Monday, August 30, 2010

They Are

15 years ago I was about to start my freshman year at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. Little did I know that the next four years would be some of the best years of my life. Through an amazing organization called Alpha Phi Omega I would meet people who would become lifelong friends. I simply love them.

Over the years some of us have been in each others weddings, added children, gotten married and become family. I think it's a testament to both UWEC and APO that after all this time we still keep in touch.

A year and a half ago a dear friend of mine from college passed away suddenly. While at his wake his friends decided that we would gather every year in Eau Claire on the 1st Sunday in August to celebrate his life. This year was the 2nd Annual Jason Yarrington Memorial GetTogether.

These photos are from this year's event.

TITLE: They Are
Journaling: I wrote little descriptions about my friends and put them around the photos. ~family, coworkers, roommates, APO, road trips, Water St., hookups, headbands, sister, uwec, cubemates
Design Notes: I uploaded 45 photos into Picasa and made them into a thumbnail sized collage on an 8 x 10 print.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Walking on Sunshine

I was inspired by a layout I saw on my friend Kelly's blog. I already had the photos printed in this size so it came together quickly. My friend Jess designs for Bella Blvd and was gracious enough to let me raid her scrap stash. I just love their bright colors.

TITLE: Walking on Sunshine
Journaling: All smiles at the Splash Pad. 06/2010

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Eleanor Margaret at 7 Months

    Ellie continues to make us smile everyday. She is just a happy, content baby. It's impossible not to smile when you're around her. I love that she is such a "go with the flow" baby. It makes our family schedule run smoother.

20 lbs. 4 oz. weight, 28 in. (97%)
Sleeps about 12 hours a night. 7 p.m. - 7 a.m.
Wearing 12 month clothes
Size 4 diapers
Loves to play with plastic spoons and crumpled paper.
Is starting daycare next week.
Trying very hard to crawl. She'll get up on her knees and scoot around.
Still loves the exersaucer
Has fun splashing in the bath and playing with her feet
Giggles when Bennet sings to her "Coochie coochie coo"
No teeth but very drooly

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

9 to 5 - ScrapFreak Sept. Kit

It's the 25th of the month- you know what that means? It's reveal day for the ScrapFreak Kit. This month's kit is called 9 to 5 and is the perfect mix of Back to School and Office type goodies. I was completely inspired.

TITLE: The Half of It
Journaling: Halfway through your 1st year. 20 lbs. 4 oz. 28 inches 17 1/2" head

TITLE: Red, White & You
Journaling: Looking cute is stars & stripes to celebrate the 4th of July. Wahkon 2010
Design Notes: I took the star hat pin, dipped it in glue and then dipped it into red glitter.

TITLE: We always have Laughter
Journaling: I love how you make me laugh no matter what life throws at us.
Design Notes: I didn’t have a dry paint brush and I’m impatient so I used crumpled tissue paper to dab the paint on. Getting the twine through the buttons can be a bit tricky so I took some tape and made an aglet on the end. You know- those things on shoelaces. Don’t you watch Phineas and Ferb?

TITLE: School Girl At Last!
Journaling: Supply Stock Up- You were so ready for 4K. I had so much fun school shopping with you. You picked out a purple kitty backpack & a box of crayons. Some glue sticks. markers & pencils. You still want your "noisy shoes" but for now you're set for the 1st day of school. Finally!
Design Notes: I took the larger chipboard buttons and covered them with paper. I also cut the blue tab off the post it and put it behind the pull out card.

WooHoo Wednesday- At the Farm

This week's WooHoo Wednesday was one of my favorites of the summer. We spent the night at my friend Jess's family farm in Marathon. The girls were so excited! It was hard to keep them focused on one thing at a time since there was so much to see. An apple tree, barn cats, cows, tractors, corn. . .

Our first stop was the milking barn. We were able to see all 65 cows during their evening milking. I had alot of fun talking with Jess's Dad Rick about the cows. My family has always been big milk drinkers and I loved learning a little more about the process. It makes me appreciate it more.

This calf is less than 24 hour old. How cool is that? Time to feed the baby calf.
Farmer Rick sprayed Scout with some warm milk.
We got to check out the corn field too. The weather this summer has made the corn far taller than usual. The girls and Trevor. Shortly after I took this photo Bennet tackled him and all 3 of them toppled over.
And it kept getting better. Jess's brother Joe took the girls on a tractor ride. Look at the size of those tires! Scout is an excellent driver.
As if that wasn't enough Trevor had one last surprise. His grandpa and him have constructed an amazing train set in an outbuilding. I was blown away. Trains looping past each other over bridges and through mountains. Scout was mesmerized. She just kept moving around the tables soaking it all in. It's rare to hear her be so quiet.
We ended the night with some John Deere fruit snacks. You know how they love the fruit snacks. "Mom- I'm eating a tractor!!"
Thank you to Jess and her family for showing us around the farm. We had so much fun. I know the girls will be talking about it for weeks!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010


I participated in a Freaky Friday scraplifting challenge last weekend at ScrapFreak. I love how quickly this came together. I cut the circles out of patterned paper, added some brads and kept it simple.

TITLE: Genuine
Journaling: Oh Scout- you certainly are the best kind of trouble. Absolutely crazy, happy, adventurous and always trying to figure things out. You have the best laugh. It is loud, hearty, and 100% genuine.I hope that as you grow up you will stay as unique as you are now. Summer 2010

Monday, August 23, 2010

A Day at Bay Beach Amusement Park

My mom is in town to help me with some projects around the house. But that's on the schedule for tomorrow. Today we made the 1 1/2 hour trek to Bay Beach Amusement Park in Green Bay. We've never been and it was on my Summer Bucket List. They weather forecast today was perfect so off we went.

They have 16 rides. There were only 3 rides that the girls were too short to ride. Even better is the fact that tickets cost 25cents a piece. Most rides are 1 ticket but never more than 2. Can't beat that! Scout literally said, "weeeeeeee" on the swings.

Grandma Mary Ella with Bennet and Scout. Ellie was napping.
I just love this photo of Ellie. Everyone else was waiting to ride the train so Ellie and I relaxed. Getting ready to ride the Ferris Wheel

And of course the classic Carousel

Friday, August 20, 2010

Friday Fill ins

Haven't done one of these in awhile.

1. Laughter always makes me feel better.

2. "I think I'll" are the three words that started off the last email I sent.

3. What I'm most looking forward to today is reading my book (The Passage) tonight before bed.

4. Ellie puts a smile on my face.

5. Where in the world did we get so many kids clothes? Three kids equals bins and bins of clothes in every size.

6. All three kids napping at the same time today is just what I needed!

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to unpacking my scrap stuff from last nights crop, tomorrow my plans include yard work and Sunday, I want to keep the girls from combusting while waiting for Grandma Mary Ella to arrive.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

WooHoo Wednesday- Accessorize

I had hoped to Tye Dye some skirts with the girls for this week's WooHoo Wednesday but we had rain in the forecast. Of course once I changed my plans not one drop fell but that's how it goes.

Recently I was looking at my giant pile of ribbon that I've accumulated for scrapbooking. I rarely use it anymore. It just sits there taking up space. Then I had my lightbulb moment- making some cute hair accessories for the girls.

I purchased 5/16 wide dowels and cut them to 12" in length. Pin the ribbon to the end and wrap. I baked them on a cookie sheet in the oven for 20 minutes at 200degrees. Let cool and unwrap.

While our ribbon was curling the girls painted. They LOVE to paint. Scout's usually ends up as something abstract (read: total mess- but hey, she's not quite 3). Bennet has really started to become more particular. Mixing shades, staying in the lines, wanting it to be just right.

I found headbands at JoAnn Fabrics for 25cents a piece. Can't beat that! We made 3 tonight and saved 3 for another day. Here is the finished product. Scout picked green. Bennet wanted pink.

Total Cost (not including the ribbon) for the projects was less than $10. That makes me give a WooHoo!!

Wordless Wednesday- Scoutie

Sunday, August 15, 2010

The Last Week in Photos

We've been soaking up the last days of summer and the last days of me as a SAHM.
Here are some photos to recap. (Photo heavy)

Wisconsin Valley Fair. We went at 8:40a.m. on Friday(8.6) It was perfect. No crowds and the rides weren't open. It was animal judging day so the girls had the chance to ask the 4Her's all kinds of questions.

It's been sooooo hot this week that we had to cool off. Another day at Memorial Pool.

Bennet has been using my Sony digital camera and taking photos around the house. She took this photo of Ellie.
Last Saturday I went to Eau Claire to celebrate the life of my dear friend Jason Yarrington. He passed away suddenly in Feb. 2009. Each summer his friends get together to share memories and give a toast to a one-of-a-kind friend. I just love these people. They made my college years some of the best years of my life!

This week we went to the Woodchucks Game and to Toy Story 3 too. We've been busy!

Friday, August 13, 2010

Freaky Friday Design Challenge - Penny Pinching Patterns

It is no secret that I'm frugal. Nick would say cheap I love to get the most out of my scrapping dollar. Of course the jaw-dropping 2010 Summer CHA releases means that I'm about to open my wallet again. In order to do that without the usual guilt means using some of what I have first.

Many times when I sit down to start a layout I go to my scrap paper pile first. One of my favorite things to do is use my patterned paper scraps to the very edge of their life. Gather similar colored papers and get to work.

Challenge- Create a layout using 10 unique patterned papers. If you want an extra challenge try to use at least 5 manufacturers. Head to ScrapFreak to post!!

TITLE: Hey Brown Eyes
Journaling: One of my favorite things about you is your dark brownish hazel eyes. 06/10

I used 7 paper manufacturers- October Afternoon, Cosmo Cricket, Scenic Route, Jillibean Soup, Crate Paper, Bella Blvd and Creative Imaginations.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

WooHoo Wednesday- Games and Sweets

When we woke up this morning it was gray and overcast. Bennet requested Game Day and I was happy to oblige. She wanted to play Candy Land, Musical Chairs, Freeze Tag, TV Tag and Memory.

We started with Candy Land. Scout was blue this game. As you can see she got the special ice cream cone card and zoomed to the top. This is the reaction of a winner. "Whoo Hoo"
Bennet schooled us in Musical Chairs. I used the kids music channel on the TV and just hit pause. How things have changed.
After this we played a couple games of My Friends Tigger and Pooh Memory. All before 10:30 a.m. (so help me!)
Icky gray days beg for baking. We made these Strawberry Lemonade cupcakes. They are the perfect combination of sour and sweet. Summer all the way. The girls love helping me bake. Bennet is getting pretty good at breaking eggs. She even made KoolAid by herself today and fed Ellie her supper.
This afternoon the clouds cleared and the sun came out. When your kids are up at 6:30 a.m. the day can get long. They were done with dinner at 5p.m. so we went to run errands and get some ice cream. I have lived in Wausau 7 years but have never been to Briq's Soft Serve. Tonight that changed.

(Charity- It was so good! I'm afraid I've found a new vice)
Bennet with her Zebra cone. She thought the swirl was so "delicious Mom"
Scout dropped her cone on the ground just as I was starting mine. So I gave her mine. Am I a good Mom or what?

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

365 days

365 days ago I was 15 weeks pregnant and was laid off from my job of nearly 5 years. I was nervous, somehow excited and hopeful for new changes.

6 days ago I accepted a position at the YWCA- Wausau as the Marketing/Communications & Fundraising Director. I am so excited! It's as if the position were tailor made for me. I am thrilled to be working for an organization that shares similar goals and philosophies that I do. I start Sept. 7.

I feel very blessed to have found a job that I'm excited about. It's really tough out there.

It has been a whirlwind year. Spending loads of time with Bennet and Scout. Welcoming Ellie to the world and our family. Trying to keep ends meeting. Nick working extra hard to make that happen. Enjoying lazy days. Adapting to being a SAHM for the first time.

I have loved being home with Ellie for the first 7 months of her life. I only had 6 weeks with the big girls and have been spoiled. I will always look back on my year of unemployment with mixed emotions but am ready for the next challenge.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Matt & Bennet- Paper Bag Mini

Here's another sample I made for ScrapFreaks FREE online class: Cherished Memories

I made this paper bag mini to highlight Bennet's special relationship with her Uncle Matt or as she calls him- Uncle Beer.

Although it doesn't have a lot of journaling I did a little interview with her about her thoughts on Matt and included her words. I will be adding additional photos and journaling into the pockets as time goes by.


Friday, August 6, 2010

I love you- I love you- I love you

This month I contributed to the journaling portion of the monthly Freaky Friday Storytelling Challenge at ScrapFreak.

I am a firm believer that the story behind the photos is just as important as the photos themselves. My challenge to you this month is to create a page with at least 60 words of journaling. It's as simple as that. I know it will be hard for some of you- but I'm pushing the envelope! Handwritten or computer journaling is fine. Get over there and get to it!!

TITLE: I love you I love you I love you
Journaling: I'm not going to lie. At 4 1/2 you test my patience daily. I try not to yell, but I do. You are a great kid but I wish you could listen more. But no matter how much we clash I love you for who you are & who you're becoming. You and I will have our moments but we'll always have each other.
Product: October Afternoon paper & alpha, Maya Road rub on, Heidi Grace rub on, Cosmo Cricket alpha

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Cherished Memories- This Place

It's a new month which means we're unveiling our FREE online class: Cherished Memories at ScrapFreak.

This month the push is to get you to document those special memories! This means thinking, planning a bit, and journaling. But it does not mean things have to be serious or deep. Its any memory that you really been wanting to document and are willing to take the time to really capture the details or emotions around it.

Details of the Class
The main focus of the class is the topic - cherished memories. Your host, Bree, will post lots of ideas on several topic areas to get you thinking. Then you have the month to decide what memories you want to document.

I provided a sample for the prompt- PLACE. As soon as I saw the list of prompts I knew I wanted to document what the cabin means to me.

TITLE: This Place
Journaling: It’s the place that I fell for Nick when we started dating. It’s the place that I found out I was going to become a Mom for the 1st & 3rd time. The place that I unplug & escape to. It’s the place that makes me slow down & soak up my family. The place that holds some of my fondest memories of the last 9 years. The cabin is so much more than just a place. It’s an
integral part of the story of us. it’s the place.

Product: Bazzill Kraft, Cosmo Cricket paper, October Afternoon paper and alpha, Heidi Grace rub on, American Crafts brads

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

WooHoo Wednesday- Popsicle Stick Frames

I recently did some cleaning, organizing and purging of my scrapbook studio. When all was said and done I ended up with a large bundle of popsicle sticks from various rubon packages. At my niece Nicole's grad party Bennet was admiring her popsicle stick frame. I saw that bundle of sticks and the lightbulb went off!

I set the girls up with a bucket full of goodies to use on their sticks- googly eyes, bling, glitter, ribbon, colored pencils, markers, feathers. . .
I hot glued magnets to the backs so we can put them on the fridge.

Wordless Wednesday- Our Sunshine