Friday, September 30, 2011

School Photos

I don't know about you, but I love getting the school photos of the girls every year.  I know they're nothing special, but they just take me back to the days when I was the one getting my picture taken.  Spending time the night before trying on, and taking off outfit after outfit until I found the perfect thing to wear.  Trying so hard all morning to keep 'the look' just right while awaiting my class' turn for pictures.  Sitting there with the fake smile pasted on my face hoping it wouldn't look fake in the actual picture.  You know.  The problem with the girls' school photos however, is that despite the memories they bring up in me, they look really bland in frames, and are really hard to scrap.  Hence the fact that last year's photo were only scrapped the other day.  I put it off, and put if off, until I just couldn't do in any longer.  I decided to keep it real simple.  The photos are what they are, and there's only so much you can do with a 5x7 Lifetouch photograph.  In the end I think they turned out better than anticipated, well except for Théa's, I think I ran out of mojo by the time I got to that poor girls' photo.  Alas, they all look worlds better now than they did sitting in the envelope in my 'important papers' pile.
Using Cosmo Cricket Circa 1934 papers.
Using Basic Grey Hello Luscious papers
Using Crate, My Mind's Eye, Webster's trim, Sassafraslass alphas, Studio Calico mist (Barnwood)

Any big plans for the weekend?  Ours are pretty status quo from weekend to weekend: Youth Group on Fridays, Dance on Saturdays, Church on Sundays.  This weekend we'll start up our Small Group again.  I'm looking forward to that.  For those who don't know Small Group is a bunch of us who get together (4 couples, 1 single mom, and anywhere from 6-12 kids), have dinner, and discuss Jesus, the Bible, Christian living and how they all relate to our real lives day in and day out.  The kids play, and usually end up watching a movie together.  We rotate from one home to home every other week.   Sometimes we'll watch a dvd, other times we'll read something together, a few times we've done a service project of some type, like working at a food bank, or painting a small inner city community center.  It's been great 'doing life' together with these friends.  Proverbs 27:17 reads "as iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another", and Hebrews 10:24-25 reads "let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds, not forsaking our own assembling together, but encouraging one another..."  we want to live by these standards, together.  But before Small Group on Saturday, D and I will watch the Bomber Game (our local football team) and see what will happen with the new QB and running back.  Last week was a horrible week for our beloved team, 3 players out, 2 for the rest of the season, ugh!  Here's hoping 29, 000 people don't freeze their butts off in the cold, at the stadium for nothing.  At least I'll be watching from the comfort of my home with D by my side, maybe I'll make us a yummy appetizer to share.

Hope you've got an enjoyable weekend lined up too.  Thanks for stopping by today.

Happy Friday friends,

♥ S. Pin It

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Home Grown

I had a chance to pull out with my new Crate Farmhouse papers yesterday.  They were perfect for this photo of my girls and me.  Remember I mentioned that we were going to go the the Corn Maze on Sunday.  That didn't happen, as everyone else in the city decided they'd go there too.  The place was packed.  We didn't even bother pulling in, as cars were parked virtually bumper to bumper.  Instead we headed just a little further up the road to the river entrance.  We ventured down to the water to discover the coolest looking and feeling earth any of us had ever seen.  It is evident that it was once the river bed back in the Spring when the water would have been as high as the road in many places. Now it was gooey underneath with a bit of a caked on exterior so we could gingerly make our way across it.  Check it out...
Here are a few more photos that we managed to get that day

And here is the layout I made. 

The journaling reads "I can remember when you all were just a wish I had.  So happy being your mom".

That's all I've got for today. Seems like the days are all melding into one these days.  Seems like D is always traveling.  Seems like I'm doing a lot of stuff, but nothing of importance.  Seems like something is about to change.  Don't know what, but I think I'm ready for it.  I'm trying to be in tune with God, trying to be quiet so I don't miss it.

Hope your  day is off to a great start.  Thanks for popping by.

♥ S. Pin It

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Let's Create - the Pom Pom edition

Remember these?

Well I ended up making a whole bunch of them.  I think the total number was twelve when all was said and done.  My sweet friend Sharon loved them, thank goodness.  And I did end up finding black tissue paper, finally, at a teeny tiny Dollarstore near my house.  I had a few of you ask how I made them, so I thought I'd share the directions and photos with you here.  You won't believe how easy they are to make. 

Let's begin:

1. For the largest size pom pom, you'll need tissue paper measuring 20 inches wide by 30 inches long.
2. Begin by stacking 15 sheets of tissue paper.
3. Make a 1 1/2 inch fold in the stack of tissue.
4. Press down firmly on the edge, creating a crisp crease.
5. Continue folding the stack of tissue by 1 1/2 inches accordion style until the entire stack has been folded.
6. Take an 18 inch piece of floral wire and cut it in half.
7. Place one half to the side for later use.
8. Use the other half to wrap around the stack of pleated tissue paper.  Twist ends to hold in place. 

 9. Pull a good length of fishing wire through the floral wire loop.  Tie the ends together.  Length of the wire will depend on how far down you want the pom pom to hang from the ceiling.

10. To create a more visually appealing pom pom you may cut the ends of the stack in either a rounded or a pointed tip.  I prefer the pointed like this.

Note how I cut a few layers at a time.  Because we are using so many layers it is impossible to make only two cuts.  You'll find that cutting them a few layers at a time will result in an uneven look at the end.  Don't worry about this as it will not be noticeable in the final result.
11. Unfold one half of the stack.  Pressing it a little to flatten out the pleats a bit. This will help when separating the layers.

12. Delicately separate the layers.
Begin by separating the outer edge all the way along the width of the tissue, working your way up toward the center of the pom pom.
Note: work a few layers at a time, and then switch to the other side of the pom pom, working a few  layers there, then switch back to the other side and do the same.  Be prepared you will almost certainly rip the tissue a bit here and there.  Be as gentle as possible, and don't sweat it.  Again, the finished product, because of it's puffiness will pretty much hide all the imperfections created along the way. And there you have it!  

Want to create a smaller version?  Simply trim a little bit off each the length and the width of your stack of tissue.  Follow steps 1 through 12 once again.

The smaller the pom pom, the few sheets you may want to use.  However, the least number of layers I used in my small ones was 10, I think they look really great when they're nice and puffy.  Also, because mine are being hung in a store, I really wanted them to be able to stand the test of time.

Here are the various sized and colours I made.

Hope you enjoyed my little tutorial.  Please link me up if you give these a try.  I'd love to see your pretty puffy pom pom creations.

Later this week I hope to finally be able to share my scrappy little secret with you.  Should make for a fun scrappy related weekend, yah!

Thanks for popping by today friends,

♥ S. Pin It

Friday, September 23, 2011

Something I had to share

Happy Friday friends!

Tonight the Youth from church is having an Adults versus Youth football game at the stadium.  I've never been down on the field where our CFL team plays, and think it'll be fun to walk the same field where big hits, big TDs, and game changing interceptions take place.  Now, I just hope the boys actually pass to the girls.  We've got a little work and a little play on the agenda for the rest of the weekend.  D and I are planning on going out to the lake to shut it all down on Saturday while the girls are at Dance.  Thankfully Mom and Dad have agreed to pick them up for us.  It goes so much quicker when we don't have to break up fights, stop to make lunch or listen to their bickering while we're trying to get things done.  Sunday, I'd really like to take the family to Amaze in Corn, a fun corn maze just outside the city.  I'm really hoping to get some good photos.  I realized yesterday how few photos I've taken in the past few months.  Being a scrapper that really dose pose a problem.  Although I did come across this beauty in my perusing. 

Okay about what I had to share with you.  I was reading my friend Pam's blog last night when I came across a share she posted.  I took a look, and felt like someone had gotten into my head and read the ever repeating ticker tape running through my brain.  If you ever feel like you're on the never ending hamster wheel of trying to fit it all in, then you'll want to have a look too.  I think the post has pretty much gone viral, as of last night there were 242 comments.  Check it out for yourself here.

Enjoy your weekend friends.  If you're local, I hope you get the time and enjoy one of the last lovely weekends of year. 

♥ S. Pin It

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Meet Jack

I mentioned yesterday that I had spent a couple of days watching a friend's little guy.  Well, meet Jack.  After getting permission from his mom to post photos of him I am able to introduce you to one of the brightest, cutest little guys I know.  He kept me on my toes, that's for sure.  Although admittedly afraid of monkey bars, I was able to convince Jack to accompany me to the park to get some exercise, and perhaps enjoy some of the other play things we'd find there.  I haven't been to the park in the middle of the day with a pre-schooler in several years.  The walk to the park has never been so interesting in the year we've been in this new home.  Jack had us stop to pick 'yellow flowers' in the forest (with which to adorn Miss Sherri's hair), admire the fountain, check out a couple of grass hoppers, chase the geese through the field, and even climb the monkey bars (well he did anyway).  It was so a vivid reminder of all the beauty God has placed around us.  To think He could have created a world in black and white, but didn't.  He could have given us only one season, but He didn't.  He could have made the world free of insects, and birds, trees, and wildlife, but He didn't.  Colour, beauty, and variety, are obviously of great importance to Him, and such a gift to all of us. On the way home Jack found a ladybug, which had to ride in the palm of his hand back to Miss Sherri's, as well as a gorgeous, long, fuzzy, black, and yellow caterpillar.  He carried that guy in his other hand, along with his 'yellow flower'.  The look of contentment on his face was just priceless.  When  we got home, I manged to convince him to allow me to take a couple of photos for his mom, but more importantly for me to scrap as a reminder of the miracle of God's tiniest creatures, and the joy they can bring us, if we take a moment to consider the gift that lies within all the colour and variety of the world around us.

Thank you Jack for a fun couple of days, and the reminder that no detail has been overlooked by God.

Using the Sept kit, and add ons from My Scrapbook Nook featuring Crate Random Collection. Alphas: Studio Calico

My experience that afternoon with Jack fit perfectly with Challenge #7 over at Scrapping Everyday Miracles "The Miracle of the Moment" was to be the subject for our layout.

Thanks for stopping by today.

♥ S. Pin It

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Short & Sweet

That would be the category this post falls into today.

I wanted to share with you this layout I created last night with the September (Glee) kit from Studio Calico.  I made if for the Get Picky Sketch challenge.  If you have a sec, and enjoy scrapping multiple photos on a page, you should check them out.  Their creators are both Scrapbook Nook residents.  Each of them have oodles of talent, and always produce the most stunning layouts.

I spent the past couple of days watching the cutest little guy for a friend.  He's smart, funny, and oh so lovable.  After our walk to the park I had him do a little photo shoot for me.  I got some pretty good shots, but had to move fast, because there was no getting him to sit still for long.  Combine that, with the fact that my September kit from the Nook finally arrived yesterday, and my scrap room is calling my name.  Loudly.  So I'm off to get my scrap on.  Hopefully I'll have some new stuff to show you real soon.

Oh, and D made it home safe and sound late last night from Ireland.  I have yet to actually have a conversation with him, but it's nice to have him home in one piece (thank you Lord).  I'm looking forward to our first family meal together in over a week.

Happy Wednesday friends,

♥ S. Pin It

Monday, September 19, 2011

Breath in, Breath out, repeat

Good morning friends.

That is going to be my mantra this week.  Every morning of the week is full, and every night is planned, and pretty much every afternoon, has something going on.  Those of you who work outside the home, my hat's off to you, and those of you who are single parents, you have my utmost respect.  This mommy/wife thing can seem all consuming even without having to hold down a full time job outside of these four walls.  I am grateful for this life, don't get me wrong. but everyone of us feels like we've got too many plates spinning at times.  One foot in front of the other, keep grounded in thoughts and prayers, breath in, breath out, and take time to enjoy the moments in between, that will be my focus this week.

I am excited to be heading this up.  Kick off is today, and I can't wait to see how things unfold.  I am very grateful to the DT of My Scrapbook Nook for giving me the freedom to run with this idea, and hope it is fun for all involved.  I'll be sure to share here when everyone has had a chance to complete their layout.

If you haven't heard yet Scrapbook Circle is having a DT call.  I've only recently discovered this blog and think they have some pretty great looking kits.  Yes, I am already a member to two kit clubs, and yes, I am seriously considering this one too.  Can you ever have too much of a good thing?  Well, yes, actually you can, but you know what I'm getting at.  I've decided to apply.  The existing team looks like a lot of fun, and some have been my scrappy friends for awhile already.  I'd love the opportunity to work with LG, Elizabeth, and Nicole.  Wish me luck, I'd really appreciate it.

And, because it's only right to start the week with a layout I thought I'd share this one.  To be honest I can't remember if I've already shared it here or not.  If so, it would have been some time ago.  Either way it's fitting for me this week.

How is everyone doing with back to school/activities/routine.  I'd love to know I'm not the only one on the hamster wheel.

Oh, and I almost forgot.  In the middle of Saturday afternoon errands, I discovered this Studio Calico post on Facebook...

Our FIVE Glee Club winners from the Share the Love contest:
Cheryl Leong
Sherri Wesley Funk
Julie Lynn Greenwood Urban
Cindy Whiting Miller 
Julie A. Shearer

Cool right?  Glee Club is one of my favorite SC  kits to date, check it out.  I am loving working with it.  Guess what I'm going to do with my free kit.  If you guessed give it away, you'd be right!  I haven't figured out how or when, but one of my lucky readers is going to get their hands on this fabulous lot of scrappiness.  Who knows it could be you.

Hope your week is off to a nice start.  Thanks for popping by, please know I really appreciate it.

♥ S.

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Friday, September 16, 2011

My Mind's Eye Blog Challenge #27

Happy Friday friends,

I have once again participated in the My Mind's Eye Blog Sketch Challenge.  In addition to the sketch you also needed to incorporate a theme of "Back to_____" into the title.

Here is the sketch
Add caption

Here's my layout
This is a white cardstock background I simply added the boarder for definition

Detail shots:
All MME product, except for Maya Road clouds, Pink Paislee foam alphas,yellow trim, sewing thread, Studio Calico Mr. Huey's, Bazzill Basics cardstock, and Sharpie pen.

It's hard to know what exactly they're looking for in these sketch challenges, all I know is that I'm quite happy with how this one turned out.  Wish me luck.

I'll leave you with a few ransoms and wish you all a lovely weekend.  

Listening: to "If I Die Young" by The Band Perry.  It's always running through my head.
Reading: Memoirs of A Geisha it's taking me forever, now that  schools begun.
Watching: Isabelle hold her own in the Intermediate Competitive Jazz Class.  So proud of that girl!
Eating: Chocolate brownie as I type
Drinking: A lot more water than usual these days thanks to my soar throat.
Wearing: Jeans and long sleeves now that Fall seems to be officially here.
Feeling: Like we're finding our groove of Fall schedules and routine
Playing: With paper, and pretties.  Some things don't change :)

Thanks for stopping by today!

♥ S. 
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Wednesday, September 14, 2011

A few layouts

It's Wednesday yay - we're halfway there people we can do it.

I've not got much today.  I've been taking a break from scrapping.  Working on a project for a friend, trying to get into a new book, a friend loaned me on Sunday, and trying to finish the one I already have on the go.  Add that to reorganizing the girls rooms (their walk in closets were never really organized when we moved in almost a year ago), being at the Dance Studio Mon/Tue/Thur/Sat,and hubby being gone for almost 2 weeks straight (which results in one pooped mama by 9pm),  and there's not a whole lot of time left.

I wanted to show you the layouts that I completed on Friday/Saturday during My Scrap Shoppe's online crop.  I showed you one the other day, here are the others along with what the challenge was.
Challenge: use a black, blue, and yellow colour palette.

Challenge: use buttons, a die cut, and hand journaling

Challenge: scrap a photo other than that of a person
And here are the pom poms I've been working on for a friend.  By the way, if anyone knows where I can find black tissue paper, please leave me a note in the comments section, I would be very grateful.

Cute right?
Well Darwin leaves tomorrow for Ireland.  Yup, you read right.  It's a 10 day work perk thing.  And he's off his laptop now, so I think I'll go and join him for a bit, before I hit the hay.  Tomorrow is Day 2 at the gym.  Yay me all 2 days out of 3.  I was going to go today, but opted for the walk in instead.  This crazy cough is on day 8, and now keeping me up all night.  I'm on some meds so hopefully I'll be on the mend very soon.

Thanks for popping in today.  Hope your day treats you well!

♥ S. Pin It

Monday, September 12, 2011

Studio Calico's Sunday Sketch

Welcome to a brand new week friends,

Today is all about Studio Calico.  There is always something fun going on over there, whether on the Message Board or on their Blog.   For the first time this week, I played along with the Sunday Sketch.  There's a new one revealed every Sunday.  Here is April's sketch from last week

And here is my take on it

and a couple detail shots

I combined this sketch challenge with on online challenge from My Scrap Shoppe's weekend virtual crop.  There were some really great challenges posted by Marcy and her crew.  If you're in need of some scrappy inspiration you should pop over and check them out.

That's it for me today, short and sweet.  I'm off to check out a new gym.  I've got a one week free trial.  Let's see if I can get back into it after two months off and not pull anything.

Thanks for stopping by today.

♥ S. Pin It

Friday, September 9, 2011


I saw this on Elizabeth's blog yesterday and thought it was pretty cute, and good for a Friday post.  Thanks for the hook up Elizabeth!  Because I write my posts in the morning I decided to do this one last night so I'd have a full day's worth of activity.

Today -
Today I went to get groceries, to the Dance Studio, and to Dollarama
Today I hoped to get a position on the Scrapbook Nook design team
Today I dreamed that one day I would feel like I am where I belong
Today I forgot to watch Isabelle dance in her first Competitive Jazz Class
Today I heard my brave Isabelle (Gr7) say she wants to try out for the grade 8 volleyball team
Today I read an email that gave me hope
Today I watched Rookie Blue, a new fave tv show
Today I said I was happy for my friend's good news
Today I believed that things happen for a reason, and God's timing is perfect
Today I felt a little sad, and a lot happy
Today I wondered how crazy it will be for me while hubby is gone for 2 weeks
Today I bought a lot of tissue paper, a few groceries, and one tall mocha frappuccino
Today I cleaned the kitchen several times
Today I created a couple of cards, and tried my hand at these.
Today I was me
Who are you today? 

Happy Friday Friends, I hope you have a relaxing weekend in store.  

Thanks for popping by!

♥ S.

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Thursday, September 8, 2011

Real life isn't always a bed of roses

It occurred to me last night, that I haven't posted any entries that highlight struggles I may be going through, and that most of my posts are fairly lighthearted and have happy undertones.  I know, for myself that, that was something that use to really get under my skin with some blogs I use to read.  I thought all that perkiness made the blogger seem less authentic.  Does that makes sense?  Now, of course no one wants to frequent a blog that is continuously full of negativity, pitiful inward thinking, and whining.  I think it's safe to say we all appreciate an honest and real depiction of the writer.  Please know that I, in now way live a perfect life (just ask my girls and hubby).  I feel very blessed to have the life I have.  The good, the bad, and everything in between.  I realize, however, that  when I sit down to write about what's been going on in my life, I'm often filled with happy thoughts, and reminded of all that's great about my life.  Who wouldn't want to share the ups?  I just wanted to be clear that I definitely have my downs too.  I struggle with self-esteem issues on an almost daily basis.  I have long since memorized Jeremiah 29:11 and can easily recite the words written in Psalm 139:14, but I still struggle with comparing myself to others.  Whether it's my parenting, my knowledge of scripture, my crafty hobby, home decor, my cooking skills, you name it.  I'm a perfectionist by nature, and can't help but see my faults when compared to another.  The thing is, that there is no scripture to support this kind of thinking.  No where does God say that He understands our beating ourselves up because of our short comings.  No where does He say He'll tolerate such disregard for His work in us.  Scripture is full of reminders of just the opposite.  Great leaders of the Bible were utter failures before they discovered their unique greatness when walking in right spirit with their Maker.  I must remind myself of their examples over, and over again.  This life is not about me.  It's about walking in right spirit, and trusting my God, to do what He said he'd do, give me a hope and a future.  Hope, future, promise those are not built upon distrust, worry, or an outlook that is based on the poor me syndrome.  With the help of my Savior I get incrementally better at accepting my inability to be perfect in all things, and trusting the Holy Spirit to help me be the best I can be in the areas that matter most.   I began the day thinking about the DT call at My Scrapbook Nook, resolved to the fact that my name will likely not be on the final list that will posted later today.  But I had to be honest with myself, that I was not resolved, if I felt sad about it.  I was disappointed rather.  I had to tell myself that that's okay, as I really do believe in God's timing for all things, even the ones that might seem trivial, including scrappy related things.  The same is true about how I felt when a friend announced her upcoming spotlight in a popular scrap magazine.  I was very, very happy for her, but still a little sad for me.  I have to say it out loud so that I can be honest with myself, accept the truth that is Jeremiah 29:11, and move on in faith that rejection is not going to kill me.  As much as it stings, in the end, it really does make one a little bit stronger for the next time.   The funny thing about this morning's musings for me, is that when I opened up my email, I discovered my own scrappy 'stamp of approval' so to speak.  Funny how God works sometimes.  I seriously think He looks down with such pride on His children when we finally understand in our head AND our hearts what it is He is trying to say to us.  I'll share my happy news, and the results of the DT selection as soon as I'm able.  Until then here's a fun little layout I completed yesterday of my sweet, and funny Théa.
I love that May Arts ribbon, and could make flowers out of it for just about every layout.

Oh, I almost forgot.  Photos of the fabulous September kit, featuring Crate Random papers are finally up on the Nook site.  You seriously don't want to miss this one, it'll go fast so get moving people.  You can get yours here

Hope your day is sweet friends.  Thanks for popping in.

ETA: I didn't make the DT after all.  But am so happy for a few of my friends who did, especially those that have been trying for a while now.  Thanks for all your encouragement and well wishes friends, it really meant a lot that you were all there right alongside me in the journey!

♥ S. Pin It

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

And They're Off

Like many of you, we celebrated the first day of the new school year this morning.  I really don't think celebrate is too strong of a word either.  Sure, there were no balloons, no singing, and no cake (the official sign of anything party in my opinion).  We did however, have chocolate chip pancakes, pretty hair, and outfits, and lots of picture taking to capture the event.  The girls were both excited and a little nervous for the change in teacher, classroom, and in Isabelle's case, a change in school altogether.  I'm happy to say they were up, dressed, and fed, captured on sd card, and each one arrived on school on time.  When the kids were little women would often comment that "it goes by so fast".  I truly didn't believe them.  I found the days of crying, pooping, fighting, biting, making messes, and cleaning up after them to be somewhat mundane and drawn out.  That's not to say that there weren't many moments of joy: at the first giggle, the first step, the random use of the word 'actually', the big sister reading to little sister(s) moments, the dress up games, and all the fun stuff of pre-schoolers, there was indeed plenty of that.  I just remember many moments of feeling depressed, and isolated during those times, it clouded my perspective of how sincerely short that season of kids truly is.   For those of you with little ones, believe them when they tell you.  They've been there, they know what they're talking about.  Today as I was taking photos of my girls I was almost overwhelmed with how many days are already behind them.  I realized I likely won't have them to myself for hours at a time ever again.  I am struck with how all those hours of reading stories, going over the alphabet, teaching them their colours, making bunny bow after bunny bow in order to practice tying shoe laces have paid off.  My girls are now fully functioning members of their classrooms, they are students of academia now, learning more complex things like long division, and the tricky grammatical rules of the English language.  I am all too aware, that the days of childhood do indeed go quickly, and soon enough I'll be looking back on today, thinking how much they were still like babies, even though as they left for their first day of Grades 3, 4, and 7 they all seemed so grown up.  I pray that with the Lord's help I will continue to be a teacher to them, a primary influence in their lives.  I pray they learn compassion, and kindness in even greater proportions than academics.  Schools will always be there to teach that which can be learned through books, my role is to model to them, and support and encourage them in the ways of Jesus, and to nurture in them the Fruit of the Spirit

So off you go my girls, I am so proud of each of you as you boldly take first steps into the 2011/2012 school year.  I love you!

My heart melts to see them so happy together, even for just a moment

She was a little nervous walking into this sea of Jr High kids.

This guy.  Not sure what he's going to do with himself for 6 hours with out his playmates today.  If only I could teach him to dust, do laundry, and scrub toilets.
Hope all is well in your corner of the world friends.  Thank you for stopping by, especially those of you who stayed with me to the end of the post :)

♥ S. Pin It