Friday, December 9, 2011

School Picture Re-takes

Let me start by saying that I love my mother-in-law, I really do. However, a few of her traits that have been passed on to my daughter can be frustrating. And the worst one.....smiling with her mouth closed and her chin tucked down. My mother-in-law HATES getting her picture taken, and rarely smiles big in photos and my daughter tends to be the same way. Her first set of 3rd grade pictures were not cute (or flattering), so we opted for re-takes. Now that can be a scary situation because you are then stuck with whatever comes homes. So, to up the odds of a good photo, I coached and nagged Emily to "smile and show your teeth!" For whatever reason, this type of smile does not come with a tucked chin, and I sent her off on re-take day with a hopeful heart.............

And today she brought them home & I am one happy momma! My "not-so-baby girl anymore" is just adorable and this picture really shows her personality. I like it so much, I might actually get one hung up this year!!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Unexpected Visit to the Doctor

Em & I had an unexpected day at home today--well, we actually spent a good chunk of the day waiting at the doctor's office because we think she might have a bladder infection. No antibiotics, yet. We have to wait for the culture to come back--should be by Friday. Poor baby!

Her appointment was at 11:10am and we were told to arrive early & go to the lab, so we got there at about 10:30am. The lab was quick, so then it was off to wait for the doctor. And wait. And wait. Thank goodness for the iPod! Em played games for a while to pass the time, while Brownie & Elfie kept her company. I happened to have the small camera in my purse, so I snapped a few pictures to pass the time.

It was pretty close to 12:00pm before the nurse took us back, and luckily it wasn't too long before the doctor came in. She was new to us, a bit brusque, but efficient, and before we knew it she was gone. Then we waited for the paperwork. And waited. And waited. She finally brought it to us and we left the doctor's office at about 12:50pm. Almost two and a half hours later!

By then we were starving, so I offered to stop at McD's to pick up some lunch. Of course, that idea was met with great delight, and as an extra treat, we went to the Red Box and picked up a movie for the afternoon. After that some homework was done (by Em), a little on-line shopping (thank you, Amazon--Project Life 2012 is on it's way to me!), some dinner started (by me), and "poof," the day is almost over.

I had hoped to get upstairs and spend some time in the studio today working on my December Daily album......maybe later tonight. Perhaps I can at least get some pictures of my base pages finally posted, but don't hold your breath!!
Sunday, December 4, 2011

I Did It!!

I participated my first 5k this morning, and I actually ran the entire way!! Not bad for a chubby, 44 year old woman who just started running in September!! My goals were to run the entire race and to make it under 45 minutes (though I knew this would be pushing it, as I have not been running that pace at the gym.) Regardless of not quite meeting my second goal, I am VERY proud of myself!! 

My in-laws (and our nephew, Andrew) were in town this weekend, so they all come downtown with us. We didn't get too many pictures, as we got there just a few minutes before the race started. However, Mel did snap this shot of Emily & I right before the race.

When I crossed the finish line, Mel & Em were cheering me on and waiting for me with a dozen beautiful pink & red roses. I was so surprised! Mel also gave me a sweet card, telling me how proud he is of me. I am lucky to have such a supportive family! Unfortunately, they didn't get a picture of me crossing the finish line, but Mel took this photo of me as I was warming down afterwards. As you can see, it was a bit cloudy (and it was cold!) but at least it wasn't raining. For that I am extremely grateful! 

Now to decide if I want to do another race and try to beat my cool that I actually have a record to beat now!!!

Friday, December 2, 2011

It's December!!

I am so excited that December is finally here. Even though this month is always terribly busy and somewhat stressful, Christmas really is my favorite time of the year.

I love planning and shopping for Christmas gifts for my friends and family. I love listening to and singing Christmas songs. I love trying new recipes for our annual Cookie Exchange with friends. I love doing Holiday activities & projects with my 4th graders. I love seeing our tree lit up at night. I love seeing Emily's reaction to Elfie's antics every morning. I love watching her anticipation grow as Christmas draws closer each day.

And this year I get to add something else I love...watching my oldest nephew perform with his high school choir in an adaptation of The Grinch Who Stole Christmas:
(hopefully my sister-in-law will get this posted on YouTube so I can embed it here!) It is one of the cutest Christmas shows I've seen in a long time!

Being December 1st (or the 2nd by the time this posts), you may be wondering about progress on my December Daily album. I have to admit that I do not have my foundation pages all finished, but I do have about half of them done and I am very happy with how they are looking so far. I hope to get pictures posted sometime this weekend between the art workshop I am attending most of the day on Saturday, my first 5k run on Sunday, and my in-laws being here for the weekend. If it doesn't end up happening, I'm sure you can understand why! LOL!

I hope you are having a wonderful start to your holiday season!
Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Where Have I Been?!?

I have been away from Blog Land for some time now, but it has been for a good reason. I took a break from blogging because life was becoming a bit overwhelming and I needed to take some time to re-evaluate and re-prioritize. Being a full-time wife, mother, 4th grade teacher and Close to My Heart consultant was leaving me with no time to do the things I needed & wanted to do for myself. Things like eat healthier and exercise. Things like create things I want to create, when I want to create them, using whatever supplies I want. So over the last few months I have made some changes in my life:

1. I decided to step back from Close to My Heart. I am still a consultant (Jr. status at this point), but I am no longer sending newsletters, offering classes & workshops, or hosting crops. I am still taking orders, if anyone is interested, but I am not seeking out business. If there comes a time when I do not have enough sales to keep my Jr. status, I will say good-bye to CTMH (at least for a while.) However, I still love Close to My Heart & their products!

2. In light of stepping back from CTMH, I have allowed myself to start using and enjoying products from other companies again. I have found a love for Paper Trey Ink stamps & dies, and have had fun *collecting* 6x6 paper pads for card-making. I am planning on trying out Project Life when the new collections are released, and I am in the middle of making a December Daily album to document the upcoming holiday season. Another favorite I have stumbled upon is the Super Sketch Club from Scrapbook Generation and Allison Davis' books, Sketches for Scrapbooking. With these 2 resources I have done more scrapbook pages in the last few months than I have in the lase few years combined!

3. AND MOST IMPORTANTLY.....I have started taking the time to exercise on a regular basis. Right after school started in September I decided to try running again. Quite a while ago I had downloaded a C25K app on my ipod, called Interval Run, and tried starting, but I didn't get much farther than the first couple of runs. However, something clicked with me this time, and I am happy to say that I am now a C25K "graduate" who runs 2+ miles (albeit very slowly) at least 3 times a week. As crazy as it sounds, I actually enjoy running most of the time now and I am looking forward to December 4th, when I will achieve my goal of running my first 5K at the Portland Jingle Bell Run & Walk!!

I am hoping with these changes I can get back to blogging on a more regular basis again, as well. However, since Thanksgiving is upon us, I won't be posting again until some time next week. I plan on spending several days with the people I am most thankful for--my family!! HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Happy Mother’s Day!!

I hope all my friends out there in Blog-Land are having a wonderful day!! My in-laws were here this weekend, so we took mom-in-law out for breakfast this morning and later on today we are going to go spend some time with my mom. In the meantime, I get some coveted quiet time just hanging out at home!
Thought I would share the card I made for my mom…….
I finally inked up my Button Boutique set from Papertrey Ink. It is soooo fun to create with!! I also used the coordinating dies for the buttons and the button card.
I also finally broke out the seam binding and used my Copic markers to get perfectly matched colors. Not too bad for my first try, I think!
And to follow another current trend I have been seeing, I decided to really decorate up the inside of the card. Pretty cute, no?? The great thing was, I had those buttons left over from making the card front, and they worked perfectly for the inside!
As you may or may not know, cards this bulky have a hard time going into a regular envelope. However, I planned ahead for this and decorated a clear box (that PTI stamps come in) for it instead.
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Since the box is a bit bigger than the card, I used some of the extra seam binding I colored to use as a filler. I really like the way it looks!! I am so happy with the way it turned out, and I’m sure Mom will love it as well!!!

STAMPS: Button Boutique, Tag Its #2, Tag Its #3, Signature Series: Dress Form, Love Lives Here (Papertrey Ink); Eclectic Edges, Sans Alphabet (CTMH)
PAPER: Nana’s Nursery: Baby Boy (DCWV); colonial white, creme brulee, sweet leaf, twilight cardstock (CTMH)
INK: bamboo, creme brulee, petal, sweet leaf, twilight (CTMH); EMBELLISHMENTS: hemp, adhesive pearls (CTMH); Spica glitter pen (Copic); seam binding (colored with Copic markers), flowers (from my stash)
TOOLS: Button Up #1, Buttoned Up #2, Button Card, Collection, Parisian doily, butterfly, Signature Series butterfly, Limitless Layers: 1 3/4” circle collection dies (PTI); rectangle label die (Spellbinders), heart punch (Martha Stewart), label punch, word window punch (Stampin’ Up), border punch (Fiskars)
SIZE: card approx. 4 1/4” x 5 1/2”; box approx 6” x 6”
Sunday, January 30, 2011

“Be Mine” Treat Holder


I have been eyeing this die from SU for a long time. As soon as it came out, I knew I wanted it, but I resisted. Then school started this year and I met my new students, and then I met the parents. Well, one of my parents happens to be a SU rep, and I no longer had an excuse NOT to place an order. So of course, this die was the first thing on my list!!


I love how this little box goes together. It is really neat how it closes without needing any ribbon or adhesive!! A bunch of these may end up in the staff room this February!!

Project: Be Mine Treat Holder
All supplies are Close to My Heart unless noted
STAMPS: C1403 In the Month of February, D1222 Tiny Typewriter Alphabet
PAPER: X7134B Sweetheart Level 2
INK: Z2166 Exclusive Inks Tulip, Z2102 Exclusive Inks Baby Pink
EMBELLISHMENTS: Z1393 Mini-Medley: Black brads
TOOLS: Candy Wrapper Bigz Die—Stampin’ Up, Designer Label Punch—Stampin’ Up, Modern Label Punch—Stampin’ Up
SIZE: Approx. 2” x 1 3/8” x 1 3/8”

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Hershey Kisses Treat


This quick and easy project is fun to make and maybe even get the kids involved! In fact, I may Help Em make them for her classmates this year (but with only 3 Kisses—this one holds 5.)


You need a 4 inch piece of cardstock that is long enough to hold however many Kisses you want to include lined up. On the 4” side, score at 1/2”, then at 1 3/4”, and then at 2 3/4”. Glue the kisses to the one inch section (I just used my ATG). Then adhere the 1 1/4” flap to the 1/2” flap and embellish as desired.

See? Easy-peasy!!

Project: Hershey Kisses Holder
All supplies are Close to My Heart unless noted

STAMPS: D1283 Say It in Style, D1408 A Little Everything
PAPER: X7134B Sweetheart Level 2
INK: EZ2105 Exclusive Inks Black
TOOLS: Heart Punches—Martha Stewart
ETC: Hershey Kisses
SIZE: Approx. 1” x 1” x 4 1/2”

Valentine’s Workshop


What: Make these adorable goodies for the Sweethearts in your life and see the NEW SPRING/SUMMER 2011 IDEA BOOK

Tuesday, February 8th at 7 p.m. or Thursday,
February 10th at 7 p.m.

Shannon's home in Damascus

scissors, paper piercer, adhesive (tape runner, glue dots, foam tape)

$6 for 3 treat holders and one card (contact me for cost if you would like to make multiples of any item)

by Thursday, February 3rd to reserve your spot


Friday, January 7, 2011

January Wings Workshop


Join me on Thursday, January 20 at 7 p.m. or Saturday, January 22 at 11:30 a.m. to make this beautiful layout and the 4 cards shown below. Cost is only $10!! Or take advantage of the January Special in the Inspirations brochure. (see below for details)

Bring your own adhesive (tape runner, glue dots & foam tape), scissors and paper piercer. Also bring a glue stick if making the BONUS banner, (see below for details)

RSVP, payment , and order (if applicable), due by Thursday, January 13th (this is a firm deadline, as I must order supplies).

Please call or e-mail me ASAP if you wish to take advantage of the Wings WOTG/Inspirations Special!! Inspirations special is available only until January 31.

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JANUARY SPECIAL: Upgrade to Workshop on the Go Kit for $29.95 and in addition to the layouts and cards you also get :
*a full Level 2 Wings paper pack (minus what is used for the workshop)
*the exclusive Wings WOTG stamp set (used on the layout and 2 of the cards)
*a package of black Mini-Medleys (minus what is used for the workshop)
*one Spray Pen (I am so excited to show you the fun new tool!!)
*a full-color workshop guide for these projects and a BONUS banner project which can also be created at the workshop with the purchase of a My Creations Banner (SCROLL DOWN FOR AN EXAMPLE)**
*the opportunity to purchase the 5 stamps sets from the Inspirations Brochure at a great discount (including the GORGEOUS Bohemian Alphabet, used on the layout above, for only $25--it retails for $34.95!!)
*the opportunity to get the January Stamp of the Month at a discount or free (and you don't have to spend $100 to get it free this month!!)
**regular shipping charges also apply to all purchases

Here is an example of what you can do with the Wings kit & My Creations Banner. This banner was created by my talented Close to My Heart sister, Lisa Stenz.