Showing posts from July, 2010

Creativity at its Finest!

Just a really quick update for you ... I just returned from a fanTAStic creative night with my dear friends and snapped a couple photos to share the wonderful art done this evening! You might remember my friend Leslie from {Words of Me Project} threw a challenge out there to us in blogland to come up with three words that mean something to you, and create some sort of art with those words. Some of us this evening did just that . . . Cindi's Words: Reach, Heal, Possible Peggy's Words: Serenity, Gratitude, and I never got the 3rd word from her - uh, oh! Laura decided to continue working on her New Mexico vacation album - it's so gorgeous and stylish. I love it! And me, well . . . I had a vision. I love when I have visions. It's like a light bulb goes on in my brain and I know exactly what I want to do, and I won't stop until it is done. My vision for this challenge started with a canvas and some mountains . . . then, I worked on a little bit of the sky . . . nex

31 Days: Day 5 - All of the Above!

My Creative Focus for today: Write. Create. Be. Happy Friday, friends! And thank you so much to all of you who supported my post at Laugh Out Loud yesterday! Seriously, that was one of the most thrilling things for me - I'm a blog dork, I'm sorry! And having something I have written appear on someone else's blog was just - awesome. Now, on to my next adventure. The Scrapbook Cellar!!! Did I ever tell you about the Scrapbook Cellar ? You might believe, with all my previous mentioning of it, that it is a store where I probably go to scrapbook. Well, that is only partially right. It is a place where I go to scrapbook ... but it's not a store. It's actually my sister, Laura's, basement. Yes, affectionately called, "The Scrapbook Cellar". And there I gather once a month (when possible) with three of my closest friends - my sister, my friend Peggy , and my friend Cindi .  It is the best time a girl like me could have. Seriously . Now, if you don

31 Days: Day 4 - Post Featured on LOL!!!

My Creative Focus for today: Laughter! A few weeks ago, a blogger I admire greatly (Gigi at Kludgy Mom ) introduced me to Laugh Out Loud , when a post of hers was submitted and selected to appear on the site. I had seen the LOL button on a few other blogs before, so it was high time I head over to this Laugh Out Loud blog and check it out. I mean, I love to LAUGH , and I prefer to do it OUT LOUD , so this is the perfect place for me! Laffy Lady, the head laughter guru, has got it going on! What a fantastic place to visit for great laughs! Smart writers - funny stories - truly a great time from start to finish. So, I thought I'd try it . . . maybe something I've written would fit. Yesterday, I received an email from Laffy Lady telling me that, yes, a recent blog post I wrote would appear on Laugh Out Loud ... TODAY!!!!   HOLY COW!!! I can't believe it! I mean - pinch me, I must be dreaming! This is the very first time a post of mine is being featured on another b

31 Days: Day 3 - Be

My Creative Focus for today: Be Today I am . . . tired. I'm fighting a cold that the girls have managed to pass from one to another, now to me. It's hotter than "H-E-Double Toothpicks" here today, and in the midst of my crankiness, I am trying to . . . Be. PG is on day 14 of his 25 day trip - and I am so ready for him to be home. I am also ready for school to start (anyone else out there with me?) I am tired of hearing my own voice say the same things over and over again, "Leave your sister alone", "No, you can not have another cup of juice", "I do not want to put Tom & Jerry on again", "No, a popsicle is not a good breakfast". I am a broken record. Today I mowed the lawn and worked in the garden. There was so much sweat dropping out of me that I made the Hoover Dam look like the desert, I swear. This same garden that I was so happy with on Monday (and provided the most beautiful tomatoes and basil you have ever see

31 Days: Day 2 - Doodling

My Creative Focus for today: Doodling What to do with three young children, and the need to create? You break out the Crayola, of course! Nothing on the box says its for kids only, so I did what any "I Must Create" Mom would do ... and joined right in. I'm in a bit of trouble, though. School Supplies are on sale EVERYWHERE. I've already made a few purchases for the new school year. That's not where the trouble lands, though. It has to do with MY need to break open the new markers, crayons and glue sticks, and make some art. Yes, that's what tonights creative adventure was. There is something so mesmerizing about art supplies to me, even if they are Crayola. The colors, the textures, what they produce when used. The possibilities really are endless. I sat at the kitchen table absolutely lost in what I was doing.  I found myself using blues and whites, adding pinks and yellows, working freely and openly with my small little brush, like I was Rembrandt

31 Days: Day 1 - Photography

My Creative Focus for today: Photography CHALLENGE:   to take some really interesting photographs. Pay close attention to the lighting, colors, and focus (oh, yeah, that's a big one that I often have a problem with - the ol' FOCUS thing!). CREATE a delicious meal using some of the vegetables we have grown in our garden. Since today was a work day, I was really up for incorporating dinner into my creativity adventure. It was pretty easy to do that . . . because I had the perfect menu idea. And the ingredients all fit well in line with some great photos. One of the things I really wanted to do this year was improve my photography skills. You see, I am NOT a photographer. I can't even claim to do it as a hobby. Most of the good shots you might see on this blog have been taken by PG (with the exception of one or two.) But I long to BE a good photographer. I do. So, today is about stretching my wings and letting go of the inhibitions that I usually carry with me when I have

31 Days. Write. Create. Be.

Here I go ... off on a creative adventure! Where will it lead? I have no idea. What will I do? That, too, remains to be unknown. Will I share it with you? Well, like most of my life, yes. I'm joining dear Leslie over at Words of Me Project on "31 Days: write. create. be. " What am I hoping for? That I will actually allow myself a little bit of time, every single 31 days, to create SOMETHING. It could be spent taking an extra special photo, or creating a special picture with my kids crayons and markers. Whatever it is, I am hoping that I find some time to connect with my creative soul that often gets placed on the back burner during the day to day chaos of this life. You might remember back to the beginning of the year, when I introduced my 2010 Word of the Year (CREATE), I was all gung-ho to spend the year doing just that - CREATING. But, unfortunately, I have fallen quite short in the Create Department. With Leslie's encouragement and inspiration, I'

My #1 Hot Mess Ella

Lordy, Lordy, I pray for the teacher who gets my Ella. You know Ella. This Ella ... ... who swore there wasn't any paint on her face. She's a Hot Mess ! And this Ella ... ... who really prefers to do all her reading with her glasses on. Yep, a Hot Mess ! And this Ella ... ... who heard there was a "smurf" movie coming out, and felt she would be best for the female lead. Oh, a Hot Mess she is! Oh, yes, and the Ella who did this ... ... because she "was hungry" (side note: I really do feed my children! I promise.) Yes, that's my  Hot Mess . Then there is this Ella ... ... always making me laugh ... and this Ella ... ... that darn marker again. I like how she has a spare on the couch next to her, just in case the first one didn't quite work well enough for her. Yes, that's my Ella, my little Hot Mess ! And, yes,  my  Ella will be starting preschool in September. Three 1/2 days a week, she will be under the care and guidance of another. I

The Million Dollar Question

While driving into the city this week, and while stuck in traffic, I found myself getting a good education in the fine art of billboard displays all along I55. Some made me chuckle, some made me sad, and some made me day dream. Yep, day dream. All in the comforts of my Honda Odyssey (might make you kind of nervous to be on the road with me, huh? No worries. I am a very responsible driver. I just allow the mind a little wandering freedom when I am in a quiet car. It's actually pure heaven to me - traffic and all.) So the billboard that started the daydreaming this week . . . the Illinois Lottery. Yep, they are giving away $56 MILLION DOLLARS this week. $56 MILLION DOLLARS. Now, I am not a Lottery playing person (I guess that's why I never win.) I don't know if $56 MILLION DOLLARS is what the lottery normally gives week to week. This week, it seemed like, gulp, A LOT OF MONEY.  I mean, could you imagine? I could . . . you see, that is where the day dreaming began . . .

A Missed Photo Opportunity

My hands are changing. My skin is changing. My knuckles are a little more chapped than usual and it seems all the lotion in the world doesn't help it. I have a few scars here or there, and the veins are starting to be a little more visible than in my younger days. My fingers look a little more wrinkled, too. Yes, my hands are changing. For the record, I've never had beautiful hands. And I'm OK with that (as if I had a choice). The hands I have, have done me well through the years, and I am blessed with them. They help provide an income for my family (I do a great deal of typing at my job), they cook, they clean, they fold, they drive, they write, they create. Yes, they are good hands. Strong. A bit stocky. But good hands. A few days ago, while waiting for a .pdf file to open on my computer at work (it seems like it takes those files forEVER to load), I found myself sitting at my desk looking down at my hands and thinking. My thoughts drifted quickly to my Grandma Josephin

Now THAT'S the ticket!

We are now at Day #8 of PG's 25 day business trip . . . and all is going well. It seems like my family meeting last week (you know the one, right? When I called for MANDATORY PEACE and HAPPINESS from my 7 and 3 year olds?) was really a great start to some happy days here. Yep, it's all been good. But, you know me. We don't stop at good . (I know, I have to chill!) So, let me tell you my latest hair-brained idea . . . Actually, I can't take full credit for this one. This is all the genius work of a blog I stumbled upon last week called  Zippy Chix . The idea? Well, taken directly from Zippy Chix's blog, the basic idea is to  use tickets to reward positive behaviors and to inspire motivation in your little ones. Then, whenever they want, they are able to "cash in" their tickets for a special reward. You can read about it further in Zippy Chix's post titled; " Kid Currency ".   So, since we have turned over a new leaf in our "Peace &am

Sentiments LONG overdue!

I have been a bad blog friend ... so bad. But I am hoping that this post will make up for it! I've got some LONG over-due "Thanks!" and Happiness! sentiments to give to some wonderful blogland friends! So, please allow me to include you in the joy . . . First, to Anna . You may remember my 200th post back in May. In it, I gave away a few little goodies to one lucky friend,  and lovely Anna over at Frosted Pentunias WON! Yippie! I mailed out a little package full of happiness to Anna. Well, you'll never believe what this silly girl, Anna, did! Shortly after mailing my package to her . . . I received the most delightful mailing . . . from HER to ME!!! Oh, the joy and pitter patter I felt as I opened her gift . . . and you WON'T BELIEVE what I received . . . If you think it was beautiful . . . IT WAS!!!! If you think it was magical . . . IT WAS!!!! If you think it was one of the most delightful packages I have ever been blessed enough to received, I'll tel

It's Not Easy Being Green

I may have mentioned before that I am not a gardener. Oh, don’t get me wrong. I totally love and reap the benefits of our garden every single day – but actually doing the deed is clearly not my favorite summer time activity. I am much more suited for sipping a pina colada by the pool. Yes, now we are talking. However, with PG out of town, I am being held responsible for the upkeep of our garden. Augh. To further elaborate on the love/hate relationship I have with my garden, some photos. The Love Our Basil. I LOVE our basil. LOVE LOVE LOVE it. Especially when paired with some fresh mozzarella, some tomatoes, a little EVOO, and salt and pepper. SO Good, and one of my favorite flavors of summer. Mmmmm . . . Our Tomatoes. We have a lovely bunch coming in right now. Although they haven’t turned red yet, thoughts of them meeting Mr. Basil in a great big bowl make me . . . HAPPY. Or just slicing them up and eating them on their own. Oh, the joy. Our Cucumbers . An equally delight