Thursday, December 27, 2007
scrapbooking. I am feeling the pull from paper scrapping. It is hard not to when I can create so quickly with new things...and most of them free. The competition is so fierce amongst digital designers (by that I mean people creating the paper, embellishments, frames...the stuff to scrap with) to get their product out in front of the buyer that many give away "freebies". About a month ago I found this blog, and I visit daily, and get new things about that often. I have gotten much better at organizing my digital stuff, and try to unzip and then tag them in Picasa shortly after downloading them. I am sure this is greek to many of you, but if you have PhotoShop, and/or if you are a digi scrapbooker, some of this might be helpful. I was actually invited to scrapbook tomorrow at the local Archivers store. As much as I want to, I could not quite face up to the challenge of packing up all my paper supplies,. Plus we plan to try a family outing tomorrow anyway. Recording, and making, memories in any fashion is good to me. I am firmly in the gray camp about what is best. Truth is, I love it all and wish I had more time to spend on it, and more means to do it with!
Weeds and Wildflowers template
Designer Digitals postmark
Designer Digitals template and postmark
Paper and tree by FranziskaPin It
Wednesday, December 26, 2007
First, these collages are just so easy that it is the best way to show many shots, fast. I know, heads get cut off but I also think you can get the picture (pun intended!).
It was a great Christmas. Beginning with Christmas Eve mass that was literally at overflow proportions. I am my Mom's daugther b/c I absolutely love children singing. And children singing Christmas songs...even better. My girls behaved so well and it was so long and so hot too. The first two pictures are them dressed in their coordinating outfits before church.
The girls were so excited on Monday night. Olivia just could not fall asleep so Dave and I did not start our prep until 10:45 pm. We exchanged gifts that night, and I got an Ipod Nano--huge surprise. He had it wrapped and hidden inside a slipper...and I was happy just with those and a flat iron for my sad hairstyle! Back to the Ipod--today--my excitement has all but evaporated b/c I have had so much trouble syncing music onto the darned thing. Maybe my old MP3 was not so bad, I am just cursed by music +technology?! I have had more success via his laptop but I know it should not be this hard. Half of America would not have them if it were. Right? I actually reinstalled Windows Media Player on my computer, a painfully long process and it won't even recognize any music on the Ipod at all. ANY help at all is appreciated. PLEASE.
I plan a post about gift hits and misses but tonight, I will begin by saying that the Sansa Shaker is nothing short of brilliant. Olivia could not be more pleased with that and her I-Dog. A very special elf preloaded her Shaker with about a dozen songs and that made it an instant hit. The external speaker: brilliant for this age. If only my $150 Ipod were so easy to load with music...Pin It
Sunday, December 23, 2007
If you are on it, you are lucky. My sweet girl wrote out this list before her shopping expedition at the Dollar Tree. That is our 3rd year for this tradition....she does all her Holiday shopping in one day, at one place, for one price. She puts a lot of thought into her selections too and finds some real gems. This year, Dave went along and Shelby too, neither of them seemed to quite grasp it like Olivia and I do! Shelby came home with two gifts: one for her MaMa, and one for her Dad. She handled many other things, and asked to buy several things, for Papa in particular. Those ideas included a Dragon Tales book and CD, a sheet of Princess stickers and something else that escapes me. Seems what makes her happy was to be a one size fits all approach. Next year might be better for her.
Back to Olivia though. She came home and after dinner, wrapped each one of her 10 gifts (turned out to be 11, she had to buy Aunt Kelly's cats a gift too) with so much care and thoughtfulness. If she knows your favorite color, your bow is that color. If you rate really high on the list, you got a special gift tag that she cut from the Little Debbie treats boxes. Each detail has so much meaning to her. She is really into giving. In fact, she wants to write a story about Santa being a giver. I could soak her sweetness up with a biscuit :)Pin It
Friday, December 21, 2007
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
Probably the biggest tradition of our Cookie Day each year, is the spritz cookie. My mom has always made these, for as long as I can remember. It's all about the dough, and the gun. The dough my Mom has perfected and if you keep it cold, you are good to go. The guns...those have come and gone through the years. Once my Mom's Mother's (my grandma, who I unfortunately never met) cookie gun finally quit working about five years ago, there was an ongoing search for a model to replace it. One that could do the job well. The electric or battery operated versions: no good. For my Mom, and probably my sister and I too, it would not be Christmas without spritz cookies, so the few years it was nearly impossible to squeeze out a good tree or wreath, we got a little worried. I am not sure where this one came from, but it works pretty close to the same way the original did. Here you see Shelby getting a lesson on the art of the spritz cookie from her MaMa. Not much sweeter than this.Pin It
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
This is the teacher's gift for Olivia's teacher. I got this adorable tree at Trader Joe's (totally my new Holiday go-to place!) for $10 and managed to keep it alive and green for a whole week. It came with that decorative spray in it so....with my all my craftiness...I used big glue dots to adhere each of those gift cards to the wire stem below each star and I replaced the area where it called for a photo, with a stamped: to and from. Let me just say, the parents were generous b/c the gift card total is approximately $200 and I also got things for the kids to use at recess too. I feel a little relief now that this is done, and will feel the ultimate sigh when the class party is complete tomorrow. Right now, I am just sweating the details of how to carry all this stuff into school!Pin It
Sunday, December 16, 2007
My grip on the platter is especially funny to me, but I was really just trying to keep the crackers from sliding off of it, not pose like one of the Price as Right girls!
On today's agenda is a Holiday Open House. You know I will be there with bells on, plate in hand!!
Friday, December 14, 2007
We are expecting a BIG snow here this weekend, combined with ice, which is really the bad part. I'd love to get snowed in for a weekend day, however, I do not want to miss our big "cookie day" which is planned for Saturday. Hmmph.Pin It
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
I decided to involve my kids a little in making their teachers' gifts. I bought 2 packs of $1 cards at Michaels, and 2 packs of coordinating stickers. I let each child (although for now, I only have pics of Shelby b/c Olivia was at school!) decorate the cards with one sticker each, and the envelope too. I printed a label for the back that said made by: child's name and also added their age...figuring that would explain why most of Shelby's stickers were upside down, and allow the secondary recipient to appreciate the concept. I hope the teachers can use these for thank you cards and if they don't, not much was invested. In the end, I put them in cello bags and tied them with ribbon.
Note: the teachers are getting other gifts too, this was just the part handmade by the kids!
Today, I treated myself (well actually my friend Mary Jo gave me a gift card) to a frappucino and asked if they had any holiday flavors. Oh yes, they do! I had a Peppermint White Chocolate Mocha. Delicious.
Seems I am on a binge. Not so good for the waistline, I can assure you of that.
This weekend more plans for minty goodness. It is our annual cookie day and one item on top the list of what to make: Peppermint Crunch Bark. Yum-O!
I also want to try an idea I saw here (scroll down a few days) for brownies with white icing and crushed candy canes on top. Pretty and good, I bet!
By the way, when I told two of the female employees at Trader Joes that I saw the Peppermint Marshmallows on a blog, they went crazy. Crazy with disbelief. Crazy laughing. Maybe I am one of the minority who is blog obsessed? I tell ya, I get some of my best ideas and recipes from them though! Pin It
Monday, December 10, 2007
Miss Shelby...on Santa's lap! I think I have one, or two, screaming photos from the past. One, on his lap but leaping off. One, perhaps with her in the vicinity of Santa (but not even sure if I have a photo of that, or it is in my memory). Last year, pretty sure she would not even go near him. Saturday? She waltzed right up there and said she wanted a: real chicky, puppy books, a real dog (only b/c Olivia said that which is a BIG problem) and the Island Princess.
And if you are reading this and saying something like: I will never dress my kids alike. You are full of it! You will do it just as long as they agree...just like me.
Oh, and about this picture. This is the ultimate display of laziness...a picture of a picture in a frame. Sorry!Pin It
Sunday, December 9, 2007
We celebrated this on Thursday morning. Basically, my kids woke up to stockings full of surprises! The most popular (and shown in their hands in nearly every picture) were the "Puppies in my Pocket". These are miniature animals, this style being particularly tiny, and they fit onto a bracelet to be worn as jewelry. A perfect marriage: jewelry and animals. Those are the things my kids love best...and makeup. So there was a little of that for good measure!
I found this tidbit online about the custom of celebrating St. Nick's Day.Pin It
Thursday, December 6, 2007
Wednesday, December 5, 2007
Tuesday, December 4, 2007
Monday, December 3, 2007
Friday, November 30, 2007
Thursday, November 29, 2007
Yesterday was our 9 year anniversary. I made a nice dinner at home and the girls helped me set the table and such. It was a big rush to get it all done from 5-5:30. b/c Olivia did not get home from art class until then. They loved bringing everything to the table (we typically gather our food buffet style at the counter and then move to the dining room to eat). They both LOVED drinking from the crystal water goblets and having candles lit. Funny things they said and did:
-when Olivia put salad dressing bottles on the table she said: these are not very fancy?!
-when Dave sat down Olivia said: what song do we sing?
-Shelby insisted Dave pour his beer into his goblet
-Olivia passed out two napkins to each of us: one for your lap and one for the table?!
They certainly made me feel like all the effort was worth it. I think it turned out great to include them.
I am more than knee deep in all my homemade (computer generated is more like it) Christmas gifts. I may show a few sneak peeks but not enough to ruin the surprise for the intended recipient. I think most of my blog readers, are probably on my gift list!
I also began collecting money for teachers' gifts and planning the school Christmas party. Oy! Pin It
Monday, November 26, 2007
I took this photo on Saturday...which I love...and my sister in law asked me to make a Christmas card. Usually, I'd start from scratch, spend hours and end up with something maybe this good. Instead, I used a free template from 2 peas. Love it! I shared it here b/c no one from that side of the family really follows my blog so I am not ruining any surprises.