Thursday, December 31

Happy New Year....

As this year comes to a close and a new one begins... I want to thank you for stopping for a visit, to see what we've been up to... thank you soooooo much for your lovely warm comments... It has been such a pleasure getting to know more of you this year... you have blessed my life more than you know...

As for the New Year... I'm excited to see what will unfold... it's always nice to start a new year... old things are past and new things begin. As for you... I hope your year is filled with crazy-wonderful {{everyday}} memories that last a life time.

From our home to yours...
Happy Happy New Year !

Monday, December 28


Rainee was so thrilled about Christmas, she even went to bed early without hesitation Christmas Eve... the next morning, she said she heard Santa on the roof!!! It was very exciting!!!

We did have a very lovely Christmas! Rainee woke early over joyed... opening her stocking first, while she waited for daddy to wake up, and mommy to make coffee... and of course take a few photos before all the packages were opened and there was wrapping paper everywhere!!!

She opened Santa's first... and got the Zhu Zhu pet stuff she asked Santa for... plus some other fun things... but once the Santa presents were opened she opened the BIG gift from mommy and daddy... the remote control TUNDRA TRUCK!!! Which since opened... has been her favorite thing to play with - - well at least until the batteries run out!!! LOL!

After opening presents and breakfast, we got ready for our annual open house potluck. And although I love cooking... I've always made it easy on myself when it came to the turkey. I would choose a Honey Baked Turkey, which I only had to put in the oven for 2 hours... because to be honest turkeys are a bit intimidting... but this year, I decided to attempt it... and it turned out delicious!!! It made for the perfect sandwich along side all the yummy things everyone brought.

After we ate and ate and ate... Rainee opened more gifts!! Which she loved... and after the last one, she wanted to know if there were any more... lol!!! Gotta love her!! All in all... it was beautiful day... full of family, friends, food, lovely weather... and presents that lit up my daughters face. We had a wonderful Christmas.

Now... over the next several days we'll be doing some fun things with Rainee before she has to go back to school... I'm goint to try to get some scrapbooking done and blog posts... but if neither happen... I hope you have a safe and happy new year!!!

Tuesday, December 22

Mom Do You Have Quarters??? Please Mom!!

Before I talk about my lo... I want to appologise for not being around... Rainee has been sick off and on... can I just say... I hate it when parents let their kid go to school sick!... That's how this started for Rainee... she was fine... then start to get a cold... then fine again... and then... at the Christmas party... her teacher brought her sick kid... ugh... can I tell you I was mad!!! When she told me, I made sure Rainee to stayed away from her daughter... but even though she did... with her daughter participating in all the fun... those germs lingered... and the next morning... Rainee wasn't feeling great and by the end of the day... she had a sore throat!!! Boy I hate it when parents do that.... and what makes it worse... it's right before Christmas... and it's vacation... she should be having fun... but instead... we're both up all night taking care of her fever... honestly... I'm bugged!!! I'm hoping she'll be better today... I have some fun stuff planned, but it won't happen if she's not feeling well. Enough about sick kids and their parents... and making mine sick... just ugh... that's all I can say!!!

So besides Rainee not feeling well, it's Christmas time, with all the things you NEED TO get done and all the things you WANT TO get done... we've been busy here!!! I have lots of photos... but the scrapping well it's not been on the top of my list....

But yesterday while Rainee had a nap, I did a layout for These Are A Few Of My Favorite Things... new challenge... Your Favorite Car... you have to read all about it... it's fun... but for mine... well... I didn't do my favorite... I did Rainee's!!!

Ya know when you go to the store and you see those fun little rides for kids... it could be a ride with Tiger, a dinosaur or a fun little car..... well Rainee loves them... and she has to go on it every time... but only if mama has some quarters... 90% of the time I do. It's such a fun little everyday thing which makes for a pleasant few moments... which can make for a very pleasant child... simple... fun... and smiles all around!!! Anyway... here's my lo... of Rainee in a truck when we were at Toys R Us recently... too much fun!!!

As for posting... it may be a few days before I get to it again... depending on Rainee, and of course how smoothly things go with getting ready for Christmas... at least you'll know why!!! I hope these last days before Christmas are filled with wonderful memories, to make for a really lovely Christmas...

(Materials: Paper: Bazzil, Making Memories, Ribbon: Wrights, Stickers: Creative Imaginations, DCWV, Creative Memories, Misc)

Saturday, December 19

Christmas Performance & Party...

Rainee's Christmas performance (Thursday) and Christmas party (Friday), went off wonderfully... well... almost... She woke up Thursday, so excited about her performance... it was just the cutest thing ever and couldn't wait for it to start.... we sat in the front row (of course) and everything seemed to be going fine... although she wasn't smiling and I couldn't figure out why... then at the very last song... We Wish You A Merry Christmas... she started crying.... can I just say my heart was breaking... then as they were letting some of the kids leave I gave her a hug and talked to her... and she said... 'I'm scared... my tummy really hurts!!'... oh no!!!! What's a mommy to do... have her follow the class out... take her out... it all happened so fast... and then she was off to class to get their stuff to take home...

We went around to meet her... and she was still very sad... and came running to me... telling me again her tummy hurt... and I'm sad now too... because if she's sick, she will miss out again on the party... like she did for Thanksgiving Feast... my poor baby!!! Then, Anessa, Rainee's friend came over and gave her a big hug and asked her what was wrong... while listening to their conversation, we figured out she had stage fright... poor thing!!! But just in case... we were going to make her take it easy, so she could go to the party on Friday....

Friday... the party!!! She woke up fine!!! Yeah!!! The party was a combination of the morning and afternoon classes... and they had a great time!! All in all, there was 44 kids, 2 teachers and 10 parents in one little classroom room... but the teachers had it all set up with activity centers for kids to do different things... play with play-dough, winter bingo, the listening center with holiday books... and for their snack later... they made peanut butter & jelly Raindeer sandwiches and decorated cookies... it was sooooooo organized and the kids had such a great time... you'd never know there was 56 people in one classroom!!! Oh plus Santa came and each kid was able to take a picture with him and whisper their wishes to him... it was the cutest!!! Rainee had the best time!!!! Yeah... she wasn't sick!!!

When it came to what to give the teachers... Rainee wanted to give them the Gingerbread Plate card... so we made them together... it was so fun doing them with her!!! We made them a bit different than last years YouTube Video... This year, she wanted to do polka dot plates... I think they turned out great... Rainee was really happy with them... and the teachers??? They just loved them!!!

Now as for Christmas Vacation... I don't know what we'll be doing, but I'm sure I'll come up with something fun while she's out of school!!! What are your plans??? Any suggestions??? For now... I'm off to get Rainee.... she's up and ready for the day!!! Have a good one!!!

Wednesday, December 16

Thank You & Congrats...

First I want to say Thank you Thank you Thank you to Julie for having me as the guest designer at ThereAreA FewOf MyFavoriteThings... I had such fun!!!! I really enjoyed it!!

I also wanted to give a toot of Congratulations for my friend Jana.... OMG... I can't beging to tell you how excited I was to that she is the winner of the Favorite Holiday over at ThereAreA FewOf MyFavoriteThings... Here is the front cover of her winning mini book, but you have to go to her blog to appreciate the beauty of her mini book... it is just sooooooo crazy gorgeous!!!

I also wanted to share the new Challenge at ThereAreA FewOf MyFavoriteThings is... your favorite car... go check it out and see the wonderful designs from the design team members... they are amazing... Julie is giving gift certificate for the winner... so go check it out... it's so much fun!!!

Tuesday, December 15

Rainee Says:

After I took Rainee to school this morning, Steve and I notice there was something strange going on with the top of Champs head... and when we took a closer look... we realized Rainee had given Champ a hair cut... it wasn't much, but you definitely could tell it was cut. Steve was fuming... I enjoyed watching stomping around the room, it was pretty funny... and all he kept saying was... "she's gonna get it when she gets home"...

Sooooooo Steve had cooled down, by the time Rainee got home... and we both sat down with her for a little chat... asking why??? And her exact words were...

"He had some hair sticking up and it needed cutting."

...that was it... simple and to the point... we then explained why we don't cut Champy-boy's hair... she felt really bad and went to sit with him for awhile giving him a big hugs... with lots of kisses of course!!!

You never know what a day will bring being a mama.

Sunday, December 13

What's Cooking Sun{day}...

This week, has been full of so many things I've hardly been able to take a breath... so today I had to stop and do something I wanted to do... and I wanted to bake a pie...

I baked a homemade apple pie, with the best crust recipe ever from my friend Becky and some yummy granny smith apples. It was perfection, I’m telling you. Sheer and utter perfection.

When I pulled the piping hot pie from the oven, the mixture of sugar and cinnamon bubbling and spilling over the sides plus there was that lovely the scent of baked apples filling the air. And you should have seen my family anxiously waited for it to cool, for their slice of the heavenly creation and a scoop of vanilla bean ice cream.

It was so beautiful, I almost didn’t want to cut into it. After all, you can’t have your pie and eat it, too. Rainee thought it was so pretty she asked to take a picture of it, which of course we did. She moved around some of Christmas decorations to make it look pretty... It was beautiful...

Once cooled, I finally did the honors, serving a generous slice topped with the ice cream. I loved watching it melt down the sides of the pie. This moment was heavenly... apple pie, ice cream and sitting in front of a warm cozy fire with my family... and then... everyone begged for a second slice.

This is the first of many Christmas pies I'll be baking... and this was the best treat ever after the week I had. I am always amazed by Martha Stewart... then there's me and my little pie.. is nothing compared to Martha. She would not only have made the pie crust, but picked the apples from her yard, and then churned the delicious homemade ice cream... but then that's Martha! As for me??? I'm enjoying the feeling of accomplishment... it's nice to be able to say... "Job, well done!!"... after a week where I didn't feel I'd accomplished anything...

As I sit eating my lovely, delicious pie I'm reminded of a favorite verse... “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart...” Colossians 3:23.... and on that note... all any of us can do is our best at whatever we put our hands to...

Becky's Famous Pie Crust ~
4 Cup Flour
1 tsp. Sugar
1 tsp. Vinegar
1/2 Cup COLD Water
1 3/4 Cup Veg. Shortening
1 Egg
2 tsp. Salt

  • With a fork mix, flour, shortening, sugar, & salt together until crumbly.
  • In a small bowl mix together, water, vinegar & egg.
  • Add egg mixture to flour mixture. Mix together with fork until moist.
  • Form into 4 evenly divided balls, and flatten. Cover with plastic wrap.
  • Chill for at least 15 minutes.
  • Roll out, place in pie pan.
  • While making pie filling, put pie crust in freezer.
  • Remove pie crust from freezer and fill with desired pie filling.
  • Bake according to desired pie recipe.
  • If crust edges get too brown before pie is done, put foil over edges.
  • Left over pie crust can be frozen.

Apple Pie Filling ~ (9inch pie pan)
6 Cup Granny Smith Apples
3/4 Cup Sugar
3 Tbspn Flour
1/2 tsp Cinnamon
1/2 tsp Nutmeg
Dash Salt

  • Heat oven at 425º.
  • In a bowl combine apples, sugar, flour, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt. Toss lightly.
  • Place into prepared pie crust.
  • Place back in freezer, while making Streusel Topping.

Streusel Topping ~
3/4 Cup Flour
1/2 tsp. Cinnamon
1/2 Cup Butter
1/2 Cup Brown Sugar (firmly packed)

  • Combine all ingredients with a fork until crumbly.
  • Take pie out of freezer.
  • Sprinkle over fruit filling. Covering all of the fruit.
  • Before placing in oven, brush the crust surface with an egg wash for a golden brown crust.
  • Bake for a total of 45 minutes. At 35 minutes cover topping to prevent topping from burning.
For a double crust pie.... after putting pie filling in pie tin, place pie back in the freezer while you roll out crust for the pie top. Take pie out of freezer and pinch edges together. Make slits in pie top crust for steam to escape. Place pie in the freezer one more time before baking for about 5 minutes... then before placing in oven, brush the crust surface with an egg wash for a golden brown crust.

Pie crust secret... for those of you who have never made pie crusts... or for those of you have and swore you would never do it again, because it never turns out... it isn't flaky...HERE'S THE SECRET... your crust isn't cold... for a lovely flaky crust you want your crust to be cold. That is why you continue to place your pie/crust in the freezer. You will be amazed at the difference this simple little thing will do for your crust... Let me know how it turns out!!! Happy pie making!!! Enjoy!!!

Friday, December 4

2 Thanksgivings...

At our {early} Thanksgiving dinner, here is Rainee with her cute cute cute turkey... she was so patient waiting waiting waiting for 'her guests'.... she kept saying... 'when are they going to get here???'... and just before they did she said, 'hey, mom... look how very hungry I am!!!'.... adorable... I could gobble her up!!! The other is our family dinner... at our new home... it was such a nice time. And the last lo is from our Thanksgiving dinner with Kathleen's family... Kathleen's sister Stephanie made the whole dinner... and it was her 25th birthday... I think she did a wonderful job!!! I have to say it was soooooo nice not having to actually cook on Thanksgiving... I love it!!! We have been blessed this year and I for one am so very grateful for all we have... God is good!

We have a full weekend... I'm taking Rainee and her friend to HomeDepot to the fun projects they have on the first Saturday of every month... Rainee loves doing this, and this time she has a friend coming... then we're going to Michaels Craft Store to do more fun free crafts... If we have time we're going to go to Bass Pro Shop to do their craft... It's such a fun thing to do with Rainee and they are all free... so it makes for a fun thrifty way to spend the day, during the holidays!!! I'm working on some more freelance holiday ads for some of my faithful customers... AND... today I got some more great products from Creative Imaginations to do some more projects for them.. I think I'm going to have a very full full full weekend... but ya know I can't wait!!! Hoping you have a marvelous weekend!!!

Thursday, December 3

Little Toot!

Just found out my layout for 'favorite holiday' is on the Top 10 List and Top 10 Votes over at TwoPeas... I've never been in the the Top 10 before... very excited!! whoohooooo!

Tuesday, December 1

December, So Many Things To Share...

I have several thing I want to share with you, but first I want to say.. Happy December 1st... I hope your month is filled with rich blessing, joy, time with family & friends... and you get everything on your list!

Okay so I have to say.... yeah!!! I made the Catwalk over at ScrapInStyle for my favorite holiday layout, for the WhatIsYourFaveThing challenge!!! Since the challenge was just posted you have plenty of time to join in... it would be wonderful if you did!!! Anyway, very excited about the Catwalk... and even though I have to go to jury duty this morning... I have to say, it's helped to make my day better!!! yeah!

I will be changing my blog design sometime this week... for the holidays! And putting on some Christmas music... just didn't get to it today... Ahhhhhh.... it's started... too many things to do!!!

Next I'm excited about doing my December Daily book. I don't know about you, but I've always loved seeing what Ali Edwards does with hers and wish I'd done it... Last year my friend Jen's at did one and it was fabulous!!! As for mine... I made it... VERY simple... since it's the first year I'm doing it... I decided that almost important thing for me was the pictures... so I made almost every page with the same sketch just different paper... there will be a few different... I needed it to easy... so I would get it done. So over the next several weeks I'll be showing you my VERY simple December Daily layouts.

Next I wanted to share my 2 favorite things I do every year for Rainee and well, Santa Claus... The first one is Rainee's List for Santa... whenever we go shopping or she sees something on TV... that she really wants, she says... 'Mommy can you put that on my list!'... I make a note of it and when it get closer to Christmas ... I make a Santa's List to put them on... it's been a great help not only for 'Santa', but also for mommy, grandma and the aunts/uncles. Rainee loves looking at it and has me read the things she's put on it... it's adorable. I also make sure to tell her, that just because it's on the list, doesn't mean she's going to get everything on the list... and she says... 'I know, but can we put it on my Birthday list?'.... to which I say... yes... and make a Birthday List lo for her to put the things she didn't get for Christmas on it.... it's been our thing... and it's worked out really well... so of course I just had to share it with you.

The other thing is the... Naughty or Nice List. It's something that helps show Rainee how good she is... and also,for when she's naughty. Rainee is generally very good but there are moment, like with any kid... that well, she isn't. The thing I like about our naughty list is... when she knows she's been bad, she comes to me and wants to pray for Jesus to forgive her for being bad and to help her be better. We've talked about this a lot, and she knows that when she asks for forgiveness, Jesus forgives her, and forgets it ever happened... soooooooooooo of course on our naughty list... we too have to wipe it clean too. She knows it's been there, but she also knows it's forgotten....

To go along with the Naughty or Nice list I found something I just have to share with you... it's a Naughty or Nice list with Santa actually showing your child on his list... it's really pretty cute!!! When Rainee saw it, she nearly fell out of her chair.... it was soooooooo much fun!!! So, make sure to check this out.... Santa's List ... seriously, your child's face will be beaming!!!

Have a lovely lovely day!

Monday, November 30

What's Your Favorite...

As you know I'm honored to be the Guest Designer over at WhatIsYourFaveThing and for this next challenge... Julie thought it would be the perfect time to do... What's your favorite Holiday!!!! I know you all have favorite things about each holiday, but what is your favorite??? Valentine's Day, Easter, Christmas, Thanksgiving... whatever it is join in the fun and make anything you want... a card, a scrapbook layout or a holiday project... anything to show off your favorite holiday! There are 2 prizes... a gift certificate to and a surprise from me!! So come on over and join in this fun challenge...

Anyway... here's mine... my favorite holiday is Christmas!!! I couldn't decide on what part of Christmas was my favorite for the layout. Which part of the holiday best represented my love of the holiday... so I decided to make a Christmas Tree with all my favorite traditions under each ornament... like pictures with Santa... decorating the tree... putting up Christmas lights! You know all the traditions which make Christmas special!

So... pop on over... and share your favorite... I know I can't wait to see what you come up with!!!!

Sunday, November 29

What's Cooking Sun{day}

One of my fondest memories of my grandmother, is helping her make something yummy. She was a wonderful cook... and I want to pass on the tradition of making cooking fun with Rainee... The other day I emailed my Aunt Dolly to send me some recipes... some of her favorites and my grandmothers. My aunt sent me several (hand written) recipes... and I could hardly wait to make them. After going through them, I thought I'd make the Coffee Cake first... Steve loves coffee cake and whenever we go to Starbucks, he is sure to get some... so this was perfect. Now he can have coffee cake at home.

This morning before Steve woke up, Rainee and I quietly went into the kitchen and made the Coffee Cake. Rainee had such fun, especially when she saw how much 'sugar' was in the cake!!! She couldn't wait until it was done, so she could take a bite... she loves sugar, but then what kid doesn't?? So, between Rainee and Steve... this recipe was a BIG BIG hit!! Rainee kept saying... mommy this cake is the bomb!!! We make the best stuff together!!! Steve said it was sooooooo much better than the Starbucks coffee cake... which, wow, is a huge complement... because theirs is really good.

I'm sooooo happy I asked my aunt for some recipes... even now, I can't wait to try the others!!! Do you have some family favorites you don't have in your recipe box??? If so, you might want to call your mom, grandmother, aunt, sister, cousin... to make sure you have them to pass along... they are something to cherish...

Here's a recipe from my family to yours... this is for when you want something easy, sweet... and delicious. Enjoy!!! Let me know if you liked it... bye for now.... I'm off for another cup of coffee and just one more slice... Thank you Aunt Dolly!

Coffee Cake

1 Cup Sugar
2 Cups Flour
3 tsp. Baking Powder
2 Tbsp. Vegetable Oil
1 Egg
1 Cup Milk
1 tsp. Vanilla
1/2 tsp. Salt
  • Preheat oven to 350º. Prepare 11"x17"x2" baking pan OR a bunt pan.
  • In medium bowl, using an electric mixer, mix above ingredients together.
  • Pour batter in the prepared pan.
1 Cup Brown Sugar
1 tsp. Cinnamon
4-5 Tbsp. Melted Butter over top
  • Combine together and sprinkle it over the top of the batter.
Bake cobbler for 25-30 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.
1/8 Cup Milk
1 Cup Confectioners' Sugar (powdered sugar)
  • Mix together, then swirl a thin glaze over cake while it's still warm (not hot).

Thursday, November 26

Happy Thanksgiving...

Thanksgiving... today & every day I'm thankful for Steve & Rainee. Even though there are many days when they bug each other... and days when Rainee seems to be whining all day & Steve gets cranky over the simplest things... even then... I'm thankful! I'm thankful for the ability to change my attitude, when I see & take in the everyday blessings all around me!

I am also thankful for my father... over the many years of my life, he has always been there for me. He would do anything to make sure I was taken care of. If I needed something moved, my car needed fixing, to unclog a sink or just listen to me... he has always been there taking care of me. He has always been a care taker... taking care of each of kids... even now, living in a Retirement Home he cares for those who are worse off than he is. He gives everything he has... without question never asking for anything in return.... I am grateful my life has been blessed with his kindness, the richness of his giving heart and his unconditional love. I hope in my life I will be a reflection of his wonderful qualities... Thank you dad... for being an example to live by! I miss you, love you and am so very thankful for you!

I am also so very thankful for each of you who come here... I am thankful for your kind hearts and your thoughtful words. I am delighted, blessed and grateful our lives have crossed... I know my life is better for being touched by you!!! Thank you!!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 25

More... Fun In The Dirt...

Really quick before my day starts... I thought I'd share one more layout with Rainee playing in the dirt... I couldn't resist these photos... Plus I wanted to use some of my new favorite products... I love love love the corrugated letter by Jillibean Soup... they are soooooo much fun... and I'm really enjoying the Fancy Pants felt... I also have some Fancy Pants Christmas felt I can't wait to use...

Do you have any new favorites... or something you can't wait to use??

(Materials: Paper: My Minds Eye, DCWV, Jillibean Soup, Rainee Tablet of School Paper, Letter Stickers: Making Memories, Letters: Jillibean Soup, Felt: Fancy Pants, Button: Vintage, Thread: Wrights)

Tuesday, November 24

Gobble Gobble News...

So I told you about Rainee's Thanksgiving Feast... and how excited she was about it???? Well, on Thursday, she came home sick and still had a fever Friday... so we completely missed out on the feast. She was really upset & I was so sad for her. She was still sick on Saturday and it looked like we weren't going to have our family dinner on Sunday... but by the end of Saturday, her fever had broken and the family party was going on as planned!!!

All day Sunday Rainee kept asking when are the guest coming... is the party starting??? She was so excited about everyone coming!!! We had a great time... Steve did a deep fried turkey and I made everything else... Rainee sure was happy once everyone was here... I just had to get her playing around the table with her turkey.... 'gobble gobble I'm sure hungry!'... it was too too cute!!!

Yesterday was a day of rest, plus a little left over dishes... we were all pretty exhausted. I love doing Thanksgiving dinner, but I seem to do the going going going thing for days... that when it's all done & everyone is gone... I crash! So having a day to do nothing... sure was a nice thing!!!

Our week is still pretty full... we still have a lot going on over the next few days... Steve has something planned for today, don't know what... but I'm sure it will be something fun... Rainee has a movie date planned for just the two of us sometime this week... and then there's Thanksgiving at Kathleen's family dinner... and those are just the thing I know about... you know how a day can go... anything can happen!!! Have a great few days... and thanks so much for stopping by!!!

Thursday, November 19

Things On My Plate...

Working working working... on so many things I've only had a few precious moments the last day or two to take a breath.... I've been working in Rainee's class... they're getting ready for the Kindergarten Thanksgiving Feast on Friday... can't wait, it's going to be a super fun time for the kids (and parents)... so I'll have pictures of the Feast to post sometime this weekend...

I've also been working on the house.... you know getting it over the top ready for Thanksgiving... and then there's the shopping for all the food... we're doing an early dinner with Steve's family (Sunday), because we've been invited to Kathleen's (Austin's girlfriend) family Thanksgiving dinner... it's a pretty big deal, since this is the first time any of Austin's girlfriends have every invited us to anything.... so, of course, we had to say yes... could be the start of 2 Thanksgiving dinners every year... oh my the food...

I'm also working on a business project... I've been praying praying praying for some kind of business thing I could do from home... because I really don't want to have to go back to work, but want to help financially... and it happened... I woke up in the middle of the night with an idea several weeks back... and I've been working on it! Very excited and I'll let you know all the details... soon... but right now I'm working working working on getting stuff done... I'm a busy girl... excited, but very very busy!!!

I've also been working on some holiday graphic design freelance... gotta love that!!! I love last minute jobs... I love the rush of beating a ticking clock and it's deadline!!!

Lastly I thought I'd share my latest lo... I just loved this photo of Rainee... I love how her eyes are so expressive... how they sparkle when she's happy... so you know I just had to make a lo with it... it's Rainee in a nutshell... my sweet, happy, dirty little girl!!! I'm still working on the other dirt day lo... Plus I'm nearly finished with my December Daily shells... I've been wanting to do this, but it's just never worked out... but this year I made a point of doing it early... it's super super simple, but I'm very excited to have it nearly done so when December rolls around, all I have to do is put the photos in... yeah!!!

Well, I think that's it for today... I'm off.... to work work work on all things I have on my plate. What are you working on??? Do you have a plate full?

(Materials: Paper: DCWV, My Minds Eye, Jillibean Soup, Felt: FancyPants, Tags: Jillibean Soup, Button: vintage)

Tuesday, November 17

Playing in the Dirt... Plus Organized Christmas...

Well since we moved into our new home back in April, we've been wanting to do some gardening... to spruce up the place... but whenever we went shopping for plants... I wanted one thing and Steve would want another... so for awhile now it's been on the back burner... until the other day when we were in Home Depot, and I saw some beautiful rose trees... I couldn't believe we both agreed on them... I'll show photos of them once they're all planted...

But what I wanted to share with you is my dear Rainee's love for DIRT... she thrives in it... she makes a mess gets really stinkin' dirty and has the loveliest time... it reminds me of when I use to make mud pies with my brother... we'd have a blast!!! Anyway... while I was doing a bit of gardening... Rainee was having her own good time... and well it was just too cute, I just had to take pictures... she was dirty dirty dirty by the time we finished... but oh so happy!!!

Really quick I thought I'd share a site I found while surfing around... it's called Organized Christmas... It has a ton of stuff, and during the holidays it's nice to have things go smoothly... so I thought I'd share this find with you... there is so many things on the site... but I'm doing the pick and choose thing... things that what will actually work out well for me, my family and our holiday... the downloads are free... I hope it helps you... since the holidays are just around the corner... I can't believe it, can you???

Have a lovely day and thanks sooooooo much for stopping by!!!

Sunday, November 15

What's Your Favorite...

Julie at WhatIsYourFaveThing blog has asked me to be the Guest Designer for the month of November!!! Tell me I'm not excited!!! I have really enjoyed doing their challenges... I don't know about you, but I don't really do many layouts about me. Mostly it's about Rainee or us as a family... so sharing my favorite things... has not only been insightful but also a way for Rainee (& Steve) to know a little more about me... so Thank You Thank You Thank You... Julie for choosing me to be the guest designer... I am honored!!! And thank you for always inspiring me!

I'm excited about this first challenge... 'What's your favorite decade?'... I knew right away what my favorite decide was... I have always loved the 50's! You know.. Elvis... Barbie... Cool Cars... the Drive-In's... the Jukebox... Malt Shops... Ozzie & Harriet... I Love Lucy... plus I've always loved hearing the stories my parents would tell of family, friends and parties... Life was simple, but very, very good! On my layout I just had to put pictures of my parents... I love these photos of them in those... cool sunglasses!!! Plus it wouldn't be a 50's layout without Barbie!

I would love for you to come over to WhatIsYourFaveThing and play along with us!!! As an added treat, I am offering up a surprise for each of the winner for each of the challenges in November... you're going to love seeing what the design team has picked for their favorite decade... so I hope you will join in and stop by to say hi!!!

(Materials: Paper: DCWV, Chipboards Stickers & Letters: American Craft, Rhinestones: Queen & Co., Car & Barbie: Downloads from the Internet, Glitter Glue: Sparkly Glitter Glue)

Saturday, November 14

What's Your Favorite...

The challenge for WhatIsYourFaveThing blog... this week is 'What's your favorite vacation?"... Here's mine... Paris...

When I was 18, my dad finagled me into being a driver for a convention he was in charge of... and the people I had the privilege of taking around were from France. You know how it is when you're 18 you don't want to do something and it ends up being one of those experiences that turns into being one you'll never forget... and brings other opportunities... That was me. Once the convention was over and my touring duties... the friends I'd made were staying in the U.S. for a few months... and I was able to go site seeing with them... we went to Northern California, Tijuana, & Colorado... it was the summer after graduation ... and it ended up being a summer to remember.

Which brings me to Paris... one of the girls I made friends with was getting married... she sent me an invitation... I was thrilled, but there was no way I could afford to go... I was in college and working part time... there was just no way. Then about a month before Chantal's wedding, my dear dear dear dad surprised me with a ticket to go to France for the wedding... all I needed to come up with spending money. So I took on extra baby-sitting jobs... for the next 4 weeks I worked hard to make some extra money...

So, in the spring I went to France. I went to the wedding, which was beautiful... then while Chantal & John were on the honeymoon in Peru, I was able to tour the country and visit all the friends I'd made the summer before. I even postponed coming home for 3 1/2 months... so it truly was a trip of a life time.

I went to all over France... everywhere I went I stayed with friends from the convention... Paris, Versailles, Mount St. Michel, Marseilles, Cannes, Nice, St. Étienne, Rouen, Lyon... that's just the small list of the places I visited... I loved the beautiful country sides... the blue blue Mediterranean Sea shores... the beautiful castles, and hearing their history... tasting all the different cheeses and wines.But I would have to say, my first memory of this trip to France was seeing Paris at night and all the beautiful the city lights... the Eiffel Tower... Champs Elysees... Arc de Triomphe... Montmarte... the Louvre... Notre Dame... Opera Garnier... the Siene River... the cafes... I could go on and on and on... even now if I close my eyes I can see it. All together, France was my favorite vacation ever... but my favorite memory of the trip, would have to be Paris at night... it truly is beautiful. I hope someday to go back with Steve and Rainee... I would love to share this with them....

So, what's been your favorite vacation?? The challenge ends today... go check it out!!!

(Materials: Paper: Me&My Big Idea, Core'dinations, DCWV, Tags: Creative Imaginations, Flowers: Prima, Ribbon: Making Memories, Letter Stickers: Memory Makers, Button: Vintage)

Thursday, November 12

Autumn Day...

First I want to wish a happy birthday to my sweet niece Autumn.... I hope your day is extra special!!! Rainee misses her cousin soooooo much (we all do for that matter)... wish you were here so we could celebrate all together... Enjoy your day!!! We hope your year is full of new, wonderful and exciting things... Happy Happy Happy Birthday, Autumn!!!

Onto the layout... I'm sure you know how it is hard to get a 'good' picture of you and your kids together... either it's blurry, you're looking one way and the kids are looking another... something is always wrong with it! Well I was pleasantly surprised when I saw this one of the two of us... this rarely happens anyway... whoo hoooooo, I was happy! Anyway I love these photos.... and I wanted to this layout to have the feel of Autumn... I just love the colors of Autumn... the rich reds, oranges, browns and yellows... and there is always just a hint of green lingering somewhere. Beautiful...

For the title I used my new Gypsy... and can I say it's just too much fun!!! I've been playing with it... but this is the first thing I've cut out. I love the fact that I didn't have to change cartridges every time I wanted to do a different 'font'.... and I could position the images exactly where I wanted them... then there was the resizing, welding... oh my gosh there is so much I love about this little guy. On the title... I used striped pattern paper... before it was nearly impossible... I've wasted a lot of paper trying to get something just right... but with the Gypsy it worked perfect. I knew exactly where I wanted it to cut... and it did it... amazing! I have a new love... and I can't wait to do more project with it...Thanks for stopping by... have a lovely lovely day!!!

(Materials: Paper: Core'dinations, Basic Grey, Recollections, Tag: Jellibean Soup, Stamp: Technique Tuesday - Ali Edwards, Ink: Staz-on, Pen: Pigma)

Wednesday, November 11

Veterans Day & This Fall Moment...

As this day begins I want to thank and honor our Veterans for serving our country... and also to those who are serving our Country. We have been blessed by your service. Thank you for watching over us...

As for scrapping... I have to say... it's so nice getting back in to the groove... being so sick you can't scrap... really isn't fun. Rainee's been enjoying being back in the studio too... she's making cards... and as always sitting on my lap, helping me with everything... life here is getting back to normal... and I'm very thankful for that!!!

Now for the layout... I just love this picture of Rainee from our day at the pumpkin patch... I wanted the photo to stand out on this lo... so I made it pretty simple... plus I had these beautiful leaf shape cutouts leftover from my Fall Window for the Favorite Season Project... that I couldn't pass up using... I also have been wanting to use these new Jellibean Soup Corrugated Letters I got at the last scrapbook convention... they are just way tooooooo fun!!

So even though it's a simple lo... I love that Rainee is the focus... and just a few added little photos from our day... it's just what I wanted!!! Thanks so much for stopping by... have a lovely day!!!
(Materials: Paper: Fancy Pants, Letters: Jellibean Soup, Stamps: Technique Tuesday - Ali Edwards, Ink: Ranger, Pen: Pigma)

Monday, November 9

Haunted Halloween...

As I posted the other day, Rainee had a blast in the Haunted House on Halloween... she would have gone again and again... if I'd have let her... she was enjoying seeing all the' scarrrrrrrrry things' as I was going through our Halloween pictures ... these aren't the best photos... you know how it is trying to take a quick photo in the dark without a flash AND watch your child so no one takes them... so these may not be the best photos... but you still get the idea... besides Rainee loves them. Maybe next year with my new camera I'll have better pictures...

Anyway... here's the latest layout with the 'scarrrrrrrrrry things' we saw on Halloween night....& I just had to put that cute little spider in there hanging down from the scary Raggedy Ann's hand... thanks for stopping by... and have a fab day!
(Materials: Paper: Core'dations, Adorn it, Recollections, Stickers: Recollections, We R Memory Keepers, Brad: Imaginisce, Pen: Gelly Roll)

Friday, November 6

Certificate of Reading Achievement...

Rainee & I have had a ritual since she was a baby to read books every night before she goes to sleep... and now in Kindergarten they require the students to read (w/parents) at least 20 books a month... well... Rainee far exceed their expectations... and read 81 books!!! Because of her outstanding achievement, she received the Certificate of Reading Achievement Award for the most books... Yeah Rainee!!!!

I'm sure you know this when it comes to night time rituals... there are some nights that are better than others... and some nights you're just too tired and only want to read a couple... but this always changes once you get started... for us... we just keep reading and reading and reading!!! I'm so happy she's excited about it & loves reading...

Congratulations Rainee... Job well done!!! I'm very very proud of you!!!!

Thursday, November 5

I was given this award by my blogging friend Kristin over at Attempt Creativity. She always has something cute to share... Thank you so much Kristin for thinking of me!!

The rules are this: I need to pass this award on to five people, post on their blog to let them know I left this award, and then I need to answer a list of questions in ONE word.

1. Where is your cell phone? Table
2. Your hair? Natural
3. Your mother? InHeaven
4. Your father? Loving
5. Your favorite food? Everything
6. Your dream last night? Crazy
7. Your favorite drink? Water
8. Your dream/goal? Underway
9. What room are you in? Livingroom
10. Your hobby? Scrapbooking
11. Your fear? Bugs
12. Where do you want to be in 6 years? Here
13. Where were you last night? Home
14. Something that you aren't? Lazy
15. Muffins? Homemade
16. Wish list item? Success
17. Where did you grow up? Mostly California
18. Last thing you did? Blogged
19. What are you wearing? Jammies
20. Your TV? DVR
21. Your Pets? Champ
22. Friends? Wonderful
23. Your life? Happy
24. Your mood? Happy
25. Missing someone? Always
26. Vehicle? Vue
27. Something you're not wearing? Shoes
28. Your favorite store? Walmart/Target (couldn't pick one)
29. Your favorite color? Red
30. When was the last time you laughed? Yesterday
31. Last time you cried? Lately
32. Your best friend? Fun
33. One place that I go to over and over? School
34. Facebook? Trying
35. Favorite place to eat? Flemmings

Here are the people I'm passing this award on to, I know it's only suppose to be 5 but couldn't stop at just 5 so here is my list:
Joan @ September Tea
Jen @ jencropable
Pam@ One Gals Trash

Karen @ Lilacs and Lupines
Jana @ Preprosto Bogastvo (Simple Abundance)
MJ @ Pewaukee Daily Photo
Amanda @ One Scrappy
I also want to give a shout out to these two... they've already had this award... but I just have to mention them... Julie @ The Tucker Wolek Clan and Deana @ (diva)logues - I love their blogs!!

Trick or Treat Layout

This year for Halloween Rainee decided she was either going to be a GI Joe Ninja, Hannah Montana or a Puppy Dog... and Puppy Dog won out. We went everywhere for costumes, but we either couldn't find a doggie or if we did, it was just too small... so in the end I made her costume... and she of loves it. I think she makes an adorable puppy dog. As for our friend Kenny... Kenny decided to be an 'Alien Brain Head'... we're still laughing over it... his mom couldn't figure out where he got the idea, but that's what he wanted to be... it's just adorable!!! For his brain, she used a brain jello mold with tissue paper and glow sticks to make it glow... then stuck some eyes on it. Lizzy had no idea what to do, or if it was going to be what Kenny pictured... but in the end Kenny was seriously happy with the results!!! I think it's adorable!!!

Now right before we left to go Trick or Treating... we just had to get a quick shot of them together... too cute! They had a great time, got lots of candy and couldn't stop talking about the haunted house they got to go in.... they loved it! Rainee and Kenny had a hauntingly good time...

(Materials: Paper: DCWV, Adorn It, Karen Foster, Stickers: Adorn It, We R Memories Keepers, atd, Felt buttons: Fancy Pants, Felt Bats: Misc, Thread: Wrights)

Tuesday, November 3

Presents, Presents & More Presents...

Steve & Rainee, pretty much blew me away with birthday presents... here's what I was blessed with... plus there's still the little trip Steve has planned for all of us later in the month and dinner one night this week... I think I'm seriously lucky and very very very blessed!!!

A "Jonas" Build-A-Bear... for my little Rainee...

A beautiful Tiffany's necklace...

A Cricut Gyspsy...

Ashton... oh no... I mean the...

Nikon D5000 camera...

And beautiful cards from my friends and family... I'm still in shock... what a birthday! Thank you all for the lovely birthday wishes... I really did have a super day!!!