Tuesday, July 12, 2016

My sweet fur-baby

Our family had to say good-bye to our sweet kitty Elwood yesterday. If you know me at all, you know how important he was to me & my boys. I've posted tons of pictures of him here & on Facebook & Instagram....  he was a huge part of my life & I am devastated. He would have been 21 in a few weeks. I know, he lived a full life. But that doesn't make it any easier. And we leave for vacation early Saturday morning. Please think good thoughts for my family ... that we can fully enjoy ourselves next week even though we've suffered a huge loss. 




Good-bye my sweet baby. I will always love you xoxoxox




Thursday, June 30, 2016

TBT & silly randomness

Because silly is all I can be lately. We leave in 2 weeks & 1 day & I. Can't. Wait!!! Our first vacation in 4 years! Maybe someday we'll go somewhere other than Disney/ Universal, but for now this makes us all happy :)

Here we are, last time. I just want to make a note that it was about 1000 degrees EVERYWHERE that summer, not just Disney, so if we look like we were melting we probably were. I wanted to jump into that water behind us. 




My father in law, my mother in law, me, Michael, Matthew

And now comes the silly randomness ..... speaking whatever is on my mind:

* Our flight is at 5:25 am! Yes, we'll be in Florida bright & early, but we'll all be too tired to do anything! 

* I have no idea how or what to pack. I did great last time, didn't forget a thing. This time, even though I made lists, I feel very discombobulated. Oh how I wish I had kept my lists from last time! 

* Praying no one gets sick! That didn't happen last time, but a few months ago when I did get really sick I thought "what if we were leaving today??!!" I'm sure it happens ... I just hope it doesn't happen to us! 

* My FIL was just diagnosed with Celiac disease. Thank goodness for buffets! {our hotel stay includes breakfast & dinner buffet every day}

* My poor cat, who will be 21 in August, will be staying with my mom & her two cats. He didn't enjoy it 4 years ago, I can't imagine he'll be any more thrilled this time around. Or, he's so old now he just won't care. 


More random stuff:

I've been trying HARD to earn any extra $$ I can this past year, & I've also been trying hard to SAVE. I go in spurts with shopping. I can go 3 weeks without doing any shopping except food, but I can easily cancel that savings out in 2 hours.

I was with my friend Cris the other day, who enlightened me about Shopkick. How did I now know about this?? It's an app for your phone, & you get points for shopping at certain stores. Sometimes you get points just for walking INTO a store .... sometimes you get points for scanning things {like a scavenger hunt, so fun!} .... & sometimes they have specials. I think you can scan your Walmart receipt for points. You can download the app on your phone, or send me your # & I'll send you a referral link. I believe if I send it to you, you get 250 points right away. Thanks again, Cris! 

I've also gotten back into Swagbucks. I signed up years ago but always forgot to go to the site. Now they have a button that you can add to your toolbar & an app for your phone. Much easier to remember & yes, it takes a while to earn gift cards but considering you do practically nothing, it's a no-brainer! 


I do have a card in progress, but as it turns out - more organized space does NOT give you more hours in the day! Who knew?! 

Ok ... back to it. Back to what?? Wasting time on the internet, of course :) 


Michelle {can't get my signature to work, boo}

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Thursday Tilda

Hey, I'm getting kinda good at this making-a-card-then-blogging-about-it thing. It still amazes me how much faster it all goes when I know where everything is! I've been using a little of everything, mostly things I forgot I had :)



I kind of can't believe how many Magnolia stamps I have. When I was organizing, I had a bin that I was going to put them all into. However, halfway into it, I realized I was going to need a bigger boat bin. I think it took 3 attempts to find one that fit them all. They just fit. I guess I can't buy anymore. 

hahaaaaaaaaa



This is one of my favorites. Probably because I looooove strawberries. If it's got strawberries in it or tastes like a strawberry I will have 5. {and yes, that includes margaritas}.



I kind of got silly with that Twinkling pen thing again. I just love it & I'd better stock up. Although, I noticed they come in colors. I only have clear. I can't really imagine using colors. I bought all kinds of colored Stickles & I only ended up using the clear. 



I have to admit I haven't looked at a Stampin Up catalog in a whole lot of years. I have no idea what color card stock they carry, or any of the stamp sets they sell. But Riveting has always been one of my favorites & probably my most used. I love circle sentiments & these are so simple they can be used on any kind of card. I mean, ya gotta have a sentiment, right?? 



Yes, even the poor butterfly has been Twinkle-fied. Or is it Twinkle-ized??

I need to get back into the challenge/ linky/ blog parties! I'm playing along with the following: 

Marvelous Magnolia ~ anything goes (always a favorite lol)

Magnolia-licious ~ ALSO anything goes (on a roll!)

Sincerely Paula ~ no rules weekend party (teenage me would have loved a no rules weekend party!!)

Crafty Girls Creations ~ anything goes

Crafty Ribbons ~ anything goes


Till next time!



~Michelle~

Monday, June 13, 2016

Almost summer!

Wow, how did that happen? Just yesterday (ok maybe not yesterday) I was shoveling snow & next week is summer! Only a month until we go to Florida! Hopefully it won't be a thousand degrees every day like it was when we went in 2012! 

I'm THIS CLOSE to finishing another card (I know!!) .... but it's been soooo nice out so I've been spending most of my free time planting & digging & yanking & swearing a lot. Here is what I've been up to...


This is what our front "garden" looked like before I started using that funny looking tool there. 

After edging, adding soil & compost, planting & mulching, this is what it looks like now: 


And may I add, I did every stinkin' bit of it myself! There were no husbands or sons involved in the making of this garden. I have added a few more bits here & there since taking this photo ... a few more flowers & decor. I just love it :)

This weekend I worked on the nasty pain-in-the-tail random looking shrub that has blocked our front porch since we moved in here: 


And now ....


I planted a Butterfly Bush in its place. I won't tell you how I'm feeling today after getting that beast (& apparently it had children) out of the ground! * ouch * #gettingtoooldforthis



Osteospermum (fancy word for daisy)



Peony about to open 


A peony that IS open. In my yard, the white ones bloom before the pink ones LOL


I'm usually not a fan of geraniums but I love this striped one. 

I will have tons more flowers to show you as the season goes on. Lots to do in my yard & all my plans include new gardens. Out with the old & in with the new! 

Sunday, June 5, 2016

The time has come

Well, peeps .... it's here. I've organized enough of my new craft area to actually be able to ENJOY it. I have a few things left to put away .... those things that I'm not quite sure what to do with but if I leave them on the floor next to my desk long enough I'm sure inspiration will hit .... but everything else has a home. 

And, of course I couldn't wait to start playing. It's weird to actually be able to sit in my own area far far away from everyone else & do my thing. I could barely hear my son jamming on his guitar just 20 feet away from me! {Ok, I may have just been ignoring him}...

So ... here is the product of my first session in my new cave:




 I have to say, I was a bit overwhelmed when trying to decide what to use. I had bought a few new stamps before I took my very long break ... & maybe a few when I decided to create my palace & get back into it .... & some dies ... & probably some paper ....old habits die hard I guess.




I wasn't quite up to the challenge of using Copics so I stayed in my coloring comfort zone: Prisma pencils. Oh how I've missed the smell of Goo Gone :) 



I found a new (to me) product at my stamp store, a Stella something pen. It's like glitter in pen form! Don't know if you can see in this photo, I used some on the tips of the flowers & a little on the leaves. I think I should stock up on those! 



I also used Stella on the flower. Just a touch of sparkle, that's all I need :)



And a bit of shimmer on the butterfly, which is 3 layers. I've had this polka dot paper forEVER ... it was in my scrap stash which is something I need to get better about. USE my scraps or LOSE them. I have a whole box & there is just no way that is getting organized! 



Thanks for checking out my first card made in my new happy place! The first of many, I hope! 

Enjoy your week!

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Almost done!

My cave is almost complete!! 

I actually have 2 more walls to paint in the basement, but since I painted my new area first {priorities} I was able to start organizing when I wasn't painting. And I'm almost done! Just a few more small bins of things to put away. It's all so tidy! And yes, it will stay that way. I've been a messy crafter in the past but that's because there just wasn't enough room to put everything. Now there is, now everything has its own home & now I will clean up after each "session". 



Seriously people .... if you ever feel like you're on the verge of quitting ... just chucking everything in the garbage & being done .... just step away. Away from it all. From the blogs, the web sites, the tutorials, the craft stores. With the exception of a card or two for my niece, it's been well over a year & now I can't wait to get back into it. I'm starting to read blogs again .... & browsing Pinterest ... hopefully I remember how it all works LOL



Ready & waiting .....


Sorry for the confusion on my last blog post ... that actually wasn't a new card I posted. It was one from quite a few years ago. I still have it - it's one of the few "simple" cards I've made & it's one of my favorites. Maybe that's the way I should begin again ..... simple! 

Here are a couple more favorites from the past .... just to hopefully get my creative juices flowing ...







See you soon!!! :)

Sunday, May 15, 2016

It's almost done!!

I am happy to say that my new craft space is just about usable! 



Isn't it pretty?? haha .... if you look closely you can get the gist of what it will look like. I don't have nice furniture, & nothing matches, but for the first time since I started stamping (10 years!) everything will have a place. 

The rest of the basement is coming along nicely ... I painted one more wall today. Now I need to wait for son to move his big old computer desk to that wall so I can paint the next wall. Just two more to go! 

I can't wait till this project is done! Then I can start on the 17 projects I have waiting for me in our yard :)

Have a great week!

Thursday, May 5, 2016

And now it's May

Well, time is just flying right by, isn't it?? 

Time for my monthly update! 

SCRAP AREA

About halfway done, which doesn't seem like much since it's been weeks since I started. It would really help if I could stay healthy for longer than 10 days. But I did get my table in place, & have my Copics at the ready. All I have to do is find some paper & a stamp & I'm back in business! 

This poor project is kind of the "when I have a spare hour I'll work on it" project. And with the weather {finally} getting nicer, time indoors will become even less. I no longer care about the walls. I mean, I will finish painting. Eventually. I just want to get MY stuff back in its place & get crafting! 

KITCHEN

This is the project my brother is helping us with. My brother, who lives an hour away & has his own kitchen remodel going on. This also has become a when-it-gets-done project. There really is no rush, because when it IS finally done I'll have to paint the whole kitchen. Ain't got time for that right now. At least I no longer have a hole in my wall. Always look on the bright side, right? 

DISNEY/ UNIVERSAL

Yikes, our vacation is only 3 months away! I've got some shopping to do!! 

FITNESS

This is big for me. If you are friends with me on Facebook or read this, my always-current blog (!), then you will know that I have struggled with weight gain for over a year now. My doctor isn't concerned. She said the gain, plus the rise in my cholesterol, can be contributed to menopause. Probably also the reason I don't sleep well. Thanks a lot, middle age. But it's so weird .... I've been gaining SINCE I started going to the gym. 

I was only about 5 or 10 lbs up when my son convinced me to get a membership. I started out just walking on the treadmill. I now take classes, walk the treadmill on at least a 5 incline, & use the weight machines & free weights. And yet, I keep going up. My diet isn't perfect. Anyone who knows me knows I'm a super picky eater, I love fruit but hate most veggies & I do have a sweet tooth. I'm trying to be better. I eat more of the veggies I do like (I should be orange from all the carrots I eat) & have really cut down on the sugar. But I'd rather not eat at all than eat kale, which apparently is THE best food to eat. I worked at Ponderosa in high school. Kale is a decoration for the salad bar, not something you make a smoothie with. 

So now, I've decided to start running. I decided to try the C25K program. I've only been doing it for 2 weeks but did skip ahead right off the bat, since I have been using the treadmill for a while now & can easily walk for an hour. So I'm on week 4. I've joined some chat forums for c25k peeps, plus a couple of other fitness boards. I magically started receiving SHAPE magazine at work. Seriously, one day it was in my mail box, addressed TO ME, but I never ordered it. I've been getting it for a months now & normally I don't have time to read magazines but I really like it. The fitness gods must have gifted me the subscription.

I did a bit of research before starting to run & guess what. I step completely wrong. Remember the song "put one foot in front of the other .... & soon you'll be walking out the doooooor"? {you have that in your head now, don't you? You're welcome}. Apparently walking isn't that easy. Apparently I'm a heel striker & apparently I have to learn how to step properly.

If that wasn't bad enough, I also don't breathe correctly. Geez, having to start all over again with breathing & walking .... does this mean I can go back to taking 3 naps a day as well?? 

We shall see how this all plays out. I would like to try to run a 5k by the end of summer. Just to say I did it. I'll keep you updated on my progress!! 


If you made it this far, thank you! I really hope to be back to making something other than a mess sometime soon! 




Sunday, April 3, 2016

A very slow process

It is April, isn't it?? Looks like I totally missed posting anything in March. In my defense ~ I was sick 2 weekends in a row (one with a headache the size of Texas & the other with the gastro-ickies), I've been trying really hard to get my basement finished, & we've been doing some repairs in our kitchen. 

Oh yeah .... & my son got into a car accident about a week & a half ago :( :( :( 

If you're friends with me on Facebook .... you can fast forward through this paragraph. 

So .... his beloved car is totaled. Thank goodness just the car is totaled & not him. He walked away without a scratch. He was coming home one snowy evening & came up over a hill to find a bunch of cars stopped. He tried braking but just slid & slid. He could either slide into the driver in front of him, or go into the ditch. He chose the ditch. Unfortunately, he rammed into a mailbox & flipped his car. There's nothing like getting a phone call from your child yelling "I flipped my car, come quick!". My heart dropped. My husband wasn't home from work yet. It was dark. I ran out of the house & tried to get to him as quickly as I could. Of course, the weather was bad so I was sliding. He was only a mile from our house but it seemed like forever before I got to him. Oh, & bonus ... I forgot my phone at home. Coming upon the scene ... there are no words. I saw his car upside down ..... the ambulance .... the fire truck ... all the lights. Someone grabbed me & said he was already in the ambulance & that he's fine. Seriously, he had a small bruise on his knee. I lost it. I hate to see how I would have reacted if he'd been hurt. I couldn't stop crying. All the what-ifs went through my head. Thank goodness he was wearing his seatbelt .... & that he was on a back road, not the freeway .... he was only going about 20 mph ... & so many people stopped to help & to call 911. I don't ever want to go through anything like that again.

His car, RIP:



I owe so much to this poor car, it kept my baby safe. Did I mention he wasn't hurt at all?!

So .... we are waiting to hear from the insurance company as to how much we'll receive, & start looking for a new car. Sigh .... I hate car shopping! 

But in other news .... my basement is coming along nicely. I knew it would be a ton of work & I knew it would take forever because of all the crap down there, but I just want it DONE. I paint one wall (2 coats of course, because there is no paint in the universe that would cover these ugly walls with one coat), then move crap over to that wall so I can start on the next wall. Lots of cobwebs & dirt & dust has accumulated over the last 14 years so lots of cleaning before the painting. And the prep. Oh gosh, I hate taping everything. But I'm the slobbiest painter ever so I have to do it. 

A sneak peek: 



It's going from a 2 toned puke hue, to a warm beige/ yellow. I love it! Unfortunately the ugly carpet will have to stay for now .... good thing man invented throw rugs! 

I can't wait to get back to creating. Just as I decided to try to get back into it I had to pack up all my stuff. I also bought some beads & such, & have been trolling Pinterest & YouTube to gear up for my attempt at making some jewelry. I'm sure my first few tries will go directly into the trash .... but I'm hoping to learn lots & someday I'll be a famous jewelry maker!!!!!! 

Ok maybe not ..... but it will be a fun venture anyway :)

I'm also cleaning up & adding to my Etsy shop. Lots of cards have been stashed away & I need to get those listed. Mama ain't making no money with them hiding away in her drawers!

Thanks for sticking with me! Have a super week! 


Monday, February 29, 2016

Randomness

In honor of Leap Day, which is just so random (not really, I mean it DOES happen every 4 years ... but it seems just kind of thrown in there) this blog post will be filled with random thoughts. You know, just to keep you apprised.

** My redo of the basement is moving slowly. I am so undecisive. I had a paint color all picked out, then made the mistake of sleeping on it. Now I'm going for a different color. I've been to the paint store 4 times & still don't have any paint.

** We did get our beast of a sofa bed moved out of there. Unfortunately we had to perform surgery on it in order to get it up our stairs. It was a horrible death, but it definitely put me out of my misery.



** Now that it's gone & I've hopefully picked a paint color it's full steam ahead. Aside from a coffee date with a friend on Sunday I have nothing going on this weekend so I'm hoping to paint paint paint!

** It was almost 60 degrees here this weekend! In February!! In Wisconsin!  In February in Wisconsin!

** No worries, we are on the receiving end of a HUUUUGE snow storm tomorrow. Mother Nature was just confused. 

** I have now been going to the gym 3-4 days a week for over a year. 13 months to be exact. I lift weights. I run on the treadmill. I walk uphill on the treadmill. I walk backwards on the treadmill. I've taken 3 different classes, many times. And the result? I've gained almost 20 pounds. I. Am. Done. No more. Obviously something is going on with me that is beyond exercise. I haven't weighed this much since I was 15 months pregnant. I'm tired & depressed & just .... done.

** Not wanting to end this with a negative nelly rant .... & since I can't create anything right now ... here are a couple of spring cards I made a few years ago. 




{probably my favorite, & definitely my most pinned}




{forgot about these Itty Bitties, hope I can find them again when I reorganize lol}

So there ya go, some Leap Day randoms for you. I hope you have a great week, & I'll catch you in March! 

Monday, February 8, 2016

Mike & Ike

Well, I guess Monday is my day to post, lol. I don't seem to be posting any other days! Must be because I looooove Mondays. Not.

Remember I said I may have bought a new Whipper Snapper stamp or 4?? Well, here's a card made with Stamp #2:


This is Mike & Ike Go Fishing. Actually, I think it's Ike & Mike Go Fishing. I don't know why they named it wrong.


Annnd I used my Copics AGAIN! I'm actually really liking them. It only took me 7 years to warm up to them!


I used Snow stuff & glitter all over .... & I mean ALL over. In places I didn't really mean to, so I added more to make it look like I *did* mean to. Yep, I'm creative that way! 


Just LOOK at the sparkle. Sigh .... I could stare at it all day ...

{I kind of am. It snowed a LOT here today. For those of you who have never seen snow, it really does sparkle!}


I think these two are adorable. Mike & Ike. Ike & Mike. I like Mike & Ike! I think there should be a stamp made with Mike & Ike riding a bike. Or going on a hike! Those cute little tykes :)

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