Saturday, January 31, 2009

Grandma Mary Ella

Both Bennet and Scout adore their Grandma Mary Ella. Bennet simply lights up when she comes to visit. I realize how lucky they are to have 2 sets of very loving, involved grandparents.

This is a photo from last summer. I'd almost forgotten how long Bennet's hair was. Isn't my mom beautiful? (Mom- I like your hair here. You should keep it like that)
I used sketch #76 from SketchThis. I love their sketches. Going off the sketch made this layout come together in no time.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Friday Fill Ins

My answers in bold

1. Oh, I am so excited George Clooney is appearing on ER

2. I will positively embrace all changes, big and little.

3. During LOST, I tilt my head inquisitively when trying to keep up with the storyline

4. Octuplets;are you kidding me???

5. Right now I'd like to be in my pj's

6. My blackberry and laptop are my favorite gadgets.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to scrapping with Jess, tomorrow my plans include sledding with the girls and Sunday, I plan to make a nice family dinner!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

More Layouts

I need to get some recent photos of the family off my camera.

Until then here are couple more layouts! Scout is in the spotlight today.

Beep Beep- I love circles. I used up a bunch of scraps on this one. JOURNALING: Push, pull, drag & ride. You love the Cozy Coupe. So cute. June 08
I finally used this tag that I'd had in my stash for YEARS!! I had fun with the teal and pink combo. I love the little heart shaped hat pins I picked up at the Fiskars sale. This layout is based off a sketch by Amy over at Scrapfreak.

This photo will always be a favorite. I used it for her birthday invites.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Too cold to play outside. . .

With subzero temps last weekend it was too cold to play outside. I've been wanting to take the girls sledding so I'm hoping next weekend brings above zero temps.

Friday night Nick and I had a date night. We went out to dinner at the country club and had to wait forever for food. A mix up in the kitchen got us free dessert. :) At least the wine was good. Afterwards we went to Bull Falls Brewery to check out the local brews. It was so nice having a night out alone without the kids. I really had a good time!

I also got some scrapping done. These layouts were created for several challenges at Scrap4Life and Scrapfreak.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Back in the Day

When I got my license gas was .94cents

Since then the prices kept going up. Gas prices have certainly come down since the summer but I still love a bargain. My mother-in-law generously gives us her PumpPerk discounts that she accumulates at the grocery. I used her card awhile back and got gas for .109 cents per gallon. I filled my tank with 15 gallons for $1.65
I just had to take a photo! Thanks again Barb!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

B & Outie

What's new with B and Couty? First of all, Bennet calls Scout "Outie". A nickname my mom is petrified will stick. I figure there are far worse things she could call her.

Bennet's latest phrases that crack me up.

  • She'll hold her finger up and say "I have an idea Mama. I'll be right back" She usually comes back with a dvd or a snack.

  • EVERYTHING is "Amorrow". "I'll wear that shirt amorrow mama" "Go to the dentist amorrow"

  • Speaking of the dentist. She wants to go to the dentist in the worst way. She talks about it EVERY day. She mentioned it at least 15 times yesterday. I suppose I should get an appt. scheduled.

  • Since she is 3 and since I need to work on my patience I often say "Bennet- you're drivin' me nuts!" Well- now she says it. "Drivin' me nuts Mama". Wonderful.

Now onto Outie-

  • She climbed out of her crib last week during nap time. I walked into her room to get her and she was walking around with tears running down her face. Startled but otherwise fine. We lowered the crib as low as it will go and have our fingers crosses.

  • Bennet has a new bed which Scout LOVES to jump on. I'll be honest- it's kind of adorable watching them frolic together. Until the inevitable injury.

  • She gets so excited when I come home from work. It's just adorable. She'll stand and the gate and bounce up and down saying Mama. Melts my heart!
  • She is starting to know what things are. Nick will say "Ok Scout, time to go pick up Bennet from Amy's House." and she'll run to the closet looking for her shoes and coat. I'm pretty sure it's her favorite part of the day.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Happy National Popcorn Day!

In addition to Martin Luther King Day it is National Popcorn Day. Since my sister Megan LOVES popcorn I thought I'd find some fun popcorn facts.

Here are some popcorn facts, found here:

  • Americans consume some 16 billion quarts of this whole grain, good-for-you treat. That’s 54 quarts per man, woman, and child. (I think Megan eats double :))

  • Marion, Ohio, USA is home to the world's only popcorn museum. This small town also hosts an annual festival to honor the snack food.

  • Compared to most snack foods, popcorn is low in calories. Air-popped popcorn has only 31 calories per cup. Oil-popped is only 55 per cup.

  • Of the 6 types of maize/corn—pod, sweet, flour, dent, flint, and popcorn—only popcorn pops.

  • How high popcorn kernels can pop? Up to 3 feet in the air.

  • Most U.S. popcorn is grown in the Midwest, primarily in Indiana, Nebraska, Ohio, Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky and Missouri.

  • Many people believe the acres of corn they see in the Midwest during growing season could be picked and eaten for dinner, or dried and popped. In fact, those acres are typically field corn, which is used largely for livestock feed, and differs from both sweet corn and popcorn.

  • The peak period for popcorn sales for home consumption is in the fall.

  • Most popcorn comes in two basic shapes when it's popped: snowflake and mushroom. Snowflake is used in movie theaters and ballparks because it looks and pops bigger.

  • Mushroom is used for candy confections because it doesn't crumble.

  • Popping popcorn is one of the number one uses for microwave ovens. Most microwave ovens have a “popcorn” control button.

  • How high popcorn kernels can pop? Up to 3 feet in the air.

  • On September 29, 2006 a new record was set for the World's Largest Popcorn Ball, as measured by the Guinness Book of World Records. Eight feet in diameter and nearly 24.5 feet in circumference, this gargantuan confectionary creation weighed in at a whopping 3,423 pounds. It took two days for employees of The Popcorn Factory to create the ball.

  • If you made a trail of popcorn from New York City to Los Angeles, you would need more than 352,028,160 popped kernels!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Pocketful of Sunshine

Today it is -21 below with a windchill of -45. All the schools are closed and you would get frostbite in less than 8 minutes if you stood outside. Today is the perfect day to post this layout. A reminder that the weather does get warmer eventually.

I made it with the Scrap4Life monthly song challenge in mind. We were challenged to use a song title/lyrics from 2008. Title: Pocketful of Sunshine by Natasha Betingfield.

This is Scout on her 1st birthday. I loved the photo so much I printed it out nice and big!

I adhered a pocket on the back with handwritten journaling:

JOURNALING: My sweet Scout- It's hard to believe that you are one year old today. You and I spent the day together- just the two of us. We went to a field near our house to take photos. It was one of those moments when I wish I could stop time. It was simply perfect. The sky was vibrant blue with white fluffy cloud slowly rolling by. You sat down and started to play as the warm sunlight shone down on your sweet head. I realized that I took this photo at 3:27 ap.m. exactly one year from the minute you were born. Of course I got emotional. Your mom is very sentimental. I just love you so very much. I will always carry the memory of your first birthday with me- close to my heart. That picture perfect September afternoon we spent together in the sunshine. I love you very much Scout. Never doubt that. Love, Mom

Hope this warms you up today!!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

The Boob Tube

I really like TV. Alot. Here are my top 10 shows right now that I never miss.

10. Grey's Anatomy- I'm still watching. I'm hoping they start bringing their A game. They need to re-kill Denny for realsies this time.

9. The Big Bang Theory- I am surprised at how much this show makes me laugh. I started watching it because it's on right before HIMYM. Now I just want to see it b/c it's really funny.

8. The Soup- I think Joel McHale is hilarious. So meaty. The way he incorporates Spaghetti Cat is classic.

7. American Idol- Like the losers we are we've seen every season. I clearly remember sitting on our couch in our Madison apartment watching the finale of season one. And as my sister Katie pointed out last week, yes- I own a Kelly Clarkson cd.

6. The Unit- Mount up! A good military secret ops show. Plus Jobu from Major League is in it. Although I REALLY want Scott Foley's wife to do something with her hair. Yikes!

5. CBS Sunday Morning- While I love a good Dateline episode of the Dr. whose wive killed him for milk money, but this news magazine show is sooo much better. It's the one time of the week that Nick and I stand our ground and don't give in to Back to the Barnyard or Harold & the Purple Crayon. I love sitting on the couch with a cup of coffee and seeing what Charles Osgood has for me this week.

4. The Office- I've got a thing for Jim. Dwight and Michael make me a little uncomfortable but it's ok.

3. Lost- The next Season starts Jan 21. They really stepped it up a notch last season and I can't wait to see where they take it now. I need to watch the last episode again as a refresher. The show really does make you pay attention.

2. Scrubs- It's back and better than ever. ABC- Tuesday nights. Plus Zach Braff has chin fuzz that I'm finding sexy.

1. How I Met Your Mother- They started running Season 1 at 7 p.m. CST on Lifetime. So catch up! It is so funny. NPH should win an Emmy. It is hands down my favorite current show.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Holiday Layouts

Here are some layouts I made in December.

I took photos of our favorite ornaments and made this tree. I did some handstitching in the solid colored ornaments. I used a glittery number rub on on each photo and then made a corresponding note about the ornament on the trunk. All the patterned paper came from scraps. I just love my circle punches. I use them ALL the time.
Our visit to Santa Claus. Bennet called him HoHoClaus all season.
JOURNALING: B had been talking about Ho Ho Claus for weeks. She was going to ask him for a piggy bank & slippers. In classic 2 3/4 yr. old style she changed her mind when she saw him in person. He is an impressive man in red. So we all joined in the fun for a family photo with the jolly & holly

Monday, January 12, 2009

Scrap4Life Crop

Start the new year off right and join us for a CyberCrop at Scrap4Life. It isn't until next weekend so you have time to get your photos, adhesives, etc together!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Friends and Women

My friend Jenney posted this on her blog. It came at a perfect time for me. Seeing all my Mom's friends stop in with well wishes and food reminds that we are all in this together. And our lives would be be lacking without those friendships.

To all those women in my life, this is about you. From Handke Elementary, to UWEC, the BrrrBabies and everyone in between- this is about you. Thank you!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Bennet Zoolander

A happier post today. From the time Bennet was about 9 months old she's been making Zoolander faces. Here is her take on Blue Steel. We call it Pink Aluminum. Now at 3 years of age she is perfecting her Zoolander looks for her Uncle Matt and Aunt Katie. :) Blue Steel, Magnum and Pink Aluminum

Direct Link:

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Remembering my Grandma Leona

My grandmother, Leona, passed away tonight. While we were home over the holidays we had the chance to see her. Even though we knew this was going to happen sooner than we wanted- it is still hard to lose a loved one. She had an amazing 92, nearly 93, years here and we wish we could have 92 more.

Things I'm remembering about her:

  • She always kept her fingernail polish in the fridge.

  • She always had painted nails and lipstick on

  • She called hot dogs 'weiners' which always made me giggle.

  • The only time I heard her swear was when she was playing cards with her twin sister Levina, her husband Lewis and my grandpa Bud. They thought I was asleep but I heard those curse words

  • She made the best Christmas cookies. She these fried ones that looked like ornaments. Almost too pretty to eat.

  • When I'd stay overnight on a weekend she would always take me to Perkins after church.

  • I think it meant alot to her when she learned our daughter's name was Bennet Leona.

  • She could paint ceramics like nobody else.

  • She would always humor me and tell me the story of her life, adoption, etc. Over and over I'd ask about it.
  • I used to love wearing her high heels. I could fit in them when I was 9 or 10. I think she had regular sized feet and I have giant feet.

I have so much more to say but everything is kind of running through my head in slow motion. Somehow putting this into words helped a little bit. Kind of strange to blog at a time like this but it keeps my mind moving.

Please keep my family in your thoughts and prayers as we remember someone very dear to us.

One Little Word for 2009

Each year in the scrap world Ali Edwards challenges us to pick ONE little word as a "Focus" for the new year. My word for 2008 was Balance. Last year I made 2 canvases to help remind me of my word.
This is the journaling I did last Jan.

Balance being a Mother to Bennet including using my happy tone more than my ‘mom’ tone.
Balance between working full time and home (I sell office furniture. The circle is a piece of textile/fabric that represents work)
Balance being a Mother to Scout including my goal to continue pumping and breastfeeding. (I met this goal!! 1 year of nursing)

Balance between money spent on necessities and treats. (I glued a penny down and wrapped some twine around it)
Balance being a wife to Nick. Focusing on time for just the two of us as husband and wife. (We had alot of date nights outside the house!!)
Balance my passion of scrapbooking. Carving niches of time for myself in my scrapbook realm. (Crate Paper representing scrapbooking)
Balance. Keep all those balls in the air while riding the teeter totter of life.

I think I maintained my goal of Balance in 2008. I had successes as a mom, wife, friend, sister, daughter and scrapbooker. I lived to tell the tale.

The end of the year is always a time for reflection. I tend to be a multi-tasker. I always seem to have 20 projects going on at the same time. While I like keeping busy, lately I feel like it's GO GO GO all the time. It wasn't until Nick said something about it that I realized I need to refocus and RELAX to enjoy life.

So my year for 2009 is RELAX

RELAX: Slow down and enjoy the ride.
RELAX: Remember that I don't have to do it all. And I don't have to do it all TODAY.
RELAX: Enjoy each beautiful day.
RELAX: Spend quailty time with the girls. They are growing so fast.
RELAX: Get up to the cabin more. We were only there once in 2008 and I miss it terribly. The weekends there do wonders for my attitude. The chance to unplug and reconnect with what matters most.
RELAX: Daily with Nick and not get wrapped up in the routine of life.
RELAX: Scrapbook for me and my family. No one else.

In terms of scrapbooking I want to refocus, RELAX and truly enjoy it again. I had given myself the goal of getting a layout picked up for publication. I was lucky enough to have 2 published in 2008. One in Scrapbooks, Etc. and one in Memory Makers. I also had a shoutout in Creating Keepsakes.

I had a wonderful experience serving on the Feeling Scrappy Design Team. It was so rewarding to work with the team and develop educational classes. Plus- the other scrappers I met were pretty darn cool too!
I am currently having a fabulous time working with Scrap4Life as a Design Team member. I became active in the community there early last year and I have truly found a home. The ladies there are just top notch.

But there is another side to scrapbooking that one can easily get sucked into. This backalley, secret, dare-not-speak-its-name side. The feeling that you need to be published or on a design team. The drive to make a name for yourself. To be recognized. I'm not explaning this very well. I guess my point is that I was getting a little too wrapped up in all of that. Too much for my taste. So in 2009 I'm going to scrap for me without thinking of how it may be accepted by others. I will participate in Challenges and Contests because I want to, not because I need to be the best or win accolades. I'm going to RELAX and get back to my scrap roots.

If I get more layouts published that is wonderful. But I don't need it.
If I make a different Design Team or win a contest that is cool. But I don't need it.

I just need to RELAX and do what I really want to do.

2009- RELAX.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Bennet & Scout

I talked to my mom today and she wondered what the girls were up to lately. Here is a quick recap.

  • Still loves everything Giggy Doo (Scooby Doo)
  • Really wants to drink out of a big girl cup.
  • Likes to get out of bed in the middle of the night and thinks Mom is the only one who can put her back
  • Wants to be a helper around the house. Always says "I walk really slow and use both hands ok Mama?"
  • Has been 100% potty trained except at night for a couple months
  • Loves playing with Scout. If Scout is awake in the morning, Bennet wants to be the first to say Good Morning.
  • She is an absolute chatterbox. She doesn't even stop to eat. I actually heard her telling her stuffed animals stories tonight after lights out. I guess she hadn't met her Million Word quota for the day.


  • Is really afraid of automated car washes. Poor kid.
  • She still LOVES the kitties. She's slowly getting better about not pulling their tails.
  • Has become somewhat of a cuddlebug. She likes to sit on my lap at night and watch tv. I love that. Bennet never stopped moving.
  • Can run like the dickens. Look out B- she can catch you now.
  • Still has only 4 teeth. We've started to call her Mater (from Cars) since she has the teeth.
  • Climbs up on everything and thinks the stairs are her jungle gym.
  • Has the most infectious laugh and smile. She really is a genuinely happy-go-lucky girl.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Daily December 2008- DONE!

My Daily December Album for 2008 is complete. I stopped it on the 27th since that was the last of our holiday celebrating. I had a lot of fun putting it together. I already have some goodies put aside to make this album again next year. I can't wait!!

Friday, January 2, 2009

Hello 2009

It's hard to believe that another year has come and gone. Traditionally odd numbered years are momentous for our family.

2001- Nick and I had our 1st date.
2003- We got married
2005- Bennet was born
2007- Scout was born
2009- What will the New Year bring?

2008 saw Bennet go from diapers to the potty. It saw Scout go from crawling on all 4's to running. It saw Nick go from a little tv to his big screen :) It saw me go from an unpublished scrapbook freak to having 2 layouts published.

As 2008 ends I thought I'd share 10 of my favorite layouts from the year. It was hard to narrow them down. All the world's problems aside, we did have a pretty great year. I am excited to see what 2009 has in store for Team Sweeney.

Wishing you a happy, healthy and harmonious 2009!