hello monday.

hello holidays.

hello blog. i've missed you. let's get together more often.

hello oversleeping and hitting the snooze one to many times.

hello monday. (why'd you have to oversleep?)

hello to a calendar of conference calls which at one point today, had me quadruple booked. (i made it to 3 of those 4 calls. yay me.)

hello excitement. my momma shows up on tuesday from new york.

hello hair appointment right after work. (forcing in me time is important!)

hello dance rehearsal again for the showcase this weekend.

hello last minute cleaning to be done.

hello holidays... i'm ready....

(hello monday is a lisa leonard inspired blog prompt, join me!)


Fall Adventures

we decided to adventure off on saturday to a pumpkin farm. one thing different, among many, on the west coast, the pumpkin patch just doesn't exist on every street corner as it does in the northeast. the closest one was about 30 minutes north of us at the DD Ranch in Terrebonne. wow! this place was something else! little did we know it was like an amusement park and would have cost us nearly $100 to really enjoy everything they had to offer!

there was a petting zoo...

pumpkin chunkin, face painting, a corn maze, a band playing, all sorts of different activities going on - and everything cost one token - one token = $2.50 = OUTRAGEOUS!!! so yeah. we checked out some animals... took some obligatory pumpkin photos...

now, my dear readers, you see this adorable face? this angelic lil being? yes. my child, just moments after this photo was taken? she melted down. things were said such as, "did we come here just to pet some stinkin lil goats? i wanted a stinkin pumpkin!!!!" we retorted back with, "GET IN THE CAR. NOW!!!" OH ...it was awful. no pumpkins were had. (besides, the prices were outrageous!)

we ventured on over to smith rock. i'd been wanting to see it, and it is breathtaking...

we then ventured on to see an old railroad and did a lil more hiking...and got some awesome and some silly family pics. much love for fall adventures. happy fall y'all. what's everyone else up to?


First Grade

Dear Kennedy,

The last month and a half has been full of getting into a routine and learning (for all of us) how to be a first grader. You are fitting in quite well, I must say. You were so excited to start school, telling me on the first day, you didn't need a hand held at all, because you were a big girl. I die a little bit inside each time I hear this. My apron strings are loosening, and I'm sad, but at the same time, I grow with such a sense of pride, that I've sent you out into this world to be such a strong, independent little person. a pretty great contributor to society.

You struggled in the first few days with schedules and getting ready in the morning. While I knew immediately this was not like you, I knew to look deeper. I brought out of you in casual conversations, you were overwhelmed. You were having a hard time "fitting in". You went from 1/2 kindergarten and no recess, to a 7 hour day, with recesses and lunch. This transition is HUGE! So we coached you on making friends, fitting in, and being a part of a group. Learning that you were the little girl sitting alone on the playground eating lunch by herself? Broke my heart and made me want to homeschool you forever. I worked with your teacher closely and we quickly got you past that small bump in the road. You now have two BFFs - Ellie and Ava. Miss Gleeson says you are the finest threesome in the class... remarkable little girls, she said!

Your teacher - wow... have we gotten lucky two years in a row! Miss Gleeson is a DOLL! She is young and ambitious and eager to teach. She has recognized you are hungry for knowledge and she is willing to send you additional homework to keep you motivated with your advanced reading skills. This is all very exciting for us. I have already started helping out with projects in the classroom and have volunteered to be Miss Gleeson's room parent! We are loving Ponderosa!

We had your first parent-teacher conference last night. WOW! Once again - you floored us with your skills. You are way above the curve in reading and getting far above the curve in Math. Miss Gleeson has already started you on the 2nd grade sight words list. (I didn't have the heart to tell her just yet, I think you know those already too!) You passed each competancy test from the state with 100 and we are just so amazed at what you are capable of.

Your homework so far is to just read every night for 20 minutes. This is never enough for you. we read 4-6 books a night. I am at the library once a week now loading up on books, in addition to the 2 you bring home from school each week. You set yourself a personal goal in October to read 100 books by the end of the month. By the 10th, you had read 30... I think you can do it! I love that you share this passion of mine to read!

You also LOVE and adore your music teacher, Miss Sue. We are so thankful you get music twice a week in addition to Music and Movement on Wednesdays. These days are highlights of your week. Your voice is really being cultivated!

Keep up your passion for school, sweet girl. There is more fun around every corner.

and THIS is what 1st grade looks like on you!!!


what i've been workin on...

so, since i've moved to bend, i've been inspired. could be the thin air. could be that i'm feeling better. could simply be that there is literally art and inspiration on every street corner. i'm not quite sure. whatever it is? i'm not complaining in the least. i'm inspired. and i'm loving it. and i want to make stuff. every day. here's some things i've made recently - right before we headed west, and then even more recent, since we've moved! What are you working on right now and what is inspiring you as you head back to school?

I know I'm inspired to make goodies for Kennedy's new teacher. This banner below was made last fall for her Kindergarten teacher... i think i might whip up another one this year. what do you think?

Back To School Banner - October Afternoon

My girl is forever stealing strawberries from the counter as I cut them up... so we've coined this the Strawberry Goblin... I had to do a page about this. I caught her in action over the summer!

Strawberry Goblin - October Afternoon
 Just whipped this lil number up at a crop last weekend.. using some Crate Paper from my stash and a cute candid photo of Kennedy on the morning of her 6th birthday. She was saucy that day! Love this look !!!
You Are My Sunshine - Crate Paper
 Also made last weekend... photos from a couple of summers ago. She looked so very serious here... so I called this Sand Warrior. Used all Echo Park. I love Echo Park so much I want to marry them. I don't think I have ever felt so connected to a paper line before. Everything they make, they think of me. It's all about ShelleyMay when they design their lines. They have me in mind, I am convinced. I need to design for them. I must. I love their papers. The weight. The designs. The embellishments. It's just totally me. I can eat up a collection easily. Pure love.
Sand Warrior - Echo Park
 My niece, Caitlyn, is going into 3rd grade. She needed a clipboard, comp book, and pencil box this year. She couldn't go in with standard supplies. ohhhh no no no way! nope. she got boutique style supplies! Customized... that's right!  She was smiles ear to ear when she saw this stuff! I told her to tell her teachers I do custom orders! lolol Again - Echo Park! swoon!
Cait's School Set - Echo Park

So - I showed you mind.. now show me yours! what have you been workin on?

peace and be good!



blowing the dust off. it's simple.

yes. i know. i said i write. i'd send postcards. i'd call you from the road. the truth is. it's not you. it's me. i went off and found a life. i've been busy. really, it's not you.. no no no. stop it. just listen. it's me. i've found someone new. someone who does more for me. someone who gives me what i need. someone who understands me. someone who... who... someone who completes me.

i moved across the country in order to do it. and yup. lo and behold. i found me. i found a life. it was there all along. waiting underneath blue skies and zero humidity and big puffy, white, angelic clouds. bend, oregon. we're here, we're settled, and we're making a life. it's been a whirlwind. we love it. and we are setting roots so deep it takes my breath away some days. i catch my self some days with butterflies in my stomach like the first time i went on a date as a child. now that we are getting closer to school starting, we are fitting in more structure starting this week. we've let it go. and it was good. but now it's time to rope it back in and get back to schedules and structure and calm. my girl needs it. i need it. poppa needs it.

in all my blog surfing that i do, one woman i admire the most, that i very rarely comment on her blog (sorry lee , i'm a horrible lurker, i know!) posted last week, a challenge, i just loved, so i wanted to emulate and take inspiration from her. i felt this idea, which she found from elsie last summer, was just what i needed to jump start me into the school year and kick off fall. i need a little push back into organization. thanks, lee!! you're a superhero momma, in my book. i'm so sad our stars did not align when we were in the same time zone, and just hours drive apart, but should i ever get to toronto on business again, we will for sure hook up. so follow me along on 4 simple things...my own simple and doable challenge:

FINISH: there are just a few more boxes that need to be unpacked. just unpack them already. and put things away where they belong. there are a few piles in the storage closet in the kitchen and in my bedroom that need a home. just put them away already. there are plenty of empty closets and cupboards in this home. that's a first. plus, my mother in law will be here in a few weeks, i want her to see what a beautiful home this is...

RESTART: stealing this one from lee. restart my healthy eating and nutrition guidelines. i was doing so very well. i've lost a solid 40 pounds since january. 40 pounds. that's huge. HUGE! no pun intended. no reason i cannot keep that momentum going. i need to refocus and really look at not just for me, but for the family as a whole, what are we putting into our bodies?

CREATE: create more regularly. this one is already in action. oregon has jumpstarted my creativity. art is all around. it is everywhere. i have made several things since i have been here. i have ventured out and made some new friends, even. i am so excited about what is in my future here in bend.

EXPLORE: living in a new town, it's important to explore. i often times drive around and purposely try to get myself lost, simply to see if i can find my way home. i haven't gotten lost yet. this is a good sign i'm grounded and right where i need to be. i am in awe of the beauty of my town. there is literally art on every street corner. i am astounded by this every day. it simply takes my breath away. i need to get out more with my camera and explore and document this so i can share it with my out of town friends.

Add caption

what are your simple and doable things for august? will you share them with me?


the big yellow truck is here...

and it's glowing in the driveway. she pulled in yesterday at about 10:00 am. the husband went and picked it up. we shelled out about 1900 bucks. and began to cram all of our life into the big yellow penske box. i chuckle, because that name.. penske, has been a large part of my work fabric for about the last 12 months. not the moving company, but a different division. i chuckle just the same. anyhow, i digress. the moving has officially begun. as of right now, i write to you from about the only piece of furniture left in the house. my desk. my sweet, handcrafted, scrapping, art table, of a desk my husband so sweet handcrafted for my about 6 years ago. i told all the friends here yesterday helping... whatever you do - don't pack up the desk! this momma has two more days of work left!!!

our life. in a truck. crammed into a big yellow box. it's really quite hard to believe you can condense every memory. every tear. every laugh. every hug. every sweet thing you've ever made with your child into a big. yellow. box. on wheels. that i'm told will only go 70 miles an hour. "when i'm not in a mountainous range." i chuckle. all in that box. and now we are faced with... will it all fit? we still have to cram in the sofas, the beds, the desk, the swingset, the bookcases, the kitchen table, the coffee table... and i think that's it. and there's a fear it won't fit. we sold a 4 wheeler yesterday in under 3 hours on craig's list for fear it wouldn't fit. (forget it was a piece of shit and hardly ran anyhow... it got sold!) yee haw! and this money will be used to pay off momma's 4 wheeler! I say good thinkin lincoln!

this adventure is rockin! we are on the move. and everything is pushing us there with no resistance whatsoever. we are going willfully and with excitement so much so that we cannot sleep. my husband has lost the look of tire and stress around his eyes. he has a look of happy in his face again. that same look i remembered when we got married. funny - i had actually forgotten he once looked that way - until it showed itself again. that was such a sweet memory. having him home this week, too, has been awesome, as this is what i get. every day. from here on out. i get to have him. everyday. here. with us. he will be working from home too. our quality of life is good. pure goodness. just us. the three of us. together. no stress. just us. ding what we love and being where we love. exploring and creating a new life together. i'm liking the way this looks so far. and we're not even there yet.

we're just in the big yellow box and already the sun is shining in my driveway. and life is good.

peace and be good people.


pizza is your karma.

(written on 06.04.11, 38,000 miles in the sky, on my way to oregon)

It all began a Saturday afternoon. We were attempting to prepare for our move to Oregon. Our first weekend of productivity. We had boxes. We had motivation. We had teamwork. We took a break. Dad and kennedy were playing some kinect. I was taking a snooze on the couch. All I knew, was I was awakened to the cry. You know the cry. The one where you mothering instincts go into overdrive. You leap up, you begin gathering things, because you know it’s going to be a long afternoon in the ER. You grab snacks. Her lovey. Comfortable clothes. And you know something is broken. She was celebrating a victory in boxing with dad, fell just right while jumping up and down and landed just right and broke her wrist. Again.

We spent a better part of the afternoon in the ER. We witnessed homeless people. Drug addicts. People who simply needed attention. People who needed to be loved. People who needed to be needed. we were triaged and never actually taken back into a room. We were cared for by an awesome team of doctors and nurses the whole time, but we got to see all the action in the main area of the ER. My husband was amazed. You see, in all the times we’ve been in the hospital with me, it’s been pretty bad so we’ve been sequestered into a private room we never witnessed the travesty of the public lives you hear about on the news. The girl that comes in with a drug addiction so bad she’s succumbed to begging for prescription drugs by faking an ankle injury. Yup, we saw it. We were in awe. Kennedy was a trooper through the whole experience. My husbands eyes were wide opened that day.

At one point as we were about to get casted he hands me the phone and tells me to go and order these people some dinner. I laughed and walked away. He says, no really. we have to DO something. He goes on to tell me he can’t believe all he is witnessing… he is appalled at society and all that has walked through the doors. The least we can do is brighten the days of these doctors and buy them some dinner. This coming from a man who never feels we owe anything to anyone. I ask him if he is serious he tells me YES! Pay it forward. This is our karma. This is our chance. Go order dinner for these people. They work tirelessly. Endlessly. Caring for people who will never pay their bills who will never thank them. Do it.

And so I did. We ordered three pizzas and some salads for the ER staff that night at community general. My heart soared that evening. Not because of the idea… oh look at me. Look what I can do. But because… look at us. Look at the couple that we’ve become. We can finally do good. We can pay it forward. We are doing one small kind gesture. And who gives a shit if it ever comes back to us. It doesn’t even matter. It just plain felt good. We walked in God’s grace for a moment. And when the doc told us we were all set to go we told her we could not leave yet, we had to sign for her dinner.. she didn’t believe us. I told her it was the least we could do. The look in her eye told me that very moment something had shifted in or life. I knew tat moment of paying it forward was huge.

I’ve always believed in small gestures of kindness for strangers. And I’ve always done them. My husband always thought I was crazy. “why do you do so much for others.” “no one ever does anything for you, etc”…. and I tell him, because one day, my karma is gonna kick me in the ass, lift me up, spin me around and take me on one hell of a ride, and I am quite surprised, as I’m in the midst of the ride right now, 38,000 miles up in the air, writing this from an airplane.

As we planned this cross country move to Oregon, of course, there was some fear. It’s a huge financial burden. It’s scary. There is a great load of planning that goes into this, especially when you are the mover, the packer, everything. We opted to do this all ourselves. We had to find our own house, truck to move, everything. Form the moment we made the decision to move, every single step to get us closer has fallen into place like a well choreographed ballet. In the almost 12 years we have been together, nothing, and I mean nothing has ever gone this well. This tells me, in my serendipitous belief – we are meant to be in Oregon. Everything is pointing us there.

We began looking for a house months in advance. Our target move date was late june. We found a house May 1st. someone was already in line to rent it. Their app fell through. The house was perfect for us. We got approved. With no problems. It’s in my sister-in-law’s neighborhood. Karma. there was then a worry over how we would sign a lease as the rental company required us to be there in person. My job required I travel to Oregon the first week of june on business. Karma? Serendipity? Perfect.

The house is 75% packed 4 weeks before the move date. We are organized. We are ready. Ron has a job. Karma. He will work from home. We will both work east coast hours. Karma. Our quality of life just climbed up through the roof. Karma. Our current landlord told us to keep our last months rent rather than him send us our security as he knew it would be helpful with a cross country move. Karma. We didn’t even ask. He said “because you’re good people”. Karma.

All I know. I am on cloud nine. Literally right now. Writing from the clouds on my plane from Chicago to Portland where I will connect to Redmond. The center seat is empty. Karma. The flight is smooth. The view looks like heaven, if heaven is clear skies, with big puffy clouds, and snow covered mountain tops… it’s just gorgeous up here. Life is good. I’m on top of the world. And this roller coaster ride that karma is taking me on is one serendipitous turn after another and I’m loving it. Stay tuned while I chronicle the adventures of our cross country move and our new life in bend. daddy leaves on the 22nd, K and I leave on the 25th. Can’t. hardly.wait.

Peace and be good.


and then she was six.

i wish i could wrap her up in a bubble and preserve this day and these moments forever. i'm convinced they are so sweet and will never come again so pure and innocent. she will continue to get older and learn more things from her friends. the sweetness from this child today was breathtaking. the way the light caught her hair at breakfast, to the way the wind blew her hair in the car, as we had deep conversations tooling around town this morning before school. today was, in a word. perfect.

i want to capture this moment in words. simply so i don't forget. (as i tend to do these days.) our day started at about 6:00am. i felt someone standing over me. i peeking open my eyes, and saw her looking at me, then looking at some hello kitty figurines in her hands, then looking at me... in total disbelief. then, she exclaimed, "there is glitter all over my hands and in between my fingers!!! fairies must have come!" i asked if i could take a look. sure enough - she was covered in pixie dust. i told her to check her bed. she said there was glitter EVERYWHERE. you see, she has a fairy door in her room. fairies must have come whilst she was sleeping and left her a small toy and sprinkled her with good fortune, sweetness and pixie dust.

i then explained to her that i just ran out of time this week, and didn't have time to get balloons or anything special for breakfast, but that i would make it up to her while she was at school for dinner. all the while fooling her, as i had gone all out and decorated the kitchen, complete with tea cup and saucer for juice and donut, balloons! the works! she was floored!!! we had breakfast, got ready and left the house.

headed to the nail salon for manis and pedis! every birthday girls needs a fresh mani and pedi to kick off the day! on the way there, i reminded her how special she was to me. i explained that this day was one i wait for all year, every year, as this day is the day my life changed. i told her that having her made me a better person. made me stop and slow down. she told me "mom, today, my life changed. today, i'm no longer a little girl. i can feel it now. like really feel it. like, i know i'm bigger now. like, i don't even WANT to have temper tantrums anymore. really, i don't!" i just wan to squeeze this kid. she's perfect.

then a trip to Mc Ds for lunch, then off to school. i delivered cupcakes and drinks to school for her to share with her friends. she got a huge lot of cards from all of her friends. several of the boys even wrote i love you on the cards! wow!!! wasn't ready for all of that! she got home from school, we took a quick trip to the canal to see loads and loads of baby turtles (need to go back to take pics!) and then grabbed daddy and headed to dinner.  we finished off the day with dinner at spaghetti warehouse and then back home for birthday cake and early to bed.

as with every year, this day was filled with many memories for me. i just can't fathom how we got here. how did i create this little person. this human being that is so full of empathy and respect. consideration and thoughtfulness. kindness and heart. creativity and mindfulness. she's just an amazing and brilliant kid. she's wise beyond her years. i'm convinced she's got a bit of my grams in her, which is why she's so wise. i've said since she was a baby, you can look into her eyes, and see a very old soul. she's so very mature and logical for six. she reads, she draws, she writes. i never want to forget this feeling

at six kennedy:

  • is an amazing artist
  • is gorgeous with mesmerizing eyes that tell a story all their own
  • is a story teller
  • can read as well as an 8 year old
  • can spell as well as an 8 year old
  • is creative
  • is kind
  • is warm and caring
  • is thoughtful and mindful
  • is considerate and empathetic
  • is funny and downright hilarious when she needs to be
  • is snuggable and huggable
  • is determined and stubborn for all the right reasons
  • is brilliant and gifted
  • is driven
  • is focused
  • and in the end, she is mine
six years has been a wild and exciting ride.

can't wait to see what the next 6 bring us.


Life changes so quickly...

so, we have some very close friends in southern california, the lubowe's. carly lubowe is the youngest. she has a very best friend who's life just changed in the blink of an eye. from jessica's website:

On March 3rd an MRI found an inoperable tumor in my brain. After many appointments, research and prayer my parents and I have chosen to receive radiation/chemo treatment at Children’s Hospital Orange County (CHOC). I start treatment on March 21st. Please continue to pray for me and my family.

i believe this little girl, jessica joy rees is about 12 years old. i am compelled to do something for this sweet girl, to help spread joy back at her. in reading her story, she's a remarkable little girl. she is walking in God's light, living his word, and doing his work at such a young age. it really makes you step back and imagine your own adult life, if you were so open and engaged in doing the same. she underwent her first "lap" of treatment today. please join me in keeping her and your family in your prayers. jessica firmly believes in NEGU.. never ever give up. amazing, eh? (only from the mouths of babes.)

i encourage you to check out her website, and then like her cause on facebook. her goal is to have 10,000 likes. come on people.. we can DO this! she's also starting a website called joy jars. i believe the goal here is to send jars filled with lil bits of goodness to others who are ill... um hullo crafty women.. doesn't this just get your wheels turning?

i'm planning to put together a jar for Jessica this weekend. if anyone would like to contribute somehow, and send some crafty goodness her way that will fill her with joy and smiles, please let me know.

now... GO. like her cause on FB. check out her website. mark it as a fav. i'm sure you'll be inspired by her daily. i know i am already.

peace and be good.


cheap, scrappy, & upcycled?

so, in an effort today to be crafty - since i was finally feeling somewhat human - and in honor of my doing less = more... i took some scraps, some steals from target, and some time cozied up in bed, to BE crafty. less is more, right? i changed the bed and cleaned our room. i knew i didn't want to craft in the office, since it looks like a bomb has gone off in there. i pulled the following things together, having no idea what i was about to do:
  • random flowers gifted to me by my sweet friend, Cari Fennell
  • scraps of fabric
  • some beanies for kennedy, i found on sale at Target for 70 cents
  • some cute spring shoes i bought end of spring season last year for 3 bucks
  • a gigantic bottle of fabric tac (a staple in my world!)
  • some fiskars shears
  • a seam ripper
  • some needles
  • some thread
  • and random bucket of ephemera
the results? 4 new hats! UPCYCLING! and a new pair of shoes!!! woot woot! go me!

what did you make today??

peace and be good.



fewer vs. more

so in my drugged up, migrained, percocet induced haze the last several days, i've been surfing many blogs. ok - hundreds. alright! perhaps 1000's. i think the blog addiction goes hand in hand with the magazine addiction. little snippets. i don't have to read chapters to get a fix. just a lil' daily what's up, going on, teach me something new - yeah, and i'm happy. i get inspired. i want to create. i want to write more. i want to hone in on what makes me happy. i want more. i need more.

i've been a long time follow of many bloggers that have reached "celeb status" in the scrapbooking & crafting industry. i've then deleted many off my favs when they've become arrogant, pompous, and full of themselves, and just plain mean. there is an insidious underbelly to this crafting industry that reared it's ugly head to me this summer. i mean, really? it's paper and glue, women. get over yourselves.

there are many i've followed since they first started a blog and are now starting their own photography business. (you know who you are.) inspired. these kinds of bloggers keep me coming back for more. they move me. they make me want to be a better me. they inspire me to learn something new. they take chances. how can you not want more when witnessing that?

and then, in a quest to want more of me - a more stylish, a more creative, a more defined me - physically - i'm drawn to various style blogs. i'm not quite sure how to define these... you know the ones - cute outfits each day - on the cheap?  now let me not confuse you - i've no interest in DOING this myself, but it's inspired me to try a new top now and then. experiment with layers. express myself in my style. i used to love this. i allowed motherhood to take this from me. i'm slowly getting it back. some six years later.

all of this reading and inspiration left me wanting more. (that one little word rearing it's head at me again - hair raised - looking me right in the face) i want to write more, photograph more, make more, style more, lots more. and i tend to stop. and spin in circles. and stop. and get dizzy. and stop. because i don't know where to start. and then tonight, my most favorite blogger ever tweeted this blog - and it resonated so deeply, i had to write. more. she said after attending a blogging conference, she learned simply to:

Do Fewer Things.
Do Them Better.

those two simple phrases, once embraced, will allow me to do so. much. more.

i'm off to make my list of fewer things. so i can do them better. and get so much more out of me.

join me?

peace and be good.


the CSN $20 Gift Certificate goes to.... dun dun dun duuuuuuhhhhh.....

i added a slip of paper for each entry and had my lovely assistant vanna - er - umm.... i mean kennedy pull a slip for me (and i neglected to photograph this fabulous event, because, well, i wasn't feeling well and, then kennedy didn't want to cooperate, oh yeah, you want to know who won??? right. i'm on it. sorry. migraine has me a bit loopy. so...)

... and it was....


i will email you the specifics for CSN... and you must post back and let me know what you got and what you think!!!

thanks, everyone, for playing along! I will be working with CSN again in the future, so stay tuned!

peace and be good!



go on girl. git your SHINE on...

so in a typical bloggers world, a sweet girl by the name of ashley sent me an email one day. she randomly found MY blog, complimented my writing and told me i was an inspiration... what the WHAT? ashley - you rock.

i then wandered over to her blog - holy cow! the girl is absolutely adorable. she's doing some pretty awesome things. and of course, i wanted needed to have one of her necklaces. not only did i buy one, nope, i bought two! and speedy mcspeederson... i got my order in under like 3 days i think? she's awesome.

now, in my sickly state, reading blogs makes me happy... i venture to her blog, and what? woah. stop.. it's give-a-way time on her blog! some over the top cute stuff too. go get you a look. i did. and i'm gonna win. (sticks out tongue) but take a look anyhow!

great, and now ashley has me hooked on MORE blogs... just.lovely.things. oh go get inspired, would ya?

peace and be good.


CSN Giveaway...

i have the info from CSN to giveaway my $20 gift certificate!!! comments on original giveaway post below will be left open until 12:01am Wednesday. That means I will announce a winner tomorrow!!!! will it be YOU???

thanks for following.. peace and be good.



how do YOU get inspired...

when you just can't feel it? i need to be inspired. i will be inspired. if i say it so shall it be? right? HAH! i'm hoping i can shake what ails me as my scrappy chics want to get together friday night for some craftin and drinkin time! i'm all about both! so i'm trying my brain for some inspiration. i want to make something wonderful. just don't know what. what sort of steps do you take to find inspiration?

i start with my own stuff first... kinda like this:
  • i start with a list of stuff i want to make: layouts, altered, cards, fabric or paper, gifts or to keep
  • i then go looking through my old stuff: what is it that i loved about my favs? was it the product? the style? the technique?
  • shop my stash: what do i have that i'm dying to use? what am i out of consumable wise? what do i need/want/must have? (waiting for Cassie's PI order to get here! she's so RAD!)
then i go out to other people's stuff:
  • i blog hop and find inspiration >> just look at the blogs i have listed!!
  • i surf etsy
  • i look through friend's galleries on FB
  • i look at my fav manufacturers blogs and design team galleries
then, i make another list of what to pack! phew. so far i've just got a mental list and i've been looking at some of my fav work tonight and came across some oldies but goodies... hope this helps you find inspiration too... and i leave you with some eye candy - and heck, maybe some inspiration! (let me know if that worked!!!)

love this photo. circa last summer.

peace and be good. now go forth and make stuff. and post back here if i inspired you.



update on give-away!!!

so, my friends at CSN have not yet sent me the gift card code... i am extending the giveaway to the post below through wednesday!!!

this is my first time working with them, so i apologize. and am embarrassed.

stay tuned and bare with me.

peace and be good.



the office...

and no, i'm not referring to the show. i'm referring to my office. the place where i work. the place where i create. my home office. you see, i'm fortunate. i work for an amazing fortune 500 company. top rated by employees. i'm spoiled. i work from home. full time. on occasion i get to travel, but it's always fun - even though it's work. it's fast paced, it's a high stress level, but it's nothing i can't handle. ever. i have wonderful peers. even better mentors. i'm spoiled. period.

the move to oregon is upon us. the hubby, sweet hubby - stated the first focus on the new house will be my office. his exact words? "honey - we will get your office dialed in perfect for you this time in bend." see, i've always had a dedicated space, but it's been modge-podged together and never really complete. because not only do i work from home full time, those that know me - know - i'm a crafter. so it's my studio - also. it needs to be creative. it needs to be me. it needs to be "dialed in."

so lately, i'm on the hunt online for inspiration. my main goal is for OFFICE FURNITURE that is reasonably priced, yet will last a good long while. i've been perusing blogs, diy mags and this new to me online store - CSN Stores.  i mean, look at this herman miller chair in lime green? i'd LOVE this.

this chair looks super comfy cozy for 9 hour work days!

they have LOADS of choices, prices are right - and i've done my research people. their customer service is top notch! CSN has a great selection of office furniture, home furnishings, decor, kitschy stuff you name it! check out the site. i dare you. give yourself a few hours, as you'll be sucked in.

take a look on their site. let me know what you think. have you purchased from CSN stores? what was your experience? if you haven't, would you? report back and let me know so i can contribute to another purchase with a GIFT CERTIFICATE!!!! that's right - my friends at CSN Stores have given me a $20 Gift Certification to give away to one lucky reader! but you know nothing comes for free... that's right. i'm gonna make you work it a bit! follow me here on my blog for one entry. leave me a comment here for another. share my blog with your friends on facebook and let me know back here you did that too! each step will earn you an entry into the drawing!

i will have my assistant, Kennedy - help me draw a winner Sunday evening. no comments after 5:00pm Sunday evening will be considered. i will announce the winner on my blog Monday morning!

now go! tell your friends!

peace and be good!


a healthier way...

well, most of you that follow my blog know - i'm on a quest for a healthier life. i am eating better, taking vitamins, and working like the dickens to get my never-ending health issues in order. in an effort to do so, i've been shopping more wisely. noticing that a full grocery cart, does not necessarily mean i have everything i need. i've noticed when i DO have everything i need, my cart is LESS full. oh but not so! visually, it is less full. nutrient wise? it's full to the brim.

i have learned that when i stay away from processed foods, and work to put in more whole foods to our bodies, the cart is visually less full. there are no boxes. no freezer bags. (unless it's a frozen fruit or vegetable) this hit me one evening at the checkout. i commented on this new found a-ha moment, and the cashier looked at me like i had three heads. after all, she was under 18, a size 2, and cute as a button, with gorgeous skin, hair, and an athletic build. she thought about it for a minute and said, "yeah, i grew up on these kinds of foods. my mom never allowed us to have cereal unless it had rolled oats or flax." i then took a turn, looked at her like SHE had three heads.. and then - i wanted to find her momma, pick her up, spin her around, worship her, and then have her teach me how to feed my family.

less really IS more. are you with me? ok you are, but are you listening? there is a belief that in order to eat healthy, it also costs more. this is not true. since i have stopped buying so much convenient and processed crap, my bill is about $60 less a week. this is $60 less weekly for over a month now! we are eating better as a family and trying new things. do you KNOW what those processed foods can do to you? i'm not going to tell you, you can google it. and then be grossed out.

so in an effort to keep this up, i am frequenting my local health food store, Green Planet Grocery. this place ROCKS. as much as they can, they stock the shelves with food from local sources. local as in right here in syracuse! umm, hello? how cool is that? not to mention, the people that work there? awesome! so healthy! i don't get "the look" when i walk in. you know, like the one i get when i walk into victoria's secret. the "umm, yeah, heffer? we don't SERVE your size in here!" look. yeah. not at all! i walk into Green Planet, i get the "damn. check out this cool chick! she brought her cute recyclable bags AND she wants to get her body healthy. way to go cute chick!" look. love them. everyone i've ever dealt with is knowledgeable, helpful, and eager to help you or offer you new choices. love this. the store is bright, airy, totally does not fit in syracuse... but it's just my kind of place.

so, not only is the service the schiznit, they offer up all these yummy, often vegan, organic snackems all over the store. whilst there a couple of weeks ago, i happen upon some samples at the register and then a super cute display of cookie mix. i'm thinkin, yeah, no chance a vegan cookie can taste good. nope. i ain't buyin it. (afterall - vegan i am not. healthy, i am) so i look at the bag, as i'm tempted because A) the packaging was super cute. (cute girl, remember?) and 2) it claimed to be unprocessed anything! score! i had to try them, right? well, of course. the non-judgemental cashier told me i did. she then told me if i substituted the butter for coconut oil - score! total vegan recipe! i had coconut oil - why not, eh? then i read on the packaging: "save bag to freeze left over cookies!" bonus - again - CUTE packaging!

i fell for it. i bought them. OHip girls... you friggin ROCK! Maria and Angela of Organically Hip are two friends who had an idea. and they went for it! not only am i inspired to stay healthy knowing i can nurture my sweet tooth, but heck - these chicks are ambitious. the funny part - i made the cookies...Cowgirl Cookie Mix...and yeah, didn't need the bag to freeze leftovers. my family ate them up. i told no one of my secret until after the cookies were all gone.

i was so excited, i emailed Maria and Angela to ask if I could blog about them - they said SURE! as long as you send us a link! (and they like my blog!) so i did, and girls, link is on it's way.

are you with me? are you following along? are you smelling what i'm steppin in? pickin up what i'm layin down? i'm on a mission. we are not only watching what we are putting in our bodies, we are watching WHERE we are putting our bodies. join me as i continue to write about our cross country adventure coming up this summer. we are in heavy, heavy planning mode in the may household for our cross country move to a healthier lifestyle all the way around. the moving truck is reserved, notice has been given at work for the hubs, and i've got vacation approved for two weeks and new work hours figured out. stick with me. it'll be an adventure. and i'll make sure to make fun of it while we do it.

peace and be good. and go forth and get you some OHip cookies & brownies, yo!


and we're back.

damn, one day at typepad, and i'm frustrated. i think i spend my days doing techy stuff, i'm just fried when it comes time to blog. i will stick around blogger. plus, it's free y'all!

sorry for any confusion!!!!


i've moved...

my blog here. please save and follow me. and enjoy the sarcasm at my new home on the web. better blog design to come in the near future. i promise.



a bend in the road.

i have visions of a healthy life. when i close my eyes, and breath it in, i am thinner. my skin looks better. my eyes look rested. they sparkle again. my joints no longer hurt. my muscles no longer swell. it no longer hurts to stand up. my hair is fuller. and longer. my hair is wavy and kissed by the sun. i have new freckles across my nose. my clothing is more comfortable. i can feel the comfort of long, loose, flowy skirts. skirts i've fashioned with my own two hands using fabric in my stash. up cycled skirts. i can feel the simplicity of a plain tank top, simply embellished by my own hands. a handmade hair clip tying up loose strands in a mess bun. a new pair of sunglasses. flip flops. sandals. and the one thing that completes it all? a smile and sense of inner calm.

when i close my eyes, and think of bend. this is what i see. i can see it so clearly, i can almost feel it. like a tactile page in my art journal. i truly believe the life i've always imagined, the live i've always wanted, really is within reach. it's within reach simply for the taking. it is no secret now, we are relocating to bend, oregon in the summer. this is a decision two years in the making. this is a place i can feel myself putting down roots. this is where my daughter will grow up. this is where she will thrive. this is where she will grow. and the best part? it's where i will do the same things right beside her.

there are so many beautiful things about bend, that i can't imagine it not rubbing off on me. don't get me wrong, i'm the last person with a body image issue - i truly think i'm a beautiful person. bend will just make it stand out that much more.

i was recently diagnosed with fibro-myalgia. health is on the mind these days and ways to improve it. we've changed the kind of food that comes into the house. and we are conscious of portions and how we cook. i am back to taking my herbalife vitamins and using the shakes to help me lose weight. that is the key treatment to fibro. i know once the weight comes off, the bones and muscles will feel loads better. bend will not allow us to lead sedentary lifestyles. it's impossible there. i mean look at it....

my mother in law always tells me i have to make happen what i want to happen. i'm doing just that. care to follow the journey with me here? i'm heading down a slight bend in the road... and those skirts are looking fabulous.

stay tuned.

peace and be good.



an attempted fresh start 1.1.11

so - i set my alarm clock last night, when i laid down at 1130pm, to get up today at 700am. my plan? kick old habits and not sleep in on the weekend. i wanted to get up, throw on the saturday uniform of a sweatshirt, ball cap, jeans, and my uggs, and head to the grocery store and get that out of the way. it SO did not happen.

i woke with more new pain, coursing through my body, in areas i didn't think i could have pain. i ignored it. i headed downstairs to commotion. the tree was coming down. it was only 830 in the morning, and my tree was being torn apart. there was shit everywhere. and normally, i'd have freaked out. instead? i said thank you and what would you like me to do? the trees were taken down in a matter of an hour, everything neatly put away, boxed up and organized, ready for next year. :sigh:

i then wrote a two page list of things i need to accomplish before wednesday. i took monday and tuesday off to clean, and i wanted to start today, finish tomorrow, so i can sit in my studio and create all day monday and tuesday. i made the list. this was all i accomplished today. the pain got worse, so i said screw it. in honor of my word for 2011, MORE - i took more time for myself to just relax. and that is what we did. i mean look at my list - it's HUGE:


Clean oven

Wipe down cabinets

Clean out fridge

Clean floors

Organize spice cabinet

Clear window sill

Clean slider

Wipe down table & chairs













Hall closet

Wipe down sofas

Stains in carpet

Cob webs

Hang pictures

Wipe down pictures

Frame Kennedy’s school pic


Wipe down baseboards

Vacuum stairs

Wipe down doors

Wipe down door handles

Wipe down door windows

Move CD case


Wash comforter

Wash bedding

Organize closet

Wipe down windows

Wipe down baseboards



so, there is always tomorrow to get back on it! i need a day to rest. right? right. i did manage 2 loads of laundry, so all was not lost. and the master bath got a scrubbing last night. so really, some things are done! :)

i then got caught up on some blogs this evening and read my new, wonderfully admirable friend, Lee's Blog... and i literally cracked up out loud. i made the list. but no where, did i do an inventory of my internal rooms and what i need to clean there. tomorrow. tomorrow i will make that list. because that is MORE important. take some time, read Lee's blog. it will not disappoint.

i'm off to read some more. take more pain pills. and hope pain is gone tomorrow so i can be productive.

look for a post on my One Little Word for 2011 soon... and some photos!

peace and be good.