Tuesday, April 29, 2008


Does anyone else out there love lists??...I am in love with lists. I'm not sure when this obsession began, but I know it has been a long love affair. I love lists so much I will even write down things I do daily just so I can cross it off my list. (Like for example shower!) Okay I'll admit it...if I do something that wasn't on the list...I will write it down just so that I can cross it off. I just get so much satisfaction out of the crossing it off part. Feels like I am sooo productive. I think lists go along with being a planner. One thing that I definitely am. I just updated my calendar with all of Tanner's activities for next month and appointments and bills that are due and guitar lessons and all the daily things that most people seem to be able to keep track of without the need to write it all down. But I simply must write things down. I was/am a great note-taker. I still to this day take notes in church. That way I can refer back and for some reason, if I write something down it makes it so much easier to recall. This all comes from being a visual learner. So today was a LONG list day...bills, personal things, calls to make, Freehand Scraps things to do, emails, newsletters, and it went on and on. I don't have it all crossed off yet...but most and I am getting ready to write this list of to-do's for tomorrow. Ahhh a sense of accomplishment!

Thought I would share a few random things...

This is a project I made in Jenni Bowlin's class at the Scrap Etc. event in Nashville. Using of course her cute products!! She gave us all a small piece of vellum and told us that she was going to make us fall back in love with the stuff. Remember when it first came out a while ago? It was one of the hottest things in scrapbooking I remember. I like what we did with it in her class. We used the butterfly wing and rubbed it on just so that it lifts off the page a little. A little bit of dimension...I thought she had some great ideas.

And second, I ran across this in my Beth Moore Biblestudy book: we're doing the Daniel study. And it's good! It says "Sooner or later, time will always surface truth." This just resonated with me today. (I told you I am a note taker!--Okay maybe this is more of a doodle with notes.)

I have to say HI to my good friend Wendy who was sweet to call me today...glad we're friends Wendy and I'm glad you find this blog amusing!

Have a great day friends...okay off to cross "blog" off the list for today! LOL

Monday, April 28, 2008

Dear One...

Well I must admit that I am just adoring this kit!! I completed 4 projects for my gallery and already have another 2 laid out and in the process of being finished. I just had so many pictures to choose from! This paper has proven to be soooo versatile...I had pictures of us coloring Easter eggs, pumpkin patch pictures, Halloween pictures, and even birthday pictures laid out with it. The paper is so colorful that it worked for so many things. I absolutely HAD to scrapbook the pictures of Chloe feeding the fawns this past summer. This was our first experience with feeding and petting deer and they were so cute! Chloe was so worried about them that night when we went home, she needed to know where they were going to sleep and who was going to take care of them. She just fell in love and still to this day makes me drive past the deer farm we live by to check on them and make sure they are doing okay. When I saw these Sassafras Lass papers at CHA I knew that I had to have them!

Can you see the sheet of netting that you are going to get too? This was so much fun to play with! It just seemed to add just the right amount of texture and dimension to the layout. This page also has the polka dotted fabric and Jenni Bowlin Journaling card used on it. These pictures just melt my heart. I wish you could have seen how tenderly and gently Chloe interacted with these cute little animals. It was an unforgettable moment for me!

Have a great evening!! Smiles to you!

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Too cute!

First here is the peek for what's to come in my gallery for the May kit. I LOVE that felt flower!

Second, Tanner delivered a stellar performance this morning in his preschool program. It was all about farms, and so lots of farm songs were sung. He has been singing them for weeks and only looked a LITTLE shy on stage. He just had his eyes locked on mine for most of it. But he did sing, and he knew all the words and I was a proud mama. Then they had a little power point presentation of cute pictures set to music. It just tugged at my heart strings...where does the time go? How do they grow and get independent so fast? I was reading Amanda Smith's blog yesterday and she had quoted Heidi Swapp from the class we took from her at the Scrap Etc. event and it said "A year from now, you'll wish you had started today." I thought about that today. Knowing that I will never have this day to do over again...never have a chance to re-live those precious moments. So here is where scrapbooking comes into play! I can and will certainly document it. It is just a great reminder to make TODAY count! To make it fun, and full of meaning, and GOOD. Just plain old good.

His class has been watching these little ducks for the last few weeks. They were just eggs in an incubator for a long time and now they have finally all hatched! They are just too cute...a sure sign of spring. The kids are over the moon for them and love petting them, it's hard to get them to leave the classroom because they just can't stop looking at them!

I was reading Wilna Furstenberg's (our guest designer for May at Freehand Scraps) blog today and just loved what she said...here's the link if you want to check it out: http://www.wilnaf.com/ she had a link to a song by a band called the Desperation Band, the title was "Count on God." I am listening to it right now. LOvinG it! Just plain old GOOD!

Smiles to you today!

Friday, April 25, 2008

It's official!

Well it has officially arrived! SPRING that is...I am absolutely loving this weather! Tanner told me on the way to school today that "Spring smells really good." I must agree . This is the first spring I have experienced in Illinois and by far my favorite season here. This beautiful tree is just blooming away in my backyard and making the house smell unbelievable good. (I have one of these flowers Chloe picked for me next to the kitchen sink.) Mmmnnnn...I could just drink in that fragrance forever. I think heaven must smell something like this.

There is just something about spring that renews my spirit. It brings life, and hope and beauty. Optimism just swells up inside me again...and it feels good!

I am off to work a little more on my gallery projects...hopefully I'll have a preview to share here tomorrow. Hope you have a wonderful weekend and take the chance to drink in the fragrance of Spring!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

My friend Wilna...

So I finally found my pictures of Wilna and I and so I thought I would share one. Are you as excited as I am about her designing for us in May? She told me that she LOVED, LOVED, LOVED the kit and the romantic colors. I am just starting to work with mine and I am loving it also. I have so many photos to choose from since I just ordered so many! That makes it hard for me to decide what gets scrapped first.

I was at the hardware store yesterday and picked up the BHG magazine called "Flea Market Style." There is an idea in it that I feel I must share. It is a birdcage turned mail station...and it has my name written all over it! I think recycling items like this is one of my favorite design statements for your home. I don't think it matters too much that you have the nicest furniture etc. but if you add personal touches to what you have, even if it's just basic, you can really make your home reflect your unique style. This is simple to do...I will be on the lookout for a cage like this one now. It wouldn't have to hold just mail but it could also store scrapbooking goodies, which would also be really fun!

Finally, this is one of the many projects my mom made with the kids this last week. She brought them these cute "Animalz" and they made a zoo. The penguin was for me because I collect them...so he is now on my scrap desk looking oh so cute!

> It's no wonder they weren't ready for her to leave! How much fun!?

Wednesday, April 23, 2008


Well today was another trip to Chicago to take my sweet mom to the airport...Chloe cried in the back seat because she was not ready for Nana to leave! And I cried in the front seat because I was not ready for Nana to leave. LOL. Really...I don't care who you are, or where you live, or what you do...you will ALWAYS need your mother! (This is a comforting thought now that I am a mother! This means that one day my little ones will realize that even though they think they are tough and independent and grown-up they will still need me.) We have had fun talking and shopping and watching chick flicks. The time flew by and I am going to really miss having her around! Well you know I had to make the best of the road trip and make another important stop at IKEA! The only thing better about this trip was that I finally knew my way around the store and even took the short cuts! I found exactly what I was looking for, which is always a bonus! And I ate Swedish meatballs for lunch at their resaurant. Yummm, I can't remember the last time I had those! It was a long day and really HOT in the car on the way home...I think it was 80 degrees here today! Hello? What in the world? It's only April...but I'm not complaining! We had Biblestudy tonight and I wasn't surprised when NO one drank the coffee I had made. It is just too warm outside for hot drinks. (Unless you're my grandma...she drinks hot coffee in 90 degree weather!)

In Freehand news I am going to post a little hint of what's to come in the May kit next month...it's called "The Thicket" and I think you'll figure out why.

No the Bambi book is not a part of the kit, just something I used for display. This is my daughters book and I don't think she would like me to tear it up and include it in any kits!!
Here are some of the darling papers from Sassafras Lass that are included in the kit. I am loving the decorative edges!! Wait until you see what goes with these fabulous papers. The exclusive wool felt flower that is pictured with Bambi is my MOST favorite part of the kit. I wish I could send you all 10 of them! You are going to LOVE them! Stay tuned for more!

So back to you mom, I love you and want to thank you for being you! Thank you for all of your help this week and your sacrifice to come and be the "servant of all." You are such an inspiration to me and I miss you already. Give everyone hugs from me!

Good Night!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Good Times...

Well as you can tell by the picture...all three of us have the same rolling tote! I had to pull out the big one for this event. (I also have a smaller one.) It's funny...can you guess who the pink one belongs to??? I am either just weird or am very fashion forward. Hee hee. I had such a good time with you girls...wouldn't have missed it for the world! I am glad that I thought of taking this picture, I will have to do a layout with it for sure. It's the little details that mean the most to me...these little things just make me happy!
I also would like to announce our Freehand Scraps guest designer for May...it is none other than the wonderful and super talented Wilna Furstenburg! I met her in person at the Scrap Etc. event and just loved her, loved her, loved her. She brought her whole family and it was such an honor to take her class. She is so creative, I am totally inspired by her! She is one of my favorite Hall of Fame winners ever...and I love her style. Yesterday I alluded to the fact that she taught us how to "buy a donkey." I have to explain that one for sure. In South Africa (where she is from) when you want to say thank you very much, you say "buy a donkey" and although it is spelled completely different, it sounds just like that. So now you know, and that might come in handy some day! You never know?
Here's hoping you had a great day...is the weather as gorgous where you are, as it is here???

Home again...

Well I am back to blogging after being out of town for the Scrap Etc. event in Nashville. A good time was had by all. Some of the high points for me were:

I got to take classes from some of my all-time favorite scrapbookers.
I got to hang out with my closest friends.
I didn't have to cook any meals.
I didn't have to drive anyone anywhere.
I didn't have to make my bed once.
I got to go shopping and actually try on the clothes! (Not just admire them on the rack.)
I got to stay up late chatting.
I got to be inspired by creative people all around me.
I got new ideas of how to document "my story."

I had such a good time. Anytime you go to something like this, it's just one more way to open your mind to just how important it is to document our lives. One of our instructors read us a quote out of the "5 Book" that said, "There has never been another you. You are a once-in-all-history event. You are new to nature. You are one of a kind; therefore, no one can really predict to what heights you might soar. Even you will not know until you spread your wings. You may not be able to see your undeveloped potential, but it's there--and it is enormous." I loved this book and bought it for a gift for my dad. He and I love this kind of "dreamer" talk. I think I must get my adventurous personality from him. He celebrated his birthday while we were there and so I have to tell him a BIG Happy Birthday from us! We love you so much and are so blessed to have you as a dad/papa! The kids and I miss you so much and wish we could have been there to celebrate with you. You are the best!

This picture is of him playing with the orphans that our church supports in South East Asia and being silly. They just cling to him, and all want to wrestle and play with him. I loved watching him with them, and then seeing his passion to work his hardest at home to support those little ones. You are an inspiration to me dad. I LOVE YOU! (And Tanner and Chloe want to know when you're coming to play hide-and-seek?!)

In Freehand Scraps news I am excited to introduce you to our guest designer for May...but you'll have to wait until tomorrow. I am absolutely thrilled to have the priviledge to have met her and am a huge fan of her work. At the event this weekend she taught me how to buy a donkey. (I will explain that later.) That might give you some clue as to who she is...OR not. But let me tell you May will be great! I will post pictures and also show you a little project I made in her class. Until then...good night!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008


Here I sit, waiting for my flight. Delayed, always delayed! I am really hoping and praying that I make my connection from Chicago to Nashville. My companions are already there, I am happy to say. I just wish I was already there and that I didn't have to deal with the stress of connections and shuttles and customer service representatives, and travelers and airport food. I got here and realized that all I have eaten this entire day was string cheese. (I did have a few peanut butter M&M's but those don't count as real food do they?) Unfortunately this airport has nothing to eat, unless it's out of a vending machine, YUCK! I will just have to wait until I get in late tonight to eat. I managed to find a granola bar in my carry on bag to eat, so that was a good thing. I had just one of those crazy busy days trying to get ready to leave. I was literally RUNNING from room to room in my house trying to get everything accomplished that needed to be done. Running the last minute errands...post office (it's a daily stop now with all of my international customers) bank, last minute groceries, gas...it just didn't end. I hadn't even packed until after lunch today...if you know me at all, that is completely UNLIKE me. I am just praying that I didn't forget anything. As I mentioned yesterday I didn't get my pictures in the mail until I got home last night around 9:00. So I was frantically trying to sort and organize what I needed to bring with me and what could be left at home. That will be my project for the flight. Organize and sort and figure out which pictures are for which class.

I am being called for my flight now so I will check in shortly. Just pray that I make it, because now they are saying that ALL of the flights out of Chicago are delayed also. Which will make it easier to make my connection, but I will be getting in LATE tonight.

Have a happy afternoon!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

A VERY good day...

Well it was one. A VERY good day that is. We drove to Chicago this morning to pick up my sweet mom from the airport. The kids did great in the car, and I was thanking the Lord for that portable DVD player! It was so great to see her, and the kids were so excited. We headed next to the IKEA store there and I got to experience it for the first time...what a treat! I took pictures of course and was totally inspired the whole way through. I think we spent around 3 hours just wandering and letting the kids play and play in the childrens section. My mom said it felt like you were walking around HGTV. There were so many things that we had seen on some of the design shows there. I completely understand why too. Everything is VERY inexpensive and seemed to be good quality, and they had anything and everything under the sun you could want or need for your home! I especially loved their textiles section and all of the brightly colored fabrics. We were all beat by the time we had made it all the way through (it was HUGE) and so we headed for home. Upon arrival I found that my order from ScrapbookPictures.com had finally arrived. Just in the nick of time too! I leave tomorrow for the Scap Etc. event. I am getting excited but still have so much to do. I will make it though, and I know I am in for a real treat!

Since I will be out of town the 16th-20th I will not be shipping any kits until Monday, April 21st. I will be checking email and will get back to you if you should need anything from me, but nothing will ship until the 21st. I think I am definitely going to gain some inspiration just by being there. The creative juices will be flowin'.

Also for my out of towners YES I took the plunge and cut off ALL of my hair. Okay, maybe not all of it, but lots and lots of it. I officially have short hair now. It is taking some time to get used to it, but once I figure out how in the world to fix it, I think I will like it. I like change. It is a good thing for me, a good "stretch" so to speak. Frankly I just get bored with having the same hairstyle/length. I couldn't tell if my mom approved. We'll see. Sorry for the lame pictures, but it's so hard to take pictures of yourself!!

It's nearly morning here and I have a FULL day ahead, I may be regretting my play day today when morning comes. Have a good night!

Saturday, April 12, 2008


Here are the pages I made last night at the crop...I haven't received my order from ScrapbookPictures.com yet..ugggh! So these are literally the last 2 pictures I had to work on!

I am really into texture right now and so I used this netted fiber sheet behind my picture. I think it gave it a beachy/tropical kind of feel to the page. I used patterned paper and cardstock from the March kit. The alphabet is Making Memories as are the buttons. (I still need to sew the fibers through the button holes.) The cardstock photo corner and star are by Daisy D's. I made these layouts in 8X8 format. I read an article by Heidi Swapp once that talked about how she makes many of her layouts this size because they are easier to complete and the embellishments seem to "fit" better on a down-sized layout. This is my first album in this size and it has been fun to work with. I use it as a "favorite photos" album. I like the fact that I have something smaller that isn't all pictures of one event, but rather it spans 2 years of photos right now. It's kind of fun to look through it and see the big change in the kids and I like that it holds formal and candid shots side by side.

This page has more patterened paper from the March kit, a piece of graphic orange fabric, a Heidi Swapp journaling spot and "&", the chipboard "WINK" is also Heidi Swapp. I used the Making Memories tiny alphas to finish my title. If the "With a Wink & a Smile" title doesn't make sense then you must see the movie "Sleepless in Seattle" or listen to the soundtrack. Love that movie! It's a classic.

Hope you're having an excellent weekend!

Friday, April 11, 2008

This week flew...

I cannot believe how fast this week sped by. I have been busy with Freehand Scraps, and signing Tanner up for T-ball, and creating, and getting ready for my trip next week. Sorry for my blogging absence. Tanner was so funny, he has a friend from school who is participating in both soccer and T-ball this spring, so I mentioned to Tanner that if he wanted to we could sign him up to play one of them. (I don't think I have it in me to do both!) He chose T-ball, and I couldn't be happier. No offense to any soccer lovers out there. But at his age, it's just a LOT of running around and not a whole lot of scoring. On the bright side...it is good excercise! He can't wait to start and was convinced that we were going to play at the registration. Funny guy.

(By the way, Tanner just informed me that he thinks I'm a "genious" because I super-glued his green parrots legs back on that had broken off. I think that we should all have this attitude...wouldn't everyone feel happier in general with such appreciation for the little things?)

I have been working on getting baby gifts off in the mail to my sweet friends and their new/almost here babies. I posted a picture of an elephant I had altered and thought I would post the matching card I made with the March kit.

I love it how the elephants trunk hangs off the bottom of the envelope. Since it's being mailed inside the package you can do fun things like that!

I am still waiting on the pictures to get here from ScrapbookPictures.com...ugggh! I even paid a few dollars more for the quicker shipping so that I would have them in time to organize. I am going to a local crop at a church tonight and will be so bummed out if I don't get them! I have a mini book half made (but with no pictures) of Chloe's 3rd birthday. It was a Hawaiian luau party and some of the pictures truned out great! I will share that project here soon! Cross your fingers that the mail carrier delivers them TODAY! I am off to the post office, the employees there are my new best friends. We see each other so much! Hee hee.

Have a wonderful weekend!


Monday, April 7, 2008

Ahhh Monday...

Busiest day of the week! But also seems to be the day I get the most done. I finished up the last few pieces of the May kit today...I am getting so excited about it! Almost ready to ship it off to the designers. Woohoo. I also made a major order at my favorite photo processing site...ScrapbookPictures.com. It took me hours and hours, and in the end I had a total of 522 pictures in my shopping cart. Holy smokes! But I must admit that I havent't made an order for almost a whole year. (Not counting Christmas card pictures.) I can't wait to get them, and I am even a little impatient. I am looking forward to it tremendously. I was really "forced" to do it because in a little over a week I am heading out to the Scrap Etc. event in Tenessee. We have had this trip planned since last summer, and so have been doing homework assignments (photos & journaling) for months now. It is a little overwhelming actually. Unfortunately, I hadn't had any photos printed for it, so this is the reason for the giant order. Sometimes I think that having a photo printer at home (I use it mostly for last minute things or if I'm in a time crunch) is directly related to not making an order for a whole year. At Scrap Etc. I get to take classes taught by Heidi Swapp, Jenni Bowlin, and Wilna Furstenburg. I am so excited about it, and just getting to have a girls weekend with my best friends will be such a treat for this single mom!

I promised to share some more of my projects from our April gallery...so without further ado here is another layout made with the transparency by Luxe Designs. I just loved it when I saw it, and it turned out to be perfect for the wedding dress photo.

I silhouetted a few of the flowers from one of the patterned papers and then even added a few leaves around the scrolled frame. I used the Bazzill bling cardstock as my backgound which just fit so perfectly with the photo. I had someone ask me about adhesive and how to attach it to the background. All I used were mini glue dots, they are small enough to hide behind the embellishments and really strong to keep it all in place. The biggest challenge is getting a good photo of it without glare! LOL.
In other Freehand news...the newsletter went out this weekend! If you would like to start receiving it, there is a sign-up box on the home page. I am planning to do a design call in May. So if that is something that you are interested in...be checking for details to come on how to enter your work. We would love to have you inspire us!

Have a great night!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Gallery inspiration...

Well Amanda Smith, designer extraordinaire, has posted her darling acrylic mini-book on her blog. It's just a small peak at her gallery for April's kit. I am in love with this darling book about spring. You can check it out here: http://amandalsmith.blogspot.com/. You will not be disappointed. I can't believe that this is her first attempt at a mini book, she did such a great job. Don't forget that the gallery should be updated tomorrow. So you can get some inspiration!

Here is another one of my projects that I made using the "blOOm" kit.

This is exactly what I envisioned using the zebra pencil for! I decided to make a little wall hanging and just made loop tabs with the ribbon for the pencil to slip through. I sewed the photo to the black and white fabric and also to the Scenic Route yellow patterned paper. Then I just adhered it to the Luxe designs giant polka-dot paper. I did get asked what I used to write directly onto my photo. I have a white paint pen that works great! I like the tip size on it, it's not too thick and not too thin and it covers without you having to trace over it more than once. It's by Sakura Pen-Touch and it is permanent, quick-dry opaque white ink, the tip size is fine point 1.0mm. Love it!
So in other news I am totally caught up in American Idol this season after not watching any of it last season. (Maybe I secretly wish I was a singer. LOL. Speaking of it, that would be a good idea for a scrapbook page?!) I have a timer on my DVR that records it automatically for me...so nice to be able to FAST FORWARD through all of the commercials. The Weds. results show is right during Biblestudy so if it weren't for my little DVR I wouldn't get to see who gets the boot. I cannot even pick a favorite I like so many of them right now. But last night when Brooke was in the bottom 3 I was in shock! I would buy her album TODAY! I love that she plays the guitar- and is the sweetest person on that whole show! So GO Brooke!

Have a great night!

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

April's in BLOOM...

Okay I just have to say "Yea!!" The site has been updated with the darling April kit.
Check it out here:

As I mentioned in yesterdays post, the gallery won't be updated until the 3rd or 4th, on account of my web guy being out of town. So I plan on sharing some of my gallery today and in the days to come so that I can talk about techniques, and the ways I used the kit. I get lots of emails asking questions about the projects so this is a great place to answer those.

I also have some super exciting news...Stephanie Ackerman my guest designer for April has asked if she could design every month for Freehand Scraps!! Oh aren't we lucky to have her on the "team." She is the founder of Home & Heart magazine and is the "doodle" queen if you ask me! If you haven't gone out and grabbed the premiere issue...run, don't walk to get your hands on it!

Onto some of the projects I made...

These are my dear friends Christy and Justin on their wedding day. Her wedding colors were pink and yellow so they were a perfect match to coordinate with this month's kit. I just cut random square and rectangle shapes from the different patterned papers and used my sewing machine to stitch them on, alternating zigzag and straight stitches. I added one of the Jenni Bowlin tickets and a flower made from the Heidi Swapp tulle, a strip of the funky fabric uncluded and then just a title. Super easy and simple, but I think still elegant enough for wedding photos.

Look at that sweet photo...they are still just as much in love today as they were the day they said "I do!" Thanks Christy for the priviledge of getting to create some projects with your beautiful photos. What an honor.
Here is a project I made using the zebra pencil...I had envisioned using it as a way to hang this project. I used the cool fabric and even used my white pen to journal right onto the photo. I am liking the way it turned out. I also love that new American Crafts paper with the scalloped edge. SO many possibilities!!

So I just know that you will enjoy playing with this kit. I'll post more of my projects here in the next few days. Happy April Fool's Day!

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