Saturday, August 30, 2008

This is what greeted me this morning...

I got up at 7 to go to the gym, and these two guys were hanging out in the yard :) I hope they enjoyed their breakfast!
Doing some creating today, finishing up some DT work for The Cat's Pajamas' next release (yep! there's another one!). And then I have to do some school work - not quite as much fun :)
Have a great weekend!!

Thursday, August 28, 2008

One day to go...

until you can get some of the new Birthday stamps (clear and rubber) from The Cat's Pajamas! Here's another card from those very stamps :) I love Poochie, and here he is with a birthday cake! The patterned paper is from Die Cuts With A View's Halloween Stack.
Happy stamp shopping!! :)

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

We have a winner!!

I got the number from and here's what it came up with:

Here are your random numbers: 34
Timestamp: 2008-08-27 22:13:12 UTC

This means that the blog candy winner is RACHEL!! Congratulations, Rachel! I've emailed you separately :)

Thank you to everyone who entered - and be sure to stop by The Cat's Pajamas website on Friday to pick up the new goodies! Here's another peek for you :)

Another TCP Peek :)

Thank you to everyone who has entered for the blog candy! I will be drawing a winner this evening :) Today's card is, of course, another card made with one of the upcoming new sets from TCP...
Patterned paper: "Cupcake" collection by Basic Grey; Pin embellishment by Heidi Grace; Star brads by Making Memories; Stitching rub-ons by Die Cuts with a View; Copic markers; Nestabilities dies.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

It's TCP Tuesday!

I hope you can play along with us this week! Our Hipster Hostess is Katie - and the stamp we're using for this challenge is called "Animal Train" :) How sweet is this image?? And don't forget those entries for the blog candy this week...I did notice that Karrie's offering the same set as I am, so jump over and enter there too! Good luck :)

Monday, August 25, 2008

First day of school photos

Here are photos of Nattie and Jamie on the first day of school last week :) So far all is going well with them; Nattie is settling in better with the middle school routine, and really likes all her teachers. Jamie is enjoying his new class and new teacher. I get to see him at lunch recess every day when I'm working at the school, and I always get a hug from him...I know that in a couple of years' time he won't want to do that in public as much :) so I'm enjoying the hugs while I can!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Look what I have in my hot little hands...

Yep!! A set of stamps to give away as BLOG CANDY to a lucky stamping fan!! You still have time to enter Katie's drawing, and I believe Leigh, Ana, Karrie and Tracy will also have some goodies to give away throughout the week before the big release on Friday :)
Since the stamps being released are birthday stamps, I'll stick to the birthday theme. To enter for the blog candy, leave a comment before 4pm MST on WEDNESDAY to this post telling us what special birthday traditions your family has :) I'll be randomly picking a winner on Wednesday evening. Good luck everyone!!

Thank You, Janet!!

One of my favorite blogging friends Janet made my day yesterday when I saw that she chose me for this blog award "to send love and acknowledgement to women who brighten your day, teach you new things and live their lives fully with generosity and joy". Thank you so much, Janet! This means a lot!
This award can be passed on to 1 person or 100, it's completely open. I'd like to pass it on to Jill. Check out Jill's blog - you will always find something creative, inspirational and uplifting. Thank you, Jill, for your positive outlook and amazing talent in so many areas of life!!

Saturday, August 23, 2008


A little bird told me that Katie is giving away the first of several pieces of blog candy, courtesy of Alma at The Cat's Pajamas!! Hop over to Katie's blog and get your entry in!! The rest of us DT gals will have candy throughout the week, so stay tuned for your chance to win one of the super new sets being released on Friday! Yeah!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

8 days until new TCP birthday stamps....

And here's another sneak peek!! :) Yep - the penguins are back!! These 2 sets (yes, 2!) are going to be must-haves for your collection :)

What's the story?

Here's a new Flopsey image from My Favorite Things - how cute is the bunny reading a book? :) I used up some scraps of patterned paper and paper pieced Flopsey.
So today was my 4th day at work. I'm getting into a regular schedule slowly but surely. I start with 2 hours in kindergarten. The little kids are a great group and some couldn't remember (or pronounce) my name, so those few call me "Mrs. Teacher" :) The kindergarten teacher and I have a table each and the kids rotate from table to table to get their "work" done. After kindergarten recess I go along to 5th grade and perhaps grade some papers or help get a lesson ready, then it's time for 1st grade recess supervision (which is cool because Jamie comes and gives me a huge hug in the playground!). After that I'm with 5th grade for the rest of the time - helping in class, and then I keep an eye on them during recess and lunch before heading home early afternoon.
My time management skills are going to have to be in top form, particularly when I'm doing a school class (as I am now), which can take up a couple of hours a day. I also have to keep up my gym routine, DT work and the wife/mom stuff. I'll get there!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Thinking Halloween...

I remember last year it seemed like 5 minutes after the kids started school, it was suddenly Halloween! These cards were made with a new set called "Monster Squad" by Stephanie Fizer for My Favorite Things. The images are large - and perfect for paper piecing or coloring :) The paper I used on the spooky house card is by Cosmo Cricket, and the trick or treat card is made with paper by 7 gypsies. Look how cute those kiddos are - all dressed up!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

TCP Tuesday - Color Challenge!

Hi everyone! I'm the Hipster Hostess this week for The Cat's Pajamas' Challenge. This week it's time for a color challenge - and your color combo to have fun with is - BLUE and ORANGE.

My card was made with - one of the new sets being released in just 10 days! Yeah! ENJOY!

If you play along, please post a link to your card as a comment to this post. Then I can scoop up all that creativity for Alma's Holey Moley Monday slideshow :) If you're posting on Splitcoast Stampers, be sure to use the keyword TCPTUES21 so that we can find your fabulous work!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Monday musings

So, both kiddos are officially back in school now. Nattie did well getting herself organized this morning; she and Iain went out to the bus stop together. Then, almost 2 hours later it was Jamie's turn. After Jamie left, Iain and I went out for breakfast together (a tradition for us on "back to school day") before I went for my first full day working at the school.
Everything went really well! It turns out I get to supervise the 1st grade recess, so I got to watch Jamie playing with his friends :) The rest of my time was spent with 5th grade - in the classroom, and then taking the kiddos to lunch and recess. On my way out, I met the principal and she asked me if I'd be interested in also being the aide for the morning kindergarten now I'll be working 9.30am - 1.30pm every day, with a mix of kindergarteners, 1st graders and 5th graders! I will take my gym clothes with me and go to the gym on the way home...and my degree work will fit in around all that. Phew!
Today's photo is one I took this weekend of one of our cats, Sally. This is the one who was diagnosed with diabetes several months ago. She gets insulin shots twice a day now and is doing really well! Yeah!
Come back and visit tomorrow for TCP Tuesday! I'll be hosting the Color Challenge this week :)

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Nature Calls...

Here's a layout and a card made with some of this month's releases from My Favorite Things. I know my friend Sue will love the images in these sets. The two sets used in these pieces are called "Nature Calls" and "What's Your Sign?". The patterned and embossed papers are by KI Memories ("Forrest" collection), and I colored the images with colored pencils, then blended with Gamsol (odorless mineral spirits).

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Time for another sneak peek :)

Here's another card made with upcoming new stamps from The Cat's Pajamas. I think Alma has really outdone herself this time with the designs; all of the DT members have been raving about the latest sets - which will be available on July 29th :) Don't forget to keep an eye on the other DT gals' blogs for other sneak peeks!!

A great day :)

We were all up bright and early on Friday so that Nattie could catch the bus at 6.25am (yikes! that is so early for kiddos to be up every day!). We could see she was nervous, but she did a great job keeping it together. Only the 6th graders were at school for that first day, so they were able to get another tour of the school, figure out their lockers, etc. They were split into groups of 10 and were accompanied by 8th graders for the whole day. When Nattie got home she was excited to tell us all about her day - which is a great sign :) On Monday all the kids go back to school, but it'll still be a pretty easy day for the 6th graders since they spend the whole day in their homeroom. But on Tuesday the full schedule starts, with the kids moving around classes throughout the day. We are really proud of how her first day at middle school went!

And I had a great day too :) I spent 2 hours working with the 5th grade teachers, getting supplies ready for the first day back. They really are an awesome team; I could tell that they are all very enthusiastic and that the kiddos in their classes are going to have a terrific year ahead. I also had lunch with all the other paraprofessionals and the principal. Everyone was so welcoming and happy to help; I think I am going to really enjoy the position. After lunch I went through a brief orientation, was given my key, whistle and other supplies for keeping the kiddos safe on the playground. Monday will be my first day with the kids :)

What are your weekend plans? We're having our neighbors round tonight for drinks and appetizers; so far we've had a lot of RSVPs so it looks like it'll be a full house! On that note, I'd better go and get busy cleaning and prepping food - enjoy the rest of your weekend, whatever you're up to!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Big day tomorrow!

Nattie will be starting 6th grade at a new school - middle school - tomorrow. She is nervous but excited; she spent the whole day relaxing today, making the most of her last day of summer break.

And tomorrow will be my first day at my new job! I went to orientation on Monday and got all the HR paperwork done; tomorrow I'll be working with the 5th grade teachers for a couple of hours, doing whatever I can to help them get ready for the first day of school (Monday). Then all the paraprofessionals are having a lunch meeting with the principal, which I am quite looking forward to. It'll be nice to meet all the others before school starts.

I'm nervous too, but I know I will thoroughly enjoy it. Have a great evening!

Hanging Out With My Ghoulfriend

Here's another card made with the new "Totally Witchin'" set from My Favorite Things. I did some paper piecing with the dresses with some Basic Grey paper, added a little charm and some ribbon, and here's the finished result. The grass was painted with some Niji Pearlescent Paints, so it's quite shimmery :)

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Is it that time again???

Yep! New releases coming soon from The Cat's Pajamas! And by "soon", I mean before the end of this month! The DT members have all been busy working on samples for you, so make sure you keep an eye on the blogs for the next week or two...there may even be some BLOG CANDY involved at some point :)

Now for a first peek...check out Sprinkle and her pile of presents! :)

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

TCP Tuesday - Inspiration Challenge :)

Happy Tuesday! And that means it's TCP Tuesday :) Some of you may know that, sadly, Carole has taken a position with Cornish Heritage Farms and is no longer with the TCP DT :( We will all miss Carole but wish her much success in her new role!

Jen has kindly offered to take over the Inspiration challenges, so hop over to Jen's blog and check out this week's "birthday" challenge from our newest Hipster Hostess!

For my card I used one of the new paper packs from Die Cuts With A View. The colors just screamed "birthday" to me, so that's where I started. The pattern made me think of a knitted sweater, so I decided to use TCP's "Knitting Kitty" and "So Much Yarn" stamps. I also added some stitching with embroidery floss to continue the yarn theme...

Monday, August 11, 2008

Frighteningly Fun Halloween! And a SALE :)

Here's one of the cards I made this weekend :) It's a set from My Favorite Things called "Totally Witchin'" - I love it! Check out all the images here.
Also, one of my favorite bloggers, Tracy Clemente, started a sketch challenge - so this card was made using Tracy's sketch. Thanks, Tracy!!
And talking of MFT, Kim is having a Summer sale! Some of the original MFT sets are 25% off! You can read all the info at Kim's blog :) Happy shopping!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Hubby post

I found this little quiz on Heather's blog and thought I'd play along...feel free to join me!

What is his name? Iain or Dad
How long have you been married? 15 years on September 15th
How long did you date? 2 1/2 years
How old is he? 41! Hey - I'm too young to have a hubby in his 40s! :)
Who eats more? Ummm...probably me. It's an emotional eating thing...
Who said I love you first? I believe that was Iain.
Who is taller? Iain is, but only by about an inch. We're both short Brits.
Who sings better? Of course, that would be me :)
Whose temper is worse? Iain's by far. I'm pretty calm and it takes a lot for me to "lose it".
Who does the laundry? Me. I do it the right way.
Who pays the bills? Right now Iain does. We had a time when I did; it seems to go in phases.
Who cooks dinner? Mostly me. Iain does all the grilling and picking-up of take-out, though.
Who mows the lawn? Neither of us does that now that we live here in the mountains. It's all just rough scrub and doesn't need mowed. In California, though, it was Iain's job. He was very particular about it, too!
Who wears the pants in the family? We share them.

A brief Sunday hello :)

I hope you're having a fabulous weekend! We've had some bizarre weather here over the past few days...on Friday night it rained for over an hour and we got several inches of rain all at once...there was a stream running quickly down the hill around our house; also the drain at the end of the driveway (like a tunnel under the road) got blocked with rocks, sticks and gravel, so Iain spent 2 hours on Saturday morning unblocking the drain - just in case...

Yesterday I got some stamping done - I've been using the brand new stamps from My Favorite Things' August release, so I'll have those for you tomorrow :) They are sooooo much fun!

Enjoy your Sunday :)

Card details: Stamps: A Muse; Patterned Paper and Fiber: Basic Grey "Boxer" collection; Nestabilities dies

Saturday, August 09, 2008

Part-time job for me!

Well, it's been a while since I had regular paid employment, but I'm going to be working at Jamie's school as a paraprofessional for the 5th grade team :) It's only for a couple of hours a day, but that works well for me so that I can still continue with Weight Watchers, going to the gym, working on my own school work, and of course my DT projects!

I'm going to orientation on Monday, and will start on the same day as Jamie - Monday 18th. I guess I'll have to go shopping - I don't think I have many stain-free clothes :) LOL!

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Hi Sylvia :) Also about the embossed paper :)

A blog reader called Sylvia (in Canada) asked about the paper piecing I did on the MFT cards earlier this week.

What I do is stamp the image on white paper and patterned paper, then cut out what I need from the patterned paper and place it over the image on the white paper. It's kind of fun, like a puzzle, and the layers of paper add to the dimension of the image.

Also, some readers asked about the paper on the Flopsey "Cream of the Crop" card; I didn't emboss it; it was already embossed when I bought it. I may be wrong, but I believe I bought it in a pack at Michael's or Hobby Lobby :)

A few years can make a big difference :)

I was browsing through some photos today and came across this one of Nattie (age 8). It was taken on the first day of school in 2005, when we were still living in Murrieta, CA. She looks soooo young compared to photos I have taken of her this year!

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Flopsey - and brand new stamps from My Favorite Things :)

Flopsey is a new character who was added to the My Favorite Things collection with the July release. There are two Flopsey sets, called "Gardener Flopsey" and "I'm Pullin' for You". These images are perfect for coloring and/or paper piecing; I did a little of both with this card and layout.

And...if you like Flopsey, you'll be happy with the August stamp release from MFT which is taking place on Wednesday night (9pm - 11pm EST) over at the MFT forum on Splitcoast Stampers.

There are five new sets being released this month, and Kim has also added ribbon to the MFT store! In addition, there is a new "Girl Who Wants It All Special": one of each new set for just $65! And there will be a chance to be this month's Guest Designer. Check out all the details here.

Yep - it's Tuesday!

This week's TCP Tuesday Challenge is a sketch challenge. You'll find the sketch and all the details over on Leigh's blog - she's the Hostess with the Mostess this week.

My card is made with the "Uga", "Buga" and "Boo" stamps by The Cat's Pajamas. The patterned paper is by K and Company, and the Dew Drops are from The Robin's Nest. I'm looking forward to seeing the fabulous cards from this sketch - have fun!!

Monday, August 04, 2008

Monday ramblings - and a card :)

I woke Iain up (just after 2am Cleveland time) to tell him about our visitor...and he was bummed that he didn't see it! LOL! The kids were intrigued and of course had lots of questions about it. Needless to say, the garage door was closed at 3pm yesterday!

Iain and Nattie got back last night after a fantastic time at Cedar Point. They rode everything they had planned, and said that the long lines were worth the wait for the super-high, super-fast rides :) Jamie and I had fun too. On Saturday he got two holes-in-one at the glow-in-the-dark golf, so he was very proud of himself for that :) And last night after we walked Tasha we watched "Over the Hedge", another of his favorite movies.

This week the kids have art camp in the mornings Monday through Thursday. My lessened amount of exercising these past few weeks has caught up with me (see mine and Benita's blog here), so I'll be hitting the gym this afternoon with my trainer and every other morning this week after I drop the kids off. I think that getting back into a routine will be a big help.
Today's card is made with an image by Memory Box. My great blogging friend Karrie also used this stamp last week - you can see her creation here :) Oh, and the sparkly paper I used is by Doodlebug. Isn't it pretty?

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Okay, so I guess bears really do live here...

I know, I've posted photos of bear footprints, and last weekend my hubby scooped not only dog poop from our yard, but elk and bear poop too. But still, I hadn't actually seen a bear, so I didn't quite grasp that these (large) animals really do roam around the mountains here. At night. In our yard.

About 10 minutes ago, though, I was sitting here in the family room finishing up some email before bedtime. Out of the corner of my eye I saw a shadow, and my immediate thought was that our friendly neighborhood fox was out for a nighttime stroll. Then I looked again and realized that this "fox" did not have a big, bushy tail and was somewhat larger than the average "fox". To quote Shaggy from Scooby-Doo: "Zoinks!"

Our garage door was still open and I saw the bear go in the garage, at which point my heart started to race at about a gajillion beats per minute - especially since there's a door that goes from the garage to the family room. I got the car keys and turned on the car alarm, thinking that the noise would send the bear rushing down the driveway in terror. Nope. The bear wandered out of the garage and stood on the front lawn, just 6 feet in front of the window where I was watching from! I couldn't believe it. I'd say he was about 3 feet tall from paw to shoulder - very stocky and slow-moving.

Then he (I'm just calling the bear "he") went back into the garage another 2 times before finally ambling back down the driveway into the darkness, taking his time about it. Determined little (actually, big) guy!

When my heart rate was somewhat controlled, I went through the living room to the garage to shut the garage door, while honking the car alarm - just in case. I noticed that Tasha's new bag of (unopened) dog food was pulled halfway out of the garage! The bear didn't want our trash, like we hear about - he wanted a big ol' helping of Purina!

Anyway, the garage is now secure. All doors locked. All windows closed. I'm heading to bed but am not sure how much I'll sleep! What a rush!

Saturday, August 02, 2008

Thank You!

I am a lucky lady! This week I was given blog awards by Emily, Janet, and Shirley!

The rules for the "Brilliante Weblog" award are:

The winner can put the logo on his/her blog.

Link to the person you received your award from.

Nominate at least 7 other blogs.

Put links to those blogs on yours.

Leave a message on the blogs of the people you have nominated.

So, in true blogger fashion I am giving the "Brilliante Weblog" award (left-hand side) to the following bloggers. Check out their blogs and enjoy!

1. Maureen

2. Jill

3. Shirley

4. Noelia

5. Tina

6. Tracy

7. Benita

The rules for the "Blogging Friends Forever" award are:

Only five people allowed

Four have to be dedicated followers of your blog

One has to be someone new or recently new to your blog or live in another part of the world.

You must link back to whoever gave you the award.The winner can put the logo on his/her blog.

Here's my list for the "Blogging Friends Forever" (right-hand side) award :)

1. Janet

2. Darcey

3. Sue

4. Linda

5. My "recently new" blogging friend, Emily

MFT Bunny Slippers

I've been playing around with one of MFT's July sets today :) This set makes me feel all warm and cozy inside - it's called "Bunny Slippers" and you'll see why on this layout and card. I did quite a bit of paper piecing with this set because of the nice large size of the images. I used the "Euphoria" collection from Basic Grey. I have to say, I really love how both pieces turned out! The cardstock letters on the layout are by Heidi Grace and the flowers are all Primas. Thanks for stopping by - enjoy the rest of your weekend!

Busy day - and "a tweet little note"

The kiddos and I were up and out the door early yesterday morning (Friday) so that Jamie and I could drop Nattie off at the airport. She flew to Chicago (by herself!) and met Iain there (he's been there on business this week), and the two of them flew to Cleveland. They'll be there till Sunday. Why? To ride the rollercoasters at Cedar Point, of course! They are both rollercoaster crazy and have read about several rides at this park over the last few years. Finally they're getting to go and check them out. I don't know who's more excited: Iain or Nattie! Ha ha!
So it's just Jamie and me this weekend. We started off our few days together in true Jamie fashion - by watching a SpongeBob DVD ("Pest of the West") this evening :) Tomorrow it's glow-in-the-dark golf! Yep! Then lunch at California Pizza Kitchen - yum!
Today's card ("a tweet little note") is an image by A Muse. I colored it with my Copics, used some patterned paper by Heidi Grace (Fiskars), and my square Nestabilities dies. Thanks for stopping by - I hope you have a terrific weekend. What are you up to?