Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Hello Summer! This is what my kids came home to today. Last day of school - I saw a similar idea on Heidi's blog last week. I bought a new package of twistable colored pencils and two wiffle ball sets. My kids love to hit those balls in the backyard. Of course they are always flying into other yards and then the chase is on. You should see the kitchen table now. No more clean, white paper which is just what I wanted. I'll post another picture later.

Why I didn't recognize my own daughter. Yesterday I had a front row seat for my daughter's 4th grade play. She had the part of a lumberjack. She had to wear jeans and a white t-shirt to school. I was sitting in the front row videotaping the performance when I finally recognized her. That's her in the red and black flannel shirt and the mustache. I almost laughed outloud and we were in a small music room. The play was about Paul Bunyan. Very cute and I must say she makes a cute lumberjack.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Vintage Paper Swap - I have had so much fun gathering items for the vintage paper swap. I'm mailing off my package today. Of course it is, without a doubt, as much fun giving these items as receiving them. The thrill of the hunt!

Monday, May 28, 2007

I thought I'd share the inspiring books we received for our birthdays with you. This one is full of such incredible eye candy that I can hardly put it down. It's been moving from room to room. I can only dream of a trip to the Paris flea markets. My very funny friend, Laurie, bought this very funny entitled book for me - not as a birthday gift, but for becoming the mother of a teenager. My friend, Angie, brought me this book when we went out for a celebration lunch. I have heard about Oswald Chamber's books for years but have never read one. Last, but not least, I bought this incredible book for Cole after Teresa recommended it. I think my husband likes it even more than Cole does. Now I need to work on some time to steal away and read.

Friday, May 25, 2007

5 reasons I love my mom By: Taylor
#1. She takes care of me
#2. She comes up with great ideas for
my birthday parties and my friends always love my parties.
#3. She takes me places I need to go
#4. She takes me out to go
shopping and have lunch
#5. She helps me with projects, homework,
book reports, etc,.

5 reasons I love my mom By: Cole
#1. She is always there for me.
#2. She loves me back in return.
#3. She takes me where ever I need to go.
#4. She is a great mom.
#5. I don't know what I would do without her.

This was my birthday gift from my kids. What a wonderful gift. Taylor, my little writer, wanted to do this when I got tagged a few weeks ago.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

13 years ago, I was given the greatest birthday gift of my life. After experiencing seven incredibly long years of infertility, we were blessed with a baby boy. My due date was actually a week earlier, but he decided to arrive one day before my birthday. When our ultrasound results showed a boy, I thought "Dear Lord, what are you thinking? I'm a girl's girl, a girly girl through and through. Not one ounce of tomboy in me. What do I know about raising a boy? I'm from a family of girls." Well He knows, He always does. He gave me a boy not only to nuture, raise and love, but to help take care of me. This child of mine can fix anything, put furniture together and figure out anything technical. He's amazing and what a great kid. Happy Birthday Cole! We started off with the traditional birthday pancake breakfast with 13 quarters surrounding his plate. As the morning went on, he found 13 pennies with his toiletries and 13 dimes on top of his wallet. I brought him and several lucky friends a couple of pizzas, wings and sodas for lunch and when he arrived home, he found this 13-dollar banner in his room and 13 gold dollars on his bed. We are off to Taylor's piano recital and then out for a birthday dinner celebration.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

What a fun day I had. I have taken a few days off this week for birthday celebrations. This morning before I met a friend for lunch, I hit 5 thrift stores. This vintage paper swap is waaayyy too much fun. I couldn't believe my luck this morning. My treasures included this adorable 4-foot "real" wooden children's hutch with a beadboard backing, and the following vintage paper items: library plate cards, greeting cards, wallpaper, a scrapbook, 3 packages of ledger paper, 2 packages of playing cards in blue linen boxes, paper stencils, children's game cards, postcards, photos and sheets of music. I couldn't believe my eyes when I spotted the hutch. My daughter thinks it's way cute too. For the present time it will be in our playhouse. In a few years, I'm claiming it for my pantry or studio!

Sunday, May 20, 2007

We had such a wonderful weekend - starting Friday. I didn't have to work. My friend, Angie, took me to a wonderful new Italian restaurant for my birthday and brought me some sweet gifts. Friday night we barbequed and rented a movie. Saturday morning I went to a rare flea market in Chandler. Rare because Phoenix only has a few flea markets a year. I've been hitting flea markets, estate sales, Goodwills, garage sales and antique shops searching for treasures for Sparkle Bella and the vintage paper swap. It's been dangerously fun. Summer has officially started here because I finally went swimming in our pool and made the first pitcher of lemonade of the season. We ended our fun weekend by seeing Spidey 3. It was very entertaining. My favorite scene was when Spidey and MJ were laying on a giant web watching the stars.

Monday, May 14, 2007

I've been tagged by Australian Friend, Anastasia to entertain you with 7 Random Facts About Me.
1. I have way too many hobbies and interests including: scrapbooking, paper arts, reading, genealogy, miniatures, needlepoint, crosstitch, photography, collecting vintage items, jewelry making, decorating, writing, crossword puzzles, jigsaw puzzles and traveling.

2. I put myself through college and graduated in 3.5 years. While I was there I was never without a job, was a member of a sorority and was active in campus positions. I thought college was a total blast.

3. I moved to the Phoenix area from Iowa right out of college, relocated to Oro Valley (Tucson) and back to Phoenix three years ago.

4. I planned my own wedding filling countless planners and notebooks, attending several bridal fairs and salons and collecting every bridal magazine and book that I could get my hands on. My plan was to become a wedding planner. However after we were married and having been responsible for my entire wedding, I decided not to pursue such a stressful career.

5. I took parenting classes from the time my oldest was 1 and until he was 11 always learning invaluable lessons.

6. I was on the gymnastics team specializing in the uneven bars in high school.

7. I was somewhat of a travel writer before children, writing for a relocation company. It definitely put the travel bug in me and inspired me to plan adventurous family trips.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

My Mother's Day gift from my son. Now I know that some of you are wondering why I received a $2 bill for Mother's Day and I couldn't be more proud to tell you the story behind it. My son is in 7th grade. After finding out at the beginning of the year that the school lunch is almost $3 a day, I told him that he could buy 3 days a week and bring his lunch 2 days. He came home a few days after school started and said that he and several of his friends had gotten jobs as runners in the cafeteria. They check in, put on gloves and bring trays out to the employees for about 15 minutes and then they receive a ticket for lunch and a poweraid. After asking him if only the 7th graders do this, he said that it was mostly 8th graders. After all - I didn't want him to be teased. Whew! I'm so proud of him. I informed my family that under no circumstances were they to buy me Mother's Day or birthday gifts this year. Hospital bills are lurking. Well last week while Cole was working, he spotted someone paying for their lunch with a $2 bill and asked one of the employees if he could trade two one-dollar bills for it. He knows that I collect rare coins and bills and traded it for me. What a gem! My husband took the kids to pick out cards for me. Our Taylor takes forever trying to pick out the perfect card. Boy does she get it. Hers brought tears to my eyes. They served me breakfast in bed on a tray, complete with a rose from our garden in a vase. What a perfect morning.
Happy Mother's Day! This is always a difficult day for me to get through. I lost my wonderful Mother 7 years ago after a long battle with cancer. I try to stay positive in my memories of her and not be saddened when I think of her. It's taken years to come this far. I don't know anyone that was as positive as she was. I know one thing - she would want us to be happy and to be following her example of staying positive in every situation. If any of you have lost your dear Mother, remember that. I was so lucky to have such a wonderful role model and to have someone that believed in me and complimented me so often. I see her face in my children and am reminded what a lucky mother and daughter that I am.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Our fragrent, purple blooming vitex tree has made a full recovery from our frosty winter and we couldn't be happier. It's so perfect for Arizona. It loves the sun, recovers from our chilly winters and is drought resistant. Growing up in Iowa, my two favorite flowers in the whole entire world are peonies and lilacs. Neither of which will grow here, but this tree's blooms are close to lilacs.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

There are birdies flying over over heads in our backyard, but not the kind that you think. Last week we put up a badmitten set and have been having so much fun. We are enjoying beautiful nights and have even been playing after the sun sets. I found these really fun birdies and snapped a photo for you so that you can see how much larger they are than the regular sized birdy. It seems we have created a new game. Our badmitten rackets aren't strong enough for these jumbo birdies - so we are playing with tennis rackets. Anyone have a fun name for our new game?

Sunday, May 06, 2007

Her first trophy. "Mom, can you believe they gave out trophies this time instead of medals?" My daughter has earned several medals, but this was her first trophy. She finally decided that she wants to play soccer after years of tagging along to her brother's practices and games. She's somewhat of a homebody - loving to be home and finding plenty to do here. She's also busy with Girlscouts, piano lessons and lots of seasonal activities at school. When this short 6-week spring soccer session came up, she decided to go for it and loved it. We will definitely be signing her up for the fall league.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Sparkle Bella!
I haven't mentioned, have I, that I am one of the lucky participants in Sparkle Bella. I treated myself to this wonderful one-day event in Mesa, AZ on June 23. I can hardly wait. I had planned to go to Silver Bella in Omaha last year but it didn't work out, so when this event presented itself, I was one of the first to sign up. The classes sound incredible. It will be held at Scrapbooks Etc. We have four wonderful, inspiring instructors. Teresa McFayden, Kim Kwan, Carolyn Peeler and Marilyn Healey. Lucky, lucky me. We have our own Yahoo group that is buzzing with excitement and signups for fun swaps.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Happy May Day! I grew up in a wonderful, safe children-filled neighborhood in Iowa. Every May Day, we filled Dixie Cups with nuts and dinner mints, attached handles made with pipe cleaners, left them on a neighbor's door, rang the doorbell and ran as fast as we could. Does any one else share this childhood memory. We currently live in a neighborhood that does not have as many children as our old one. I don't know anyone that fills May Baskets, but it does remind me of the tradition we have at Halloween when the Phantom leaves a package. It's wonderful having traditions to remember and reflect on.