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Sunday, March 27, 2011

Apron Strings Week 3 Challenges

Okay, so I've been trying to participate in the Apron Strings Birthday Party Challenges for the past few weeks and did a couple in week 1 (see this post) but life has been interfering with challenge entry a bit since then. Darn kids, husband, 'real life' committments!! LOL!
Yesterday I decided enough was enough and sat down to answer the week 3 challenges. This is what I came up with ...

Added March 28th - YAY!!! Blogger is finally working properly. All the pictures are now on this post.
The challenges this week were:
Day #14 - Do something new to you on your layout. I misted with my brand new Tattered Angels Glimmer mists (Forest Green on the base and Pearl on the title letters, if you're interested). I've done a tiny bit of misting before but just recently found a scrapbooking store that sells mists so bought a few and this was my first time trying them out. I am VERY happy with the results!

Day #15- Use at least 3 different patterned papers. Check!

Day #16 - Balloons = round items; use at least 2 round items that are at least 3" in size. I kind of went literal with this prompt. Since I knew I wanted to scrap the pictures from LC's birthday balloons seemed appropriate. I have 3 on my layout and they are larger than 3".

Day #17 - Incorprate a box or block onto your layout. I create a pseudo present box using 4 pictures mounted on a square of cardstock. I then tucked a tag behind it with my journalling. If you squint, the ribbon kind of looks like a bow, no?

Day #18 - Use a recycled item on your layout. This was a toughie until I remember a cream ribbon I'd kept from a pair of pajama's I'd purchased around Christmas time. Voila! Both a recycled item and it became the ribbon/bow on my "present".


Here's a close up of my title with the Pearl Glimmer Mist.

Oh, and I had some fun with my Cricut and made these cute banners. Not a required element but a fun accent for my birthday layout.

Last, but certainly not least, I actually based my layout on this sketch which was the prompt for Day #13!

All right. That's it. Thanks for looking!

Friday, March 25, 2011

5 on Friday - March 25th

Welcome to another installment of 5 on Friday!
This week has been busy around here and we're not done yet! The older girls are on Spring Break. While I am enjoying the relaxing mornings without the usual rush out the door to get to school, I have found myself scrambling to find things to keep Marley and Paige busy. Marley has had a couple playdates but Paige hasn't yet. Hopefully next week I can arrange something for her!

Before I ramble on too long, let's get to my 5 for this week.

1. LC turned 2

I know I already posted on her birthday but here are a couple more pictures of her on that day. These are of her and her cupcake! (We're having family over on Sunday when I'll bring out the big cake but I wanted something small on her actual birthday too!)

She ended up eating the icing and sprinkles only. Typical!

2. Maui Album

It's done!!! Yay!!! Here are a few shots, for the entire album please check out the movie on my side bar (assuming I can get it to post etc).

The cover page. Now I'm really wishing I'd used the self-timer so I could have been in the picture. Looking back through all the pictures from the trip I noticed that we never got one of all 7 of us. Too bad! Next time!!

One of the pre-Cricut layouts. I did have my Cuttlebug though so was able to do some fun things with it. The palm tree I found at a scrapbooking store.

This layout has a hidden journalling tag.

A post-Cricut layout. Greg and I took LC on a day trip to Pai'a and up the volcano to the winery. This layout is from the beaches at Pai'a where we marvelled at the big surf. Our local beach was a calm lake in comparison!

Another post-Cricut layout. The close ups below are of all the flowers and leaves I cut out for the New Dresses page.
I counted and I did exactly half of this album pre-Cricut and the other half post-Cricut. How fun! Again I'd like to give a huge shout-out to my friend Jenn for loaning me her Cricut cartidges while she's in France. I had so much fun using them to decorate my pages. And having them both forced me to finish the album and inspired me to finish the album. Awesome!

3. Sea Monkeys

Marley was given Sea Monkeys for her birthday from her cousins Matthew, Sophie and Sadie. At first I was skeptical (and a little flabbergasted that they still made them!) but Marley was thrilled. She finally has a pet!! Joy! It took awhile for them to hatch and then you could barely see them but we were checking in on them this morning and lo and behold, they are growing! Check it out!

Okay, so I'm not sure you can see them in this picture. Those little white floaty things are the Sea Monkeys. They wouldn't really hold still for the camera! LOL!

Marley did feel the need to make some bunny ears though!

4. Bar Keepers Friend

This is another one of those gifts that I received with extreme skepticism but I am officially eating my words. Well, thoughts actually! This stuff rocks! Thanks Mom Day!!

I used it to scrub all the pen/crayon/felt/pencil crayon off the girls' craft table and it looks better than new! The wall and the chair will require something a little bit ... um, harsher. Actually, the wall will just have to wait until we repaint! LC is one challenging kid at times!!

5. OLW Update

I have yet to write more tasks in my album but I am more or less on target with my organizational goals. I rejigged the girls' craft area again and like it even better now. They have more room on their table to craft/colour/do homework since I moved their supplies onto the "bar area". Yes, our house had one of those mirrored bar areas in the family room. Complete with scary glass shelves! Some day (after we win the lotto) I will take great joy in personally ripping it apart! Until then ... we'll find a use for it somehow!

But I digress, I was talking about my organizational efforts.

My plans to tackle the Master Bedroom this week fell short but as soon as I finish this posting I will be gathering boxes to start the mammoth task of going through all the girls' toys and books. Keep, Toss, Donate/Sell! Those are going to be my boxes. Watch out world!!

Wish me luck!

Okay, that's it for now. Enjoy your weekend everyone! Now that my Hawaii album is done I can finally turn my attention to Paige's baby album (somthing she has been patiently waiting for me to start). First up this weekend though is to try and tackle some the Apron Strings Birthday party Challenges. I've been diligently writing them all down but not able to get to them.

But first ... toys ...

See ya!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Christine Turns 2!

I can hardly believe that our Little Christine (LC as I call her here) is 2 today. Where did the time go?

March 23, 2009 - minutes after birth.

March 23, 2011 - all dressed, cleaned up, piggy tails in, and sitting in her new Dora Chair. 'Ora (as she calls her) is her favourite!!
Doesn't she look so big now?!

Here are some other images of this morning.

The Official Birthday Height Measuring!

Comparing the girls' heights - Marley was a good inch taller at 2 than both LC and Paige. Poor Paige was the smallest. I wonder if that will continue ... the middle child being the shortest?

The loot waiting on the kitchen table this morning!

LC got lots of help from her sisters.

Playing with the new horse carrier ...

... and Dora book.

And for you scrappy types, here is the card I whipped up last night (at 10PM!)

The "2" is popped up on dimensionals but it's hard to tell from this picture. Sorry! 
Can I just say that I LOVE my new Cricut!!! Especially since I bought new cutting mats and blades so it actually works well. And a big shout out to my friend Jenn who loaned me all her cartridges over Spring Break. Not only have they helped me make a few cards, but I have been going nuts cutting things out for my Hawaii album. If all goes according to plan, I will show you the finished album on Friday. Yay!!

Okay, I've got one of Marley's school friends here for a playdate so I guess I really shouldn't hole myself up in the office. Thanks for stopping by!


Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Spring Break So Far

Tomorrow is LC's 2nd birthday and I've still got a few days til my 5 on Friday post, so why am I posting now?! Just because.

I wanted to share some pictures of the first official day of Spring ... around here anyway. It was technically the day before the first day of Spring but the sun came out and its heat was sooo nice! I took the girls over to a local park and here's what transpired ...

They tore around the (thankfully desserted) tennis courts on their bikes/scooters. Here is Paige - don't let the winter jacket fool you, it was warm-ish.

Here's Marley on her scooter.

I just can't get used to that gap!

LC found the only puddle for miles! Of course!!

Then we went on the swings.

Marley monkeying around on the rings.

Paige on Marley's scooter.

And of course, on our return home Marley climbed the tree. She's getting pretty high these days!!

Thanks for checking in with me. I've got to run now and bake a cake for a certain little almost 2 year old while she's still napping! Oh, and I've been incredibly crafty the past few days too. I'm a few short layouts away from completing my Hawaii album. Once it's finished I'll post a slideshow. Hard to believe it's been a year since we were basking in the sun on the beaches of Maui.
Paige still asks when we're going back. Bless her!

Friday, March 18, 2011

5 on Friday - March 18th

For once I am not feeling like I have nothing to talk about today. This has been an eventful week on all fronts - kids, crafts, personal, you name it. I am exhausted! Today marks the last day of school before a 2-week long Spring Break and I am really looking forward to NOT having to rush 3 little girls out the door at 8:30 in the morning, packing a lunch for Marley (I've talked about that headache before!) and waking up LC after too short a nap in order to pick up Marley at 3:00PM. Here's to lounging in my PJ's until noon!!! Whoo hoo!!

But I digress, here's my five random things for the week:

1. OLW - February and March assignments

I promised to apply myself to this over the past weekend and I did. I just wasn't able to blog about it until now. February we were to gather 9 pictures that depicted our word. I found this really tough as my word is hard to visualize in that way. So I had put it off until this past weekend. But here's what I eventually came up with:

From the top left my images are; the filthy "clean" pan (see this post), my "Release" t-shirt that I won from, a picture of red balloons in a tree (see below for a close up), the backside of my Release title from January (see this post) with the word "EMBRACE" on it (my secret second One Little Word) and then some images I took from the web - "Pain! U just have to LET GO", dandelion seeds blowing in the wind, a butterfly being released, a flock of graphic butterflies and lanterns being released at a lantern festival. I chose all these images because I felt they depicted what I am trying to achieve.
A relinquishing of pain, anger and frustration.
A lightening of body and spirit.

While putting this together I decided to add the journalling. It's not a quote, just my thoughts.

And now onto March's assignment. We were given the task to ACT on one thing this month. To write it down and commit to a day when we'd do it. Here is my page.

The page dividers Ali is using are an assortment of sizes and configurations. This one has a flap that (as you can see) attaches with string. Anyway, here are the close ups:

The top part of the flap on the right has a tag with the prompt "This Month I" and then we were to fill in the rest. So I chose "Get Organized". I had many ideas and tasks zooming around my head but they all seemed to be in the same vein of cleaning, decluttering or getting tasks crossed off my never ending to-do list. So ... now it's official!! Gasp!

The bottom slot is purely for decoration. The 1 is to remind me to focus on one thing only. Ya, right!!

With the flaps opened it looks something like this.

Another reminder to myself to do it now, not to procrastinate as is my usual habit!

Just a little bit of complaining!!

One of the templates Ali sent us this month was this calendar into which we were to put when we'd committed to do our One Little Thing. I intend to write in more but at the time I did this I knew Spring Break was coming up and that I wasn't able to commit to a specific day just yet. On Monday I plan to revisit this and put in the following tasks: Declutter and clean the Master Bedroom, Organize the toys (OMG what a job that is going to be!), and clean up the office/craft room. That should be plenty to worry about during Spring Break, right?

The last template was a journalling spot to document our experience. I wrote down my thoughts about starting the assignment and at the end of March I plan to write down my thoughts about actually doing the assignment.

2. Project 12 - March 2011

I started this last Sunday and it sat out on my drafting table all week!!  I put bits and pieces together in 10 - 15 minute spurts until I was mostly happy with it. I think my displeasure with it is because I wasn't able to do it in one sitting. It's okay but I know I can do better. I must admit, the brown paint looked heavy going on but I'm pleased with it now.

I was going to show a couple more close ups but in an effort to keep this post in the realm of "readable in one day!!" I won't.
Moving on ...

3. Soccer Fun Day

Or, as I referred to it, Soccer Not So Fun Day!
Sunday was the wrap up tournament for Marley (and lately Paige's) soccer season. It was also rainy, cold and generally a miserable day to be outside all morning! It was also the first day of Daylight Savings so we were all extra tired! Fun times!! LC was still sleeping when Greg and the girls left so we joined them at 9:30 for their "break" - face painting, Timbits, etc. LC was happy enough to have a Timbit but got pretty upset when I wouldn't let her take it onto the turf field.

Ah, the emotional ups and downs of an almost 2 year old!!
We stayed to watch Marley and Paige go through the skills drills and part of one game but then we had to leave. LC was done!

Marley waiting for her turn to shoot at the radar gun.

Paige charging at the ball - her kicks were NOT the most powerful out there but she had fun trying!

The very important warm-up before the game.
Since I wasn't there for the medal ceremony I settled for taking pictures of the girls with their medals once they got home. Paige's medal actually belongs to a teammate that moved to Australia in December. She knows that it was just on loan and will be winging it's way shortly Down Under!

I really don't know what is up with Paige's smiles lately. She insists that she WAS smiling. You be the judge!

4. What happens when loose teeth start dying!

We learned a valuable lesson this week about loose teeth. Marley's two upper teeth have been loose for ages now but were stubbornly sticking around. One in particular would bleed every now and then which caused us to hope it would fall out soon but ... nothing. Then Marley noticed that it was turning grey. Grey? Eww!!! Time to call the dentist! After a quick appointment to pull the offending tooth (and it's loose neighbour) this is what Marley looked like.

Luckily the dentist gave her this handy box to help the tooth fairy find her teeth!!

So tiny ...

5. Now for the personal bit ...

Paige's preschool will not be continuing next year. This doesn't directly affect our family as Paige will be going to Kindergarten in September and LC is still too young to go to preschool but I am unbelievably sad about it. As the current President, I feel like I've failed the preschool, it's families and the kids. As an Alum of the preschool, I am saddened to see a place that gave my girls such joy have to close its doors. As a member of the community I am disheartened that we can no longer support this kind of institution. The Parent Participation Preschool only works if there are parents willing and able to participate!
I could get on my soap box about the messed up attitudes when it comes to putting our kids first, volunteerism, etc, etc,etc ... but I'm not going to. I will instead try to put that energy into shutting things down correctly, going out on a good note, and generally closing that chapter of my life without regrets. If any of you out there have reason to take your kids to a PPP, DO IT! The friendships you'll make will last a life time and your kids will be forever enriched because of your willingness to play with them.

Okay, I think I am finally finished this monster post! Sorry!  I will try to keep them shorter in the future!
Have a great weekend!