Friday, January 28, 2011

Makes Me Happy

These pretty in pink tulips make me happy.

Getting my niece's autograph after her school performance makes me happy.

Getting Scrapbooks, Etc. in my mailbox makes me happy.

Enjoying a tasty dinner not made by me makes me happy.

A freshly made bed makes me happy.

Cookies and cream ice cream makes me happy.

Fridays make me happy.

I hope something is making you happy today.

Have a great weekend.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

2nd Annual Day of Fun

They day D and I spent together was super fun. For her birthday, I gave her an "invitation" to the 2nd Annual Day of Fun. She got to choose a place to have lunch, an activity and a book at Barnes.

I whipped up this layout to document the day. Everything I used came from the Napa Valley kit from Studio Calico, which is why I was able to complete it so quickly.

1) I love, love the red rosettes from Making Memories that are in the kit. So pretty.
2) There's also a great alphabet clear stamp set, which I used for the title in this layout.
3) I took a cotton swab and dipped it in white paint and randomly added dots to the page. I wanted to add some whimsy and feeling of winter.
4) I've been testing out Photoshop Elements and am really liking the ability to print different sized photos.
5) I wrote my journaling in Word and printed it on cardstock. I've been doing this for the Yesterday and Today class and I like how it looks. But I will always strongly believe that using one's own handwriting is important and should be used as much as possible.

Onto the journaling.



I want to remember when I called you the morning of our day together and you were so excited. Ready and raring to go. Love your enthusiasm.

I want to remember that you saved a new sweater and leggings to wear on our day together. 

I want to remember how you verified that you got to have all three choices; lunch, an activity and a book. Not just one of the three.

I want to remember being at Macaroni Grill and you explaining to me who all the characters are in Avatar on the butcher paper tablecloth. You had me guess how to spell their names; like Toph, Aang and Saka.

I want to remember that you ordered macaroni and cheese, just like last year.

I want to remember browsing the stacks at Barnes and Noble. We spent about an hour looking at books and kits and activity books. You decided to get an American Girl paper doll kit.

I want to remember seeing you race ahead of me at the ice skating rink. You were fast!

I want to remember how, after awhile, you would wait up for me and we would go around together.

I want to remember running from the car to our destination and back because it was so dang cold.

I want to remember spending this day with you.

I want to remember celebrating you turning eight.

January 2011

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Ten on Tuesday

1) I had a great time with D this weekend. More on that tomorrow.

2) I watched Emma on Masterpiece Theatre. What a delightfully romantic movie. I love the way they speak and dress. For a moment, I thought about the benefits of what seemed like a simpler time.

3) My get moving goal for the year is going well. I realized I needed to start small. So, I'm working out every other day for now. Hopefully, I'll advance to everyday.

4) Like I said, I like thinking about a simpler time. I'm feeling a tad bit overwhelmed by all the places I'm logged into; two email accounts, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, numerous scrap galleries and on and on.
Does anyone else feel this way or is it just me?

5) I put Freedom aside. I'm reading The Piano Teacher now.

6) You can find a lot of inspiration on the Studio Calico blog hop. And they're giving stuff away. Fun, fun! Definitely something to check out.

7) Even though it's freezing outside, I've been craving ice cream!

8) Winter CHA is almost here. Tons of new scrappy products are on the way. Wahoo! Looking forward to the CHA Winter Runway that Two Peas is hosting. I love their product videos.

9) I've been wanting to play Clue. Remember this game? I used to play it all the time growing up. Hopefully, this weekend I will convince people to play with me.

10) I've been enjoying author interviews on BN Studio.

Friday, January 21, 2011


Having a little fun with Photobooth

On the grocery list: Pumpernickel bread (loving this bread right now)
On the TV: Grey's Anatomy
On the nightstand: A pile of magazines passed on from my Mom
On the to do list: Clean out my car trunk (exciting, I know)
On the scrap table: A page for my Yesterday and Today class about a challenging time
On the movie list: The King's Speech
On the dinner plate: A spinach salad and a Boca burger

I'm excited to be hanging out with D tomorrow. We're having lunch, going ice skating and browsing the stacks at Barnes and Noble. Sounds like a perfect day to me. I hope everyone has a great weekend. 

What does everyone else have planned? 

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

October 2010 Mini Album

Since October is my favorite month, I decided to do something a bit different to tell the story of the month. I made a mini-album with inspiration from Kelly Purkey. During the month, I saved everything, like menus, ticket stubs, brochures, etc. and I kept it all in a manila envelope. Having it all in one place makes it much easier to get started. I decided to use a 8 1/2 x 11 binder album from American Crafts.

When possible I took my journaling directly from my blog, like for this page about running a 5k.

I included different sizes and layers, like this photo adhered to a transparency, along with my number from the race. I used decorative tape to add a bit of journaling about the photo.

I included a sheet of paper my brother made instructing me on how to get to the L and what stop to get off at it, etc.  because I was so nervous about it. He even made drawings! I know I'll love looking back on this years down the road.

I included a picture of my favorite pizza, along with the menu.

This is one of my favorite pages from the book. I used a tag to write the journaling and then I tucked it behind the photo. 

There are so many options on the size of album to use. You can easily do this in a smaller form. I might consider that the next time. There are also many options on what ephemera to include. I'm not the best at remembering to keep it, so this part was harder for me. This was a great way to capture more of the everyday that often gets missed on my other pages.

Pick your favorite month, a month you know you'll want to remember, or be completely random about it and then start collecting all the good stuff. This is definitely a project you'll be glad you tackled.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Ten on Tuesday

1) I had a great time at the Allison McGhee event. So cool to listen to an author read from her work and to answer fun questions like what does your typical day look like. I finally got the nerve to ask her for a photo once I was bundled up and ready to leave.

2) I found my cooking mojo again. Yesterday, I made couscous, scallions, dried cranberries and feta for lunch. For dinner, I made black bean, green peppers and mushroom quesadillas. Delish.

3) I was on the highway yesterday and witnessed a car accident in my rearview mirror. So completely scary. A car moved into the left lane without looking and hit the side of a semi. I honestly don't know how I wasn't enveloped into the accident vortex.

4) I downloaded a trial of Photoshop Elements. Totally overwhelming. I need to carve out some serious time to play and figure it all out.

5) I'm excited for the 2nd Annual Day O' Fun with my niece. For her birthday gift from me she gets to choose a place to have lunch, an activity, and a book. Really love this idea.

6) Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday was yesterday. One of my favorite quotes of his is, "Everyone can be great because everyone can serve."

7) Last week was a roller coaster of emotions. I'm not a big fan of roller coasters. I imagine most of my weeks will be like this until I find a new job. I hope to get better at managing the ups and downs.

8) This weekend, I deep cleaned. Everything is in its place. Love it.

9) I'm starting a class this week. I'm nervous for the first day. I hate first days. I hate not knowing what to expect. It's been a long time since I've had a first day. Thanks to Amy, I'm reciting this mantra and it's helping. Breathe. Believe. Release. Receive.

10) On the top of my to do list this week: Buy some fresh flowers.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Oh Winter

How I am so sick of thee.
Of the constant snow.
One to three inches here.
Three to four inches there.
Congratulations by the way on achieving the snowiest winter ever (and it's only January).
Of how everything is covered in white and gray.
Of how all color has been sucked out of everywhere.
Of how everything under foot is slushy and wet.
Of how a quick errand becomes a huge production, because all the side streets are never fully plowed.
Of how my skin is void of moisture.
Of how I can't go outside without numerous layers.
Oh Winter
You can't leave soon enough.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Catching Up

I got a bit behind in creating layouts for each month in 2010. I finally got July, August and September finished. I'm really liking how they turned out. They're all quite different from each other, except for the little photos on each one. I'm obsessed with little photos lately.

I'm loving the new KI Memories calendar pages that I used as the base. It may be hard to see in the photo, but there's stitching all along the border. Very fun detail. 

I'm loving the dark background and the white journaling. I also love the colors in this Cosmo Cricket collection. Very rich and pretty. 

I'm loving the repetition of the circles and the red misting.

Feels good to have these finished and in an album. I'll be sharing October soon. I did something a bit different for that month.

Have a great Wednesday!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Ten on Tuesday (well 11, for 1.11.11)

1) We celebrated my niece's birthday this weekend, with two, count them, two parties! I can't believe she's 8. Right now, she's totally into all things crafty and watching Avatar, (not the movie, but a children's cartoon).

2) One of the highlights of 2010 was attending a Josh Ritter concert. His tour didn't bring him back to my part of the world...until now! I'm going to his concert next month and I can't wait.

3) I'm attending an event tonight where Allison McGhee will be speaking. She's one of my favorite authors. She's also an excellent teacher. I took a class from her at The Loft and it was fabulous. I'm not sure what happened, but I haven't written anything fictional in a long time. I hope to get back into it this year. Maybe Allison will inspire me.

4) It's snowing...again. Ugh. At least it was sunny this weekend. Even though sun means bitter cold, I definitely welcome some vitamin D and clear skies after so many gray days.

5) Love these two posts by Elise and Ali sharing everyday photos from their weekends. Definitely need to do more of this.

6) My Mom made me a fleece blanket. It's so cozy. Perfect for cuddling up in for a nap. It's so fun to get a gift for no reason.

7) I've been looking through old photos (non-digital) for my Yesterday and Today class with Ali Edwards. It's amazing what emotions/feelings emerge looking at a snapshot I haven't looked at in awhile. So many cool stories yet to be told.

8) I wish we could enjoy our holidays more before stores start selling the next one. There's Valentine's stuff everywhere. Sigh.

9) One of the items on my 33 List was to refrain from eating out for a month. I know it's only the 11th, but so far, so good for the month of January. I'll take little successes where I can get them.

10) I'm in a cooking slump. None of my usual favorites sound good. Anyone eating anything good lately? I'd love some new, tasty recipes.

and one extra for 1.11.11

11) Thank you so much for all the great comments on my Exciting News post. I so enjoyed reading each of them.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Exciting News

Yesterday, I received an email from Angie Lucas at Ella Publishing saying I had been chosen as the November winner of the 8 is Enough challenge. They are a bit behind in posting the winners, but I don't mind. I was thrilled! Such fun news! 

The challenge is to use only 8 products on 4 layouts. You can see the layouts I created, a description of my process and a supply list, on their site here

If you're a scrapper, you should definitely participate in this challenge. I had a lot of fun and it's a great way to use up product. 

Have a great weekend! 

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Welcome 2011-The Layout

The American Crafts challenge this week is to create a project with a new year theme. I thought it would be fun to get my goals for 2011 down on a layout. A super simple page using punched circles with a little bit of fun in the middle of each one. I also couldn't resist using their new decorative tape. So fun! I think I'll put this layout on my scrap desk, so I can see it easily. A good reminder throughout the year.

Here is a close-up.

American Crafts: 
Paper: Dear Lizzy Spring and Enchanted, Blue Skies, Abode
Thickers: Delight
Flair: Dear Lizzy Springy and Blue Skies Relax
Ribbon: Dear Lizzy Leafy and Lovely
Button: Glitter Baby Girl
Brad: Pearl White
Mixtape: Stream

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Ten on Tuesday

Ten on Tuesday is back!

1) I've seen several movies the last week. I saw Despicable Me, Going the Distance, The Prestige and The American. They were all ho hum, except for The American, which was just awful. Really awful.
Stay far, far away from this one.

2) I'm excited about my shows returning with new episodes. I got hooked on a new one. It's called V. There was a mini marathon this past weekend. It's about a bunch of human looking aliens who are trying to take over the world. It's quite ridiculous, but it hooked me.

3) I got a blender for Christmas. I've been whipping up a bunch of smoothies. I haven't found the perfect concoction yet, but I'll keep trying.

4) I am trudging through Franzen's Freedom. I'm enjoying it, but it's dense.

5) One of my Mom's friends gets a lot of magazines and once she's finished with them, she gives them to my Mom and then my Mom gives them to me and my sister. It's a great system. But I got Scrapbooks, Etc. for Christmas and I'm so excited to get my very own magazine in my mailbox.

6) Since it's unlikely that I'll get to go away to a warm place, I'm going to try and substitute this place and hope it does the trick.

7) I'm really freaked out by all the birds falling from the sky. Anyone else?

8) I'm going through some of my work clothes and making a pile to give to Dress for Success. I hope that they help someone.

9) I didn't list this as one of my goals for the year, but I'd like to volunteer more. I've been researching places and Dress for Success is on my list.

10) I've been praying for two friends who have children who are really sick. If you're the praying kind, please pray for them too. Many thanks.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Welcome 2011

Welcome 2011. Like many people at the beginning of a new year, I pause to reflect on the year past and I think about how I want the new year to be like, to be different, to be better. Since I'm looking for work, I have a whole long list of goals for that and I won't be sharing those. But I have four goals that will touch on all parts of my life. I honestly didn't think long and hard about these. They came to me fairly quickly. We'll see how it goes...

SHAKE UP THE BLOG: I've been blogging for a year now and it's been a great experience. I'm ready to take it up a notch. I'm going to take some time over the next few months to change up the look of the blog.

FIGURE OUT A MOVEMENT PLAN: As I am getting older, my body is changing and I'm not able to eat whatever I want anymore. Big bummer! I need to figure out a plan to move. Especially in the winter. Once spring comes, it all becomes so much easier. For now, I'm thinking 2-3 times a week for 30 minutes. Since we have so much snow, walking outside isn't practical. Thinking about exercise DVDs, thinking about community education programs, thinking about walking the mall. We'll see what happens.

REDUCE MY IMPACT: I recently watched "No Impact Man." A family trying to reduce their impact on the world. What an interesting project. I like this idea. There's no way I can do everything they did. I like my electricity. I've done a lot this past year already, like no more bottled water, no paper napkins, eating locally and using safer washing products. But I am very interested in continuing to reduce my impact. I like the idea of powering down, of using less electricity. Over the holidays, I unplugged, no email/internet/TV, and amazingly the world didn't end. I like the idea of buying less, which currently works well not having a job. I like the idea of less trash, specifically surrounding packaging from food. Looking forward to this challenge.

BE KIND TO MYSELF: This may sound selfish. But the last few months have been stressful and tough. I've found during this time that I've been really hard on myself. I need to remind myself that I'm a good person. That I have a lot to offer the world. That ultimately I'm more than any job.

So, that's it. These are my goals. I'll share how it's going throughout the year. Also, a big thank you to my nieces for their help in the above photo. They're always up for my photo antics.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy Birthday Dear Blog!

I started my blog a year ago today. What a year it has been! I've loved being in this space. A big thank you to everyone who stops by. You'll see some exciting (hopefully) changes in the new year.

Best wishes for a joyful and peaceful 2011.