Saturday, January 30, 2010

Lucky Me!

Just had to share the news....



I actually won a prize on a blog. One of my new favorite blogs (even before I won) is the Brown Eyed Baker. She had a prize give away of a pizza peel - which I always thought would be sweet to have. We eat pizza once a week and this will come in handy. Now I just have to get going on making some yummy dough!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

One Little Word

I've been working hard to keep my yearly word going. If your not sure what I'm referring to see this post.

Over the weekend I worked on our closets. The boys had so many clothes that every time they would remove one item, three would fall to the ground. I noticed that they had about 10-15 shirts that were their favorites and worn most often. So I grab a large box and I started looking through the closet. Anything I didn't like, was stained, or just looking shabby went into the box. Then I looked at what was left. I made sure they had a few "nicer" shirts and their favorites, plus a few extra. In the end, I filled 4 lawn size garbage bags. I also did this to my closet and dresser.

Today I tackled the kitchen. I went through all my cabinets and really looked at what I had and what I used. I figured with 5 of us in the family, do we really need 20+ glasses. Now I know we have company, but usually I'll break out the nice stemware for them. So again, do we need 20 glasses and probably 40+ plastic cups. NO!

I asked the same questions in each cabinet. I know some people will say "you can never have enough of _______" but I think you can have too much of anything. If things are hard to get to because there is so much crammed in the space, there's too much. If you don't do something because in order to get the items you need it will take you too long to dig them out, there's too much.

I filled three boxes with glassware, kitchen utensils, bowls, cups, plates, etc...

Now that my shelves are cleaned and wiped down and I can actually see space between items and feel so much calmer. As I've been clean out different areas of the house I realized stress leaving my body. It's so nice to walk into a room, closet, storage area or open a cabinet and see things neat and clean.

I still have more then enough, but not too much. The key is figuring that out and really asking yourself some questions and answering them honestly.

Do I use it? When was the last time I used it? If it's been more then 1 year, you don't need it.
Does it fit me? NO - get rid of it. Don't save it for the "when".
Why I'm I keeping it? If it's really that important to you then why has it been in a box for years? Take a picture of it and get rid of the clutter.
If you are saving things for the "what ifs" you don't really need it. For example, What if next Christmas I want to make bread to give as gifts. I need the 12 loaf pans I have. If you haven't made bread in the last few years, it's probably not going to happen. So keep 1 or 2 pans and donate the rest.

Oops....sorry I got on my soap box there for a minute. Seriously, removing unnecessary items can be so freeing. Give it a try.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Card Challenge

It's been awhile since I tried my hand at a card challenge, but I found a new site (new to me) that post a new sketch each week. So I thought I would give it a go. The site is Card Patterns. This card was created using Sketch 48 .


All papers are from CTMH. Butterflies are from K&Company (Amy Butler).

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Love my Laptop

I've only had my laptop for a few months but it's become a time saver for me. All the hours I would sit at one of my children's practices is now being used to create. I loaded the Daily Digi December Files on to my laptop and some photos from December and created the following layouts:

This layout was a quick page so it came together so easily. It was a joy to scrapbook these pictures because they represent our youngest finally being out of diapers.

Our annual cookie making. The boys help decorate and my youngest helped with the cutting. The template and all the digi supplies were from the Daily Digi Files.


Pictures of the boys writing their letters to Santa.



This was the first year that no one cried when we visited Santa.



Finally, our Christmas Eve traditions. New PJs and cookies for Santa.
I have to upload the rest of the Xmas Pictures on my laptop and hopefully I'll more to show you soon.



Friday, January 22, 2010

Food!

I thought I would give you an update on my other tweaks for this month. I've been kicking butt on them....ahhh the honeymoon stage! I've been working out almost daily. I've been drinking 20 oz. or more of water, which has been hard on some days. The strange thing has been that I've been so tired lately. I don't know if I'm over doing it, but I thought with exercise and water I would feel more energetic not exhausted.

I know this time of year is very hard on my spirit. One grey day followed by another really creates chaos on my mood. Like today, it's grey and cold. I'm not excited about the day. I'm just kinda drifting thought it. I don't feel like working out and I stopped at the store and some how a box on chocolate chip muffins appeared in my cart. I came home. Make a cup of coffee. And proceed to eat 3 of the muffins! AHHHH! They were not satisfying and now I'm upset with myself. But I would probably do it again with the way I'm feeling.

What are your treats to get out of your "funk" mood? Hopefully someone has some good ideas, because I still have 3 muffins left and need some help.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Cards

I had some time to make a few V-day cards. These were based on the free class at 2Peas. I you haven't checked out Kristina Werner month class, it's really worth it. She has so many great ideas and tips.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Create

One of my tweaks for this year was to create 1 layout a week....well so far I've surpassed that goal. Here are a few paper layouts that I've done in the last few weeks. All the photos are from 2008.

This layout are pictures from our garden that Spring.


Our boys new bunk beds were a big hit:


Fourth of July gathering on our driveway - always a fun time.

Random photo of our middle dude. I just loved how he looked in his dad's hat so I had to create a page for the photo.

Friday, January 15, 2010

It never fails...

Every year when I pack up my Christmas decorations, there is always one thing that is forgotten. This year I thought I had it. I walked through the house twice. Had the kids do a double check. We had everything. It's been about 3 weeks since I packed it all away and nothing has turned up, so I was really thinking I final did it.

I thought that until last night, we were pulling out of the driveway when I saw three things hanging from our front window. How could I miss those? It's the window I sit by every day by my computer. I'm sure I looked right at the decorations and didn't even notice them.

Every year! Why? Maybe this year will be the one that I get everything packed the first time around. I can always hope!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Make the Connection

Remember the Make the Connection craze back in the late 90s. It was something that Bob Greene, Oprah's trainer at the time, and Oprah did. Well, I remember it. I read the books and I even got that companion journal to help me along the way.

During our cleaning of our storage room I came across the journal. It had a whopping 7 entries in the whole book. I was never much of a dairy keeper. As I read the entries, I was amazed at how far I've come.

Here's the entry from March 3, 1996:

7:00 am Well, I talked myself out of getting up and working out. I plan on working out tonight, that is usually not a problem. I have to work out at least three times this week.
8:00 pm Ate a good lunch, did not snack on junk. Played racket ball for 1 hour. Was not feeling good. My attitude is getting worse. How do I get out of this slump?


I still have a problem just getting up and working out, but now I eat breakfast and do my workout once the boys go to school. If I wait until later it will not happen.

I also found it funny that Bob Greene is once again part of my "get healthy" lifestyle. We got the Wii Active for Christmas and Bob Greene has videos on it to help motivate you along the way.

The biggest thing I noticed in the entries was how defeated and lost I sounded. It's nice to know that I keep pushing through the difficult areas of my life and now my entries would be more positive.

If I had to do an entry today it would be:

10:00 am - Got the boys off to school. Had a great 30 minute workout with Wii Active. Feel great!

2:00 pm - Had lunch with my little guy. Had some leftover chicken salad and an orange. Even thought I had to deal with some stressful things at work, I didn't take it home with me. I just take a lot of deep breathes and move on.

10:00 pm - Had a good dinner with my family. Had time to unwind. Had a soccer game - great workout. Life is good!
When is the last time you looked back at an old dairy, journey or blog entry? It's a great way to get a peek at where you have been and how far you have come.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Recipe

I'm always looking for a quick, filling snack that my boys will like. I was cleaning out some of my many piles of recipes that I've collected over the years and came across this yummy one. It's been a long time since I made them and I really don't know why. They are fast, easy to make, no cooking needed and very easy to adapt to what you have on hand.

The one ingredient that you may not have on hand is the flax seed. You can use wheat germ or oat germ if you have that on hand.



Powerball
1 cup sunbutter (or peanut butter)
1 cup honey
3 cups old-fashioned oats
1/2 cup ground flax seed
1 cup chocolate chips (I use enjoy life brand)
1 cup any combination seeds or dried fruit (or nuts)
Mix together the sunbutter and honey until smooth. Gradually add in oats and flax seed. Add chocolate chips and seeds/fruit (I use 1/2 cup raisins/cranberries and 1/2 cup no-nut trail mix). Gently mix. You can do this in a stand mixer or with your hands. I just use a good spoon and some elbow grease. Shape into ping-pong size balls; either by hand or with a scooper. You can eat them right away, but they'll be less sticky after a night in the fridge. They freeze well too, layered on wax paper in an airtight container.
Source: wondertime magazine; september 2008

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Twilight Saga Drama


I'm a fan of the twilight series. No surprise to those of you that know me well. For awhile there was a rumor that Stephenie Meyer was going to write a fourth book in the saga. It will be a "re-write" of the first book, but from Edwards point of view. Brilliant! I hoped that the rumors were turn.

As it turned out the book was being written, but unfortunately we may never see it finished. A ruff draft of the book was leaked on the Internet. Of course this is a huge breach in copyright laws and just ethics. On Stephenie Meyer's web-site she posted her views on this horrible issue and decided to post the leaked draft on her site for her fans to enjoy.

She states:

"This way, my readers don't have to feel they have to make a sacrifice to stay honest"
Currently she is not sure if she will finish the book. I sure hope she will! Do not let the these pirates win!
If you would like to read her entire entry on this issue or get the legal release of the draft go to this link.
As for me, I've read the first chapter and just adore it so far. I love see the other side of the situations and hearing what everyone else was thinking.
As for Stephenie Meyer...your a rocking SAHM! I look forward to whatever you dream up. I've loved the twilight saga and The host. I really do hope you finish your vision for Midnight Sun!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Off to a CLEAN start...

My hubby and I had a big task on our to do list for awhile now - clean the storage room in our basement. Since my word of the year is clean and since we had quite a few boxes already out of the storage room from the Christmas decorations; we felt this was the perfect time to get that task off our list.

It amazing the junk you find stored in boxes. Why did we even keep this? What is that? Oh! That's were those were? It was fun looking through some of the long forgotten treasures/trash that we held on to. Here is one of the beauties we came across:


This was my first doll - beanie. She has a pull string in the back and I was amazed that it still worked. In her cute little voice she would say "Let's play peek-a-boo", "Baby sleepy" and about 4 other sayings. I loved this doll. She came with me when I had to have surgery when I was a toddler and she was just always there. She has seen much better days and she use to smell so much better.

In the end we removed 1/3 of the stuff we had in our storage room. Some is junk, some we might try to sell on ebay, and some will be donated. It's a wonderful feeling to walk into the room now and actually be able to walk and see what we have on the shelves.