinating. You can see the website for the mansion *Here*.
Then we headed next door to the Lemp mansion...
to get a photo with their cake and have lunch. We have been wanting to try lunch there for a while. And when I found a groupon on-line, plus saw how close the two mansions were, we decided the tour and then lunch would be perfect. The Lemp Mansion itself has quite an interesting history. Some say it's haunted, and they host comedy and mystery dinners there that are supposed to be fun.

As we headed home, I remembered that there was one more cake not to far from our location...
the Cherokee Street shopping district. Evan decided to stay in the car while Erin and I popped out real quick to get a photo.
I have to say we are having a lot of fun on our cake expeditions! :)
And Mike has actually taken pictures of three more cakes while he was out on bike rides. Even though the kids and I weren't there for those cakes, I plan on adding those photos to our STL 250 Cake scrapbook album. (yes, there is going to be an album!)
So that brings our grand total of photos with cakes to 16 so far.
Hoping to get some more soon!

In Scrapbooking, I had a small little post go up on the Craft Your Nest blog yesterday sharing some fun giveaways on the internet this week involving Chic Tags, The Twinery and Paper Issues.
I am also working on not one, but two layouts right now. I will be able to share at least one of them next week.

Hope you have a great weekend!