Friday, January 30, 2015

Love & Kisses

I am really liking my creative planning and how the transition from scrapbooking to card making has been so simple for me the past few days.

I thought that since Valentine's Day is a few weeks away that I should try to make some Valentine's Day/Love cards.

With the first three cards, I used the Love Struck Cricut Cartridge.  This was actually the first time I have ever used it. I think it was released in 2010...that's four years I have had it and haven't created with it!

Card #1:

The base for this card was just kraft paper cut at the standard card size.  The patterned paper and the papers used as matting, as well as the paper used for cutting the Cricut image were all scraps--so I am not really clear what company(s) they are from.

The bottom layer on the Cricut image is actually pink.  I used the Tim Holtz Distressed Ink in Vintage Photo with a foam applicator and sponged the bottom layer once the top layer was on.

The wording and the heart in the background are from the set, From the Heart from Tim Holtz's Stamper's Anonymous set.  I used brushed corduroy, and Tea Dye Distress Ink on the heart.  For the background, I used vintage photo, brushed corduroy, and worn lipstick for coloring.

Card #2:
The base for this card is also kraft paper. At the bottom of the front of the card, I punched with an EK Success border punch.

The patterned paper was from my scrap bin.

The ribbon/lace that I put on the top of the card was from my ribbon stash.

Card #3:
This card's base is actually 6x6.  The base, "Kiss" word, and the mat are all Bazzil Bling papers.

I'm not quite sure what paper company the lips are from. LOL!  The three little pink brads are Bazzil Bling brads.

The next three cards are made with some Precious Moments rubber stamps that I found!  I literally have not used these stamps in at least TEN years! What a joy it  was to find them!

All the images were colored with Prismacolor colored pencils.

Card #4:
The base of this card is kraft paper.  I used a Fiskars border punch for the side.  The ribbon is wired ribbon.  The paper I used for matting were all from my scrap bin.

I did distress with Tim Holtz Distress Ink in vintage photo and spun sugar.

Card #5:
This card's base is from kraft paper.  For the bow, I had a piece of scrap lace that was pink and I thought it looked cute on this card.

The patterned papers used were from my scrap bin.  I cut the circles with the Creative Memories circle cutter system.  I did ink the background of the image too.

Card #6:
The base for this card is basic white.  The patterned paper and the black for matting and also the pink piece of paper that is matting the image were all from my scrap bin.

The ribbon is by Offray.  The pearls were from my bling stash! LOL!

Card #7:
The base of this card is cut at 6x6 Bazzil Bling paper.  The square mat was from my stash, but I know the patterned paper was from the Basic Grey "Bittersweet" collection.

The gray paper is Bazzil Bling also.  I used an EK Success border punch on the top and the bottom of the gray strip of paper.  The stamped image is from Ornate Collection ATC stamps from Tim Holtz's Stamper's Anonymous set.  I inked it with worn lipstick and vintage photo Distress Inks.  The two pearl brads are from Teresa Collins' "Fabrications" collection.  The ribbon is from Offray.

Card #8:
This card is special to me.  It's getting mailed to Wyoming for one of my dearest friend's granddaughter.  She is being home schooled and is doing a lesson on Earth Expedition.  She thought it would be nice for her granddaughter to get cards from other places.

I tried to think of what a little girl would like and find cool and this is what I came up with.

The base is made with white card stock.  The black mat is from Bazzil.  The patterned paper is from my scrap bin, but I know it's from Bo Bunny.

The ladybug was cut using the Create a Critter Cricut Cartridge.  All the paper I used on the ladybug was from Bazzil.  The flower on the corner of the card was punched using a flower paper punch with Bazzil paper.  The "You're So Sweet" saying was from a Studio G stamp set.

Well, there ya have it!  I need to find places for these cards to go! I am very happy with how they all turned out.

I am sorry that this post was so long!

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Making a Comeback....

I have to say--I'm slowly , but surely getting back into blogging.  I would really love to get regular again.  Now, more than ever, I need my blog as an outlet.

Along with blogging, being an outlet for me--so is creating...

About four or so years ago creating was HUGE for me.  I scrapbooked, made card, created mini albums, and basically made anything I could think of.  I'm sure there are a lot of things that made me lose the want and need to get my creativity out.

Looking back on when I quit and potential reasons why--things seem like they are truly excuses and it upsets me now that I let people and situations get the best of me and steal something from me that I truly loved.

I've gained a lot of friends through scrapbooking...but with that, I have had some sadness too.

I've actually been lucky enough to work in TWO scrapbooking stores.  One was a local store here in town that brought some awesome people into my life.  I ended up working there to support my addiction.  I met one of my closest friends there.  Unfortunately, my little home away from home was in the same building that was part of a fire a few years back.  The store and a lot of its supplies were ruined by that fire.  My friend ended up leaving and going back home to Wyoming.  She did come up a few times and had some retreats, But all the work that goes into a retreat and the fact that attendance and sales just weren't there proved to be the end of that journey for me.

Although I was saddened by that, I found another friend on Facebook that ran a scrapbook store out of her home.  At first, we had a great friendship and was able to work together and spend time going to dinners, having some girls' nights, playing games, and laughing our butts off.  We actually got our families together.  But-when you have two very strong minded people, who speak their minds, butt heads--it's gonna be catastrophic for a friendship.  The relationship ended with bitterness and no way to mend.

These two things were a major factor in me losing my passion for creating.  There was also really no place to meet friends and craft together anymore.  All of us that were friends either lost touch or got too busy with life to make the time to get together and create together.

I understand getting busy will throw a wrench into your creative mojo, but between finding work and meeting people who didn't share my same passion--I began moving further from it.

Fast forward to the recent couple of years and I just couldn't bring myself to go down to my craft area and create.  Papers, ribbon, adhesive, etc.--all started collecting dust....Apparently my creative self was beginning to get dusty too.

I did have a couple of instances that I would make a birthday card or alter something.  I altered a clipboard that I used for work when I was a cake decorator for Sam's Club....unfortunately, it's still there. :(

But it wasn't until a couple of months ago that I started finding myself getting comfortable in my space again. I actually have a plan to implement until I have my mojo for creating back again.

I am actually VERY behind on my scrapbooking.  So, I'll take a group of pictures and make some layouts.  Once those are done, I move onto making cards.  I'll work on cards for 2 to 3 days and move into crafting with other elements-whether it's making a sign, wreath, etc.

Well, for this time around with scrapbooking, I pulled out some of Jon's Halloween  pictures from 2001! WHAT THE HECK?!?!?!  I was able to make a few groupings to total 4 pages!

All of these layouts were created with the My Mind's Eye Boo to You! and Spider's Web collection. I also used my Cricut---which I have also missed! The cartridge I used was October 31st.

They are a little more simple than I am used to, but it's a start!

Oh, the memories! Remembering Jon that young (He was 2 years old!) feels like it was yesterday.  He's now 15 and growing up way too fast!  I miss these times though.  Who doesn't miss their kids as little ones though?

Well that's it until the next time....which I hope is soon!

Thanks for stopping by and reading! :)

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Sweet Chex Mix and Trying to Start This Up Again!!

Hey Everyone!! Wow! I have been gone FOREVER! A little over two years to be exact! I actually didn't plan on my first blog post back to be a recipe, but it's all good.  I have been wanting to post about things that have happened or are happening now in my life and lessons that I have learned.  What's sad is that every time I try to write the post about that I draw a complete blank.  I think I am trying or thinking too hard with it.  I am not proud of how some of those lessons were learned, but happy that life has turned around.

OK-so let's talk about Sweet Chex Mix!  I had this for the first time at a Bunco Night at a friend's house-YEARS AGO.  I remember the first time I tasted it.  It was like a sweet taste of Heaven in every bite.  Well, for me it was! It's truly easy to make!

Here's what you'll need:

*1/2 cup or 1 stick of butter
*1 cup of light Karo or corn syrup
*1 cup of sugar
*1/2 box of Rice Chex
*1/2 box of Corn Chex
*1 small (2-3oz) bag of slivered almonds
----We have used cashews that we chopped up and that was good as well!----
*1-1/2 cups or more of dried cranberries
*1-1/2 cups or more of shredded, sweetened coconut
*1 teaspoon or tablespoon of vanilla

You will also need a BIG BOWL.  I have a 32 cup Tupperware bowl, a small sauce pan, a wooden spoon, a timer, and 2-3 cookie sheets or trays.

Mix together the Chex cereals, slivered almonds, dried cranberries, and shredded coconut.  I actually use my hands for this process. Mix together and set aside.

In the small sauce pan, melt the butter over medium to medium high heat. 

Once the butter is melted, pour in the Karo syrup and sugar.Start stirring this.  You are going to want to stir constantly.  Once the mixture starts to bubble or boil start your timer and keep stirring for 3 minutes and 30 seconds.

Once the 3 and a half minutes is up, remove the pan from the heat and stir in the vanilla.

Be careful-sometimes the vanilla being poured into the mixture will cause it to pop a bit. After the vanilla is poured in then pour the sugar mixture into the cereal mixture and stir to combine.  

After the cereal and sugar mixture are combined-spread the Chex Mix on the cookie sheets or trays to cool.  

Once the Chex Mix is cooled down (approximately 30 minutes), you can store it in a 2-1/2 gallon Ziploc Bag.

Well, there you have it! I hope you and your family enjoy it as much as my family and friends do! 

I am really going to keep blogging frequently since I have missed it.

Feel free to follow me and comment! :)

See you soon! :)

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Sometimes Life Takes You.....

I was looking through my blog the other night.  I reminisced about a lot of the memories that I have on here.  It really is a record of my life!  I also looked at all of the fun, "crafty things" that I have worked on in the past.

A lot has changed for Garth, myself, and the kids this past year. We have had so many blessings that it isn't even funny.

I'm not going to go in any particular order throughout this whole year---so just bear with me.

In July, I started filling out applications and sending my resume out.  I did have my doubts that I would find anything.  I would think to myself, "Who the heck is gonna want a stay-at-home mom who works part time at The Pita Pit."  Now, don't get me wrong here, The Pita Pit was a HUGE BLESSING for us this year. It got us through a rough time financially AND I met the BEST people. I still lovingly refer to them as my "Pita Peeps". :)

Anyways- at the end of July, I got a phone call from who would be my future boss. I had put in an application and resume (I think) in online to the Boy Scouts of America.  There was a posting on the local Job Service website that said that the local council Trading Post/Store needed a retail assistant.

So, I went to my interview and got to meet Michelle, my boss and Vickie, my other boss! :) I was so nervous at my interview that I thought that I had messed it up for sure. :) I wanted this job so bad because of the hours and the fact that it was more geared for "family" with the Monday through Friday hours and NO NIGHTS! :)

Well, I must not have messed up too badly because I had a message on my home phone (which funny enough I never check, so I told everyone that I didn't get the job, because I hadn't heard back yet.) and the message was from MICHELLE!!!  She offered me the position and I happily accepted. I did want to give Chrissy, my old boss, 2 weeks though.  She had worked with me through so much and was THE BEST BOSS and a truly awesome friend.

The new job meant more money for us, better hours for me and my family to do things together, and really just a great opportunity.

Well, a better job also meant that we could afford some things that we were thinking about getting. Our first purchase from that list was our FIRST camper.  We really had never gone camping as a family (you know, just me, Garth, and the kids).  We had been camping with my family before I was pregnant with Sasha, but it wasn't a very good experience.

We were only able to get in TWO camping trips before school started, but I wasn't going to complain.:)  I just can't wait until "Camping Season 2013"!  I really am hoping that we can have a fun filled Spring and Summer! :)

Sasha turned 5 in June and this year she was supposed to start Kindergarten in public school.  I had some reservations about this for a few reasons: 1- She just didn't seem "ready" for Kindergarten. AND 2- At the time of registration, she wasn't doing as well in speech as she is now. ***She is now getting transitioned out of speech! We are going to miss Miss Molly horribly though. I am not looking forward to that Good-Bye! Although, since I have been working, Garth has taken Sasha to her appointments.*** We were also having to maybe explore that Sasha may have very well have had a learning disability or worse (they were thinking Asperger's or ADD). I will tell you that during this time I was on bended knee A LOT praying for her.
So, we went around looking for different schools for Sasha.  I asked some friends what they recommended. I was wanting a Kindergarten that I was comfortable with, where I knew she wouldn't fall through the cracks.

A friend that we have known for years suggested Wee Disciples.  I knew they had a preschool program,  but I didn't realize that they also had a kindergarten class too. So, I called and spoke to Debbie (who ended up being Sasha's Kindergarten teacher).  We met and she showed that they go by the same curriculum as the public schools in order to insure that the transition for the kids when they switch, is an easy one. I did share with Debbie that we weren't sure, but thought that Sasha may have some issues and she said that it was fine and she would keep in contact with us and Molly and who ever else needed to know what was going on with Sasha! I will say that Debbie is the closest example of a good Christian person that I can come up with and she has so much patience with all the children. :) She is the best! We are VERY BLESSED to have been able to have her in Sasha's life. :)

So, the First Day of School happened and things went BEAUTIFULLY!!!  Then a week...then a month.....Sasha was SOARING!!!!! She really showed us all that we had underestimated her.  Her wings are growing more beautiful by the day!! :)
Jon has really only had one issue this year and that has been actually wanting to go to school.  We ended up having to meet with his teachers and counselor and he is now doing well. :) He really is a good kid, just stubborn as all get out. It is a blessing and a curse. :)

He made the A team in football this year.  He loves defense and that is where the coaches put him.  Although, I couldn't tell you the position, because I don't know a THING about football.  I can tell you I know what "champions" means and they were Great Falls' City Champs! :)
Garth and I celebrated 15 years of marriage on September 20th! It's funny because it doesn't seem like that long! We have had our ups and downs, but have been able to weather all of our storms and are better and stronger! :)

My only sadness I have is that with work, the kids' activities, family time, Garth time, taking care of the house, etc....I have had zero time for crafting.  That sucks! :(  But hopefully that will soon change for me. I hope to be able to organize some time for it.

So that's it! How have you been??

Thanks for reading!! :)

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

My Banana Bread Recipe

Hey all! Tonight I decided to NOT let my TEN very ripe bananas go to waste and I actually made 4 batches of banana bread. Now, I don't ever want to brag, but I really don't know of anyone who doesn't like my banana bread. ;) I am always getting compliments on it.

The recipe is really simple and so, so good! :)

The Ingredients:

1 cup of sugar
1/3 cup of margarine/butter; softened
2 eggs
1&1/2 cups mashed ripe bananas (3-4 medium)
1/3 cup of water
1&2/3 cups of all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon of baking soda
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1/4 teaspoon of baking powder
****Now as a special note I also add vanilla and cinnamon, but I don't measure them.****
- heat oven to 350*
- grease bottom of loaf pan(s)
- mix sugar and margarine/butter in a 2&1/2 quart bowl
- stir in eggs until blended
- add bananas and water
- stir in remaining ingredients
- pour into pan
- bake for 60-75 minutes (cooking times may vary depending what kind of loaf pan you use. a good rule of thumb is to bake until a toothpick that is inserted into the middle of the loaf comes out clean.

Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoy! :)

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Trying to Figure It Out...........VLOGGING

Hey All..Long time - No blog! LOL! There have been a couple of reasons for that though. I have been busy with just life! I have been working at The Pita Pit, here in Great Falls now since last August. I still really love it body is just not liking it as much.

I turned 35 in April and man, do I feel every year of it. I do attribute that a lot to my weight and the fact that I have not taken care of myself in years! I am thinking a vegetarian or vegan diet may be in the near future for me. The more I look at the positives and negatives, the more I am impressed with BOTH diets AND ways of life. I have been reading A LOT about organic and non-organic and I have to say non-organic is beginning to frighten me a lot. Not only am I worried about the effects some of this non-organic food will have on my children, but sometimes I feel my body is fighting me back for the years of abuse I have put it through.

I also have been enjoying my family. The four of us and of course, our pets.  Also, our extended family! It's sometimes just fun to sit back and watch the whole dynamic of how everyone interacts. I have had issues in the past with piddly things here and there and swore I wouldn't let certain things go, but in the end, it feels better to just enjoy everything and everyone. I am constantly reminded of how short life is. It is sad really. The people we stop talking to, the people we don't want to forgive, the things we waste energy on. Energy that can be spent on better things.

I am also reminded by some of my closest friends that sometimes it's a good idea to try to reach out and help others. I am hoping to do this soon.

My first priority though, is family. My family. Garth, Jon, Sasha, and out pets. I feel that if everyone within my four walls is taken care of then if I have the time and energy to spend on other things and other people then I should and will be able to start helping others.

Now, how to do that? Well, I am not sure. I am wanting to do so much. I am wanting to actually vlog..for many reasons actually. I would love to have something to document our daily lives and the fun and funny things that happen.

I actually started it today but I am not sure it's the vlog I want for our maiden voyage into VLOG WORLD. It's kinda scary to put yourself out there. I am a very out going girl, but I am always uncomfortable with worrying what other's might think. I do have my husband and kids on board for the VLOG. They said it might be fun.

With the vlog, I know it will be all over the place at first. I am thinking of just vlogging my expectations and what I want to share with everyone and what I will keep OUT OF VIEW. I know I want our dinners and bedtimes/rooms to be ours without people seeing those.

Another reason I would like to vlog is if something were to happen to myself or any of us..we will always have the vlog to look at and watch. Our voices, smiles, faces will be preserved for eternity on-line.

Now, online, does scare me. But I am going to try to take safe guards to make sure everything is as safe as if can be for all of us. :)

I have no pics to share at this time, but I have a lot to go through. I have NO LAYOUTS to share either. I haven't scrap booked for so long. :(  Hopefully that will all change. :)

Thanks for reading!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Follow Your Heart (originally journaled on January 17-2012)

Hey all! :) I know it has unbelievably long since I blogged. Believe it or has been unbelievably long since I have created too. It was the last part of August when I last created something and to tell you the truth. I can't even remember what that was though.

I decided to subscribe to Unity Stamps, Stamp of the Week. I am NOT the type of girl to subscribe to ANYTHING!!! Seriously! :) But I have always loved Unity's style and their stamps, so I decided what the heck!! :) I have been a part of it for 3 weeks and I have not been disappointed yet. Week One was the set that captured me:

It's no secret that I had a fallout with a good friend last year in August and I had been attacked for something I had no control over. I have been able to move on and can't remember the fight or the hurt, but am starting to remember the goofiness and laughter we had sometimes in our relationship. It brings a smile instead of bitterness. But because she had been such a big part of my life and had a lot to do with the scrapbooking/paper crafting industry, I think I lost my desire to create.

Here is my 1-17-12 journal entry:
You know- I never realized how hard it would be to get back into my creative self. 
I have all the tools (almost) that a girl would need to satisfy the hunger of creating.
Where do I begin? I have so much going on in my head. Things I want to do. Things I need to do.
The stamp of the week for Unity Stamp Company spoke to me.  With some of the things I had to deal with the past year. I questioned myself......a lot.  I questioned my peace, my truth. You see, I got so used to pleasing everyone else and keeping my mouth shut with certain people until I just couldn't take it anymore. There was no peace  for me. I lost who I was by conforming to a lifestyle that seemed fitting at the time.
But it was a lifestyle that wasn't fitting for me.  I'm not a drinker-at all! I do like the occasional drink, but I don't like getting beyond messed up.  That was what I had become in a few short months.
I got to where I didn't love life like I did before certain friendships occurred. I resembled someone sad and lonely....someone not me!
But now, what do I do? Now that I got rid of the toxicity that seemingly stayed in my life a few months too long?
I don't want to craft.....I lost my love for it. But as I look at these 2 stamps that came in the mail.  They are calling me.
They want to be used and I want to use them.
I'm a bit rusty I
I guess now's as good a time as any to start my journey back to my creative spirit. :)

This is what I created:

It was what felt right at that moment and now I am trying to find a place to put it where I can constantly see it. :) Just in case I lose "ME" again. :)
Thanks Unity and thanks for reading! :)