Monday, June 30, 2008

Projects from Circle Journal get-together

Here are a few of the projects we made in California: the book in the top left corner is a hand-bound book that Patti taught us...we made it from the cover of an old book, covered it and bound new sets of pages for the inside. The calendar was taught by Rocio - and we learned how to use the Bind-It-All, which was a very cool tool that I may have to add to this year's Christmas list :) The project in front was taught by Patty - it's an office binder made into a mini album...inside are some extra pages, and it was made sturdy with some covered chipboard. A great idea for a vacation album or other mini-album. How creative are these ladies?!

Friday, June 27, 2008

Days 4 and 5

On day 4 (Sunday) some of the ladies left the beach house, and the rest of us went to the Red House Cafe in Pacific Grove. We all had a delicious lunch and Debbie let me try her crab cake which I had never tasted before - it was really tasty! After lunch we went to Monterey for a walk around the shops there; I picked up some nice trinkets to bring home :) Afterwards we headed back to the beach house and had dinner there, followed by a nice soak in the hot tub.

Monday morning rolled around and we cleaned up the house before heading back inland for our last day. We picked up lunch at Gayle's Deli in Santa Cruz, and MJ generously offered to have Patti, Sue and me stay the night at her house in Los Gatos, and she also wanted to show us how to make lavender wands with lavender from her garden. It was lots of fun learning a new craft! The photo on the left is some of the lavender MJ's husband picked from their garden, and on the right is Patti working hard on her lavender wand :)

I'll be back tomorrow with photos of some of our completed projects!

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Days 2 and 3: shopping and learning :)

Here's where we stayed for most of the trip. A beautiful beach house courtesy of MJ and her husband. It had enough room for all 10 of us and MJ cooked us some great meals too!

On Friday we left San Francisco early and 6 of us headed out for a day of shopping. I think we covered 9 stores between Berkeley and San Jose! A marathon shopping day! By Saturday morning the whole group had arrived and we settled in for a busy day of classes including a calendar by Rocio, a book by Patti, pendants and magnets by Lisa, a mini album by Patty, a decorated box by MJ and 3 cards by me. Can you imagine fitting all that (and beach breaks) into one day? FUN!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Day 1: Sailing

On the first day some of us were lucky enough to go sailing in the San Francisco Bay. Lisa's friend Libbie was kind enough to take us out and show us the sights. It was a beautiful day - hot by San Francisco standards! Of course I got sunburned a little :) We saw some fantastic views of the city!

I'm back!

I got home last night from my CA trip. It was soooo much fun! I am very lucky to be part of such an amazing group of ladies; when we met in person it was as if we had known each other forever! Some of us have been in a circle journal group for over 3 years, so we know a lot about each other's families, jobs, etc. We spent one of the days teaching classes to each other, which was tons of fun :) The beach house was absolutely beautiful; words can't describe the scenery there. Sue and I slept with our windows wide open every night so that we could listen to the ocean :)

I'm going to download the photos from my camera this morning, so I'll post a few later with some more details about the trip. It's great to be home!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Leaving on a jet plane :)

Tomorrow morning I leave for my California break! Although with all the activities that are planned, I may need a vacation after this vacation :) Today I got caught up with the laundry, finished up my card kits (last minute, I know), and went swimming with Nattie and Jamie. Tonight all that's left is to print some photos to take with me, pack my case, and get ready to go! I can't wait to meet all these amazing women...I am sure I will have some great stories to tell when I get back :)
Have a terrific week! I'll be back blogging next Wednesday.
Oh, and since I won't be here for the next TCP Tuesday Color Challenge, Leigh will be covering it for me. Thanks Leigh! Have fun!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

TCP Tuesday!

It's that day again - TCP Tuesday! Get out your TCP stamps and play along with your Hipster Hostess for this week - Carole! She's got a great Inspiration Challenge for you :)

Monday, June 16, 2008

3 days to go!

And then I'll be heading to California for 5 days of fun with my Seasoned CJ Survivors friends! Yeah! I even got an itinerary in the mail today from Patty and Kristi...the Bay Area ladies have got everything planned for us from the minute we step off the plane through till our flights home! Those are my kind of gals!

One of the highlights will be our shopping day on Friday: we'll be covering scrapbooking and papercrafting stores from Berkeley all the way down to San Jose from morning till night! We'd better wear comfy shoes that day!

Today's card is made with a Whipper Snapper image - how sweet is that chicken? (Well, at least I think it's a chicken! LOL!)

Sunday, June 15, 2008

My Dad

This Father's Day, I thought I'd share a little about my Dad :)

My Dad's name was Richard James Marsh. He was born in England in 1948 to his parents (my grandparents) Percy and Edith Marsh. Percy had his own building business. From what I've heard, Dad was a pretty typical little boy; we have a fun photo of him taken when he was about 6 and he's holding a toad :) Dad went to Salford University in Manchester and got a BSc in Electrical Engineering. He married my mum in August 1970 and I came along in December 1971. We were still living in England at that time, but moved up to Scotland in 1977 when I was 5 and my sister was 2.

Dad pushed me pretty hard academically - sometimes way too hard, but I believe he meant well. We had our issues, that's for sure - but today's not the day to get into those. The fact that we had problems at times doesn't mean I don't miss him, though - he died in September 1989 from stomach cancer - he was only 41 years old. A lot has happened in my life since I was 17 that I know he would have been very proud of - in particular, me marrying Iain and us having our 2 great kiddos.

If your Dad is still around, be sure and give him a big hug or special phone call today.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Friday afternoon visitor :)

This big guy came by this afternoon while I was working on my paper for school...he just wandered up the driveway, hung out in the front yard, ate some grass and weeds, and wandered off into the trees :)

And, you were right, "Kung Fu Panda" wasn't nearly as bad as I thought it was going to be :) The kids both really liked it; Jamie was engrossed the whole time with all the kung fu action going on. Afterwards we did some shopping for the goodie bag swap we're doing in CA next week, did a quick stop at Barnes and Noble, and headed home.

What are your weekend plans? Iain gets back from Brazil tomorrow morning (it's been a long week!). Nattie is going to a day-long babysitting class in Evergreen, and I have a haircut appointment later in the afternoon. So it'll be a "mixed bag" kind of day. Have a great one, whatever you're up to!

Check out this little guy :)

I love this stamp image!! He's from one of Penny Black's new lines - and what a great one for coloring :) I also got the giraffe and the elephant...all very sweet and handy for everyday cards!
Some of my blog friends asked about the scalloped punches. The scalloped circles and ovals on the last few cards were made with the Nestabilities templates that I use with the Cuttlebug die cut machine. I also have some of the scalloped punches from Marvy: my favorites are the Mega and Giga sizes (pink and purple punches); I have them in circles and ovals and they also fit together perfectly.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Lots to do!

One week from today I'll be leaving for California! Yeah! I really need to get busy actually doing the things on my "to do" list :) My list includes:

  • finish getting supplies ready for card class in CA
  • PowerPoint presentation and 2 written assignments for school
  • haircut
  • going to the gym every day

And of course, keeping busy with the kids. We had a terrific time at the museum yesterday. One of the wildlife exhibits was all about animals found here in Colorado and there was a button to press to hear the cry of the mountain lion. The sound was very familiar to us throughout last summer; so far we've only heard it a couple of times this year. The gems and minerals exhibit was amazing too! We will definitely be going back before summer's end.

Tomorrow we're going to see "Kung Fu Panda". Can you sense the enthusiasm in my writing? LOL!! We also have to do some shopping for Father's Day this weekend.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008


This stamp is one of the brand new images from "My Favorite Things Presents". MFT will be showcasing the work of other illustrators, and Annie LaPoint's images are absolutely beautiful. Check them out here.
For this card I used paper from My Mind's Eye (29th Street collection) and one of my Cuttlebug embossing folders.
Have a terrific Wednesday! The kids and I are off to the Denver Museum of Nature and Science - should be fun!!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

This one's just for us!

Benita and me!

It's TCP Tuesday!

Yep, it's that day of the week again - TCP Tuesday! Your Hipster Hostess this week is Leigh - so hop over to her blog right here and check out this week's sketch - you'll love it! My card was made with TCP stamps ("Golfer" and "Happy Daddy's Day", and patterned paper by Basic Grey ("Boxer" collection). Don't forget - every month Alma picks the Swanky Stamper of the Month from the TCP Tuesday entries - so get busy!

Saturday, June 07, 2008

My 3

Here they are :) Nattie, Iain and Jamie being goofy yesterday in front of the camera. I had to take some photos of Iain for a presentation he's giving at work, and the kiddos wanted their picture taken too :)

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Birds of a Feather

Here's another ATC for a "Birds of a Feather" swap I'm in. These stamps are by Penny Black. I love the expressions on the birds' faces! Patterned paper is by Bo Bunny.

We took Sally to the vet this afternoon and he showed us how to measure the insulin and give her the shots. He said it'll be just a week or so before she starts to feel better, less thirsty, etc.

It's been raining on and off here for most of the day today. I met my trainer at the gym for an hour this morning and got my butt kicked :) In a good way, though, right? I'm down 7lbs now, so 10lbs is my next mini-milestone. Then I'm going to reward myself! Any suggestions on what my reward should be?

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Congrats All Around!

Here's a layout made with one of the new stamp sets being released tonight by My Favorite Things. This set is called "Congrats All Around", and what's neat about it is that the flower images shown here (and one other image) can all be cut out using the Marvy scalloped circle punches! Anything that saves time and looks pretty is a wonderful thing in my book! LOL!

The photo is from Nattie's first day of 5th grade (August 2007). This past Friday she finished elementary school and will be starting 6th grade at middle school this August - how old does that make me feel??? Yikes!

An ATC :) And big news from My Favorite Things!

I have an ATC for you today :) As Linda put it, "my name is Toni and I'm an ATC addict"! LOL!

The one on the left is for a swap that the DT members for My Favorite Things are doing. There is soooo much talent on that team; I can't wait to see the ATCs that come back! Each of us is using a different set - and I picked my favorite set, "Hot Stuff". The patterned paper is from the "Archaic" collection by Basic Grey; I love how the wavy lines on the patterned paper mimic the steam coming from the coffee (or tea) cup!

And My Favorite Things has big news today! Firstly, today is the release day for the June stamps - and you are going to be blown away by how great these latest images are. There is a new feature called "My Favorite Things Presents..." where MFT is working with new illustrators to bring out some slightly different images that still keep MFT's stamps "fresh, fun, and completely distinctive"! You can read all about it (and see the new images) on Kim's blog right here...

The other new releases from MFT this month are awesome! There's a MINI set called "What's Up, Cupcake?", and larger sets called "Here's the Scoop" (ice cream, anyone?) and "Congrats All Around" (this one works with the scalloped circle punches!). The big release party is tonight on the MFT forum at Splitcoast Stampers. There will be games, challenges and lots of fun with Kim and the DT right here tonight from 9pm - 11pm EST. Stop by if you can!!

Oh, and one more thing :) I'm going to be working on...wait for it...scrapbook layouts for MFT! Yeah! I'm hoping to be able to showcase the versatility of MFT stamps and demonstrate that they can be used for layouts as well as cards! Wooo hoooo! Check back later today for a layout!

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

TCP Tuesday - Stamp Challenge

Your hostess this week is Katie....hop over to her blog right here and see what she's got going on :) I made my card on the right using stamps from The Cat's Pajamas (of course!) - and the cool thing is that these stamps come individually mounted on rubber or as part of a Clearly Swanky set! Enjoy!

Monday, June 02, 2008

Sally cat

So, the vet called this evening to tell me that the bloodwork showed that Sally is diabetic. I had prepared myself for the worst news, so hearing this diagnosis was somewhat of a relief. It means we will have to give her 2 shots a day for the rest of her life, but we can handle that. What's a little shot among family, right? Thank you for all your well wishes for Sally :) They mean a lot, as always!

Something that's NOT a card...

That's what I challenged the DT gals for Queen Kat Designs to come up with for our next blog challenge :) I am using a tag that I made for the upcoming release of QK's "Grunge" stamp!
Check out the other non-cards by Juliet, Tanis, and Penny!

Sunday, June 01, 2008

In less than 3 weeks...

I'll be in Carmel, California! And what's even more exciting is that I'm going to meet a terrific group of ladies there!

I've been participating in circle journal groups for several years, and some of these ladies and I have known each other since our very first circle (and very first encounters with flakers who held on to albums, lost them, etc., etc.). As the years have passed, we have had more awesome ladies join our group, and we now appropriately call ourselves "The Seasoned CJ Survivors". We have supported each other through good times and bad, and I am proud to call each and every one of these ladies my friend :) Some of them do have blogs: Patti, Rocio, Sue, Lisa and Debbie.

We have been saying for a while now that we need to all get together and finally meet in person - and this month it's happening! Lisa's friend has very graciously offered us the use of her house (on the beach!) for the week, and we're all getting together for a fun-filled time! There will be 10 of us! In addition to some day trips we have planned, we're going to spend one of the days teaching classes at the house...each of us will teach something to the other ladies - how fun is that?! So I have my lists started - what I need for the classes, what I need to pack....

I have a feeling I'll need a vacation after this vacation - and I can't wait!! :)