Friday, December 28, 2007

Your Smile... (Layout)

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Just Playin Around

My kids have been taken hostage for the day! My husband's friend and his girlfriend came and took them for the day. They are doing Christmas in the Park indowntown San Jose, a carnival, and ice skating, how fun does that sound?

I am sitting here all by my lonesome. I really should be cleaning up since they aren't here to mess it up but of course I am not...yet! I will eventually though, I promise. But right now I am doing these fun quizzes on this website I found.

73%Living to 100 Years Old

Thursday, December 27, 2007

A Moment of Insanity...

And I'm not sure it will be brief.

Last night, I took the older boys to Target to spend their gift cards. I had one to spend too from my brother. Instead of Kyle getting silly toys that would get lost or broken... I let the child get a pre-paid cellphone. And it wasn't even his idea!

I mainly did this in hopes of instilling a little responsibility in him.. or rather allowing him to have a little freedom in hopes that he'd take things a little more seriously. Otherwise he gets it taken away. I really don't think children need cellphones, however I also need to know where he is and be able to reach him.

Right now.. I have the phone. I have not activated it yet and I am not going until his attitude improves. So far this morning he has not shown me that he deserves it... and yes I am regretting it already. It's kinda like a bad hangover lol.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

The Day After Christmas...

And you should see my house.

Which was clean (ish) before we left the house, and Im sure it was until we all got home. I went home with my mom because we wanted to watch a movie and Dan wanted me to relax before he had to go back to work. So, my mom brought me home around 11 and ALL the gifts were on the kitchen table.. I was entirely too tired to put anything away, not to mention there's really no where to put it so I just went to bed.

This morning before breakfast nearly every single package was torn to bits and toys everywhere. UGH. Right now the kids are quietly playing with some of their loot. So quiet that I am afraid of what they are really doing lol.

We got some fun pictures of the kids yesterday.. this one is one of my favorites. I took this one over at my mom's house. I love the look on Greyson's face... and Liam's little innocent devil grin is too cute.

A few Dan took over at my Gramma's house...

Our niece, Lexi-

Her new 12 day old sister, Makayla.

Our 6 yr old, Braeden.

Hope you all had a fab day.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Merry Christmas!

As I type this it is 11:59 pm.. one minute until midnight. My children are all tucked away in their beds... at Grandma's house! Hehe.. We went over to my mom's tonight to start watching the 3rd season of LOST because neither she or hubby got to watch any of the last season and the new season is a month away! So, we decided to leave them there since we have to go over for breakfast and presents anyway.

This year we are doing things a little differently. My mom recently moved to town so she is a 5 minute drive away. So, we took all the gifts over there and we will have Christmas breakfast and then open gifts. Much easier for us, we don't have to get a tree that we don't have room for, we don't have to worry about the kids getting into and opening their gifts early, and best of all I don't have to stress out over getting everyone dressed and out of hte house in an orderly fashion!

All their clothes are over there and waiting for them to get into them and Dan is going to cook breakfast for us all. Then it is gift time!

After that we are all traveling down to my Grandmother's for gifts and Christmas dinner. My brother and his wife will be joining us with the girls and my youngest brother will be there too.

We won't be heading down to visit with the inlaws this year; too much driving but I am sure we will see them for New Years or something.

Anyway, I better get to bed.. gotta get up at a decent hour to get outta the house. Have a great holiday!

In Need of a Christmas Something....EDIT

I don't want to say miracle because it's really more materialistic than what a true miracle is supposed to be but I really need Santa to grace us with his presensce in the form of the UPS man. My kids gifts are still in transit and I am so afraid they won't have anything to open tomorrow.. from us anyway. Things were so tight this year that we could only afford to get them one item.. and DH and I are not exchanging gifts. I really wanted to be able to get them something fun and exciting that it is quite depressing.

So, please Mr. UPS man.. make this momma happy by being able to make her kids happy for Xmas this year.

**UPDATE** I can relax! Everything's arrived safe n sound! Thank you Mr. UPS man!!

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Crabby Mommy

Not in the sense in which that usually means.....

Today it means, I am the mom of crabs. Yes, crabs. My 3 and 6 yr old are pretending to be hermit crabs... well actually fighting over who gets to pretend to be the hermit crab. They are hiding underneath a big sterilite tub wearing hockey gloves. Every once in awhile he lifts his lid and sticks out his claws.

It's really funny to watch.... I will have to get pictures lol.

Happy Holidays Y'all!

I signed up with a new blogging company tonight. This one is called Blogsvertise, I really like how they have thier requirements structured. You are encouraged to write real life content and not just post blatant ads for their clients. This is really how I prefer to write my posts. I don't like to annoy my readers with contant in your face ads. And this way I get to write about things I would normally write about.

I have yet to be approved so I am not even sure if I will be working with them, but I really hope to. I really love being able to contribute to my household bills and take a little of that stress off my husband who works amazingly hard to support all seven of us. He is my rock.

I promise to let you all know how this company works out for me! Have a great holiday season everyone!

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Get your groceries online..

I love having this service available to me. We have, which is the local chain near us. The only downside is that they usually forget 1 or 2 items. Normally, they are silly things I can live without or can get away with buying later but this time they forgot one of the more important items I really needed this week...they forgot the toilet paper. They also tried to give me someone else's jello fruit cups. That mistake I caught. I told the driver and he took them with him.

So now I have to call in the morning and get them to reimburse me for the toilet paper because I did get charged for it. And I forgot to get soda and frosting because I need to make more cake balls and I need caffiene lol.

Here's what I love about,

  • I love that if I have a set amount I can spend, I am able to see what is in my cart so I know when to stop.
  • I love being able to get it next day or even same day if you order early enough.
  • I love the promotions they offer. Sometimes I get free delivery or a free item.
  • I love not having to go into a crowded store during the holiday oh-my-gosh-i-forgot-this-season.

My only wish is that they would take their time to make sure the orders are correct and even double check it if need be. I will continue to use this service because overall they really do a great job. They are always on time, if not early, and their drivers are very considerate and helpful.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Arrr Matey!

Last week, Dan's boss gave us a $75 gift card to Walmart. I used it to buy some new movies I had been dying to see. I had them on my blockbuster list but they were brand new releases so of course there was a huge wait for it. So I just decided to buy them.

I got Pirates 3, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Ratatoullie, and Disney's Dinosaur.

Dan and I watched Pirates on Wednesday night and it was awesome! We missed it in the theater and we had to watch the second one on our little 13 inch portable dvd player so being able to watch this one on our new plasma tv was awesome!! We are going to watch Harry Potter tonight with the kids.

Speaking of tv's, I am thinking I would like to get a new tv stand. Right now we have a corner entertainment center, which I really like except that it's missing it's doors. So I think it's time for a new one. I'd like to get another one similar to the one we have now. Instead of having something that's more like a cabinet where the tv goes inside, I'd like to have one where the plasma tv stands on top. Especially since it's kind of tall and wide.

Right now we are watching the Backyardigans larger than life... ah the joys of having preschoolers!

Tick Tock...

That would be the sound of my biological clock ticking away. All this new baby stuff happening in our family has me really missing having a newborn. Call me crazy but the newborn age is really my favorite age. They are so soft and cuddly and dependant. Alot of new moms don't really like the dependant age, which is where the crazy comes in.

One of my favorite things was wearing my babies. I absolutely loved it and so did they. I don't know what I did before baby slings. I didn't have anything like it with my first 2 kids, I got a Baby Bijorn as a gift with my third but it was so hard to get in and out of and it didn't last very long. I had a ring sling with my 4th but my favorite was my wrap. I was able to use my wrap with my 5th son all the way up until he was over 2 years old and he absolutely loved it. His favorite position was piggy back. He'd ride around the grocery store on my back.. once he even fell asleep! I got so many nice comments about it, it was great!

Even now that I don't have anymore babies, I am still a huge adovcate for baby wearing and attachment parenting. I think that this style is so beneficial to everyone and it's just how I was raised, it just seems so logical and natural to me. My kids are some of the most independant kids and I think alot of that is because they feel secure. They know that I am always here when they need me.

Creative Team TOOT!

Recently, one of my creative team members, Iris, had one of her layouts spotlighted at the Sweet Shoppe and they loved it so much that they asked her permission to turn it into a template for their Cookie Cutter Challenge. How exciting!

The layout was really amazing.. she used the Friendship collab by myself and Micheline Martin.

Angel- click for full credits

Congrats again Iris!!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Twinkle Twinkle

I was just looking through my the wedding album that my sister inlaw made and even though I was there, the photos they had taken documented the event beautifully. The LED wedding lights they had strung all over the place were so twinkly and gorgeous. It was amazing!

Oh, here is a little funny story about their wedding, I was there with my then 2 yr old and 6 month old breastfed baby. Yes, the fact that he was breastfed is a key point. Well, my brand new sister inlaw took him on to the dance floor right after he nursed and danced with him, it was so sweet... sweet until he spit up all over the front of her dress! She didn't think it was so funny at the time and I did feel really bad about it but at least it was breastmilk and not formula, so it didn't stain. Phew, dodged a bullet there! I think since it was over 5 years ago, we can all have a laugh over it.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

It's A Boy Layout...

I am on a scrapping roll since I am on a "design break" lol.

Got another page done tonight.. I am just loving my new frames!!

This is my youngest's birth announcement photo, he's being held by one of his older cousins.

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Lots of new Stuff!

I guess the mood struck :)

I've got some fun new stuff for you all and it's all available in my OAKS store now!

I was just messing around on the computer the other day and I came up with what looked like glitter glue! I thought it looked fun and cute so I made this Alpha.

Includes: Lower & Uppercase letters and numbers 0-9, plus various symbols.

**All images created at 300 ppi, dropshadows for preview purposes only**


The Forces of Nature Paper Collection.

Includes the Four Basic Elements: Air, Fire, Water, and Earth.
24 grungy solids in all. Buy the full collection and save 33%!

Complete Collection





I have these frames all over my home and I really like them so I thought I would make some for you all to enjoy.

Set Includes:

1-4x6 inch matted frame

1-5x7 inch matted frame

1-8x8 inch matted frame

1-8x10 inch matted frame

1-12x12 inch matted frame

Collage Frame comes as a merged png and in layers so that you have the option of using it as a shadow box, as seen in preview. The separate frame piece IS pre-shadowed but all other finished pieces are unshadowed.

**All images were created at 300 ppi for quality printing, dropshadows added to final product for preview purposed only. 100% digital!**

Buy Them Here

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Hmmm Cake Balls...

Thanks to THIS thread at DST today I made cake balls. What are cake balls you ask? Well, Im glad you did because I didn't know either. So I googled for a recipe and found a very easy one at Turns out I had all the ingredients already in the house! That never happens to me. Every time I want to do something fun, I have to plan ahead. But not today!

I thought it would be a fun project for me and the little boys to do together and it was. However, we started this at 3 pm and I JUST now finished and it's 7:45 pm. I did take abreak to cook and eat dinner.

Anyway, what are cake balls? Here is the recipe:

1 (18.25 ounce) package cake mix
1 (16 ounce) container prepared frosting
1 (3 ounce) bar chocolate flavored confectioners coating


Bake cake as directed. Let cool for about 15 minutes, crumble into a large bowl while still warm.

Stir in container of frosting and mix well. Form small balls using either your hands or a melon baller. Place in the freezer for about 10-15 minutes so they are weell chilled.

Meanwhile, melt chocolate stirring constantly. Use a toothpick and a large spoon to coat balls. Place on waxed paper to set. You could even do muffin cups if you wanted.

My notes: I used a package of chocolate chips, but I found this was not enough chocolate so I added in some pure chocolate truffles I had in the house LOL! Hmmmm yummy.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Deck The Halls

Today, I got a break!

Amazing right? My husband was so sweet to me today. He banished me to my room for the entire morning, where I sat with my laptop half watching "The Prince & Me" and surfing the internet. He also brought me breakfast in bed and kept the kids downstairs and out of my hair.

Then my mom came to pick me up so that we could go buy Alex's birthday present, pick up some Christmas decorations, and we also had to pick up his birthday cake. Yes, it is my baby's birthday. He is 12 today. Twelve years ago, I gave birth to an 8 lb baby boy! Anyway, that's another topic. Back to the decorations.

We went back to the house and put up the new Christmas lights that she just bought. Dan brought home a box of lights from work and I wanted the boys to put them up on our porch but when we tested them only half the strand worked so we couldn't. I would really love to get some of those LED Christmas lights. They use so little energy and they can be used all year round. They cost about $50 to operate 2000 LED Christmas lights for 8 hours a day for a year! Sounds good to me.

Oh and I got my Christmas shopping done finally too! I cannot wait to watch my niece open her gift from us, it is way too cute! I love giving gifts.

Anyway, I am off to bed. I hope you all had a great weekend and have an even better week!

Friday, December 14, 2007

So much to do!

And so little time! Sorry I haven't blogged yet today, I have been up to my eyeballs in work today. I have literally been glued to my laptop today designing away like a maniac! What is it you say? Well,I can't tell you just yet lol. Sorry, but I promise you it will be well worth the wait!

I am also in the middle of redoing all my previews to get ready for the Grand RE-Opening of Purple Paper Flowers!! I am very excited about this store, I have very high hopes for PPF.

I am hoping to go up to my brother's hosue tonight to go meet my new niece, so I am excited about that too. I can't wait to get some pictures of the little one so I can scrap them. I really want to make her a pretty little Baby's First Christmas Ornament for her. I found a really nice one that you can have a photo put on it at Shutterfly. It's pewter with a little red ribbon to hang it from. Really pretty, I can't wait!!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Exciting News!

I am extremely proud to announce that Dan and I are auntie and uncle again!!

Miss Makayla Louis was born early this morning weighing a whopping 8+ lbs and 21 inches long. I don't have all the details yet, I only got a phone call from my mom who was staying with Big Sister Alexia while they went to the hospital. I am sure I will have more details and pictures soon!

It's really kind of funny because Alexia was so much smaller, over a pound and 2 inches smaller (she's my peanut) and she wasn't too much earlier than Makayla.. just a few days but the girls are exactly 18 months apart. Both born on the 13th's of their birth months.. Shala got what she wanted!! She told me before they got pg that she wanted another baby when Lexia was around 18 months.

I will have to wait til they get home to visit though because Dan won't be home tonight :( Ah well.. it'll be better that way :)


Yesterday I was beyond exhausted, I was so tired that I got offline at 9 pm and was in bed by 10:30. Usually, I am at the very least up til 11:30 or midnight. I don't sleep very well at night. I was taking Ambien and it was really helping but since I am paying out of pocket for them, I haven't been able to afford the $40 per week.

It never really fails though, even when I go to bed at a decent hour I end up tossing and turning for hours on end and if I happen to fall asleep right away I don't wake up refreshed like I should.

Which leads me to believe that maybe it is my mattress. We inherited a brand new mattress from Dan's parents when we first moved back to California. I'm not really sure why he accepted it when we had a perfectly good and very comfortable mattress that was only a few years old.

If I were to get a new mattress, I would really want a tempurpedic mattress. You know, the memory foam ones. That just sounds amazingly comfortable to me. I've used a Memory foam pillow before and I loved it. Just something about the idea of it conforming to every contour of your body, sounds extremely relaxing. I might even enjoy going to bed that way!

Does anyone out there have one of these? Do you like it? Do you sleep well?

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

On a Break

A Design break that is... just til after the holidays and then I promise I will have some fantabulous new products to hit the store. Doesn't mean I won't be designing if the mood hits, I'm just taking a little pressure off of myself to try to get out of the design funk I seem to be in the last few days.

I'll still be blogging though and maybe a little scrapping here n there, so I won't have completely fallen off the face of the digiworld.


I did this a few days ago, I was going through some of my old photos and came across some of Greyson when he was about 10 months old enjoying some yummy broccoli. It's still one of his favorite foods!

I know.. my children are strange lol.

Full Credits HERE

Christmas Lights

This is one thing I love about Christmas time, seeing all the festive lights all around town. Gives me warm fuzzies all over. We used to live in Pennsylvania and there was this one house, way up on top of a mountain (we lived out in the country) and every year they do up their house in a very elaborate way.

People in the area would drive up to see it every year, as there were always new decorations to look at, all lit up like a hotel in Vegas. It was amazing to see. That's one thing I miss about living back there. None of the houses decorated here can compare. I wish I had a picture of it to show you right now but I have enlisted my niece to get me a few from this year so I will have some in a few days to show you. I can't wait to see it myself!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007


So, now that we are all fully recuperated from our bout with a nasty stomach virus I can tell you about something that I received earlier in the week.

I got to try out the Gold Medal Wine of the Month club. I received 2 bottles of wine, one white and one red. A 2004 Bradford Mountain Zinfandel and a 2005 Belvedere Chardonnay. The wine arrived very nicely wrapped in tissue paper and a pretty bow.

It also came with a newsletter which I found very informative, since I am not a very big wine connoisseur. It gave me a little insight into some of our local wineries, on a more personal note. We have alot of different wineries in our immediate area so this was a good way for us to try out some that we might not other wise know about.

There was a pretty good recipe in the newsletter as well, it really made me laugh and well, it really made me want to try it out. Which I did and it was excellent! And being the great person that I am, I will share it with you.

Rosemary Chicken

  • 1-3 pound chicken, cut into pieces

  • Two glasses of Chardonnay for chef

Marinade Prep-

  • 1 tsp Rosemary, fresh

  • 6 cloves of garlic, fresh and peeled

  • 3/4 cup Belvedere Chardonnay

  • 1/3 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

  • Juice of one half lemon

  • Fresh ground pepper

Put all ingredients into a blender and pulse until garlic is finely chopped, take a sip of Chardonnay. Place chicken in a baking dish, pour marinade over chicken, and rub thoroughly. Finish glass of Chardonnay. Let chicken marinate for 30 minutes. Pour second glass of Chardonnay. Bake Rosemary Chicken at 375 degrees for 50-60 minutes.

Very very good recipe! After dinner, I took another glass of wine and took a nice hot long bubble bath. It was a very relaxing night!

Monday, December 10, 2007

L-O-N-G Day...

Mondays are generally pretty long.. getting back into the swing of things after everyone has been home for 2 days. Or rather cleaning up the very large mess they made :)

It's nearly 11 pm and my house has only been quiet for maybe 90 minutes. Granted the kids "went to bed" at 8 but they did not go to sleep til long after that. And DH wonders why I stay up so late?

My 3.5 yr old has taken to throwing very large tantrums when he doesnt get his way and it's really starting to get to me. It's seriously like fingernails on a chalkboard. 5 pm used to be HIS meltdown time... now it's Mommy's.

I think I was supposed to go over to my mom's house tonight and help her with her tree.. but I think we both forgot. I was just over there Saturday night and we had a very relaxing night. She made us dinner and we watched a movie. We watched 'Twisted" with Ashley Judd and Samuel L. Jackson. Very good movie, definately recommend it.

Anyway, I hope tomorrow is better. It usually is :)

Tis The Season!

You always see those signs on the side of the road or highways about car donations, but have you ever done it? I did it one time, several years ago but it was pretty much just a way to get rid of a non working car in exchange for a tax write off. Today, I heard about this site called "Car Angel" which is a non-profit organization that uses car donations to make videos for kids and teens.

The videos are pretty cute actually, take a look

They have given away over 2.4 million videos!

Friday, December 7, 2007

A Very Special New Product!

I have something very special for you this week. A collaboration kit between myself and Micheline Martin from Sweet Shoppe Designs. She and I have been working on this for months and it is finally ready! It will be available at One of a Kind Scrapz and Sweet Shoppe Designs.

Micheline and I met when we were both designing for Scrap Outside the Box and became fast friends, that was well over a year ago now and I am grateful for her everyday. Love ya girl!

For one week only, you can get the coordinating bragbook quickpage set for free! What a deal! Offer ends Dec 15th. And it's currently at an Introductory 20% Off!!

Friendship-The Collab


Sweet Shoppe