Monday, December 31, 2007

Welcome 2008!

Happy New Year!!! I'm hoping to get myself back on track this year - that's my resolution anyway! I've been thinking about my 2008 goals and have decided to make these three things my priorities:
1. I want to take better care of myself - including more exercise, better sleep habits and of course - better eating habits.
2. I intend to entertain more. My goal is to reconnect with old friends by having someone over for dinner at least once a month.
3. I need to spend more time reconnecting with Kim too. We're only a few months away from having an empty nest and I'm feeling the need to rekindle the romance in our marriage.
I've got lots more - but I decided to keep it simple to start with and I can always add more later. I hope everyone has fun seeing the new year in and that all your best wishes come true in 2008!

Friday, December 28, 2007

Goodbye Santa - For Another Year

After all the work leading up to Christmas it's hard to believe how quickly its over. But all the gifts have now been opened and the cookies have been eaten. The radio is back to its regular programing and the neighborhood looks suddenly dark after getting used to seeing all the beautifully lit houses since Thanksgiving. We enjoyed all of it while it lasted, but it seems strangely liberating to have some time to myself once again - something I can't even imagine in the weeks before Christmas. I always miss the twinkling lights when I take down the Christmas decorations, so I think I'll leave them up for a few more days. I need to get all the decorations back into their boxes and up to the attic for another year. But tonight I think I'll treat myself to a movie in the dark with the Christmas lights on and I'll totally enjoy them in peace and quiet now that the Christmas rush is behind me.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas!!!

If I could have a special dream
Coming true on Christmas morn',
I would want the world to see
How His Father smiled when Christ was born.
The greatest gift the world has known!
So come on kids, look high and low
For all the toys you've dreamed to find,
But I believe you'll never know
A greater joy than Jesus' love inside . . . . (Amy Grant)

Dashing Through The Snow

This year we decided to spend some time over the holidays visiting with Kim's family in Omaha. Unfortunately, since I needed to be back at work on Wednesday and seeing as I refused to spend all of Christmas day in the car, we had to make it a quick trip up to Omaha on Saturday and return home on Monday - crazy, but really long enough considering the expense of staying in a hotel while we were there, not to mention the kids being bored stiff while sitting around at Uncle Doug's house or Grandma's apartment with us old folks while we reminisce and re-tell stories they've heard before and care nothing about. I was a little concerned Saturday morning when I saw the weather map on the news as we were getting ready to leave. It looked like we might be in for some bad roads through Kansas, but after listening to the forecast and looking up travel information on the internet we convinced ourselves that it wouldn't be too bad. BIG MISTAKE!!! What is normally an 8-hour trip stretched out to 11 very anxious hours ! The interstate became completely snowpacked and the blowing snow caused white-out conditions. At times you couldn't see more than a couple of feet in front of the dashboard. We saw nine accidents, dozens of cars in ditches and several overturned vehicles. Once we accidentally exited the freeway after mistaking the exit ramp for the road. Smart people would have found a place to stop and wait for the storm to blow over, but Kim was "a man on a mission" so we continued on -- often at the breakneck speed of 25 mph. For awhile I wanted to turn back, but there comes a time when it's better to keep going forward in hopes that you'll drive out of the storm rather than returning in conditions that you know are dreadful! Kristin summed it up best after waking up to the blizzard from her backseat nap. She sat up, looked around and exclaimed "Holy Crap!"

Friday, December 21, 2007

Cosmo Cricket Junkie!

I saw this card posted on Cosmo Cricket's Blog and I just loved everything about it! If I had to chose a paper company who consistantly inspires me, this would be the one! Their papers are just beautiful and the way everything in their line coordinates so beautifully wow's me every time - not to mention their wonderful sense of humor. I guess I'm just a Cosmo Cricket junkie!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Can Someone Tell Me Why???

Why does a cat ALWAYS have to get in whatever box you have out at the moment? Poor Jenna has been trying to work a very hard jigsaw puzzle for over a week but Gizmo is fascinated with the box and will not stay out of it! Even though she has covered her work space with towels, throw pillows and scolded him repeatedly, it seems he's found a new favorite place. There's no arguing with a determined cat - I guess Jenna will just have to adjust (or put the puzzle away).

Teacher's Christmas Gift Baskets

I love to make these little gift baskets as teacher's gifts or gifts for special people we know. I love to do baking during the holidays and I fill the baskets with goodies we've baked - gets them out of the house so they don't tempt us to eat them all! This year Jenna wanted me to give baskets to her two vocal music teachers and I also made one to give to my mother-in-law and a sweet neighbor lady. I lined them with green Christmas fabric and filled them with Snickerdoodles, reindeer poop (a/k/a buckeyes), Christmas cut-out sugar cookies, a small loaf of strawberry bread, a small cheeseball, paper plates and matching napkins, hot chocolate mixes, and sprinkled them with candy kisses and Hershey's miniatures. Everything gets wrapped in holiday Cellophane and glitzed up with curling ribbons, small Christmas ornaments and bows. I also hung one of my puzzle wreath ornaments on each basket, as well as beautiful tags I received from a tag swap I participated in at the Creative Scrap Shack!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

I Love Christmas Time!

I love everything about the Christmas season! I love getting out the decorations that I haven't seen in a year. I love the twinkling lights and the beautiful ribbons and garlands. It's so nice to see people getting into the holiday spirit and doing nice things for each other. I love school Christmas programs and Christmas music on the radio. I love the parties with family and friends as well as the baking and shopping and wrapping. I love picking out Christmas cards and making our Christmas arrangements. I love giving gifts and decorating the tree. I hope everyone is having a wonderful holiday season!!!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Puzzle Wreath Christmas Decoration

Puzzle Wreath Christmas Decoration

I made these little wreaths as a Technique Tuesday project for Creative Scrap Shack. I hate to throw things away so it made me feel good to be able to recycle an old puzzle and leftover scraps of paper. This is an easy Christmas decoration that can also be used as a small gift and it costs almost nothing to make. Directions for making the wreaths can be found at the Scrap Shack at the following link:

Monday, December 17, 2007

2007 Snow Ball

Jenna had a big day last Saturday! After a morning spent taking the ACT test and an afternoon appointment to get her hair done, Jenna and her date, Ross White, went to the high school winter dance - the "Snow Ball". They both looked wonderful and so grown up as they left to join a larger group of seven other couples for pictures and dinner at the country club of one of the parent's before the dance. Aferward they went to another friend's house for an all-night party. Jenna had a scare on Friday night when she tried on her dress only to discover she had lost enough weight to make the bodice hang obscenely low! We tried calling several stores to see if they had the same dress in a smaller size, but were told there were none in the Oklahoma City area. Luckily for us, a seamstress we know from church was available to do some last-minute alterations and saved the day by making the dress fit perfectly. These pictures don't really show much of the dress, but it was beautiful and Jenna looked beautiful in it. It makes me sad that my girls have grown up so fast, but I'm so proud of the young ladies they have become!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Ice Storm 2007

Monday morning I woke up fully expecting an ice storm since they had been predicting it all week. I went to the living room to watch the news so I wouldn't disturb Kim who was still sound asleep. As I watched the news coverage it became apparent that this was going to be a record-breaking ice storm. Just as they were saying to expect "wide-spread power outages" our power went out. It was then that I realized I should have been busy getting things done while we had power rather than laying there watching the news! I had looked forward to a snow/ice day since I still have so much Christmas stuff that needs to get done. I even went shopping for all my Christmas baking supplies so I could get some baking done if we didn't have to work on Monday - the possibility of having no power never occurred to me! When Jenna got up we gathered all the candles we could find and we made a shrine of them on the glass-toped coffee table. It was really pretty and we both enjoyed playing a game of war (I won!) by candlelight. Later some of Jenna's friends came over and played games and worked on a jigsaw puzzle. By evening our power had been restored and the streets were more slush than ice so Kim went out and bought pizzas for us and Jenna's friends who stayed here most of the evening. We were only without power for 6 hours - I say only because many people are still without power a week later so I have no right complaining about sitting in the dark for the best part of one day. We lost a large limb off of our large backyard tree, and another smaller tree lost a branch on the roof of our shed, so we got off a lot easier than many people. It's hard to capture the beauty of the storm in a picture - everything just glistened. It's hard to believe that something so beautiful can be so destructive at the same time.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Another Stab At It!

Ok - so I didn't do so well at keeping up my blog. Here's to making another stab at it! From this day forward I'll try to do better! To begin with, ions ago my friend, Tricia from Creative Scrap Shack tagged me. I'm long overdue in responding but here goes:

The rules are as follows so if I tag you you'll know what to do!!!

Link to the "tagger" & post the rules

Share 7 random/weird facts about yourself

Tag 7 people & link to them.

Leave comments on their blogs, so they know they've been tagged

Random and Weird Facts About Me:

  • I am Number 4 of 6 kids. I have three older sisters and two younger brothers.
  • I love kitty cats - can't get enough of them.
  • I love to swim and used to race freestyle on my high school swim team.
  • I lost my mother to breast cancer over ten years ago and still miss her and think of her every day.
  • I love to go camping and hiking but rarely ever go since my family detests it!
  • I'm afraid of dogs.
  • I LOVE to eat cookie dough!

I know, I know - I'm not very exciting!

Christmas Card Fun!

Apparently I didn't buy any after Christmas sale cards last year. I was almost positive I had, but when I got the Christmas stuff down from the attic there were no cards in my stash from last year's bargains. It turned out alright though, since I had joined in a Christmas card exchange with some of my croppy friends and had enough homemade cards to send out to everyone. I have to say - everyone outdid themselves this year! Each card was beautiful (some were too beautiful to mail). I made lots of extras, so I could send everyone a homemade card. I had so much fun that I'm looking forward to making my own cards again next year! The inside says: Warm and happy holiday wishes from our home to yours!

Sunday, December 2, 2007

December DT Challenge

This layout was done as my Design Team challenge for December. It was a challenge to CSS members to either use the pictures you get in your Christmas cards on a layout or to use an ad that I posted to inspire a layout. Here is the layout I came up with. The red outline was stitched on my sewing machine. Pieces of Christmas card pictures were used to fill in some of the blank spaces.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

December DT Layouts

The December kit from Creative Scrap Shack included some of the most beautiful papers ever! These scans really don't do it justice or capture how rich the paper looks in reality. The scan also doesn't show the use of the stickles. I used it in the center of the poinsetta and to outline some of the detail on the flower. Can you tell that I loved this kit??? Well, in case you didn't catch that, let me make it clear. The December kit was awesome!!!

Kristin's First Christmas

This layout was also done using the Creative Scrap Shack's December kit. I had so much fun working with these awesome supplies. The papers were simply beautiful! I can't even believe these pictures were taken 20 years ago! It really seems impossible. They grow up way too fast, don't they?

This Poem was so perfect I just had to use it:
What a precious bundle of joy you are;
Cute from head to toe;
You melt our hearts with your sweetness;
Everywhere you go;
You're a special gift this Christmas;
Sent from Heaven above;
A perfect little angel;
For all of us to love.