Wednesday, October 31, 2007

5 Little Pumkpins Sitting on a Fence

The perfect little song for a 5-year-old to sing on Halloween...complete with artwork!

5 Little Pumpkins
5 little pumpkins sitting on a fence.
The first one said, "Oh my, it's getting late!"
The second one said, "There are witches in the air!"
The third one said, "Well we don't care!"
The fourth one said, "Let's run and run and run!"
The fifth one said, "I'm ready for some fun!"
Whoo-ooo went the wind
And out went the light
And the five little pumpkins rolled out of sight!

Artwork by Kaitlin

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Tuesday, October 30, 2007

A Wicked...Silly...Sweet Little Witch

It's revealed! Kaitlin is going to be a WITCH for Halloween this year.

After five years of sweetness - a ladybug, a duck (twice), Dorothy (from the Wizard of Oz), and a purple Carebear - Kaitlin is finally going to be something 'traditionally' Halloweenish!! I am quite excited to be FINALLY able to do a Halloween layout in orange and black...and a little green!

It took two outings to get these pictures. We went out Sunday afternoon and Kaitlin was decidedly NOT in the mood. This was the only picture salvaged from the shoot:

But I've waited way too long for this to be satisfied with one measly little picture to document the event! No, we went out and tried again. Kaitlin was still not 'feeling it', but I was determined. So, out of about a hundred shots these are the ones that made the cut.

A sweet, if somewhat cheesy, witch.

What's a witch without a brew? Some leaves will do...and a little frog, too.

A definite favorite...love closeups! Yes...she's got mascara on. She insisted that the girl on the costume packaging had some on, so she had to have some too.

Hold your hat...she's cooking up something powerful!

Another favorite...love the composition of this shot. And her look is priceless, too!

Here...she's had enough...I'm lucky I didn't turn into a frog from that look.

Off to carve some pumpkins...

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Monday, October 29, 2007

Whirlwind Weekend...

This weekend sure went quickly! I spent Friday night and Saturday morning getting ready for my first MemoryWorks party and the rest of the day just FLEW by!

I had a lot of fun at my party and I hope my guests did, too. Sales were even better than I expected and one of my guests wants to host a party sometime next month...also unexpected, but wonderful!

Just waiting to finalize a few things and then will be submitting my first party order. I can't wait! I don't think my sister can either as she is benefiting from the hostess credits on this one and is looking at $35 - $40 worth of FREE product!! Can't beat that...boy, I wish the consultant could also be the hostess! :-)

Sunday we didn't do much of anything. Justin had been out playing lumberjack most of Saturday, so he wasn't feeling very ambitious either.

We did get Kaitlin into her Halloween costume and go out to take some pictures later in the afternoon, but between some nasty sun spots and an uncooperative little girl, I didn't get much...maybe one picture out of the bunch. We're going to go out today after I pick up Kaitlin and give it one more go and see if we can come of with something a little better.

Notice I didn't disclose what Kaitlin's costume is? That's because I'm hoping to let the pictures do the talking...wish us luck!
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Friday, October 26, 2007

Five on Friday...a New URL...a New Business

Five on Friday

Would you rather...
1: eat nothing but chocolate or go without chocolate for the rest of your life? go without
2: stub your toe or get a paper cut? stub my toe
3: write the news or make the news? make the news (but only in a good way)
4: lose 10 pounds or gain 10 IQ points? lose 10 pounds
5: wear a costume to work or wear normal clothes to a Halloween party? wear a costume to work (Five on Friday Meme Website)

New URL

Did you notice the new URL? Making some changes and decided to use a custom URL. Don't worry...if you have your reader or bookmark set to the old one (http://jillmarie7276.blogspot.com/), you'll still be forwarded right here, so you won't miss a thing.

New Business

No, I'm not quitting my day job, but I do have a new side business. (As if I needed something else to fill my time with!) I am now an Independent Consultant for MemoryWorks, a direct sales scrapbooking company.

As some other consultants have done, I decided to register my own business name (A Matter of Memories...hence the new url) if I would at some point sell my own handmade items and/or host crops/classes for a fee. At this point, that's a VERY BIG IF...there are just not enough hours in the day, you know, but still wanted to have that option open from the start. We'll see what comes of it.

My consultant website is online, but still in progress, so be kind, but definitely head on over, check it out and let me know what you think of the product lines that MemoryWorks has to offer. I know that many of the manufacturers they carry have been on my favorites list for a couple years now.
If you think that you might be interested in ordering at some point, go ahead and create a username and password by clicking on the "Start Here" on the upper right (below my name and contact information). If you have any questions at all, please don't hesitate to contact me.

I am having my very first MemoryWorks party tomorrow at my house and must admit I am a little nervous about it. I am very excited to present the products and hope my attendees have a great time! I'm sure I'll have more to share on this afterwards. Wish me luck!
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Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Review: That's Life by Nic Howard

Amazon Description:
This book's unique day-planner format, and light-hearted, quirky voice will set it apart from other scrapbooking titles.

With its fresh, humorous approach to the seemingly mundane, That's Life offers scrapbookers insightful ways to depict their everyday lives through their
art. Divided into chapters dedicated to each day of the week, this day-planner-inspired format offers up endearing anecdotes, unique prompts, and charming ideas as well as example pages that will inspire the reader to create scrapbooks that are more authentic, organic and genuine than ever before.

Nic Howard is a recognized name and personality in the industry, both domestically and internationally, and is prominently featured in a variety of scrapbook magazines on a regular basis.
MY REVIEW:
Howard's book is creatively divided into seven chapters, one for each day of the week.

Monday - The Essence of the Day
Tuesday - The Essence of Me
Wednesday - Everyday Moments in the Past
Thursday - Everyday Moments in the Future
Friday - People Around Us
Saturday - My Environment
Sunday - Life's Little Lessons and Words of Wisdom
Each chapter contains three distinct 'lessons'. Even the books graphic design (which I LOVE, by the way) supports the idea of the 'everyday' with it's typed notes on notebook paper 'attached' with masking tape, angled accent photos and coffee splotches and coffee cup rings throughout.

This book definitely focuses on 'what' to scrap rather than 'how' or 'with what products'. For a scrapper who unfortunately doesn't have the luxury of making her hobby her life's work, Howard gives examples of the layouts I really wish I had more time for instead of just getting the holidays and 'events' scrapped.

Five of my FAVORITE layout ideas from this book include:

*Daily Frustrations
*I Can't Believe We Used to Do That!
*Anticipating the Future
*Who is in My Day?
*Those Little Things People Say
Every chapter and lesson comes with several beautiful layout examples from Howard herself as well as 11 other scrap artists from the US, Australia, New Zealand and Canada. There are a total of 80 inspirational layouts compiled within this book!

I am certainly more inspired to FIND the time to scrap the 'everyday' after reading and admiring the wonderful layouts in Howard's book!

MY RATING:
5 STARS!!

That's Life by Nic Howard on Amazon!


Upcoming Review: We Dare You: Scrapbook Challenges About Real Life by Kristina Contes, Meghan Dymock, Nisa Fiin, and Genevieve Simmonds
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Monday, October 22, 2007

Fall Photo Shoot

I'd been admiring the red leaves of a tree on campus where I work for a couple days and decided we'd better take advantage before they were gone. Kaitlin and I went out to take these photos early Saturday evening. She did ALL the posing herself...all I told her was to stay near the rock.


This one is my favorite, I think:

This is what I got when I asked her who her boyfriend is...she doesn't like being asked about this...

Also a favorite:

This could have been a cute pose, but as you can tell from her expression, she was done with it!

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Sunday, October 21, 2007

Kaitlin's First Bowling Experience

Kaitlin's soccer coach had promised her team a bowling party to celebrate their season at their last game a couple weeks ago and yesterday was the day.

Kaitlin had never been bowling before, so it was pretty fun to watch!

Here is her coach, Andy, giving her a hand to get started...a good ole granny roll is always a good bet for a rookie and I heard the chainsaw (the unique arm movement in the video) never hurts in an effort to encourage to the ball in the direction you want.

I apologize for the orientation...it's not too long so you shouldn't get a crook in your neck. I forgot that you should only take video horizontally and I couldn't figure out a way to flip it like you can with photos. If anyone knows of a way, please let me know.

video

I think we'll have to make this a family outing very soon...
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Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Featured on AdoramaPix Blog

Amelia over at Adorama contacted me a while back with a bunch of questions about the scrapbooking world and how photography fits into the mix for a post she was planning for their blog. The post went live today.

Adorama is one of the nation's largest photo retail and mail order suppliers. For over 25 years, they have been serving professionals as well as amateurs in the photographic, video, digital imaging and telescope fields. They offer the best combination of quality services, vast selection, knowledgeable staff, and competitive pricing. And, now, with the explosion of scrapbooking, they are also offering scrapbook friendly print sizes: 12x12, 10x10, 6x6 and 5x5.
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Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Remebering Dryer Days at the Renaissance Fair

It's been doing this alternating raining/misting thing for four days...four days straight. I'm starting to wonder if I live in South Dakota...or in the US northwest!! It's giving me the doldrums, I tell you!

To try to brighten my mood, I'm working on some of the photos I took at the Minnesota Renaissance Fair last month...when it was sunny...and warm...and DRY!

Here's my little Renaissance princess.

One of my favorite parts of the day was watching the jousting.

Our knight was the green knight.

And he fought valiantly.


But he did not win...he was a loser...yup, that's him face down in the dirt.

This is Puke & Snot. You heard right...that's really their names (at least during the Renaissance Fair, that is). Evidently, they are the #1 act to see when at the fair. They were quite funny...a little off-color (come on...what did you expect from two guys named Puke & Snot?), but definitely funny.

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Saturday, October 13, 2007

5 Great Photography Articles I've Tagged in Del.icio.us

I love it when I find a great photography post with beautiful photos for inspiration or useful advice. Here are five of my recent favorites:
1) Warning: These 9 Photoshop Techniques May Result In Great Photos
2) 15 Stunning Images Using Blur to Portray Movement
3) How to get better prints from your digital camera
4) Overcoming Depth of Field Problems in Portraits
5) Twelve Essential Photographic Rules
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Thursday, October 11, 2007

Speaking of Favorite Songs...

Kaitlin seems to have a couple lately herself.

Every time this Old Navy commercial comes on featuring Ingrid Michaelson's song, "The Way I Am," she always starts singing along...it's so cute!



Here's the full song off imeem:



She also has a 'thing' for "Hey There Delilah" by Plain White T's...she really only knows the chorus and kinda stumble-mumbles through the rest, but who cares...it's adorable!



Quite refined musical tastes for a 5-year-old...I'm impressed. But wait, she also loves everything Hanna Montana/Miley Cyrus. And her father does have her singing "Bullet with Butterfly Wings" by Smashing Pumpkins which she calls "The Rat in a Cage Song"...hmmm...not so refined, maybe?
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Tuesday, October 9, 2007

New Favorite Song: Apologize by OneRepublic

We have a short break in our fair schedule right now so I walked a couple blocks over to Chipoltle Mexican Grill and got some lunch. First time I've ever eaten there...very good!

Now I'm back in my room on the 17th floor of the Hilton in downtown Minneapolis and just had to find the song I heard on the radio driving up here yesterday..."Apologize" by OneRepublic. It is officially my new favorite song...enjoy:

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Monday, October 8, 2007

On the Road Again...

Now I'm off to Minneapolis, MN for a National College Fair. There are over 400 colleges and universities that will be in attendance and an estimated student attendance of 23,000! This is, by far, the biggest fair we attend. Technically, this is supposed to be a day off for me (Columbus Day = Native American Day in South Dakota), but I'll be hitting the road shortly as it starts bright and early tomorrow morning and runs through Wednesday, 12:30 p.m.

Not much free time on this trip, but hope to get together with a cousin for dinner tonight and perhaps visit the Mall of America for a couple hours during a short break we have tomorrow.

Kaitlin has been taking my trips this fall pretty well...probably because she knows I usually come home 'bearing gifts'! :-) Regardless, glad that this will be my last one...hopefully.
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Sunday, October 7, 2007

A Busy Saturday...

We had quite a busy day yesterday. Kaitlin had her last soccer game of the season and she had lots of family there to support her. Justin, Grandma & Grandpa Paulson, Grandma Pechous and me.

She got a few good kicks in.

Showed some team spirit...."GO BIG SHARKS!".

And good sportsmanship..."Good game, good game...".

All in all, it was a great season. She had a great time and learned a lot about being part of a team and having a positive attitude, even when your team's getting whooped! :-)

In the afternoon, Justin & I took Kaitlin out to Garrity's Prairie Gardens. It was feeling unusually summer like in South Dakota for October 6th. It was around 90 degrees and quite windy. Not quite as 'fallish' as I might have liked for the day, but figured we'd better go while we can because next weekend it could be too cold...that's SD for you!

Kaitlin and Justin got a kick out of the little goats.

Kaitlin even posed for me long enough to get a couple good pics of her with the pumpkins.

Then we explored the apple orchard...


before Kaitlin had some fun in the hay maze.

Then we took a hay ride out to the pumpkin patch to find the 'perfect' pumpkins:




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Saturday, October 6, 2007

An Unfaithful Blogger...

Boy, have I been neglecting my blog for the past month or so...have to apologize. It has just been a very busy time lately...work, travel for work, travel for family for fun, soccer, everyday life. Looking at the calendar this morning, I realized that I've spend NINE NIGHTS in a hotel and the better part of THIRTEEN DAYS away from home within the past five weeks. That might not be a lot to some, but to me, that's a huge amount of time away from home!

In the mix of it all, I've decided to take on another endeavor related to my beloved hobby of scrapping that I've been spending quite a bit of time prepping for. I am very excited about it and will be sharing more on in the coming weeks. (Nothing like a little tease...!) I am a little concerned, however, whether or not I'm ever going to have time to actually scrap again!!

Therefore, I have decided that I'm going to take a break from my "Sunday Spur for Scrapbookers" posts...in case you didn't notice, I haven't been keeping up with those lately. However, when I do run across any great source of scrapping inspiration, I will certainly share it here. It may just be in a less 'formal' format.
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Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Qwest Center Omaha

In Omaha for high school visits this week and staying near the Qwest Center...



Mime

Trumpet Man with Clock

Man on Stilts

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