Monday, April 30, 2007

Global warming is real...

...and we are feeling it now in South Dakota!

Ya know, it would be certainly be nice to have a few weeks or even a month or so of moderate spring temps (in the mid-60's) each spring so that we could have the money-saving benefit of not having to run the heat or the air. But, no, of course not. We simply MUST go from 40 degrees and below to 90 degrees and above in a matter of days!

Enough with the complaining though...this weekend was simply beautiful. We reached 90 degrees yesterday and Kaitlin and I got in some good 'outdoors' time between picking up sticks, mowing the lawn, taking off on an outdoor photo excursion and visiting the local duck pond and park.

(A side note on - I recently had a reader leave a comment asking about my experience with, but her profile was not public so could not respond...hopefully she will come back and read this. I haven't been using long...just a few months or so, but I really like it. It is easy to create and embed slide shows. And best of's free!! I've experimented with a few different services that are similar and so far, is my favorite.)

Luckily, we have a few young children in our neighborhood that she enjoys playing with...two boys live directly behind us and two girls a couple houses up the street. Right next door to us is a large family, but their children are all a little older and generally don't tolerate Kaitlin's presence for very long...unfortunately, it is quite hard to explain to a 4 1/2 year why older kids don't always like to play with little kids...her feelings were quite hurt the other evening when they told her to go back in her yard...poor kid. Unfortunately, they have a trampoline, a pool and are often outside which always makes her want to be over there. Luckily, the parents are quite understanding and are happy to let her have a 'jump' on their trampoline when the bigger kids aren't using it (it gets a bit too rough for her then). I'll have to get some pics of that one of these days...she could jump on that thing forever!

So, with the warm weather comes a VERY CRABBY morning girl it seems! The dilemma, of course, is that it is light and warm longer into the evening and guess who doesn't want to come inside and CERTAINLY isn't ready to go to bed at the usual 8:30 p.m. or so. The last two nights, she has been up until 9:30 - 10 p.m. NOT GOOD! For that matter, she's getting pretty tired then, too, because she's overtired and has that much harder of a time settling down. Hopefully, we will get on a more acceptable track soon...I can only be growled and grunted at and hear "FINE!" while doing what she was asked for the 20th time with an air of total insolence so many times at 7 a.m. in the morning before I crack!

So, before spring barely even had a chance to show its face, summer seems to be here and it's looking like it's going to be a busy one!

Global warming is real...SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Sunday Spur for Scrapbookers #14 - Quotes on Creativity

There are so many different views of creativity.

I read a book not too long again called Caffeine for the Creative Mind: 250 Exercises to Wake Up Your Brain. It included interviews with several successful designers and several shared their take on creativity.

“You are a creative. ‘What’s a creative?” you ask. In its purest form, a ‘creative’ is anyone who creates. Anything. If you make something, you are a creative.” from the Introduction of ‘Caffeine for the Creative Mind’ by Stefan Mumaw and Wendy Lee Oldfield

“Creativity, to me, is the ability to have the eyes of a child-eyes of wonder, eyes of possibility-throughout your entire life. And then be able to use that creative insight or vision or ability to see things, to solve problems or to affect something for a more positive outcome.” Kevin Carroll

“Creativity means producing something original which has value to others because it makes them laugh, cry or think.” Brian Sack

“Animation and illustration deal heavily in story. Animation tells a story across a linear timeline, while illustration implies a story by offer a view of a single moment in time. Of the two, implying a story with that single image is much more challenging and rewarding when you get it right. It also allows more participation from the
viewer, since a single image can be interpreted in many ways.” Mike Dietz

“Creativity, by definition, is simply the ability to create. But what we’re really talking about is expressing ourselves through original thoughts and ideas, arriving at unique solutions to problems by approaching those problems in fresh, unexpected ways. Creativity, and how to harness it, is an elusive subject. It comes from deep inside you and is molded by the sum of your life experiences, so the process is very personal and unique. It resides most powerfully in our subconscious, which means to best tap into it we have to relinquish conscious control over the process-something some people have a difficult time with. You have to trust the process, let it come to you. Just make sure you have a pencil and paper nearby, because sometimes the best ideas can be the most fleeting.” Mike Dietz

“You have to make boundaries. You have to make decisions about what you do and don’t do, you have to know what balance means to you. To some people, a balanced life means working twenty hours a week and playing twenty hours a week. Some people have families, some people have children, so it’s all a matter of priorities and have the time you want to allocate to each activity in your life. Setting boundaries on things is really important-boundaries like how often you check your email, how late you work, what time you stop answering the phone, what days you work or don’t work, how many vacations you take a year, what you do to cultivate your creativity,
what do you do to recharge and inspire yourself.” Peleg Top on the freeing power of boundaries in balance

“Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist when you grow up.” Pablo Picasso (He wasn't interviewed, obviously, but this quote was included in the book as well.)

So, which is your favorite quote on creativity. Or, do you know of another quote on creativity that really speaks to you? You could even take your favorite quote on creativity and use it on a layout about your craft. Either way, let us know in a comment here.
Sunday Spur for Scrapbookers #14 - Quotes on CreativitySocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Friday, April 27, 2007

The art of compromise...

So, my hubby got another boat. I'm not even really crazy about the first boat (getting stranded on the Missouri in a boat that doesn't want to stay running isn't exactly my idea of fun, but that's a story for another day) and now he has ANOTHER boat. It's a small one - a 'Jon boat', I think he called it. Evidently, that's supposed to be some sort of consolation to me according to him.

Of course, I was not consulted in the decision to purchase another boat. One day last weekend, he simply said, "I'm going to look at a boat." And guess what - he came home with a boat.

And now it's in our driveway.

And, of course, he couldn't possibly leave any motorized vehicle he purchases in operating order. NO, of course not. He simple MUST dismantle the entire thing down to the bare metal in order to 'improve' it. This isn't the real story, either. Bare with me...I'm getting to it.

So, last night, Kaitlin and Justin were working on the said boat and Kaitlin was vacuuming out the remnants of Styrofoam insulation left on the inside of the boat after taking the floor, side panels and majority of the insulation out. (I wasn't kidding when I said he has to COMPLETELY dismantle EVERYTHING!) He had also explained to Kaitlin that they would be putting new pink insulation (At which point Kaitlin interjected that purple would be a prettier choice.) back into the boat and after it was all put back together, his friend Jason would come over and they would paint it green, maybe which Kaitlin scrunched her nose.

"I think that you should paint it pink, Dad. And purple, and blue, and red, and orange...Dad, you could have a rainbow boat!" Justin didn't agree.

Later, after having given Kaitlin a bath and she was getting ready for bed, Justin decided they should discuss what to call this boat. A few days ago, Kaitlin had suggested that we call this boat "Daddy's UGGLY boat" (the 'g' is pronounced twice for good measure) to go along with "Daddy's UGGLY van" (his mid-80's rust bucket used mainly for getting back and forth to work), but evidently, he did not feel that that name would do.

The following conversation ensued:

"So, what do you think we should call this new boat."
Kaitlin thought for a moment. "How 'bout 'The Camouflage Boat'?"
"How about 'Twig II'?" (Justin's first boat is named "Twig." Again, a story for another day.)
"I don't think so, Dad."

So, they went back and forth like this between "The Camouflage Boat" and "Twig II" for a few rounds and finally, it was Kaitlin who said...

"How 'bout this, Dad? How 'bout we call it 'The Camouflage Twig II Boat' and then we BOTH get to call it what we want to call it?"

There's nothing like hearing a 4 year-old become fed up with an 'adult' who's unwilling to give in and offer a solution through compromise!

"Compromise is an art form that successful leaders have mastered. The key is understanding that you're not giving up or giving in - you're just seeking balance." Barton Goldsmith
I think I may just have a little 'leader' on my hands. :-)
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Thursday, April 26, 2007

What's your visual DNA...

Swiped this cool website through Jessica Sprague's blog, who swiped it from her friend Michelle's blog, who swiped it from her friend Judi's blog. Hey, I guess us scrapper's are all just a bunch of swipers, but at least we give each other credit!! (I also seem to have the sound of Dora, the Explorer going through my head right now saying, "Swiper, NO SWIPING!" Can you tell I have a young daughter?!)

ANYWAY, this website is so cool. It takes you through a series of photos for which you choose the one that most appeals to you based on the topic (i.e. 'My Treat', 'My Freedom', 'That's Gross', etc.) and it develops your 'Visual DNA'. VERY COOL! Here's mine:

Of course, I think some of my choices were from the 'ideal' version of my life instead of the 'real life' version of my life (i.e. notice two of my choices involved passports and I've barely made it outside the Midwest in my entire life), but maybe someday I'll be able to live more of my dreams.

I also added this link to my 'Inspiration Resources' page.

Now, go find out your visual DNA...don't forget to come back and link to me.
What's your visual DNA...SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

A pennies worth of history...

Here's a fun website where you can view "Penny Postcards" (postcards from the early 1900's that cost $.01 to send) from your state...maybe even your own hometown. There's only one from mine - Tabor, SD. It is and always has been a pretty small town. Here's what the main street looked like in the early 20th century...

Obviously, the bigger the city, the more postcards you'll find. This could be fun to use in some heritage scrapping.

A pennies worth of history...SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Sunday Spur for Scrapbookers #13 - HGTV Color Inspired

It is no surprise that fashion can be a huge inspiration for many things in our lives. According to HGTV, it can be a great source of inspiration for home decorating and while I agree, I think it can be an even greater resource for inspiration in scrapbooking. Recently, the decorating section of HGTV's website featured a piece on the latest colors to hit the fashion runway for Spring 2007. Here are three of the top trendy colors:

Grey - The New Neutral
Blue - The Life Aquatic
Yellow - A Happy Accent
Hmmm...I'm seeing a layout with a grey (the new neutral) cardsock foundation with accents of dusty blue and buttery yellow.

What creation are you invisioning? See what you can come up with on this challenge and leave a link to your creation.

Sunday Spur for Scrapbookers #13 - HGTV Color InspiredSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Saturday, April 21, 2007

A Review of "Real Women Scrap" by Tasra Dawson

A review of Real Women Scrap by Tarsa Dawson.

Amazon Description:
Real Women Scrap offers guidance for transformative scrapbooking and creative living. Filled with practical tips, inspiring stories, and insightful strategies, this life-changing guide shows readers how to use key elements in scrapbooking to reconnect with themselves. Drawing parallels between the lessons of the scrapbook page and the lessons of living, author Tasra Dawson connects the wisdom of a beloved pastime with timeless principles for improving busy women's lives.


This is a really wonderful book!! If you need any justification as to why you scrap, this will certainly give it to you. Even if you don't, you will be amazed by the parallel's the author draws between the basic elements of this 'hobby' and the 'real issues' in everyday life - I sure was. It was enlightening and uplifting.


A Review of "Real Women Scrap" by Tasra DawsonSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Friday, April 20, 2007

Sanjaya FINALLY got the boot!

I know I'm not sharing any 'new' news here, but I am just so happy that Sanjaya finally got the boot. My work week was so busy, I wasn't even able to watch and inadvertantly found out yesterday that he was the one to go on Wednesday night...honestly, I hadn't even thought to check because I wasn't getting so used to (and disgruntled by) the fact that he kept making it through somehow. But here it's the proof...he really is gone:

Usually, there is a slight pause in the crowd's reaction...maybe even some boo's from those who liked the singer sent home. But that night, there were certainly no boos, were there? The crowd literally erupted with applause...I guess I wasn't the only one that thought Sanjaya's trip home was LONG past due.
Sanjaya FINALLY got the boot!SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

This is why I don't like to watch the news...

My husband loves to watch all those dooms day programs on Discovery. You know the ones...they're always about the next ice age, the meteorite that going to obliterate earth, or the next biblical flood. He makes fun of me because I don't like to watch them. But who really wants to think about those things and how they might effect us (or our poor children) sometime in the future?? I sure don't.

But Mother Nature's wrath is one thing...the wrath of one human against another (or many) is another. These are the things that make me not want to even watch the local news anymore:

First, there was our local story on the trial of Daphne Wright who killed another woman and dismembered her with a chain saw (over a girlfriend). She could have been the first woman on death row in South Dakota, but today jurors sentenced her to life in prison.

Last week, a teen (Nicole Marie Beecroft) from our neighboring state of Minnesota was charged with killing her newborn child by stabbing it 135 times after giving birth in her home.

And, then, we have the Virginia Tech shooting.

I just don't understand what could possibly motivate anyone to do such heinous things...I don't even know what else to say...
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Tuesday, April 17, 2007

The park is farther than you think...

Kaitlin has been experiencing some serious spring fever for several weeks now...just itching to get outside and play, asking to go to the park and such. Well, yesterday, with our beautiful, finally-like-spring weather, I decided we'd walk to the park after I got home from work. I had assumed we'd bring out the stroller and Kaitlin would 'enjoy the ride'. But, no, she decided that she was going to ride her little red Radio Flyer tricycle to the park.

"Are you sure, honey? I think the park is farther than you think." Tripp park is about a 1/2 mile from our house.

"Yup...I want to ride my bike," she insisted.

Well, she made it...slowly...I definitely wasn't going to break a sweat keeping up with her. I might have broke a sweat trying to keep her toward the side of the road, though, as there are not sidewalks to use along all the streets on the way to the park. She played for about 20 minutes and then we headed back home and she rode all the way again...but she was pretty tired by the end of it and it took a little coaxing to keep her on the bike the last block or so.

"I think next time we'll take the stroller."

She said, "I think that's a VERY good idea, Mom."

I just savor the moments when she agrees with me!
The park is farther than you think...SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Monday, April 16, 2007

A birthday celebration and Easter #2

Steve, Kristi and the boys came down for a 'second Easter' on Saturday and also to celebrate Alex's fourth birthday with us. It is so hard to believe that he could be four years old already! He is talking so much more and better...and is such a 'lovey' little boy. Just a sweetheart!

He definitely gets the 'funny' award for the day. When Kaitlin and I first arrived, he came running up to me and asked, "Are you my cousin?"

"No, I'm your Aunt," I said.

"Cool. Is she your cousin?" He was gesturing towards my sister, Lynn.

"No, she's my sister."

"Cool. Is she my cousin?" This time he pointed at Kaitlin.

Finally, he got one right! "Yes, she's your cousin."

All he said was "Cool." and off he ran. I think "Cool." must be his favorite word right now!!

It was a great day. The weather was absolutely wonderful and the kids got to enjoy a huge outdoor Easter egg hunt. We put out A LOT of eggs and I think they were actually pretty tired by the time they found them all. Here are some pictures. Just click on the pic to advance to the next picture.

Dad brought out the four wheeler after the hunt and Jamison, Alex and Kaitlin all got several turns. They had a lot of fun together that day!

As you can see, I also had some fun playing with a few of these photos in my editing software. I think they look pretty cool in sepia tone. I really like to shots of Kaitlin with my Dad's 'Frontier Mills' hat on! How cute!

On Sunday, Kaitlin & I went to church and out to lunch with Mom & Dad and then went home and we all did some cleaning up during the afternoon. The house was a pit. At about 5 p.m., we'd all had enough, so Justin & I sat down to watch some movies.

We watched "The Departed" first and although it was a good movie, I'm glad Kaitlin decided she wanted to play in her room for a good while because the language was awful. If it wouldn't have been for that, I would have said it was a great movie.

After that we watched "Goal" - a movie about a young illegal immigrant living in Los Angeles that travels to England to pursue his dream of playing competitive soccer (or 'football' as they call it there). That was actually a VERY good movie. I liked it a lot...

And then came Monday and it was back to work...
A birthday celebration and Easter #2SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Sunday Spur for Scrapbookers #12 - A Call to Give

This week's Sunday Spur is definitely something a little is a challenge to extend your support and compassion to a fellow scrapper in need.

I recently found out about a fellow scrapper whose 12-year old son has been diagnosed with cancer...terminal cancer. Evidently, the doctors believe that they have done all that they can do. This is just so inexplicably sad.

Read Jen's announcement on Two Peas here.

If you are a return reader, you know that I recently had a cousin pass away from cancer. She was young...only 46 years old...with two grown daughters, but also a young daughter still at home (about 10 years old). And as devastating as it was for her and all of her family, she had a VERY strong faith, even up to the very end, and did live a fulfilling and happy life.

As a mother, I cannot even fathom facing this grim reality for my child...ANY CHILD. How do explain such a thing to a child? Not to mention the fact that no parent should ever have to outlive their child!

Another scrapper (who doesn't even 'know' Jen) has started a blog to organize a benefit for Jen and her family. You can visit the link here.

If you are able, give. Give a $1...for sure, it will add up! Jen has responded to the outpouring of support on her blog in the April 12th entry with awe and gratitude. You can also she a picture of her son, Joey, there. If you are unable to give monetarily...leave her a promise of prayer and a wish of hope by leaving her a comment to her post or in the Two Peas message board. Or even better, do both!

And, if you're a parent, hug your children a little tighter every time you have the chance.
Sunday Spur for Scrapbookers #12 - A Call to GiveSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Saturday, April 14, 2007

She's a Dancing Queen

I recently started fiddling around with the video function on my digital camera recently and have something to share with you that I hope you will enjoy!

It is my sister, Lynn, that told her to "shake it." Several things run through my mind as I watch this clip:

  • She's certainly fit right during the trip to Hawaii that she keeps asking for (I don't really know where this interest in Hawaii came from...her other destination of choice is Canada...hmmmm...Canada or Hawaii).
  • Evidently saying "Hula, hula, hula" enhances this native dance.
  • Either we have been watching entirely too much "Dancing with the Stars"...or not enough!
  • And last, but not least...boy, I wish my butt was that cute when I 'shook it'!!
She's a Dancing QueenSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Friday, April 13, 2007


I am soooo excited! I got a publication request from Simple Scrapbooks today!! It is for a layout called "Under Surveillance" about Kaitlin's first day of preschool last fall and how I stalked her school bus to and from school (black and white photos and all!) is a fun layout and am so honored that they have requested it. It will be in featured in a special issue called "Scrapbook Play!" and is scheduled to come out in September.

It had been nearly six months since my last request (which was from Memory Makers) and although I always try to remind myself just how competitive this market is and how many thousands of great submissions the mags must get for every call, I was still starting to get a little discouraged.

So, I guess this is my positive confidence JOLT, I guess! It makes me want to go do some more scrappin' right now!!
WHOOOOHOOOOO!!SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Thursday, April 12, 2007

New Scrapblog...St. Patty's Day Kaitlin

Here's a new Scrapblog I made for some pics I took of Kaitlin on St. Patty's Day...

New Scrapblog...St. Patty's Day KaitlinSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

A quote to ponder...

Came across this African proverb the other day in a piece that I had to read for work about the Catholic Tradition...

"I am because you are."

This really struck a cord with me. I am not sure exactly what the literal African meaning is, so might have to do some research on that.

I am interested on how others might interpret this quote, especially mothers (or fathers). Let me know what you think...
A quote to ponder...SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Monday, April 9, 2007

One busy Easter leads to one tired kid...

We had a nice Easter.

We had a little bit of Easter on Sunday with egg this pic.

Look you see anything 'wrong' with this picture?? Hmmm...I don't think that boiled eggs are supposed to float, are they? We realized right away that I must not have boiled them long enough, but do you think an impatient daughter and father would let me put them back on for awhile? Heck one's really going to eat them anyway!

Sunday started off by Kaitlin finding the loot that Mom (oh, yes, I mean the Easter Bunny) left just inside the front door. She was quite excited! Her favorite items were the fancy lavender play dress complete with white satin gloves ("Just like Cinderella!!" she said.) and flower and pearl headpiece and the movie "Charlotte's Web." She also got another outfit (embroidered jeans, t-shirt and pullover) and a little bit of candy.

Then, later in the morning, we headed out to Grandpa Joe & Grandma Sue's (aka "Grandma with the brown hair") - my parent's house for dinner. Kaitlin's cousins, Nick, Emily & Rachel were there, so she had a lot of fun playing with them. She also got a little 'quality' time in with her Uncle Lee and Aunt Lynnie.

Of course, we all ate way to much, but that goes with the territory of holidays, right? After dinner, we all sat down (because we could all hardly move anyway) and watched "Gridiron Gang." GOOD movie...liked it a lot.

This took us into mid-afternoon and it was time to head over to Justin's parent's house - Grandpa Rahn and Grandma Ruth (aka "Grandma with the yellow hair"). Shortly after arrival, we were sent off on an adults Easter Egg hunt with photos clues from all over town...Ruth loves this stuff!! It was pretty fun, even though Justin's brother left without full instructions and ended up stealing some of our eggs!

By the time we got back to the house, Kaitlin's cousins (first, once-removed, I think it would be) Grant and Lincoln were there and it was time for a kids-only egg hunt. There were eggs all over the yard and they had a ball finding them all!

Kaitlin is a pretty good egg-finder!

Grant & Kaitlin show off their stash!

Did you see him?? There went the Easter Bunny!!

Then, we ate some more (of course) and spent the evening visiting...a nice day!

However, Kaitlin was a bit OVER-tired by the time we made it home and she was just a bit cranky when it came time to put the jammies on. She was like, "Don't touch me, don't talk to me, but don't you dare leave the room." She's very particular when she hits this stage and tiredness. She had a hard time staying asleep for the night, too, which led to a little bit of rocking. Boy, haven't had to do that in a while.

One busy Easter leads to one tired kid...SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Photo Contest at Serendipity Kits...

I entered the following pictures in the April 2007 Photo Contest over at Serendipitiy Kits.


St. Patty's Day Kaitlin and Steely Kaitlin made it into the top 15 for voting. If you like, please head on over to view the entries and then go here to vote for you favorite...and if you like mine best and vote for me - even better! :-) Voting starts today (the 9th) and runs through the 11th. The winner gets a goodie box from SK. Gotta love goodies!!

Have a great Monday!

Photo Contest at Serendipity Kits...SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Saturday, April 7, 2007

Sunday Spur for Scrapbookers #11 - Scrapblog

In light of Easter tomorrow and a day full of food and family, I am posting this week's Sunday Spur a little early...

This has been my dilemma...with the rise of scrapper's blogs, online galleries, etc., more and more publishers have been requiring that scrapbook layouts submitted for publication be 'never-before-seen'. In other words, not posted in these online formats. I can understand their point of view...why would people subscribe to their magazines or buy their books if all the layouts can be seen for free elsewhere? Still, this has always been difficult for me because sharing is half the fun of the creative process.

However, it's usually really about the pictures and I think I have found the perfect solution for my conundrum! It's called Scrapblog and it is an online service that allows you to create a 'photo scrapbook' of sorts with ease. They actaully just went live with a 'new and improved' version which is a lot of fun. They are still working out a few bugs and are very receptive to sugesstions, etc. Actually, I did have a little trouble getting my slideshow embedded in this entry today, so I emailed them...not expecting to get a response until at least Monday. Well, I went back and forth with a guy named Alex several times until we got it figured out (it was a Saturday, mind you). That's what I call customer service!

It will allow me to still share my photos (and actually sooner as sometimes I don't actually get them scrapped until months after they are taken) and I won't have to risk not getting a publication request because I have already posted my layout on my blog or other gallery.

That said, I will certainly still post my layouts if I don't plan on submitting them for publication or have and they haven't been called in or I just get tired of all the rejection!! :-) There are just so many GREAT scrappers out there, it really is a competitive arena.

Here's one I put together in about 20 minutes (my first time creating one, so I think it could be done even quicker as one gets used to the program) of a photo shoot of Kaitlin back in these pics!

Obviously, this is a little small to read the journaling, so if you want, you can click on full screen to get a better view. If you click on slideshow, you'll even get to listen to some lovely music while you view!

Now for your Sunday challenge:
Create your own ScrapBlog and when you're done, put a link in a comment here so we can check it out. Happy ScrapBlogging!!
Sunday Spur for Scrapbookers #11 - ScrapblogSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Friday, April 6, 2007

A tag from the Sprague Lab...

Today's entry was inspired by Jessica Sprague's blog. She challenged her reader's to list the top 10 things that make you happy right now...

My list:

*Three-day weekends!! Whoo-hoo!


*My new found love of Bloglines...making it so much easier to follow my favorite blogs all in one place - it even has a nifty little 'notifier' at the bottom of your screen that tells you when new content is available.

*The new Daisy D's rub ons I have on order from A Peek into Yesterday.

*Getting a great picture.

*The creative imaginations paper also coming with my Peek order...

*My computer! Email, blogs, photoshop, online scrapbook shopping...oh my!

*Computer Tricks for Scrapbookers Book also coming in the order from Peek. (I'm not just saying this 'cause it's your creation, Jessica! Although I'm a paper scrapper, I use my computer all the time for titles, journaling and more and I KNOW you will give me some great new ideas in this special issue!)

*That I've gotten back on the treadmill...I've been walking anywhere from 30-90 minutes a day for the past week. I've been getting up to do a 1/2 hour before work everyday and then walk again in the evening if possible. Getting the TV downstairs (in front of the treadmill) has REALLY helped. Now I don't have to count ceiling tiles anymore...

*Finishing a scrapbook page. I have one down so far today...hope to do 2-3 more.
TAG - your turn...what's your TOP 10??
A tag from the Sprague Lab...SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Thursday, April 5, 2007

A Review of Quick and Easy Scrapbook Styles by Memory Makers

A review of Quick and Easy Scrapbook Styles by Memory Makers.

Amazon Description:
*Features a range of favorite scrapbooking styles
*Includes helpful sidebars that explain techniques and shortcuts

Quick and easy scrapbook pages really can be full of character and pizzazz. In Quick & Easy Scrapbook
Styles, readers will learn the tricks and techniques for making quick scrapbook pages in six popular and time-tested styles:

* Graphic-clean and simple graphic design inspired layouts
* Romantic-including Shabby Chic and bohemian
* Fun and Funky-bold and bright freestyle layouts
* Distressed-worn, grungy and a little country
* Classic-traditional scrapbook page styles

Readers will also find inspirational artwork from some of Memory Maker’s most talented commissioned artists as well as helpful sidebars that explain techniques and shortcuts. With this fun guide scrapbookers of all tastes and skill levels can make their own quick and easy pages.

I am always intrigued by the books the label styles in this way. I am aware that there are some distinct styles; however, I think that any scrapper who has been scrapping for any length of time has experimented at least a little in all styles and if they haven't, they should give it a try. Books like this are great tools to help you hone in on the principles and elements of your favorite style(s) and/or to step beyond the boundaries of your 'comfort zone' to try other styles of scrapbooking.

A Review of Quick and Easy Scrapbook Styles by Memory MakersSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Tuesday, April 3, 2007

Lots of randomness for this post...

First, how 'bout this weather? Mother Nature isn't playing nice. At least not in southeastern South Dakota. A week ago or so we were basking in the seemingly springlike sunny and upper-sixty degree weather and today it felt like winter all over again...a high around thirty and a bitterly cold wind. I even saw a few snowflakes fluttering around on my way back to work at lunchtime. The forecast doesn't look much better either. We'll be lucky to break 40 degrees this week it seems. Well, she does always have to have the last word I guess. I just can't wait till spring is here to stay!

Second, got my weekly dose of American Idol tonight...however, I'm finding myself less and less interested this year. I think it's largely due to my frustration that Sanjaya is still in the game. I guess we'll see what happens tomorrow night. Also been watching the new season of Dancing with the stars here and there. I don't really have any favorites (yet), but it's just fun to watch and I get just as much of a kick out of watching Kaitlin dance around the living room trying to mimic the dancers movements. It really is quite comical. The main highlight of tonight's show was that it featured Josh Groban and I definitely wanted to see that, which leads into...

#3 - I found out that Josh Groban is coming to Omaha in August this year, so am definitely making plans to see him in concert this time. He was in Sioux City in February '06 and I have been regretting not going then. This is one of my favorite songs he has out right now.

I think he would be so absolutely amazing to see/hear in real life. Can't wait for August to get here now!!

Fourth, haven't been taken as many pics lately as I would like, but I did get a closeup of Kaitlin's eyes last week and did a little 'fiddlin' with it in Photoshop. What do you think?
No, her eyes aren't really blue. She kind of got stuck with the hazel eyes that both her dad and I have. They really are quite pretty, but their color never seems to show up that well in pics. Maybe I just haven't got the shot right yet. In the meantime, between contacts and technology, no one has to be limited to the eye color they were born with, now do they?
Well, I guess that about it for's way past my bedtime!
Lots of randomness for this post...SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Sunday, April 1, 2007

Sunday Spur for Scrapbookers #10 - Photo Idea Index

Photography is the basis of all scrapbooking. Have you thought about trying to improve you photography or are you looking for some new ideas of what to photograph to bring your pages to life? If so, then here's a great book for you!

A review of Photo Idea Index by Jim Krause.

Amazon Description:
From Jim Krause comes the fifth book in the popular Index series: Photo Idea Index.

This innovative guide:
-Provides designers with the information they need to take creative photographs, explore different digital manipulations, and use them in real-world design applications
-Shares the basics of technical information, then provides a wealth of inspiration, making this both a "what if" book and a "how to" book
-Explores low-cost and do-it-yourself ways to create unusual effects
-Speaks to designers' desires to use their own photos rather than costly stock photography

Full of out-of-the-ordinary ideas, this guide offers the trademark mix of inspiration and instruction that have made the previous books in the series a creative success.

This is such a FUN book! While it is not specifically geared to the scrapbooker (more to designers), I still found it highly inspirational. I have been scrapping for about five years now with my main subject having always been my daughter. While there is absolutely nothing wrong with that (she will always be my 'main' focus, I'm sure), I have found myself wanting to scrap more of the 'everyday' as a way to record our lives for future generations to (hoepfully) enjoy. With that comes photographing our environment and the items/objects within it. This book offers some great ideas and inspiration and I LOVE the fact that the author is careful to include that most of the pictures in the book can be (and were) taken with a non-SLR camera...this is important to me because I don't have one and probably won't be able to afford one anytime soon. It's nice to see examples of great pictures taken by a point-and-shoot.

4 1/2 STARS
Sunday Spur for Scrapbookers #10 - Photo Idea IndexSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend