Friday, December 28, 2007

Taking Off

I'm getting ready to head out to Las Vegas again to visit with the Grandparents for Christmas. We're taking the PS2 and some new games, and we're gonna eat too much and drink too much and play games and yak and maybe hit a few slot machines. Hope everyone had a very merry Christmas as I did, and cheers to a wonderful 2008 from my family to yours!

Monday, December 24, 2007

Friday, December 21, 2007

It Just Keeps Getting Better...

So I'm driving over to Stayce's to drop off a project for Creative Imaginations when my phone rings. I dig frantically through my purse to find my phone where it's hiding under the kitchen sink, and narrowly avoid hitting a big 'ole truck that some idiot parked along the curb (the *nerve* of some people, sheesh!). Anywhoo, I look at the caller I.D. and notice it's a 505 number...I don't think I owe anyone money in the 505 area code, so I answered it.

It was a sweet girl named Tiffany to tell me I'd been invited to join to her Design Team that I applied for last week! Wow, that was way better than a wrong number! Though I still believe she may have meant to call Ali Edwards, she somehow got me...and now she's stuck with me! Anyone who knows me knows I am not above taking this position based solely on a technicality.

The site still hasn't made it's official announcement so far, so I am not including a link just yet. Any friends of mine would surely pop over there and immediately start running off their big mouths, so I'll just save the details for a little later, after the announcement has been made.

So for now, I'll just share this little layout I made with the pictures I took during "girl time" last week:

And now, I'm off to do some of that Christmas shopping I've been putting off till the last minute...wish me luck, I have a feeling it's gonna be like herding cattle about now.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Laughing all the way to the bank.

I got this in the mail yesterday:

It's for a layout I made for the Creative Imaginations booth at CHA. One of the ladies from Scrapbooking and Beyond saw it and asked if she could publish it...AND pay me for it! Ppppffft. You want to pay me to play with paper and glue and pipe cleaners? Ok...I guess so.

I got the check in the mail yesterday, and haven't been able to stop giggling about it since. Notice on the check where it says "no cents"...isn't it so appropriate? That's what I keep thinking.

Anyway here's a picture of the layout. It's in the Winter issue of Scrapbooking and Beyond, on sale now.

Merry Christmas to me!

Sunday, December 16, 2007


Missing you today and every day more than you could ever know.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Full Blown Panic Mode

I woke up this morning in Full Blown Panic Mode. Today is December 14...exactly 11 days before Christmas and I have gotten absolutely nothing done that is remotely Christmas related. Seriously. The tree is still not up (though I did take it out of the garage), I have not baked a single cookie, or wrapped one single gift. In fact, I think I've only bought ONE gift for ONE person on my list. This weekend isn't looking good either...tonight I am going to a Christmas cropping party, tomorrow I have another class to teach at Paper Pansies, and by Sunday I have to finish a project I will be teaching in January at Paper Pansies (check back soon for a little sneak peek).

Like I said...Full Blown Panic Mode.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Girl Time

December was starting to get to me. Don't get me wrong, I love all things Christmas and the special times shared with family and friends baking, eating, and shopping...the whole shebang. But I would be lying if I said that I cherish every moment leading up to Christmas day. December is such a hectic month, each day becoming shorter than the last. And just so you know, real life and non-holiday issues don't pause and wait for a better time to interrupt and put a cramp in your holiday spirit. Real life creeps in, gets under your skin, grabs ahold and doesn't let go. What's a girl to do?
Call (or email) another girl (or two) and make time to let loose...that's what!

Two of my oldest, dearest friends and I put Christmas on hold and got together for some seriously needed girl time. We laughed, we cried, we drank. We went to Starbucks, then to a bar, then had a slumber party. Just what the doctor ordered! And guess what? When it was all over, Christmas was still coming, and real life was still right there waiting. But somehow it all seems much easier to tackle today.

And just because I am missing my mom horribly this month:

Her birthday is coming up later this week, and I still can't imagine what Christmas will be like without her. My dad and I will be putting up her tree later today, and I'm hoping that will help us to feel her spirit around us for the holiday even more.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

A little quickie...

It's been so long since I made a page layout "just for me"...this page was a well deserved break from a hectic week of projects for CHA. Can you tell I'm just head-over-heels in love with this Christmas paper from Scenic Route? I would decorate my whole house in it if I could! The striped paper would make a gorgeous accent rug, and the green would make a beautiful couch, don't you think?
Back to the work table, gotta start kitting for my Christmas Clear Album class at the Scrapbook Garden next week...anyone out there gonna join me? It will be on December 13th at 6:00, and we'll have some cocoa and listen to some Christmas tunes while we work. It should be a welcome distraction from the Holiday hustle and bustle...sound good? Give Melissa a call at (714) 841-1801 and she'll be happy to hook you up!

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Not Too Shabby

It's only December 2nd and all my Christmas cards are finished and ready to mail! Even with all the other stuff I have piled on my plate right now...projects, classes and craft fairs, oh my! Now if I could just get my shopping done, I'd be cruisin' thru the holiday season.

Gonna make a Christmas CD sometime this weekend to listen to while working on gifts and baking cookies next week. What are some of your favorite holiday tunes? I've heard the Starbucks Christmas CD is pretty awesome, any other suggestions?

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

The Latest

Made this little morsel to teach at my local scrapbook store:

The album is made from clear acrylic, and the paper and embellishments are from Creative Imaginations. Wouldn't these make the cutest Christmas gifts for family and friends? Be sure to leave a comment here if you're interested in class or kit information!

That's it for now...Gonna go teach a class tonight and hang out with some cool chicks!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Take a Little Trip with Me....

A very good friend of mine that moved to Germany almost 3 years ago sent me an email saying she was flying out to Las Vegas the day before Thanksgiving. And though I couldn't very well bail out on my family for Thanksgiving Dinner (since I am the one with all the wicked cooking skills) I did decide that they could live without me for a couple of days after. The hubby and I threw a couple bags in the trunk of the Camry and took off on the four hour drive to sin city!

I ran into this guy on the way there...he was asking why no one comes to see him anymore. Nevermind the fact that he lives in the middle of the freakin desert, he whined that if you really loved him anymore you would make the drive. He's a little self conscious about his weight these days, but he swears he has a thyroid condition and it has absolutely nothing to do with the double decker cheeseburgers dripping in thousand island dressing and french fries dipped in bleu cheese he still eats every single day. I believed him and had both. With a diet coke just in case he's pulling my leg.

Make that population least for the next 10 minutes or so.

I love the Hard Rock Cafe. Every time I go back it's a different place. One thing I love that never changes though is this Price quote over the door. It makes me want to make that little *kissy* noise and dance from display to display shakin what my momma gave me. Speaking of displays, how cool is this Killers display created by matermind Tim Burton? And if you must know...I ordered a buffalo chicken sandwich and a frou-frou cocktail made with Malibu, pineapple juice and a splash of cranberry juice (cuz I'm still feelin the Thanksgiving vibe). From then on the weekend looked a little something like this:

So the weekend was awesome and fun and over before it even began. It was great to reconnect with a special friend, and make a couple new ones along the way. I just wish it could have lasted a little longer. Michelle, I miss you already, girl! (Insert *kissy* noise here).

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Not Creating :(

The holidays are sneaking up on me in full force. I was at Walmart yesterday, and wow! Aisles and aisles of sparkly, twinkly, glittery stuff hypnotized me and sucked me right in before I even knew what hit me. I wandered through them in a state of semi-consciousness and lost an hour of my life just ooohing and aaahing and touching the fuzzy stockings, the flocked wreaths stuffed with pointsettas, the ceramic snowmen that light up.

When I finally came to, I found myself actually looking forward to Christmas. That magical time of year that finds us packed like sardines in mile long lines at the store counters, stuck in traffic in the mall parking lot blaring our horns, and on hold for hours when calling the customer service desk of any given company that promises to ship that must have gift of the season overnight. Aaah, yes. Looking SO forward to it.

One of my favorite things about Christmas is giving handmade gifts. On a chilly November night, I love to pour myself a cup of eggnog, turn on the Christmas carols, and sit at my craft table creating my little pretties. By now, I should be doing that, or at least have an idea what I will be making and for whom.

But I'm not. Because my house has been a complete toxic bio hazard for far too long and it's time to stop the madness. So instead of whistling jingle bells and cutting pretty paper, I have been up to my eyeballs in Simple Green, Comet, and Pine Sol. For the past 3 days I have put every work project and holiday project on hold and scrubbed my kitchen from top to bottom. Actually, scrubbed is putting it mildly. I have taken every last thing out of every last cupboard, wiped down the inside and outside, washed what belongs in there, threw out or donated what doesn't, put it back. This includes under the sink and that junk drawer that was stuffed with so much important stuff that the drawer would barely close. Every appliance, inside and out, every piece of tupperware that was missing a lid or stained by spaghetti sauce. Every dust bunny filled corner and baseboard. My pathetic 40 year old arms are sore, my hands are raw, and still, I trudge on. Spring cleaning took about 4 years to get here, and I gotta take advantage of it before the urge passes for the next 4 or 8 or 10 years.

I did take a short, well deserved break for a couple of hours last night, and headed over to Stayce's with a crop bag full of Christmas Card making supplies for a little shindig she put together for a few of us girls. I was looking forward to getting a jump on my cards at least...excited about the new Scenic Route Rockland Christmas paper and all the wonderful things I was gonna do with it. I poured myself a little (24 ounces is little, right?) cup of egg nog, added a splash (10 ounces is a splash, right?) of rum, and all bets were off. I didn't finish one single card. Had lots of good laughs, took a couple silly pictures, and annoyed pretty much everyone that was trying to get anything done. But not one card was actually completed. By me or Stayce or Laurelee. My apologies to the "productive" side of the table...

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Feelin the Holiday Spirit...

And because I had 3 sweet people leave me 3 sweet comments, I feel like sending you all a little goodie in the mail! Thanks Carla, Yvie and Tracy for showing my little blog some love, and if you email me your addresses at, I will return the favor. Gettin in the holiday spirit early this year!

Gonna start my Christmas Cards this weekend at a little get together at my friend Stayce's house...gonna gather up some girls, sip some brandy and egg nog, turn on the Christmas carols and crank 'em out! Gonna be a good time, seriously looking forward...

AND, if any one is interested in anything from Close to my Heart, I will be having a party this Saturday, and I will leave it open for catalog orders for a couple days after that. Send me an email and I'd be happy to order whatever you "need"!

I'll leave you with a cute little declaration I read on a message board today...I think I gotta print this out in a cute font and maybe decorate a title and hang it on my scraproom wall:

The Scrapbooker's Bill of Rights

A Scrapbooker is entrusted with documenting and safely preserving family photos in an album to be treasured by future generations. Creating a Scrapbook is an honorable and important task. As a Scrapbooker, you are entitled (but not limited) to the following rights:

1. You have the right to take as long as you want to complete one album page. This may be five minutes or two weeks.

2. You have the right to purchase a certain scrapbook item for other reason than because
a) you like it;
b) you think it's cute;
c) you'll never find it again, or;
d) you know you'll use it someday.

3. You have the right to a workspace of your own. This may be the basement, your college student's old bedroom, or the kitchen table.

4. You have the right to scrapbook when inspiration strikes--whether the dishes are done or not.

5. You have the right to request peaceful, kid-free, stress-less scrap time--guilt-free.

6. You have the right to create pages that reflect and celebrate the spirit of the one person who is usually NOT in the photograph: You.

7. You have the right to put whatever you want on your album page—whether or not it's the latest trend.

8. You have the right to do nothing more than snack and socialize at a 6-hour cropping party.

9. You have the right to value your personal scrapbooking style to be as important as your photographs. You are creating a treasure—and part of that treasure is you.

10. You have the right to create your own legacy, one page at a time.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Random Layout, New Class Kit and a RAK

Made this little morsel last night in an attempt to use up some of my paper scraps. The paper is Salsa Celebration by Junkitz, and looks so stinkin cute on either black or white cardstock, I just wanna eat it up! I was inspired to pull out my needle and embroidery thread after seeing a layout that Stayce did for a challenge...and I'm glad I did! I really love the way it came out, but I think I'm over hand stitching for a bit.

And this is the mini book I was working on the other day. Isn't it so bright and cheerful? I think when the sky turns grey and it gets colder outside, I start reaching for bright, happy paper to lift my spirits a bit. Just looking at it makes me smile...and isn't that the whole point?

And a couple of the inside pages:

The book is for a class kit I will be selling at a brand new site called where we'll be offering class kits, online classes, and have a brand new message board and gallery. I am so excited to be a part of the fun stuff going on there, and hope you'll pop on over and check it out when you have a minute.

And lastly, if you've made it this far I'd like to say "thanks" by having a little RAK drawing. Just post a comment here, and on Monday morning I will have dh pick a number at random. The corresponding comment will win the goodies above!

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Sneaky Peekie...

Shhhh...working on something fun for a class coming to a website near you very soon!

Friday, November 2, 2007

Halloween Was A Bust

No kidlets running around at home = a pretty uneventful Halloween. But in my book, uneventful is good, I like uneventful. I spent a pretty relaxing Hallo's Eve at my brother and sister-in-law's house, munching on cheese and crackers, passing out candy to the gouls and goblins, and watching a not-so-scary movie on the couch. Although I must admit I was forced to wear mouse ears the entire evening or endure the wrath of Christa, head of the costume police. In case the suspense is killing you, don't hold your breath waiting to see a picture. I won't be posting one.

Grama left yesterday morning...and I shot straight up to my scraproom before the door was even closed behind her. Don't get me wrong, love my grams, but her visit sent me into a serious scrap withdrawl. Since then, I've been playing with the new fall paper from cute! Making this little book for my other grandparents that I don't see nearly enough. The little book is from Maya Road, and is it not the cutest stinkin little thing? the book is only 3"x 9" at it longest point, so it's been really easy to put together pretty quickly.

In other exciting news, I entered my Halloween Door Hanger (posted below) into a home decor contest over at and I found out this morning that it actually won! I told my hubby that I won the contest, to which he replied "what did you win?" He's obviously missing the point...sheesh!

Favorite Izzy Quote from last night's Greys

Izzy to George: "Hot perfect sex requires shaved legs."

Sunday, October 28, 2007

This Seriously Rocks My World

Have you seen it yet? The Creative Cafe stuff from Creative Imaginations? If not, just let me say you're in for quite a treat. Got my grubby little paws on some of this stuff (thanks, Stayce, you are for sure my hero!) and it is TO DIE FOR cute! I think these rub-on swatchbooks alone are going to keep me excited for weeks. Like "not be able to sleep" excited. Haven't felt that way about a new product in quite a while. My grandma is in town for a week, and bless her little heart God knows I love her, but she is keeping me too busy to go near my new stuff! It's making me a little cranky as I'm sure you can imagine. So no thanks to grams, I haven't been able to really dig in yet, but when I do....look out! Gonna make some totally cute stuff! Love that it's here in time for Christmas, and it looks like I can already start crossing names off the gift books for the grandparents, frames for friends and family, mason jars decorated with rub-ons and ribbons for the neighbors....

Monday, October 22, 2007

They're Heeeeere...

The Santa Ana's are HOT, dry, strong gusty winds that plague Southern California from September to February off and on every year. They're born in the Rocky Mountains, and push their way down to us through the high deserts, warming 5 degrees every 1,000 feet they fall, usually fanning brush fires along the way. Today there are 13 fires burning in Southern California, and the smoke and ash is everywhere. My brother just bought a new house, not 10 miles from where a huge fire is burning in the Foothill Ranch area. In San Diego county, over 250,000 have been evacuated from their homes. Power is out in many areas. I'm praying that the winds don't shift overnight, sending the fires in new directions, and doing any more damage than they already are. The worst part about it all, is that many of the fires are started by arsons, who know the Santa Ana's will send a fire out of control. We see it every year, each one more devistating than the last. It's just so very sad, and my heart goes out to those that are dealing with this nightmare.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

7 Months Already

Can it really be that long since losing my mother to cancer? It still feels like yesterday, and I imagine it will for a long time to come. I've really been missing her this week, the grief has been like a shadow following me around. Like something I can't really see but I know is there. Scrapping her memory, for me, is a part of the healing process . It's a way I can honor her memory, and spend a couple of hours alone with her again. Her pictures have become my link to her, and I am so, so grateful that I have them, and that this hobby offers me the creative outlet to celebrate them.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Ghosts and Goblins...

I love Halloween! It's probably my favorite holiday of all time. When else am I allowed to sneak up behind my daughter with a hairy plastic tarantula and scare the living crap outta her by dangling it just inside her peripheral line of sight? Halloween rocks!

In order to properly advertise my love for all things spooky and creepy, I've made this to hang on my <----front door under the black porch light. It features actual mummy bandages and the aforementioned hairy tarantula!

Okay, so I actually made it for a class I am teaching at the Scrapbook Garden on October 24th, but still. I made it, so I get to hang it on my door when the class is over. And okay, fine. The mummy bandages are actually from Walgreens. BUT If you are gonna be around next Wednesday, say...5:30 pm...why not sign up and join us? Just give Melissa a call at (714) 841-1801 and she'll be happy to hook a sistah up. Hope to see you there!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Just Because

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

"I will never start a blog."

That's what I told myself way back in the beginning...when blogs were something new and exciting and fun! Later, I reminded myself again when practically everyone I knew and their mothers were blogging. And I said the same thing when I discovered my cat blogging in the middle of the night while I was sleeping. Okay, I get it...EVERYONE is blogging. But still, the idea always seemed ridiculous to me...why would anyone want to read about all the crazy crap running around my head on a daily basis? It's hard enough for me to handle, so why would I possibly want to subject the people I consider friends and family to that kind of madness? Nope, I'll never start a blog. Not interested, Don't Have Time, Not Enough To Say, Never Happen in a Million Years.

Well, here it is. My first blog post. Well, second technically, if you count the test post.

As I sat down to type it I suddenly remembered why I swore I'd never do this. The minute I clicked on "create new post", I was paralyzed. White screen...blank...staring at me, mocking me, giving me the stink eye. A big scary monster, with pointy fangs, just waiting to eat me all up. Staring at me with beady yellow eyes and hideous breathe.

I typed in a title and almost hit the delete button.

And then, in a rare, light-bulb kind of moment I realized...that scary monster is fear. Fear of what people will think of me, fear of being judged, fear of failure. The scary monster with pointy fangs lives in my head. He's the part of me that says "see, I told you not to try something new...It's uncomfortable and difficult, and you're not a very good writer".

Well, screw him. I never was one to back down from a good fight, so here's to conquering fear, and learning to never say never.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Is This Thing On?

Testing, 1...2...3...! Not original, I know...but hey, cut me some slack. It's 5:00 am, and I'm not feeling particularly clever yet.