Monday, January 31, 2011

Valentines Use-Your-Stash challenge

Edited to add: I've dated this post so that it will stay at the top while this challenge is running! All new posts will be showing up below this!

My goal for all my Valentine's this year (for friends & family....not my kids classroom valentines) is to use what is already in my stash.

Anyone else want to join me?

We can start a little blog hop-a-roo!
Leave a comment if you would like to join me in this fun challenge, and then come back and link us up with your blog and creation. ♥

Here's one I made:
I played along with CC305

Stamps: SU Holidays & Wishes
Paper: Pretty in Pink, Cherry Cobbler, Melon Mambo, assorted DP
Inks: Memento Tuxedo Black, Melon Mambo (for sponging)
Accessories: Sizzlit heart dies, SU heart and corner rounder punches, sponge

And a card for my DD who LOVES penguins!

Stamps: OCL Penguin Fun, PTI Fresh Alphabet, SU All Holidays, SU Loving Hearts (inside)
Paper: SU Cherry Cobbler, White, Pink Pirouette
Inks: Memento Tuxedo Black, SU Cherry Cobbler
Accessories: Sizzlit heart dies, Nesties circles and circle scallops, PTI Banner die, red brads, Cuttlebug heart embossing folder, sponge

and the inside...

and the layers, just for fun...

I made another one today, but I won't post that until the recipient has seen it...which will be a few weeks. :)

I'm so pleased with this fun little project I completed last evening. It was based on something that I had printed off, and I'm so sorry that I can't give credit where it's due. So if you have ever seen this and know who originally had this beautiful idea, please share with me. I made it my own through different embellishments, but still, the original idea got me going. This is for DD2's teacher for a Valentine's gift. It holds a Hobby Lobby gift card. Her teacher is a very crafty person, so I'm sure she'll find something there to suit her needs!

I also used everything from my stash. I had two things that I thought I needed to get. Our local quilt shop has a bin of wool felt scraps, so I was wanting some pink for the heart. Until I realized, I had a whole bunch of fabric scraps. Why not dig around in that tote. Surely, with two girls in the house, I have some pinky-type scraps. :)

Supplies: PTI Ocean Tides Felt, SU 5" Scallop square die, SU linen thread, PTI buttons,
MM dyeable trims (lace), K&Co stitched felt ribbon (handle), fabric (heart), Sizzix heart die, Sizzlit mini tag, SU Tagger's Dozen("for you").

One last card for the evening last night, using up some scraps!

Stamps: NONE!
Paper: SU Pretty in Pink, Basic Grey Bittersweet Mousse
Inks: Melon Mambo

Accessories: PTI button, ribbon from my stash, SU heart trio punch, paper crimper, Nesties scallop heart, dimensionals.

OLW Blog hop coming Tuesday!

The One Little Word blog hop starts Tuesday at 8 am PST!
I'm so excited to be a part of this!
My first blog hop ever!!

It will start over at Margie's blog,

Saturday, January 29, 2011

February meal planning

Wow, here I am again wondering where another month went. Time to get February's meal plan put together. One thing I'd like to start doing is putting a weekly menu up on the counter. A friend did this, and I'm just remembering it now as I've been thinking of a way to avoid the daily and sometimes twice or three times daily, "What's for supper, Mom??".

Onward and forward....FEBRUARY.

Taco Pie
Deep Dish Beef bake
Ravioli Lasagna
Meatloaf Pie
Western Omelet Casserole
Ham and Pineapple Fried Rice
Chicken Corn Chowder
Black Bean and Vegetable Soup
Chicken and Noodle Casserole
Blueberry Cream Muffins (heart shaped, of course!)
Chicken Parmesan Bundles
Beef and Rice Enchiladas w/pepper jack cheese sauce
BBQ Beef and Bean Cornbread Casserole
Sausage Soup

And some old standbys thrown in like:
Homemade pizza

And new recipes to try:
Cheese Blintzes
Nutty Chocolate Batons
Crazy Pizza Bread
Easy Caramel Pecan Rolls

Have a cuppa'

Just a few pictures of how I brew my most favorite cup of joe.
Aerobie Coffee Press
Water temp to between 170*-175*
Kickapoo coffee
Creamer and sweetner
(we don't buy a lot of organic, trust me! It's just my daily little treat and I buy it myself!!)

Ahh, bliss!
Now to find some chocolate...................♥
Hope you are having a wonderful weekend!

Friday, January 28, 2011


Congratulations to
You've won my Shutterfly drawing!
A $10 gift card will soon be delivered electronically delivered to your inbox!!

Thank you all for stopping by today and everyday.
I love your feedback!

Wohoo, I've had over 1,000 visitors!!
Thank you to each and everyone who has taken the time to stop by and visit my blog. It's been a wonderful journey so far. I hope you found some creative inspiration or on days when I don't post creative stuff, I hope you've left with a good feeling in your heart!

To celebrate, I'm offering one lucky winner a $10 gift card to

This drawing is now closed!

Please leave me a comment below and let me know if I'm doing this blog thing right
(I love feedback!),
and I will enter your name in the drawing. Please leave a way to contact you in case YOU are the lucky winner. If you are one of my "followers", you will be entered twice!

Celebration will end Friday, January 28th, 10 am CT.

Good luck!

Digital Tuesday Challenge

This card was done for the Tuesday Digital sketch challenge, here. I opened up my file of digi stamps and was surprised at the assortment I found. This one used here is a new one though. I love the pre-colored images. It's one less step you have to do, especially when you're mojo isn't flowing smoothly. I'll be sending this to my aunt who just had cataract surgery.
Thank you for a fun digi challenge!

Stamps: Peony in a Jar, digi stamp from Fred, she said, PTI Background Basic Text Styles
Paper: SU Daffodil Delight, Garden Green, PTI White
Inks: SU Garden Green
Accessories: ribbon from my stash, brads colored black w/Copics, Cuttlebug embossing folder, corner rounder.

Tuesday Trigger

Finally got to this beautiful looking challenge!
The Moxie Fab World Tuesday Trigger Challenge

I love how this card came together. It was one of the last ones I made last evening, and it seems like the mojo finally started flowing...just in time for me to head off to bed!

I was inspired my the scalloped edge of the box, the muffin liners (paper crimping) and the soft pink colors and filigree lined box. These are all incorporated into my card.
The card measures 5x5 and I will use PTI's 5x5 envelopes to send it out.

Stamps: SU Holidays & Wishes
Paper: SU River Rock, Pretty in Pink, PTI White, Basic Grey Bittersweet Mousse DP
Inks: Memento Tuxedo Black, SU Melon Mambo
Accessories: PTI button, ribbon from my stash, Fiskars heart border punch, SU scallop punch, corner rounder, sponge, Cuttlebug embossing folder, paper crimper, Nesties Scallop heart

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Cards, cards, cards

Finally, finally some stamped creations for you to enjoy!
I've been feeling bad about all the posts full of text and no cards to see.
About 7 pm last evening, I finally found my way into my stamp corner.
It took awhile to get the mojo flowing, so some of these are not my favorites, LOL.

This first one is a sympathy card using a pre-colored digi image I found this afternoon at Fred, she said. When ordering with them, if you order $10 or more, you will get 10% off. Fun!

Stamps: Corner Gerbera daisy, digi stamp from Fred, she said, SU Close as a Memory, SU The Art of Life (background)
Paper: SU Tangerine Tango, Garden Green, PTI
Inks: Memento Tuxedo Black, Tangerine Tango
Accessories: ribbon from my stash, pearls, ticket corner punch, Cuttlebug embossing folder, corner rounder, tearing edge, sponge.

These next two cards were made for the CAS challenge over at SCS.
I love using flourishes, such simple elegance.

Stamps: Fancy Pants Pollen Dust, PTI Everyday Classics
Paper: SU Baja Breeze, PTI Ivory

Inks: Memento Tuxedo Black
Accessories: pearls, corner rounder, sponge.

Stamps: SU Priceless, Close as a Memory (sentiment)
Paper: SU Perfect Plum, Grey, PTIWhite

Inks: Memento Tuxedo Black, SU Perfect Plum
Accessories: circle and scallop circle punches, SU grey ribbon

This next card is for the SCS Color Challenge this week. It started out as a sympathy card and ended up being a birthday card. I just couldn't get the soft, mellow feel with that yellow!

Stamps: SU Lovely as a Tree
Paper: SU Old Olive, Night of Navy, Daffodil Delight, PTI Kraft

Inks: SU Night of Navy
Accessories: brads from my stash, circle punch, Cuttlebug embossing folder, Nesties Labels 14 (inside)

And here's the inside:

This last one I'm not at all happy with, but it's very CAS. I'm always a little uncomfortable with CAS, never quite knowing when to stop or what to add!

Stamps: unknown digi image from my files
Paper: SU Black, PTI White Inks: just my printer ink Accessories: Score Pal, scissors to cut out nothes

Simple, simple, simple!

Wellness Journey, week 4

Lisa Cohen's Wellness Jouney at Big Picture Classes

Here is my page for Week 4

Once again...

I'm so inspired my a blogging, scrapping, crafty momma'! Please take a moment to read Ali's post. Yes, her life is different than mine, but yet, I so enjoyed her words that echoed what's been in my own heart the last few days..."I have no desire to be busy." I had lunch with a friend this week and one of her comments with being so busy with their family business is that she afraid of not being busy and so she has jumped in with both feet with their business expansion.

Now, I know, we are not all the same and some of us just need to have fires in every pot. But that is SO not me. I turn into a monster if I have too many fires going. I can't handle it. I strive to keep balance in our home. If I worked full-time, or even part (trust me, I've thought about it...), the precious balance we've come to know in our home would totally be disrupted. So...I just appreciate help with putting my thoughts into words, thank you Ali.

I journaled about it last evening, and here are my rough notes.
That's all I did, just outlined my thoughts after reading her post.

*Daily routines, a must
*No desire to be super busy
*Making choices to keep from being too busy, saying no, remembering my limits/values
*engaging in the here and now (ha, mindfulness comes up again!!)

And this thought from a blog reference Ali had:
*Don't be too consumed w/making sure everything runs smoothly, step back and enjoy the moment, be able to say "Hey, lets run off and do this or that"...even at home, "Hey girls, lets just sit down and play games" (which actually we are getting pretty good at...most evenings we play at least one game together before bedtime).

And another blog reference which I had read before:
urgent vs. important
"Can the urgency fall back in line and the important take priority?"
"Be intentional with your time."

And thoughts on pursuing creativity which somehow in my mind connects with all these thoughts because that is part of my "job" at home:
The end of busy
The No. 1 habit of Highly creative people

creativity. solitude. unplug.
Even when all is quiet at home, having the computer on and being online makes it's own "noise". I know I need that to be quieter, so that I can allow my creativity more free reign.

OK, I'm off to CREATE some cards!!
Thanks for listening.
I'm off to put these words into action!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Check out this FUN blog candy assortment

Head on over to Michelle's blog!
Wow, looks like some super fun, delicious stampin' goodies in that bundle!
Follow her blog (and let her know in a comment that you are following her) for an additional chance to win!
Then spread the love by posting on your own blog about it all.

Doodles class

I'm really excited to have joined the Doodles 101 class! How fun does that sound!! It's a self-paced class that I **hope** will help open up the artistic side of my brain. My mother was an artist, so I'm hoping that buried deep within me are some of those genes!

Finding this class was perfect timing. I've been keeping a journal since the beginning of the year (wow, is it almost the end of January??? I think this is the longest I have kept a journal...). I've noticed that my handwriting is "stiff". I hate that. I want free-flowing script! I've also noticed it on my Project Life journal cards...I wish my words just flowed on paper like they do in my head.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Handmade creation just for you...

Today, I saw this on Melissa's blog and was lucky enough to be one of the first five to comment. I really like the idea and am excited to pay it forward.

This is how it works:
I promise something handmade to the FIRST 5 people who leave a comment here specifically stating they want to join in the Pay It Forward fun. The original "rules" state that you must repost this status on your own blog, offering something handmade by you to 5 other people and it must be sent to your 5 people some time in 2011. (Edited to add like Melissa has on her blog)
however I am not requiring this. If you would like to repost this and offer something to your readers, that would be lovely, but feel free to enter even if you do not have the time/money/desire to pay it forward at this time. I got to thinking about her addition last night, and I like should be able to be able to get some goodies in the mail even if you can't do it yourself!!

Come join the fun!
I look forward to creating something just for you and four other lucky bloggers who leave a comment on this post.

Stylish blog award

I've had this in my blog drafts. I was awarded this over the holidays and started the post, but never got a chance to finish it!!'s award reminded me of it.

I received this award from JaneenK.
With this award, you are to list eight things about yourself and then choose others to share the award with. It's a fun way to get to know others through blogging. Thank you Janeen. :)

Here's my list:

1. I crave routine.

2. But I love fun surprises that take me out of my routine!

3. I love to exercise. I feel like I have to have those endorphins to survive.

4. And good thing I love exercise, b/c I love to cook and bake.

5. I enjoy crafting and want to encourage the artsy side of me more (signed up for a Doodling class and want to read this book, Taking Flight.)

6. I'm always on time, if not a tad early.

7. I'm trying slow down this year (but hope to still be on time!).
Mindfulness is my "one little word" for the year.

8. I'm rather impulsive, thus why being more mindful will be good for me...and has been good for me already this year.

And my award is going to the one and only Luvlee! She has quite the stylish blog-a-roo!
Another blog I've just recently rediscovered is Michelle's. Talk about style! I learned about her blog through a mutual friend.

Blog award

I just received a blog award today!
Thanks Melissa. I have 2 Melissa's that follow me.
Must be a good luck charm!

There are a couple of conditions for the award:You have been TAGGED and want to participate? Then create a post where you post the 'LOVE BLOG' image. You should also blog the persons link that gave you the award and inform her/him that you accept the award.You can then choose 3 - 5 favourite blogs which you also link in your post, then each blogger will inform you that they have been tagged.

Please note: The aim of this action is that we bring unknown, good blogs to light, so I was asked not to blog fellow bloggers that already have 3,000 followers.
Again, I am not adding this requirement for those I'm passing the award on to; that choice is up to the recipients.

Now the hard part is choosing who to pass along the award to. I love followers, so I think this award is a nice way of creating visibility to some of us who are followed less and/or just starting out.

Here are some of my favorite blogs. Check them out! Some of them are new to me recently because of the BPC classes I'm taking, other's are ol' standby's that have been inspiring me for awhile now. Enjoy...and share the love!

Ami's Place
Inked Butterflies

Monday, January 24, 2011

Happy Hello Sprinkles

I can finally share this drafted blog post with you!
I like to be sure the recipient gets to see the card
IRL first before I post it on my blog and tell you about it.
A DF and I met for our coffee night the other night. It's always wonderful to get together and unwind over a cup of Panera coffee and a treat.
This was her card!


A DF shared this with me recently:
Happiness has to be cranked up; trouble is a self-starter.

This a card I made for her.

Stamps: Digi Image #30, Pure Innocence, SU Lots of Thoughts
Inks: Memento Tuxedo Black, SU Daffodil Delight
Paper: PTI white, DCWV Yellow text. CS, SU Blushing Bride Pink

Accessories: Sponge, glitter brads, copics, PTI sheer ribbon, SU Tag punch, SU Ticket corner punch, SU Daffodil Delight marker

I have been wanting this sweet lil' digi image for quite awhile. I finally remembered to look into purchasing it. Being it has been on my list to do for quite awhile (as in, before my spending freeze went into effect), I let myself buy it. I tried buying it during the holidays, but when I was there, she happened to be closed down for a few days during Christmas/New Years. I'm on a spending freeze for my hobbies until I can get caught up on my list of projects for this winter. I hate when spring approaches, and I still haven't gotten a head start on winter yet...

This is from Pure Innocence. She has the cutest images and I have a few of them in my collection already. This was made for a friend who loves cupcakes. I just couldn't wait to make it for her birthday in August, so I made it into a cheery hello card! :)

Happy day friends!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Energized and fresh

I love Project Life by Becky Higgins

Loving my new kitchen paint colors

Here's a glimpse of what it looked like before

The bottom blue has really changed. It's doesn't look like in the pictures, but it's now a more grey blue than the brighter blue it was. Maybe wishing just a tad bit that it was grayer, but this will be fine!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Painting the kitchen

I love Project Life by Becky Higgins

Today's picture:

The day has finally arrived! Time to paint the kitchen. These are my colors. We did not use Benjamin Moore paints however, b/c they were so super expensive. Just took these paint chips into our Menard's store and they mixed them up for us.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Wellness Journey, Week 3

Lisa Cohen's Wellness Jouney at Big Picture Classes

Week 3 layout: My biggest obstacle

I will be making this into a 2-page spread, the second page being my journal entry on notebook paper. I may have to have an official journal if this is going to be an exercise that works for me.
(see previous blog post about the journal entry.)

A lovely day indeed!

I love Project Life by Becky Higgins

Lisa Cohen's Wellness Jouney at Big Picture Classes

A 2 for 1 kind of day!!

Wow, I had a wonderful morning. A DF and I met up at a state park and cross country skied. It was awesome. A tad cold at first, but we quickly warmed up. Nature has such a beautiful way of clearing my head. I've felt like I've been in such a fog lately. Part of it has been a sense of discouragement with my running progress. Monday I switched to a different program and started from scratch. This was not at all satisfying. It didn't push me to my limit like the other program does. I need that. The intensity and sweat works to clear my mind, giving me the peace of mind and self image that helps make me confident for other daily choices I need to make. I'm going to switch back to my original program and scale back to week 5.

I did some jouraling about it last evening before I went to bed and came to this conclusion:

I want to do this.
I can do this.
I just have to be willing to work for it.

And so below is a photo that sums up my feelings.

I love how Mother Nature was able to
reflect her sense of calm into my heart today.

This little creek was still babbling away in places.
Amazing, given how cold it's been...and is. Today it's about 11*!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Kitchen painting fun begins

I love Project Life by Becky Higgins

Today's picture:

As you can see, DH is hard at work.
I was down in the basement working on pictures and came up to find this.
He did this once before when we were painting the basement walls.
We had a friend come that actually goes by Becky. She was wow'd by the
love we were bestowing upon her on her first visit to us! Then we told her the story of how I can't stand being called Becky (no offense to her, the name fits her perfectly. You know how a name just fits sometimes...and well, other times it just doesn't). Only by grandmother and uncle get away with it. But DH likes to use it to be funny.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011


I'm getting might close to 1,000 blog visits. Thank YOU for hopping by and taking time to read something here. I'm hoping it will correlate perfectly with finishing up a photo project so I can celebrate 2 things and host a
blog candy
post to CELEBRATE!

Hint, hint, if you follow me you'll get an extra chance to win my blog candy! :)

Hand written notes, lost art?

This week has opened my eyes to the beauty and power of hand-written notes. Saturday I received a letter in the mail from a friend who lives far away. We first met when her family lived about 45 minutes from us. I was so surprised to receive such a nice letter from her in response to my New Year's picture and letter I had sent them. I was struck by how wonderful it was to sit down and read a hand-written letter. And I immediately wanted to respond!! Here it is Tuesday and I still haven't. But it's on my list to do today. She doesn't have email, so this is the only way to correspond with her. Other than the telephone, I suppose...but that's not my favorite way to communicate!!

Then yesterday afternoon and evening, I kept finding these sweet little hand-written notes around the house.

DD1 is very responsive to my feelings. If I'm feeling yucky or sad or moody, she feels it and always responds with love. So while I was getting supper ready, I found a note in the fridge that said, "Your cool". And on the covered cookie plate, "I love you". And by my camera, "Your the best". Later in the evening, I found another "I love you" by my journal and one on my bedside table that said "Good Night!". She just knows when a person needs a little extra love. Now, I didn't go around the house all yesterday sighing and bemoaning the fact that I felt yucky, but being they were home early yesterday, it was more apparent than if they had come at their regular time!

Monday, January 17, 2011


Wow, today was a weird day. I just felt kind of frazzled and unfocused for some odd reason. I'm glad it's almost bedtime. Just one thing after another happened. Dumb stuff like dropping the spoon in the sauce, bonking my head on the cupboard door, forgetting this or that, etc. 'Nuf said.

I made these cookies Saturday. I love the idea of having "brownies" that are not ALL accounted for in the pan!!! KWIM??? Cookies can easily be eaten and unaccounted for, but brownies, OH MY. You take one out and right away there is an empty spot in the pan. So try these if you'd like your treats to be a little less accounted for!! And if you're having a day like mine, they might be just what you need!!

Now off to have some family time. I want to post more things, but they'll have to wait. Like I say, this day just had too many kinks in it.
Tomorrow is another day.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Scrapbooking daily "ohm"

I love Project Life by Becky Higgins

Becky Higgins has been requesting pictures of happy customers with their Project Life kits. My isn't the traditional type, holding my brand new box, but I thought up my own take on it.

Just as yoga brings a sense of calm into my day when I practice it, so Project Life brings a measure of daily scrapbooking "ohm" knowing I'm now keeping up with one aspect of our daily lives through this project.

I believe Amazon is currently sold out of her newest editions, but everyone involved is working on restocking the supply!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Ali inspired photo

I love Project Life by Becky Higgins

I thought I would share this photo from my date luncheon with my husband. It was inspired by Ali's picture. Her's captured so much more, especially with her OLW, but I love what it captured for me too, delicious food and a wonderful day with DH.
This is today's photo for Project Life.

I scored today and found these delightful footies on sale. I LOVE SmartWool socks as I've mentioned before! Slippers are OK, but going around in sock feet is my absolute favorite. No more cold toes with these on! These footies will be wonderful to wear with my black dress boots. Warmth without all the added thickness.

Have a wonderful weekend. ♥

Friday FIVE

Been a few Friday's since I did this, so let's get back in gear with five fabulous things I've loved/enjoyed/experienced this week.

1. Libraries. I love them. I love when I find a book on the new book shelf that is one I was wishing I could buy. Today I scored by finding the book, Cake Pops by Bakerella! DD1 was disappointed there were no penguins. Maybe on her blog? I'll have to check!

2. They do an awesome job. I've been trying to find a local place for developing since I'm doing Project Life and wanting my pictures yesterday even more so than usual! Today I tried a drugstore in town that has expanded and now includes a photo developing department. No deal. Their matte finish is very flat looking. And the pictures were dark. I compared them to the very same pictures from Shutterfly, so I know this for sure! Shutterfly pictures come super fast (like 3-4 days after sending in your order. Order Sat., rec'd in the mail on Wed.). Crazy. The lighting and colors are always vibrant and the matte version is beautiful. I've also done photobooks and love them too. Which reminds me, I need to start working on 2010 year-in-review books for my DDs.

3. Color. I can't wait to paint our kitchen next Friday. The colors I have now seem so drab. It was back in the day when I wasn't too daring with my paint color choices. I've since moved to bold and colorful. My dining room is red/chocolate, hall is a turquoise color, family room a golden yellow. Now my kitchen will be Panera-style orange and a grey/blue. Color makes rooms so personal.

4. DH's winter break. He's home more. And when he does go in to work, he comes home earlier. He takes one whole day off once a week and we do something together. Today we're going on a date to a quaint, touristy-type town. Lunch and a stroll through the town. Very relaxing.

5. Parenting. I love this journey. I'm learning so much along the way. Like how deep our love for our children really goes. You learn a little more about this as you watch your children go through rough experiences in their little lives. As you stand by to give them support and TLC and let them know that they can do something that seems so hard/impossible/fearful!