Friday, July 24, 2009

Layouts and Miscellany

We had a delicious day! I realized last night I had WAY too much chicken thawed out, so invited friends for dinner. Ginger chicken, marinaded and grilled tofu, stir fry mostly local veggies, margarita (I see no problem with this combination), yeasty beers (I don't get the yeast thing, but the men seemed happy with it), and brownies for dessert. And I hope our kids didn't rot TOO many brain cells in front of the Wii for 3+ hours. Jonah broke/dislocated his toe (long story) so he's not up for much other than sitting around in his cast, thus our laxity in the amount of computer time.

This is from our trip to St. Paul last summer. One of my favorite set of photos from the year!

Irene Alexeeva Dreamer in Me (cloudy background, newspaper swirls, circular word art)
Valerie Randall Avalon (mushroom, flower, greenery)
Jen Wilson Designs (oval turtle word art)
Katie Pertiet Snap Frame Brushes No. 4
Kristin Aagard Turtle (title, ribbon and frame)
2peas scratchy toad font
Jan Hicks Coin Folder Chip styles
Heather Roselli (right turtle)
Kimberly Cameron Exploring My Backyard (left turtle)

Photos from the Children's Museum in St. Paul, story pre-dates the phtotos:

12/07: Christopher said, “Hurray, pesto for lunch! Mommy, can we please have dumpling squash too?” You gotta love a child who is excited about eating vegetables! Up until almost 2 years, Michael would eat almost anything. But then he developed a “vegetable detector,” as in, no vegetables allowed past these lips! 9/07: Michael accidentally ate a lima bean in a bite of pasta...shhhh.Fast forward to Jan/09: All of a sudden M ATE the broccoli on his place and pronounced it delicious...have aliens replaced our son?!
Amanda McGee Country Garden
Shalae Tippetts Aged Frames
Melissa Renfro Lifted Photos: Weathered
Sarah Batdorf Basic Shadows styles (color match shadow lends a beautiful realistic shadow that reflects the background color behind your object)
Brandy Hackman A Little Worn Out (stamped letters)
Brandy Murry Nuts & Berries (lima beans seed packet)
Candara font

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Give a Hoot

I've got a couple pages left to finish from last spring, but otherwise am working hard on last summer's photos now. Need to post pics of some paper pages and projects too! We've been motivated this weekend: some highlights include Jeff put up an umbrella-style clothesline I've been asking for, and prompted by a messy tie-dyed t-shirt (who knew it would bleed WHILE he was wearing it?!?!), I shampooed the living room carpet this morning. As noted on Facebook, Jeff spent at least an hour pulling around 30-40 POUNDS of thistles from our neighbors flowers and yard. The wife has been gone for almost 2 months visiting family out of the country, and they didn't know much about gardening to begin with (she's asked for my assistance when she gets back), and we were tired of thistles growing on our property, so Jeff took them up at the source!

This has to be one of my fastest digi pages to date, but I really like how it turned out. This is a just-because page, not a challenge page:)

I've always been fascinated by owls, and remember dissecting owl pellets at summer nature camp in Cass County as a child. Heather led the "Nocturnal Raptors" day at McFarland Park and even 18 month old Michael paid attention for awhile. The owl is his favorite animal in the "Clifford's Animal Sounds" book. We even got to dissect pellets again, and Christopher kept the bones we found. We've heard great horned owls several times out our windows at home and I even saw one on top of Maha's house next door in the night--HOOOOO, who who who HOOOOO!
Heidi Larsen Hootfest June
Michelle Coleman Boho Flourish Brushes
Jessica Sprague photo mask
Bottled Fart font (love the font, if not the name, lol)

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Just For Fun

As seen on Janet's along if you like!:) I'd love to see all your answers as well.

1. What is your current obsession? Scrapbooking…isn’t that always my obsession? ;) (DH might argue my obsession is purchasing Scrap Girls supplies, but I plead innocence)
2. What is your weirdest obsession? Some might say scrapbooking on the computer is a rather weird obsession…
3. What are you wearing today? At the moment, my owl pajamas
4. What would you eat for your last meal? Our yummy steak/veggie kabobs with slightly spicy marinade
5. What's the last thing you bought? See number 1
6. What are you listening to now? Silence!
7. What's your favorite ice cream flavor? S’Mores
8. If you could have a house totally paid for, fully furnished, anywhere in the world, where would it be? Hm…in my dream world, Tuscany! But realistically, Ames…does it come with an interior designer too? I want it painted and decorated and landscaped too, lol
9. If you could go anywhere in the world for the next hour, where would you go? Only for one hour? Almost not worth it, but anywhere in Europe.
10. Which language would you want to learn? Like Janet said, Italian may be impractical, but it’s my dream language. Practically, Spanish. The interpreter who volunteers at Free Clinic is most excellent, but it would be so much easier if I could just talk to the Hispanic patients myself.
11. What's your favorite quote (for now)? I’m not too much of a quote person…
12. What's your favorite color? purple
13. What is your favorite time of day? evening
14. What is your favorite piece of clothing in your wardrobe? Well not for summer, obviously, but I’m really into cords lately.
15. What is your dream job? ? A PA job in a totally revamped health care system in US?
16. What's your favorite magazine? none
17. If you had $100 now, what would you spend it on? Pssst: see number 1 again!
18. Do you admire anyone's style? Scrapbooking-wise? Lots of people, but I’d have to say Brandy Hackman at Scrap Girls
19. Describe your personal style. Scrapbooking-wise? Eclectic.
20. What are you going to do after this? Should consider going to bed.
21. What are your favorite movies? Don’t really have one. I’ve seen Shrek more times than I can count though…and that was pretty much BEFORE I had kids, lol
22. What's your favorite fruit? Blueberries, strawberries, Honeycrisp apples, peaches, cherries, grapes, pineapple, I think you get the picture…
23. What inspires you? Scrapbooking-wise? A good collection or kit of items, or a great photo…
24. Do you collect something? Um, yeah, see number 1 yet AGAIN!!

Sunday, July 5, 2009


Other things we've been up to:
We spent almost a week in the Black Hills area of South Dakota and survived (and even enjoyed) the experience. We actually weren't even sure we'd get there with 3 kids;) We had contingency plans to stop in Atlantic (my parents), Omaha, or Sioux Falls if we didn't think we could get clear there due to crying, complaining, fighting, etc.

We drove through the night, leaving around midnight. Christopher briefly woke up when we put him in his car seat but settled back down again pretty quickly. We reclined his seat just a bit to help him keep comfortable. Michael slept straight up in his full car seat. C uses a booster now so of course the back is just the seat of the van. William had no problems sleeping in his car seat. All of them awoke when we stopped to get gas around 4:30am, and Michael and Christopher were still awake until around 6.

The first day we ate brunch at Perkins when we got to Rapid City, checked in to our hotel, and went to Mount Rushmore. This was pretty much the most touristy thing we did all week. We didn't even go to Wall Drug;) Jeff & I would have liked to do the whole walk at MR, but it's 250 steps according to the sign and the kids were dragging by then. So we left to drive the Iron Tunnel Road, created specifically for views of MR and the surrounding terrain. When you exit one of the tunnels cut into the rock, there's a fabulous view of MR!:) Oops, forgot to mention Dinosaur Park, the first place we went that day...there's even a geocache there (see below)
To see more photos, check out these Facebook links: Dinosaur Park
Mount Rushmore

Jeff printed out info for several of the hundreds, if not thousands, of geocaches in the area (see THIS for more info). The tunnel road contained 3 caches, and we took turns staying with 2 sleeping little boys in the van pulled off on one of the convenient turnoffs along the road while Christopher and one parent hiked up to look for the cache. Christopher quickly got into the whole hunting for the cache thing, and also became a master junior geologist. He loved all the mica, pyrite, slate, and quartz in the area.

We spent the next 2 days pretty much geocaching from morning til evening, returning back to Rapid City in enough time to eat a late dinner and spend about an hour in the pool before tumbling into bed to repeat same the next day. William proved very pack-and-go-able:) Friends lent us their small hiking baby-backpack (we have a larger more unwieldy one of our own) and sometimes I'd use the baby sling. We protected him from the sun and used minimal amounts of sunscreen on his exposed legs and arms.

Our final day we checked out of the hotel, went to the Air and Space Museum (pretty small), and did the scenic drive in the Badlands. We spent that night at a hotel in Mitchell, then on to DeSmet to visit Laura Ingalls Wilder's homestead from her later childhood years. Then the mind-numbing 6 or so hour drive home. I had plenty of activities along so the kids wouldn't "have" to watch the dual screen DVD player too much, but by this time, there was no way we would have gotten home without a good dose of screentime;)
The Badlands
Laura Ingalls Wilder Homestead

We got home around 10pm that night and let the kids stay up and run around and play to blow off some excess energy while we ran around putting away as much as possible as quickly as possible and start laundry. The kids were finally all asleep about midnight and we all blissfully remained asleep until 10am (well William nursed at 6 or so but went right back to sleep, lol).


Saturday, July 4, 2009


I've been a bad blogger again...time to play catch up with the Jen Wilson challenge layouts! Participation is dwindling (to remain eligible for the grand prize you must have completed ALL of them on time), but I am still having fun with this and it is stretching my skills and forcing me to SB things I otherwise might never do or keep putting off forever.

Week 23: How does your family celebrate the start of summer/end of school? Include metal, something hanging, at least one picture, and plenty of journaling.
The basic "sketch" of this layout came from a layout Felicia in Iowa did here earlier in the Project 52 challenges. Thanks for the inspiration Felicia!:)
We spent one day of our mini-vacation at Waterpark of America. We chose the indoor park to avoid the need for sunscreen and hats. The weather was also a little iffy for an expensive outdoor park. Michael was fearless as usual and he ran us ragged going around and around and around the toddler area. Our favorite part of the large park was the waterslides. Even Michael was allowed to go down them on one of our laps in the innertube. He shrieked with pleasure even the first time down. One of Christopher’s favorite activities was the river. The water carried us along on our inner tubes and dumped us out into the wave pool. At the end of the day Daddy braved the surfing pool and did better than 99.9% of the others in line!
JWD Breaking Free: Cowabunga
JWD Whoos Halloween
JWD Merry Days Sixth
JWD Picknics Summerish Word Stickers
JWD Picknics Charmed Flowers
Shalae Tippetts Dynamic Brush Set Decorative Stitching 4901
LD Fine Print 17 font

Week 22: SB someone you admire. I'd been thinking about SBing a page about Obama anyway, so that was good timing.
JWD Double Negative
JWD Complete Boy 01 circle/star rubon
JWD Project 52 Dated Stamp Circles
Official Presidential portrait
Brandy Hackman Sassy's Stardust & Cinnamon paper
Brandie Valenzuela Grungelle Brush Set
Anita Stergiou Inauguration alpha
Ck Road Trip font

The background paper swirls and stars continued over Obama's face so I used the clone stamp to edit them out.

Week 21 Jen Wilson: SB a hybrid project. Since I'm not as in to paper crafts as SBing I chose to do a layout. The papers up top are "real", the rest is digital. I cut a slit in the sides of the photo to thread them through. The funny part, which I did on purpose, is that the paper and digital papers are by the same artist (Jen Wilson).
JWD The Halloween Holiday Collection paper
Syndee Nuckles Hocus Pocus brush set
Miss Mint Witches Brew
Fonts: CK Scratchy Box & PC Halloween
My Mind's Eye Night Light Line (Jen Wilson)-paper product (2 strips of paper at top)
Basic Grey bat rub-on
Journaling: by hand

Jen Wilson week 20 (SB pictures from the past week)
Apparently our 4 month old not only thrives on attention but is a regular lady's man;) Jeff and Dan were the only men...5 moms, 4 teenage girls, at least a couple pre-teen girls, and several younger boys...all clamoring to hold William and play with him:) And he ws extra super squealy and smily. At the end of the evening he was sacked out on Sydney’s lap with his four limbs hanging down at her sides. Dan & Amy provided and/or prepared a spread fit for kings...grilled fare galore: meat, tofu, asparagus, chimichurri sauce, sangria, and rhubarb crisp. We left hours later still stuffed to the gills.
JWD Caring background paper
JWD April Rieff Project 52 Monday Daily template
JWD Beginnings: Flourished Memo Starter