Friday, November 27, 2009

Thanksgiving, Emma's Birthday, Template 53, and More!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! I hope you all had a great Thanksgiving. We sure did:) We had a great meal (cooked almost entirely by me) and just enjoyed having a quiet Thanksgiving with our little family of 3.75 (counting the baby). I don't like turkey, so I made a ham instead. I see no point in putting forth all the effort necessary for a turkey when I don't even like it, or in having tons of turkey leftovers that I won't touch. Don't worry; I warned my husband that I wouldn't make a turkey for Thanksgiving before we got married. He had no problem with it at all:) He actually prefers ham, too. And I make a fabulous honey glaze, if I do say so myself:) Our menu consisted of ham, mashed potatoes, gravy, stuffing, sweet potatoes, jello salad, rolls, homemade cranberry sauce (SO much better than canned), pumpkin pie, and chocolate raspberry cheesecake. Ooooh was it good! And now we have tons of yummy leftovers to enjoy! I was VERY happy with how the cheesecake turned out. I got the recipe here and exchanged the white chocolate chips for milk chocolate chips. Yum. SOOOO good. I hope everyone else had a great Thanksgiving with tons of yummy food, too! I digiscrapped some of the things I'm grateful for, which you'll see further down in this post:)

For those of you crazy enough to get up super early for Black Friday shopping, good luck and I hope you get the deals you're looking for! I went once and most of what I wanted was gone before I could get to it. It was too crowded and crazy for me. Definitely not my thing. But to each their own! I'll be browsing GDS with my $7 gift certificate, though! Hopefully I'll be able to figure out what I want to get with it before the day is through;) I had every intention of staying as far from the stores as possible today, but we may end up going to Payless Shoes later in the day (after John gets off work - he works retail and has to be there at 4:45 AM) to get Emma a desperately needed pair of boots for the winter. The hand-me-downs she got from her cousins are too small and she currently only has one pair of shoes that fit - and they are SO not we discovered the other day when we played in the snow...

But THE most important thing about today is that it is Emma's birthday!! Happy birthday, Emma! I have a 2 YEAR OLD. Wow. How did that happen? Two years ago from this moment, I was in the hospital with my brand new baby girl. And now she's running around and talking like crazy (well, technically, right NOW now she's asleep for the night - but you get the idea). How did that happen? I've been thinking about her upcoming birthday for a couple of months now and mentally preparing myself for it. I accept the fact that she is now 2, but it is still hard to believe that 2 years have already flown by. She has grown and changed so much from that first moment I held her in my arms. It's a good thing I'm pregnant or I'd have some serious baby fever right now! Her growth and development was so gradual that it feels completely natural. All the same, it's strange to look back on those early moments and think, "was she really ever that little?" In many ways, it seems like she's always been as she is now. THIS is why I scrap. So I can remember all these precious moments of our family's life before they fly away forever.

Speaking of scrapping, geniaBeana has some awesome brand new Black Friday releases! Be sure to check out both her Elemental Scraps and GDS shops as everything is 50% off!!

First, we have Autumnal, which is perfect for scrapping all those Thanksgiving dinner photos. We were all drooling over Thanksgiving food in the CT forum when she posted the preview!

Mmm, doesn't it make you want to pull your leftovers out of the fridge and start munching?

And here's the page I did with it:

Wordart from Elegant Wordart

LOL, modern conveniences encompass such "necessities" as electricity, heat, indoor plumbing, refrigeration, dishwashers, washers and dryers, computers, cell phones, internet...and of course, Photoshop CS4;):D But in all seriousness, these are some of the many many things I am thankful for.

Next, is an adorable Christmas collab with Dylabel Designs called Holly Jolly:

Isn't it just super adorable? I haven't had a chance to play with this one yet (we've had a crazy week), but I can't wait to! I think our Christmas card will be done using this kit:) There are also some gorgeous glitters and adorable flair to match the kit at geniaBeana's stores, so be sure to check them out!

As to our crazy week, first I had an OB appointment on Monday. Everything looks great! I gained 2 lbs since my last checkup, so now I'm up to an 11 lb gain total - at 34 weeks!! Sweetness. Less to lose later:D Baby is measuring perfectly, blood pressure is awesome, etc. But I officially have been too swollen to wear my wedding ring for about 3 weeks now. It's funny; I LOOK much bigger this pregnancy, but I've only gained 11 lbs...go figure. I didn't have any swelling issues with Emma (totally lucked out there!) and was able to wear my wedding ring right up to the very end. Not this time! I was wearing sandals in the cold until it started snowing. Thankfully, my boots miraculously fit comfortably on my swollen feet.

The worst part about the swelling, however, is that it gave me carpal tunnel in my left wrist/hand. I'm right-handed, so I totally didn't expect to have those problems with my left side. But the way my OB explained it to me makes total sense. Carpal tunnel is caused by excess fluid on the joints. Pregnancy swelling can easily do that - in fact, it's the number one cause of carpal tunnel. The fact that it runs in my family doesn't help, either (Mom, Grandma, aunt, and uncle all have carpal tunnel). The less dominant side is more likely to have problems because it isn't as active - and therefore doesn't dispel the excess fluid as well. Interesting, huh? Too bad the knowledge alone can't make my wrist stop hurting:( I have a brace on it, which helps, but it can only do so much. Just a few more weeks...

The rest of our crazy week involved a sick little Emma:( She threw up 3 times on Tuesday and once on Wednesday. She also had one of those nasty blow out diarrhea diapers that necessitated an immediate bath. Thankfully, she's feeling much better now:) Though, she seems to be sniffling a little now. If she ends up having a cold, I'll know exactly'd be yet another case of parents bringing their sick kids to church and getting MY kid sick! Ugh. If your kids are sick, KEEP THEM HOME!! ARG. *steps off soapbox* I really hope she doesn't have a cold. It's bad enough she was sick on her birthday LAST year (which, coincidentally, landed on Thanksgiving)...ironically, with a cold. And an ear infection. Thankfully, it didn't seem to bother her in the slightest.

Oh, and I haven't written about Emma's birthday party yet! We had her party on the 17th because we knew most of her little friends would be going out of town for Thanksgiving. It was really fun! We had some yummy appetizers (cheese and crackers, apple slices, grapes, carrots and ranch), a couple of fun games for the kids with prizes (raisins and fruit snacks), presents, and of course, cake! They party turned out really well:) I'll have to scrap the pics soon. We all had fun hanging out and watching the kids play. Thanks to all who came! I couldn't get Emma to wear the cute little crown I made her, though:( Hopefully I can get her to wear it today for her ACTUAL birthday!

Aaaand now that you've scrolled past all my ramblings, I've got a free template to share! Template 53 is a 12x12" template in PSD format. Here's the preview:

You can download it here.

Thanks for stopping by and hope you all had a great Thanksgiving!!

Aaaand my 2 year old just woke up screaming...and sounding all stuffed up. Something tells me it's gonna be a loooong night...

Monday, November 16, 2009

Template 52, Scrapping News, and Some Projects

Life's been crazy busy as always! Until tonight, I hadn't scrapped at all this week. I've been busy trying to get things ready for Emma's birthday party - which includes a much-needed hosing down of the apartment. Well ok, I didn't actually use a hose...but I've been cleaning like crazy. And taking frequent breaks to rest because I physically can't handle as much as I normally could. 3rd tri will do that. And it seems like as soon as I clean something, it magically gets dirty again! Frustrating! I just cleaned the sink again (for the 2nd time in as many days) and it already needs cleaning again. Gyah. At least I like the smell of my cleaner!

But first, remember the Super Scrappin' 7 challenge from my previous post? (If not, scroll down.) Well, those who completed the challenge got entered into a drawing to win a $7 gift certificate at - and I WON!!!!! I'm SO excited!! I NEVER win these things!! There are so many for-purchase kits I'm drooling over but could never justify with my budget. To be honest, I've paid for ONE kit in the year I've been digiscrapping and I had a very specific need for it. But now I get to pick $7 worth of goodies to buy! Yay! Of course now the problem is, what do I get? I have to be VERY selective. Ah, decisions decisions. Good thing I have till the end of the year to make my choice!

Speaking of GDS, it is with a heavy heart that Kimi's Kreations is closing her store and retiring from designing - at least for now. See her blog for further explanation. I completely understand and support her reasons 100%, but I don't feel it is my place to explain them:)

The good news, however, is that her entire store is 50% off until November 30th. Her DSD grab bag is open and individual pieces are now for sale. Check out these awesome goodies over at her store.

Speaking of open grab bags, geniaBeana's is open now, too. Check it out over at her GDS and Elemental Scraps stores. Lots of cute stuff, so be sure to check it out!

So what have I been up to this week? Other than cleaning, that is? I've had a few projects to do. In order to clean, I had to put my sewing machine away - but I still had things I needed to use it for. So I finished up those little projects and put my sewing machine back in its little cabinet. None of the sewing projects are photo-worthy; just hemming John's jeans, sewing a button back on his suit (well, that didn't require the machine, but it still needed doing), mending some know, boring stuff. Like I said, not really photo-worthy. But now it's all done:)

I also got to do a couple of craft projects. We made some cute letter blocks at Relief Society this week using paints, scrapbook paper, and modge podge. Mine turned out really cute (please ignore the ugly flash-on-TV-screen):

Then, I made a birthday crown for Emma. I totally stole the idea from a couple of my BAM friends:) They sewed theirs - I cheated and used my neighbor's hot glue gun instead:D It was way easier and more in my skill range. Had I tried to sew it, the 2 would have been horribly crooked, and I'd have been insanely frustrated with the whole thing. No, glue was a better choice for me:) Didn't it turn out super cute?

And as you can see from that pic, I wrapped some birthday presents as well. I love wrapping presents! It's so fun. I'm excited to start wrapping the Christmas gifts. One of those is John's birthday present, since his birthday is only 8 days after Emma's. The rest of Emma's gifts are still in the mail (aren't grandmas the best?).

On Friday night, John and I rearranged our living room. As it was, there was no way we could comfortably fit everyone we'd invited to Emma's birthday party. Heck, we're still not sure just how comfortable it will be with that many guests anyway! We wanted to invite way more people, but it just wasn't feasible in our tiny 600 square foot apartment. But anyway, we LOVE the new arrangement. It really opened up the space! Of course, I didn't think to take a before pic (I never do until AFTER the fact), but basically the table and couch were switched. Here's how it looks now:

Oh, if you're wondering about the piano on the table...we're borrowing it from John's sister Jessica since he's in a piano class this semester. I'll be honest; I can't wait for the semester to end so we can give it back! We just don't have the space for something like that. We move it to eat, of course, but it ends up on our bed...or the kitchen counter...yeah, I want to give it back now! I think I'm going to put a blanket over that ugly treadmill in the corner, too.

And now for a couple of scrapping projects I did tonight. I made a new FHE chart! Yes, I already had one, but I was really getting sick of it. My scrapping has improved SO much since then. Plus, I wanted to add a couple more categories. I also redid the little magnets. Instead of random papers with our names written on them, we now have pictures! But I'll spare you those;) After all, they're pics I've already scrapped with anyway. Here's the new chart:

Doodlebug, Kimi's Kreations (full kit and add on)

I also made a new clean or dirty sign for the dishwasher. The original magically disappeared one day. Methinks a little fairy named Emma threw it away...she kept pulling it off the dishwasher to play with it. She loves to throw away "garbage," after all. (99% of the time she only throws away actual garbage, but every now and then we catch her throwing away something that is NOT garbage.) I'm going to have John get it laminated at school tomorrow. That way, when Emma plays with it, she won't be able to bend it as easily. Hopefully she'll leave this one alone...but I doubt it. In any case, I wanted to make a new one regardless, so it's no big deal. Here's the new one:

Hoo's My Boy, Kimi's Kreations and geniaBeana Scraps
Bark alpha, geniaBeana Scraps
Best First Date Ever, Kimi's Kreations
Gratitude, Kimi's Kreations
Rainy Days, MeganB Designs
Down by the Lily Pad, A Work in Progress

I have a new template to share today, too! Template 52 is a single page, 12x12" 300 DPI template in PSD format. It's based off the first of Emma's 2 Month pages. Here's the preview:

You can download it here.

Aaaand I should go to bed. I've got a busy day ahead of me: visiting teaching, grocery shopping (last minute items for Emma's party on Tuesday), more cleaning, and family home evening. It's gonna be busy!!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Template 51 and Super Scrappin' 7 Scrap-A-Thon LOs

Phew, did we have a busy weekend! Friday night, John and I went to an amazing oratorio on campus entitled "God's Everlasting Love." Wow. It was gorgeous and inspiring. Saturday started out with a stake primary (more like nursery in our stake) activity where the kids got to learn about various prophets. And, as per the norm for Saturdays around here, John had to work, and then do homework when he got home - thus limiting my scrapping time. So I honestly didn't think I'd be able to participate in very many Digital Scrapbooking Day festivities. BUT, miraculously, I was able to scrap 5 of the 7 GDS challenges on Saturday! I was able to finish up the last 2 LATE Sunday night (well, more like early Monday morning...). Sundays are super busy around here, what with church, meetings, choir, etc. We also had dinner over at Nathan and Jessica's. Day of rest? Rarely. Especially since church is from 1-4 PM - right smack dab in the middle of naptime. This is insanely uncharacteristic of me (I am SOOOO not a morning person), but I'm actually looking forward to church moving to 9:30 AM next year. At least then we'll get naptime in and have some time left to enjoy our day.

But I digress. Or ramble. Actually both;) I somehow managed, despite the madness of the weekend, to scrap ALL 7 of the GDS Super Scrappin' 7 Scrap-A-Thon challenges!! Yay!! It was SO fun. This was the first time I've actually had a chance to participate in Digital Scrapbooking Day and it was a total blast. Last November, I JUST started digiscrapping at the tail end of that weekend (but I did manage to grab some of the DSD freebies that were still up). In May, I didn't realize until AFTER I made travel plans for that weekend that DSD (in some form or another) occurred biannually. I planned to participate this time, but with the way things looked with scheduling, I didn't think I'd be able to do much. Adrenaline kicked in, however, and I was on a roll! I even got to do some DSD freebie hunting!

My house, on the other hand...well...let's not go there:D It's a serious disaster - and I can't blame it all on the almost-2-year-old. She's not the one who left clothes all over the floor...that'd be me. Horrible habit I've had for YEARS. Aaaanyway.

Now for my Super Scrappin' 7 Scrap-A-Thon layouts!!

Challenge #1 - Sketch Challenge with Andrea (using provided template):

Template: template 660, Andrea Gold
Kit: DSD Grab Bag, geniaBeana Scraps

Challenge #2 - Scraplift Challenge with Kimi:

LO Scraplifted from: eastoneman
Kit: Gratidude, GDS Nov collab - portion by Kimi's Kreations
Also used MLAS Sept Pixel Edition

Challenge #3 - Self-Portrait Challenge with Christy:

Template: DSD Grab Bag, geniaBeana Scraps
Kit: Gratitude (Nov collab), geniaBeana Scraps
Stitches: Sweet Memories, geniaBeana Scraps
Glitter: DSD Grab Bag, Kimi's Kreations

Challenge #4 - Make Mine A Mini Challenge with Jenn (using all pieces of provided mini kit):

Template: DSD Grab Bag, Kimi's Kreations
Kit: Sugar 'N Spice, Dancing Princess Designs
(This is my parents' house, by the way - I don't actually live there now, but it's still "home.")

Challenge #5 - No Photo Challenge with Debra:

Kit: DSD Grab Bag, Kimi's Kreations

Challenge #6 - Wordart Challenge with Holly (using provided "I Scrap to..." wordart):

LO Scraplifted from: Kimi
Kit: DSD Grab Bag, Kimi's Kreations

Challenge #7 - Font Challenge with Val:

Kit: Lil Dude, geniaBeana Scraps

Ooo, look what I just got in my inbox:


Now for today's template, which is of the LO above. Template 51 is a 12x12" 300 DPI template in PSD format, pre-adjusted for print bleeding. Here's the preview:

You can download it here.

As always, I love hearing back from you and seeing your LOs with my templates:) I hope everyone had a great Digital Scrapbooking Day!!

Hm, now to scrap those Halloween pictures or to take a nice warm vanilla sugar choice! Most likely, both;) I stay up entirely too late...I blame 3rd trimester insomnia. 32 weeks today, by the way. Oh, and I got 3 awesome packages from my mom today:D Yay! Baby stuff and birthday/Christmas presents for Emma. Woohoo!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Template 50!! And Another Grab Bag

I've got another grab bag to show off, and another free template to share. Woohoo, I've made 50 templates! And I have tons of LOs to convert to templates, too.

But first, geniaBeana has an awesome grab bag that you can pick up at her Elemental Scraps store or her store. Lots of awesome stuff, on sale now for only $3!! Check it out:

Grab bag includes 6 BRAND NEW products, such as a template pack, photomasks, a kit, and more! Check out what I did with it:

And now for template 50! Template 50 is a 12x12" 300 DPI template in PSD format. It coordinates nicely with template 49 below (also new - don't forget to grab it, too!), or you can use it separately. Template 50 is based on the second page of Emma's 1 Month spread from her baby book. Here's the preview of template 50:

You can download it here.

And now to get some sleep. Hopefully I'll get the chance to play during the day! Have a great Digital Scrapbooking Day!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Template 49, Digital Scrapbooking Day, and 100th Post!

Woohoo, this is my 100th post here!! How cool is that? What a perfect way to ring in Digital Scrapbooking Day this weekend! Be sure to check out all the fun events - there are lots of freebies and amazing sales to be found! And I've got a free template to share, too. I hope I'll get the chance to play, but weekends are pretty busy around here, so we'll see. But check out what's going on over at GDS this weekend:

Kimi's Kreations already has her grab bag up in the store, a $15 value, for only $4!! (Pssst, the GDS preview was made using her grab bag, too:D) Check it out (image is linked):

This pack is bursting with $15 worth of product! But's all a surprise! Inside you'll find:
-A full kit
-A coordinating alpha
-A glitter pack
-A template pack
-A pack of clustered frames
-A pack of photomasks
...over 230 MB total!

And so you can get an idea of what's in the kit, here's a page I made using one of the templates, the kit, and the coordinating alpha:

As for me, life is good. I can't believe Emma will be 2 in just 3 weeks (on Black Friday, in fact)!! And I'm due in less than 2 months. I still hope this little guy decides to come sometime between mid and late December (just not on Christmas or Christmas Eve) - we could sure use the additional child tax credit right now!! Money is super tight, but that's to be expected. We have MOST of the things we'll need for the baby and I'm almost all done with Christmas and birthday shopping. Ah the joys of having John and Emma's birthdays and our anniversary during the holiday season. And we'll have another birthday this time of year, too! Oh, and I pre-ordered our joint anniversary present: Harry Potter 6!!! Walmart is having an awesome deal right now where you can buy the Top Ten New Releases for $10 each - with FREE shipping!! Check it out here if you're interested. We have lots of packages coming soon: 3 from my mom with birthday, Christmas, and baby items; 1 from an awesome friend who made me a Mei Tai; Emma's baby book; John's birthday present; and now our anniversary present. Yay, I love packages! Another awesome friend recently sent her brother (who goes to school here and went home last weekend) up with a bag full of baby clothes for us! Yay! Just a few more things and we'll be all set.

And now for the new template! Template 49 is a 12x12" 300 DPI template in PSD format. And, starting with this template, all new templates will come pre-adjusted for print bleed issues. So when you go to print, you won't have to worry about anything being cut off the page (unless, of course, you add something to the bleed zone). Template 49 was made from Emma's 1 Month - 1 page from her baby book. The second half will (hopefully) be coming soon! Ideally this weekend, since I'll have another grab bag to brag about, but we'll see how things go. Anyway. Here's the preview:

You can download it here.

Thanks for stopping by! And have a great Digital Scrapbooking Day!!