August 30, 2012

a good day

I had promised to share a layout with you yesterday, but yesterday we took a little field trip to the Safari Park (which we totally still call the Wild Animal Park).  Can I say I was just a little bit tired after that?  It was, hot.  As it always is there, and I carried Sam most of the time in the Ergo, which made it a little extra hot.  I can happily report that no one got a sunburn, even mommy who usually misses a spot or two.  We saw an adorable baby elephant who was born just the day before on August 28th.

{photo courtesy of Mr. Gabe}
Absolutely precious.  We also saw the gorillas and a little baby gorilla.  He was mimicking his daddy which was again, so precious.  While we were there an old woman told me I was brave for coming to the park alone with three boys.  I thought she was brave.  She was quite advanced in her age and was using a walker.  That park is not easy to maneuver, and in this heat it only makes it more difficult.  I cheerfully told her that the older boys were very well behaved and that it is really only the baby that I had to worry about.  She just kept smiling and looking at the boys, and at Sam - he was in a good mood so he smiled back.  She was quite smitten with him I think.

We did our lessons in the afternoon (some more successfully than others) and then I sort of took the rest of the day off.  Except that I made dinner and a chocolate cake.  Okay, okay, an easy chocolate cake, but still.  Then, I was tired.

About the cake, very easy and actually very good considering.  I've made this recipe many times and it always turns out well.  I don't make the frosting though; I usually just dust the served pieces with powdered sugar.  If you ever need a last minute dessert for whatever reason, I highly recommend this recipe.  Takes about an hour from start to finish.  One more thing, I mix it in a bowl and then put it in the pan.  First, because I don't want to scratch up my pan with my whisk (even if it isn't non-stick).  Second, because this cake will stick unless you have a very good non-stick baking pan, which I do not.  You'll need to either spray your cake pan with non-stick spray, or do the whole butter and flour thing (which I never do).  Oh, and it's vegan.  So if you ever need a vegan dessert, well, there you go.  =)

I'll be back later with that layout I promised.

August 28, 2012


Yesterday was my turn to blog at Simple Stories, and as I was working on my post I realized that I hadn't shared my layout from the previous month's blogging.  So, today I thought I'd go ahead and do that, and then tomorrow I'll share my layout from yesterday.  Sound good?

I made this layout, and the card below using Take A Hike,

one of the new summer collections.  We don't go camping or do many outdoor activities, yet.  Gabe will be joining the Cub Scouts this fall so I'm sure that will change soon.  He is so excited about that, by the way.  I think he is going to enjoy being a scout.  I like this new collection because while it is definitely geared towards camping and hiking it also has a lot of basic prints in boy-friendly colors.  I've had the photo above printed for almost two years, and when I saw the colors in this collection I knew they'd be a perfect match.

Plus, Nathan is always keeping us on our toes and so the adventure title went along perfectly with that as well.

Simple Stories redesigned their cardstock stickers with this release,
so that they now include more variety of alphas along with word stickers, little tabs, labels, and tags.  I appreciate this change since I generally don't use alphabet stickers, but do love word stickers and all those other detail pieces.

Finally, I made this little outdoorsy inspired card using my Cameo.  I stamped the sentiment and embossed it with copper Zing!

I have had that Zing! in my collection for a while now and this was my first time using it.  Don't know why I waited so long, since I love the way the metallic color looks!  Might be buying some more of those.  You know, just maybe.  =)

Okay, it is time to start the day!  We started school last week and so far things are going well.  I'll have more to share about that later too.

Have a great day!

August 22, 2012

happy day

Something I get asked a lot lately is how I find time to scrapbook.  Actually, I think every scrapbooker gets asked this question.  Since Samuel's birth I have managed to find a way to fit crafting and scrapbooking into my life because it is important to me.  But still, some days in spite of my desires and best intentions, there just isn't enough time.  Over the last few months, something I have really come to enjoy is making cards.  I made this card,

using scraps from the layout I shared a couple of weeks ago.

You can make the process even quicker by using similar design elements.  Including the time it took to die-cut the butterfly, this card only took about ten minutes to complete, and now I have a happy summer card to give away to someone special.

I shared this card last week at as part of the summertime dailies.  That post will be my last one as a member of the team.  I cannot say very much about why I decided to leave, simply that I have been thinking about it for many months now.  And it was time.

August 13, 2012

a new week, and a new day

Last week was one of those weeks.  You know the ones.  Where you're counting down the days, the hours, the minutes until the weekend.  I don't know if it was the heat (it has been ridiculously hot here as of late), or the stress of the upcoming school year, or what, but I'm going to admit that it put me into a bit of a funk.  It took nearly all weekend for me to recover from it.  I don't think that it was until after Mass that I could finally lift all of those negative feelings away from myself.  And really, it is not me who did the lifting at all, it was Him.

I have been trying all summer to get back into a routine of quiet daily prayer.  It works best for me if I do it first thing in the morning.  Before I check my email, before the boys wake up, before the day gets to be hectic, normal.  This morning I read several things in my Magnificat that reminded me of something that has been on my mind quite a lot lately, the idea that we can start each day anew. 

[The One] that rules over men in justice
Is like the morning light at sunrise
on a cloudless morning,
making the greensward sparkle after rain.
2 Sm 23: 3-4

and this

The favors of the Lord are not exhausted,
his mercies are not spent;
They are renewed each morning,
so great is his faithfulness.
Lam 3: 22-23

So, I'm going to start this week afresh.  I'm going to try to start each day afresh, and let go of the worries of yesterday.  I am feeling much better this week, even though there is so much I want and need to get done this week.  I feel as though I am in a better mindset to tackle it all.

Before I go, I'll share this simple card I made recently,

I'm not always in tune with what is trendy at any given moment in scrapbooking or paper crafting.  I suppose I prefer to just do my own thing.  But, I have mentioned it before, and I'll mention it again here, I am completely smitten with doilies.  Don't know what it is...

I used some scraps left over from another project to make this card.  Even if it is a small thing, a simple card like this, it feels good to do something creative.

Until next time, blessings to you.

August 8, 2012

'tis the season

I'm pretty sure I've admitted this before, but summer is just not my favorite season.  Maybe I'll feel differently next year?  We're starting school in a couple of weeks, and I've been immersed in lesson planning and scheduling.  Feeling a bit like a new student myself, with a mixture of excitement and just a little anxiety thrown in too.  I'm hopeful for the new year, and I want to believe that with a combination of my preparation, God's grace, and a lot of prayer, we'll do okay.

The summer is winding down though, and last week with the arrival of August we celebrated this season at  There is an all-new gallery for your inspiration & here is my contribution,

I cut the doilies using my Cameo, because I am sort of in love with doilies right now. =)  In case you're interested, you can find the files here:  large doily, small doily.  And again, I used Summer Fresh from Simple Stories.  I really do love the bright, primary colors of this line.

The photos for this layout are from last summer.  I realized as I was looking for summery pictures that I hadn't scrapbooked these photos of Nathan at the strawberry farm last year.  He was almost three, and he had a better understanding of what we were supposed to be doing as opposed to the year before (meaning, he actually picked the berries instead of just eating them). These pictures make me smile, and I’m glad I finally made a page with them.

I have a couple more projects and pages I'd like to share, so I will try to be back with those soon, but, as always, no promises!  Until next time, blessings.


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