Tuesday, March 27, 2007

I've Always Wanted To...

I'm a big Ellen DeGeneres fan and at the first of the year she talked about creating a Life List. Of course, her list consisted of things she wanted to accomplish in her lifetime. Daydreaming today, I was thinking about things I've always wanted to do, but for one reason or another haven't or most probably won't ever do. But they're fun to think about. Here's a peek at a few...

drive a volkswagon convertible
travel to exotic places-Australia and New Zealand, Paris, California (well, it's exotic to this mid-western girl!)
live near the ocean
be independent and not care what other people think
ride in a horse drawn carriage in the snow
be skinny

What have you always wanted to do? Hope everyone out in bloggyland will participate and leave a comment and share. :)

Friday, March 23, 2007


Really, thank goodness! The past month has been stressful at our house. Yesterday, I finally could let out a big sigh and felt like the stress had been lifted. Not sure why. I'm a total control freak so it's not like I gave up anything. Maybe I was just so tired of it that I couldn't hold on to it anymore. Anyway, did what I could at work today, checked in with my Jenny Craig consultant (lost another 1.8 pounds, BTW) and came home to kick back and catch up on my TIVO. Noone else here for a good hour and a half after I got home. Ellen and broadway on The View and a good cry and I'm better. I think it's "the change", but I cry about everything. Marky Mark was on Ellen and I cried. The cast of Les Mis on the View and I cry. The opening of the children's garden at the Botanical Garden and I cry. Geesh! Now, my BFF, Tammy will tell you I'm just a crier-an emotional gal. But lately it is ridiculous. Our preacher claims to cry at mall openings-that's me! No kidding!

Anyway, had something really cool happen in my world today. But suprise! I didn't cry. But I was so excited I was shaking when I called Tammy and my hubby to tell them. I got an email from Heidi Swapp today! Yep, me. I'm a little star struck and was so excited. Evidentally, she's been periodically sending students emails about their posts to the gallery. So, see, not that big a deal really, but cool nonetheless.

Not really sure where this is going actually so I guess I'll sign off. Brady is hankering for a pretzel and an icee from Target. Seems like a good excuse to make a run there so I'm off. Enjoy the weekend. Jeff has to work most of the weekend, but Brady and I are looking forward to a quiet, relaxing weekend. Might even do some cleaning around here. Oh, and some artful pursuits as well. Whatever you're doing-enjoy!

P.S. My apologies for breaking the "never post without a photo" rule of blogging. Sorry. No photo for rambling thoughts. :)

Thursday, March 22, 2007

AYTR Update

Thought I would give a little update on my year long class with Heidi Swapp over at Big Picture Scrapbooking called A Year To Remember (AYTR). This class is centered around a calendar album which is, in and of itself very cool, but for those of you who are less familiar with BPS, here's a little breakdown of the class schedule which will give you an idea of what we've been doing. Class "meets" each week online on Thursday's with a downloadable lecture from Heidi. She breaks the month up by making the first week about a Life Challenge, week two is the Art Challenge, week three is usually something more indepth or seasonal (this month was about St Pat's Day) and week four is usually the bonus week and she covers a technique or another type of challenge. She really encourages us to make the class our own. To go at our own pace and do as much or as little as we like. After all, this is about learning to live with intention-creating a year to remember.

For the most part, I have been able to complete the challenges and assignments, but the last month I have been slipping a little further behind each week. I've been determined to get caught up and I've finally completed my March layout. Our challenge for March was to count our blessings and then send thank you cards to folks to show our appreciation for what they add to our lives (this is one I didn't get done). Our art challenge was to take a word which summed up how we thought about our blessings and use it as our title. I chose "lucky girl"-lucky in love, lucky mom, lucky to have you (my siblings), lucky pals (me and my BFF) and SO LUCKY (me, Jeff and Brady at Disney last year).

Every month I say "this is my favorite art challenge!" This month we used so many cool techniques I had not done before. Great little tips here and there including making our own ghost embellishment with acrylic paint and transperancy. And I loved all the fun ideas for St Pat's Day-some I was able to do, some I'll use next year. I am really loving this class. I'm hoping to do a little more catching up and share my February layout later this weekend (also a favorite!). I just need to add a couple finishing touches to it. All of the layouts have had so many layers to them and have challenged me. My challenge to myself for April is to try not to just copy Heidi's example. I always end up changing things slightly anyway (see how I worked in a little orange?), but I'm hoping to really break out of the box this next month. Seriously, I really am-hoping at least. My scrapsister, Tammy knows I am a BIG scraplifter. :)

Okay, well, just wanted to share what I've been doing in my class. My MIL asked Jeff this week if I was enjoying my class (they gave it to me for Christmas). I have to say most definitely!

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Welcome Spring!

It's finally officially here-yeah! I've been longing for it to arrive and it's finally here. In typical Spring fashion, it's gotten warmer, overcast and raining this afternoon. Quiet, big bloppy drops of cold rain soaking our yard and coaxing the green right out of the ground. Love it. And we could use some Spring at our house. We're still struggling to adjust to the time change and just as March madness gets geared up, Jeff's business does too, so we are all tired and cranky. Brady's Spring break follows Easter this year so we are all looking forward to a couple of days to catch our breath as we move into Spring. So naturally my thoughts are on the colors of Spring and renewal and all things cheery and yummy. At least that's where I'm trying to keep them. Things have been a little stressful.

The photos are of some Spring-like things I've picked up lately. The first one is my find on my trip with Tammy to Kirkwood. Found this at a great little shop called, The White Rabbit. It's some sort of gardening bin and was the perfect blue green and great for storing paints. Or displaying the stuff I bought at Red Lead and hope to use to make vintage-y eggs. Love Red Lead and always come away so inspired I'm practically hyperventilating when I walk out. I hope to tackle the egg project this weekend. And lastly, another little splurge (honey, stop reading now) from Rebbeca Sower. Just chock full of all things Spring-love it!

So here's to April showers, May flowers and June bustin' out all over!

Monday, March 19, 2007

Happy Birthday To You!

Today is my sweet friend Tammy's birthday. Got to spend the day celebrating with her on Friday. Read all about it on her blog. We both had a great time. Today is also my mother in law's birthay. She is off to Colorado to see her daughter, Jana, but hope to see her soon and celebrate all the February and March birthday's on the Mullican side.

So, birthday girls-Happy Birthday! Enjoy your day!

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Isn't She Lovely?

At last, I have a printer! I think she is oh so wonderful! It's actually a very early birthday present. Just couldn't stomach paying for color copies and photo processing and all the running around and waiting that goes with it. Will now have to purchase paper and ink, but this will be much more economical in the long run. And being able to print at will is AWESOME! Looking forward to printing matte finish photos for all my minis and special projects.

Okay, off to bed. I bargained with Jeff that I'd do two three mile walks in exchange for purchasing the printer. I have one more to do tomorrow.

Edited: Couple of folks have asked what brand printer I purchased. It is an HP Photosmart C5180 All-in-One.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Happy St Paddy's Day!

Enjoy the day in all it' Irish-ness.
We have Upward awards ceremony and lunch and then Brady is spending the afternoon hanging out with his cousin Matt here at our house. I'm sure you're not suprised that Jeff will be watching basketball later today and I am going to attempt to clean up around here a little and scrapbook and stuff. I've got so many ideas of stuff I want to make swirling in my head I can hardly wait!

Have a great weekend!

Edited: Can you believe just a few days from the official start of Spring and we have snow today? Just west of us it managed to stick to the ground. Can't wait for Spring to be here for good!

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Rocker Chick

Don't ya just love a rocker chick?
You know, like Heart, Pat Benatar, Gwen Stefani, Avril Lavigne. Lately, my favorite thing to do when I'm driving in the car all by myself is to listen to what I call rocker chick music. Just blaring it as I drive down the road singing along. I'm sure it's quite a show for the other drivers passing me! Very liberating and a great stress release though. Right now I'm into Barlow Girl-they kind of have an Evanescence sound, but with a much more positive lyric content. Love Kelly Clarkson and Lisa Loeb, too (although not sure they would technically be classified as rocker chicks). I think what I like about these gals is that they exhibit strength and feminity at the same time. That through their music they are able to say how they feel, think, believe. And that each of them has enjoyed success-many times in a man's world. Not bad attributes really...
Emotionally Present

Maybe I need to tap into my inner rocker chick-hmmmm.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Retail Therapy

Had myself a little retail therapy over the last several days. Some actual old fashioned get out and walk through the store kind of shopping. One of my favorite little shops-Oma's. What a treat to go there. And after it being closed for the Winter it is always SO good to get there and see what is new. Found these 30 plus year old alphabet blocks (jar is Pottery Barn) and think I'll go back for the rest of them soon. And Michaels-there's always Michaels. Went to a different one rather than "mine" and wound up with some fun things. Yummy ribbons-I was into green that night w/ St Patty's day around the corner. And needing to get some Spring going I bought cherry blossom stems and a fun little sign.

And then there was PageMakers and Archivers on Saturday with Tammy. Don't really need an excuse, but P'makers was having an anniversary sale. My favorite purchase is the McGill index tab punch. Also, love the chipboard album, Daisy D's paper and Making Memories goodies I'm going to use to make a mini of our Easter photos this year. Rarely am I ahead of the game, but I've already purchased our outfits and this paper is perfect to go with the photos I hope to take! So many creative ideas swimming in my head right now. Need to finish up a couple of projects and move on to these new ones.

Spent alot of the weekend decompressing from a stressful week and our kitchen table shows the results. A real disaster, but it feels so good to be creative. Hope to have some completed projects to share by the end of the week.

Saturday, March 10, 2007


okay. be gentle. this is my first real attempt at the whole freestylin' thing. i absolutely love the idea behind this type of scrapbooking. i've been wanting to try this since i first saw emily falconbridge's layout in the autumn leaves book, freestyle. my friends who do creative memories have now passed out. :)

per emily's instructions, i soaked my 8x10 photo in water, sanded, bleached and painted. then stamped, added a few stickers and some bling and journaled. i kind of like the way it turned out and it was very cathartic. i've been trying to do the whole jenny craig thing again and actually haven't been doing too bad. but i have lots of issues and this was a theraputic way to get this off my chest. i'm actually really enjoying getting to know my counselor, but if i ever do get the weight off i'd like to train weightloss center counselors on the top 20 things NOT to say to fat folks. some people have no sense!

BTW, arrow stickers are bookworks from ek success, mini flower jewels are heidi (of course!) and the stamps are serendipity by technique tuesday.

journaling reads:
Imagine, she said. As though I had never once thought of what my life would be like without the weight. Little did she know I constantly imagined what it would be like to shop at Ann Taylor, wear a swimsuit and go to the pool, be confident again, have my husband be proud of me. Have I imagined what my life would be like? Why, yes, I have.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

March Madness

To most, March Madness is the culmination of college basketball season including the Sweet 16 and the Final Four. At our house it's nearly as important as Christmas and definitely more important than Fourth of July. Well, at least to Jeff. He is a major college basketball fan and I would venture to say, probably the biggest Fighting Illini fan out there. I'm told he's actually much better than he was in his more youthful days when absolutely nothing stood in his way of watching or listening to the games. I jokingly say, "hope no one ever dies during basketball season" because Jeff wouldn't be able to attend the funeral until after the game! So it's getting a little crazy around our house. Or at least harder to get Jeff's attention now that it's almost time for "the dance". Okay, okay, all you basketball fans. Sorry. But I realized today there is another kind of March Madness happening.

My friend Tammy and I laughed this morning after I had gotten off the phone with Jeff and was frustrated about something else we'd have to put off until after we find out if Illinois is going to be playing in the tournaments. I announced to her as I answered the other line, "It's March Madness!". She said, "yeah, it's march and it's maddening". I agreed. What was going on?!? We turned the page to a new month and seems like everything has gone crazy! Then we both rattled off a list of crazy things going on for both of us. And laughed knowing that this too shall pass-we hope!

Anyway, it has been crazy lately. Fighting to keep up and all the while wanting to hide from it all. I think it's Spring Fever coming on. Saw my first big, fat robin today. Ah! the harbinger of Spring! The warmer days are coaxing my daffodils further and further out of the soil and I am wanting to clean out and purge. But that will have to wait a bit longer until things calm down around here. March madness continues for us as Brady's basketball season with Upward winds down, things are heating up for me at work with lots of change there, Brady's big 3rd grade muscial is tommorrow night and of course, Illini basketball's season coming to a close. Just a few of the top things going on at the Mullican household. I am very much looking forward to Easter and a season of overall renewal. Until then, I'll just put one foot in front of the other and keep moving with the madness. Otherwise, I might get run over!

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Musings on a Sunday Afternoon

all three of us went to Target after church today. i don't think we have ever done that together-a first!
could not tolerate the mall today so ordered Brady's Easter outfit online.
enjoying the sunshine streaming through the windows as jeff and I putter around this afternoon. he watching basketball and me scrappin' a little.
teresa collins is on HSN tomorrow afternoon. got TIVO set to tape it.
finally listened to my BPS class from this week. all about slowing down and deliberately living each moment. this month's art challenge is very cool, but not up to it today. love the colors she used-cocoa brown, raspberry, khaki, pink and burgundy. very feminine.
so many things i should be doing today. needed a nap, but kept fighting it off all day.
love my boys. this photo is so sweet of them. picture of the layout doesn't do it justice really. this is jenni bowlin inspired-love her. just got the Look Book so thought i'd go back to her layouts. when i was challenging myself to do three or four a month w/ the kits i felt like it really got my creative juices flowing. used her basic layout and the title, but had to switch up a couple of elements. still need to add the MM mini letter/number stickers along the journalling tab w/ the date, but oh well, here it is.
still can't get my photos of the day to load up. not sure what's going on. i've had several i wanted to share so i added one or two of them to this post. i'm SO technology challenged.