Another dare/challenge entry

One of the blogs I read ...the NZ Dare Blog ( http://nzdares.blogspot.com/ ) has a new challenge out there to create a layout with birds incorporated into it. So I am submitting the layout below for the challenge. I'm not sure if these dares are only for people from New Zealand but even so I still like a good challenge...its a great way to get inspired and connect with other scrappers.

Journaling (around the edge of the page) reads " Jake...never forget the power of dreams. You can do anything you put your mind to if you want it & work hard for it. Dream on little man and may they all come true"


Pumpkin carving & a layout to share

I thought I'd share a few photos of Jake carving his pumpkin last night. And there is Tanner lurking in the background hoping something slimy will drop on the ground for him to pounce on. I swear there is nothing this dog won't try to eat. My slippers are still his favorite though.

This is the first pumpkin that Jake designed & carved all by himself. And still Tanner lurks in the background and has not given up hope yet.

Such a patient puppy.

A little blurry but I think Jake did a pretty good job on his jac-o-lantern. He was very proud of himself.

On to other things....I finished this layout the other night with Basic Grey's new Wassail Christmas paper line. I don't do a lot of event type scrapbook pages such as birthdays, holidays etc. But I loved the versatility of this new line from Basic Grey. The only thing on this page not from the Wassail line are the tan cardstock, the title and the metal sticker that says "the spice of life" at the bottom right of the photo. Who says Christmas papers need to be used for Christmas layouts? Not me!
Journaling reads : Just an ordinary night tucking you in for a good nights sleep.

I loved this red paper sooooo much. It has such a vintage look to it doesn't it? I also loved the vine/floral sticker that looks so nice with it. And that black blob in the front of the photo...that's pesky Cody all ready to snuggle up with Jake for the night. This is far from the perfect photo..that cat is too dark & Jake is a little washed out from the lamp right next to him and dark on the other side of him....but if you're trying to capture a memory or just an everyday moment on your page perfect photos really aren't the most important thing. Not to me anyway.....

The sticker to the right of the photo was one of my favorite from the sticker sheet that came with the paper. What will Basic Grey come out with next? These last releases have been my absolute favorites by far.....but I'm sure I'll be the first in line for their next releases too.


Mug Shot Monday

I'm home with Jake today....looking at the photo below is a dead giveaway why. Have you ever seen such a nasty case of poison ivy? Poor kid. He's now on 2 types of medicine...one to clear it up & the other because its infected. You'd never know this was my same handsome boy. The weird thing is that this doesn't itch at all....I guess that's a good thing too though.

This is the scary face he's been making at me all day just to freak me out. At least he still has his sense of humor. I told him if he had gotten this a few days later he wouldn't even have to wear his mask for Halloween...he's scary just as is.

And a couple of cute shots of the dog too.....nothing scary about this sweet face. This first one was actually the end of a yawn.....gotta love that lag time in digital cameras huh?

This ones a little dark but I like the natural light from the window.


Random weekend stuff

Wow ...finally a chance to relax. Today was a very productive day. I got so much of my fall yard work done today and the weather was gorgeous, so raking leaves was almost enjoyable.....almost. I also cut back most of my gardens. It was so hard cutting back green healthy looking plants but a good hard frost will turn them all dead & slimey soon so better to do it now when its less messy & yucky.Theres still lots more to do around here but a full day of being productive definitely put a good dent in it. Tanner was so good while I got things done here so I took a break to take him for a well deserved walk and then got back to work getting things done. When we finally came in for the day I decided a little comfort food would be the perfect way to end the day. So we had this yummy homemade macaroni & cheese for dinner. Healthy....no , not likely. But I figure I burned off the calories & then some so I felt no guilt eating it.

Yesterday Jake & I took the dog to hike up the mountain again and then Jake had the annual Halloween Howler party to attend last night. Below are a couple of photos of my scary little wrestler Mo-Hawk.

Tonight he looks almost as scary as this too because he has some horrible rash all over his face & his face is swollen almost beyond recognition. It looks like posion ivy but it doesn't itch...so we're not sure what it is. I called his Dr to talk to the On Call Dr tonight and ask if they thought he should go to the emergency room rather than wait till tomorrow but they said he should be fine with Benadryl, ice for the swelling and to have him sleep with lots of pillows propping him up. But I will defintley be calling his Dr first thing in the morning to get him treated before it gets in his eyes or mouth.


Another scrapjacked challenge

Finally something to share other than hiking.....but the photo is from one of our hikes so I guess thats not 100% true. I did the layout below for the latest scrapjacked challenge. I love this picture of Jake & Tanner taken on a gorgeous fall day with the beautiful colors of fall all around us. The patterned paper is from Creative Imaginations and the stickers on the page are from Basic Grey's new Granola line. If you've never checked out scrapjacked & tried one of their challenges you really should....they're very fun. The link to scrapjacked is at the right side of my blog if you want to check it out.

Have a great weekend everyone. I'll try not to be such a blog slacker once I get through all the fall chores preparing for winter.



Wow...winter is definitely around the corner. It is COLD here this weekend. Wood stove is cranking & keeping the house toasty though. But I need to go out & do yard work & wood stacking (yes...I still have another cord to move & stack...ugh!) and the wind is howling today. It is beautiful & sunny though...but only in the mid 40's right now & that wind cuts right through you. Brrrrrr.....

Took the dog for a walk to tire him out a bit before starting my yard chores and he is happily napping on the bed behind me so I thought I'd take a few minutes to do a quick post since I've been a bit of a slacker lately. I haven't done much scrapping this week & I'm sure if anyone is reading my blog I'm probably boring you with hiking pictures & talk about yard work. Sorry about that...my life is pretty much the same day to day it seems....dog walking, housework & yard work and if I'm lucky a bit of scrapbooking squeezed in when I have time.

I have a layout that's almost done that I should be able to share soon though. So if you are reading my blog...THANKS.....and I promise to try to share something more interesting soon ok?

Hope you're all having a great weekend.


Feeling brave today

Brave & ready for a change. I actually had an appointment with my hairdresser for tomorrow but while looking online for hairstyle ideas I found a salon that specialized in cutting curly hair and had actually taken courses & been trained in a specific way of cutting curly hair. I never knew anyone actually specialized in curly hair...but I was intrigued enough to call them. They had an opening today so I bit the bullet & drove there this afternoon and got the cut you see below. I LOVE IT !!!! The girl who cut my hair was amazing & I learned so much about my hair & how to make it look its best. So...I guess I have a new stylist. The bad thing about that is that this place is nowhere near my home...its actually 70 miles away...yikes. But I like the cut enough to go back. And I'm thrilled to finally have a cut thats more stylish than what I've had the past few years.


More hiking & Tower Hill Botanic Garden

A few photos to share from today...

We spent the first half of the day hiking Mt Wachusett again & then spent the 2nd half of the day with my dear friend Liz at Tower Hill Botanic Garden. Another day of gorgeous fall weather, but a very busy day & I'm sooo tired tonight.

We tried a couple new trails again today. We are highlighting them on our map as we do them till we have tried them all. The photo below is of Bolton Pond on the Bolton Pond trail. Such a pretty spot don't you think?

The next two of Jake & I are taken on the Balance Rock Trail at....yep you guessed it...Balance Rock.

The photo below was taken from our vantage point looking across the grounds at Tower Hill while we ate our picnic lunch. I love how the pergola frames the photo so perfectly.

One of the many gorgeous colorful trees on the grounds.

And this handsome dude who has been such a great kid to hang out with all weekend.


Quick Layout share

I picked up Basic Grey's latest release last week....Urban Prarie. I don't usually go for colorful papers but lately they seem to be working their way into my pages more often. I couldn't resist these pretty papers.

I think the reason I don't use vivid colors too much is because they sometimes overpower your photos not to mention that they don't go well with a lot of my pictures. The solution? Use black & white photographs...this way your photo will stand out just by being colorless against all the color going on around it...and you don't ever have to worry if your paper clashes with your photos.

This is my needy cat Cody. He's annoying at times, pesky, under foot often...but super sweet & lovable too. He's a keeper.

All of the patterned papers & stickers (including the pink letters in the title) are from this Urban Prarie line. I mounted the butterfly sticker and title on chipboard to give the page a bit more dimension.

I also used Stickles glitter glue here & there on the page to add interest & sparkle.

Off to bed...its been a long busy day here. Have a nice night everyone.


Another perfect day

Perfect weather, perfect day spent with Jake & Tanner. I couldn't have asked for a better day. We started out at 8:30 this morning & climbed Mt Wachusett. I love that we have these trails to enjoy just a mile or so away from home. We spent about 3 hours hiking and found some new trails we hadn't tried before that we really liked. Tanner was in his element being able to run free off the leash chasing chipmunks. It was a good morning. We came home from there & headed off to drop my Jeep of to have new tires put on it. While we were waiting for that to be done we did a bit of shopping at the mall next door, had a late lunch/early dinner & saw a movie (City of Ember) We both enjoyed the movie a lot.

When we got home we took the dog for another short walk & now we are all cozy in our pj's watching the Red Sox game. Below are a few photos from our hike this morning to share with you.

Jake took this photo laying down on the ground looking up at the sky. Love it !! He says I should collect a bunch of different photos looking up at the sky and do a layout with them and call it "looking up" I think he might just have a good idea there.

Jake on Harrington Trail

Another picture taken by my little budding photographer.

And a couple we took with the self timer.

At the summit. By far my favorite picture of the day.
Jake wants me to ride on this chair lift up the side of the mountain one day. Yikes...with my fear of heights that might be tough. I told him I'd try it some day...as long as he doesn't mind if I have my eyes closed the whole time.
On Old Indian Trail...one of the new trails we tried and really loved.

Off to watch the Red Sox (hopefully) win. Have a nice night.


Perfect fall weather

The weather has been perfect here the past few days. Not a cloud in the sky & about 70 degrees. Jake had a half day of school today so I took the afternoon off & we went to Gates Pond for a walk with the dog. Gates Pond is a beautiful spot that not a whole lot of people know about so its a nice place to go for a hike and not have tons of people around. There is a dirt road that goes all the way around the pond for about 2 miles. It was the perfect thing to do on such a nice day. I'm adding a few of my favorite pictures from our stroll...

I have a thing about photos taken from behind. Love that they're candid & not posed for. This was Tanner's first time here & he loved it. Although maybe he was just overjoyed to be out of the car. But hey he only vomited 3 times on the ride this time. Ugh.....hope he outgrows that someday soon.

Such a handsome boy!

Another photo from behind. I love the colors in this one with the sun shining through the trees.

We took Tanner off the leash praying the hunting dog in him wouldn't catch the scent of something and take off on us. But he was sooooo good. Stayed right with us and he was so much happier off the leash.

Tanner finally stayed still long enough for me to get a halfway decent photo of him.

Too bad Jake was squinting into the sun on this one....the colors were gorgeous but the sun made him look a bit washed out & squinty.

Tomorrow we're off to climb the mountain....now that we know the dog can be trusted off the leash on trails it should be much more enjoyable for all of us. Have a great weekend everyone.

Another color challenge....

...for Color Combos Galore. This was a fun one. The colors for this challenge were sunflower, alabaster, charcoal gray & silver. Another one that made me step out of my comfort zone....but for this picture the colors worked. My sister in law took this photo of Jake in the back seat of her convertible and I knew I wanted to go for a sort of retro look layout to go with this black & white shot.

The patterned papers from Basic Grey's Ambrosia & Offbeat lines worked great for this retro feel. I have a really hard time tilting photos on an angle in layouts, but every now & then I'll tilt my paper & like it just fine. Hard to tell from these photos but the "Ack" part of the title are metal letters from Were R Memory Keepers. And the 3 yellow diamond shaped accents on the right side of the photo are an old gift card that I cut up. Worked perfect & didn't cost a penny. Gotta love that !!!

And a close up of the silly photo of Jake that inspired the layout. Priceless !!!


Here's something fun....

Just a quick post tonight because I'm tired & I want to sneak in a little scrapping time before bed. I did want to quickly share some thing very cool I found tonight while blog surfing.

Have any of you found this web site yet? http://www.pandora.com/ This is just the coolest thing ever. You type in a song or artist you like and they create a song list of similar choices. If you don't like a song when it comes on you can just check that off & it moves on to the next song. If you create a profile ( its free) your song lists can be saved. And you can create all sorts of different lists depending on what you're in the mood to listen to....or you can choose shuffle & it will alternate between songs from all of your playlists. This is very very cool. So far I've got George Strait radio and Sugarland radio started....but I'm sure this is just the beginning for me...

Check it out if you'd like to enjoy music you're guaranteed to love while you're online.


Color Combos Galore challenge

So I tried a new challenge this week from Color Combos Galore (see link at right of my page). They have a weekly color challenge & this weeks colors called for hot pink, kraft, white & black. Even though hot pink is waaaaaaay out of my comfort zone the combination of colors did appeal to me somehow so I decided to give it a try. Below is what I came up with.

This may be one of the only pages of mine that has hot pink on it but I can honestly say I like it. And no....that is not a doily on my page...but it kind of resembles one doesn't it? That die cut paper is new from Creative Imaginations and the color was perfect for this color scheme. The transparency overlay to the left of the photo is also from Creative Imaginations and the one to the right is from Hambly Screen Prints.

The page definitely needed something more than just the pink behind the photo so I added a bit of paint around the edge of the page & some crystals & detailing with my Zig pen & a pink glitter pen around the inside edge of the die cut paper and around the crystals. I also added black detailing around the title to make it pop. You can see this a bit better in the photo below.

And since the challenge for this color combo ends today I guess I'm sliding in just under the wire. I have to say though that I really enjoy doing these challenges....it makes you step outside your comfort zone & try things you might never have thought to do with your pages..in this case...hot pink.


Special Delivery x 2

Oct 2nd was a day of special deliveries here...

Delivery # 1 - My nephew is now the proud dad of a new 10lb 2oz baby boy named Logan. Mom & baby are doing well which is a good thing since she has both diabetes & Lupus. He is such a big beautiful baby. Thankfully for his Mom he was delivered by c-section.

Delivery # 2 was waiting for me in my mailbox when I got home from work. In an envelope sent by my Mom I found the items in the photo's below with a note on the back of the envelope in Mom's handwriting that said " for your collection"

The first is a page from my dad's high school yearbook. What a treasure this is !! That's my dad on the left. I think its funny that under his photos it say his ambition is "mechanical engineer" and his hobbies are "hunting & fishing" and the Dad I loved was a salesman and I can't ever remember him hunting or fishing. I guess his interests changed as he grew up. The funniest part of this yearbook page is the quote he wrote to be placed with his photo. Not sure if you can read it on here but it says "I can't help it if people like me, especially the girls" Too too funny Dad !!!

The second treasure in the envelope was a bunch of old photos of my grandma & grandpa and also the one in the top left of the photo that is of my childhood home. They are clearer than this picture shows & I'm tickled pink to have them. Thanks Mom!!!


More Basic Grey Ambrosia

Did I mentionI love this paper line? Seriously !! I have been scrapbooking for a long time & I've never found a product line I like as much as this one. I'm thinking I'm going to need to buy more of this. The layout below took me only about 15-20 minutes to create but I love it...and I know that a big part of why I love it is because of these gorgeous papers. I knew they would look great with this photo of my son. And I think they accent it just enough without detracting attention from it.

The decorative grey strip that runs vertically from top to bottom of the page and the red & orange swirls to the right of it are stickers that came with the paper pack. I added some black crystal stickers for a touch of bling. The title is American Craft Thickers (which I seem to be using on everything lately) And I've said it before , but I'll say it again....boy do those vinyl thicker smell BAD !!! Is anyone else noticing that or is it just the ones I bought?

Have a nice night everyone...hope your week is going well.