Tuesday, July 31, 2007


Hold on to your hat, Harriett! 'Cause the next few weeks are going to be CRAZY! Lots of stuff going on all of a sudden. Brady is winding up his time at summer camp and we're trying to work out visits to the grandparents before school starts. My work is moving to a new office so there's lots of excitement going on there, too. It's just crazy as summer comes to a close!

My sister and I stole away an afternoon and took Brady to the Zoo this past weekend. We had a nice time even tho' Brady kind of pooped out on us. We never did get to see the baby elephant or the giraffes. Oh, well. We did get to see the penguins and puffins and Brady rode the train lots which was what he really wanted to do. Couple photos turned out decent, I suppose. My sister, Marisa looks great, doesn't she? She's been doing Weight Watchers and I marvel at her discipline and determination. What an inspiration you are, girl!

I started a Photography class on Monday night. Unfortunately, I am convinced I need to upgrade my camera, but the good news is I don't want to upgrade a lot. Just a little more reliability and zoom. It will probably have to wait until Christmas, but we'll see. It's going to be a great class and I'm looking forward to learning alot. Also, have my class coming up on Sunday at Red Lead-canNOT wait for that!

Well, like I said, lots going on. My head was spinning at one point today as I was trying to figure out how to cram everything in the next couple of weeks. Off to bed to rest up for tomorrow. We have school supply shopping tomorrow after work. Already that time again. Enjoy the rest of the week. Looking forward to a fun, but busy weekend, too! You know what they say...

time flies whether you're having fun or not! ;)

Sunday, July 29, 2007

What's Your Story?

"So remember, every picture tells a story." -Rod Stewart

I come from a long line of storytellers. Particularly on my mother's side. It has always been important to talk about those who have gone before us, as well as our own lives. To tell our stories. Stories of hardship and joy, of loves and losses. Sharing memories both fond and bitter.

When I was a little girl, on quiet afternoons my mom would pull out our enormous family photo album and with every page turn she would tell us stories. Her story. Of how she met my dad, the circumstances surrounding our births, talking about the homes where we lived and neighbors we had known. As we grew older, she would often pull out photos of her and my dad as children and young adults and relate more of her story-what her school was like, who the bullies were, boys she had crushes on and why, what it was like to grow up in a large family during the depression. To this day, I can't see a Rose of Sharon without recalling the stories my mom would tell of how she and her sisters as little girls would pretend the frilly, luscious blooms were ballgowns for their clothespin dolls.

For years when we would travel passed the house in which my father grew up, my parents would recount what the house was like before it became known to us as, "the hairy house". In fact, we would sing each time we drove passed, "when daddy was a little boy he lived in the hairy house". Now, the house was hairy in the early 70's because it had been abandoned for a number of years and had become overgrown with ivy and weeds giving it a hairy appearance to our young eyes. And although it has long since been torn down, I'm thankful we have stories and pictures passed down to us so we can know what that house was like before it became hairy. Without those stories we would never know the house on the bluffs overlooking the river where my father spent much of his childhood was at one time beautiful surrounded by trees and full of life.

I am so grateful that my mother felt it was important to tell stories. Her story has helped to shape my own. As an adult, I have come to understand how important it is to tell your story. My scrapbooking, paper art and this blog are a part of how I tell my story. It's a way for me to share with my children who I am and what is important to me. What brings me great happiness and what causes me heartache. What my hopes and dreams are for myself and for them. I want my children to know it's important to tell their story. To understand who they are and from where they've come so they can chart a course for where they want to go and who they want to be.

Each life has great value and the story of each life creates the richness of who we are as individuals. So, what's your story? Are you telling it? I hope so, for there's no one who can tell it quite like you!

Friday, July 27, 2007

Treasure and Inspiration GALORE!

Okay, in love, I am blaming my MIL for my shopping madness lately. Starting with another trip to Red Lead today-my third in two weeks! Mind you, I'm usually lucky to get to this store three times in a year. Had to go back for a couple of reasons. The least of which, they extended their paper sale. It's incredible-most pattern paper for 39 cents. And I'm a sucker for paper-it's like fabric to a quilter. So after I filled up on inspiration and did my damage there I got a wild hair to spread my wings a little. I usually don't venture too far, but decided I wanted to get to one other shop in that area and before I stopped there pulled into the Goodwill.

I did awesome! Look at the goodies I got today. I got the child's music box (that was pristine inside-don't ya love that pink?!), the two silver trays (perfect for the stash I'm gathering for Grandma Alice's party) and the hammered silver box all for yep, $4.70. The pink basket I found at a garage sale Tammy and I pulled into last Friday night-got it and the shells and a stray silk lily of the valley bloom for a $1. We got some great stuff at those two little sales we happened to spy, BTW.

Then I did a dangerous thing for me. I headed to this little shop Tammy turned me on to called, The White Rabbit. Their store front window reads: shabby chic, cottage, garden. Right up my alley! I'd only been there once before and was dying to go back. I went on a great day-they had tons more stuff than before and I love their little bargain room. Back there I got this sweet candy box with vintage sewing notions for $5! It'll be so cute sitting out at Easter, don't ya think? And I already have plans for some of those vintage notions. I also picked up another rhinestone brooch for yep, Grandma Alice's party along with this sweet drawer painted a delicious shade of pink. You can see I've already started filling it up with stuff I'm using on my current projects. And then, as I was getting ready to leave I spied this beauty-a silver tray in a great shape and very reasonably priced. Just perfect for shells in the summer and white baby pumpkins in the fall-love it! They have great stuff and very good prices. If you are into shabby chic it's a great find.

So that's how I spent my afternoon-treasure hunting. One of my favorite things! Spurred on lately by the projects I'm working on, but it's SO relaxing, too. Looking forward to a great weekend. Headed to the Zoo tomorrow after Brady's ballgame. It's supposed to be a beautiful day. Whatever you are doing this weekend I hope it finds you relishing every relaxing moment. Enjoy!

EDITED: Another mad shopping trip impromptu this evening to Hobby Lobby & Home Goods with Tammy. I'll have to snap a photo later, but found some AWESOME goodies (one 50% off) for one of my Grandma Alice projects. SO excited-can't wait to start working on it!

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Come On Get Happy!

Okay, I'm showing my age with that title, aren't I? In fact, Tam, you probably won't know where that line comes from will you? That's really depressing. Oh, well. That's what I decided to do today-get happy. We have all just been grumps this summer at our house and I am so worn out from it. You know they say it takes more muscles to frown than to smile! Anyway, have just had enough and decided no matter what happened today I was going to be okay with it and be happy. The Seinfeld, "serenity now" philosophy, you know. TEE HEE HEE!

Anyway, nothing real new happening. Jeff has about three more weeks of being super busy at work and Brady has about 12 more days of summer camp and then a week off before school starts. Then hopefully things will calm down a bit around here. Just hasn't been the free and easy summer I was hoping for. Hoping to make up for it in the fall though.

Tammy and I have a roadtrip we're planning to OKC (Oklahoma City) to visit this FABULOUS store. Really looking forward to it. I also signed up for a class at Red Lead finally-in just two weeks! CanNOT wait for this. I love the gals who run this store-so creative and talented and laid back. Yet they get you super excited about being crafty. Love it! Tammy had a great idea for a t-shirt the other day, "don't be intimidated by my craftiness"! Too funny-we were talking about how alot of the gals who design and teach classes are a little intimidating, but we don't get that from these gals. They are so fun. Already collecting for my project-FUN, FUN, FUN!

Speaking of projects, here's a little something I've been working on. Trying to come up with different ideas for centerpieces that incorporate photos for Grandma Alice's birthday party. This started as a Making Memories photo box. I kind of went over the top as far as the budget, but I had alot of fun with this. Still need to work on the two sides that don't have photos. Next sample will be a 5x7 or 8x10 accordian type piece with photos of her grandkids w/ the theme: our crowning glory - referencing the Bible verse that says, "grandchildren are the crowning glory of the aged". Kind of taking inspiration from Becky Novacek on this one-at least w/ the theme. Anywhoo-still having fun coming up with ideas and think I'll end up doing a variety of different projects in the same style. Going to try the party hat thing next.

Are you still with me? I know I'm rambling. Think I'll download David Cassidy from ITunes and try to get a few things done around here before Jeff gets home tonight. He may faint! Jeff-not David Cassidy. :)

Been thinking alot about the little vacation Tammy and I took the kids on to Springfield, IL a couple years ago to visit the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library & Museum. Such a great place to visit and we had such a good time there. Been thinking about one of his famous quotes today,too "most people are about as happy as they make up their minds to be". Hmmmm...Abe and David Cassidy were on to something! ;)
Have a happy day!

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Otanjou-bi Omedetou Gozaimasu!

That's Happy Birthday in Japanese-In honor of my sweet husband's birthday today! Last night we met his parents and brother's family for dinner at a Japanese steakhouse. Has to be Jeff's favorite place to eat. It always makes for an entertaining meal and we had such a nice visit, too.

And finally, this is how my canvas collage turned out. I didn't end up adding too much more to it. But I'm happy w/ how it turned out. Hoping to work it in to the decorations for Grandma Alice's party in October. Had a brainstorm about some other ideas last night so now I'm on the hunt for vintage materials to do some other similiar projects.

Okay, we're off to church this morning and Red Lobster for lunch. Then I think the birthday boy wants a nap and I'm headed for Target. Sounds like a perfect day, huh?

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Chicken Soup

You know all those Chicken Soup books? I love the way the stories and antedotes make you feel warm & fuzzy-just like hot soup on a warm day. Well, today, I had chicken soup a couple times...

Flipping radio stations while driving in the car this afternoon and Rich Mullins' song, "Boy Like Me, Man Like You" came on. Man that dude could write music! Started thinking about the summer Cameron and a friend of ours saw him in concert one night here in St Louis and the very next day drove to Columbia, MO to see him again. What a fun memory. I look forward to hearing Rich play again in heaven some day. Truly our loss was heaven's gain.

I've really been enjoying working with some of the photos Jeff's mom gave me for Grandma Alice's 100th birthday party. One of my favorites is a picture of her with Jeff's grandpa. Everything about it says 1940's-the clothes, hair, everything. And I imagine that they might have been on their way out for the evening. Perhaps to a picture show or to another couple's home to play cards. Anyway, loving this photo and finally decided to try my hand at canvas collage ala Pamela Garrison. It's not quite finished yet-have to decide on a verse to stamp on it and add a couple more embellies, but here's how it's going so far. Oh, the chicken soup part you ask? Well, just getting my hands dirty-decoupaging, painting, loved mixing the colors together and all the layers of paint and vintage wallpapers. Being brave enough to try and happy enough with the results.

So, that was the Chicken Soup today for the musician and the artist in my soul. Hmmmm...hmmmm...good!

Thursday, July 05, 2007


Yeah, um, mommy forgot there was no basketball camp today due to the fourth of July. And sweet boy was NOT happy! After nearly thirty minutes of persuading him that he needed to get into the spirit of crazy sock night and wear these and then no camp. He said, "see! I looked like an idiot for nothing!" After that he was more than happy to go hit golf balls with daddy before baseball practice. Think I'll be able to get them back on him next week?!?

Holiday Hangover

What was it I said about it being so great to have a day off in the middle of the week? This morning I was rethinking that. We had such a great time yesterday, but it was SO hard getting up this morning and heading off to work. Good news is that tomorrow's already Friday. Made it a little easier to get moving. Jeff and I kept asking each other, "what day is this?". Too funny.

Here are a few photo highlights of our Fourth of July. Shout out to my brother and his wife, Julie for a great day! They recently moved "to the country" and this was the first family get together at their place since they moved. Even tho' the weather was warm (it's July in Missouri, don't ya know) the lovely breeze blowing all day made it comfortable in the shade. I enjoyed being out of doors just hanging out. My brother had every imaginable outdoor game or activity-you could ride the four wheeler, swing on the tire swing, play ladder golf (which I did!), volleyball, croquet. You name it! We also enjoyed lots of good food including homemade icecream. It just kills Jeff that my family loves to eat outside-all three meals if we have the chance. But even he enjoyed the day just relaxing in the shade. Ah! summertime and the livin' is easy!
Jeff and I even managed to take in the new Die Hard movie-"Live Free or Die Hard". All I can say is WOW! action-packed from beginning to end-literally. Bruce Willis still has it and the Apple guy was really good in it, too. If you haven't seen it you really should-it's the quintessential summer flick.

Well, busy night tonight. Brady has basketball clinic and his first baseball practice overlapping each other. Fortunately, they're both at the Y. Tonight is crazy sock night at basketball. Let's see if we can get Brady to be wild 'n crazy!

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Happy 4th of July!

Going to try and have an unplugged holiday tomorrow so wanted to send out my greetings to everyone ahead of time for a festive Fourth. We're heading out to my brother's house in the afternoon. Hoping to catch the local parade in the morning and maybe even a movie tomorrow evening. We'll see what the day brings. Just looking forward to a day off in the middle of the week. Brady is most looking forward to sleeping in and cinnamon rolls and of course, going to cousin Matt's house!

Hope your day brings fun and relaxation with family and friends. We're especially grateful for those men and women of our armed forces who protect our freedoms at home and abroad. Thank you for your dedication and sacrifice. Take a moment to recognize them and the wisdom and forethought of our founding fathers more than 200 years ago in establishing the documents that govern our country, The Constitution and The Bill of Rights. Caught Brady singing this along with a commercial earlier in the week.

My country 'tis of Thee,
Sweet Land of Liberty of thee I sing.
Land where my fathers died,
Land of the pilgrim's pride,
From every mountainside, let FREEDOM RING.

Yes, let FREEDOM RING! Have a great Independence Day!

Monday, July 02, 2007

Technology-my new BF

Well, actually Technology and I have a very LOVE-HATE relationship. After nearly three hours on the phone with tech support from Texas to India, we are officially wireless. Can you hear the chorus of angels!?! OMG! What a nightmare. But whatever the gal from HP in India did it worked and we are up and running. In fact, I am entering this while sitting in my Edith chair. The only downfall is our laptop is quite big (17 in screen) so it is rather heavy, but after what I've been through to get this far I'll take it!

And all so that Brady can access the internet for his Wii game system and play the new Pokemon Battle something or another. But right now it isn't working correctly and he's having a meltdown. So, duty calls. I'll check in later. Just wanted to share my excitement about this seemingly monumental accomplishment! :)

BTW, does that thing look very Robbie the Robot or is it just me?