Wednesday, July 29, 2009

True Confessions

Do you ever get so caught up in trying to organize life that you forget to enjoy life?  That seems to be my trouble.  While organization is one of my strengths, it quickly gets me into trouble as I try to anticipate all of life’s foibles.

It’s not that I don’t enjoy life, I just get caught in the what ifs.  For example, this baby is due on Aug. 24th, the first day of school.  Instead of being thankful that I got all summer with my girls and that I would miss the first six weeks of school and be almost to the season of holidays when I go back, I have struggled with the fact that I don’t have sick days stored up and that I am going to loose at least a month’s pay.  I have gone over things in my mind repeatedly as to how to “work out” life.  As if I have any control over when this child will be born anyway!

Control is so hard for me to give up and being pregnant really reinforces the lack of control in life. As exciting as pregnancy is, I have to work really hard while pregnant to not become totally psycho.  I have a history of early miscarriages and so I spend the first trimester in uncertainty.  When the doctor finally gives the green light in the second trimester, I still constantly evaluate my body as to how I am feeling and what is going on.  I also think about those 5 or so babies that didn’t make it and I wonder why. Knowing that I couldn’t do anything to save the other pregnancies doesn’t make it any easier.. it’s once again back to control.

I know we all face issues of control and this was hit home the other night while reading the book Parenting Children with Health Issues.  I remarked to Doug that no wonder Maddie wants to control everything and everyone around her as she has so little control of her life.  She doesn’t get any say in when/how/what medicines she takes every day, what procedures are done to her and so on. She doesn’t even get to decide if she is going to play a sport or if she is going to play outside, the needs of her body control her childhood wishes.  Doug’s response to this was yes, but she still doesn’t get to tell her sister what to do all of the time! 

So how is this different for any of the rest of us? Since I feel like life is nuts and careening out of my control, my response becomes one of trying to control all of the “little” things in life that I can. When in actuality I should be thanking God that I don’t have to try to control things. That the picture is much, much bigger than my own little world.

Today I remind myself of the words in Matthew 6:25-34 and place my trust in Him.

I tell you not to worry about your life. Don't worry about having something to eat, drink, or wear. Isn't life more than food or clothing? Look at the birds in the sky! They don't plant or harvest. They don't even store grain in barns. Yet your Father in heaven takes care of them. Aren't you worth more than birds?

Can worry make you live longer? Why worry about clothes? Look how the wild flowers grow. They don't work hard to make their clothes. But I tell you that Solomon with all his wealth wasn't as well clothed as one of them. God gives such beauty to everything that grows in the fields, even though it is here today and thrown into a fire tomorrow. He will surely do even more for you! Why do you have such little faith? Don't worry and ask yourselves, "Will we have anything to eat? Will we have anything to drink? Will we have any clothes to wear?" Only people who don't know God are always worrying about such things. Your Father in heaven knows that you need all of these. But more than anything else, put God's work first and do what he wants. Then the other things will be yours as well.

Don't worry about tomorrow. It will take care of itself. You have enough to worry about today.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Technique Tuesday: Oh Baby Box

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As we prepare for baby #3, I am determined to get as many memories preserved as possible before her arrival. Given that I have yet to scrapbook or even print out pictures from my pregnancy with Lexi and she is closing in on five years old, I know that if I wait to work on this baby’s memorabilia, she could easily be 20 before it happens! So, to that end, I have worked to make my life easier and to preserve memories at the same time!

Here is what I came up with.  A few months ago, I created this box and file pockets and am doing my best to keep up!  Some of the weeks were easy and some I haven’t printed pictures yet (oh shock..)  However, on the whole, I am thrilled with what I have so far!

My goal is that over the next week or so to get the box completed.  I have the appointment reminder cards and things like that I will add to the box.  I am not putting a lot on the pocket itself about my showers as I will scrapbook those events, but for now, the memorabilia can be stored in the box.  Then, if it takes me 20 years to get to scrapping the showers, I will have all of my memories together!

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I am also going to make a few pocket pages for welcome cards and a visitor page to go in the box.  Looking back, I wish I had done something like this for Lexi, daughter #2..

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

A Vintage Craft Project

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I found these two “bowls” at a garage sale and just couldn’t pass them up. Nope, I have no attachment to them in that I’m not related to the person who made the craft or do I even know the people that were given the cards.. but I was intrigued nonetheless.

After talking to the daughter that was getting rid of these pieces, I am challenged to find a way to make something like this, but to also incorporate the signatures and notes inside the cards. That’s the reason she didn’t keep these treasures, there isn’t anything personalized on the project.

Can you imagine the work that went into these pieces?? The cards have been cut out, laminated in some way, shaped and then stitched together. It’s just too bad that all of this work doesn’t showcase the people who got these cards.  I tell you, I’m gonna find a way to make something like this and include a picture of the person and some dates!

I’ll post what I come up with… whenever that may be :)vintage card project 003 Large Web view
Have a great day!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Technique Tuesday: Mini Paper Purses

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I found these wonderful little purse instructions at Living Creatively, for the instructions and template click here.

I decided to make these little goodie bags for the upcoming scrapbook retreat I am going to this weekend.  I’ve made a point over the last couple of years to take treats, so I didn’t want to break tradition :)  I haven’t decided what I am going to put in them yet though.. embellishments or candy, it’s hard to decide!

Making these was fun and easy!  I made them a little more work as I used the button blanks and added the paper to the backs, you could save a step and just use colored buttons!  paper purse collage Large Web view My supplies were green cardstock and CTMH’s Animal Cookies papers plus CTMH’s waxy flax, brads, tulip ink, stamp and rhinestone.  The silver paint is not CTMH.  I really like the sponge dauber on the paint and chose to blot it on so that I could have a textured finish for silver. I also went ahead and sewed the edge of the front per the instructions, but you could just draw in the sewn line.

The button is attached to the flap, but the flap does not secure to the front of the purse.  The weight of the button keeps the purse closed.  You could always get a small piece of Velcro is you were concerned with the purse opening.paper purses 015 Large Web view So that’s it.  I can’t wait to give these out at the retreat!! Now to figure out how to pack up all my scrap stuff and take it with me without it putting me into labor!!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Working on site today..

I am working on creating my own background, so if you happen across this blog today and it is funky and hard to read, sorry!! My computer makes things that should take 30 minutes take 4 hours! It makes me want to scream!!!!

So, check back tomorrow and hopefully you will see an all new, created by me background. Until then, who knows...

Friday, July 17, 2009

A Gift for a Baptism

My niece is being baptized tomorrow and I wanted to make something to help memorialize this very special day.  Knowing that my sister is not crafty and doesn’t like clutter, I decided to go with a framed piece that Abby can put in her room or they can just hang somewhere.

I originally was going to make this 12x12 as that’s what the paper is, but Wal-Mart was out of the right size frames.. so I chose to do an 11x17 frame instead.  I really like how it turned out and that there is room for additional pictures and journaling. 


It’s not really fancy, but the layering of paper is more obvious in person than in the picture.100_1102

Creating this has inspired me to work more on my faith book.   There just always seems to be more projects going on at once than time to do them!! By the way, my dad’s album at 60 pages is full and I haven’t even gotten to us kids!! I guess volume 2 will have to start with the kids.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Technique Tuesday: Using and Protecting Memorabilia

As I have posted about previously, I am in the midst of creating a heritage album for my dad’s 60th birthday.  I am well under way and feel pretty good about how it is going to turn out.

One of the challenges I have is the volume of pictures and memorabilia that need to be a part of the book.  I realize that we are very lucky to have this challenge, but it is hard to prioritize in order to get everything in just one book.

Here are a few of my solutions: 

  1. Get a digital scan of everything.
  2. Make extra copies of pictures that you know that you want to cut up.
  3. Use a good graphics program to take scanned images and make them into photographs that are useable.
  4. Be willing to print some things out on your printer at home so that they have a different texture than a traditional photograph.
  5. Purchase good scrapbook and heritage supplies, like clear pockets that can be opened, flaps for extra pictures and good quality paper and embellishments. (If you don’t know where to get this stuff, email me)

Now for the pictures of this in practice:

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On this page I have incorporated the original newspaper clipping as well as a couple of original prints.  The top print is very faded, but I have a scanned copy, so I decided that I would rather have the original here.  Then lower on the page I have 2 photographs from scanned original documents.  The white and blue print is of my grandfather’s birth certificate and the black print is his corrected birth certificate.  I really wanted to have these in the book, but the originals are full page size and I didn’t want to take up that much room.

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You can also use different size page protectors for variety in the book.  The western union telegram and letters are from WWII and I wanted them highlighted differently than the pages around them, so using a smaller page protector, broke up the page without changing the theme.

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Another technique is taking an item that would go in a shadowbox like my dad’s first pair of shoes and taking a picture and using them in the layout.  Also on this page are scanned pictures of the front and back of his birth certificate and letters that his father wrote him.

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And finally, for my grandmother’s page I wanted to include the lock of baby hair (from 1926) so I put it in the clear protective pocket.  Additionally, the blue print is a copy of her birth certificate.

One of the coolest things that is coming from doing this album is all of the writing samples I am getting.  By scanning in the legal documents, we are able to get full legal names,  the treasured photo album that has yellowed and is falling apart has become individual pictures complete with my grandfather’s journaling and the notes on the backs of the pictures are not lost but have become companions to the pictures.

Yes, scanning in the front and back of  a thousand pictures has been time consuming, but so worth it. We now have a big portion of our family history in a format that will last!  I can’t wait to show my dad the completed book!!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Sweet Summer Fun

Some of the sweetest moments come unexpectedly.  Tonight was one of them.  We didn’t get great pictures, but oh the memories created will last a lifetime.

The other day I bought a big blowup pool 1/2 price (thanks Walgreens!!) and this morning Doug set it up.  The girls were so excited!  They swam this morning and then tonight after dinner they were getting back into the pool when my dad (Papa) showed up to return tables from a garage sale today.  Needless to say, he was not dressed for swimming, but he shocked the girls by emptying his pockets and jumping into the pool with them!

They were enthralled! Oh how I wish the pictures were clearer, but the joy on their faces while playing with my dad in the pool will stay in my memory forever!swimming pool fun 002 Large e-mail view

swimming pool fun 005 Large e-mail view swimming pool fun 003 Large e-mail view Here are a few more pictures of tonight’s fun.

swimming pool fun 028 Large e-mail viewswimming pool fun 030 Large e-mail view And in case you were wondering what I was doing the whole time…swimming pool fun 004 Large e-mail viewDo you know how hard it is to try to do a pedicure on yourself at almost 34 weeks pregnant???!!!?!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

A Prayer Request

This is from my sister, Libby.  Her blog is

They are adopting Hudson from S. Korea.  Hudson is 20 months old.  Here is her post. We appreciate all prayers!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Hit a snag, gonna whine a little now!

Our wonderful caseworker at Dillon International investigated why our immigration clearance is taking so long. It seems they misplaced our paperwork. It has been there a few days shy of 2 months!!!!!!!! I'm not gonna lie and say that I'm handling things super well. My heart is sick. My baby is growing up without me! My husband is a school principal and the timing of this is starting to stink. I spoke with a travel agent today and she said August is the most expensive time to fly from Korea back to the US. So, our flights will be more expensive than if we'd flown in July. The reason is because a huge number of college students come over here from S. Korea and they are all returning to the US after summer break. UGH!!! I know that God's timing is perfect and He sees the big picture, beginning to end! Hudson is in good hands and with a precious foster family. Please pray pray pray for speedy paperwork!!!!!!

Thankful Thursday: The gift of clothes and a good Doctor visit for Maddie

Coming into the home stretch of this pregnancy has me psycho in a bit of a tizzy.  You forget from one baby to the next how much stuff they need!  Well, you do when they are 5 years apart each time.

On Tuesday I was worried about the fact that we only had a couple of receiving blankets, 4 pairs of socks, a few sleepers and one t-shirt.  I just kept thinking of how often I was going to have to wash if that’s all the clothes we had.

Yesterday, this is what my sister Melody brought over!!clothes 001 Large e-mail view 
No those aren’t diapers, they are ALL 0-6 months clothes!! Can you believe it??? We had tons of fun sorting them out and looking at everything.

Mel’s baby is a year old, so we have the benefit of her stuff.. at least until my baby outgrows hers.. :)

It was so amazing once we got everything into piles by size and type. You can not believe the gift it is to be given beyond measure!

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If that wasn’t enough a friend of mine provided us with a pack and play complete with baby changer and a couple of very fancy toys!!

And last but not least, Maddie had her yearly well child visit yesterday and looks great!  She is right on target for all of her milestones and her blood pressure (what we have to watch most carefully due to kidney disease) was great! As her doctor said, she looks wonderful!  I am so thankful that we have learned how to manage her disease so much more effectively over this last year. We look forward to her continued good health in the midst of a chronic disease and are so thankful to have doctors who truly care about Maddie!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Interactive pages and a chance to win a gift!


Don’t you just love looking at scrapbook pages where you know the people had fun.. well, I do :) So creating this scrapbook spread was very enjoyable as I couldn’t help smiling at all of our antics out on the lake!  I have so many pictures that I chose to dedicate one spread to outside adventures and I’ll do another of the inside craziness!

First, once again I have used one of my premade pages as my base.  That just makes all the difference in the world.  Instead of spending time deciding how I am going to make the page, I use the time to do a few “extras” like an accordion card incorporated into the page, a few tags for journaling and I used one of the incredibly handy flip flaps from CTMH!

Here is a close up of the left side of the page with the flap closed.


And here it is open


Here is the right side of the page with the accordion card closed.


And here it is open



Can you believe I got so many pictures on one spread?? Leave me a comment as to the number of pictures I used on the spread and I’ll send a random lucky person a little gift!!

A Blog Award.. how fun!

About a month ago I got an email about getting a blog award.  I thought how cool is that!  So thanks Janelle at for the kudos!  It made me feel great, even though it did take me a month to post about it :)


The reason it took me so long to post about it is that I am supposed to pass on the award to other blogs and I don’t have many blogs I read, so I was kinda stumped as to what to do.

So here goes. The rules for this one are:

1) Accept the award, post it on your blog together with the name of the person who has granted the award, and his or her blog link.

2) Pass the award to 15 other blogs that you’ve newly discovered.Remember to contact the bloggers to let them know they have been chosen for this award.

I am sending the Lovely Blog Award to the following blogs in no particular order..

  1. Nona’s blog at
  2. Megan’s blog at
  3. My sister Libby’s blog at
  4. Andrea’s blog at
  5. Karin’s blog at
  6. Linny’s blog at
  7. Jessica’s blog at
  8. Chelsea’s blog at

Well, that’s all the blog awards I have. While I read other blogs, these are the only ones that I have bookmarked on my computer :)

If you have a blog out there that you want me to read, send me your link and maybe I’ll come up with my own award for you!!

Have a great day!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

My Big Clearance Sale

So I went to the doctor today for my regular appointment and got the good news that it could just be another 5 weeks.. (or more.. but let’s not dwell on the more) till baby arrives. 

Now I am REALLY motivated to clean out my wares.  So here are a few pictures of things I’ve got for sale.  If you like any of them, the link on the right sidebar will take you to my My ETSY Shop shop.
premade page sale Large Web view  premade page sale 017 Large Web viewpremade page sale 013 Large Web viewpremade page sale 025 Large Web view 

Also, don’t forget I’ve got TONS of scrapbook pages on clearance as well!

If you need cards or bulk handmade paper items I’ve got those too…

Have a great day!  And for those of you that might be wondering, my technique for today is to CLEAN OUT and stop HORDING! :)

Monday, July 6, 2009

A great trip to the Grocery Store! What???

No, I didn't go to the grocery store in the middle of the night or by myself :) I had both Maddie and Lexi with me and it was the middle of the afternoon. But I am so pumped and proud of myself!

I printed out my list of groceries from my website and looked to see what we needed. Well, we needed about everything on the list as this program is designed for you to COOK! What??? So we got the list and went to the store.

Maddie helped me check prices and I taught her to compare price by the ounce. She really got into this being that she loves math! Lexi got in the way and jumped around a lot, but that's Lexi.

At the end of our adventure, my basket was full of food that has to be cooked or consumed this week. Meaning, no prepackaged items except for breakfast cereal and the "treat" we each chose. I didn't know a cart could look like this!

At the check out, we spent more than if we had just purchased the list items, but man, we bought fresh fruits and veggies (as well as laundry detergent). I figured it out and if we had only purchased the items on our list we would have spent $10 less than what e-mealz allotted.

Instead, I bought just about everything we need for breakfast, lunch and dinner for the next week and spent on average $1.50 per person per meal. Now if we'll just eat at home. But I am pumped about it as I don't have this looming thing called "what's for dinner" hanging over my head!

Well, I'm off to scrap a bit before making Italian Chicken Roll Ups and Parmesan Potatoes for dinner!!

Premade Scrapbook Page Blowout Sale

Wish you had to the time, energy, money or space to create a beautiful keepsake for a treasured family member, child or even yourself??

Well, from July 6 to whenever baby comes (Mid August due date) take advantage of my Blowout Sale!!

Save 50% to 80% on premade scrapbook pages!

I am having a Premade Scrapbook Page Blowout Sale in order to 1) get rid of some of my horde of papers and 2) to make money to purchase a new carseat /stroller combo travel system for baby.

These premade pages are 12x12 and are double page layouts.
You only see one of the pages in the pictures.
Email me if you want to see both pages..

Each double spread is on sale for $5
(not embellished or personalized)Add to Cart
or $8 customized and embellished
(theme specific stamping of title and ribbon, brads and things like that)Add to Cart
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I have LOTS of premade pages and TONS of paper, so if you have a theme you would like pages for, let me know and I probably have something that works :)

Here is a list of some of the styles

  • Outdoor
  • Floral
  • Picnic
  • Girly Girl
  • Cowgirl/Cowboy
  • Rustic
  • Polka dot
  • School
  • Beach
  • Birthday
  • Fun in the Sun
  • Road Trip
  • Vacation
  • All Boy
  • Heritage
  • Color specific

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So why is this such a great deal???
Well, let me tell you :)

The going rate for custom pages is $15 to $20 a page plus supplies!! EEEK!!!

So for a custom double page layout you could spend about $50 a spread or right now, $8. How’s that for a blowout sale??

View Cart

In your cart you can add as many spreads as you would like, and in paypal you can send me information for style and color. If your pages have to be mailed, send your zipcode with order so that I can get a shipping quote.


Saturday, July 4, 2009

Sweet Lexi

I love this picture of Lexi.  She is so precious in it, but you still see her vibrant personality!!lexi page 002 Large Web view

Supply list for this page (all are Close To My Heart products):

  • Reflections Scrapbook Program (for the layout)
  • Bella papers
  • Dimensional Elements Borders
  • Fancy Cuts Borders
  • Friendship Alphabet stamp
  • Be True Stamp
  • Bamboo Brad
  • Desert Sand and Hollyhock inks

I’m going to frame this one!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

The long awaited cutting guide

Cutting Guide for 20 page Imagine Workshop

I don’t know how well these pictures are going to come through when printing on your end, but at least you can see how I put the pieces together on the paper to cut them out.  The pictures are originally much larger, but in order to post them, they have to be smaller.  So, if you need them bigger, please email me and I will email you the four pictures individually.cutting guide for 20 page workshop 005 Large Web view

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Last note, piece 2a has 2 options.  You can use the paper labeled BT4b if you want it to match the piece 2f or you can use the paper BT5b so that you can save and not cut into BT4b.

You will have leftover pieces for mix and matching as well.  This is the plan for 20 pages, that is why you don’t have #7,#8 or #13 layout instructions.

Good luck and I want to see your completed projects :)

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

8x8 Gift Album using Imagine Layouts

Here is an album that I have been working on.  I used my Imagine workshop once again and converted all of the dimensions to 8x8 instead of 12x12.  I really like this size album for a gift.

Here are the pages prior to pictures…

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And here they are with pictures.  I really like how nice a 4x6 picture looks on an 8x8 page!

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I have 2 more double layouts left that I can add to the book plus paper.  Going from 12x12 to 8x8 allows you to get almost double from a piece of paper.

So Libby, if you have any more pictures you want added to the book.. email them to me so that I can get them in tomorrow!! Hope it’s what you wanted :)