Thursday, May 30, 2013

Just a Peek!

I am participating in my first "issue" on the Paper Issues Blog this Sunday, and am finding I am a little nervous about it :)
Here are two peeks at one of my projects. The one that will be featured on the blog hop!
For all of you scrapbookers, can you guess what line I was given to work with? :)
I have a few other projects I made and will share those over the next week or so.

Now like I said previously, I am finding May is high on the busy scale. Right up there with the month of December. Between finishing school and Evan celebrating his birthday yesterday,  (my boy is now 11 and I just can't believe it!) I had two field trips to go on last week.
Erin's kindergarten class went to a park for an all day excursion. And the only photos I have from that day are still on my phone. Forgot to bring a camera.

But Evan's field trip to our state capital is another story. I did bring my Canon point and shoot camera for that trip. After a two hour bus ride, we arrived at Jefferson City. I have driven through before but never visited the capital.

It's actually quite lovely outside...
as well as inside.
And I really love the lounge with the mural by Thomas Hart Benton.

It's such an amazing representation of Missouri history. The good and the bad :) You can read a little more about him and the story behind the mural *Here!* I really found it fascinating. And for Evan, who loves art and architecture, this trip was fascinating for him as well.
There was also gorgeous stained glass!

Then we went up to visit the Governor's mansion and gardens. And what I love most about Evan's social studies teacher is that she really puts things into perspective for the students. While everyone was voicing their opinion that "it must be nice" to live in a house like that, she reminded them what a huge job and responsibility our governor had. But in a respectful and thoughtful way that caught their attention.
The view from his gardens :)
It was just a really great field trip in all and I personally felt like I learned a lot! I've felt that way on several of their field trips this year. :)
Really glad I could go on this one!

Hope you have a great weekend! I will be back next week sharing my Paper Issues project :)

Tuesday, May 28, 2013


Felt good to have a blog break during such a busy time!
But today I am back with a layout created using Sketch #4 and the May kit from The Paper Bakery.
I am also definitely linking this layout up over at Paper Issues because it definitely fits the theme of Everyday Life!
Here is the sketch by Juliana Michaels.
And here is my take...

I decided to just have one photo and then use two of the Maggie Holmes overlays in place of the other photo blocks. The overlays are backed by one piece of patterned paper and one piece of vellum. My journaling is actually written on top of the overlays though. Then instead of four squares behind, I layered some of the die cuts from the kit and a tag I received for becoming a new subscriber. Yep, I decided to go ahead and subscribe. The price is reasonable and I really love the site. I've liked the last couple of kits, but had already had a lot of the product. So I know the kits are my style. Plus there is always fun flair! And I just love the sketches!

Erin - you put a tutu on Curious George and insisted he was a gril! You also insisted that George needed to be buckled in when riding with us in the car! One day I caught George waving to me from the backseat. So cute!
So I did finish a layout or two over the holiday weekend. :)

Speaking of Memorial Day, I pulled out a photo of a friend I want to share.

This is from before the days of digital photos. 1997 to be exact. My friend Jim was in the Air Force and was stationed up in Great Falls, Montana with his wife and son. I had been friends with them for many years. Mike and I decided to make a trip up to see them, and they took us to Glacier National Park while we were up there. Talk about beautiful. Montana is just beautiful period! We took this photo of Jim there. Unfortunately in 2003, he lost a battle to cancer. But when I think of him, I always think of him how he appeared in this photo. Strong and proud. A man of honor and faith. He was and always will be a hero to me and this Memorial Day I remember him and his family! The world lost a great man and I miss him still.

I hope you had a great holiday weekend!

Monday, May 20, 2013

Wrapping Things Up!

Here we go again!
I think I need a blog break just for a week with everything going on for the end of the school year.
Not going on any trips this time ;)
Just have field trips and teacher gifts and Evan's 11th birthday all happening right now.
Need to focus on that.
Plus, feel like I am coming down with this little cough virus that is going around the kid's school.

Before I go though just a few things!
Paper Issues  new issue is up and being sponsored by Lifestyle Crafts formerly known as Quickutz.

You can see the blog hop and how to win one of seven prize packs from Lifestyle Crafts *Here*
You can also link up your pages and projects using dies or with the theme showing your everyday life!

I also want to share two more of Evan's drawings that he is very proud of. And so am I!
 This is a drawing of his school that he made for one of the teaching assistants who was out having surgery. You can bet I made a copy of it! And I did blur out the name of the school where he had printed it though.
And this is a house for sale next door to the school playground/parking lot. I cannot wait to see what he does with his talent! :)
Off to get started on one of my many projects!
I should be back to regular blogging next week!
I hope you have a great week!

Friday, May 17, 2013

A Whole Lot of Mexico and a Little Bit of Scrapbooking!

Today I wanted to share the last of the Mexico pictures that I took with my point and shoot camera. You can see the other two posts here: Hualtuco, Mexico 2013 and Mexico Trip Part 3!

Mike took a ton of photos on his iphone that he is supposed to be sharing with me, but hasn't had time yet. So I know we have more, but I will spare you all of those ;) :)

So here we have: Mexico, the Final Installment.
This is the area outside of our hotel room section.
Funny story. One night while waiting for Mike and Evan to finish up at the beach, get dressed and then come back down to meet Erin and I for dinner, we realized the resort was having a movie night. How exciting! And Toy Story 3 to book in English with Spanish subtitles. I quickly ran to tell Mike that is where we would be. By the time we got back, someone had switched the language to Spanish with English subtitles. Oy! What a challenge to read the subtitles to Erin so quickly. After the first ten minutes I was doing a shorthand version. But still fun!
There was a "show" every night in this little theater/auditorium around 9pm. Usually a musical show.
On this particular evening, it was "Casino Night". And in the background on the screen, U2 playing at Slane Castle. Of course we had to stop and watch for a bit :)

Another evening we went back downtown to a little pizza place that is supposed to be super popular. La Crema Bar.
Pretty cool menu.

And a little gated door that took you up to it's location on the second floor. It was supposed to open at 7pm but I guess they believe in soft openings. The door to the restaurant didn't open until 7:30 and by then there was quite a line!
But it was a cool environment to say the least. Lots of mismatched tables and seats. Even some couches!

Lots of unusual lighting and things to look at.
By this time, the kids were completely worn out. Erin looks like she is about to fall asleep there. And even though it was a warm evening and the restaurant was all open up there on the second floor, we didn't feel hot at all.
And then we had to go get ice cream of course :)
The other great thing about the trip...Evan made a really good friend. They played together a lot! Even including Erin in some of their adventures. Our families don't live close, but we exchanged email addresses and phone numbers to stay in touch. The boys have already talked three times on Facetime since we have been back! :) They really had a great time together.
And we had a great time on our trip!

And now for a little bit of scrapbooking!
The deadline for Paper Issues "Hope Chest" issue with Pink Paislee is tomorrow May, 18th. So simple to win a prize pack courtesy of Pink Paislee. The details are all on *This Post* here. And if you have any layouts or projects featuring Pink Paislee or a Mother's Day theme, you might want to link them up for a chance to be featured on the blog!

Also, for all you washi tape fans out there,  Crafting Ireland Magazine has a blog post up *Here*
called "Ways to Washi" with some fun projects using washi tape including my Easter Egg Decor project I made. :)
So make sure you check it out!

Hope everyone has a great weekend!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

The Street Where We Live

I finished up a page last weekend on Mother's Day using a sketch from The Paper Bakery. I am really loving their sketches!
And my take on the sketch...
I decided to go for an 8 1/2 x 11 size page this time so my photo would really stand out and be the focal point. But I kept the layered papers underneath and part of the title in the same general area.
I love this photo of my street!

Also want to share a few more photos from Mother's Day. I always like to have Mike take a few pictures of me with the kids just to have a way to compare us from year to year.
Here are a couple from this 2013.
I can't believe how big they are getting!

And some good news for Evan. His fifth grade at his school has been participating in a program called Dancing Classrooms. They have been able to participate in the program through a grant. The programs mission:
Our mission is to cultivate essential life skills in children through the practice of social dance. Our vision is to help create Schools and communities where every child is connected, respected, and provided a safe environment in which to thrive.

So basically, in ten weeks, the students learned several types of ballroom dances in 20 lessons by an amazing teacher. Then they enter a completion with other local schools. In the first round they won a gold medal. Last night was the finals and they won 1st place overall!! They were so excited.
This was the shot of the whole group with the trophy. So many parents trying to get photos, so I made sure to get what was most important to me. Evan :)
Evan there on the far right with some of his friends celebrating. It was pretty late, but they were so happy.
Huge accomplishment!

We are so busy here right now with the end of the school year! Between field trips, dance competitions, Evan's birthday coming up, and me subbing for the school now, I feel things are kind of a whirlwind! Really looking forward to summer and what will hopefully be a slower pace. :)

Monday, May 13, 2013

Meeting Mickey

Crafting Ireland magazine featured one of my layouts on their blog last week.
You can see a small tutorial up on their blog *Here* :)

Hope all of you moms out there had a great Mother's Day!
I did. Mike took the kids to the grand opening of the Lego Store here in town.
We finally have one!
I was tempted to go, but then decided to stay home, just relax, and get caught up on
The Voice. :)
But when they came back, I received a few sweet gifts...
A store card from all of them with a gift card to Barnes & Noble (yay, books!)
A sweet card from Erin with her journaling handwritten by her teacher...
and her sweet little home made bowl.
And a one of a kind iris watercolor painting by Evan. His class had a walking field trip to the Botanical Gardens to draw flowers. Then they came back and added the watercolors. I have to say I love how their school includes art in the curriculum! They are very fortunate.

And I am so fortunate and blessed to be a mom to my two!
I will be back on Wednesday with a sketch layout!

Friday, May 10, 2013

My Paper Issues Design Team Intro Post...

is up on their blog this morning. You can read it *Here!*
I am super excited to share it with you and hope you will come check it out. :)

All of the design team members are doing little intro posts sharing layouts and five random facts or issues.
Reading the ones posted so far has been fun. But Shannon Morgan's post here made me think of a funny story from my college days that I want to share. Or at least get written down somewhere before I forget. It's one of those, "if I could go back, I would have done things differently," stories. But not in a bad way.

In Shannon's post, she mentions her obsession with Bill Murray.
I have a similar kind of obsession and love for this actor...

(none of these photos were taken by me)

Yes, Tom Hanks!
It started in 1992 when my family and I (plus boyfriends) took a trip to Washington D.C. for my dad's business meeting and then decided to head up to NYC for a bit. At the last minute, we got tickets to The Goodbye Girl on Broadway starring Bernadette Peters and Martin Short. Very funny! But I digress. It turns out that Tom Hanks and his wife Rita Wilson were attending.

They have been married since 1988. You have to love that kind of longevity in Hollywood!
Anyway, we were all standing in the lobby and lo and behold we look over and they are standing there. Oh my goodness, the conflict of not wanting to be one of those annoying fans but secretly really wanting a photo and autograph. To my neverending regret, we decided to leave them alone and just gape from afar.
At this point, my boyfriend at the time, sister's boyfriend and my brother had gone to the rest room. Tom Hanks headed that way. The next part is too funny for words and a story that only my brother could tell with such drama and wit.
My boyfriend's zipper had gotten stuck on his pants, and my sister's boyfriend was in the stall trying to help him. My brother Pete was standing by the sinks waiting for them to finish. Tom Hanks comes out of a stall and is at the sink washing his hands when my brother says, "I can't get it up." Meaning the zipper of course. Pete said it was like a classic scene in a movie. Tom Hanks froze, looked up and did a double take. Then laughed.

Oh to be a fly on the wall in that bathroom. I would have loved to see it!
But of course I missed that whole scene.
When Tom returned to the lobby, he visited a little bit with a group of teenagers one of whom was in a wheelchair. Joking with them and just being a totally cool guy. The minute he walked away they were all screaming and rushing to the pay phone (this was only 1992 remember) and talking excitedly about their experience to someone on the other end of the line.

Even since that day, he has been 100% my favorite actor and always will be. :)
Although I still wish I had the photo and autograph ;)

Love you, Tom!

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Happy Wednesday!

We are halfway to the weekend! :) Today I have a post up with a layout over at the Craft Your Nest blog.
Here is a peek. I would love for you to come over and see the rest of it, which you can see *Here*.It is the one layout I was able to complete on National Scrapbooking Day.

I may not have scrapbooked much this past weekend, but I have been working hard on cleaning my scrap space...
Like I said in my last post, I am cleaning all seven of the windows inside and out! Thankfully, they fold in pretty easily so I can clean them from inside the room and not have to climb a ladder on the outside. My room smells pretty strongly of glass cleaner right now, and as of today the windows are done!
Right after I took this photo, I noticed my right pendant light was burned out. And of course there were no light bulbs to be found anywhere. That's ok though. It gave me a good excuse to go lightbulb shopping. Evan has had a tiny lightbulb burned out in his bedside lamp for at least a month. Maybe more. Finally picked some up.
All of these piles and containers are being sorted, purged and organized. I am about halfway done right now.
It feels good to really give this place a good cleaning every few months. I like starting with a fresh slate and with everything nicely organized. Or as much as it can be :)

Fun to look at the clean side of my space and see Evan's art on my counter. A city skyline he has been working on. I wish you could see it closer. If you click on the photo, you probably can. Some amazing details in there! And I love his array of pencils. Each one has a different type of point on it that he sharpened just so for a different type of line drawing. This kid has never had a real art class. And it amazes me what he can do at just ten years of age!

Well, lots to do today between the kid's school, homework and trying to finish up my office.
Have a great Wednesday!

Monday, May 6, 2013

You Are Loved

I hope all of my scrapbook friends had a Happy National Scrapbooking Day on Saturday! It started out slow here scrapbook wise. We are just  so busy on the weekends! But Evan, Erin and I did sit down and scrapbook together for a little while around the dining room table. I managed to finish one layout for a sketch challenge at The Paper Bakery, which I am going to try and get some photos of it today to share this week. I also followed along on their blog hop.
In addition to the Paper Bakery, I signed up for the big NSD happenings at Big Picture Classes (formerly Big Picture Scrapbooking) and received all of the challenges in my inbox. May still try to do a few of those even though the due date will be up. And I wrote down a few challenges from Two Peas in a Bucket, that will have to be done at later date as well.
So all in all, did accomplish some scrapbooking!

Today though, I want to share a layout I made for a challenge in a private Facebook group consisting of members of a former scrapbook site I used to love but is now closed. The Cropper's Cottage.
My friend Shalini has gotten everyone excited about scrapbooking again by introducing weekly challenges within our group. This layout is for the black and white + flower challenge...
I decided to go with a black and white photo and then keep it minimal with gray and white which is a current favorite color combo of mine. :) The chipboard heart is inked with my gray prima chalk pad. I love this photo of Mike and Erin when she was only a few weeks old. I had it framed and on display for awhile, but the frame broke and I hadn't replaced it yet.Then I decided to just create a layout using it. This challenge was a perfect excuse to do just that!

In other scrapbook news, The newest "issue" just went up at Paper Issues. The theme is "Hope Chest" and the sponsor is Pink Paislee.
One lucky winner will receive a Hope Chest prize pack and one winner will receive a Cottage Farms prize pack! Check out the post *Here* to see how you can win.
I am planning to link up a few layouts myself, and am excited to be sharing my design team introduction post on their blog this upcoming Friday!

And project scrap room clean up is well under way...finally! I decided my windows needed a good Spring cleaning. And as you can see from the blog header photo, I have nice big windows. Seven of them that wrap around my scrap porch. So will be finishing that up today, finishing the dusting and organizing and vacuuming as well. Love a nice clean, organized scrap room!

Hope you have a Happy Monday!

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Crafting Ireland Magazine Issue 17 and Healthy Living Goal for May

You can read the newest issue for free *Here*.

My contribution to the magazine this month is a little Instagram mini titled...
The cover...
And just to give you and idea of the basic formula the album follows.
You can see the rest of the album and a little tutorial on page 19 in the magazine. Plus there are tons of other great projects such as Timi's Lucky Star album. :)

I will also have one of my other assignments featured on their blog soon. I will be sure to let you know when.

Ok, it is May 1st and time for another "Healthy Living Goal".
1.) I am eating little to no fast food. Have had it only two times in over four months!
2.) Am exercising at least five days per week.
3.) Gave up Dr. Pepper for the month of March and had my first this past Sunday at a birthday dinner celebration. So almost two months without Dr. P. And let me tell you, it didn't taste that great. I let myself have it as a treat, and it really wasn't. Plus, made the mistake of having it at dinner time and then was awake until 1:30 pm messing up my sleep goal :)
4.) Trying to be in bed before midnight most nights. Doing ok until this past week. Haven't been asleep earlier than 12:30 any of the nights. Not good! So definitely going to bed early tonight.

Now for May...
Going to Unplug from Screens More!
Yep. With summer coming, computer time will be limited anyway.
So I am going to limit my computer time in a big way.
No computer after 9:30 pm (unless design team related) or before 8am.
And limiting my time severely when the kids are here unless we are working on a project together. Or they are engaged in their own projects and I have a little free time to work on photo editing. But I am going to set a timer!
Just really going to let go of the need to check email, facebook, etc... more than once or twice a day.
It has to be done!

And it's not going to be easy. But I have faith in myself :)
Wish me luck!