Monday, December 9, 2013

A New Chapter

Craft shows are over for the season. For the amount of stress they caused, I'm really going to have to think about next year. Christmas will be here in a couple of weeks and I'm no where ready. The tree is decorated, the windows have lights, but the rest of the decorations aren't up yet. I'm changing things up this year, less is more. I'm going to be very particular with my decorating this year.

You know the saying, "The Hardest Thing to see is Right in Front of Your Eyes." Well that happened to me within the past few days. For a very long time I had always felt something was missing from my life. It took me years to find what I thought it was.... and it was here for a while....then slowly began to disappear without explanation.  I went through a whole range of emotions always ending with an unhappy feeling. 

Something clicked and I had to find out, I opened a line of communication. Plain and simple, no. Never intentions of a relationship. I'm fine with that, I really am. Quite relieved actually. I feel as though a weight has been lifted because all of this time I thought it was me. It never was. I wish it wouldn't have gone on as long as it had. I wish the falseness, ( for lack of a better word) was never given. God has given each of us a voice, use it. It is better to live with the truth (even though it may hurt at first) than it is to live a lie. Eventually I will talk to my family about it. They've been played too. That hurts me the most.  

I've closed a very long chapter in my book. I was happy to receive the answers to my questions. The chapter just went on for a few more pages than it should have. I am happy! Others have even noticed a difference in my demeanor and want to know what has changed. My next chapter has just begun.

My husband drives me crazy, I don't understand him. I drive my husband crazy. He doesn't understand me. My son, our son. He is my joy, my life. 
Around 1:30 yesterday afternoon, my guys returned from their hunting weekend at camp. When I heard them yell hello as soon as the garage door opened, my heart skipped a beat and after hugs & kisses and listening to the hunting story again, it was right there, it's been here the whole entire time. They are the ones that complete me.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Crazy oh so Crazy

Life is so crazy. I'm going crazy. I have my first craft show in 3 days and I'm not ready. Found a box of my cards down in the basement (JOY!) NOT! Somehow they got damp or wet and the envelopes stuck to all of them. (Insert heavy sigh with tears here.) I don't want to waste them, so somehow I'm going to try to figure out how to reuse most of them only if it is the fronts. I'm creative, right? In the midst of creating my items for sale, I forgot that I did not finish my gift card holders. Tomorrow night will be spent trying to finish them and whatever else I discovered I forgot.

This week I am the host of Crafting By Designs new challenge. I am challenging every one who would like to join us to an Anything Goes with a Twist of Christmas. Create anything your little heart desires, as long as it has something to do with Christmas. The fabulous Rick St. Dennis is our sponsor and he has graciously donated 3 digis from his store. Please click on Crafting By Designs to go right to our blog and get all of the information. While you are over there please show some love to our wonderful Design Team. They are such an awesome group of talented ladies.

I chose Rick St. Dennis' Christmas Couple to create my card. I used my own combination of colored pencils, chalks and added a little bit of  rub on to give it soft, vintage tones. The paper is from Michael's Recollections Open Stock and the ribbon was found in my leftover ribbon can, the sentiment is from Clear Stamps.
Personally I think Mrs. Claus is really rocking those shoes! I love her shoes.

Craft show readiness is calling me. Please drop me a line, let me know you were here. I love reading all comments. Please become a follower. I would love to have more followers. When I reach 50, I will be offering a little blog candy.

Have a great day!


Friday, November 1, 2013

Red & Black, Black & Red

November! Where has the year gone? The crazies have begun. My first craft show is in 15 days! Am I ready? NO! Am I close to being ready? NO! That damn September put me so far behind.

Ike's Art is the awesome sponsor for Crafting By Designs challenge this week. The challenge is very challenging, quite easy actually. Anything goes with a twist, use the colors Red and Black! Easy peasy! Click on Crafting By Designs to go over to our blog. You'll find all of the details and the link to Ike's Art over there. One lucky winner will win a $15 gift certificate.

Time is of the essence, not a lot to spare. Ike's Art generously gifted the DT a digi of their choice to use for the challenge. As soon as I saw this image, I knew what I wanted to do and when time slows down a little, maybe in 2014, I have a few more ideas I'd like to put on paper.
All paper is Recollections from Michael's. The "For You" tag, I'm really not sure. I found it in the bottom of my desk drawer.

And last night was poured down rain. My son did get some treats, quite a lot actually. People were giving out doubles and triples because of the weather.
Give up on what he was? ...... He was a "Cereal" Killer! A little play on words. Easiest costume ever!

Cleaning is calling me. Clean house today means play with paper day tomorrow :)

If you are a follower of my blog, wonderful. If not, why? I can not guarantee a fabulous blog post every week...But I will try. Every day musings and paper....Some days they're good, some days they're bad. 
Have a great weekend! Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

September...Yep, I could have done without it this year.

Hello Blogland! It has been so long since I have blogged. Life became a little crazy in our house in August and is now just finally settling. I've been crafting, well getting back into crafting, but haven't blogged. In the beginning of September, we (me, hubby and son) went fishing. It was a gorgeous day and at a lake that we have never fished before. We set up on the shore and was there all day long. A bald eagle even flew in and perched in a tree next to us. It was starting to get dark and the clean up and packing process started. My most fabulous day ended with me getting this:
Basically I fell in the lake while washing off my hands and I tried catching myself with my hand. I didn't break anything, but caused severe deep tissue damage. My x-rays showed something funny and 2 weeks later I had an MRI. The MRI showed that I have a little too much calcification growing in my wrist, severe arthritis in my thumb and the beginning of RA. My orthopedic doctor stressed the importance of me making an appointment to see the Rheumologist...o.k. fine, no problem. My cast came off on September 25th. One of the most happiest days of my life. son who is 12 said to me, "Mom, look at my face, it doesn't look right, I can't smile." Instantly the wheels started turning in Maximum Overdrive, all of the tests I knew to give for a stroke were flying out. Trying not to alarm him in the process. Off to the ER we went. The ER doctor diagnosed him as having Bell's Palsy. Over and over again she told us in her 30 years of being an ER doctor, she had never seen a healthy 12 year old boy with Bell's Palsy. We scheduled an appointment with the pediatrician the next day. The pediatrician diagnosed Danny with Lyme's Disease. Bell's Palsy is one of the symptoms of  Lyme's Disease. He asked all of the questions...a little baffled that all of the symptoms did not occur at once. Danny's symptoms came one by one and began last spring. He prescribed the highest dose of antibiotic and gave us a script for blood work. 2 days later he called me, "Mrs. Duff, just as I suspected. Daniel has raging Lyme's Disease." "Dr. M. must you use the word Raging?" "Yes, Raging is the appropriate word." (sigh)
I have done so much research on Lyme's Disease, I think I now know everything about it. Become educated about it. You can be bit and not even know. Lyme's IS NOT contagious and can not be spread from human to human. However Humans may become infected from their animals, cats & dogs. The animals can bring the ticks in from the outside, leave the animal body and go on yours. The ticks that carry Lyme's are so small, rarely do you know you are bitten, until after the fact. Danny was so afraid that the kids in school would make fun of him or treat him differently. Not want him around, sitting next to them in class, being a gym partner and even sitting with them at lunch time. Happily NO ONE treated him differently. He even found out a few of his friends either had Lyme's at one time or knew of someone that had it. A good article can be found here.

Danny is Lyme's free, his Bell's Palsy is gone and is still his happy go lucky self. I went from a cast to a brace. I'm still wearing the brace. I'm trying to wean myself from using it so much, but I still have a lot of pain. I  see another orthopedic appointment in my near future.

So anyway...sorry for rambling. I played along with Crafting By Designs this week. Lacy Sunshine is our fabulous sponsor. I had so much fun creating my card, our challenge:  Anything Goes with a Twist, Purple & Orange. 

The image I used from Lacy Sunshine is called Elenor and the Mad Scientist. I am in love with the Mad Scientist! He is simply adorable. I used Fibra-Color Markers, Colored Pencils and my Blending Chalks to color the image. The papers and ribbon are all from my stash. Please stop over Crafting By Designs for all of the details on the new challenge (Beginning October 23rd.)
Let me know you were here, leave a comment, become a follower and get crafty! 
Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, July 21, 2013

The Wedding

Yesterday our family had a wedding. We've had 2 other weddings, the first being my niece in 2008, the second being my daughter in 2010. This wedding was my sister's son, her oldest. The oldest boy. Wow! The past week had been crazy for me. Work, weather, baking wedding cookies, keeping house in order and preparing for the wedding. Katie asked me if I would join her and her girls the morning of, would I please take the getting ready pics. Of course! I loved every minute of it. Watching their nails get done, snapping pics, watching the hair and make up, snapping pics. Going back to the hotel, the girls putting on their dresses, helping Katie get into her dress, snapping pics. I knew that Katie and Benjamin were getting married that day, but it didn't occur to me all day. Make sense? I was preoccupied. I woke up Saturday morning, my guys still sleeping, while putting on a pot of coffee, I began to get weepy. Childhood memories of Ben were creeping in. I said enough and was off to take girly getting ready for a wedding pics. After Katie had her gown on, it was time for me to go. I had to get home and get ready myself as well as my guys. I looked at Katie and she looked like a Princess. A true Princess. We hugged and then it hit me. Tears started to fill my eyes. In a few hours she was marrying Benjamin, my spud.
Benjamin was born my senior year of high school. I couldn't wait for him to arrive, I would be an Aunt. I would be the best aunt. He would be my buddy...forever. Ben was 3 weeks old when I watched him for the first time. My sister and brother in law went out on a Saturday night. I was in heaven. Oh I held him, rocked him, changed him, bathed him, changed him and bathed him and me after he projectile vomited on the two of us. I even woke up in the middle of the night to feed him and in the morning too, to give the new parents a break. I couldn't wait to get home from school every day to see him. My mom was his daycare and I still lived at home. My sister would come after work, pick him up and hug him and ask, "Did you get a new perfume?" Only because Ben and I would nap on the couch together almost every day. He changed our lives. Things were different now. I would witness my dad coming home from work, a union carpenter, get on his hands and knees and crawl around on the floor with this baby. 
When Ben was old enough to understand Christmas and the Christmas specials, I was the one that watched Rudolph with him. My sister called me and said she wouldn't be home, "Rudolph's on tonite. I'm not going to be home. Ken will be here, but he doesn't care that it is Rudolph. Please watch Rudolph with Benjamin." Of course I would do it. Together we curled up on their couch, side by side with a little bowl of some sort of snack and watched Rudolph. Sometimes I would pick Ben up from preschool when my mom wasn't able to. Ben and his preschool best friend would tell me how they were going to be Air Force Pilots when they grew up. One time during preschool, I watched Ben for an evening. His first Scholastic Book order arrived, I read him, "I'll love you forever." I barely made it through the book, by the end tears were pouring down my cheeks, Ben just hugged me and said, "It's o.k. Aunt Shi-Shi, I love you." As he got older we did more things, we have too many "Thumb Spit" Swear Secrets too count. Conversations changed from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles to "Don't tell your mom I'm telling you this. But one time..." 
I could just go on and on. It takes a village to raise a child and I was very fortunate to be in that village.
The ceremony was beautiful. The words spoken, from the heart. The love Ben and Katie have for each other is so very obvious. Weddings are crazy, so many people to talk to, so many things to do. The bride and groom made their way around the room after they ate dinner. They reached our table, Ben gave me that look he always gives me and then came the hug...followed by the tears. The words I wanted to say, the words I had rehearsed over and over wouldn't come out. The ones that did make it out, "I love you." 
You see each time I looked at Benjamin yesterday, I didn't see him as the handsome, successful 27 year old man that he is, I saw him as that little baby I waited all day for to arrive. The 4 year old that came into my work dressed in his Ghost Busters jumpsuit complete with the back pack with a bouquet of flowers on Valentine's Day for me because I was alone that year. The 5 year old on his first day of school. The cub scout that was so proud of the Pinewood Derby car he made. The young teenager I would take to the demolition derby at the fair. The Valediction of his Senior Class, The college graduate.
Ben and Katie, Congratulations! I love you both so very much. 

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Happy Birthday America!

Happy 4th of July! A day filled with picnics, parties and fireworks! A day spent celebrating America's Freedom. We will be spending this long holiday weekend with my family in the mountains. I can't wait until we get there. 4 days with no alarm clocks and no schedules. 

This week at Crafting By Designs, I am hosting the Anything Goes - "Show Us Your Colors" challenge. Create anything just as long as it shows the colors from where you are from. Don't forget to let us know what those colors are too. Our own DT Sister, Tammy, is our lovely sponsor for the challenge and has generously gifted a fantastic paper prize pack. So click on the link above and take peek at the inspiration, if you have come to my blog from there, please become a follower. Leave a comment and let me know you were here.

Enjoy your long weekend with family & friends. Be safe and take the time to enjoy the little things.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Family...It's all in the timing

Hello Blogland! This week over at Crafting By Designs we are having an Anything Goes Challenge. A Day for Daisies is our sponsor and one lucky winner will win 4 digis of their choice. So click on Crafting By Designs and take a look at the beautiful inspiration our Design Team has created.

I chose the Free Hand Butterfly 1 from a Day for Daisies. for my creation. I used one of my Unity Stamps to stamp on it, then fussy cut it out. The papers are from my stash. Mostly DCWV. A very CAS card, but those are my favorites to create.

I turned 45 (gasp!) this month. This by far was the hardest birthday for me. I've come to realize that I have passed my middle age point. I seriously doubt I'm going to live to be 90... I've started to realize what is important and what isn't. The most important thing(s) to me are Family and Time. You can't pick your family. God decides that for you. Some family is good, some family is bad. Go with the flow and make the best of it. I however, have been blessed with an incredible family. Yes, we have our dysfunction, but that is what makes us US. I love them with all of my heart and soul. Now in some cases, your family doesn't necessarily mean they are blood family. They are your chosen ones. The ones that know everything about you and love you anyway. Chosen family still has their own form of dysfunction, but they are the ones that you just couldn't get through life if they weren't there. I am also blessed when it comes to chosen family. I have my circle of 3 very special women, all entering my life at different stages and have remained there unconditionally. Lisa, Kathy and Elisabeth. I love these 3 with all of my heart.

Now comes the part about TIME. Time is the most important gift you can give of yourself.
My sister and I were discussing what we might like for our birthdays, they are 11 days apart. Not really coming up with something we decided the gift of time would be enough. That is what is most important. Spending time together.
Our brother gave us (including our mom) a gift card for a local establishment. He told us he wants us to go out and spend the day together. Have lunch or brunch and enjoy each other's company...perfect.
Summer has just began and our schedule is packed. We have so much to do around the house, but at the end of last week I decided that the landscaping, cleaning and laundry could wait. We (me, my husband and our son) HAD to head to the beach. One day, sun and fun. Toes in sand, butt in water. We put everything aside and went to Lake Erie for the day. All day long Danny kept telling us what a great time he was having and kept thanking us for taking him to the beach. The work can wait, kids and memories can not.
Time can never be regained once it is lost. In any relationship you give the time of yourself. A little hand written note, a phone call, a short visit. It doesn't have to be lengthy. Just chatting among family and/or friends. No party, no entertaining, just a chat that hopefully includes much laughter.

So many things have happened in my life. January weighs heavy on my heart when my friend Elisabeth lost her 2 babies in a car accident. Life changes in a blink of an eye. Live your life with no regrets, love the ones in your life as if there is no tomorrow.
Sometimes  you just have to stop, throw everything up in the air and tell yourself it can wait.
Remember you can never get it back...once it is gone, it's gone.


Saturday, June 15, 2013

Father's Day

Hello Out There! And again and again I fail to keep my blog updated. It really is such an easy, simple task, why I can not keep up with it is beyond me.
This week over at Crafting By Designs we are having our Anything Goes with a Man/Masculine/Boy Twist. Perfect for Father's Day. Our extremely talented DT Sister, Rene is our hostess. Bugaboo Stamps is our wonderful sponsor, generously gifting 7 images (of his or her choice) to our winner.
I decided to let my son pick the image I wanted to use. I created the Father's Day card he is going to give to his dad.
Perfect image and perfect verse as we are a huge peanut loving family. Danny will be giving it to his dad today, a day early because it has been a family tradition to hit the local amusement park on Father's Day. We meet up with my husband's family and have a ball.

As Father's Day is tomorrow, I find myself missing my dad so much. Today is also my dad's birthday. He would have turned 70. It's been 10 years. They say as time goes on, it gets easier. In some aspects I suppose it is true, but there's not a day that I don't think about him or am reminded of him in some way.

When someone you love becomes a memory, that memory becomes a treasure.

Me and my Daddy in 1972. He caught a 26" Walleye on the Allegheny River.
Enjoy your weekend and celebrate those special men in your life!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

May 2013 - I Feel the Love Project

Hello! I can not believe it is the end of May! Where did the time go? I know it sure has gotten away from me. I haven't played with paper since last week and really wanted to work on a couple of challenges tonight. I was on facebook and came across Madison's post about the I Feel the Love Project for May. I went over to her blog and read the story. Immediately 2 card ideas came to mind and I went downstairs to play.
I am copying the post from Madison for the I Feel the Love Project, May 2013.

Madison is such an amazing young lady. A senior in high school, Madison formed this group to send handmade cards to different recipients each month. Just a kind gesture to show love, support and prayers. Please stop by each month to see who the new recipient is going to be, if you have a little extra time, create a card, write a note....brighten someone's day. You can find Madison's Blog right here.

These are the 2 cards I made tonight. I am mailing them off to Madison tomorrow.

For Reggie:

For Ashley:

And now Madison's Blog:

Honoring a Special Father
Andrew, Ashley, Sandy, Raelynn, Reggie (Dad), and Ryan  

The I Feel the Love Project will be collecting cards in May for Reggie Nelinger so that they can be given to him in June in time for Father's Day. We would like Mr. Nelinger to know just how much we love and support him as an amazing father to his four beautiful children. This project will be a complete surprise to him as it is being arranged by the IFTL Project and his family.

This is Reggie's story:

Fifteen years ago, Reggie Nelinger, an electrician, held the hand of his sweet 5 year-old daughter, Ashley, while his wife, Sandy and  her little brother, Andrew, heard the doctor state their daughter/sister had Wilms', a rare kidney cancer that primarily affects children. Reggie was there being the best dad he could be all those long days and nights as his sweet daughter fought for her life. She beat the odds that were stacked against her despite losing one of her kidneys. For the next decade and a half Reggie got to see his daughter grow into a beautiful young lady. Reggie was able to teach Ashley to drive, take her camping, watch her graduate from high school and begin to plan her life out as a young adult. He was blessed and understood the blessing God gave him with Ashley and never took for granted the gift that was given to him as a father. 

This past January, Ashley was diagnosed with a very rare form of cancer completely unrelated to the cancer she had as child. It is called rhabdomyosarcoma, an aggressive cancer of the connective tissues, which in Ashley’s case is attached to her sinus passage. Not only is this cancer a bit of a medical baffle due to its rare state, but Ashley only has one kidney and that makes chemo and other forms of treatment more challenging to treat than normal. Reggie and his wife are now watching their child battle for her life once again. 

All the painful memories of the first battle are brought back to memory, as well as the feelings of helplessness, sleepless nights, and the worry about finances. For Reggie there is the added burden to be a provider for his family in a time when all he wants to do is be there by his child's side. It is Reggie's big heart and positive outlook that helps his family lead the fight for Ashley's life all the while helping to maintain some level of normalcy for his other three other children and wife during this difficult situation. Reggie is a dad that needs to be recognized, a dad that has not only stared every parent's worst nightmare in the face once, but now twice.  

***Please help us to honor Reggie by creating a card for him that says thinking of you, stay strong, great job dad... or whatever moves you.  Thank you so much.  It will mean more than you know to Reggie and his family.  

If you are so inclined, you can 
also create a card for Ashley as well.

To follow Ashley's progress and/or to find out how you can make a donation towards Ashley's treatment-   
 Facebook page - Angels for Ashley Nelinger 
or send an email to

If you would like to be a part of this project...  
All you need to do is:

Submit your hand crafted card/s by May 31st to:

Madison Womack
IFTL Project
P.O. Box 1203
Atascadero, CA 93423

Project #21

May 2013 Collection

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

The 22nd Birthday

Hi Everyone,

This week I am the hostess of the Anything Goes with a Twist Challenge at Crafting By Designs. The twist I chose this week is Paper Piecing. I've only created a few items with paper piecing, so I'm challenging myself as well. I hope you hop over to visit and play along with us. Our DT sister, Cindy Leek is gifting a very special prize package from Close To My Heart for one lucky winner.

For my project I decided to something with owls. Owls are my niece's favorite and it was her 22nd birthday yesterday. A perfect handmade gift. I started off by painting (2) 5x7 white artists canvas'. Michael's has pretty good sales on them at times, usually $1.00 each. I drew the owl's faces and wings freehand and cut them from card stock, I used my circle punches for the eyes and the body. The owl's body is made up of 15 circles. I distressed all of the pieces with chocolate brown ink. The cardstock and design paper all came from my huge paper scrap stash.

There is no right or wrong way to make these adorable little owls. They are just so cute and whimsy.

This is my niece with her owl pictures. I call her Sally and have since she was a very little girl, her name is Lauren and she turned 22 yesterday. There are not enough words for me to express how proud I am of her. I can not believe she is 22! Seems like yesterday we were playing with my make up and I was fixing her hair into little pig tails and she was getting combs and brushes stuck in mine. She excelled in school all her life. Lauren was lead trumpet in the band and had a part in every musical during her 4 years in high school. Lauren went to college, was able to graduate a full semester early and was chosen to student teach in Ireland before graduating from college. Now she is a substitute teacher trying for a full time teaching position.

I think she liked her present.

Today I had a very special surprise when I logged onto facebook. Sandi Genovese showcased my Dangle Card on her facebook wall. I watched her scrapbook showgram and made the card. A Mother's Day card for my mom. I posted a pic on her wall over the weekend and today she shared it with all of her fans. I'm so excited!

I'm sorry for such a lengthy blog post. Please stop over Crafting By Designs and play along.
Also, thank you so much for stopping by. Let me know you were here, I love reading your comments.


Friday, May 10, 2013

A few days late and a blog short

In honor of Mother's Day this weekend, I would like to honor my Mom. My mom is my rock. My best friend. I love her with all of my heart and soul. She knows when something is wrong, even before I do most of the time. My mom has the best mom hugs. And even after all of this time, I still go home just for a mom hug. I've tested her patience throughout my life, I'm sure I've caused quite a few of her gray hairs, but through it all, she never once turned her back on me. She loved me unconditionally. This is the song I had sung in the church when Dan and I were married...for my mom.

I Love You Mutti!

And now on to the challenge...

When I joined the DT at Crafting By Designs I thought for sure I would keep my blog up to date...WRONG! So, as usual I'm a few days late.
This weeks challenge is Remembering Your Childhood. Ignacio from NICECRANE DESIGNS is our sponsor and gifted the design team a few Vintage Childhood files. Oh my! I had so much fun creating for this. I chose the Dolly Dingle Christmas Set. Ignacio has donated a very generous and most awesome prize for our winner, plus he donated 2 more sets! That's right, we are going to have a 1st, 2nd and 3rd winner. Please stop over Crafting By Designs and check out all of the details.

My images are colored in with blending chalks. I've added a little rub on here and there. Most of my paper is from DCWV stacks or comes from my scrap bin. Little embellies are Recollections from Michaels. Enjoy!

Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Mother's Day

Hello! I've let my blog slide a little....sorry about that.
Today is all about Mother's Day. It is just around the corner and I'm actually ready and not scrambling the day before to make a card.

My cards are very clean and simple. CAS seems to be the style I always go back to. I love the layers upon layers and embellies everywhere, but when I try to create that way, it looks like a big jumbled mess. Yuck!

I've been trying to use up papers in my scrap bin, which seems to be growing minute by minute. The card on the left is a 1/4 fold card from DCWV and the one on the right, A6 (I think) from Recollections. The paper is from an ancient Color Bok pad. Embellies are from Recollections and the Kangaroo Sticker, Me & My Big Ideas.

Please make a stop at Crafting By Designs and play along with us. The challenge will run for a week and let me tell you we have an awesome sponsor with an equally awesome prize! I'm not going to tell you what it is, you're going to have to go have a look for yourself!

Thanks for stopping by. Comments are always welcome!


Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Spring Flowers Blog Hop

Hello there. Welcome to the Crafting By Designs Spring Flowers Blog Hop. Hopefully you found me through Rene's Blog. If you get lost along the way, you can always go back to Crafting By Designs to find your way again. The whole line up is posted there.
Our Design Team has come up with the most beautiful creations to welcome spring. QKR Stampede is our sponsor for the Hop and has graciously donated 5 Digi's to one lucky winner. And all of us would like for you to Hop and play along with us.
Here in my neck of the woods, the dreaded white stuff has finally quit falling from the sky. The birds are chirping, the peepers are peeping at night. The tulips and daffodils are waking up and popping up through the ground. The windows are open and the fresh air is pouring in. Ahhhh spring.
I chose this cute little digi for my creation. I'm pretty CAS (Clean & Simple) when it comes to creating. I do not own Copics and love to use chalks for my coloring.

I colored in the image with my chalks, added a little rub to make it pop. All of the papers and alpha stickers are from my stash. I'm trying to use up all of the odds and ends before cutting a new sheet of paper. The ribbon is actually from the Dollar Store. I love sunflowers. I believe they have character and these little ones are the cutest.
***I do have Blog Candy for this Hop!!!*** One lucky winner, chosen at random will win the 4 packs of seeds shown in my picture. Those are my most favorite flowers of all. All you have to do is become a follower of my blog, leave a comment letting me know you are a follower and an email address so I can get in touch with you, should you win. I will use to pick a winner and will post the winner Tuesday, April 16th after 4:00 p.m. est.
I hope you are enjoying the hop and decide to play along with us. Please leave a little love for the other Design Team members.
Now I have taken up enough of your time, get back to hopping! Hop on over to Tammy and take a peak at her beautiful creation.
As always, thanks for stopping by and HAPPY SPRING!!!

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Our Family

What can I say about family? You can't pick them like you can pick your friends. They can make you so mad at times that you just want to move far, far away... Family also know every single stupid, silly, embarrassing thing you have ever done in your whole life and can not wait to bring it up at the most inopportune moment. BUT...they're your family. Your roots, where you come from.
Being the youngest of 3 is very hard...contrary to what my older sister and brother may say. They say I was spoiled. Spoiled isn't the word I would use. I would just say that Mom & Dad loved me more :)  I think my sister and I shared a bed until I was 5....yes...I peed the bed too...Terri LOVES to remind me of it...We shared a bedroom until I was 14. That is when Terri got married and moved out. I couldn't wait to have a bedroom all  to myself. Guess what? I was lonely and I missed her like crazy. BUT I got to have sleepovers at her house and at her house I could do things that I couldn't do at home.
Then there is my brother....ahhhhh my brother..... Jimmy did the all of the normal big brother things. He tried to get me to eat a spider (dead of course), tried drowning me in the swimming pool every chance he could, ended actions or sentences with, "Don't tell Mom or Dad or you'll get it worse." Something happened, he moved out and finally accepted me as his little sister and we would hang out together. And now that my dad isn't with us anymore, I see my brother in a different light. I watch him, I listen to him and I can see my dad in him.
Of course growing up I had the fear of Jim and Maureen instilled in me. I'm almost 45, my dad is gone, my mom is 72 and I still have that fear instilled in me. I thank them for it. My mom and dad did the best they could with what they had. Growing up wasn't always a garden full of roses, but with the thorns, we learned to appreciate the beauty of the rose. We may not have had the best clothes, the newest this or that, but we had love. We were taught lessons, we were taught to respect and we were taught to help one another. Oh and the saying, "My mom and dad are going to kill me." well....they don't, they never do. I'm still alive and let's just say I tried them in many, many ways.

And in the end, they are my family. I wouldn't change a single thing about them. I would go to the ends of the earth for them.
I love them with all of my heart and soul.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Anything Goes with a Twist

I'm a day late with my blog post, I'm so sorry. I've been trying to kick this whatever bug I've caught and it's not working...(sad face) I'm giving in tomorrow and going to the doctor. My son will also be going with me. I had him at Med Express on Sunday, 5 days of antibiotics and there really hasn't been any improvement. (sigh)
Anyway....if Mother Nature isn't going to show us any signs of spring, the fabulous Design Team at Crafting By Designs will. Julia is our hostess of the challenge this week. Her creations just amaze me. Our Anything Goes Challenge has a twist this week, Vintage Easter or Spring. Ignacio at Nicecrane graciously gifted the design team digi files to use for the Challenge. It was so hard to choose! All of Nicecrane's info, links etc. can be found over at our Challenge, right here. Please stop over and take a peak at the beautiful designs. These ladies amaze and inspire me everyday. I chose the Vintage Easter Bunnies and these 3 beauties are what I came up with:
Card bases are from Recollections. The paper varies from Colorbok, DCWV and whatever else I found in my paper stash.

I hope you all get a chance to play along this week.

Time to get ready for my date with the heating pad (my best friend this week) and an after dinner cocktail of Robitussin.
Wishing you all a very Blessed Easter.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

I Feel the Love Project - March 2013

YAY! Finally! I've been wanting to create a card for the I Feel the Love Project for the past couple of months. I was determined in January, but life had other plans. My creativity went by the wayside because I was too sad to make anything. I am now getting back into the swing of things.
I've been following Madison for over a year now. I do not remember how I happened upon her blog, but let me tell you, she is one AWESOME teenager. Madison is the founder of the IFTL Project. Every month she blogs about someone who needs a pick me up so to speak. "We" make the cards and send them to her, she in turns sends them to the recipient. This month the cards are going to Claire, a 4 year old little angel who was recently diagnosed with Ewing's Sarcoma. You can read about Claire and Madison right here.
This is the card I made for Claire, I hope she likes it. The inside reads, "With a Hoppy Hello"
And while I was down at my desk, I made a couple of cards for Crafting By Designs. Rene is our hostess this week, an Anything Goes Challenge with a twist, the twist being "Wedding Bells are Ringing." Your creation can be anything wedding related, a card, a thank you, a shower invitation, a favor, an engagement card, even an anniversary card. Stop on over and play along with one of our weekly challenges. Just click right here.

I think the 2nd card would be great for an engagement or a wedding.

As always, thank you for stopping by.
Drop me a line and let me know you were here.
I love reading your comments.



Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Take time to smell the Flowers

Hello ~ Much needed mental therapy tonight. A couple of challenges to work on and my mood was instantly lifted. In the middle of the night, Mother Nature gave us a gift of 6 to 8" of snow. First school was delayed, then an hour later it was canceled. I gave myself a one hour delay for work. That gave my husband some time to shovel a path to my car and give the road crews some time to do their magic. By the time I left for work, around 8:30, the roads were just wet with spots of slushy snow. That was a relief.
However, when I was leaving for work, I noticed the temperature on our freezer was off. I opened it up and the food inside was thawing...We've had this freezer for about a year and half and this is the 3rd time it has broken down. My hubby made the repair call, tomorrow morning between the hours of 9 and 12. We'll see when the repairman arrives. I made the phone call this afternoon to the executive offices of a BIG KNOWN STORE that sounds like EARS. Never again and I mean never will we buy another appliance from them. Anyway.... on to the challenges.
The first challenge is from Cuttin and Stampin. It is the Weekly Challenge #9, use a flower stamp. The most talented Doris from Mom's Been Scrappin is the hostess. Her creations are beautiful. Stop by and say hello.
I created 2 cards for the challenge. I knew which stamps I wanted to use and decided to heat emboss. I haven't used my embossing powder in so long, I missed it. The first card I just used regular markers (I don't own Copics - I know! GASP!!!) and a little bit of chalk. For my second card, I used all chalk. Basic white cards from Michael's, Recollections. Paper, I'm not quite sure. Found in my stash.

Now the second challenge I created for tonight was over at Crafting By Designs. The fabulous Rene is the hostess for Getting Ready for Christmas. Non-traditional colors. I wasn't too sure I liked my card because of the non-traditional color, but after a while, I decided I really do. I like the muted purple and the purple ribbon. The stamp I bought on clearance at Michael's after Christmas and finally was able to use it. And the paper is from Tim Holtz, I bought it last summer and forgot I had. (That was a nice surprise to find!)
I hope you find a little time to visit these fantastic blogs. Show them a little love.

Please let me know you were. Comments are always welcome!
Thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Black, Silver & White Challenge

We have a busy, busy weekend, but I was able to get in a little mental therapy tonight. I had so many ideas running through my mind today that I thought I was going to burst.
The fabulous Tammy at Crafting By Designs is hosting the Black, Silver and White Challenge. Hmmmm....I thought, great color combo, so many possibilities. Lately my creative joy has come out in creating invitations and announcements. Hoping someday to turn it into a small side business.
This is what I came up with:

 This would be perfect for so many occasions. A bridal shower, a sweet 16 party, even a girls night out. Here is a look at the inside:
And a little close up:
I was having so much creating this one, I decided to make 2 more in different colors:

 And the three of them together:
Come visit us at Crafting By Designs and play along. We offer a new challenge every Wednesday. Sometimes we even add an extra one in. You can never play with paper too much, right?

I love reading comments, please let me know you were here.
Thanks for stopping by!

Friday, March 1, 2013

These are a few of My (Granma's) Favorite Things

A few weeks ago I blogged about my Granpap Seebacher. Well today I am going to blog about my Granma Seebacher. Unfortunately I do not have a lot of memories, she passed away when I was 5. When I was 4, she became bed ridden. In the blog about Granpap, I told of the root cellar and how Granma would take me in there. On the shelves were tins, tins filled with goodies, tins filled with buttons (maybe that is where my button addiction comes from) and of course those jellied candies that were shaped like fruit slices.
Every Sunday was dinner at Granma and Granpap's. Dinner was served at noon. Usually Granma cooked chicken. Understandably so, my Granpap and his brother's had a poultry store on the South Side of Pittsburgh, "Seebacher's Poultry." My Granma would be in the kitchen cooking up a storm. Always in a dress and always with an apron on. I don't think I can ever remember seeing my Granma wearing a pair of pants. She wore dresses, all of the time. From what I can remember she was a fabulous cook and baker. She taught my mom how to bake apple pie. (And just let me tell ya, my mom's apple pie is the best apple pie on earth!) One thing my Granma used to bake was Apple Strudel, it was delicious! If any Seebacher family members are reading this and have the recipe or KNOW a family member that has the recipe, please ask them for it. I'm such a nostalgic person and family traditions are important to me. There are some who will never share a recipe, if they aren't shared, how can they be passed down through the family. Wouldn't it bring joy knowing that your Mom's recipe, that she got from her Mom is being passed down through the generations?
After my Granpap passed away, his children went in to clean out the house. My dad brought these things home. Kitchen items that were my Granma's. My mom gave them to me. Someday when my kitchen is finally remodeled, I will proudly hang them the bulkhead. The colander is probably the biggest colander I have ever seen. When cooking for 10 every day, you really do need big things. I'm not sure exactly what the tools are on the left and right side. I believe the one on the left has something to do with pastry dough and the one on the right - a noodle maker. Of course the 2nd from the left is a knife sharpener, then the hand held beaters. I have a set of the green glasses, but I don't use them. They are on the top shelf in my kitchen cabinet. I don't want to use them because I am afraid of them getting broke.
I remember going to Granma's and on occasion she would take me in the attic. The attic was full of wonder. At one time, it was the bedroom for my dad and his brother's. I can remember different things I would see. An old catcher's mask, a few ball gloves, old bed springs and pictures. (This is coming from a memory of a 3 or 4 year old) My sister and I got to spend the weekend with Granma and Granpap. We slept in the bedroom to the right of the stairs on the 3rd floor. I can remember the big double bed, whiter than white sheets and the pillow cases that were embroidered, (by my Granma.) Granma let us sleep with radio on. I can remember her tucking us in at night and waking us up in the morning. When she became bed ridden, her daughter's and daughter in-laws took turns during the week to help take care of her. Granma's hospital bed was set up in the living room on the 2nd floor. I can remember going in with my mom, sitting on the living room floor watching Captain Pitt on TV. Granma would hint around about how she would like her hair brushed and I would climb onto her bed and brush her hair. After I was done playing beauty shop, we would play Crazy 8's or War. One thing about being born into the Seebacher family, as soon as you could walk and talk, you were old enough to learn how to play cards. I think all of the grandkids knew how to play 31 by the time they were 5. Sometimes my mom would have to go the drug store to pick something up, Granma would give me money for a popsicle and up Good Lane we trekked. I would get to push the Walk button and we would wait. We'd cross in front of St. Theresa's old church, turn left and walk to Lincoln Pharmacy.
I've lost track at how many cousin's I have. I'm sure if I sat down I could write them all down. I know there are at least 24 or 25 Seebacher Grandkids. I've been told all of my life that out of all of the Grandkids, I am the only one the looks like my Granma Seebacher. My personality if like her's too. I've never seen photos of my Granma when she was younger, so for now I'll just take everyone's word. Maybe someday when I'm in my 60's, I'll look into the mirror and see my Granma's eyes looking back at me and I'll just smile.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Inside Out Cricut Die Cut Challenge

So it's Sunday, I am hosting Monday's challenge at Crafting By Designs. I had nothing! I mean nothing. I sat at my desk in my messy scrappy corner, glanced through a couple of magazines for inspiration...nothing. Heard by hubby coming down the stairs with a smile on his face and a margarita in hand. He thought that I might need one.... After a few sips I knew what I wanted to create. I haven't made a pop up card in such a long time and the word "bunch" kept coming to mind. I looked through my Cricut Cartridges and chose Walk In My Garden. So springy, so I was watching the snowflakes gently fall outside.
I apologize for my photos, not the best quality. I was in a hurry so I could get my posts up and ready to go.

I left the inside blank, to personalize with a handwritten note. In today's modern society, handwritten notes are going my the wayside...texts and emails. Who wouldn't like to receive a special note card in the mail only to have a special surprise when they open the card? 
My countdown to spring will start in March. I'm ready to hear birds chirping in the morning and seeing everything bloom again.
Don't forget to say hi and thanks for stopping by. Hop on over to Crafting By Designs and play along with our fantastic challenges.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

My Circle of Friends

Three very special women, three very special friends. All of them entering my life at different phases. Lisa, my bff since were like 7 years old have crossed the friendship line, she is my sister by choice. We went from playing barbies, to high school antics, to marriage and children. Lisa once told me that through every stage of your life, you have a friend, very few are fortunate enough to have the same one. Kathy came into my life through a mutual friend, late teens, early twenties. Trying to find our way into the world and where we fit in. There were a few years where we had no contact and to be honest, I'm not even sure how we got back together, but we did and it was if no time had passed at all. Then there is Miss Lisbeth (Elisabeth). Our boys went to preschool together, idle chit chat between mom's waiting to pick up their kids. The time came for Cub Scouts and I was (un)lucky enough to be volunteered into being a Den Leader. I had 2 Tiger Cubs, Danny and Gavin. Elisabeth was at every meeting, every outing and we found ourselves doing more with the boys and while the boys were in school, we found ourselves getting together. Elisabeth is 12 years younger me. She keeps me young.
I have found my circle. They are my strength, my voice of  reason, my laughter and everything else in between. I am truly blessed to have these ladies in my life.

Thanks for stopping by.
Come visit me and the other fabulous designers at Crafting By Designs.