Back soon hopefully

Hi all,

I can't begin to tell you how frustrating this is to me to have my pc on the fritz for so long. Each day I log on hoping it will be back to normal....this has been happening for months now. And it always fixes itself someohow ...sometimes overnight, sometimes days, sometimes weeks. Its been a couiple of weeks this time & still I can see no images in anything ...just text. I'm fed up so I'm not logging on again till I have a working computer which should hopefully be in a week or less.

Even when creating a blog I can't insert any pictures to share because I can't see the darn button within the "new post" page that says "insert photo". So rather than bore you all with just rambling & no photos or samples of my art....I'll just wait a few days until the probelm gets fixed. I'll be back as soon as possible. Have a great week.


What colors do you love?

Have you seen the newest Basic Grey lines coming out soon? I am so excited to get my hands on "Ambrosia" In fact almost every scrapper I talk to and every blog I read is talking about Ambrosia. I think this will be my favorite line by Basic Grey by far. I adore orange. And I also love orange & grey together.

So many of my pages gravitate toward warm earthy colors...greens, browns, neutrals....but when I look at my pages I see one color that is present in so many of my pages....orange !!! From vibrant orange to more muted rusty oranges.....there is some shade of this color in so many of my pages. No small wonder then that I am counting the days till I can get Ambrosia & start creating with it.

What colors do you gravitate toward the most? Are they the vibrant jewel tones that I struggle with the most or are you a freak for orange just like me?


Seven for Sunday

Seven things I'm happy about for today...

1) So happy to chat with my daughter today and catch up. I miss her so much but the distance I think really has made us feel closer than ever. Makes me so happy that she has found her path in life & is so happy.

2) Happy the lawn is mowed and all my yard work is done for the weekend. I dislike mowing the lawn more than any other chore (except maybe stacking wood) but its so nice to see the end result. I'm sure my neighbors feel bad for me when they see me out there with my reel mower. But I use that mower by choice. What they don't know is that I do have a gas powered mower...I just choose not to use it. With the reel mower I can mow anytime I want without disturbing my neighbors & I can listen to music rather than a loud motor. And best of all...it does no damage to the environment.

3) Happy baseball is over ! Wow...never thought I would say that. But after traveling to 6 playoff games in an 8 day span I truly was glad to see an end and now be able to get to enjoying summer.

4) Happy for my health. Life is truly good and I'm thankful every day that I am healthy & happy. Now if I could just lose those extra pounds...

5)Happy to be a creative soul....scrapbooking brings me such joy. I love to write, love photography & love to be creative. How can I not love scrapbooking when it lets me do all of my favorite things?

6)Happy not to spend any money on gas today. I have decided to do my own little gas boycott. I spend so much money on gas commuting to work each day that a few weeks back I decided that I would have 1 day a week that I do not drive at all. And I really like that day at home to get things done around here....also love that it helps me save a little bit on gas expenses.

7)Happy that it rained (after I finished my yard work) so I don't have to water my gardens for at least the next few days. I have lots of gardens so any break from watering is always a blessing.


Computer love. NOT !!!

Is anyone else as frustrated by this necessary evil as I am. I love my computer....when it works correctly. Mine keeps randomly going into this mode where I can't see any pictures on it. So I can read all my favorite blogs...but I can't see any pictures you have entered into your blog posts. So incredibly frustrating. I have no idea what is making it do this....sometimes it will be back to normal the next time I restart it...sometimes it is days or weeks until it fixes itself. I guess its time to break down & get someone out here to look at it. The only other option is to throw the darn thing out the window !!!

Anyway...have a great weekend everyone. Hopefully I'll have this up & running correctly again soon as I have lots of new layouts to share.


Check out my Slide Show!

Life is crazy these days

I had thought that when I finally created this blog that I would be sooooo good at updating it daily. But life has been sort of insane lately. What with Jake having playoff games taking place all the time and practices on many of the nights that there aren't games...then there are the tennis lessons on Tuesday & Thursday nights....I guess I shouldn't be surprised that with how busy the last couple of weeks have been that I just haven't had the time I'd like to for being at the computer.

On a good note....on the down time I did have while Jake was with his Dad on Sunday I finally got the deck staining done & the last of the mulch spread. Those were 2 chores that I was so happy to get off my plate. Now all I have left to do this summer is keep up with the lawn that just grows too darn fast !!! Of course 3 cords of wood will arrive next week so I guess my free time to relax is not going to last so long after all. I am dreading winter already....and dreading moving & stacking 4-5 cords of wood almost as much.

My gardens are in full bloom right now & look like they are on steriods even though I only fertilized them once near the beginning of summer. The photo below is a favorite. I love it so much that it hangs framed & matted in my bedroom.

This layout below is one that I did with pictures from my garden. Its pretty basic but it makes me happy because it's focus is on some of my favorite plants.

What is your scrapbooking style? Do your pages tend to focus more on the photos or on your journaling. I'd have to say mine are a bit of both. I definitley want to tell the stories of my everyday life whther it be about me, my children, travels or whatever. But I like to have a great photo to support teh journaling too. Lately I tend to do a lot of single photo layouts. But on some pages 1 picture is just not enough is it?

I'll end this post with another layout of mine...this one with just a single picture. This boy brings such sunshine & laughter into my life. I'm truly blessed !!!


Take me out to the ball game

Getting ready to head out and watch this boy play in the second game of his summer tournament playoffs.They lost last nights game which was hard for him since his team during regular season only lost 2 out of 16 games. But like I told him...someone always has to lose that's just the way it is. Better luck tonight hopefully.

He has really turned out to be a natural athlete in everything he tries. But in baseball his best position is without a doubt pitching. His aim is dead on almost every pitch and this year his pitching speed has become an amazing thing to see. He's pretty good at this too.

This boy can really send the ball flying when he gets a good hit. He's still waiting for that elusive out of the park home run...but I'm sure he'll get that one day. The boy just loves baseball !!!

So proud to be his Mom watching his games. Its always sad when baseball season finally ends. Have to run...have a good night everyone.


Where did the time go?

Wow....my little girl turned 22 today. How is that possible? I can still remember so clearly riding home from the hospital in the back seat with her because she was so tiny that she was sliding down behind the support straps of her car seat. Still remember that first little smile that melted my heart. First steps, first words....so many many beautiful memories of this girl growing up. Such a beautiful child....

even more on the inside than out.

This is the girl who cried brokenly after seeing a homeless man sitting on the sidewalk eating from a tin can (her first realization that the world can be a very cruel place for many people less fortunate than her)

The same girl who a few years later as a young teen gave up her free time to work in a local soup kitchen and also as a high school student helped to organize Valentine dances at the Senior center. Who in her senior year of high school started her own mitten drive and amazed everyone by the incredible amounts of mittens, gloves & scarves she was able to encourage people to donate for those in need. Truly a wonderful, loving, compassionate young woman she has grown to be.

And now serving her country in the US Navy aircrew and hoping to one day be a pilot. I guess it would be no surprise then to know how incredibly proud I am of her & how lucky I feel to have been blessed with such a special daughter.

Happy Birthday Mand !!! I miss you & love you so much. (p.s. - you're stuck with me!)

I'll close with this simple layout I did of Amanda when she turned 21 last summer & we had our girls weekend away to Cape Cod together that was part birthday celebration & part goodbye (she left for boot camp a week later).

Sometimes less really is more isn't it? Especially if you have a great photo & a great background paper. This patterned paper is from SEI. All I did was add a patterned paper covered chipboard circle, painted chipboard numbers, small circles punched from the same green patterned paper to add a bit more detail to the background. The one photo and a thin black line drawn coming down the right hand side of the layout for my journaling to travel along. Simple...and I love it because the colors tie in so well with the picture but yet do not take focus away from it. Also a perfect example that a portrait does not need to have the subjects the whole head included for it to still be striking.

Journaling reads : Old enough to drink, old enough to be on your own, never too old to be my little girl


Seven for Sunday

Seven photos I love !!!

Ok..the detail in this picture could almost make me afraid of butterflies. But the detail is also why I love it. Love the color contrast too.

Me running for home at Fenway Park...home of the Boston Red Sox. A once in a lifetime experience to be able to play baseball on that field, actually score a run & sit in the Red Sox dugout between innings. A truly amazing day !!!

A photo of myself & my best friend of more than 30 years. I'm so lucky to know this girl ! Also love that her head looks bigger than mine : )

This picture just makes me smile ! This is what happens when you tell your son that its much too nice of a day for he & his friend to be indoors playing video games. Pretty inventive of them don't you think?

My beautiful Maine Coon cat Romeo. The sweetest most gentle 20 pound cat ever. Isn't he gorgeous?

My son & daughter when she was home on leave for Christmas. love, love love this picture !!!

Fall colors at a pond a couple miles away from my house. Nothing better than fall in New England.


Tickled PINK

As stated in my "about me" section, I am an avid gardener. This year I splurged & purchased 7 different daylilies to line the edge of my drive with in shades of pinks, lavendar & yellows from oakes daylily farm ( http://www.oakesdaylilies.com/supplier/home.php?id=s000 ) and have been anxiously awaiting the appearance of the first blooms. You can bet I was tickled pink (literally) to see this beauty out there when I went out to get the mail today.
Is that not one gorgeous flower? This one is called "Flutterbye" and is so beautiful. Flowers just plain make me happy!! And this one is perfection!!!

Hope you all had a nice 4th of July...mine was very relaxed which was perfect for me. My son & I spent the day kayaing with a friend today which was very fun and cured him of his fear of boats. Hooray !!! I'm dead tired but before I head off to bed I wanted to share a couple of recent pages with you all. This first one was from a 4 wheeling vacation my son & I took a few years back in my new Jeep. What a long ride to get to Utah from Massachusetts but what an amazing trip that was!The next one is a page I created with a photo of my son & my niece from last summer. These are not colors (orange, pink & red) I would normally choose to put together...but again, going out of my comfort zone sometimes ends in results I'm really happy with.
Of to sleep...hope you all had a great weekend.


Who's on your mind?

Happy Independence Day !! I hope your day is filled with fun & laughter.

As you go about your day today, Whether you are traveling over the holiday weekend, attending a family get together or just hanging out at home with your family who is on your mind today? I always tend to think about our troops a lot on holidays. It makes me so sad that such young men & women are overseas seeing such horrible things at such a young age. And especially on these fun holidays I feel badly that we are here having fun while they are not able to be here. I especially miss this beautiful young lady today.

She is not overseas right now.....but she's not near either & we miss her a lot. Below is a favorite layout I created of Amanda & Jake in Chicago after attending her boot camp graduation. This was one of my favorite photos from that trip & I knew I wanted to create a layout with it. This photo is a bit blurry & dark though..the actual layout is a crisp white and the photo is brighter as well. I need to work on finding the best way to get good photos of my layouts (I'm open to your tips if you want to share with me how you photograph your layouts)

I have to admit though that the design for this layout was not my own. While browsing through my Technique Tuesday catalog I saw a layout almost exactly like this one & I knew right away that it would be perfect for this photo. While the majority of my layouts are original designs that I come up with while just playing around with paper arrangement etc. I do get lots of inspiration from fellow scrap artists. On a rare occasion such as this I see a layout that I know will work for me almost exactly as I see it. And that's ok. I think its fine to scraplift a layout here & there if it works for your photo that well.....as long as you don't try to take credit for the design. So thanks Technique Tuesday for this idea !!

Technique Tuesday is one of my favorite lines of stamps on the market today & I have to admit I have a pretty big collection of their stamps. You can view their products here. https://www.techniquetuesday.com/merchant2/merchant.mvc Careful though...it can easily become an addiction.

The one scrap artist that I am most inspired by lately is this woman. http://www.retrospection.typepad.com/ I don't know her personally but have been a fan of her work for quite some time now. A few years ago the Shabby Chic type pages were all the latest rage....it was really frustrating to me because all my magazine subscriptions were full of what to me looked like really messy cluttered pages. My style tends to be more clean & linear so I am really glad to see magazines & idea books getting away from that and showing us more of a variety of layouts to be inspired by. Christine however amazes me....her pages are absolutely gorgeous.....and they have tons of layers & product on them. But she has such a talent that they never look overdone at all. She has been such an inspiration to me to step outside my comfort zone & try new things on my layouts. Thanks Christine !!!
The layout below is an example of me stepping outside of my comfort zone...and I really loved the end result.
I'm off to enjoy my day...hope you all enjoy yours too. And thanks again to all of our military for all you do for us so that we can have the freedom to celebrate the holidays. Be safe !!!


Layout to share

Hi there.....first I want to wish everyone a happy & safe 4th of July. I have so much to get done around here today & I really need to get off of this computer & get motivated. But first I wanted to share a favorite layout with you all.

There are some layouts that I struggle over for hours & still am not thrilled with the end results. Then there are those such as this one that seem to come together effortlessly that end up being my absolute favorites. Some of the things I like most about this layout

  • I adore this candid photo of my beautiful daughter laughing.
  • Love the color combination and how the colors pop on the black background. The patterned paper, rub ons & die cut words are all from Daisy D's. ( http://www.daisyds.com/ )I am loving their product lines !!!
  • Love the added bling that give this page a little extra sparkle. The necklace my daughter is wearing is a cherished antique given to her when she was 14. The picture does not do it justice so I added a few rhinestone brads attached directly to the photo to draw attention to it. Also the dotted line to the right of the photo and between some of the die cut words on the left side of the page are rhinestone stickers which add a bit more sparkle to the page. I also added some detailing to the flowers with shimmer pens which does not even show up in the picture.
  • Love the list type journaling which tells the viewer a little bit of random info about Amanda. I use list journaling often on my pages. When I'm stumped for what to write on a page I find this type of journaling to be much easier.

Ok...I'm off to finish the lawn & then to the grocery store for food for tomorrow's cook out.


Finally !!!

Wow...I have been wanting to create a blog for such a long time now. After more than a year of being inspired by so many talented scrapbook artists around the world, this computer challenged scrap artist is finally ready to bite the bullet & share some of my world with fellow scrapbook enthusiasts. I can only hope that someone might find some inspiration from me one day too.

Below is a photo of myself & my 2 beautiful children. I'm biased of course but these 2 people are my whole world. My daughter is in the Aircrew division of the US Navy & her determination, strength & dedication to her country make my heart swell with pride. My son is the happiest most loving boy you could ever hope to meet. He is a natural athlete & an amazing pitcher. He's says he is going to be a pro pitcher for the Red Sox one day. Me? Well I'll let you be the judge of that....
I have a lot more learning to do in getting this blog up & running. But hopefully one day soon I will have a blog worth reading...stay tuned....