Wednesday, March 25, 2009

So there! Duke isn't so dreamy now, is it? MSU continues to Dance!

MSU Basketball is dancing today - cheering loudly because both our Men and Women made it to the Sweet 16!
When #9 MSU advanced to play #1 Duke, it wasn't surprising that our girls were going to get pumped up for this game. Duke was a really good team - there was a reason they were #1 going into the tourney. But they had to come through MSU at MSU... and there was no way she was leaving our home court with a win.

The victory by the women last night against Duke is especially sweet because the Duke Coach, Joanne P McCallie defected from MSU 2 years ago for her "Dream job"... It was ugly when she left - the manner she did so was not classy at all. I guess Coach P though MSU was inferior. Guess not from the look on your face at the end of the game... She was clearly outcoached even though she had a more talented team...
It's being called one of the biggest upsets in NCAA women's tourney history and I am SOOO proud to be a Spartan fan!
Thank you, Coach Merchant, for believing that coaching at MSU can be a dream job too. Our girls clearly believe in you and your coaching skills. What a wonderful job you did last night!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

I'm Back...

Sorry about being gone so long. The computer decided to die on Saturday morning...It seems to do this every six months and it's annoying as {bleep}. It usually ends up with Steve having to wipe the hard drive (thank God that he has my pictures and digi scrapstuff on the external drive) and reinstall everything. This is exactly what happened this time. So, I've lost all my bookmarks and he's reinstalling programs as I remember what was on the computer before. My advice to you: Go spend the money to buy an external drive for storage. It's worth every penny you spend. Last time, we didn't back up to it enough and I lost Mar - Sept 2008 worth of pictures.
So, anywho...
I went out with Stacy last weekend to scrap at Scrapbookers Inc and had a great time! I got 3 layouts done - which is alot for me in only 5 hours of scrapbooking. 2 are for Coordinates Collections DT so you can't look just yet. :) But here's is one I did about my sister, Susan.

The challenge was to scrapbook using your favorite book as an inspiration. My favorite book is My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult. Amazing book with a twist at the end... I knew immediately what I was going to do and had written the journaling in only 20 minutes.

Here's the page:

Since you can't read the wording too well... and I know my sister reads this blog...

" We were born 1 1/2 years apart. I can't remember much about growing up as toddlers or children: only playing sports together and having your teachers in school. Sometimes, things would be good. Most times, we would argue. There always seemed to be sibling rivalry present. We said things to each other than hurt. We did things to each other that were mean. We're weren't friends, we were forced roommates who sometimes managed to find a way to get along. Sometimes, we managed to be kind or to do nice things. It was rare. I was messy, hating to clean anything up. You were neat, getting up at 2am to clean up the room or study. Often, at work, you would get mistaken for me - I don't know how... I was 6'3" with short curly blond hair. You were 5'10" with long curly red hair. I was the sports star. You were the sporty band geek. Do you remember the summer we redecorated our room? Those were good times... Mom breaking the bed to avoid the flying brush from your hand. Just thinking about it makes me smile... Then, you went off to USC. And it became just my room. At this point, things started to change for us. We still weren't friends, but we weren't enemies either. Then I went to off to MSU. In college, we started to grow and change. I like to think we found an appreciation for the friendship we could have beyond the bond of sisterhood. We got closer when you came east to grad school at U of Minn. You supported me and cheered for me. We stood up in each other's weddings. I stood up for you when things fell apart. Now, we are friends and sisters. We love and support each other. I realize now that having a sister is a gift from God, not a curse. You're the only true sister I have and I appreciate you, no matter what. Do we still fight? Of course. Do we still get on each other's nerves occasionally? Sure. But, these things won't drive us apart again. We are united, unconditionally, in the bonds of sisterhood. I know that things will never be a completely smooth ride. But I do know... My Sister's a Keeper."

Other than that....

GO STATE!! I am so excited about March Madness!! The men are to the Sweet Sixteen and play Friday night against Kansas. We beat them earlier this year... I know we can do it again... The women are to the next round and are playing Duke. (That would be sweet revenge - the Duke coach used to be the MSU coach before she defected. And, we're playing on our home court!) Man, I love basketball!!

Off to pack the lunches... See ya all later!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Funny Stories

Annde has been full of fun lately.

On Tuesday, we went to McDonalds (which she calls Old McDonalds) to get a "Happy Lunch" for dinner. While I was standing there giving the lady training on the register our order, I had a $20 in one hand and my wallet in the other. Annde was dancing around and pulling on my arm. Then, she slowly slid the $20 out of my hand. I didn't think anything of it - she loves to pay for things - so when the order was totalled, I looked down at her to tell her to give the woman the money and watched her pat the Donation box for the Ronald McDonald house... inside was my $20. She pointed and said, "It says Please help, Momma. So, I did." (All I can say is thank goodness McD's takes debit cards cause that was all my cash.) I guess sometimes we need to take time to look more closely at things, eh? My 4 year old knows how to be a good person and care about others... that and read "please help"... Good job, Annde! Thanks for reminding me how important it is to help others. Ronald McDonald house is an amazing place. Next time you are in a McD's, maybe you could be like Annde and donate some $$ - AFTER you pay for your meal... They really need it!

The other funny thing that happened was yesterday on the way home from school. You know this one is going to end up in her scrapbook cause it's too funny...
Here's the conversation:
Annde: It's going to be cold tomorrow.
Mom: Really? How do you know? It's been pretty warm this week.
Annde: I just know. It's gonna be cold.
Mom: Wow! You know that? Maybe you should be a meteorologist when you grow up.
Annde: What's that?
Mom: A person who tells others what the weather will be like tomorrow and the rest of the week.
Annde: Hmmm... I guess I could be.
Mom: What about being an Artist? That's what you wanted to be last week...
Annde: Oh Mom... I am an Artist right now!
I am just not painting right now cause I have to go to school today.
Mom: Oh! Are you selling your work?
Annde: Not right now... in a few days, I will be. So you better call your friends to see what pictures they want to buy... I have a lake picture and a dot pictures and a heart picture... I don't know where they all are, but your friends can still buy them...
Mom: They can? That's fabulous!
Annde: I know. I will make some more tomorrow. I am too tired right now...

(She fell asleep immediately after dinner on the couch - at 6:45!) So, here's your notice, friends. Annde's first show will be sometime soon.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Some Great News and other random thoughts...

... So yesterday wasn't too good a day.

The weather was nice - I tried to eat lunch outside but after freezing in the wind, I went back inside after only 20 minutes. Then I had some minor disasters at work - you know the kind that suck up your time and you can't really resolve in a day?!? It's going to be a rough week at work...

Then, the guy who was supposed to come look at and hopefully by the wood burning stove didn't show up - he got stuck in traffic... He's the 3rd person to be interested. I really hope that he buys it because I would love to get it out of my garage.

The girls played outside until almost 8pm. It was so cute!! They built farms in the sand box to celebrate spring coming in 4 days. They used acorn caps for the veggies and fruits, sticks for the apple trees, and leaves for the pear trees. They even attempted to make a barn. Annde had blueberry hill - cause Swiper has to have somewhere to hide... Tee Hee! Look for it, coming soon, to a scrapbook page...

But then I came inside and the kitchen had a minor issue - the sink was completely full of muddy water and the countertop and floor were wet too. Hmmm... It took me quite a bit of time to fix whatever it was blocking the system. Later, I found out that Steve hadn't run the disposal when doing dishes the night before because Annde was asleep (it doesn't wake her up but he didn't realize that) so it backed up with the dishwasher ran... So, after mopping the floor, cleaning the cabinents/sink, and then cleaning the tub (which is where I dumped a bunch of the water) and getting Annde to bed, I sat down on the couch and promptly fell asleep. Whoops!! I was going to scrap last night! Oh well...

So, what's the good news? I got picked for the Design Team at Scrapbookers, Inc! It's my LSS - only about 10 minutes from my house - and they only picked 2 people to add to the current team. I am excited! I loved the Zone but I didn't love the drive... (over 1/2 hr) This store recently moved in and it's right next to the grocery store. Yippee!! It will be a lot of fun to work with the other 6 team members. Stacy and I are going scrapbooking there on Friday! Bring on the fun...

Okay... off to take out the trash.

Happy St. Patrick's Day!!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Pink Sketches #24

Here's the sketch for week 24...

And, here's the layout...

It's such a sweet story... And, I just love these pictures of Aiden. Enjoy!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

So Sketchy Guest Design Team

Hey folks...

For those who read my blog... there's a GDT open for April...

Here's the 411:
For the month of March, anyone who submits a card or page using any of the sketches posted for the month have a chance to win a guest designer position on So Sketchy for April.

Contest details:
For the monthly contest, please email your submissions to: Create a page or card using any of the sketches showcased this month. Please reduce the size of your image to below 150kB.

With your image:
Please include your name, location and title of your creation.

Please identify what sketch number(s) you used for your creations. The So Sketchy Sistas will vote for the best submission and the submission that has the most votes will win the Guest Designer position for April.

NOTE: If would like to be considered for the Guest Designer position, I would love to see you comment on the March creations by the So Sketchy Sistas this month.MARCH CONTEST DUE DATE: All creations are due by the 4th of the following month. (ie: March sketches due April 4.) You will win a copy of the printable images from The Cutting Cafe the Sistas used for their March creations, PLUS two of your choosing and a guest designer spot for the month of April.

If you have won in the last 3 months, you are ineligible for this month's prize. Good luck!!

Please enter today!! :)

Sneak Peeks... and a breakthru.

Annde had a breakthrough at her swim lesson today. I might have found the "button" to push... to get her to join in. We normally go to the library after lessons to pick some books up for the week. Normally, she gets 10 - the kid LOVES books.

So, today on the way to lessons, I put in a new rule: for every time she says No to the teacher, she loses a book. So, if she says no 5 times, she only gets 5 books. If she says no 10 times, no books at all. I reminded her again as she was getting in... At first she balked at putting her head in the water... So, I held up 1 finger. Then, she did it. Next, she didn't want to front float, so I held up 2 fingers... By the end of the session - she had only lost 3 books! It worked so well!! I was so proud of her...

For Tracy - here's you page... or parts of it... AHAHAHA!!!

For the rest of the page, check out Pink Sketches (link right) for the layout tomorrow.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Welcome to the Fleet, USS New York!

Here SHE is, the USS New York, made from the --- World Trade Center !

USS New York was built with 24 tons of scrap steel from the World Trade Center. It is the fifth in a new class of warship - designed for missions that include special operations against terrorists. It will carry a crew of 360 sailors and 700 combat-ready Marines to be delivered ashore by helicopters and assault craft.
Steel from the World Trade Center was melted down in a foundry in Amite , LA to cast the ship's bow section. When it was poured into the molds on Sept 9, 2003, 'those big rough steelworkers treated it with total reverence,' recalled Navy Capt. Kevin Wensing, who was there... 'It was a spiritual moment for everybody there.'Junior Chavers, foundry operations manager, said that when the trade center steel first arrived, he touched it with his hand and the 'hair on my neck stood up.' 'It had a big meaning to it for all of us,' he said. 'They knocked us down but they can't keep us down. We're going to be back.'
The ship's motto? 'Never Forget'

Thursday, March 12, 2009

And... it's about at the end...

This week... it's been dragging along, slowly. I have only scrapbooked one night this week. Too tired, I guess. Work continues to be overwhelming. The end of the quarter is in 2 weeks and I'll find out if we have to repeat this temporary layoff thing for another quarter. I worry about it but I am still so thankful I have a job - even if I am completely exhausted all the time.

To relax, I've been reading instead. Finished 3 books since Saturday. They weren't earth shattering literature, just chick lit or suspense... but sometimes you've got to take a break from your habits to renew that creative streak.

I do have to say though that last night, I did a truly great page. My friend Tracy is going to be excited because it's for her. She routinely gives me her pictures to scrapbook. It's helping to "catch up" those memories she wants to record and it gives me some variety in what I scrapbook. I can't post it just yet though because it's my layout for Pink Sketches. (Sorry, Tracy - you'll have to wait until Sunday!)

Instead, you'll have to enjoy a 2 page layout that I did on Sunday instead... It was about Annde "searching for Santa"... from receiving a webcam message from him to leaving oats outside and cookies/carrots/milk instead... Annde was super excited about the jolly Santa.

That's all for now.. Have fun, folks, and thanks for checking in!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

How much do you know about St. Patrick's Day?

Me - not much... in fact, I know so little that I REALLY flunked this quiz. I know, I know... I'm appalled and probably should lose parent points on not knowing the origin of the holiday. (Although I'm German and Czech so I'm at least not disregarding my heritage!)

Try it for yourself and see how you do:

I sure don't have the luck of the Irish, eh? :)

Monday, March 9, 2009

Pink Sketches #23

I had a lot of fun scrapbooking with Tracy on Saturday night... Jessica came over too and it was good to see her. I didn't get a ton done but I did do a couple of layouts. I just spent too much time obsessing over one layout.

Sunday was Zoe's birthday party at the pool. We had a lot of fun - Annde and I swam for over an hour. I think that the temperature of the water makes a HUGE difference on Annde's willingness to participate. I also think that trust comes into play as well. She is still balking at putting her face in the water and jumping off the side. If anyone has an ideas on how to overcome those two things, let me know... She's so stubborn and I am running out of ideas.

Here's my Pink Sketches layout of the week:

Products used: paper (Reminisce, Scenic Route, Heidi Swapp), stickers (Reminisce, Jenni Bowlin, 7 Gypsies), die cut felt filmstrip (Prima), chipboard (Scenic Route), adhesive (pop dots, Kokuyo), and pen (Zig).

Well, off to make the lunches. Have a good day everyone...

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Rounding up for Kindergarten

So, this week was Kindergarten Roundup for the parents. We were very excited to go and see all the fun things that Annde will be learning next year. They showed us a movie about what a typical day involves and talked about all the fun things that they will be doing this year. I have to say that I am very happy with our choice! They really focus on writing, reading, and art in this class, in addition to Science, Social Studies, and the typical specials (art, music, gym, computers, library, and Spanish). They also do a lot of things with the 5th graders, which I think is really cool (book buddies, lunch buddies...) I think that Annde is going to be very happy there. Especially since she already knows several people in her classroom. I really hope she gets put in a room with Zoe. They play so well together.

Well, I am off to scrap tonight with Tracy - Color Me Daisy is having a Dr. Seuss Cyber Crop - and just relax. It should make up for my frustrating morning at swim lessons. If she didn't need to learn to swim for the boat... Man! She can be sooo stubborn!

Here's a sneak peak at my layout that will be up tomorrow at Pink Sketches...

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Transformer Hoax in Detroit

For all of those of you who have heard the following tale of Police Transforming vehicles, please know that this is a urban legend. Trust me, this state doesn't have the money to pay for these fancy vehicles! Besides, one of the news channels confirmed it was a hoax with multiple police forces and the State Police....

Spring is Coming!
Operation Yellow JacketLook out for MI-DOT trucks parked along the road or suddenly appearing behind you pacing you - it could be a Trooper driving the truck. Called 'Operation Yellow Jacket', each Michigan State Police District has a truck cleaned up and ready to go! These trucks have specially modified engines that can virtually catapult the truck from snow-plow speed to intercept speed in seconds. And when the engine boost kicks in, the warning lights automatically change from flashing yellow to the dreaded red and blue! Starting March 1, 2009, Michigan will launch a 31 day speeding ticket frenzy. The state estimates that $9 million dollars will be generated in speeding tickets, with an additional $3.5 million in revenue for failure to wear a seatbelt. $1 million will go to pay state troopers overtime. There will be 47 state troopers on duty at all times patrolling the main intersections and highways with the highest rates of speeding. They are the following:

I-75, especially from the Ohio line north to Woodhaven, and again from Auburn Hills to Flint
I-96 east and west in its entirety
I-275 north/south
I-675 north/south
I-94 east and west from Battle Creek to Jackson
I-696 east and west in its entirety
I-196 east and west
US-131 north and south
I-69 east and west from Lansing to Flint and again from Flint eastward to Port Huron.
I-69 north and south from I-94 to Lansing
M-14 east and west from I-94 to I-275

M-39 from I-94 to I-96 going to and from Dearborn
M-59, especially from Pontiac to Utica , and from Utica east US -10 from Midland to Bay City
US-23 from I-96 to Flint US-27 from Lansing to Mt. Pleasant
5 mph above the limit can justify a ticket and every state trooper is supposed to pull a car over and write a ticket every 10 to 20 minutes. They have issued 30 brand new unmarked Dodge Charger Police cruisers and canceled all vacation time. In addition, they are bringing in all of their part timers on full time for the month. This nonsense will conclude on April 1.
Driving Ticket fine increase in MI: Starting on January 15th, the price of a ticket for violation of MI Law 39:3-29 (failure to show your driver's license, registration, or proof of insurance card at the time you are stopped) went from $44.00 to $173.00. Please make sure your vehicles have the proper documents in them. If you jump in the car to run to the store and forget your wallet with your license in it and you are stopped.... Oh well... you just spent $173. And the fine for not having all three documents is $519!!!

While we should all be following the traffic laws which would prevent you from being pulled over to begin with, please note that these transforming MDOT cars don't exist, to the sadness of children all over Detroit who believe in Transformers. Besides, the highways listed are pretty much every highway in the Metro Detroit area - where do they plan on getting all those cops based on reduced budget, layoffs for officers, and the normal crime rates of a major metropolitan area? It is also miraculous that this list is identical to the last speed trap hoax from last year...

So Sketchy again...

So, Ally gave me this sketch and some great images by The Cutting Cafe to do a page... I surprised her and did TWO, very different pages...
So, here's the start point:
And, here's my first page. I didn't take any pictures on Valentine's Day this year. Instead, I took some pictures of what we exchanged to show our affection. There was a really great quote on the card that Annde gave me so I used that as my journaling... I mimicked the sketch in that there are 3 pictures and a journaling block, but I didn't use round. Then, I took the the 3 circles and mirrored it into the diamonds at the top. I used both the round sentiments and the heart cupcake by Cutting Cafe to jazz it up.Products used: Paper (CTMH, Doodlebug, Glitz, American Craft), Heidi Swapp diamonds, Kaiser pearls, Thickers, Stickles, Jenni Bowlin stickers, Creative Imaginations flowers, Cutting Cafe images, misc gel pen, and Kokuyo adhesive.

This second page is about me. There's this list going around that you answer your feelings in. For example, it has I love..., I cry..., I sing..., I wonder...., I wish..., and so on. I filled the list out and put it on the blog back in November of last year but always thought it would be a cool topic to do. So, the circles just gave me that ability. I spaced them (there's about 35), into 4 journaling circles and then used some wallet sized pictures and this FABULOUS Doodlebug flocked paper as a background. Sorry, there's a lot of reflection in the picture but I wanted to show the irridescence in the butterflies. Trust me - the colors are REALLY bright on this page. Products used: Close to My Heart paper, Doodlebug paper, Cutting Cafe image, DMC floss, Making Memories letters, Craft n Craftin stickers, Oriental Trading arrow brad, Glaze pens by Sakura, Microsoft Word, and Kokuyo adhesive.

Also - I'm hosting the challenges this month at Coordinates Collections... Head on over there and see all the fun you can have for free stuff! There's a guest design team contest, a March contest about using Green, and my 4 challenges.. All you have to do is upload into the gallery in the right folder and post a link in the message board thread for the contest and you're entered! Check it out here: Coordinates Collections

Well... I'm off to get stuff done. Have a great day!

Monday, March 2, 2009

It's a So Sketchy start to March

My layout just happened to be picked to lead out the month of Sketches over at So Sketchy. Here's the sketch...

... and my layout:

Don't worry! All pictures were taken while sitting at a stop light. Annde and I spend a lot of time together in the car and she can be very silly at times when I check on her in the rearview mirror at stop lights. So, on this day, at each of the 3 stop lights, I took a picture of her face in the mirror... It says a lot about her personality...

Products used: Paper (CTMH, Sandylion, Bazzill), Ribbon (Basic Grey, misc), Thread (DMC), Hearts (Heidi Swapp), Pins (CTMH), Arrow & Tags (Little Yellow Bicycle), Ink (Zig, Uniball, Sharpie, Sakura), Stickers (American Crafts) and Adhesive (Kokuyo, Popdots)