An Intensity About You


Ethan's Away...


so the girls will play! Ethan's gone tonight for a forensics meet so that means pizza, music and fun for us! Woo..hoo! Zoesie and I had a nice little evening of dancing and stories after dinner and now that she's in bed I get some "me" time! :) I read, watch the movie that I've checked out from the library and renewed twice, Pride and Prejudice, surf the web for some new music love or scrapbook? I think I'm going to read, after I share some fun music with you that is!
These are some songs that were on my and Zoesie's dance list tonight! Enjoy!
One of my all time favorites and a good song to listen to when in need of being reminded that it's okay to be different is this one.
I sometimes feel like this.
This is one that I listen to when I need to be lifted up and just revel in awe, her music is pure poetry, her voice so amazing and she is SO beautiful. Love her music so much.
Here is one that pumps me up and makes me feel powerful as a woman.
Here is one to reflect on.
His music is music that both Ethan and I like. Though I probably like his earlier stuff and Ethan the latter.
This song brings me back to the old days when I just wanted to have fun...I'm talking like 6th and 7th grade here! ;)
This is one by an artist/songwriter that I admire.
And this is one that Zoesie and I are sending out into the world tonight. :)

Mini Art Journal Journey - Week Eight

This week's prompt for the Mini Journal was something that you miss and man, was I able to come up with a few! ;) Yes, there are definitely things that I miss but there are also so many things that I am thankful for now as well. I also want to clarify the last statement of "time for me" as I obviously have some time for myself as I am able to kick these little cards out each and every week...I guess I should phrase it as "uninterrupted time for me". Even going to the bathroom means an audience with a toddler in the house! :) Ahhhh, all is good!

Start of a Good Book and Memories to Share with Zoey

A good weekend here; I started reading the book titled The Book of Lost Things by John Connolly...and, I really, really , really like it so far. You know when you want to read a good book but can't seem to find the exact thing that your itching for? Well this is what I've been itching for now for quite some time. After reading just the first couple of pages in the first chapter I was thinking of all the quirky little superstitious things that I did as a child, (and some that carried through to my adult life), which led me to think about how awesome it is that we have access to this wonderful thing called imagination and I recalled how I played as a child...fiercely is really the only way to describe it and then thinking about Zoey's play. Then relating to the main character's mother passing in the book I began to think about what would happen if something were to happen to me while Zoey is still so young, leading me to think then about what I would want her to know about me. As a mother, as a woman, as a child and free spirit. Which gave me the idea of making a list of things to share with her...the things that I want her to know about me that others may not think to share, either because they may not know or because it may just not seem relevant. I thought that I would start my list here due to my thinking of things last night that I want to share and I want to record them while they are fresh in my memory. The idea is that throughout my blogging I 'll add things I want to share as I see fit in additional posts labeled Memories for Zoey. I am thinking that I will eventually incorporate these things into some sort of journal to give to Zoey some day, or at the very least, if something should happen to me I'll know that these thoughts are out here for someone to share with her someday. That part is up to you, my friends and family! :)

Things I Want You (Zoey) to Know About Me: (In absolutely no particular order.)

From my childhood:

I took all my clothes and boxes out of my bedroom closet and asked my parents to move my bookshelf into the closet so that it could be my room for reading. (There was no light, so I used a flashlight). Spent LOTS of time in my tiny reading closet!

Would sometimes drop toys down the furnace vent that led from my bedroom to my Dad's studio so that I could call to my Dad and have him come upstairs, (bringing toy and giving some attention to me.)

Whenever I pray and yawn afterwards, my prayer always seems to be answered or I feel that I've been listened to. (This remains to be true today.)

When I was about 7 or 8 years old I moved my bedroom to the big dark laundry/furnace room in our house, by choice. I made my bedroom walls out of blankets hung on the surrounding indoor clotheslines. I always have loved dark and dreary places...not sure why, but I always feel safe in these environments and am able to think more clearly.

When traveling in the car with my parents I would look out the window and imagine that I was dancing outside in the fields that were flying dancing was always accompanied by music. (I sometimes still do this too!)

I used to plant "clues" of fabric scraps around in my backyard and then later I would happen upon them and solve a great mystery, sometimes my parents would find my shrieking and running across the yard with some imaginary villain on my heels.

One of my favorite all time foods was (and is) corn on the cob with lots of butter and for dessert, cherry cheesecake.

I would get into trouble for reading my books at the dinner table. "Trouble" was just getting scolded and reminded that the table was for eating and sharing family time.

I dreamed of being Nancy Drew one day.

Sometimes after reading a book I would feel as though my feelings and emotions were too big for what life could possible handle...still feel this, only now in addition to books it's after looking at you and seeing how amazing, smart and beautiful you are when I realize that my emotions are hands down too big for this universe to handle.

I have a memory of visiting family friends and making homemade pumpkin ice cream with them at their home. They pureed the pumpkin and it went into a wooden lined bucket that churned the mixture into ice was the best ice cream that I've ever had.

I used to have an outdoor playroom that had a door that was accessible to my Dad's studio. This room had four enclosed cement walls, was attached to the house but had no roof, my Dad placed a beam overhead so that I could have a swing in this room. I would swing in this room and be indoors, but out.

Every time that my family moved, I left a note tucked under a floorboard or in the molding saying who I was, what I was like and where I was moving...I've done this in every place that I've lived now as an adult too. To my knowledge, only one has been discovered so far.

As a teenager I collected greeting cards, purchasing them not knowing who I would give them to but just knowing that I was attached to the sentiment that was expressed and maybe hoping that someday I would have that special person to give them to.

Note to Self...

Re: Scrapbooking, Creating, Crafting

I've discovered lately how important it is to trust myself creatively. It's great looking to others for inspiration and guidance, to learn new techniques and get ideas but when I see something that I admire and then try to create something implementing techniques used with that project I am discovering that if it is different (I'm talking, way out there, here) from my core sense of style it turns out dreadful and I get extremely discouraged. I get frustrated with myself because I'm fighting my instinct, the very core of me and my vision. I don't want to do that. I want to be okay with what I create and have it be enough, and I'm finding that I often am when I just am concentrating on telling the story rather than "the products used", thinking about the presentation of that story and how I want it to be told. It wastes time, (fighting my creative instinct), it's detrimental to my sense of creativity and creates an almost tunnel vision regarding what I can see and appreciate in my work as well in others. Sometimes I feel as though I "need" to create something using some new fangled "product" when what I need to do is just step back and say's okay not to use the cutting edge supplies when they are "cutting edge". With scrapbooking as in all things pertaining to my life I always have found that I am happiest most when I follow the beat of my own drum.

And a Wee Bit of Fun with Photo Editing!


I could seriously do this all day long if I had the playing with pictures, love learning new things about my little editing program. Love dreaming about the day when I will have Photoshop! I want to learn how to use brushes first and familiarize myself with some of what photoshop offers so that we don't buy it and I am entirely in the dark, so for now I'm teaching myself as I go along and that means baby steps. Some day I will get there...I will get there some day. Meanwhile, I'll just have fun with what I have! :)

Wisconsin Public Radio

[edited to show how to find member stations in your area: Click here to enter the National Public Radio wedsite to find your local public station]

Can't say enough about this for the public and provides so much information, news and entertainment and really does a good job representing topics and stories from all sides with different points of view as well as providing room for public opinion. Provides a wealth of information on their website as well. -------- This morning on Wisconsin Public Radio the guest for Joy Cardin's show at 7am was columnist from Natural Home magazine and author of Eating Between the Lines: The Supermarket Shopper's Guide to the Truth Behind Food Labels, Kimberly Lord Stewart. Proved to be a very interesting hour of conversation. Learned that just because the label on chicken may say "free range" does not mean that those chickens had access to pastures, in fact a very high percentage are kept indoors and for a brief period of three weeks are given water and corn in a setting much like a factory farm - indoors without the slaughtering or fillers fed to them, but not left free to graze as a chicken on a farm would. Also spoke about organic vs. organic a bit and she listed fruits and vegetables that have the highest pesticide residue so that for those that can't afford to buy everything organic, she provided those items that may be most important for you to buy organic. The top three fruits that she listed as having the highest pesticide residue were apples, cherries and vine ripened grapes. The top three vegetables were potatoes, red bell peppers and if I am remembering correctly, the last one was celery. Very interesting show and a very interesting topic as I know that we as consumers often take for granted that what we see is what we get, not necessarily so...even when you think you're doing good and the best for your family apparently. You can check out Joy's archives on the WPR site here and read or listen to the show to learn more.


Kind of feeling as though I've been in overdrive the past several realizing that I am SO tired and need a break.

Zoey and I went to MOP'S on Tuesday and she did absolutely awesome, which is interesting because the people working in the nursery were different than the normal ones. They actually did projects and played games this time which made me feel good and Zoey loved. When I went to get her after the meeting she was positively glowing! Our meeting went well too, I sat by a different woman this time allowing us to chat for the first time since I've joined the group and we discovered that we both enjoy scrapbooking! We're thinking of trying to start a small crop night for scrapping, snacks and fun with some other women every other week or so. So that was yet another good connection made. Left MOP'S this time feeling good that I belonged to the group and hopeful for the next meeting as well. It's amazing how my outlook is directly affected by how Zoey's response is!

This morning we went to the gym for some fun and games again put on by the library group. Zoey had a blast...she always loves this. Afterwards we spent some time getting books and Zoey played puzzles with another little girl her age.

A very nice couple of days and start to the week but I am so tired, exhausted really. I find myself pushing myself ahead when I know that I'm dog tired. I want "me" time and "Ethan" time and Zoey to have "her"time and it's just not working this week. I've been wanting to scrapbook and when the time comes that I can sit down and actually contemplate doing something I'm just too exhausted and everything that I attempt just looks's so frustrating to want to be the best mom, the giving wife and there for myself and realize that it's just not always possible to be all those things all of the time! So, tonight Ethan and I are going to watch a movie together after Zoey goes to sleep, no reading and looking up now and again for me, (which I am famous for), but I'm really going to be in the moment, with him and enjoy our time together.

Mini Art Journal Journey - Week Seven


This week's prompt was: Shoes - there's always a story...was a bit panicked initially because I'm not one that has loads of shoes, basically I have my blue Airwalks, my Dr. Scholl's for work and my thrift shop boots! But then I got to thinking about my favorite all time shoe and remembered my best friend's boots! My friend Joleen (who was my room-mate at the time) had a pair of brown leather boots, brand new which she never wore, (or later as it turned out maybe never got the chance to wear! ). Whenever we would go out, I or one of our other girlfriends would always ask to borrow them...I think that it would be safe to say that at least three or four girls wore those one pair of boots regularly and it wasn't Joleen! Finally, once broken in...the perfect hippie, nature-girl, earth loven' pair of boots were taken back by Joleen...she was staking claim to her boots! Nobody else got to wear them anymore and then not too long after this "new" rule I think the heel busted on one of them! Maybe I'm remembering incorrectly, Jo - you can help me out here, but I do think that others got more wear out of those perfect boots than you did! And it's funny too because every time that I've looked for boots since, Joleen's have been the standard on which I judge by! So, yes...I guess I do have a "shoe story" after all!

Serena and Ashley


My MIL gave me some pictures that she took of my sister-in-law Serena and her husband Ashley this past Christmas a while ago and today I finally decided what I wanted to do with them! The buttons are kind of a sentimental touch for this page because they too were given to me by my MIL and once belonged to her mother and resided in her button collection. I love when I can use something on a page or project that was actually something that was used once, that has some sort of history or story behind it.

Afternoons at the Bakery

Here are some pictures of the bakery that I work at...really a cool place to be employed. And SO amazing that the owners are willing to let me work one afternoon a week. ONE! It is so nice to have the whole stay-at-home-mom thing and get to get out an afternoon every week. And to have it spent at such a low key, low stress place is definitely a plus too. Everyone that comes into this place is coming because they want's pretty much a given that everyone is in a good mood and happy to see you once they walk through that door and see what is in the old antique pastry case! Working Sunday afternoons has allowed me to meet and distinguish some "regulars". One gentleman in particular has been my most faithful customer...he's in his late fifties and through the course of working my afternoon shifts I've come to learn some interesting, intimate and funny things about him and his family just by our minute long conversations. One of them being that one of their three sons was asked to the Snow Ball Dance when in high school by a young lady, (as that was custom for this dance) and went out to eat prior to the dance ordering lobster, knowing that the girl was going to pay the ticket...without offering to pay! He is now 35 and still not married! ;) Yesterday he, (the father) came in and brought his wife introducing her to me for the first time. I was so touched as after meeting her it was apparent that he had shared much about me with her. They sat at one of the tables and we chatted for a good hour or so before they left me to my closing duties. If it wasn't for my having to close I believe we could have gone on talking for quite some time. Such good people. I love stuff like that, it makes me feel so good to make connections with people and be reminded that we all are connected regardless of age, sex, race, religion, career, etc., etc., etc., and that we all have similarities that can bring us together if we just pay attention and are open to them.

Visual Chronicles

Logged on this morning and discovered that Linda Woods...the Linda Woods that co-authored (with sister Karen Dinino) the book Visual Chronicles left a comment on my blog! Visual Chronicles is only the book that I've been going on and on about for the last month or more! :) How crazy is that!?!? She and her sister have a new book coming out this year titled Journal Revolution (Rise Up and Create!). Woo-hoo! If you want to check out the book and learn more about the authors and what they are up to you can click here.

Our Rock Star

This picture I took this summer but just got to scrapping it today. I think Zoey's expression is priceless! Love how serious she looks and with her hair all crazy/wild like it is she looks as though she really, truly just got done jamming out! She got the guitar from Ethan's parents...some days that is a good thing and some days I want to send it back home with them! ;) Hopefully, someday she will actually learn to play for real, (that's the Mama that hears her playing it now speaking!), or maybe not - and that's okay too. All I know for sure is that she is something this little girl so much.

Boxes that I Put Myself in...

Categories. If I make frosted pink cupcakes with sprinkles on top I am all frills, girlie, cute...fluff - thus rendering it impossible for me to see the way the dew is like a globe clinging to the pine bough, suspended there for only moments holding in it's very existence a mirror image of all that is imperfect and good, wrong and right, before falling and being swallowed whole - no regrets, no doubts. No double takes or second glances.

Must stop thinking this way, must stop judging myself. Must embrace that I am so many things, and that it's okay...I don't have to pick and choose. I can embrace all of me. I can make "cute" scrapbook pages and I can love poetry. I can listen to Sinaed O' Conner and John Denver. I can want* to be the woman that wears the slinky black dress one day and the next day I can choose to wear my thrift store, mud caked boots - and that's okay. I am not being hypocritical if that's me. Right?
* Notice I said "want" here...the opportunity does not often present itself to actually wear the slinky black dress, not sure that I even own one anymore, one that fits anyways! :)

Zoesie's Party

Yesterday was a fun day...Zoey had a Valentine's Day Party to go to that was held at the old gymnasium in the community building here in town. She had so much fun, it was so good to see her running around with the other kids...she really needed that with being cooped up here at the house all the time this winter. So good to have her expel some energy and so awesome to see her with other little ones!! I also met another Mom who is the wife of one of Ethan's colleagues at the school. As soon as she heard that Ethan was a teacher she warmed up to me right away, she seemed really nice and it felt good to make another connection. Also, my friend Betsy was there and mentioned that she had entered into a photography competition at the Campanile Center for the Arts and that the show is being held this Saturday, so I'm hoping to try to get over for that this weekend now to see her stuff. So much fun stuff going on here, exciting! And you can see that we made cupcakes yesterday...Zoesie is all about stirring and "cooking" lately. The past few nights the conversations before bed have gone like this: "Mama, what do pumas eat? Do they eat leaves? Do they have stoves?" "Mama, what do jaguars eat? Do they eat meat? Are they big or little? Do they have Mamas and Papas? Do they have stoves?" and so on and so on...the big concern she has is if these animals have stoves and how do they prepare their food! So funny what little ones think about! Love it!

Happy Valentine!

I discovered Agatha Katzensprung's photography yesterday and I can't stop thinking about the images that she's captured. They are hauntingly beautiful and each one has a story just waiting to be told. You can view some of her stuff here. Happy Valentine!

Earth Will You Be Mine?

Got this from ReadyMade's site...I especially like Step #4! :)

Tired of the commercialization surrounding Valentine's Day? Want the celebration of your love to be more ecologically or naturally oriented? Pay homage to your lover in an eco-friendly way.

STEP 1: Forget about cut roses. Give your valentine a rose bush to plant in his or her garden or a potted miniature rose plant to keep on her windowsill.
STEP 2: Instead of buying chocolate confections with packaging sure to end up at a nearby landfill, make your lover his or her favorite sweet - fudge, cookies, chocolate soufflé.
STEP 3: Send an electronic valentine (see related eHow) instead of one that originated from the trunk of a tree.
STEP 4: Make your love a present instead of buying one. Ideas: self-painted pottery, a photograph you took, hand-knitted socks (assuming you knit), a self-composed love song, a donation in his or her name to your eco-oriented nonprofit of choice.
STEP 5: Plan an evening stroll through a nearby park, forest, or beach. Hold hands, stare at the stars and moon, and listen to the sounds of nature. Dress warmly. If it's rainy, find a covered vista or gondola and kiss to keep warm.
STEP 6: Make reservations at an eco-friendly vegetarian restaurant, or don your chef's hat and prepare a vegetarian meal that's good to the tastebuds and good to the planet.

So Proud


Mini Art Journal Journey - Week Six

This week's prompt for the mini journal was to do something on love or hearts, (fitting in to the theme of the holiday that's approaching). I love Ethan and I love Zoey, my family and friends but what I wanted to do for this card was to share my thoughts of what love is or isn't and that I still don't know what it's all about for sure...that to be honest, all I know or have learned is that it's a living, breathing thing all on it's own - that needs space, that needs tending to, that has no written rules or promises or contracts. It's something that we need to take care of, protect, and nurture for it to thrive. I have been guilty in the past of taking the "image" of what love looks like and trying to apply it to my life and then being incredibly disappointed when it didn't look to be the's been a challenge shattering the "myth" of bliss and true love that society puts out and accepting that true love, the nitty-gritty good love takes work... and it is SO worth it.

Excitement, Books & Pancakes

Another random post coming I think...I am coming down from my excitement with my brief brush with fame. ;) Yesterday I sent an email to Ali Edwards letting her know just how thrilled I was and she responded! I couldn't believe that she took the time to do that, says a lot about what kind of person she is I think. Pretty neat and pretty special for me.

Lot's of things on the {to do} list of which is getting to the library to get some new books for Zoey, this last batch of books that we got included Carrot Soup by John Segal which Zoey just loved! It's all about how Spring is coming and rabbit is getting ready by plowing and planting his carrot seeds and watering the fields. Then he patiently waits for his crop to be ready and when it's time he goes out to harvest his crop and discovers that the carrots are all gone! He cannot find one single carrot! So he goes around and asks all his animal friends if they've seen his carrots. The neat part is that when he's asking one friend you see another animal friend in the background pushing a wheelbarrow of carrots or carrying a basket of carrots going somewhere (?) in the end it turns out that all of rabbit's friends have surprised rabbit by gathering all his carrots for him, sneaking in his house and preparing...CARROT SOUP! Then there is a recipe in the back of the book guessed it, Carrot Soup. A fun book! I need to return my copy of Visual Chronicles which I SO do not want to do! I've already renewed it twice so I think that I probably should return it but I really don't want to! A very good book if your into altered imagery or journaling. I want to get Alphabetica and Collage Unleashed but it doesn't look as though the library carries them so I'm going to inquire on those today at the front desk to see if they can special order them or something.

Oh, and the above picture is Zoey's crocodile pancake...her request...her pancake! :) Have a great day!

Runner Up!

I am SO excited! I entered a contest, (my FIRST!) over at Two Peas a couple weeks ago and I just found out tonight that I won runner up in the overall category, (got a gift cert. for supplies!!!) I cannot even tell you how thrilled I am at this...for so many reasons, one of them being that this contest was judged by none other than Ali Edwards! This is a girl who's work I admire so much, she is SUPER talented and her work always inspires. Wow, she looked at my stuff! That is very, very cool! :) And, probably most importantly winning runner up in this contest has given me a little boost personally...I have brief moments of wondering if spending time on this craft is silly, if it really matters, it seems that so many people tend to not "get it". The "why" of doing this thing called scrapbooking and I guess this just kind of reminded me that this means SO much to ME and that I should just go with that and see what happens. I'm pretty sure only good will come of it because it is being done out of love, my love for my family, my friends, my life, and the love of playing with art. Really feeling the love tonight! ;)
In addition to finding out that I won tonight I got an email from Wilna Furstenberg giving me a big congrats! She is the first online friend that I have made and wow, what a girl! She really can make a girl feel that it's okay to be proud! Thanks so much Wilna for your note of congrats, you really made me smile! Yay!
It's so funny, the other day Wilna mentioned on her blog that sometimes you're working on a page and you're reminded that "yeah, I can do this...this is good...I know how to scrapbook!" and she followed it up with this comment "if i can inspire ONE person to give God a chance, to be more creative, to laugh more, do more, pray more, read the Word more, be more devoted to their husbands, to have more patience with the kids, start to exercise, i will have a reason to live. you know why? because this is exactly what i am striving for everyday. this is what i want for myself. and one thing that i realized is that your harvest (that what you want) will be the place you want to sow the most seed. So, i want to inspire." She, Wilna has really been inspiring me as of late, thanks Wilna...and it's the funniest thing but when I was working on this page the sun was shining in on my art table, I was listening to some really funky children's folk music-humming along and Zoey was right next to me painting and the whole time I felt GOOD...really, really good, as though everything was aligned just right and things made sense and that I was happy where I was and totally engaged in the moment. Right there, right then and this is what became of it! SO happy and SO inspired! :)

And now for the goodies of the was to be a page that conveyed why you scrapbook. The journaling under the photo collage reads:

Why Do I Scrapbook? {the supplies}
One of my earliest, fondest memories as a little girl is walking into an art supply store with my Dad and looking in awe at all the colored paints, pencils, brushes, and papers. I remember the smell too...a very earthy, lovely smell always accompanied those visits. To this day I LOVE more than anything looking at different colored, patterned papers, looking at pencils and paints. I love picking out new supplies and bringing them home to sort and organize at my whim. I can't explain it really any better than a little child walking into a candy shop and being in heaven. I LOVE art supplies! I love making things with my hands. I love "exploring" different ways of using things. I love just sitting and thinking of what I could use my supplies for. I love the feeling I get when I'm in my "creative" frame of mind.

Why Do I Scrapbook? {to measure growth}
I love to see the many changes that occur throughout the passage of time to the ones I love, whether it is physical changes that can be seen in photographs, or the emotional changes that can be captured and remembered in my journaling or changes in my style of scrapping. I love the freedom that scrap booking allows for, the many allowances for change. Love that I can create something neat, organized and “together” one day and on another day I can go crazy and create something with wild colored paints, adding staples and stitching and that it is okay…I am allowed to grow and be myself on my pages, however I feel, on any given day.

Why Do I Scrapbook? {to tell our story}
Probably the biggest reason that I scrap is to be able to tell our story so that down the road somebody will know that we were here and this is the way we saw things, these were the things we were thinking, going through, exploring. I love documenting the little things like making Zoey Mickey Mouse pancakes for breakfast or that one of her favorite story books at the age of two was Corduroy the Bear. Now that I am an adult I see that those little things really end up being the big things in life. I’ve discovered that scrapbooking is an emotional outlet for me, photography let’s me capture moments that mean something to me and then I can journal about them, releasing something from within myself, it’s a form of therapy, a part of my own very personal story that someday someone will perhaps get a glimpse of…all because I scrapbook.

Oh...and to view the page on the Two Peas website you can click here! Have a GREAT night!

More Beautiful


Some Ramblings on a Friday

Quote by Beth Moore:
"The lifeblood of integrity is becoming the same person no matter where we are--no matter who's around."

I found this quote on Rebecca Sower's blog this morning and really spoke to me. It wasn't that long ago it seems that I was constantly "being" someone for someone else's sake. Like being the chatty Cathy around that person that's quiet or acting submissive around someone who seems more powerful. Feeling the need to act "intelligent" around those that seem to demand intellectually equal (in their eyes anyways [eye-roll here]) peers. There was a time when asked the question, "and what is it that YOU do" I would reply truthfully, that I was a stay-at-home-Mom quickly followed up by an explanation of what I did before or what I hope to achieve next. Thinking that my answer could not possibly demand respect, after all I'm just lounging around all day watching soaps and eating bon bons with my two year old right?!?! It's funny how we let others determine our sense of self worth at times. Now that I'm feeling that I'm in a more comfortable place with myself...I think that I'm sick of being the victim and knowing, (now), that I most likely put myself there by allowing others to "see me" in that way by making my response a bit less than confident. I know that I'm important, that I'm intelligent and that what I'm doing here at home with Zoey is the most challenging and selfless thing that I could ever do in my lifetime and the outcome, whatever it may be will be so worth it. Just days ago I was looking for advice on what to do here with Zoey...these long, cold, winter days have been a bit challenging. Yesterday we went out and got some books on tape at the library, (Curious George and The Little Engine that Could) and we made some gooey chocolate coconut bars together here in the kitchen and then we cleaned up together afterwards...we had fun and I know that she was learning things and gaining more confidence and grasping ideas of cause and effect and for that brief moment I KNEW in every bone in my body that I was a good Mom and that I was doing a good job. It's just all those other moments in between and that follow that I begin to wonder again. ;) Am getting way off track now, mostly just wanted to share the above quote and the sentiment attached.

Knitting for Peace

I talked with my Mom earlier this week and she is in the process of getting together a group of women in her community together to knit for a cause or for a specific charity organization, something to spread good to those in need and to bring a community of women cool is that? Anyways, I was perusing some neat-o crafty sites this morning and came across this book. The author, Betty Christiansen is from La Crosse, Wisconsin. Excerpt from a review: In her book, Betty gives a brief history of charity knitting and profiles 28 organizations that encourage knitters to stitch for a cause. Whether for preemies or babies with AIDS, cancer patients, soldiers, refugees, the homeless, or an orphan pet awaiting adoption, this book offers plenty of reasons to pick up your needles and do what you can to spread warmth, love and hope to those in need around the globe. This is one of those great knitting books that contain patterns and stories. So you can read inspiring stories about the dedicated people who saw a need and started major charity efforts out of their own homes, and then grab your needles and get to work. The book contains a collection of wonderful patterns to get you started. From prayer shawls to preemie and chemo caps, teddy bears, afghans and socks, Betty has collected some great patterns to get you started. She also included helpful mailing instructions to help make sure you get your donations to the right place. This a great book for anyone who wants to use their knitting talent to do good in the world.

So, Mom...check this out! :) And everyone else... sometimes it's the little extra special touches that we put forth into the world that make a super huge difference to someones life. Go on...CREATE and make a difference! :)

Because I had to...for Ethan.

This is really funny: The Secret World of Scrapbooking, (if you're a scrapbooker maybe?). Happy Thursday!

We never have any fun around here... ;)


seriously, we have been hitting a wall so to speak with ideas of what to do with our days here at home together. There are only so many days in a row it seems that we can handle playing play dough, or pretend play with her toys, build indoor forts and play babies...if anyone has any ideas please be forthcoming. I really do not like her watching lot's of videos or t.v. but it seems that lately it is so easy to just hit "play" while I'm getting lunch ready, doing dishes or just getting in the shower! Do not want that to become a habit. We've been reading stories every day, (which we both love) and having little "dance parties" with fun music and I've been gathering ideas consisting of some easy baking...but other than those, I'm at a loss...she also loves painting and coloring, but that lasts just so long it seems and she wants something else. Will figure something out. Some days it seems that she's just following me around wanting to know what's next and sometimes I just don't know!!! ;)

Mini Art Journal Journey - Week Five

Ethan got to stay home from school today as it was called off due to the extreme cold temperatures! Yay! That meant that I got a little uninterrupted creative time, and I used it to do my weekly mini journal challenge. This week's idea was to use some ephemera from your week. I chose to use a receipt showing the purchase of three books that we got at a local book store here in town. Zoey's book was of course the first one listed, Green Eggs and Ham by the one and only Dr. Seuss. Once home after reading it to her, (five times!), she said, "I want some eggs Mama"...this coming from a little girl who has never taken a single bite of an egg! I think we have some green food coloring in the cupboard...

Some Yummy Goodies!

Look at what I got in the mail today! All the way from Canada!! Wilna is SUCH a sweetie, I absolutely cannot get over what a cool thing this is. She sent me a box of scrapping goodies just for helping her with her online class! And I thought that getting to do the class was a special treat! :) Am so happy right now, so very, very neat that this connection was made with this awesome and extremely talented girl! Thanks so much Wilna!

Wilna's Class and Designer's Notes...


I just went over to the Designer's Notes website and discovered that the project that I was doing for Wilna Furstenberg's class is posted on the website as the layout of the month! :) How cool is that?!?! And, did I mention that for doing this project for Wilna I got ANOTHER free class given to me through Designer's Notes? I'm enrolling in a class called Escape with Doodlebug (Doodlebug is a line of scrapbooking products) which is being taught by Claire. Pretty fun and exciting stuff! Just had to share!

A Bit of Scrapping this Morning


Been having some fun going through old pictures lately, this one wanted to be scrapped today! ;)
Was a bit of a challenging afternoon here though. I was taking the laundry downstairs to the wash and fell down the basement stairs, first landing with all my weight on my bum, (hands were holding laundry), and then bumped the whole rest of the way down. Sounds funny I know but not a good thing, I actually cried like a little kid, (I don't even remember doing that while giving birth!), I'm in quite a bit of pain but thinking, (hoping) that my tailbone is just going to be really, really bruised. Will see if I can get out of the bed in the morning....that'll probably be the test. It isn't comfortable for me to sit so I'm kneeling right now which really isn't all that better either! Think I'll sign off for now...wishing everyone a good night. -j

Another little face-maker in the house...

here is the little goofball making faces at herself in the mirror! She was saying things like "Hi, I'm Zoey Raen"..."say, hi"..."say hi!".."I love you Zoey." Love these little moments of her being her silly little self! Also loving these AWESOME dinosaur pajamas...they are made of blanket fleece, so soft and so warm but the coolest thing, (besides the dinosaurs of course!), is that the feet of the pajamas are convertable feet, which means that when she gets too long for them, (seems as though she goes through another growth spurt every other day!) the toes of the pj's flip open for her feet to go out, (like cuffed pants) and she can still wear the pj's, just with socks! Makes a Mama happy to find stuff like this! :)

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