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April 2006
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June 2006

Strangely obsessed with the washing machine.

Prod_6777_1First, allow me to thank Maytag for making my laundry days so much easier! I absolutely love my washer and dryer/drying center and actually love to do laundry, now!

The funny part is that I wonder if I am the only psycho out there that is strangely obsessed with watching the clothes in the washer through the front window of the washer door? Am I a weirdo? I throw the clothes into the washer, start it up, and wait while the soap and water pour in. Then I stand there and watch the clothes tumble around for a good 5 - 10 minutes. Boy, do I have no life or what? I don't know, it is just strangely fascinating. OK, I concede that I am an odd bird.Dryermaytagcabmce8000a

I adore this drying center! I absolutely NEVER put shirts in the dryer because I got totally fed up with shrinkage, etc. so I have always just hung the wet shirts on hangers in various places to dry. Funny thing is that in the old house, when we evacuated for Katrina, I hung up a few pieces of clothing from the washer before we left. When we got back, the one ceiling fan that was still hanging in the living room still had a clothes hanger on it from the shirt that I had hung up there to dry. It is funny to think about, now. LOL! So this "drying center" has been my lifesaver! You can lay out sweaters on the screen racks, or you can remove the racks and just hang clothes. I put the heat on Extra Low and let them dry! The wrinkles shake right out, and you can even add fragrance to the clothes with a special setting along with a water bottle that you can add a few drops of perfume/cologne to! Matthew has discovered that feature! LOL! So no, I don't work for Maytag (LOL!) but I certainly love this set.

Webster_brother_typewriterYesterday we went to a thrift store with my mother-in-law as she was looking for something specific. Domonique found an old Brother typewriter (gasp!) - yes, one with the metal keys that actually dings at the end of the line and slides back over again! She had NEVER SEEN ONE! She must have jumped a mile when the carriage returned and made the loud "DING!" - I thought I was going to wet myself from laughing so hard! Things you take for granted that your kids have never seen... and I told her "Yes, I actually typed on one of those when I was a kid!" and she gave me a look of horror! However, she sat in the floor with it and played with it for a good ten minutes or so. It reminded me how important it is to document the things that demonstrate today's technology for our kids to remember.

Back again later - have some other random musings on my mind! Thanks for reading!

And today, I give you this...

IvycottageSomeone wrote me and asked me about some of my earliest pages that I ever had published. Well here is one of them. This was the very first page I ever actually saw in print (although it wasn't the first one I had published, technically) and this appeared in "Ivy Cottage Creations" (which is now Scrapbook Trends, of course!). Such a simple page. Geesh. I look back at it now and think, "Wow, they wanted THAT?!?" because it just seems so, well, simple!

I hope all of you are having a great Memorial Day weekend! Mine has been pretty good, other than Matthew getting over a sinus infection and Domonique getting fried to a crisp out at Hurricane Harbor water park (yeah, the name IS pretty fun, considering!) because I bought her a huge bottle of SPF 50 sunblock to take with her, and someone stole it! She borrowed a friend's SPF 10 which of course, didn't help a whole lot, but today her shoulders are blistered some. I feel so badly for her, because she has been miserable all weekend. We did the whole bathing in vinegar/burn cream/aloe vera/ibuprofen thing and it is finally starting to get better.

So a few days ago, we find a SCORPION in our bathroom! HELLO!!! Why didn't anyone warn me about these things in Texas? Monica? Lisa? Amy? LOL!!! Now I am not afraid of them; as a matter of fact, growing up in Oklahoma, I used to poke sticks at them when I was a kid just to watch their tails stick up, but I don't like the fact that #1. They are poisonous and #2. He was inhabiting my bathroom! I called our exterminator and demanded that they come back out and DO SOMETHING! So Wednesday morning, they will be back. Ya know, I can handle the scorpions, but if I see big, nasty spiders, I can assure you that some other living arrangements will have to be made. It will be either ME or THEM. LOL!

Ok, gotta package a layout to ship out Tuesday and get some projects finished. By the way, if you feel so inclined, please say a prayer for a really dear friend of mine who is having some difficulties in her life right now. She is a very special person and I hope that things get easier for her. 

Happy Memorial Day, everybody, and if you are missing loved ones, I hope that you find peace and comfort while reflecting on the void. I will be thinking of my step dad and my cousin, whom I miss dearly.

Thought I forgot about ya, huh?

PlaymatesforevereditSorry for not updating over the weekend! This weekend was crazy but lots of fun! We went to a Hawaiian Luau party for some friends of ours, then a neighborhood pool party on Saturday. We have made so many terrific friends here in Texas, and every weekend for the last month we have been to one social event or another. This coming Friday night, we have been invited to a Texas Hold'Em poker night at the house of some friends, and the following weekend we have another party to attend plus Alex's 8th birthday! Lots of fun coming up.  :) We just love it here!

This is a layout I did for the new Scrapbooks, Etc. Baby idea book so I thought I would share it with you here. Yes, yes, I know, yet another page with a black background. The good news is that I am almost out of black cardstock, and I have promised myself that I will find a new favorite color.  :) Anyhow, if you don't have this idea book, it is a MUST have! Even if you have no baby photos to scrap, just the design ideas are amazing. A shout-out to my buddy Jill who has her very first published layout in this idea book!

Public Service Announcement: I have learned that if you stash a giant bag of M&M's next to the computer, you WILL eat them. Bad, bad idea. I probably gained two pounds this week just looking at them; sniffing their chocolate-yness, and finally succumbing to the little voices from the bag that called out to me to devour each little colored treat. *sigh* Alas, tomorrow I am back to walking around the neighborhood with my lil' poochie for some much-needed exercise.

Like Home Depot? Wanna save 10% off your next shopping trip there? Fill out this form to have a 10% coupon mailed to you. :) I got mine in today! I also got my giant (two feet tall!) wooden letter in from Janna today - run and get yours! They are awesome! I haven't decided how I am going to alter mine yet, but I know it will go in my scrap studio. I think I may get a big "D" for Domonique's room, too!

Here is a cool challenge from the 2 Peas board:

Random YOU:
Fave hair style you ever had: The way it is now - just long and natural curls.
Fave song on the radio you just love right now: Oh gosh, that would have to be "So Sick" Remix with Ne-Yo and LL Cool J.  :)
Fave tv show: Well, if you can actually catch me watching TV, it would probably be something like "Deal or No Deal". I hardly ever watch TV. I usually just peek over the shoulder of someone else watching it and catch little bits and pieces of whatever is on.
Fave musical artist: Male: Phil Collins       Female: A tie between Madonna, Gwen Stefani, and Celine Dion.
Fave thing to eat for supper: Food. No seriously, anything pasta! I think I lived in Italy in a past life or something.
Fave movie: Top Gun. Pretty nerdy, huh?
Best date you ever went on: My first date with Noel. It was amazing!
Your most fave friend: I would probably have to say my Grandma.

Ok, I am off to get my nightly bowl of cereal, then crash.  :) Thanks for reading my gibberish.  :)

Murphy's laws are alive and kickin'.

Kepi14So just who the heck is Murphy, anyway, and can I strangle him?!?

What a day.

"Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong."

First, we have been upgrading servers so that we can provide much faster service for Scrapsubmit, etc. and the server upgrade took way longer than anticipated. We were up all night last night and had about 45 minutes of sleep this morning, after trying to get everything in order. As soon as we finally tried to get some sleep, the phone rings. It was Alex's school, telling us that he could not participate in Field Day today unless he was wearing tennis shoes, and that his sandals he was wearing simply would not cut it. Wearily, we got dressed and ran his sneakers up to the school and dropped them off for him. First crisis averted.

Then, after school, Alex came home proudly wearing his Field Day T-shirt that we bought for him from the school. He walks in and exclaims, "Mama, Daddy, look at the back of my shirt! I had three friends sign it!" and he was all proud. He turned around, showing us the back of his shirt, and there in big, black sharpie letters was the name "Brandon", and right below it, "Brandon" had decided to write F**K!!

ON Alex's SHIRT!!

At this point, we realized that Alex had no idea what was written, so we feigned delight and carefully asked him a few questions about who this "Brandon" kid was and what teacher he had. After extracting some information, I talked him into changing his shirt and going outside to play while I immediately called the school. The principal asked us to bring it up there at once so they could "keep it as evidence" and look into it. I told them that I realize they may not be able to force the parents to pay for his shirt, but irregardless, I wanted to make sure that I could purchase another one, if needed, so that Alex would still have his Field Day souvenir.

Can you BELIEVE some of these kids nowadays? And how in the world did he manage to walk around school with a glaring four letter word like that in big black sharpie letters on his shirt without being noticed? It reminded me of the time when I was in 8th grade and someone wrote a very foul-mouthed joke in my yearbook, taking up an entire page. I was mortified that my parents would read it, and I ended up having to cut a piece of typing paper and gluing it over the joke so they would not see it. I could understand something like this coming from a middle schooler, but a second grader??

Next, we had to get some papers notarized and faxed by 3 PM and everywhere we went to find a notary, they were either gone for lunch, out of town, or not in the office. After finally finding a notary, we got the papers faxed at about 2:55 PM. Talk about cutting it close! So we then decided to get a nice, cold Diet Pepsi and head home. On the way to Taco Bell to get our Diet Pepsi, the air conditioner belt on our Tahoe broke. It was 101 outside in Frisco at approximately 3 PM. When we got back home, our clothes were soaked from sweating and we literally peeled ourselves off of the seats to get out of the truck!

Anyhow, the server upgrade is complete, we bought a replacement belt for the Tahoe, and the principal will get back to us on Monday about Alex's shirt. Perhaps tonight I can actually get a little bit of sleep. Definitely a day where anything that could go wrong most certainly did.

  • Darn that Murphy!

So how was YOUR day?  :)

Cbowoodcutoranges CbowoodcutpinksCbowoodcutbluesCbowoodcutbw_1
I am absolutely LOVING the new Chatterbox graphic rub-ons! You must get some of these! All different patterns - all different colors! Want to see the rest of them and buy your own? Click here! All the colors and patterns are totally YUMMILICIOUS! I really love the rosy ones.

I am so thankful for my friends.

  • You all rock!

School is out, here, in 6 more days. The kids are so ready for the break. I can't wait to hit the pool with them every day.

I sent out the information to everyone who inquired about the writing opportunities for the Chicken Soup series - let me know if I missed you!

CHA is coming and I am BEYOND excited! I can't wait to see so many of you and feast my eyes upon the new stuff! If you will be going to CHA, drop me a note so we can get together!

Ok, I think I am going to bed!

Please say a few prayers. :)

BolthousecarrotI am totally addicted to this carrot juice! It is so awesome - tastes just like crunching a whole bag of fresh baby carrots! If you are a carrot fan, this stuff is to die for, and healthy too. I am trying to make sure I get enough vitamins in since I am trying to lose some of this tubbo hiney that has been velcro'd to the chair as of late. I did get out and take a walk this evening, and have done tons of laundry - does that count? LOL! Of course, the brownie I that sneaked in probably was a little bit detrimental. *sigh* BUT oh was it tasty! I need to buy a bathroom scale so I can at least track my progress (or lack thereof!). Maybe ignorance is bliss... then again, since my jeans are a bit tight in the thighs, maybe not. LOL!

I have done a lot of thinking in my personal life about the type of people I associate with - both in the scrapbooking industry and out of it, and have come to the conclusion that I need to "clean house", so to speak. This article has really opened my eyes about a few things; that I have allowed "toxic" people to hold me back and control my thoughts, actions and emotions. I have made myself a promise to make an effort to seek out and surround myself with positive people and rid myself (as much as possible) of the toxic relationships that stress me.

Well, it sounds like I have cleanup duty calling again! If you got this far, thanks for reading.  :)

Chicken Soup for the Scrapbooker's Soul

LovetoyouI received this note/autograph today along with my official acceptance letter for Chicken Soup for the Scrapbooker's Soul book, to be released around July 30th if this year. I am really excited about this book and having a part in it, but I am even more excited for my dear friend, Allison, who is the writer for the book! She has worked so hard on putting it together! So Allison, here's to you - oh, and, I love you too, girl!

A true friend indeed.  :) The world needs more like you! 

My story for the book is about a promise that I made to my stepdad before he passed away, and I can't wait for all of you to read it. I hope it touches your heart and makes you think a little. I am also very excited about reading all the other inspiring stories - I just know this book will be amazing! There are some other writing opportunities for the Chicken Soup books, as well. If you would like more information, please e-mail me! I would be happy to send you some details!

And now I am off to scrapbook - lots of fun stuff to work on! More to come this evening!

Friends. Thank you!

BearthankyouHave you ever had a friend that you thought was truly your friend, only to find out that they had other motives for being nice to you?

Well, this has happened to me.

So for those of you who have been my true friend, this "thank you" is for you!  truly appreciate you.

I am not one to trust easily, so when I finally do, I trust with all my heart. I really stay loyal to my friends. That is just me. I believe that friendship is very important, although sometimes I do tend to get caught up in life and forget to return e-mails and phone calls. LOL! I am getting better about that, though!

Anyhow, it is just really disappointing to trust someone so much and find out that they are completely different than what you thought they were. But enough about that.

I had a great Mother's Day!! My kids brought me breakfast in bed: Red-colored pancakes, two eggs, two slices of toast with cream cheese or butter (my choice!) and a glass of my favorite juice - grapefruit juice! It was really awesome! We spent a great day together, and I am just so thankful for them. I hope that all of you had a great day, too, whether it was with your own kids or with your mom, or both!

Ok, off to work on an assignment I just received! So excited about it! I will update later today with some pictures!  :)

Only three years. *SIGH*

Img_5127_editWow, it is getting closer and I am not ready for it. This kid turned 15 on the 7th and is going into 10th grade. I am so not ready for him to leave for college in another three years. Three years, you say? "That's a long time!". Au contraire! It will fly past. Anyone with teenagers will know exactly what I am talking about. I remember when he was little and I would tuck him in, he would beg me to "throw" him into the bed because he thought it was so fun to be tossed while landing on his pillows in a full-fledged giggle! Now, he is big enough to throw ME into my bed! Not a single day goes by that he doesn't say, "I love you, Mom". Even in front of his friends. I am so blessed.  :)

So for now, I will try to forget that I have only three years or so left of him being under my roof, safe in my house. I will try not to cringe when we hand him the keys for the first time, knowing that he is taking flight in a new set of wings, away from our safety.

Wow. Didn't mean to sound all depressing! LOL!  ;) There just have been so many events in my life over the last year that make me realize how blessed I am. I certainly take NOTHING for granted.

I have a busy weekend coming up! A block party Friday night and Matthew's band banquet (depending on how he feels tomorrow - he has tonsillitis!), then Saturday night is a fun pool party at our neighbor's home to kick off summer. Domonique has a basketball game, and of course, Mother's Day on Sunday. I want nothing for Mother's Day except to spend the day with my family, being reminded of how lucky we are to be together and alive. It is the greatest gift I could have.  :) I will try to fit some scrapbooking in between!

Still floating on air! Can't wait to share with everybody!!   ;) If you have read this far, I hope I haven't bored you to death! LOL!

Oh yeah - an insanely funny video: The Evolution of Dance

The elusive ice cream man - finally!

Img_5042editFinally!!! An ice cream "person" who doesn't just ZOOM through the neighborhood so fast that by the time you hear the dinging of the music, they are already on the next block! I mean, seriously, how the heck do these people expect to make any money at all if they don't STOP??? This lady has it together - she actually comes through our neighborhood several times a day, instead of just once. Usually all the construction workers give her a ton of business, but since she is younger and cute, they probably like to talk to her, too! HAHA! The kids are just thrilled to get ice cream. And on another note, when did the ice cream truck start charging such high prices? Good grief, for $2.25 a treat, I could go up to Kroger and buy the kids a WHOLE BOX of frozen goodies! Ah yes, I know, it isn't quite the same.

Well, I got some really fantastic news tonight that is scrapbooking related, and I am just floating on air right now. I can't wait to share! Also, I got my article done for the November/December issue of Scrapbooks, Etc. so I am very excited about that. I did the "Snapshot Savvy" article. A huge thank you to those photographers who contributed great shots for my article!

Ok, I feel really badly because my awesome friend, Leah Fung, tagged me last week and I am just now getting around to posting my answers. I am so sorry, Leah! It was a nutty week!! Here they are, although my answers are probably not near as interesting as hers. HAHA!

What's in your fridge? Here are some of the things in there right now, and I will omit the stuff that needs to be thrown out - haha:

  • Skim milk, and lots of it.
  • Chopped up hearts of Romaine lettuce. I stick with Wishbone Italian. The kids love the Good Seasons Zesty Italian. We all nosh on this stuff often!
  • Shredded cheeses - mozzarella, cheddar, etc. We are cheese freaks. Not so good for the arteries, but yummy stuff.
  • Boring stuff like stick margarine, sour cream, fat-free cottage cheese, eggs, ketchup, mustard, Miracle Whip Lite, and one of my faves - Sweet Gherkins by Vlasic. YUM!

What's in your purse?

  • A ton of receipts from the grocery store, the bank, gas station, etc. I hold onto receipts for WAAAAY too long! I only need them if I throw them out. *sigh*
  • Dental floss. I am seriously addicted to flossing my teeth. I carry this stuff everywhere!
  • Loose change on the bottom of my purse, and tons of it. I need to actually take it out and use it.
  • A cool metal-covered notebook from Andrea at Scrappers Bliss. I jot notes, to do lists, etc. in here.
  • A small cookbook, some coasters from my last trip to Starbucks, and a little bit of cash. Note I said a little bit. HA!

What's in your closet?

  • Lots of too big clothes! Right after the hurricane, wonderful people donated clothing for my family. I was a lot bigger then than I am now, which is a good thing, but I can't bear to get rid of the clothes. They remind me of how many wonderful friends I have out there that I have never even met.
  • Flip flops in almost every color. I am addicted to flip flops!
  • Sheets for the bed
  • A wide variety of stuff - lots of jeans, fitted Tee's, tank tops, a few capris, X-Large T-shirts that I love to sleep in because they are roomy and comfy, and some sundresses.

What's on/in your DVR/DVD?

  • Something G-rated. Always!  :)

What's in your car?

  • TRASH! I seriously need to clean it out.
  • Dental floss. I am telling you, I keep it EVERYWHERE!
  • Loose change
  • Miscellaneous fast-food toys either stuffed in between the seats or on the floor.
  • Alex's booster seat
  • Cell phone and charger - now you know why I never answer it - I always leave it in the car!

Who's tagged next?

  • Anyone who wants to play! Just be sure to post a comment here so I can go check out your answers!!