Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Happy New Year! Peace!

Well I just can not believe how quickly the years fly by. I turned 48 this month, Christmas flew by and my daughter turned 21 December 27th. Where has the time gone??
This year has been tough for me with matters of the heart. But, I am finding my way. John and I are hanging on to love and hoping for peace in 2010. We have pretty much figured out that everthing starts with love peace and happiness, and then things can only get better from there.

Which brings me to the true subject of my post today. The wish of peace for all! It begins at home. Here are some "peaceful" moments in my home.
Here is my son Zach and our dog Eva enjoying a quiet moment. Don't they look comfy? Eva has turned out to be such a perfect fit for us!
Eva and Holly seem to be "tolerating" eachother as they rest on my bed. Dog and cat side by side, how is that for peace?

Here they are sharing the attention with mom. They have their moments of disagreement, but then they seem to just co exist peacefully. Hmmm, just like with humans? :)
I do truly hope for peace in the New Year, for myself, my family and friends, and you my faithful blog readers. Happy New Year! May you reflect on your blessings with thanksgiving and look forward with hope to a wonderful 2010!!!!!!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

A busy pre Christmas weekend!

We started our Saturday by volunteering to host a childrens Christmas party for a local non profit family organization. Several of us and our children helped the kids with crafts, a hot dog lunch, some cookie decorating and a visit with the big man Santa of course!!! It was hectic but fun!
My 11 year old son even enjoyed his time with Santa! I think he Believes! :)

I will never be too old to visit with Santa!
Later in the day we had a family party to attend. It was a great evening!!! We didn't get home until almost 2 am. I didn't wake the kids up for church this morning. But I went with my parents and todays music was Christmas carols of course! My favorite!!
The message was about finding PEACE, and these days who doesn't need to find PEACE. The message was very touching.
Then off to get my baking supplies for the week.
I tried to make candied walnuts, but I was out of parchment paper and thought I could use wax paper. I was wrong! The walnuts stuck to the paper! So that didn't quite work out.

Then it was on to making "Cracker Candy". I got this recipe from a friend at work. The recipe says that it is from Aunt Libby's Kitchen. I don't know Aunt Libby, but I am thankful for her recipe.

35 to 40 Saltine Crackers
1 12 oz package of chocolate chips
1 cup butter
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
Instructions: Line a greased 9 X 13 cookie sheet with crackers, one layer thick only. Melt butter in sauce pan. Add brown sugar and stir until sugar is melted, blended and bubbly. Pour over crackers (crackers may float-that is ok) Place in preheated 350 degre oven for 10 minutes. Remove from oven. Add chocolate chips to to top, spread until melted evenly over crackers. Add nuts if desired. Bake again for 15 minutes. Remove and cool. Cut into squares.
It took quite a while for the chocolate to set. Here is the packaged finished product.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

A Christmas Crafting night!

OK, so I take 2 hours vacation and ditch work to go see Blindside with my son and parents this afternoon. What an inspiring movie! If you haven't seen it yet, go see it.
On my way home from the movie I got a ticket for not stopping at a stop sign. I saw the lights flashing and thought what the heck did I do. I don't even remember going through this particular stop sign, that I have gone through many many times. I guess I was on autopilot!
CRAP!!! I haven't had a ticket in years! Like 20 I think??? Bummer!!! Hmmm, was I being punished for taking a last minute vacation from work????

I didn't let that stop me from having a good evening. After dinner and walking the dog, I got busy on some bags and boxes. I actually have had 3 orders for the bags! I certainly won't get rich from the orders, but it is nice to know that people like my work. This was my last order of 8 bags. I found the poinsetta's at Beverly's. The paper is from all sorts of sources and the pretty ribbon is from Stampin' Up.
Here are more of the 3 tier boxes that I am really liking!!!! Julia sent me this lovely paper and I bought this gold ribbon at Costco a few years ago. I found the bells and gift tag on clearance at Pier 1 after Christmas last year. I am really liking the gold!

I just had to put in a pic of Eva as she lounges in my leopard print robe. She is such a sweet girl! Just love her!!!!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

I am in love with our furry new addition!

Zach and I picked up Eva yesterday. I am not exaggerating when I tell you this little girl is a love! I must admit that I need her right now more than she needs me. It was my sons weekend to go to his dads so it is just me Eva and my cat Holly this weekend. I am adjusting to being single again and with the Holiday season I will tell you that it is not so easy.
Eva went potty when I took her outside! Yippee!!!
Then she snuggled by me while watching TV. And being the bad pet owner, I didn't put her in the crate to sleep. I let her sleep in my bed. She is such a little snuggler!
Holly the Queen cat is even adjusting. She slept by my feet and is just checking out this new addition with much caution. We think Eva is part Toy Fox terrier and Jack Russell Terrier, but you would never guess that by her mellowness. As I sit here typing she is lying down in my lap as content as can be.

Had to buy her this cute little sweater! My friend said if we start wearing matching clothes, she is going to have me committed to a mental hospital :)

My son really didn't want to leave for the weekend with his new puppy here. But he will have plenty of time to bond. Since I am the Momma, I think it was perfect for me to be alone with Eva for the weekend to get her adjusted to her new home.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

How to dress up a Hershey bar

Who doesn't love some Hershey chocolate?
One way to dress up the bars is to wrap them in scrapbooking paper and tie them up with ribbon and a tag. Makes for a nice little thank you gift or hostess gift. I found the regular size bars in a package of 6 for $3.18 at Wal Mart. I also found the large bars at Wal Mart for $1.50 each. I just received some new paper and ribbon from Stampin' Up today. Gave me a little motivation to create tonight. I am still making the little bags with the top note die. This time I just embellished with a nice bow and button! Simple and easy. I used the same paper and ribbon for the Hershey bars.
Here are the large bars individually wrapped and the 3 stacks of regular size. I made litte tags for them and that is it! Now I have to snap out of my craft mode and fold some clothes and clean the kitchen! YUCK!!!!

Monday, December 7, 2009

A furry new addition to our household!

My son Zach and I went to meet Eva the Diva tonight. She looks bigger than she really is in this photo. But she is a tiny little love bug with long legs. The foster mom said she believes she is part Toy Fox Terrier and Jack Russell. We don't really care what breed she is, we just fell in love with her sweet personality. The nice foster mom has potty trained her and says she is about 6 months old. Can barely wait til Friday to get back and pick her up!!!
This is my new baby girl! (oh wait, this is Zach's puppy!) :) We all know who will really be taking care of her anyway now don't we? :)

Friday, December 4, 2009

December 4th??? Are you kidding me???

Really, I just can not believe that Christmas is just around the corner! It is scary how fast time flies. I do plan on finishing up my shopping today. I have really cut the list down, probably just like everyone else. Although I cut the list down, I still have to make my packages look pretty!!! I am loving this paper and ribbon purchased at Costco. Such a great deal! The ribbon comes in a roll of 50 yards! I have enough for gifts and crafts!!! Score!!! I also purchased the gift tags at Costco, they are very pretty, and there are so many different designs that come in the package. There are even gift card holders in the package. The paper came in a two roll two sided set! Since I am cutting back on my shopping I probably won't even use 1 roll this year. I love the blue white and silver snowy look!!!! Great deal!
I found this cool sparkly bow at Big Lots for $4.00. I love the color! I really didn't need it, but I hung it on the inside of my front door, for me to look at while I am in the living room!

I guess my kitty is getting in the Christmas spirit, she decided to lounge in the top of a box with a bag and watch we wrap gifts. Silly cat!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!!!! Gobble Gobble!

Good Morning and Happy Thanksgiving! I look forward to a wonderful day with my family. I have so much to be thankful for today and everyday. My list of blessings is long, but here are the top blessings: My children, my parents, my friends, a great job, a home and a nice comfy bed. We often forget that there are many who do not have these things.

I am sure all my crafty blog buddies have much to be thankful for today. I thank my blog buddies for sharing their ideas and inspirations. Speaking of inspirations I thank my blog friend Jen over at Lipstick and Laundry for these cute little goodies! So simple to make!!!
Mini vanilla wafers adhered to a Hershey kiss with a dab of chocolate frosting, topped with a dab of chocolate frosting for a stem and there you have it Sweet Little Acorns!

Dessert is done! Doesn't it look yummy? This one is so easy and goes over very well.
This is the recipe:

1 package Duncan Hines Yellow Cake Mix

1 26 oz can of pumpkin

1 12oz can of evaporated milk

3 eggs

1 1/2 cups of sugar

4 tspns pumpkin pie spice

1/2 tspn salt

1 cup of chopped pecans or walnuts

1 cup of melted butter

Cool Whip or Rediwhip for topping

Grease the bottom of a 9 X 13 pan. Combine pumpkin, milk, eggs, sugar, spice and salt. Pour into greased pan. Sprinkle dry cake mix evenly over the top, sprinkle with chopped nuts. Drizzle melted butter over the top. Bake 50-55 minutes at 350 degrees. Serve with whipped topping! Dee-Lish! I promise!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

More little boxes

I am sorry and I hope you can forgive me for my OCD. When I find something that is simple yet very cool, I have to keep making it!! I am sure if you have read my blog for any length of time you have figured that out. So thanks for coming back and bearing with me.
Here are the little boxes again. I can make them now without looking at the tutorial. Sweet! These are providing great stress relief therapy for me :). I had to post these because I love the colors. They are not for Christmas, they are gifts, but if I changed the ribbon to snowflake ribbon, then they could be used for Christmas.
I do hope my recent crafty posts are inspiring you to create! Have a great evening!

A couple of cards

Just a couple of cards to post today. I haven't made many lately. I actually needed these for work. Our employee non profit group is donating Thanksgiving groceries to 2 families on Monday. We thought it would be nice to give them a Happy Thanksgiving card with the groceries. I cut a 8 1/2" X 11" piece of cardstock in half to make a 5 1/2" X 4 1/4" standard card. I used heavy cardstock to cut out 1 top note die and cut that in half, then added ribbon and a button to that. I then cut a piece of 3" and 4" scrapbook paper and put it all together. I used the computer to print out the greeting.

The second card is for an employee who is part of our non profit group that is leaving work. This card was also easy. 2 top note die cuts, I cut the perforation off of the pink piece so you could see the brown behind it. I used the curly set punch and stamp from Stampin' Up for the greeting and piece of ribbon hot glued and tied and a little button for the finish. I am really loving the pink and brown.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

A little more Christmas Crafting

To keep myself from going insane. I have narrowed my crafting this Christmas down to 3 paper projects and a couple candy making endeavors. Both of the boxes in the photo are made from the tutorial over at Splitcoaststampers . The only difference between the two is I didn't add the top note die to the stacked boxes. These little stacked boxes are so easy to make and all you need for them is heavy cardstock paper, something to score with, adhesive (I use hot glue so they don't fall apart) and a small round punch. Actually, you don't have to use the round punch if you don't have one. Finish off with pretty ribbon and a little tag. I think they would look beautiful sitting on each persons Christmas dinner plate. I will make alot of these two and the little bags that I showed 2 posts back.
For my candy making this year I have decided on candied pecans and almond roca. Yummy! The homemade candy will go in clear cellophane bags with lovely ribbons and tags. Mints and kissses and other bagged candy will go in the boxes and bags. Ready, set, go! I want to get the Christmas stuff done! :) Happy Crafting!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

A Christmas Box

There are actually tiny little pizza boxes under this pretty paper. Julia gave me the tutorial and a sample (the snowflake box) Friday night. She spoils me just like my mom! Love them both!
Have I mentioned I am not good with hardcopy tutorials? However, I was feeling a little brave this morning and tried this one. Not so difficult after all! These are now on my Christmas crafting list. I am really loving the brown paper with snowflakes and blue ribbon! Here is a photo of the actual box that the cute top note dies are adhered to. You might want to try these! Here is the link to the tutorial Splitcoaststampers.

This top note die has been the best craft investment I have ever made. If you want one go on over and see Julia. If you don't want to or can't buy one right now I would be glad to cut some out for you if you want to try this project or any of my other top note die crafts. Just get in touch with me via email or comment to make arrangements. My Christmas gift to you, my blog peeps :)

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Craft Night

It was so nice to see my crafty friends Julia, Judy and Mona last night.
This was the first item Julia had us make. This beautiful reindeer card. All Stampin' Up supplies. Then we made this oh so cool, yet oh so easy gift card holder. I am showing you the inside and out here so you can see how cool it is!!! If you want directions to make either of these items or need to order Stampin' Up supplies go over and visit Julia at her blog.The gift card fits perfectly in the center fold.

Lastly, I am posting this to show Julia, Judy and Mona how cute a ribbon looks with a button in the center! I just love this look! Happy Saturday and Happy Crafting everyone!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

I'm back!!!!! Christmas crafting has begun!!!

Well I hope y'all hadn't given up on me!!! Today is Nov 12th--and Christmas will be here in the blink of an eye! I decided drastic measures needed to be taken to get my Christmas crafts going. That along with a little nudge from Julia ;). Thanks Julia!!!

I figured if I put up the folding table up in my daugthers room I could leave everything out and have a place to work!!!! (no I didn't kick her out of her room, she is away at college) I enlisted the help of 11 year old Gillian and we set out to cut a lot of top note dies to make some of these cute bags! We also used the Stampin' Up Curly set for the Christmas stamp. Gillian thinks that her Mom, Nonnie, Grandma, my mom and her teacher will really love them! I am sure she is right.
These were made with supplies I already had on hand. Not bad. But tomorrow night I get some crafting time with Julia my friend and Stampin' Up demonstrator and my crafty friend Mona. I am hoping to come home with some great ideas, so be sure to come back soon!

Monday, November 9, 2009

No crafts, but a good recipe for dinner

Still don't have my craft mojo going yet. But I did make a decent dinner tonight. I have a lot of recipes saved on This was one of them "Zesty Italian Crescent Casserole".
It was fairly easy, no expensive ingredients and I get a thumbs up from my taste testers. I liked it too! It was like a crescent lasagna. As Rachel would say "Yumm-O". Made a salad to go with, and there you have it, easy, inexpensive and tasty!
If you haven't checked out yet, I would highly suggest it. Lots of recipes to peruse.

Friday, November 6, 2009

I love every other Friday!

I am on a work schedule that allows me every other Friday off (and every weekend). Today is my Friday off! So I get to act like a stay at home mom and make pancakes for breakfast. I know I have said this before, but it is these little things in life that make it so worthwhile!
Now if I can muster up the energy I need to clean house and run errands, life would be Grand!!!!!
I have just had a lack of energy for the last couple of weeks. It sucks!!!! I haven't even crafted in over 2 weeks! What is up with that? So to you my few blog peeps, I apologize for the lack of creativity on my blog. I hope to come up with something soon! In the meantime enjoy your day, have a great weekend and stop by to visit again soon.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Halloween 2009

Halloween has come and gone like a whirlwind. But boy was it fun! My weekend started with a day of errands on Friday and a wedding at 4:30 in the afternoon.
Saturday it was on to prepping for a Halloween party Saturday night. Followed by some clean up and un decorating and a little rest today.
Let's start the photos with my cute boy Zach! He dressed up as a businessman Friday. He learned how to tie a Windsor knot on You Tube. Took him about an hour of practice, but he figured it out! I was so impressed! I guess I liked the costume too much and made too big a deal over it and embarrassed him. So he dressed as a zombie for Halloween instead of a businessman! I was so disappointed! He was so adorable in a hat and tie! I must say that having a 60's themed Halloween party makes for some very colorful photos!

See what I mean? Loved all the colors and great costumes!!! It was so groovy!

Lastly, a new use for a picture frame that I found while watching Sandra Lee Semi Homemade on the Food Network. She took a frame and put some Halloween scrapbooking paper under the glass and then used it for a serving dish. It worked great for my pretzel ham rollups!

I hope everyone had a Happy Halloween! Now looking forward to a Wonderful Thanksgiving!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Getting Ready for Christmas!

Yes I am already on the lookout for great Christmas ideas. I don't do very well following tutorials, however I saw this one over at Kay's Creations on Paper and had to give it a try. Kay has made some very cute Christmas boxes and was kind enough to set up this easy to follow tutorial for them. If you want to copy her creation exactly, you can purchase a kit for $1.00 per box plus shipping and handling. Seems pretty reasonable to me! I may purchase some kits because I love her color combinations and matching tags. Kay has many other great ideas at her blog. Definitely worth checking out!

This is my sample. They will get better as I go along. (I didn't have a scallop edge to use and this is not Christmas paper.) I look forward to making lots of boxes for Christmas to be filled with my homemade candy!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Retired Women Rock!!!!

My mom is 66 years old, soon to be 67. She and her friends Pam 58 and Wanda 57 planned a 9 mile hike today at Lake Chabot in Castro Valley CA. Since I was on vacation they invited me to tag along. Although I did ride my bike this weekend and did a yoga and ab workout on Comcast on demand yesterday I would say I am not in the best shape. My workouts are just not as consistent as they should be.
Nevertheless, I decided to take them up on the challenge and hoped I could keep up. Keeping in mind, that Wanda and Pam have played soccer, Wanda belongs to a rowing club, walks everyday and does these hikes a couple times a month. My mom and Pam walk and go to Curves several times a week. All 3 of them had also done this hike before.
Well I made it! (They did too of course) The uphill was a little rough and my feet and hips were a little sore after the hike. After lots of liquids, a motrin and some good food I am happy to say that I am feeling fine!
I am so inspired by these active women!!!! I hope that I can be as healthy and fit as they are when I am their age!!!!
Mom, Pam and Wanda you truly rock!!!!!

In case you were not aware there are many beautiful hiking trails in the Bay Area. There are weekly Wednesday hikes and you can get all the information at East Bay Regional Parks. I think the next time my son is on vacation we may try one of the Wednesday hikes.

I hope you are inspired by my mom and her friends to get out there and move!!!!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The last of the Halloween Crafts I promise!!!

Thought I was about done with Fall crafting, but my friend Julia sent me this link Hearprints . Yet another idea with the Stampin' Up Top Note die. This die cut has been the best crafting investment I have made so far! So just before I packed it all up and put my kitchen table back in order I had to try a few of these cute little bag/baskets. I have made them before, but a little differently.
I used the Top Note die from Stampin' Up to cut the scrapbook paper for these baskets. I adhered ribbon to a small white bag cut down for a handle. More scrapbook paper for the words and the scalloped circles and stickers from Target finish off my last project.

I hope you are all enjoying Fall, and looking forward to Halloween. (and then comes Thanksgiving and Christmas yikes!)

Now I have to start thinking of clever ideas for Christmas! It will be here before you know it!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

If I could just win the lotto!

I often dream of winning the lottery, especially when I am on vacation or on the weekends. Why you ask?? Well, let me begin by telling you that I was able to sleep in until 7:30 the last 2 days. I got up to a quiet house and had a cup of Constant Comment Tea and a Medi Fast Peanut Butter Bar! Yum! I then went for a nice long bike ride on my cool cruiser bike!!!! Then I was ready to face the day! Housework, yardwork, errands, my son's football game! All good!!!

If it had been a work day I would be up at 5:30 am at the latest and out the door at 6:30, no time for tea or a bike ride. I guess I just love my little bit of solitude in the mornings.

Secondly, I am on vacation this week because my son is on break. We are headed to Monterey to visit my daughter Val who is going to college there. We will hit the beach and aquarium. I love Monterey!!!!! Wish I was going to college there haha!!!!

Thursday I am off to the Bay Area for a 9 mile hike with my Mom and her friends. Hope I can keep up with them!

Friday John and I will be taking our kids to the San Francisco Zoo and Pier 39. It may not be a trip to Hawaii, but this is going to be a good week!!!! If I could only win the lottery I could have my tea and bike ride everyday! And make nice little mini trips like this whenever I wanted to!!! And of course there would be many trips to Hawaii and many other wonderful places!!!

A girls gotta dream!

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Still crazy for my Little Pumpkin Snowman!

OK, I know you are sick of this little guy! But I just can't help myself. I promise this will be the last time you see him this year. But I can't make any promises for next year ;)
I had some round coasters leftover from a Christmas project. I cut round circles out of scrapbooking paper, 2 for the front and 1 for the back. I made a loop out of black ribbon and hot glued to the back of the coaster, I then folded crepe paper like bunting all around the back of the circle. I covered it all with 1 piece of scrapbook paper cut in a circle. I like it!

Friday, October 9, 2009

Sew Girlie Monogrammed Scrapbook Giveaway!

Gotta love the crafty bloggers giveaways! I enter many, and have actually won once!
Here we have a new one from SewGirlie. It isn't even Halloween and I am having Christmas shopping ideas. I think the monogrammed items are so nice to give as gifts!!! Go to SewGirlie,
and check out all of the great items she has available!
Here are the entry instructions:
Good luck!!!