Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year!

Wow! Did that time fly! As we get ready to ring in the New Year, I have to look back at 2009.

A time when Nathan turned five and completely changed. He grew into a responsible, caring young boy! He just plain rocks! Ella turned us all on our heads and made us smile a million times. I have so enjoyed being their mommy and couldn't love them more!

It is our last year in this house that we have called home. We had our last pool party here, celebrated our last Christmas. It is very strange. We have adored our time here!

This year, we spent time with friends. We have traveled and BBQed and shopped. I reconnected with people from my past. I have also experienced the end of a friendship, which has been difficult.

We worked hard through all the transitions in education!

I have experienced some cool opportunities and moments in this industry. My name being up on the Cosmo Cricket finalist list being one of them! I have tried, through all of my attempts to reach my scrappy goals, to remember to create purely for the love of it all!

This past year, we suffered many losses. One so painful, it will never really leave me.

This year, we have all grown! I am sure of one thing for the upcoming will force me to remain open, will teach me how to overcome challenges and will bring many wonderful moments.

And I know that the not-so-great moments will only be an opportunity to grow.

Happy New Year!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Too Perfect!

These pictures...too perfect! They totally sum up Steve and I. We adore each other, yet bicker like no others! There is lots of teasing that goes on in our household. Two strong personalities, two people who have big opinions. Our conversations are deep and are dreams are wild. Yet, we are big homebodies. I truly adore him.

I have had these for a while but was waiting for the right papers to scrap them! Cupid, you are my other love! As a matter of fact, we have been having a love affair the past few days! LOL! (although I am not kidding!) 7 layouts made using The Nook January kit featuring the Cupid collection from Pink Paislee! It will go down in history as one of my favs!

Off to hang out with the hubs! He is feeling neglected. LOL!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Another Christmas

I am off to Christmas number 3 today! That means another time for Nathan, Ella and Christian to play! Nathan isn't excited or anything! LOL!

The holiday was wonderful--time with family and great food. Watching the kids take it all in was fabulous too!

Except Ella...who was so fresh on Christmas Day that I took all her new toys and put them in the garage. She is still working on earning them back!

Must make me the Grinch, huh? She has to learn because I can either stop it now or have to deal with it when she is 13. Eek!

I wonder why she is who she is. She is the center of attention and tries to weasel out of everything!

Proof right here:

Ahh, this too shall pass!

Hope you had a wonderful few days! I have the next week off and am super excited to just relax and have family time. I might be a little psyched about extra scrapping time too! LOL!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

To Ella

I stood in my kitchen today, prepping my appetizer for tonight's Christmas Eve celebration. Behind me, I heard the sounds of happy children playing, and, yes, sometimes fighting. I thought of Steve and how darn blessed we are. And I gave thanks!

This time of year puts me in place where I just want to acknowledge how grateful I am! So here is my letter to Ella!

Sweet Girl,

I will admit it. I can't get past your cuteness, how animated you are, and the clever things you come up with. To call you charming does not do it justice. See what I mean!

You are loving and cuddly. The day you were born, the doctors placed you in my arms so I could nurse. I realized after a few minutes that your tiny arm was wrapped around me and you were rubbing my back with your little hand. From hour one, you loved affection.

You are bright and witty, even manipulative. It keeps me on my toes! I love having conversations with you to see your perspective on life. I admire your strength and confidence. You will not be pushed around.

You can push my buttons like no other. It drives me nuts, yet I adore you with that same passion! Our family became complete when you came. I thank God everyday that he sent us YOU! There is no other you...

Loving you forever and hoping we will always be best friends!


I hope you are enjoying your blessings today! Merry Christmas and happy holidays!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Getting Closer!

Only one more day of work, then a nice long vacation! Only two more days to shop! I can't believe Christmas is almost here! In preparation, we have started cleaning out the playroom. That means we donated a bag of gently used books to children in need! Just the other day, we brought three bags of baby clothes to a women's shelter. Feels good to give back to others this holiday season.

Just like reading our favorite Christmas books for the month of December, I am hoping to make participating in charitable activities an annual tradition! The girls over at The Nook have made this a huge focus this holiday season. Even Leah and Pam are in on the push to remember what is important this time of year. Check this out-It is a proposal from Leah and Pam:

We at the Nook would like to wish each of you a Merry Christmas and much Happiness in the New Year!

To get this season wrapped up with an extra helping of love and kindness, we would like to ask each of you to consider donating canned goods or a monetary donation to a local food bank, halfway house or homeless shelter.

If you do not have a local charity that can benefit your community, there are many places online that you can make a donation to help everyone have a Merry Christmas, and make sure food banks around the world are well stocked for the coming year.

If you take this opportunity to give back to your community, please pop in on this thread and leave us a comment! Let us know how you helped your community, and we will enter you to win a Nook kit!

Thank you very much!

Cool huh!

Here is a quick idea for a simple holiday gift! I simply took clear packaging and filled it with candy. A few decorations and we have a thoughtful, sweet present!

I had so much fun writing a letter to Nathan the other day! I will be back tomorrow to write my ode to Ella! LOL!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Nathan, My Love

Nathan, you bring a smile to my face every day with your quirky sense of humor and your genuine consideration for others. You are a light in my life! I recently cleaned out the bins that hold all your baby clothes. I stood there and cried. Because I vividly remembered you that small, that precious! Now I look at you and you are a little guy! All boy and so grown up! You lost your first tooth today, encountering another rite of passage! Are you really old enough to lose a tooth?


Gosh, those eyes. They melt many hearts, including mine!

I have the extreme pleasure of watching you change each day. I have witnessed you transitioning to school and see you meeting with so much success. You have made many friends and no longer wait for me at the window to wave goodbye. It is bittersweet, but I know that you are busy! Your best friend is this guy. Your cousin Christian, who you adore. You would do anything for him! May your loyalty and bond last a lifetime!

I am blessed to call you my little man! I adore you more than you will ever know!

With love this Christmas and always,

Friday, December 18, 2009

Not a Creature Was Stirring

Twas the night before Christmas (well, not really) and all through the house, not a creature was stirring, DEFINITELY NOT A MOUSE! Why not? Because it was dead and under my floorboards in my office. Which used to be a sunroom so it is not on a foundation, but instead sits on stilts.

It forced me out of my scraproom and away from the computer for a week while we had to stay far away from the smell. Until my hero, Jerry, came to remove it. Because that is what he does for a living! Can you imagine?

So I am back now. Hope I didn't miss too much while I was gone! I promise to visit some blogs this has been too long!

In an effort to change the stench, umm, I mean mood, how about a Christmas card? I made it using my December kit from The Nook! It came with an embellishment packet that had this funky, glittery ribbon. The minute I saw it I knew I wanted to use it in a unique way!

So this is what I came up with!

Took lots of adhesive and some arm twisting, but it was fun to make! I also had this idea to make a cute gift bag full of M&Ms. But I think I ate too many of them!

What...something had to get me through mouse hell week!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Pajama Day

There aren't many good things about the winter. I don't particularly like the snow, who wants it to be dark by 4:30 and outdoor recess is a drag! Losing my outdoor spaces because of cold, wind and snow has meant that I have to photograph my layouts inside. Why it is that they come out so much worse than my others? ACK!

Winter does have a few perks. Hot cocoa, cute scarves, and pajama days. You know those days when it is simply too cold to go out so you have a great excuse for staying warm inside. Steve calls it hunkering down! You will catch him in his pjs hiding under a blanket all day on Sunday afternoons! We play, cook and and do projects all while wearing our pjs!

Here is the proof!

Supplies: Very Merry by October Afternoon, Alphabet by American Crafts

This was the kids and I making cookies for Santa last year! There we are sharing a golden family moment all while doning our pajamas.

At least we have matching sets! Makes winter more bearable!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

This Holiday Stuff...

is exhausting! Trying to keep up with moving our Elf on the Shelf: Dash, taking train rides to the North Pole, reading a different holiday book each night, cookies, Santa on fire trucks...Whew!

But, it is also an amazing time. My kids are at an age where they are enchanted by Christmas. They are full of joy and wonder. I see it in their eyes and their smiles. I feel like a kid again! Steve and I often meet eyes upon watching our children absore some exciting sights and we connect. Connect over the love we feel for both of them and the memories we are building.

One of my favorite traditions involves this:

My friend Diane actually gave me the idea. I always had the intention to wrap each book like it was a little present, but laziness got in the way! LOL! I recently found these cute sacks that I put the books in and they reach in without looking to take one!

In celebration of the holiday, we are featuring a card a day over at The Nook! Come check it out! There are some beauties over there. I recently shared this card:

Both projects were made using the December kit! You can win one just by posting your work in our gallery during the month of December! How easy is that! Pop over and say hi while you are there!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Snow Day

Woot! We have a snow is so nice to be all holed up inside the house with these guys:

We had chocolate chip pancakes and watched Ice Age under a pile of blankets. Just what we all needed.

The kiddos are actually quite cute, pretending that it is Christmas Eve. They are placing all of their toys underneath our Christmas tree, running to go to sleep in their make pretend beds (blankets and pillows) and then waking up for their "presents."

Hmmm, they might just be a little excited for Christmas!

Off to enjoy my second cup of java! Hope you have a cozy day!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Our Inner Super Heroes

Super heroes! Such a big theme in my house right now. Nathan has moved on a bit from the whole Cars craze and is loving all things super heroes! We have costumes, books, toys and games. He is attracted to the theme because they help people and he loves to do that. So sweet!

If Ella has a super hero, it might be Barbie who always looks smashing! LOL! No, really, it is her brother. She adores him!

I was so excited when I got these photos because they show the love between them.

Funny, how the universe speaks to you. Actually, sometimes it is screaming at you, but you are failing to respond.

See, the thing about super heroes is that we all have one. That super hero within. The part that can move mountains. Who has strength and courage. But sometimes we fail to strip off our outer layers and reveal that person who can do anything.

With all the talk of super heroes going around in my house, you think I would have made the connection sooner. So, I am currently looking for mine. I think she will appear with the right amount of exercise, sleep, water, and hugs. I bring this up because it is time to look inward. To channel the best parts of me.

I found this quote (on my iPhone Quotes app!), "When we are unable to find tranquility within ourselves, it is useless to seek it elsewhere."--Francios de La Rochefoucauld. Isn't it the truth? We can blame our past, look for what the other person did to push our buttons or feel helpless.

None of that will help though. And rather than wait to be rescued by that dashing guy, I think I will seek that tranquility within myself. All I have to do is listen!

(Of course, if that dashing guy came in the form of Zac Effron or Taylor Lautner, then I would surely play helpless. Even if it were only for a few hours...LOL!)

Friday, December 4, 2009

Breaking News!

No, I am NOT the fourth woman to come forward claiming to have an affair with Tiger. LOL, even though it is not really funny...

I have great news! You have an amazing opportunity to win a December Kit from My Scrapbook Nook!

The same kit that helped our awesomely talented team produce these:

Yep, that beautiful kit featuring Making Memories and Prima! And it is super easy to win. Between now and Christmas upload your creations to our gallery and you will be entered to win a Free December kit! Really, that's it! Winner will be notified via Message Board pm.

Hope to see your work soon!

Good luck!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Christmas Magic

I am needing some Christmas magic these days.

I have lost a bit of my sparkle. I don't even mean with scrapbooking, but just with myself in general. Out of sorts, feeling moody, I am just not myself. Ever go through this?

You imagine yourself being the best you...but can't seem to bring it to fruition. I think of myself running, strong, fit...yet I haven't done anything healthy for my body in a long while. I want to laugh with my kids, have patience, yet I am short and sometimes overwhelmed. My intentions aren't coming across the way I would like. I know I will find my way, but the "I've fallen and I can't get up" phase is tough.

I guess it makes me feel better to share it. Acknowledge it. Forgive it. Even embrace it because phases like this ultimately make you grow.

So, I would love some Christmas magic right now!

Speaking of the big guy, here is a layout about how my little guy finally enjoyed Santa last year!

I think I will spend the next few days going to bed early or walking around with my IPOD in hopes of recharging. I think I will add me to my Christmas list this year.

Do you think Santa is listening?


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