Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Let's Make a Deal

Last night I found this letter on the kitchen table.

It was addressed to me. And me only. SO, I opened it and read:

And then I laughed so hard that I was crying.

Tell me it isn't just me. Please.

Monday, January 30, 2012

2012 Goals Meeting #1

Well, I have had my first meeting, and have decided that I need to be a lot more proactive. I need to get a lot more detailed with my plans. It's all about learning what works for me, so I am okay with this and not going to beat myself up.

I lost about a week being sick. I just had NO motivation to do anything at all. So, I didn't. Sometimes you have to listen to what your body is telling you. It's usually pretty smart. I needed rest, and I got it. Anyhow, I am back on track now.

I have decided to make a Goals Tracker Book to help with my meetings.

I grabbed my supplies and tools:

Composition notebook, stapler, paper cutter, scrap piece of paper and pen.

I cut the paper into 1inch by 4 inch-ish pieces. Folded them in half, wrapped one around a page and stapled it onto one sheet about every 4 or 5 sheets of paper in the composition book. Pretty simple, but very effective.

I picked a composition notebook because they are pretty strong, and I can replace it pretty cheaply. AND it has the added benefit of being just the perfect size for me.

Now I have a dedicated book for my goals. I have already started detailing plans, with deadlines, to accomplish what I want this year. Sounds a bit overkill, but I have a lot I want to get done. Hopefully this will help prevent anything from falling through the cracks. Lists are a must have in my arsenal.

I'm going to sew a cover for the notebook. I'll let you know when I've done it. 

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Tweet Wall Hanging

Gini over at the illustious ORDER of the OPUS GLUEI, is challenging us to make something, anything, regarding BIRDS, and/or all things BIRDIE. I made this:

It will be a wall hanging. I envision it to be somewhat similar to a dream catcher, but this is a LOVE catcher. I'm thinking I'll hang it in my room. And not one of the girls' rooms.

The pattern is mine. Not really much of a pattern at all. Just sort of winged it. No pun intended on this challenge. But I suppose it does fit.

I used a 6 inch embroidery hoop that I saved from a yard sale, some leftover fabric from a purse Megan made a few months back, my embroidery threads, some leftover felt from a project Melissa made a few years back, ribbon from my stash and a piece of scrap batting.

This wall hanging was inspired by the works of lova revolutionary on Flickr.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Saturday Sum Up

This week there really isn't too much to report:

  • Danny was sick last Sunday and Monday.
  • I started sniffling on Tuesday.
  • Stayed home on Wednesday and Thursday. Sick.
  • Megan started sniffling Friday.
  • I went to the eye doctor Friday because my eye was REALLY RED. I have a virus. In my eye. ???
  • Morgan started sniffing this morning.
  • I am still reading "Clash of Kings". Didn't really read when I was sick.
  • The Doctor made me feel better.

  • I did manage to make a project for OPUS GLUEI this morning. For the new challenge tomorrow. You'll have to come back to see what it is. BUT, here's a sneak peak. 

  • Dinner tonight is Sunshine Chicken. Danny is grilling. Outside. It's in the 60's today.
  • Morgan and Melissa are volunteering at the Special Olympics right now.
  • I feel SO much better today. I am going to tackle more of my Studio tomorrow. 

Friday, January 27, 2012

Friday Fill Ins

1. It's time to get back to work. Enough of this cold already.

2. Please stop at the store on your way home ... and don't forget the tissues.

3. I'm trying to get a move on things, but "LIFE" keeps happening.

4. "Can you take me to the mall?" ... that was the last funny comment I received.

5. Please send the cure for colds. And more chocolate.

6. We WILL go on a date cause I'm in it for the long haul.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to eating dinner without a box of tissues at my place setting, tomorrow my plans include more purging and a little bit of creating and Sunday, I want to package up some things I need to mail.

You can find more Friday Fill Ins HERE.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

What's in your Bag?

Still not feeling well. So you get a peek at the contents of my purse.
 You can get some details on Flickr.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Wordless Wednesday

Riding the couch today.
Surfin' & sneezin'.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Better late than never...

...isn't that the saying?

One of my goals this year is to get Birthday cards out to loved ones. Just a note to let them KNOW that I AM thinking about them on their special day.

I am cheating. I know, hard to believe that I would take a shortcut on this one. Especially since I have enough supplies to make a gazillion cards. BUT the whole purpose here is to actually get the cards OUT to people, so I am using postcards.

They are 5x7. And they are gorgeous. I got them free from VISTAPRINT.COM. They run a constant special. Go check them out. I was going to say that I wasn't compensated for this little plug, but I did get the cards free, so I guess that wouldn't really be true now would it. Anyway, go, check it out. They also offer business cards and invitations, etc...

Oh, yeah, I also had all of our names printed on the back of the card too. Cool, huh???

The first two went out in the mail today. They are late. BUT they are getting there. AND that makes me doing GREAT toward my goal of getting cards out this year.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Extinction isn't possible

This little one, who really isn't so little anymore, is both embracing her teen years and fighting letting go of her childhood. I don't think she'll ever really let go. How could she!?! She is my daughter afterall. We had a pretty mellow weekend. Danny got home Friday feeling under the weather, and the rest of us just kind of followed along with his energy level. We watched way too much TV and didn't do much of anything else. (Well, I did. I am in the midst of a major purge in the Studio.)

Although she looks rather melancoly here, she really wasn't. She was just enjoying TV with her Unisaur (her term for the Unicorn Dinosaur we picked up in the $1 bin on Saturday.) She wanted it, and I let her get it. I want her to hold on to her imagination for as long as possible. I want for her to be carefree and have fun. I am in no hurry for her to grow up. It's highly overrated.

I love that she has her own agenda in life. She has her own, different ideas about things. And I love that she is confident enough to listen to her heart.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Sweet Sunday

Brownie cookies. Made and eaten yesterday. ALL of them. By ALL of us.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Saturday Sum Up

  • Megan made another purse. Some girls like shoes. She LOVES purses.
  • I helped Melissa make one.
  • More of The Doctor and Rose.

  • Chinese food.
  • Shredded beef tacos.
  • Morgan went to the mall with Abby and saw New Years Eve.

  • Danny went to San Diego. That's why we got to have Chinese food. It's a pretty big deal for us girls. LOL
  • Reading "The Clash of Kings" by George R.R. Martin.
  • Temperature stayed in the high 40's this week.
  • The purge is coming along nicely.
  • Megan took my hair appt. Morgan is getting hers cut today. Mine is pushed out to Feb 3rd. Typical. Mom's always change their schedules for the sake of the rest.
  • It's raining right now.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Show and Purge

I am one of those people who get interested in WAY too many things. Sewing, painting, embroidery, inking, stamping, card making, scrapbooking, etc... I am also one of those people who think I can DO anything. I guess it's a good thing. Mostly.

BUT, just take a look at what happens when you combine the aforementioned traits with a pack-rat:

The sorting has already begun. That's the stuff in the foreground.

Most of the stuff on the floor is old school papers and the like. How do you deal with those things? I have been insulating the floor in my Studio. Why, YES, those are Easter eggs. In Easter baskets. Why, NO, those aren't the Easter baskets we use. Things have GOT to GO!

YUP. Total messy chaos. I THINK I have come to a decision to get rid of most of this stuff. It wasn't an easy thing to wrap my hoarding brain around. And will get more difficult as I really get to it. It also isn't easy putting these pictures up. BUT, that is why I did it. I need to wake up to the reality of my craft pit. I need to purge to allow my creative energy to flow more freely.

If I continue to think of the space as a whole, I'll never get to it. I know I won't. Because that's how I have been thinking about it so far. And NOTHING has gotten accomplished. SO, I am going to focus on one area right now. The desk top.

I have already done a little bit towards clearing the desk top. Hopefully I can get to the rest this week. I have way too many supplies. Supplies I don't use. I am purging. Yup, that's a pumpkin. And a Christmas tree too.

I have 3 categories right now. KEEP, GET RID OF and TRASH. I'll figure out what to do with the GET RID OF pile later. (As in after that box is full.) Some I will give away and I am thinking that some of the stuff I will try to sell on eBay. I have enjoyed everything that I have brought into my Studio, but now it is time for some of it to move on.

Wish me luck. Wish me will-power. AND wish me motivation. And come back next week for an update. I hope that I will at the very least be shamed into action.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

12 on the 12th - January Report

I didn't do so well. It turned out to be 4 on the 12th. I had great intentions. I started out okay. I forgot to get the youngest in the morning shots. Oops.

We live right across the street from the bus stop. So they wait inside.

And then I went to work and got caught up in the normal schedule.

It happened to be trash day. Yuck.

And lost the thought. So I got nothing after the morning stuff. And even then, I only got a few shots.

I know this looks staged. But it really isn't. My counter looks like this EVERY morning.

Prince Zeke on his royal cushion.

I love the shots I did get. I am getting excited to see what I can get if I remember all day.

I'll try again in February.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

WIP Wednesday

Melissa and I made a purse Sunday.

She picked the fabrics. Santa brought her a fat quarter bundle of these really cool robots. I guided her through the pattern. She did most of the sewing. On her new sewing machine. Courtesy of Santa as well.

I love the choices she made. I might just have to borrow this from her.

I was able to get blocks made for Grace's group in do.Good Stitches. Color scheme and pattern were picked by the quilter this month. It's a really lovely combo, and I can't wait to see the finished quilt.

I also made this block as a request for someone in the 3x6 Sampler group on Flickr. Her color choices are Grey, Yellow and Purple. I hope she likes the block.


Melissa's Purse
do.Good Stitches blocks

Quilts with No progress:
Melissa's Block's
Birdie Stitches
My Leaves
Pastel Cabins
Farmer's Wife

Non-Quilt projects with No Progress:
Christmas Disappearing 9 Patch
Christmas Placemats
Cup Sleeves
Embroidered Ornaments
White Crocheted Afghan
Composition Notebook Covers
Pillow Covers

I am linking up to Lee's WIP Wednesday.

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Shredded Beef Tacos

I am a working mom. I have to come home and make meals. Sometimes (almost everyday) I really don't feel like cooking. It doesn't help that I really don't like our stove. But that's a whole different story, so back to this one.

I have come to terms with the fact that I have to improvise. My family LOVES, LOVES, LOVES homemade shredded beef tacos. They take time to make. They require a big pan of grease. I am trying to not eat so much grease.

My compromise is SOFT TACOS. Not exactly the same, but not too shabby either. And based on the amount of leftovers (none) I think that my family liked it well enough too.

I made the shredded beef in the crock pot. I used a 2.5 pound chuck roast seasoned with salt, pepper and minced garlic, then threw 2 cut up onions in. Some underneath, on the sides and on the top. And added about 1/2 cup of water. I cooked it on low for 8 hours. Didn't lift the lid once.

The meat was so very tender. And tasted great. Did I mention NO leftovers.

Now I just have to figure out what other recipes I can improvise...

Monday, January 16, 2012

Idea of the century!

Sometimes you get an idea and smack your forehead wondering why you hadn't had that thought before. I had one of those today.

I received an order of stamps that I had ordered back in October. Not bad service, just really busy scheduling. This order happened to be the cling mount type. I am almost, but not quite, ashamed to admit that I have sets of wood mount stamps that I have not yet mounted. SO, I decided to mount them all today and possibly make something.

WELL, while I was mounting the cling mounts, it occurred to me that I could probably just skip the wood block on the wood mount sets, and just put the sticker on the back of the stamp. SO, I did. AND boy am I happy I did.

They fit so much nicer in those DVD size cases.

They take up WAY less room. AND they DO stick. I tried. It works. I am genius. LOL

AND then, as oft happens, my plans to create were set asunder as my youngest, who is now addicted to Doctor Who, suckered me into a little marathon session with The Doctor and Rose. Not complaining. I happen to love the series. We are now up to the 8th episode.

I want one of those screwdrivers. Can you just imagine the trouble I could find???


Sunday, January 15, 2012

Take a picture....

The challenge at OPUS GLUEI right now is:

Take a picture, it'll last longer.

Here's my take on this challenge:

This year one of my goals is to take a family picture once a month. Not a portrait. That would be impossible. No, I am not exaggerating. It would be like teaching worms to play football. Yeah, it would be just like that. Anyway, we had one taken last week, so I made a layout. ('Cuz another goal is to get some scrapbooking done.) This page is completely digital. I might have a book printed at the end of the year. Or not. Don't know yet. BUT, I have a picture of our family. Right now. AND I have a layout. SCORE!

I used layout #189 from Creative Scrappers.

Background is Mamarazzti, flowers are from Kitschy Digitals by Danielle Thompson, other "papers" are from Digital Freebies from last January. Put together using PSE 7. That's it.

OH, and I finally learned how to add drop shadows in PSE. I am beside myself with thrilled-ness. I love learning new tricks. I haven't taken a class. I should. I will. Someday. Until then, every little trick I learn tickles me PINK.

Now it's your turn. Head over to OPUS GLUEI, and show us your picture challenge.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Saturday Sum Up

I am thinking about possibly trying to put together a SUM UP of each week. Just an informal recount of the events of the week.

This past week:

  • I got a tablet.
  • I traveled to DC for a meeting.
  • I ate breakfast at IKEA for $1.05. (after taxes)

  • The girls got to eat Hamburger Helper. (I don't eat it, so they are thrilled when I travel because they get Danny to make it for them.)
  • I got Melissa hooked on Doctor Who. Yup. We started with Season 1.

  • Zeke found a racoon in the backyard. He only barked at it. Whew.
  • Morgan read the latest Morganville Vampires book, Destined and started Brisinger.
  • Megan met with her Polar Plunge group. Yup, she's crazy.
  • And of course there is another Hockey game to add to the list.

  • I worked on some of my WIP's.
  • Danny packed his lunches. In a fancy lunch bag. You just can't fake style.

 There was also the normal stuff, you know, school and work, too.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Friday Fill Ins

And here we go...

1. When I looked out the window this morning it was still dark outside.

2. Why we have to get up before the birds doesn't make sense to me.

3. Remind me to set my alarm. Or I'll sleep in for sure.

4. Creating is something I love to do.

5. TP is valuable in a house with 4 females. Don't run out.

6. I cleaned the refrigerator recently and found that I still don't like it.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to quitting time, tomorrow my plans include sewing, showering and yet another hockey game, and Sunday I want to sleep in, enjoy a leisurely day of sewing and relax.

You can find more Friday Fill Ins here.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Swoon - I have been bitten by the bug...

Sometimes a design will just capture your attention. Make you look twice. Or thrice. Or more. This design has done just that. I think the name of the block should be changed to SWOON & DROOL. Much more appropriate I think.

Katy over at Monkey Do, is hosting this quilt along. There really aren't any deadlines. I can most certainly do that. There is also a flickr group. Go on, check it out. Even if you don't want to Swoon with us, you can drool over all the gorgeous blocks these talented ladies are making into dreamy quilts.

One of my goals for 2012 is to make 12 quilts. Well, I have 9 of them already in various stages of progress. BUT that leaves me room for 3 more. SO, I am going to make a SWOON quilt. Cool your jets, I am going to finish 3 of the quilts in progress before I start another one. (maybe)  BUT, how, oh how, can I pass up this quilt-a-long!!!

not the best picture, but it's the best I have at almost midnight

The block here will be put into the Citrus quilt I am in the midst of making. This isn't the color scheme for MY Swoon quilt. I still haven't decided on that. Yet. I LOVE this block. SO much so, that I made a 12 inch version for my Citrus quilt this past summer. I didn't have the pattern, I just sorta made it up as I went along. I'll get the pattern for the quilt.

Here are a few of the quilts that made me Swoon & Drool:

Go ahead and Swoon. You know you want to.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

WOYWW - Priorities

I had to travel to DC for a meeting. First things packed:


Just a little fun grab bag for the hotel room. I have got to finish those birdie blocks. I want to make a few tweaks to make them my own. And that poor bird with the deer needs some legs. Also need to add a few more inspiration pics to my Art Notebook. And if i have time, get started on those coffee cup sleeves. I just may have brought too much to do. Ya think!!!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Family Picture - January Edition

First one taken at a hockey game. Our team lost. But we had fun. Together.

I can see the pride in Danny's face. The cooperation in Morgan's. Melissa is, well, her goofy self. Megan's face is BEAUTIFULLY back to normal. And in mine I see many chocolate bars, chips and lots of ice cream. sigh.

Off to a good start. Now only 11 more to go...

Monday, January 9, 2012

Postcard from Austria

Frank left quite abruptly. Lorreina had no idea what she had said, or done, that made him go. She was devestated at first, and then slowly began pulling out of her shell. Again. Until she received the postcard.

It was true that they had only just met three weeks prior to his sudden departure, but she felt closer to him than anyone she had ever known. She felt as though he filled a void in her life that she didn't know existed. Until he left. His note left her with more questions than she had before. Now what was she to do. What was she to think. Or do.


I am linking this to the Postcard Challenge 2012.