Sunday, January 30, 2011

Ride, Dana, Ride

(photo lifted from my Cousin Karen's Blog)
Life....

I just read that my older cousin Dana died yesterday.  So sad to hear this.  He leaves behind a legacy of great memories in my mind.  He was that 'cool' older cousin who had an air of  'James Dean' mixed with some sixties rock around him.  

He had an aura.

He lived.

I love this photo of him.  Thanks Karen for posting it.

Ride, Dana.  Ride.  Give my dad a hug when you see him...

A Recap of 1-1-11 - Sami's 13th Birthday Slumber Party

First: Making Pizzas!  We had three..

Jake added his cheese expertise!  The only 'boy' at an all girl party

First Round of the Monopoly Wars

Dinner!  Included Pink Lemonade

Our Creations - One Cheese (not shown), One Super Combo (YUM) and a Pepperoni

Notice the Banner?  Sami made it! 

THE Cake!  Ice-Cream Cheesecake with Brownie Crust. Sami did the chocolate decor

Inferno?

Happy 13th Gorgeous Girl!!!!

The Mani's and Pedi's Begin!!! 

Each girl got her own manicure set (seen in the bottom of the photo)

Special Birthday Girl Treatment!!!!

Mani's

Pedi's

The Slumberers.... Sunday Morning

At the End of the Party - Darn that Monopoly Game!  It's OUT again (and was played until 1:30 pm)

Treats for the Girls

Manicure Station

Sami's Loot - They LOVE anything Hollister! 

And, later that week.. on her 'real' day - Her Daddy made special sour dough pancakes at her request - she asked for a heart, and '13'.  She had Mickey Mouse too! He's over there, on the left (parts)

The Invites

 *******************

So.. I am just now sharing photos from Sami's 13th birthday... It was a GREAT event for a very special girl.  Crossing over from preteen to teen is huge! And we sent her out in style:)

(Note: These are mostly my notes so I don't forget the highlights when I make a layout later!)...

I was 'a bit worried' about five teens all together for an over-nighter.  This group is from three different schools - only three of them are together at the same school so we had some 'get to know you' awkwardness. They did great!  No weirdness, no one was excluded, and they all got along beautifully.  Phew!  This was a good number to have! 

The biggest 'hurdle' was dealing with cell phones.  One girl started texting within five minutes of being dropped off.  I asked her to put her phone away.  I had this conversation with three of them - and explained why to the whole group - that it is not fair to the girls in the room (it's like whispering), and that it's not fair to the person not in the room (feeling left out).  I did say they could use the phones to call their parents.  They did good on honoring the request. 

Pizzas were a hit!  MAN!  The tastiest pizzas I might add!  Love making the crust from scratch - yeasty goodness - which has to rise for 45 minutes, but so worth it.  The girls that arrived on time got to help chop onions and cook the sauce.  And, they were the 'shy' girls, so it kept them busy.  We were all in tears from those darn onions!  And everyone helped make their favorite pizza.  Dick made the combo one.  Super yummy!

Jake got lots of attention.  When it looked like he was 'a disruption' to the 'girl time'  I sent him to his room.  It wasn't anything he was doing deliberately. He's just a cute charming boy!  And he was becoming the center of attention, instead of the birthday girl, so off he went.  He was OK with that.  He has a TV in his room and his own world.  Dick and Jake were supposed to go 'out' and have some guy time - but, for some reason Dick decided they were going to stay home instead. 

The manicures and pedicures were fun!  And Monopoly?  I am NOT a Monopoly player!  The TV never go turned on.  No movies or shows.  (The move I had picked out was not a good choice!)...   Again, they played well together.   When there were disagreements they did it gracefully and in fun.  Monopoly for two days?  Crazy...

Sami's cake turned out wonderfully - although the brownie crust was hard as rock! It was her special request, and I made it the day before.  It had to be in the freezer over night.  Cutting through it was a challenge, and talk about rich!  Lordy...  It was GONE that night!  Those girls all had good appetites.  Let me tell you.. girls that eat food instead of pick at it are #1 in my book!  We had one girl doing the 'I'm not hungry thing' until she saw the others dive right in.  She picked up the pace, and even had seconds...

I slept upstairs so I could 'keep an ear and eye' alert for any problems.  They did good.  They had some great silly pre-sleeping time.  The mounts on the walls all ended up with names, and apparently there was a good story made about them as well.  One girl for some reason was standing up in her sleeping bag - head covered, and fell - no injuries - and she was closest to the rock woodstove area.  VERY lucky! 

Things that did not go well:
The parents were to come get their girls at 10am on Sunday... Single dads were late.  One didn't show until 11:30pm.  The other?  1:30pm!  What the heck?  I really don't understand this.  The girls called them to remind them. Several times for the last one.  The Monopoly game just kept going!  I was pooped..

A party on 1-1-11.  This was the only day Sami did not have a Basketball Game... The party did not start until 5pm.. But having a party the day after New Years Eve? Brutal!  The kids and I stayed up until 1am the nght before, I did not drink, but boy, was I tired!  We still had MOST of the Christmas Decor up (tree included) and I had to convert the house from Christmas to a girly party...That was the hardest part..  Cleaning up and turning around and decorating for another event.  Record Time getting all that done! 

The Best Part?  Quote from Sami:  'Mom, I had the BEST time with my friends!'... So worth it:) 

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Completed Project 12 - 2010 Album!

Close Up of the Front Cover of the Album (colors are not true, sorry!) created with cricut, and MME goodies. And, yeah, that's my shadow.  I was too lazy to take the protective cover off!
My 2010 Competed Project 12 Album


The Inside Title Page (Created with my Cricut, MME papers/embellies, and a Hero Arts Owl that Sami colored!)
All the lovely pages in their page protectors!  Each Month is done!
Left Side of September (completed yesterday)  - I used my Cricut and this page Feature's Jake's 24 Mile Bike Ride, and the Donor List for when he raised $200! (supplies: MME, Stampin Up cardstock).  Sorry for the 'shot' in the album.  Lazy.

Right Side of September - Hybrid, with MME goods and Kathy Z. template (I shared this some months ago!)

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It's a wrap!  My Project 12 album is done - complete with cover and title page and each and every month is now safely guarded in page protectors! The album is made by Pioneer.  I like the 3 rings! 

I finished 'September' yesterday.  I shared quite some time ago, the right side page, which did not follow the monthly sketch, and when I put it in the album, it needed to be balanced with a left side.  I wanted to share the donor list Jake had for the ride, so I recreated it in word, and printed it on one of the MME papers and then made the left page that you see.  Yippee!  And notice that I used my cricut???? Yes!  Yesterday and Today I got some play time with that beautiful baby!!! 

Well, friends... this concludes the 2010 Project 12 album!  It was so much fun to do, and I have to say, it is one of my favorite albums yet (Disclaimer: My Grandma Marina's Cookbook will always be #1)! 

Up Next?  2011, of course!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Some Happy Things! Adventures and Inspiration!

So..my personal life has been a bit 'of a roller coaster' this month!  I will say, it's amazing how things can just change in the blink of an eye!  This New Year, 2011 is definitely going to be one filled with new adventures.

New outlook on life, new goals, new directions, new vision...new lease on life...

I spoke with a friend yesterday, who was in my wedding and I in hers... Love friends like that.. ones you have  known for a lifetime, and she shared with me an amazing way to look at these new adventures.. As opportunities.  As gifts.  That there are reasons for things happening, and reasons that some other doors are opening up for me.. OH my gosh.. A beautiful door is on the horizon but I can not share it with you right now!  I don't want to jinx it!!!!!  Very very happy about this...each time I peak through the door I see more beautiful goodies!!! 

And, I do believe my 2011 One Little Word 'Thrive' is in the middle of it... Yes.. Indeed...



So, before I run off to Sami's basketball games for the day (yes, games.. She is on the middle school A team, and the B team!) I thought I would link you up to some very happy inspirational sites I found in today's blog reader:

Moxie Fab - Loving the Pinks and Grays!
Kim Hughes - Awesome Mexico Sights!  I want to go here for my 50th!!! But in the winter...
Lisa - Side Oats and Scribbles Beautiful Shot Capturing Love!  Check out her sox and jammie pants! 

And, the sun is out today!  THANK GOD!!!! 

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

December 2010 Project 12 Layout

Becky Fleck Sketch for 2010 P12 - December

Close Up - Fun Embellies:  Basic Grey Eskimo Kisses rubons, MME Holly Jolly Brad, and Martha Stewart Twine!

Close Up #2: More Basic Grey Rubons!  I love houses!!!

Close Up #3: MME Holly Jolly chipboard trims

My Layout: Photo Heavy!!!! (Click on photo to enlarge and see photos!)

Hello favorite peeps...  I am finally sharing with you my December P12 layout!  It's been sitting on my crafty desk for weeks.. I even had to dust it to take the photos! 

Most of the goods you see on this are Basic Grey (Eskimo Kisses) and My Minds Eye (Holly Jolly).  My gosh these two lines are wonderful together! 

Photo run down from top left and traveling clockwise:
1. Jake practicing guitar for Christmas Eve's song night
2. The first Monopoly Game of the 'war' - Christmas Eve
3. Christmas Eve snacks:  LOVE the Harry and David Pears and apples that I bought for US! We also had home made egg nog, tasty cheeses, tasty cookies, etc.
4.  Jake Christmas morning with his 'throwing knives'.  They were on his list and his dad got them.  Joy.
5.  Sami opening her cute white coat that I got her!  Christmas Morning
6. Sami's Snowman with his itty bitty arms, milk bottle top nose.
7. Christmas Morning - Opening Auntie Paula's presents!
8. Letters to Santa, cookies, milk
9. Outdoor scene:  Our kitty MOUSE by the decor at the front of the drive
10. Our tree (the kids hated this little tree I brought home - it's my size and our ceilings are 20' tall, but heck, if I'm the only one getting the tree, then it's gonna be my size!  It looks wonderful)
11. Sami playing with the bears she decorated the window sills with
12. Our wrapping station - everyone grabs their own supplies and goes to wrap
13.  Sami on Christmas Eve playing the keyboard - on top of the useless piano
14. Downtown Baker

And, the journaling

December, 2010
      Regardless of the snow storms,  the ice fog, the below zero frigid temperatures, or even the nasty icy roads and hours spent on the interstate, the days leading up to Christmas seemed a bit warmer and happier than any other winter month! 
      Sami once again helped decorate the house. She took charge of the stockings and she even setup little bear towns in the window sills.  Adorable!  
      Christmas Eve was my favorite night of all. Our tradition includes singing Christmas songs and having a ‘spread of tasty snacks.  Harry & David pears did the trick along with homemade eggnog. Afterward?  Monopoly.  The game continued into the next day and Christmas night! 
     The kids wrote sweet letters to Santa.  Even though they have crossed the threshold of believing in the man himself, the magic of Christmas lives on in both of them.   The next day? After waiting ‘forever’ for Dick to be done feeding the cows and sheep, Jake got his throwing knives, and Sami got her African Dwarf Frogs.  To quote Jake, ‘this was a GREAT Christmas!
    
And, that wraps up 2010 for Project 12!
Thanks for stopping by....

Sunday, January 9, 2011

January 9th - A Sunday Share

It's a beautiful Sunday morning.  A typical winter day.  Clouds are sitting on the Eastern mountains - soon to bring the snowstorm that has been forecasted for the past three days.  And the sun is peeking through above the clouds on the Eastern mountain side (we are in a valley).  The sheep and llama in the field in front of my picture window are all calm  - well, except for the big white guard dog that loped across my view as he is chasing the feed truck!

My family members are all out doing chores and I am just enjoying my morning coffee and blog surfing.

This Sunday, for the moment, my mind is 'at rest' - it was in turmoil the last couple days (tossing and turning) about some personal life issues which I am not ready to address.  These things could be life changing.  I just don't know if I have the strength to follow through with 'what is right for me' vs. 'what is right for the common good' etc. etc. etc.  And I ask myself 'what is truly the right thing to do'?  That sort of stuff.

However, I found a beautiful post today over at the Moxie Fab World.. As I ponder the message, it is actually giving me a new perspective on how to approach anything I say, or do regarding 'the events', with Grace. 

And that is my goal throughout the walk I am currently on.

To handle it with Grace. And to be true to my 2011 word 'Thrive'.


Peace my friends. 

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Welcome 2011! My Resolutions for the New Year

Happy New Year!  We woke to MINUS 10 degrees!  Cold!  But the sun is out and it is so beautiful!  A GREAT way to start 2011!  And, the kids and I stayed up to Midnight!  Yahoo!  We did it!!!!!!

Resolutions?

Why, yes!  I do make resolutions!

 Here's my philosophy on resolutions, goals, and dreams:

I am a list maker.  I set goals. I am a big dreamer!  And, it doesn't bother me if I don't reach the finish line, just as long as I am working toward the goal, I feel I have made progress!  As in, some work is better than no work.

Last Year's Big resolution was to stick to a year long scrapbook related challenge.  Project12 - sponsored by Scrapbook & Cards Today - with sketches made by Becky Fleck, and hosted by Davinie.  Guess What?  I did it!  I have one layout to go (December) and I need to finish my September, and poof!  I am done and I have a beautiful Album finished! Yahoo!!!!  Accomplishment.  Finished. 

So.. This Year?   I have a list (of course!).

2011 Resolutions/Goals/Dreams:
  1.  I am doing Project12 Again.  Love it so much!  I might focus on a 'theme' for the year.  Thinking on that. I found myself deciding between ranch life photos, vs about the kids, vs highlights vs me.  All could have their own album but who the heck has the time???? Hmm.. maybe one photo of each category?  Let me know your thoughts!
  2.  I also signed up for Ali Edward's Class - One Little Word.  The word I picked is 'Thrive'.  (more on that later - why I picked the word, etc.).
  3. I am a 'lover' of calendars/datebooks/list making opportunities.  But, I struggle with finding the perfect  'one size fits all'.  I even had an electronic fancy thing (PDA - that I tried syncing with my desktop) that truthfully, drove me crazy!  I like to write.  I like paper.  So, sometime in late 2010, via Ali Edwards Blog, I signed up for the Log Your Memory Log Book. I purchased the hard copy - split into 2 books.  I am not using this for my daily calendar but for my 'memory calendar'.  ** Note:  Edited on 1/4/11 to say:  I had my light bulb moment last night!  I am getting regular emails from LYM, and am now registered on their website, and my gosh!  There is ALOT that goes with this purchase - some real nice exclusive 'members only' goodies for those that purchase the log book! I am now a happy camper!***  I love the themes, prompts, and 'extras' that are tied to scrapbooking.  I might get the online version instead so I can 'tweek it' to fit my snobby needs.   After I discovered it did not fit my appointment needs, I bought a very nice, glossy,  Mary Englebright Datebook, for my 'calendar' and I will use the LogBook for 'memory stuff'.  (So far, so good!) 
  4. And... Lifestyle Changes.  I have a second One Little Word.  But, it should be my Big Word.  And that is MOVE.    I am going to be 49 this year, and I really am not 'the girl' I used to be!  Before I married (and these changes were all my doing, not blaming my husband) I used to bike, run, swim and 'get out and play' more.  I moved this body!  So... before I turn 49 I want to have established a 3x a week moving routine.  The deadline on that?  May 12!
So.. There you have it!  My 2011 resolutions!  And I put them here, in print, so I can come back to them, and to be accountable...

Happy New Year!  I gotta 'move' and clean the house and get ready for the  1-1-11 party girl birthday!