Thursday, December 24, 2009

Our Christmas Letter

Greetings from Bishop! Somehow last Christmas came and went and I didn’t get a single Christmas card mailed. This year is going to be different, at least that's what I keep telling myself.

Like most people, we have been busier than ever but fighting “busy-ness” all the way. One of these days I’m sure that boredom will take over and I won’t know what to do with myself. Until then, let me catch you up to date on our family.

Joe is still working in Mammoth at the Cable TV system. It’s been nearly 26 years of employment there and we’re thankful he has a job. He loves to backpack into the Sierras and along with some family day hikes, he packed in several times during the summer. There’s nothing like sleeping under the stars and knowing the phone won’t be ringing. Plus, the trout in the mountain lakes taste like none other! He also logs many miles on his bike and this year he’s put on over 2100 miles. It doesn’t matter if it’s hot or cold, the ride is always good for his soul.

Scrapbooking and photography keep me on the go. I’ve been with Close To My Heart for over 15 years now. In October 2008, Karliann and I spent a week cruising the Mediterranean with other CTMH consultants. (Joe preferred the mountains to the city so he didn’t go!) It was the 8th cruise I’ve earned with CTMH. This year’s incentive trip is to New Zealand but I chose not to work so hard and therefore, I didn’t earn it. While I would love to have traveled to NZ, our family visited Jannalyn and Derrick in Australia in June 2008 so I don’t feel entirely jipped. Photography has always been a passion and this past year I’ve done a lot of portrait work. I had the opportunity to photograph 3 weddings this summer/fall and that posed new opportunities and growth for me as a professional photographer.

The port in Malta.

France...we walked all over this little seaside town. I couldn't get enough of the colorful buildings and incredible architecture!

Jannalyn and Derrick completed 3 years of nursing school in Australia and returned to the states (Bishop, specifically) last December as RNs. They stayed with us for several months after returning, were hired at our hospital (they’re well loved!), found out they were expecting, and bought a home. Not bad for a young couple! Our sweet little grandson, Riley Chase, was born on November 6th, making him nearly 7 weeks old. Being in the delivery room made me wonder why in the world I had 4 children without an epidural...can’t quite figure that one out. But oh well...too late! Jannalyn is off of work until early spring and Derrick returns in January after 6 weeks of family leave. We spend a lot of time together. Obviously that is so wonderful.

Brandon is in Toldeo, Washington where he works as a mechanic. Joe, Karliann, and I drove to see him this past June. We had a great time seeing the Northwest and spending time with him, his girlfriend, Leslie, and the dogs. We drove to Mt. St. Helens one day, ran into a bear on another day, and had some of the best chicken ever before making the trip home. Brandon and Leslie had been here earlier in the year to help us dig a pond in our back yard. That was a big undertaking and they were determined to see water flow into it before they left..and they did!

Jessica turned 20 a few weeks ago. She graduated from high school last year (June 2008) and enrolled at University of Reno, Nevada where she has completed 3 semesters. During this fall semester, she realized that her call is to nursing. Bishop offers a terrific 18 month LVN step-up to RN program through our local community college and so she enrolled. In the midst of a winter storm recently, I drove to Reno, helped pack her up, and bring her home. We love having her cheerful little self around the house. School begins for her mid-January. She completed a half marathon in September at Lake Tahoe. Amazing!

Karliann turned 16 a few weeks ago and is a Sophomore at Bishop High. She volunteers at Bishop Kids Club, an after school program for kids who are elementary age. The kids absolutely adore her. If she’s not “working” at playing Wii with the kids, she’s helping with homework or fixing snacks. She and Joe have a date night once a week where they go to Ceramics. They’ve made some beautiful pottery items while making great memories together. It’s been tough on Karli to be an only child but she has some sweet friends. Now that she has her big sisters around and the new responsibility of being an aunt, she doesn’t lack for things to do. That's Karliann on the left:)

In keeping up with social if I have the time... I have a blog where you can read about our encounter with a bear (really, it was pretty exciting!), see photographs of our family activities, and keep up with us throughout the year. Please visit me!! In addition, I have a facebook page so please stop by and be my friend! One thing I hate most is losing touch with friends.

It’s been an exciting year filled with many exciting events, new challenges, and blessings beyond measure. May each of you enjoy a fabulous new year sprinkled with fun and exciting adventures, the love of family and friends, and great health and safety. God bless you!

Laurie and Family

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

What To Give? The Gift of Time, of course!

Our cute little elementary age neighborhood kids have absolutely everything imaginable. Not that that's a bad thing...okay, truthfully, it's bad when you're trying to throw a creative curve to their flock of funness! Up and down the isles of Kmart, Walmart, Target, Dwaynes, you name it...even the craft store! Nuthin' really caught my eye.

So, ya know what I'm gonna do? I'm gonna give them each the gift of my time. Little coupons good for a trip to McDonalds for a free ice cream cone or happy meal followed by a trip to the park to feed the ducks are the gifts of my choice this year. Additional gift cards to bake cookies with me and another to eat a special dinner with our family. I don't know but my guess is that they'll remember time spent with someone special much longer than a little toy that broke within a week of Christmas.

How about you? Do you have children to buy for who seem to have everything and you're stumped for a clever gift? Try time. I think it's a refreshing concept and one that will cause a lot of excitement! How cool is it? You don't have to go buy it, you can't return it, the recipient can use it any time, and there's no expiration date. Gotta love it!

Give it some thought then share how you might be able to give the gift of time this year!

Til nex time~

My Favorite Christmas Movies

Christmas just isn't Christmas without watching a few classic movies...wouldn't you agree? I mean, if we don't have snow outside, I can at least feel it when watching The Santa Clause! Bernard is my favorite character on that one.

Then there's The a kid, I never read the book or really even heard of the story. But in the Jim Carey rendition, I get it! The grinch is really a mean old green thing with a big heart...only problem is that his heart needs to be thawed. My favorite part is the warm smile that spreads across his face when his heart grows three sizes larger. Oh, and the magic of Mount Crumpit!

Charlie Brown's Christmas tree is the cutest yet most lonely little tree ever. Sweet little ornaments could have such a transforming effect on a tree.

Polar Express is another favorite. I mean, wouldn't it be amazing to have a massive locomotive pull up in front of your home, whisk you on board and take you to the North Pole? Ah, the magic of childhood imagination.

It's A Wonderful Life...what a classic. If we all lived our lives with a strong sense of value and character, imagine what our world would be like.

So there you go...a short list of my favorites that help make Christmas memories.

I don't remember much from my childhoos and that includes Christmas but I do have one or two sweet memories I'll share tomorrow. Until then~


Monday, December 21, 2009

The Best Day of the Year

Every year at Christmas time my friend from high school days sends us the best Christmas present ever...a box of homemade shortbread. It's not just average see, it's very different. It has something in it that makes my entire family look forward to the month of December. There's something about it that, oh along about mid-December, challenges each of us to race to the mailbox to see if it arrived that day. The shortbread has a strange effect on,, in particular. It causes me to find hiding places so I don't have to share it! (Yeah, that's darn desperate but true.) The shortbread also makes me tell a little lie..."Hey mom, did Bonnie's shortbread come today?" "No, honey, I don't recall there being a box in the mail." All the while the coveted box of shortbread is hidden in a small ice chest in the laundry room....and one piece is missing.

Receiving Bonnie's box of shortbread means that Christmas is officially here! And you'll be happy to know that guilt got the better of me and I brought the box out of hiding and shared it with the fam. I even went so far as to pull two pieces out, wrap them up, and send them to our son in Washington state. I'm feeling good about that one!

We spent the day baking yesterday...our favorite treats to bake at Christmas are Chocolate Mint-filled Cookies, Hamburger cookies, Shortbread Lemon Bars (these are yummy!), and Carmel Corn. Instead of just walking a couple of miles today, I walked and went to the gym...the reasons are obvious!

Tomorrow I'll share my favorite movies to watch at Christmas time. Until then!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Grateful Today...

I'm thankful for some special things today!

1. Babysitting my darling little grandson for a couple of hours. Even more greatful that his Great Aunt Cindy was here so we teamed the effort and it was, well...efforless and pure joy!

2. are amazing, not only in your giving spirit but your ability to help me tackle projects that would otherwise be too overwhelming for me to go alone. We cleaned out a closet and bedroom that haven't been cleaned out for years and years! What tomorrow??

3. For my precious devotion book, Streams In The Desert. Each morning I wrap the day in prayer and this devotion book always seems to speak to me very specifically for that day.

4. The girls went out for dinner this evening (to Yamatani's, aka Yummytummies) so I didn't have to cook. I had a lazy dinner that was good, just boring. Oh, and I'm extra grateful for Julianne, my cute neice from Arizona who I love to tease.

5. Lastly, I am grateful that there was still some Cookie Dough ice cream and whipped cream at the end of the day.

See you soon!


Thursday, November 26, 2009

Pumpkin Pie Dilemna

So, it's a great day! Thanksgiving is always a fun time around the Warta household. Especially when dessert follows a rather overabundance of just too many good foods. What to do when you only have one VERY LARGE (like 80 oz. large) can of pumpkin but need only one or two pumpkin pies? You make a game out of it! You see, stores in our area were out of the smaller cans but we found one ginormous can at Smart and Final. Rather than risk NO pumpkin dessert of any kind, we opted for the giant can. As it was sitting obnoxiously around the kitchen waiting to be used today, we decided to make a game out of the can of pumpkin. Hide the can (with $1 attached) and whoever found the can (and $1) got to hide it again. If it wasn't found by time to make the dessert, we'll, we'd be out of luck for anything pumpkin! The girls in this household have some pretty creative thinking processes going on. They used a wooden duck to disguise the oversized can, I slipped the can in a large, empty apple barrell, someone else set it right by the phone among some candy so it wasn't easily spotted there. Eventually, the large can of pumpkin was made into 3 delectable, wonderful, memorable desserts! Just in time to settle down tummys full of turkey!

Our family always has great fun, lots of laughter, and pure entertainment. Plus, our new little grandson gave plenty of reasons for Grammy had to hold him. It was a day of constant giggles, laughter unending, time spent raking leaves, and of course, plenty of hands in the kitchen. It's all about making memories, isn't?

I trust your was a day of reflection and thanksgiving for a bounty of blessings.
Until next time~

Monday, November 2, 2009

November Stampaganza!

We still don't have a little grandbaby...maybe tonight?! Nah...I want another good night's sleep! Okay, that's incredibly selfish since I'm not the one who is 9 months pregnant. We are all anxiously awaiting this little guy's arrival and I'm pretty sure it will be very soon. Tomorrow is my daughter's due date. I figure I'm pretty much out of time for getting things caught up before his arrival. Ah's all good.

Speaking of tomorrow, it's November 3rd and we have a new special you'll definately want to take advantage of. Our Stampaganza is amazing! Purchase 2 My Acrylic stamp sets at regular price and get one free. How's that for a great bargain to kick off the holiday season? Do your shopping from the catalog or online. Be sure to e-mail me with any questions, too.

D1377, Around The Block is a hefty set of 26 stamps. Piece by piece you can build your dream gingerbread card! Or, design a simple "Welcome Neighbor" card and add a set of gift tags if someone is just moving into your neighborhood this holiday season.

One more sure to order your favorite products in order to take advantage of the Stampaganza special!

Until next time...when we really have a new grandbaby!

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Christmas Spirit

So... ya know how I signal the beginning of the holiday season? I start listening to Christmas music music NOW! In case you didn't notice, it's October 31st... Yeah, it's early - some might say insanely early - but I say why not? Time flies way too fast and before you know it, Christmas arrives and I haven't watched my favorite holiday movies (Grinch, Polar Express, The Santa Clause, among the many) nor have I listened to all of my favorite Christmas music. To be totally honest, I put in a Christmas CD yesterday so this year, hey, I'm ahead of the game.

This beautiful cardinal card is one my ladies made in a recent card workshop. I've always loved cardinals so I couldn't resist creating something festive with Season of Splendor (item # D1326). It's a two-step stamping set meaning you stamp the outline image with first generation ink then fill in with the matching solid image in a lighter ink which we in the stamping world call "second generation." In case you're not sure about the whole "generation" stamping technique, let me explain...

To stamp with first generation ink, simply ink your image and stamp directly onto your cardstock. To stamp with second generation ink, simply ink your stamp, stamp once on scratch paper then, without reinking, stamp onto cardstock. With second generation ink, the image is lighter, therefore, it acts sort of like a "coloring in" of your image. Cool, huh?

The paper I used for this card is X7115C Jingle. The plaid is created by inking and stamping the edge of a long acrylic block. (That's one of my favorite methods for creating plaids.) The red striped paper is folded accordian-style, without any particular method to my madness. (Ribbon candy inspired that type of folding:)

Any day now I will be a grandma......whoa, holy cow, that sounds......hmmm......I'm not sure how that sounds! I figured I don't feel like a grandma because I still have a 15 (almost 16) year old. But, we are so excited for our little guy to enter the world. He's sure taking his sweet little time in arriving and he's making his mommy very uncomfortable. His Auntie Jessica is growing a bit impatient, too!

I get an extra hour of sleep tonight so I'm off to enjoy that. See you next time.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

How To Live Life

"Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well-preserved body, but rather than to skid in sideways, champagne in one hand, chocolate covered strawberries in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming WOO-HOO - What a Ride!"

What a way to live!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

October Stamp of the Month

Have you seen our stamp sets for the upcoming holidays yet? If not, you're missing out on some crazy-cute sets! For example, take the October Stamp of the Month set, as shown below. It's whimsical and just plain crazy-cute!

There's another great set on pg. 52 of the Fall/Winter 09 Idea Book...the one I'm talking about is item # C1378 Heartfelt Christmas. But don't stop there...browse through the holiday stamp sets and let your mind go creative on you!

Until next time~

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Fall...Welcome Fall!

You've probably heard me say it before but I LOVE AUTUMN! I love the cool, crisp mornings that turn into warm, toasty days then again into cool, quiet evenings. The circle keeps going until the temperatures get so extreme that I start whining that I'm cold all of the time! I quit walking early in the mornings but instead, I sit by the cozy, warm fire. I discuss amongst myself (self-talk??) "do ya wanna go out for a walk now or later?" "Later" usually means I sit by the fire quite a bit longer until I find something else needing to be done. Oh's all good and I still love Autumn!

Here's a fun card I wanted to share. The paper pack is Twitterpated,, X7118B for $12.95 and the tree stamp comes from Four Seasons, B1319 for $13.95. Colors used are Sweet Leaf, Sorbet, and Chocolate. The card pattern came from one of our magical recipe books, Wishes, #9033 for $29.95. If you'd like to order any of these items, just jot down the item numbers and enter them in the Shop Online area of my website. It's all easy ordering over there!

Until next time~

Monday, September 21, 2009

You Are My Sunshine

Do you know the song, You Are My Sunshine? It goes something like this...
You are my sunshine
My only sunshine,
You make me happy
When skies are grey,
You'll never know, dear
How much I love you,
Please don't take
My sunshine away.

It was one of my childhood favorites...I suppose that dates me but who cares! So, whenever I see the word sunshine, it reminds me of this song and brings a smile to my face. The song is stuck in my head so I suppose that means my head is filled with cheerful thoughts! Good thing cuz we all need to fill our hearts and minds with good things.

The stamp set I used for this card is from the September Stamp of the Month, Treasures. I love the designs in the set because many of them bring sweet thoughts to mind. You never grow too old to blow a dandilion or take an extra second to tell someone "thank you." It's never too late to sprinkle a little sunshine on someone by sending a handstamped card or sharing a smile. I'm thinking that this set is quite appropriately named.

The paper pack I used for this cute card is Twitterpated...personally, I think that's such a cute word! (It's fun to say, too.) You can find the paper pack on page 22 of the Fall/Winter Idea Book or on my website. It's perfect for fall but the theme goes far beyond any particular season. Be sure to check it out in the catalog or enter item # X7118B in the Quick Add search bar on my website.

Hope you enjoy! Until next time~

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

The Dash

I was watching a webinar last week and the speaker had a terrific ending to his presentation. He called it "The Dash". My first thought was far could I run in how short amount of time? After all, isn't that the name of a race in track and field? Oh yeah, in track and field, they insert something like "500 yard"! Not for me...I'm not a runner:) Well anyway, the point he made really hit home with me. You see, "The Dash" in his context referred to the time between being born and dying. What is it that we do with our "dash", that little hyphen between the year born and the year of passing? Have any of us really thought much about it? Seems a bit morbid but I think if I, personally, spent more time considering how to live my own "Dash", I might enjoy a more fulfilled life, rather than living my "Dash" by scurrying here or there and missing many opportunities to touch the life of someone else or be inspired by someone myself. There's lots to it, for sure. So, maybe today you'll want to consider how you're living your own "Dash".

So, last night at one of my monthly workshops, I pulled out this remarkable little tool kit called the new Soft Set Eyelet Tool. People! If you hear one thing while reading this, hear me yelling "this is the most awesome improvement on a product ever!!!" Followed by..."ya gotta have one!" Love the ease with which I can set eyelets now...and it's s..i..l..e..n..t..!! Ah, the hush of setting an eyelet is unlike any other eyelet setting I've done before. Those were always rough, narly, and above, obnoxiously loud! No'll love this one. Item number Z1208 for $14.95. It's the best buy all this year! You can order it on my website.

Until next time ~ so long!

Friday, September 11, 2009

There's No One Quite Like Me

Here's a fun layout my scrapbook classes have been working on. It carries on the theme of scrapbooking "All About Me" that we've been doing all year. I'll edit the details the first of the week since we're preparing for a baby shower this weekend. Hope you enjoy! See you again soon~

Monday, September 7, 2009

September Stamp of the Month - Treasures

Every year during the Labor Day weekend, the county fair comes to town. Yeah, I love rollercoasters but not the county fair type,unless they're mild - like maybe the Merry-Go-Round. I know, that's not very nice to say but you won't get me on the Zipper flipping upside down and going every which way, spinning the entire time. BUT...put me on California Screamin' at California Adventures and I could ride that thing forever. The best part of our Fair weekend is the Kettle Corn. I'd love to know how to make that myself so I can satisy my cravings for it during the year!

A new month also brings a new Stamp of the Month. This one is just wonderful! You can get it only during September so be sure to place your order by e-mailing me or on my MyCTMH website.

See you next time!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Dry Erase Board Idea

I don't know about you, but I wake up with the best of intentions every day. Do I follow through with each plan for the day...ahhh, I wish it were that easy or I was that disciplined. Sometimes I get ready to accomplish one task yet I find that I get sidetracked. So what?? Oh, I just wait for a new morning when I can, once again, wake up with the best of intentions...only these are from the day before. Eeeek! Suddenly I'm a week behind! So then, it all defaults to "life", and all of the curves we're thrown on a daily basis. For me, I've had more curve balls the last 10 days than I've had in 10 years. But, stretching my ole arm out, I'm catching, by golly. And we're gettin' through.
This cute little frame serves as a reminder for various errands or appointments that come up throughout the day or week. It's a regular 4x6 photo frame but what makes it unique is that you can write on the face of the glass with a dry erase marker. When you're ready to change the message, a swift swipe with your bare fingers will remove all the writing in it entirety! Pretty cool, I think! How do you like the left section where there's a stack of Post-It-Notes? Handy, huh? I thought so when I used this thing over and over this week to remind me to call the insurance folks who don't want to make good on our policy, or to pick certain items up from the store. You could also incorporate a photograph in either the left or right section of the design.
All is good! The sun came up this morning, went down by evening, and we harvested a ton of tomatoes in between. So complaints? Oh, there are none tonight! Praise God.
Until next time~

Monday, August 31, 2009

Fall Winter 2009 Idea Book is Here!

September 1...just a few minutes away! And you know what that means? The new Fall/Winter Idea Book goes LIVE! New scrapbook themes, accessories, stamps and so much more...this book is an amazing kick-off to a fun and exciting Fall. Three times a year the anticipation builds and you can relax, start shopping, and planning for a creative season of stamping and scrapbooking. With the release of the new Idea Book, you'll find a multitude of products for the seasons that await us...everything from Fall and Harvest products to Christmas. And as usual, you'll be amazed at how versatile the products are, especially the Background & Texture papers.

Don't forget that Studio J is just around the corner. You'll want to stay tuned for updates as to when the product will be available.

Gotta love classic color combinations like this one. Chocolate goes with just about any color...doesn't it look warm and inviting when pared with Dutch Blue? Your everyday can be more than an average day by creating beautiful card projects from our September special, Delight in the Everyday. There are a ton of terrific products in this kit. Visit my MyCTMH website, click on the image in the center that matches the one here on the left and you'll get all of the nitty-gritty details. Love, love, love our card kits! Oh, how they make my life simple when I most need it that way.

Let me send you one of our new catalogs. E-mail me for details.

See ya soon!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Got Beasty Boy!

Thought I'd post a quick update on the little beasty boy....we got him! I know, I's a heartless thing but do we really want a little mouse running amuck in the house? Not especially. My daughter even disposed of him properly...ewww! She has some gene that I surely don't have because I'd have 1) called Joe in or 2) dialed 911. I'm a wimp, yes, it's true.

Apparently my mom told Joe about some mouse stories and mice in the house when I was growing up. Supposedly I don't remember...or maybe I blocked it out. It goes like this...When I was growing up, we occasionally had mice in the house. We lived out on a ranch so although I don't specifically remember seeing a mouse in the house, I'm sure we had plenty. Mom had a heart like mine but rather than set a snap trap, she set a HavAHeart trap. They're named for a good reason, don't you think? However, once they were humanely caught, she flushed them down the toilet. Okay...gotta admit here.....Mom, I'm seriously confused! What's the diff?? You're gonna have to splain that one to me shortly. Okay, I don't think I want to talk about this anymore!

For a welcome change of pace, here are some lovely images of my daughter in her later pregnancy. She is a beautiful girl! We're having a boy...and we're so excited! If you have any clever games to play at baby showers, please post them here.

It's all a big bunch of Belly Love!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Baby Shower Invite & More

My daughter looked at the price of store-bought baby shower invitations and quickly decided to make her own. Kind of a no-brainer for us stampers! Simple and cute, she designed this invite with some classic background & texture paper from Close To My Heart days gone by. The title "It's A Baby Shower" was printed out on plain white copy paper using a Close To My Heart font, Dot Dash from our Expressive Font CD Volume 1. Some things are better left plain and simple...and this is a perfect example!

A little update on the leak in our house....the plumber was here this morning and able to use leak detection devices to isolate the leak. Once he jackhammered a nice 2 foot deep hole in the cement of the living room, he came to within 3 inches of the leak in the pipe. Pretty darn good, I'd say! Good, that is, until the insurance adjuster came by and gave me her "news".

We've been following everything by the's been a phone circus with different people from insurance calling to line up various people to take care of the problem. On Monday, one of the insurance guys I spoke to said any damage caused by the leak would be covered. Access to, repair of, and closure to the leak isn't covered. But, carpet would be covered since it was water damaged. Leak detection services would also be covered as would be the services for drying out the area. Great, I understand this. forward to today...some random adjuster lady drove 2 1/2 hours to stop in this morning, peer at the hole, whisper something to the plumber so that I couldn't hear, and got out her tape measure to measure for carpet. Then she excused herself to go to her car and make a phone call. She came back in a short time later and said she had bad news...nothing is covered. WHAT?????????? That was a complete contradictory statement to what I had been told!!! Now, if I used foul language, I might have cussed her out, given her a quick boot to the arse and a slammed door behind her. But instead, it all stayed in my head and I asked a few questions then told her to leave. Am I furious? You bet! Soooo, exactly why do we pay homeowners insurance?? I'm not quite sure other than to make someone else's life very, very comfortable. (If you're an insurance agent reading this...don't take it personally.) We'll see what our local agent has to say...he's a reasonable guy, right?

So, Jill, my darling neighbor, bailed me out again. I, I needed...a Diet Coke for lunch and the box was empty. Since everyone living here seems to have discovered all of my Diet Coke emergency hiding places, and the plumber was here, I phoned Jill up to ask if she had any extra Diet Cokes...(or hard liquor since I had just finished up with the adjustor lady)...and guess what? She did! (Diet Coke, that is.) Ah, at least I could drink to my frustrations with a cold soda. Thanks, Jill:) About the hiding places? I'll be finding some new ones as soon as I replenish the soda.

No news on the mouse front. Pierre, bless his passive little heart, slept all day yesterday in Karliann's room, where the mouse was last seen. Good grief dude...get up and hunt that beasty boy down! Maybe we should quit feeding the cats for a day or so and let them get good and hungry.

Until next time!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Of Mice and Butterflies...

Doesn't really have much of a ring to it, does it? Each one is so opposite! I need to discuss both here so I figured I'd make the title a bit on the curious side...kinda like the mouse we can't seem to find.

Let's chat about the pretty card to begin's one that I featured recently in a monthly card making workshop and the ladies loved it! The butterfly is attached to the insert card along the body area. The wings are cut out and backed with a coordinating piece of cardstock. The paper is Close To My Heart's Amore, one of my favorite color schemes. The right side of the card insert with butterfly attached, slides out to reveal a message. Embellishments include brads, pearl paint, and ribbon. Really pretty and super easy to make!

Alright, do you want an update on beasty boy? This morning I woke up to a note on the kitchen counter that read..."will someone PLEEEEZE get a mouse trap today?" According to Karliann, she caught the silhouette of little beasty boy zipping across the windowsill behind a sheer curtain early this morning. (Kinda reminded her of a scene from a creepy movie.) She hollered for dad, who came running with a shoe. A shoe?? Karliann had a fit at the thought of a squished mouse on her windowsill so she suggested that her dad choose a more humane method of catching the speedy little about a box? A box?? What, are you gonna catch it with the box or smack it silly? Well, it was time for school and once again, the mouse is on the loose and not at the forefront of my mind today since I'm dealing with a very flooded living room and difficult insurance folks.

It's great to have friends who have got your back because my good friend and neighbor, Jill, had mine today. Remember, according to my kids, one must posses a hunting license in order to purchase a mouse trap so that was going to be a significant delay in my mouse hunting today. But, didn't turn out that way since Jill and Karliann chatted about the mouse "situation" on the way to school. Shortly thereafter, I went over to Jill's to borrow something and she was on her way to my house "bearing gifts." Ohhh, cool, I thought...a belated birthday present that would help fix the leak in the house! No such luck...but something way better...illegal mouse traps! Complete with peanut butter. The best part? By the time she left, they were all set. So far, no one has showed up at my door asking about possession of illegal mouse traps so we should be good, at least for the night.

If beasty boy ventures into this water-damaged room, he'll have cold feet, for sure. And maybe wet! The carpet is gone and the cememt is not real welcoming. There are holes to fall into, tack strips around the edges, and dangers lurking around every corner...that is, if you're a mouse. This photoshows the living room (and my workshop area) where the leak is. The carpet was the first to go and as long as we have water turned on, we're sucking it up with that wet/dry vacuum over there in the corner. Ahhh, it's just a minor inconvenience. It will all be sorted out soon enough and we'll be celebrating new carpet!

Maybe tomorrow I'll have good news about beasty boy...good news, that is if you're on my side. See ya soon!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Some days are diamonds...

...some days are stones...

And so the song goes. It's one of my favorites by John Denver and every time something really good and exciting happens, I think of the day being a diamond. On the few occasions when things go wrong, those days...well, they're the stones. The last few days seem to be stones. Want to be filled in? I don't think you'll want pictures for these it will be text only today!

Over a week ago, as 7 or 8 of us were sitting in the living room, most of us girls which doesn't help the impending situation. Silly me...I had left the screen door open slightly so the dog and cats could come in and out for a little while, and all of a sudden I saw our adorable, passive cat appropriately named (by my husband...not me), Pierre, come sauntering in the house with something in his mouth. It had a pointy nose and skinny tail so obviously I screached! Apparently Pierre did too and dropped the little beasty boy and off it ran...but not out the door. So, we spend a good while shaking the couch upside down, poking under other furniture with a yardstick but little beasty boy was gone. We sorta figured he come out of hiding when he got hungry or maybe we'd find the cats arguing over who was going to have him for dinner but so far that hasn't happened.

Fast forward now over a week later to today....we were on our way home from moving our daughter into the dorm room at the University of Reno (yes, emotional for me). "Home" showed up as calling my cellphone, wondering what happened to the mouse this morning. Huh?? What mouse? Who saw a mouse this morning?? Heck, I thought it had been eaten by now! Well, nope. Our daughter was getting ready for work in her bathroom and saw something small and grey with a pointy nose and long skinny tail scurry across the floor and hide in some towels. (Her fault that there are towels on the floor!) So, the question posed to me on the phone was "who's gonna trap the mouse?" I replied with "Beats me! How about whoever saw it last? Go get a mouse trap and set it, for heaven's sake! There's cheese in the fridge!"

Well, we just returned home after a long day of driving and there's no mouse trap set and no one to report they saw beasty boy direct himself outside so I'm supposing he's still making the best of a comfy house for a little while longer.

Okay, now you know where we stand on the mouse situation...I'll fill you in when (and if) it comes to an end...Ohh yeah, one other other daughter informed us of a California state law that goes something like this: In order to set a mouse trip, one must have a hunting license. My eyebrows are raised here and I have a bit of a crooked smirk on my face...guess I'll look that one up in the books.

We've had lots of company over the last couple of weeks, including two of our daughter's college roomies so there's been lots happening around here! Everything but cleaning, that is...

Yesterday morning I was up early preparing to leave around lunchtime to go photograph a lovely wedding up at Convict Lake, about 40 minutes from home. I stepped on the carpet in the front room (where I do all of my workshops) and the floor was soaked. Hmmm, I though...Charlie had better not have gone potty on the carpet. I looked more closely and no color, no smell but I took another step and squish went my foot. We now have an entire room with a soaked carpet and pad and can't find where the leak is coming in. It's tricky to access the water main in order to turn the water on and off, especially in the dark. For tonight, the carpet and pad are all removed and now we await the plummer and insurance folks.

So, it could have been worse and we could have hit a deer the other night AND tonight...but we missed both did temporarily get worse when I flattened a cute little skunk right smack in the middle of the road last night. I hope the little guy is in heaven for skunks...must be a pretty special place. And the wedding? IT DIDN'T RAIN on the outdoor ceremony! The rain waited for today. The light was ideal for a photographer and it was a wonderful group to photograph. Watch for some images.

So why haven't I posted anything cute and creative on here in the last week? #1, not much extra time, #2, too much chaos!, #3 room flooded, #4 had to move daughter out to college, #5 photographed a wedding, and the list could go on! But, I can't's just a few minor inconveniences.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

National Stamping Month - Celebrate Everyday

Wow! Just as one special closes out, Close To My Heart announces another irrestible offer. Card kits are one of my favorite products...I usually have several on hand. I can't wait to get my hands on this one, too! Oh, and the paper...I LOVE background and texture paper. (I'm a closet paper hoarder.) This pack has plenty to keep me (and you!) creating for hours.

So here's the skinny on how you can get it FREE:
1. Purchase a minimum of $60 in stamp sets (A, B, C, D, and E-size) between August 18 - September 30.
2. Host a home gathering or catalog party. If you live in Bishop, this includes a workshop or in-home gathering...if you live outside of Bishop, it includes a catalog party.
3. Sign up as a new Consultant between September 1 - 30.

*** OR ***

Purchase as many card kits as you'd like for just $39.95 per kit. It gets any order between September 1 - 30 and you'll be automatically entered in our daily drawing for a FREE card kit! Winners will be announced on my MyCTMH website.

Wondering what's included in the kit? Here you go...
1 - My Acrylix Everyday Celebration Stamp Set (D-size)
16 - 4 1/4" x 5 1/2" Colonial White Card Bases
16 - 4 1/4" x 51/2" Colonial White Envelopes
1 - 12" x 12" Dutch Blue Cardstock
1 - 12" x 12" Colonial White Cardstock
4 - 12" x 12" B&T Duos Paper
1 - Chocolate Distressing Ink
1 - Dutch Blue Distressing Ink
1 - Mini Medley Accents: Shades of Chocolate Collection
5 - Chocolate Ribbon with Colonial White Stitch
50 - 3D Foam Squares

...and my very favorite...
1 - Full Color Step - by - Step Instruction Brochure

Head on over to my MyCTMH website and place your order today! Be sure to add item # CC10006C because that will add on the kit FREE. Until next time~