Wednesday, September 29, 2010

It's a Sick Day!!

So, Annde was under the weather today, forcing me to take a half day off from work. Since she was laying on the couch watching Phineous and Ferb or iCarly, I made the decision to have a 'sick day' too... only mine was to scrap!

I decided to do a layout on school since that's where Annde was supposed to be:

It's documenting Annde's 1st day of 1st grade. Hope you like!! Back to the sick kid upstairs... :)

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Scrapbook Night - Birthday Crop

So, Saturday night, I finally got out for a mommy playdate. It was awesome to be able to spend some time scrapbooking with friends and not worrying about which kid was doing something that she shouldn't. Steve's been working insane hours so I have been doing a lot of the parenting / chores / etc. I couldn't tell you how good it felt to walk outside and take a deep breath and have something fun like this to look forward too. Sometimes, that couple of hours with the girls and no kids is just priceless, you know?

So, I won a ton of stuff - lots of organizational containers which I can easily find usages for - in addition to stickers, prima flowers, christmas card kits, and more. I also got some new CTMH stuff and a new purse from Thirty One (? I think that is the name of the company - very cute though!!).

The best part - my scrapbooking mojo is back! I did a little mini-album on CTMH's circle chipboard album (forgot to take pics before I wrapped it) and it came out darling! It took me about an hour and I took on the Use my Stash challenge and created it from the leftovers from my Michigan Memorial Day album.

Here's the pages I got done...
This one is one of my favorites! The pictures are so cute and I love the tag that says, "Growing like a weed" which Meg certainly is! She's such a happy baby...

I had a ton of fun with the glitter glue... I applied it to the butterflies, the dandelions, and the title letters. I look the look. The picture below just doesn't do it justice.
Then I did a few about Annde's school this year. The first one was back to school night and my hopes that she finds a way to like her new class. Not so great so far but she's trying pretty hard. I just love this pose of her on the bench outside. Very Annde-like!
This one is Annde's best friend, Delaney. I love this picture of them too!! They are so cute together!! My sister says to hold on to it and if they go to the same high school and are still friends, it would be cute in the yearbook. I couldn't agree more! I took some inspiration from the current challenge over at PageMaps for this layout:

My last layout is my favorite! It's a 2-pager - shocker from me, I know - that uses boy colors. Yikes!! No pink or bright colors either!! But, I absolutely love this page. It was for a challenge over at Sketchy Thursdays - they have great sketches if you like play with them - and I was totally inspired because I took over 100 pictures during that hike. I love how I got 21 on this layout and they are all the perfect size to show what I wanted to convey.

Here's some closeups: I put a bit of glitter glue on the water scenes to "pop" them a bit from the people pictures.

Steve and I both love this look from Meghan - Sooooo cute with that confused look and big blue eyes!

I love this kit that I bought from Peachy Cheap - it was a steal and it came with the cutest embellishments. I am so glad that I bought the boy kit instead of girl. It's a great change for me.

That's all for now. The rest of the weekend was normal and mundane.

Just a quick note for my sister - I know you're having a rough time but keep your head up. We love and support you. Find some inner peace. I believe in you and I know others do too. Believe in yourself too! Don't let what you think others thing change who you are. You be the best Susan you can! Okay?!?! I love you, Sister!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Our first goal!

So, we decided to sign Annde up for one more term of soccer. Last season (spring) was such a disaster! We would start with the tantrum the minute I said that it was time for practice. She would cry about going to games. Annde HATED it. I was afraid she really hated the sport, which I spent so many years playing myself, so when I talked to her about it before signing her up again, I was surprised she wanted to play. Her requirement? Not the same team. The coach last year was horrible. I can say that as I have been around coaches for a long time. The only thing he cared about was scoring and stopping them from scoring. He often mentioned that he thought it sucked that they don't keep score at this age. And, that's how he coached the team. We would practice scoring in relay teams. Loser runs a lap. The girls touch the ball (to get it out of the net) - run a lap. He would congratulate the girls during/after the game for scoring (of which Annde never did) even if they took the ball away from their own teammate to do it. We made her finish the season so she understood that if you agree to be a part of a team, you follow through. Needless to say, I was thankful when the season was done.

This year, to avoid that coach entirely (who emailed me to find out why Annde was playing, by the way - my response was that we decided to play in a closer league...), I signed up for Burke Athletic Club. A bit more expensive (with the uniforms) but SOOOO much better. Annde has already learned to properly dribble, how to stop the ball and change direction, throw the ball in, head the ball, and how to play as a team by spreading out and passing. They are obviously just starting out (this is week 3) but the focus is on team, not scoring. It makes me happy! And Annde seems to be enjoying it too... The two coaches are FABULOUS!! They take the time to work with the girls and there's lots of individual praise. The only laps they run are for warm-up and the practice, while chaotic at times, is always fun.

Annde loves to run so whenever she gets an opening like this, she's super fast. When there's s crowd around the ball, she tends to back off...

I love her face in this pic. The girl was elbowing her to keep her away from the ball - Annde did take it from her, by the way.
Even Meg enjoys the games!!

Annde didn't score once all last season. On Saturday's game, she got her first goal. She was very surprised it went in. She just stood there, turned to look at me, and smiled like, "Did that really go in?" Her confidence went way up and she seemed to be more into it. I hope this carries on to next week...

We might not sign up again in the Spring if Annde doesn't want to, but I am glad she's having a good time now.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Another Layout to share

As part of my guest Design Team role this month for All About Me Challenge Blog, I was tasked with doing a layout based on ONE WORD to describe myself. Hmm... there are a ton I could use: Smart-alleck, stubborn, independant... the list could go on and on. But, instead I took a different approach: I picked the word TALL.

Now, all of you who know me personally know that I am tall, in a freakish- off the height chart, less than 1% of US population - way. When the average woman is 5'3" and average man is 5'10", being 6'3" is always a guarenteed conversation starter. But, I have never put this into a layout for my All About Me book.

So, I grabbed Annde to take a picture. I was reading on Becky Higgin's blog about taking pictures from different viewpoints so I had Annde take a picture of me from Meghan's view (aka lying on the floor). YIKES! That's not too flattering a picture. I would scare the crap out of me if I was Meghan. But, the picture tells the story of how tall I am so I decided to use it anyway. Here's the layout I came up with:

Journaling: While I started out @ just 4 pounds, I've grown as TALL as a tree. I love being super tall - it makes me unique! I can always reach things and I never get lost in a crowd. I was always picked quickly for sports/PE teams. Blocking my view is hard to do! I really hope I pass this trait on to my daughters. (Hopefully they find a tall man to fall in love with like Dad.)

Hope you like! Tonight is Back-To-School night so I am excited to see Annde in her classroom. She also did so well with Soccer this week - pictures to follow - that I am very happy we switched teams/coaches. :)

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Okay, so I love to read other scrapbook blogs for inspiration but this woman stole my dream scrapbook room and built it in her house...
Just Kidding!
But, this is definitely what I would have made if I had no concerns with money, space, or living in a rental... it's simply gorgeous!!

Dream Scrapbook Room

NOTE to Hubby: take a look cause I would love this when we finally get in to our own house and win the lottery. I would even share it with the girls - they could have their own little corner... :) tee hee

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

First Week of School - We survived!!

Well. we officially survived the first week of school. As usual, it contained plenty of drama but I think we came out on the flipside.

I took Annde to the grocery store and she had a bunch of fun picking out stuff that she wanted in her lunch box. I had fun putting together these little love notes (free and totally cute downloads from Eighteen25 and Skip to My Lou) each day. I actually got a few back at the end of the day to put in her scrapbook!) I know she appreciated them, even if she did spell Sunny D on one!

She also needed a 'labeled' lunch box, backpack, scissors, and a clipboard. Since she picked out the lunch box and backpack, there wasn't much I could do. Scissors personalization included a little tag and some ribbon. But the clipboard - well, I could do something with that! Annde chose a green one at the store and expressed a desire for 'butterflies or flowers' on it. I took some CTMH paper that's one of my favorite designs and attached it to the flip side so the writing surface would still be smooth and flat. Then, I added some sticker ribbons to the top and bottom (where the paper wouldn't sit) and then some decoration to the clip. I wanted to put Anndelyn but Annde wanted Annde P. (Why I don't know... there are no other Annde's in her class) She absolutely loves it.
So, now that the backpack is packed and ready to go, so is Annde. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE those pink converse tennis shoes. They are SOOOOO me 25 years ago. (I had them in blue, green, yellow, and pink myself.) Notice something else? Annde's got glasses now. Hot pink ones to be exact! She barely needs them - they are the lowest prescription you can get - but with our eyes, we know she's going to have them for a long time. She's not so good at wearing them - and she lost them on Day 2 but found them on Day 3 - but she's working on it.
Aren't they just adorable? Meghan was so excited for Anndelyn and Annde was excited that Meghan's little outfit matched her's. (I didn't think it would fit in time - it's a 24 mo - but that was silly because it fit perfectly)
We might look goofy and Meg might be confused, but I love this picture! (Man, Annde looks like Steve and Meg looks like me!)
This week promises to be even more exciting, with lots of soccer, start of Dance & Brownies, and Back to School night. Yikes! More to come, including some cute and easy scrap projects and a DT layout...

A bunch of Billy Goats are we!

This weekend, we went to Great Falls, in MA. It was BEAUTIFUL - a perfect day for hiking and the views were breath-taking. No, it's not like Niagara - there isn't one huge falls, but there are a bunch of little waterfalls that are really nice... The park straddles the states of Virginia and Maryland, but we went to the Maryland side as it was supposed to be more picturesque.

We started out on the towline. It's about 1.5 miles and mostly flat with a few bridges. Great bike path with lots of spots to take pictures.
Then we got to the top of the falls. I had already taken about 100 pictures by now. (seriously!) Here's one of my favorites...On the way back, we saw this sign for a billy goat path. One of my friends, Sarah, had recommended it. We saw an older couple coming off the trail so we said, what the heck! This was how it started... It was supposed to be 1.7 miles of hiking along the edge of the rock face. It said that there were some extreme areas, but that couple didn't look to winded so, on we went.
Annde was in heaven. She LOVES to hike... we must have told her to slow down, be careful or "red light" 200 times over this hike.
Meghan apparently knew better.
After the first hour, we took a small break on the edge. Annde was having a blast. Steve, well, he was questioning our sanity but he was a good sport about it.
Then, we saw the Crevice. Yep, we had to hike up it. Annde, no problem. Steve, well, he did good...
Meghan and I - Steve thought the look on Meg's face was priceless... like, "What are we doing?!?! I am not a Billy Goat!' (Look closely, she has a death grip on the strap of the backpack...)
And once you go up, you must come back down. We did this face too...
Finally, 3.5 hours later with only one fall (Annde face-planted when she didn't see a rock but she was fine), we came out the other side. This was her "No more pictures Mom!" face.
Tee Hee!! I hope you enjoyed. More pictures to come later of the first day of school and the only school supply they let me decorate.

Friday, September 3, 2010

10 Years and I would do it again...

Today is our 10 year anniversary. It's so hard to believe that 10 years ago, we got married. It was such an awesome day - it feels like last week. I looked back at these pictures last night and the first thought was, "Dang! We look so young?" followed by "Wow, I had a lot of hair!" It was such an amazing time, spent with the whole family and the majority of our friends. When I think back to the moment when my Grandfather stood up to light the candle, I still tear up. When I think back to the moment when Steve had to be reminded to say, "in sickness and health 'til death do us part", I laugh. When I remember the joke Chris Blair put on the wedding video, I crack up. For everyone who was there at the wedding, thank you for spending our weekend with us. For everyone who has been with us for the last 10 years, thank you for making our lives more memorable.

And for Steve, my soul mate, I have been truly blessed to spend these 10 years with you. You've stood by me for all kinds of experiences, good and bad. You've made me laugh and stayed with me while I cried. Together, we've made a family that completes our circle. I wouldn't trade a single second for anything, including $1,000,000 winning lottery ticket (okay, maybe that one second in the year 3 (tee hee... j/k) but I would spend most of the money with you, before I take Tracy and all my sisters/good friends on a girls weekend full of scrapbooking, laughter, and margaritas!). Seriously, you've helped me grow into the woman I am today, one that I am proud to be as a role model for our girls. Thank you and I love you!

And, just for fun, here's my 'most memorable' 10 things from the last 10 years (in no particular order):
1. Getting married! :) (and the honeymoon, of course)

2. Birth of Anndelyn

3. Birth of Meghan

4. Cruise to Mexico with Kevin W and the Salswedals... Fabulous time!

5. Cruise to Jamaica / Grand Cayman - we had a ton of fun on this one

6. 2009 Men's College Basketball Final 4 weekend

7. Moving to Virginia and starting my new job with the Navy

8. Anndelyn starting Kindergarten

9. Trip to NM for Katie's wedding

10. Triplet weekend / wine tasting at Disney World

There are other really amazing things that didn't make the list, like the annual Race for the Cure (Detroit) with our friends, the trip to VA beach with Anndelyn, the trip to Wisconsin for Jane's wedding, getting published multiple times for my scrapbooking, being selected for various scrapbooking DTs, and other trips around the US... The list goes on and on... That's one reason I scrapbook - to remember all the great times and events.

I challenge you to think back 10 years and come up with your own Top 10 list. As for me, I be drinking margaritas at sundown! (well, after soccer practice :) )

Meeting your Teacher, even if it's the wrong one...

Today was the big "Meet Your Teacher" day at White Oaks. Very chaotic as they have EVERYONE come in a 1 hour time slot to not only find out who's in what class but meet the teachers, turn in supplies, sign up for stuff, etc... I don't particularly like the format but it's important to Annde so we go. She got up 2 hours early this morning because she was so excited. She wanted Ms. Austin and to be with Delaney, Megan C, and Sophie. What she got was Ms. Barrow and NONE of her friends. They are all in Ms. Austin's class. Instead, she got Anthony (her love-hate relationship) and a nice new girl, Ashley, to sit next too. I quit taking pictures at this point because it broke my heart to see her tears.

Anywho - before we took a couple of shots around the school. Annde's always up for an impromptu modeling session.
Here's her in front of the school...
... And sitting on the little bench in front of the school. (Love those weeds!)
And right next to the front door...
This is Delaney - her BFF. They are so cute together!!
Even if they are super silly most of the time...
I hope that this year goes better than expected. I wasn't too impressed the interaction so far with her teacher. Annde's performs wonderfully and above expectations when she's in a warm environment with an encouraging teacher, like Ms. Atkinson and Ms. Silva from last year. Ms. Barrow is not that kind of teacher (found out from other parents who had her last year). Ms. Barrow also doesn't seem to be too excited she's teaching 1st grade instead of 3rd grade. I am not too happy that her class is in the 2nd/3rd grade pod instead of the K/1st grade pod where the other 2 are. Hopefully they will correct that so that Annde gets to see her friends a bit more often. It might be a very long year...

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Join us at All About Me Challenges

I am really excited because today starts a fun month for me. To start with, I am the guest design team member over at All About Me challenge blog. The first theme that we are working with this month is our Morning Routines. I have been dying to do this for a while so I already knew exactly what I was going to do. This page documents how quickly I get things done in the morning (I even have time to blog! :) ) and then how much I get inspiration from the drive into work. There's just something so amazing about passing the Pentagon, turning a corner, and seeing the Washington Monument glistening in the red sunrise ahead! I hope that I never get to a point where it fails to inspire me daily...Anyway, here's the layout...

So, head on over to All About Me and check out the other DT members layouts. Very cool stuff!! Then grab your supplies and join us... This month AAM is being sponsored by Lucky Girls Crafts (Kit Club)!
Learn more about Lucky Girl by clicking here and we will also be doing a special feature of them on Monday! Our September Winner will receive a $20 gift certificate along with some fabulous goodies... now who will be the "lucky girl"??

As usual, we also have a sketch to add one more inspiration to our challenge!
This month we have a lovely sketch by Michelle McClung (courtesy of ScrapStreet!). We'd love to see what you girls will create with it.
(Just a note for entering for the prize: Please remember that you'd need to link your work to AAM using inlinkz to be able to run for the prize. When using it, please avoid linking it to your blog - instead of it, you should include a direct link of your layout ok?)


Lots more coming up this week with the start of school, our 10 year anniversary, and Annde starting soccer again on Friday (I can't believe we are going to get 2 seasons out of 1 pair of shoes!)... Plus Annde has a little surprise for you all too. AND there will be more scrappy fun throughout the month!

Have a great day, everyone!