Friday, January 31, 2014

Paper Crafts & Scrapbooking

Hey there! I have a fun layout to share with you today. It was published in the February 2014 issue of Paper Crafts & Scrapbooking (link to purchase here)… there are a lot of really stellar and beautifully made projects in this issue. Definitely worth checking out!

"10 Things" is a page about my very own, adorably hot, Hottie. There are so many things to love about him, 10 is really just the tip of the Hottie iceberg. Seriously so lucky to have this dude by my side….

Such a great way to usher in the month of LUUUUUV. Hearts and Hotties, yes please.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Derby Brain

One of the hardest things about moving to a new city is starting over at the things you love. For me a big challenge has been roller derby. I love this sport. I've gone on and on about that here on my blog, I've raved about how much my teammates have meant to me. I couldn't wait to get started with the league in our new area…. to continue my derby career… but it's been hard, in a few different aspects. 

One. It's been really, really challenging to break into the personal side of the team. They have all been very polite to me, don't get me wrong. Not one single person has been mean or rude in any way… but they all have their friendships and groups that they chat with and I have had a hard time figuring out how to build relationships and get to know these people. I walk into practice each night and hear the girls connecting around me, having fun, and I just smile politely and head to the track. It's taking a lot of time to get to know them because it's such a big league.. and I feel VERY isolated on this new team, extremely alone. So that's tough.

Two. The physicality of it. It's a VERY different pace than my last league. This is a great thing, it's far more challenging and physically demanding. I learn new skills and drills every time I strap on skates now, which is refreshing. I love this part of my new team. They are good, really good… and that will make me better. The talent blows me away. It's taking me awhile to get up to speed and get used to all of the differences, even just fundamental ones like different floor surfaces, etc.

I've also decided to take the leap and try out for the All Star Travel Team… which really, in my mind, I have no business trying out for… but I'm doing it anyway because I've never really been one to dip my toe into the shallow end of the pool to test the temperature. I'm more of a jump in and see what happens kinda gal. This tryout is my cannonball (and I might drown, just sayin'.)  There are 6 total sessions which takes a month to complete. Not gonna lie, there have been countless times when I thought about quitting in the middle of a tryout. I picture myself skating over to the bench, taking off my skates, and explaining that I'm not quite ready for this yet. But I don't. I stick it out. I make it through tryout after tryout, completing things I wasn't even aware I could do. 

Sometimes I walk out of there disappointed. I wish I had more time to prepare, to learn the drills so that I wouldn't be doing things for the first time under the scrutiny of an important tryout. Then I try to remind myself (but mostly Hottie just reminds me, because I'm whining about how much I suck.) that this was just a jump in and see kind of thing… that I will get specific feedback at the end of it… that I am building a bond with these teammates just by showing up and finishing… and that even if I don't make the travel team this year I can still be VERY proud of myself for trying…. and maybe I'll make some friends in the process. 

Saw this quote on Instagram on the first day of tryouts and 100% took it as a sign, because I read it just after I had almost convinced myself I wasn't ready….

So that's it. A little derby on the brain for you.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Snow Fuel

It's been snowing here off and on for over a week now which means two things… one. I'm very cold (and need to finally invest in some snow boots). two. I've been inside scrapping for a week straight practically non stop. Pretty much the only thing I've left the house for is roller derby (even lake effect can't keep me away from the track.) and Costco (to pick up more photo prints.)

The creative juices are flowing and I look forward to sharing what's been on my desk. Here's one of the projects….

Kinda don't mind if the snow continues because it's a great excuse to stay in and create… but then again, I'm not a big fan of snow days because it means the kiddos are all bugging me, being loud, and eating all of my food. Crossing my fingers for that sweet spot where theres snow but not so much that I have to shovel the driveway twice a day… looking outside and realizing that snowmaggedon part two may be upon us. hmmm. Time to hunker down with some American Crafts.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Daddy Moments

I love that she has a Dad that will agree to go out and build a snowman with her even though what he really wants to do is stay inside where it's cozy and there's no fear of losing a toe… I love that when the snow is too puffy he convinces her that making a snow mountain is just as cool… I love that when they shovel together it turns into some kind of shenanigans like one of them hopping onto the shovel like it's the teacups at Disneyland and the other one flinging them around until they both get dizzy and fall down….

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

American Crafts Winter Week

It's Winter Week on the American Crafts blog, and it couldn't be better timing. There's snow on the ground in our part of Ohio with single digits in the forecast for the next 7 days. brrr. Time to look at some winter layouts that I created for this assignment. 

This one is my fav. The splatter of ink paired with painted veneer is a good fit for the layout. I love the way it turned out looking like the photo is in a magical snow flurry.

Perhaps the best part of this page is the photo of me and my sis. I'll never forget the sheer joy and glee we shared during her visit when we came out of the movie theatre to find it snowing. I quickly handed over my phone to a stranger and said, "Please! You have to take a picture of us! We're from California!!" laughs all around. 

Saturday, January 18, 2014


One of my scrappy goals this year is to make one layout about me each month…. with a photo of me (even though I dread photos of me)…. about me, right now. What I'm doing, how I'm feeling…. victories, defeats (hopefully more of the former).. etc. Because I really need to tell my own story too.

I was inspired to do this by Corrie Jones (click here to see what I'm talking about). Reading her blog last year I was so impressed by the eight on eight series she does. Each month, no matter what, she makes time to complete these pages about herself. I can only imagine how cool it feels to be able to look back on the year and see exactly where you were and what you were thinking each month. Woo hoo for this idea, and three cheers for actually participating!

Friday, January 17, 2014

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

and All That Jazz

Every now and then I create a layout that makes me want to do jazz hands when I look at it. Maybe it's the mood, collection of products, and colors… jazz hands! (yes, I'm a weirdo.. you probably already knew that.)

On a sidenote.. what is up with her hair?! Aiy aiy aiy. Maybe one of these days she will let me do her hair again. Right now it's a struggle to just get it brushed after a bath. Pick your battles and laugh at the pictures later, I always say. Actaully, I never say that, but I should probably start.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Project Life 2013 Wrap Up

I finished up 2013's Project Life this past week and I must say it feels amazing. I have completed two years worth of scrapping for my family, and didn't even miss a week. I'm especially proud of myself for  continuing with PL even though the last few months have been so rocky.. .and there were times when I sat down to document and thought, well this is not what I pictured. Times when I was tempted to skip weeks because they weren't as happy or fulfilled as others. But that's not real life… and I managed to find a way to put things in there, good and bad, without bringing the whole project down into a negative, depressing spiral (to match my mood). You might catch some glimpses of what I'm talking about. 

Here's the final pages...

I'm planning on continuing Project Life in 2014 since it's something I still look forward to doing each month (I typically will do 3-4 weeks worth at a time. It seems to work well for me). But I do have some goals with it this year… like trying to include the older boys and Hottie more. I find that these pages are dominated by the little two kids. I know that's because I spend the majority of my time with them and the boys are off in their own spaces doing their own thing, or in Aidans case, out with his friends… so I don't tend to take as many photos of them, because they just aren't "around.".. but I want to make an effort to capture glimpses into what they have going on too. It's important. And hey, maybe this will prompt me to try and involve the boys more in family things. Couldn't hurt, right?

Thursday, January 9, 2014

American Crafts Gallery Assignments

Did you see all of the stellar American Crafts Design Team Gallery Assignments? They are all so beautiful. Still kinda pinching myself that my projects are in there too. Here's what I made last month...

***First one removed for publication***

Seriously can't get enough of the Dear Lizzy Polka Dot Party line…. some piece of it is always on my desk to work with. Can't wait to get ahold of the new AC lines too. Aren't you all excited about CHA next week?! I'm bummed I can't attend this one but always love watching the Instagram and Blog photos and all of the collection reveals. New product is always a good thing. I'll probably share some of my favorites here. That's it for today… back to kid wrangling for me. 

Monday, January 6, 2014


You know how people say everyone has a twin? Some random person in the world that looks just. like. them.? Well awhile back I was watching Dezmond in the bath and I kept thinking, who does he look like? He reminds me of someone… and then I put my finger on it…

 Bill freaking Murray.

It's seriously uncanny. The jaw, the unique smile, even the freaking eyebrows! Hottie says he doesn't see it at all but I can't stop finding the similarities… I mean you guys, it's not like he is doing his best Bill Murray impersonation… he doesn't even know who he is! (yet) The other crazy part is that my kid is all about the laughs, he's always trying to make us giggle.. so the similarities don't even stop at the looks!

I mean, come ON, are you with me?

Thursday, January 2, 2014

One Little Word

I'm participating in Ali Edwards' One Little Word workshop this year. I almost decided against it because I kept thinking of words that just didn't quite fit. Also, how much time can I really dedicate to this right now? Last year I chose the word balance and did some work on my own focusing on implementing it into my life… it worked great. For the first 6 months or so I thought about balance and what that looked like for me. I learned how to balance my needs with my families.. my health… fun… work. I felt like I had finally mastered the art of juggling. Then I lost that focus over the past couple of months while everything has been happening with our family and dropped a lot of balls in the process. Maybe taking Ali's course will help me keep this years word in the forefront of my mind. I chose….

verb: resolve; 3rd person present: resolves; past tense: resolved; past participle:resolved; gerund or present participle: resolving
  1. 1.
    settle or find a solution to (a problem, dispute, or contentious matter).
  1. 2.
    decide firmly on a course of action.
noun: resolve; plural noun: resolves
  1. 1.
    firm determination to do something.
    "she received information that strengthened her resolve"
    "he made a resolve not to go there again"

    This word definitely chose me. At first I thought it might just be the most depressing word to assign yourself… then I thought, no, it's actually pretty perfect for me right now. I need to have resolve to get through the curveballs that life has thrown at me lately. I need to resolve problems as quickly and firmly as possible. I have GOT to resolve to take care of myself in spite of what's going on. No excuses, just action. Bring it on 2014.

    And you know I already made a layout about it. :)

     (sorry about the cruddy photos. The lighting in our rental home is TERRIBLE and I have to resolve this problem since there's about a foot of snow outside and that means no photo shoot there either!)