Friday, September 28, 2012

Talk About a Crazy Week!

I came very close to not blogging today because we have been dealing with this...
Not the best photo because it's night time and from my phone.
Let me explain.
A huge thunderstorm blew through here on Tuesday night. A crazy big one that uprooted a tree that was in the park across the street which then fell on my mini van. That is the vehicle covered in with the tarp closest to the camera. Mike ran out and covered it because of all the rain rushing in through the busted windshield and destroyed sun roof.
So the tree was literally blocking the street! Most people turned around when they got to it. All except for that red car. He apparently didn't see the huge tree blocking the road and drove into it. Was literally stuck on it.
So the police came. And there is also the crowd of onlookers. Mike is second from the right talking to one of our neighbors. At this point when I snapped the photo, the forestry department had arrived to cut the tree. I was impressed with the speed those men went to with the chainsaw!

As for my van, it is apparently totaled according to the place where it was towed. Despite the tarp there was just too much water damage :(
So at this point not sure what is going to happen.

But the good news is no one was hurt. We are all safe :)
And I was so grateful that Mike was in town this week to help me deal with this.
And I did manage to finish all of my design team layouts for the Scrapbooking from the Inside Out October kit. I am sorry I don't have personal peeks from my own layouts though. Just this one that was up on the site
and this one...
the pretty papers included in the kit this  month by Echo Park and Basic Grey. So, so pretty :)
So I will be back on Monday with my first layout for the month!
Hope you have a good weekend! I am sure we will be doing some car shopping.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

3 is a Magic Number!

Here is the last layout for the month using my SFTIO kit.
With the theme of Innocence, I just wanted to do a page that talks about the day it fully hit me that my role had officially changed. I was no longer the "child". I was now the one in charge and responsible for another.

Evan, so much changed for your dad and I when you were born. Instead of it being just the tow of us, we became a family of three. Instead of just being Mary Jo and Mike, we became "mom and dad" as well.
we were suddenly responsible for the complete care and well being of you, our first and only child. And let me tell you, it scared me just a little bit. I was so afraid of doing something wrong and letting you down.
And I realized that my role had officially changed. I was the one in charge now, along with your dad of course. And it was up to us to make sure you were safe, happy and cared for. It was up to us to make those type of decisions. A new season had begun!

I love that photo. Our first photo as a family :)
My life changed in so many ways. And as a result, just a little bit more innocence was lost.
But oh so much gained!

As for the actual layout, I tried to keep it pretty simple. That photo just means so much to me.
But if you read my last post, you can see my blue misted scrap paper I mentioned. You just never know where those scraps are going to end up :)

I will be back with some peeks of the October kit on Thursday or Friday!

Friday, September 21, 2012


So a few things to say about this one. It was actually the last layout I created with my Scrapbooking From the Inside Out kit. Although I do have one more page to share with you next week.
But this one above for me was the hardest.
It started out as an 8 1/2 x 11 layout. Then somewhere along the way it was 12x12 that eventually turned back into the smaller size. I think it had a little to do with what I had left to work with as a base. A brown piece of patterned paper and a Vanilla sheet of cardstock.
I had been experimenting with some trim and blue Tattered Angels mist which was an epic fail. But then liked the look of the blue mist on the paper scraps. Especially since my prom dress in the photo is blue :)
One of those misted scraps ended up on the upcoming layout I have left to share.

Once I saw the blue scraps, I decided to just mist the whole sheet of Vanilla cardstock I had left. The Vanilla just wasn't working for me because it was too bright. And the misting helped tone that down.

I absolutely love that quote by George Bernard Shaw. I have for a long time. And so this became a page about embracing life.
Here is the journaling:

I am pretty sure when George Bernard Shaw stated the above quote, it wasn't a criticism of the younger generation at all. He was just making an observation. 
I mean look at this photo of me on prom night before my date arrived. There I am "striking a pose" for the camera. And man was I skinny! I look back on this photo and think, did I really appreciate it all. My youth, the future that lay ahead, and what I was capable of doing. Probably not. But in a way that is a part of the growth process. There is no way to know what lies ahead, and life is a journey that you have to take and experience one step at a time.
Of course there are  are a few things I might have done differently along the way to spare some hurt feelings. But for the most part, I wouldn't change a thing because I love my life and family.
But one life lesson I am embracing as I get older, is to really appreciate each year and each milestone. Yes, turning forty was a little rough. But then I think to myself, when I turn fifty I want to be able to look back and say that I made the most of my forties! That I didn't take this time in my life for granted worrying about all that is changing or may come. I made it count!

Yes, that photo is me on prom night. And yes, I had truly big hair :) It was the style back then.
I will say that looking at that photo once again makes me glad that my daughter gets her hair from my husband's side of the family. She has such great curly hair!

Here is a photo of her from a field trip she went on with her class this week. I was so happy that I could go :)
And then just for fun later that night at haircuts, our favorite hairdresser blew it out and straightened it. Just to see :) Sigh...even straight her hair is ten times better than mine. Lucky girl! So glad she will never have to get perms like I did back in the day (lol)

So I will be back on Monday or Tuesday with the last September SFTIO layout. I am debating about switching things up and maybe only blogging Tuesdays and Thursdays for a while. I'll have to see. I do enjoy my "What's on your workspace Wednesday" group. Maybe I could rotate. MWF one week and T Th the next. We'll see :)

Have a great weekend!!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012


Hi, everyone! If you are here because of What's on your Workspace Wednesday, you can see the project I am working on in the above photo. Another page for my mother-in-law's album from her Ireland trip. I finished my assignments for Crafting Ireland magazine and am waiting on my next kit. So I have a little time to make what I want!
There on the right is my new Glue Glider Pro adhesive tool. I have been wanting to try one for ages and was lucky enough to win a generous prize pack from my friend Rita on her recent 500th blog post giveaway. Here is a photo of what I won...
Erin and I had a lot of fun going through that package. In fact, I think Erin has used more of the supplies so far than I have on little art projects :) Thanks again, Rita!

And if you are looking for a free on-line class, Crafting Ireland has one coming up this Saturday.
You can read more about it here! They also include a list of needed supplies if you are joining in :)

And last but not least, I have a challenge up and some layouts on the Craft Your Nest blog today using one word titles.
If you are looking for an easy challenge, this is a good one :)

Have a great Wednesday, and I will be back Friday with a layout!

Monday, September 17, 2012


I think this was my favorite layout using the September kit by Scrapbooking From the Inside Out.  I found the quote by Jim Henson when I was searching the internet for ideas to go with the Innocence theme.
The most sophisticated people I know,
inside they are all children.
Seriously brilliant!
As my journaling states, it's not that I ever see myself as sophisticated.
But I do still feel young on the inside, no matter what my age
Maybe a little wiser, but I just don't feel any different some days despite what the mirror may tell me :)
And I think that is important.
I had a grandma who was singing and dancing into her 70's and 80's.
She was so very young at heart and I always admired that about her.

I also need to give a very special thank you to my sister-in-law Janel who took this photo for me. She is such a wonderful photographer and helped me to feel comfortable even though I don't really like having my photo taken :)

Have a fabulous Monday!

Friday, September 14, 2012

Five on Friday!

I absolutely adore Pinterest! Love, love, love it!
Today as we head into the weekend, I just want to share a few pins that make me smile.
And I hope they will put a smile on your face as well.
Or maybe inspire you to create something.
Because I know that almost everything I share with you today will most likely be incorporated onto a scrapbook page at some point :)

1. I love this because with Mike gone so much for work, it makes me think of how happy the kids are to see him when he comes home. I have a photo that I took at the airport last year...

 and the above quote would go so well with it.

2.  Anyone else? Seriously, I  have actually been better now that the kids are both in school full time. At least getting to bed before midnight. But there were times that I would be up at 1:30am thinking "what are you doing?" In fact, right now I need to get to bed ;)

3. I love these little ecards I am seeing all over Pinterest. I literally could do a whole post on this blog with nothing but ecards! And these two kind of go hand in hand for me. I am not a fan of cooking ;)  With two picky eaters and me the only adult most nights, it's tempting to eat out or order pizza. But I realize that it's just not practical or healthy, and I have been trying to plan meals at least five nights a week!

4. Um, this is so my husband. And the first time I saw this on Pinterest, I laughed so hard. I mean I feel bad for him and all, but I have never seen so much drama over milk :)

5. And another thing that I love about Pinterest. Seeing all of the toys that I grew up with! Did any of you have Fashion Plates? I loved these!
And this little tree house I had totally forgotten about. One of my favorites!

And anything Little People by Fisher-Price. All good stuff :)

Hope you have a great weekend! :)

Tuesday, September 11, 2012


It's Wednesday, so I am sharing my workspace with everyone linking up at Julia's blog
And I have to say that I am between projects. Both of which are for the next issue of Crafting Ireland magazine.
On the left is the October Afternoon line I just used yesterday on a project. And on the right is a Basic Grey Halloween line, I will be using on a layout today. I love the holidays! :)

And even farther to the left, you can still see a little peek of the album I am working on for my mother-in-law. Doing a bit of multi-tasking here :)
I am looking forward to scrapbooking this afternoon while the kids are in school. But first I need to fit in a few chores and exercise.
How about you? What is everyone else up to today?

Monday, September 10, 2012


Here is layout number two this month using the September Innocence kit by Scrapbooking From the Inside Out. The alphabet Thickers that make up my title are from American Crafts DIY line. I actually used some powdered chalk this time and it worked beautifully. I also chalked the Prima flower down at the bottom right so it wouldn't be quite so bright. :)

Here is the journaling:
Why does it seem that children are often the ones who suffer because of the choices adults make? Years of teaching and then having children of my own, have made me a bit of an advocate for their well being. Their safety. Their happiness. And I feel so frustrated and even angry when I see children treated like pawns and used to hurt others. Treated with so little respect, or even ignored! It makes me wish I could be a surperhero and rescue each and every one from such callous and hurtful behaviour.

But I can't. I can oldy do what I can to help out as much as possible. And still it doesn't seem enough sometimes! It feels as if children aren't allowed to be children any more, and so much innocence is lost too soon. Why can't we just let kids be kids?

This idea came to me pretty early on when I was brainstorming. It's something that has been on my mind ever since I left teaching. It is on my mind now as I watch my husband's family struggle and cousins go years without being able to see or talk to each other. As I see those close to me deal with loss and divorce. So much pain to all concerned and I can't help feeling frustrated at times. But I keep praying. I pray for forgiveness. I pray for the children involved as well as the parents. But mostly I pray that I am not a part of the problem. And I know sometimes I fail as well.

Ironically, this photo was taken on a happy occasion. A birthday party for a good friend and neighbor. I was taking some photos of the kids all lined up together and snapped a photo of their feet as well :)
And I am happy to say that these children are all pretty much allowed to be their age. Our families are pretty much on the same page when it comes to that. And I thrilled to be a part of this group! :)

Thanks for stopping by today, and I will be back on Wednesday! :)

Friday, September 7, 2012

Autumn in Canada

I have a layout on the Crafting Ireland magazine blog.
You can see the full post and a mini step by step tutorial of how it came together here. :)

Now that school has begun for both kids, we are trying to walk to and from school every day for a bit of extra exercise. I like living close enough to school that we can walk. I captured this photo with my phone this morning...
I swear I did not ask them to hold hands :) I can't remember exactly why he took her hand, but he did. And I grabbed my phone as quickly as I could. I mean how often am I going to catch a fifth grader holding his little sister's hand. It made my morning :)

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

WOYWW 170 and Craft Your Nest

Since I have done absolutely no real crafting since last week, but work space hasn't changed much. Seriously! Same page on there with just a few photos stuck down. Hoping to change that this week.
Since so many of you comment about how much you love the view from my windows, I thought I would share a few photos today of how that view came to be :)

My scrap office is an old remodeled sun porch off a back upstairs bedroom.
My husband literally knocked it down to the supports!
Floor and all! And you can kind of see why I call it my scrap treehouse. I literally do feel I am scrapbooking way up in that huge Magnolia tree that is in our backyard :)

And then he built it all back up again from scratch! These are the windows you usually see in my photos :)
It took thirteen months from start to finish with everything else we had going on. And believe me, I am forever grateful for all of the hard work he put into this room for me. I do not take it for granted one little bit.

So just a different perspective of my scrap space today :)
And the reason I am sharing this is for What's on your Workspace Wednesday. I have linked up with
Julia's blog, the stamping ground, where we share our work spaces with fabulous crafters all over the world :)

Now for my Wednesday challenge at Craft Your Nest, I am asking you to scrapbook a layout using a letter as your journaling. Plus, I have a little giveaway to go with if you participate. So if you are in need of a challenge, come on over! :)

Happy Wednesday!

Monday, September 3, 2012

Happy September! :)

Wow! I have to say that it's kind of shocking that it's September already.
But at the same time I am happy to say that summer didn't go by too fast :)

A new month also means a new kit at Scrapbooking From the Inside Out. And today I am going to share one of the layouts I made with the Innocence kit :)

I used some of my favorite lyrics from a U2 song called Original of the Species.
"Baby, slow down. The end is not as fun as the start. Please stay a child, somewhere in your heart."
And along with this song, a letter to my girl telling her to just enjoy being a kid and not try to grow up too fast :)

Included in the kit are DIY Thickers and WOW! glitter in silver by American Crafts which I actually used for this layout. But I experimented a bit with chalks and the Thickers on two of my other layouts.

Here is a photo of the kit in it's entirety. Isn't it pretty :)
If you go to the kit inspiration page here, you will find a slide show of the design team layouts, link to the Pinterest board, music playlist, and lots of great quotes. The journaling prompts and challenges will be coming soon!
And in the next few weeks, I will share the rest of my layouts with more in depth details.

On another note, I realized that I scraplifted myself just a little for this layout.
I used a similar design on this layout...
and this one! I am liking the vertical design across the page with photos, title, pattern paper strips and journaling. In fact, I think it is a favorite ;)

Do you ever scraplift yourself?