Friday, January 18, 2013

Rain, rain, go away....and take the flippin' mud with you!

Not sure about your little corner of the world, but down here in Hotlanta, things have been a hot was 70+ degrees last is at least our 947th day of cold & rain.  Seriously.

Normally, in January, we get less than an inch of rain for the month (that's about 2 1/2 squintometers for those of you Brits playing our game at home).  Today is January 17th - just a tad over half-way through - and we've had almost 4 1/2 inches (way more than a handful of squints for you limey types) and more yet to come.

There's mud in our driveway.  The lovely brick-red Georgia clay kind that they really should use as tattoo ink because nothing - no, not even your Aunt Maude's secret scrub - can get it out.  There's red mud all over the kids' shoes.  I think our dog used to be mostly white.  I think we really should look at investing in more sailing classes...maybe convert to the cubit system of measurement, gather a few more animals......anybody seen a rainbow lately?

The good news is that we've spent lots of inside time together.  The even better news is that we've all survived far.  Not totally sure what tomorrow holds for the muddy dog and our pale pink carpet.......but we'll see.

On a brighter note, one of my fave digi designers (and fave people), Liv Esteban has created a new set of awesome for you:
Liv.e Designs - Knock on Wood Papers
Ahhhh.....that's better.  Some sand, some surf, some SUN - oh, how I long to see the sun.  Breathe....summer is only 153 days away....that's about 11 fortnights for all Her Majesty's subjects....and about 152 many days for me today.

So - send warm & sunny thoughts....and I'll go see if I can round up some gopher wood.....

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Guess what????

Hello & Happy Wednesday!  Wonderful Wednesdays have taken on a whole new meaning for me.  Are you sitting down?  I have been asked to join the Samantha Walker Digi CT!  I know, right?  Believe me, I was far more surprised than you are now - and I am humbled and grateful for the opportunity to work such an awesome & wickedly funny lady.  Met Samantha at a SpragueFest and then got to really know her at a Carina Garner Design Workshop in SLC - I have never laughed so hard in my life!  Samantha is gorgeous - inside & out - incredibly artistic & talented, and one of the funnest people to hang out with ever.  FAAAAAaaaaaaaccccccCCCCCTTT.

So - without further delay - I bring you to the first of many monthly Samantha Walker Creative Crafters Team Blog Hop!  You should have arrived here from Daniela's Blog.....If this is your first stop, be sure to head over to Samantha Walker's blog to start at the beginning.

This month one lucky winner will receive the fabulous:

AND be sure to look extra closely at Step #4 to learn how you can get this FREE SVG and Silhouette Studio file:

To enter, just leave a comment on Samantha's blog during January 9th through January 13th. The winner will be announced on Samantha's Facebook page on Monday, January 14th. 

For additional entries:
1. Receive an additional entry for commenting on each of the other blogs in the blog hop.

2. Go here and follow Samantha Walker's blog; 

3. Follow her on Facebook;

4. Sign up for an e-mail subscription to Samantha's blog and you will automatically receive a link to a free SVG cutting file that you can download and use on your personal electronic cutter. If you are already a subscriber, just enter in your information in the secure form on Samantha's blog!  The free files will be e-mailed early next week!

To receive the additional entries and get the free files, mention in your comment on Samantha's blog that you have done so!  WOW, that is 17 chances to win! You wanna see some more of her incredible work?  The detail is just amazing.  One of her upcoming products is this luscious set of butterfly masks - I got a chance to play with them & this is what I made:

Thanks so much for stopping by!
Click on the image below to head over to

Happy Hopping!

How cool is this??  You get 17 chances to win and I get the honor of showcasing this amazing lady's fantabulous work - it's a win-win (I'm thinking Notre Dame was wishing they got this kind of deal on Monday night  ;)

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Enjoying extra time....

Ok - so I promised to keep it positive with the One Little Word stuff from now on - so no more snarkfest.  This past week has been so awesome - nothing on the schedule but time with some dear friends, Zane is getting better, and the kids and I have really enjoyed having Bennett home.

When he's on the road, life just feels a little more tense.  Maybe it's because I know that no matter what, I am flying solo when it comes to all things school/kids/activities/cooking/meals/shopping/bills, etc.  To all you single parents out there, hats off to you - at least I get (most) weekends off.

Been laying the groundwork to simplify life outside of home as well.  Trying to bring order to the various organizations that I serve so that they can float along with much less input from me.  It feels good.  Like a weight is slowly being lifted.  I know there's still a long way to go, but my hope is that, by this summer, my plate will be a LOT less full and my energies can be better focused on the few really important things rather than the frantic techno blasts (mostly done via the internet when normal people are sleeping) of emails, LO posts, website updates, and oh yeah, some document review.

Created a LO to express what it feels like to me:

Liv.e Designs Loopies Vol 3 - Here W Go Loopy Loo

Right now - I'm living in the blue, swirly part.  Slowly but surely, I hope to move into the calm and ordered tan part.  I so need some calm and quiet.  One goal is to maybe get back into yoga.

That bubble is quickly burst by visions of having my 7yo's toe in my nostril (he has a GIANT Mommy-crush right now and must be with me on me during every waking moment), my concentration smashed by the dulcet tones constant babble of my very-cute-and-very-verbose 8yo daughter that we really should have named Mynah, and the inevitable sibling war that erupts within 17 seconds of the 12yo entering any room occupied by either younger sibling.  Do you think that DFACS will mind if I duct tape them all together (with one piece strategically placed over Mynah's mouth) and call it their "Get-Along" outfit?

But....I digress.....back to deep breathing and closet clean-outs......

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

One little word.......order.

It is the current trend to pick "one little word" to be your theme/guide/goal for the year.  People have been doing this for a few years now and it's generated some really beautiful and thought-provoking blog posts, FB statuses (stati?), and truly artful scrapbook pages.

With my usual flair for procrastination, I am bringing up the rear of this train (they don't use cabooses (cabi?) any more) and I have - alert the media - chosen my word for 2013.

Order.  No - not as in "would you like fries with that" - which is the career path I threaten my children with if they slack off on their home school studies - but as in the calm serenity that magically appears when things are in their proper order.

The last few years have been more than insane around our house.  With travel schedules, learning opportunities (that's school lessons for those of you employed at the Golden Arches) to create/teach/do, taking on way too much for other people, family mess, the varied & numerous activities my kids are all in......I'm about to lose my ever-lovin' mind. Something must be done.

So as to avoid the Southern kiss of death - where references to you or yours are prefaced or softened by the obligatory "bless her heart" (which then grants the speaker carte blanche to trash your good name nine ways from Sunday) - my focus this year will be on order.

Order in the priorities that guide our daily/weekly/monthly lives - living for those inside our house first.  Family first.  This saying has caused a lot of grief for me over the years.  Everyone (and I do mean everyone) assumes that I am able to drop all my juggled cats and run to fix whatever problem/ailment they have or have created (often due to a lack of planning on their part).  This means that my kids' education has taken a hit, my house looks like an "after" picture for Sarajevo, and my relationships with my husband and kids has taken a hit.  No more.  Consider yourself notified. If I didn't marry you or give birth to you, your problems/ailments/work/duties/obligations will take a back seat to the aforementioned group.  Plan your life accordingly.

Order in the arrangement of our house - more free space, less stuff.  We are overwhelmingly blessed with people who love us enough to give us gifts.  Like most Americans, we need almost none of it.  So, if you are led to show your love to us in a way that involves "stuff, " allow me to let you off the hook.  What we need (and want) is babysitting so Bennett and I can finish that conversation we started 14 years ago.  Or maybe a nice dinner with your family - our place or yours - no matter.  We want the gift of you - not what you can buy.

Order in the way we live our lives.  Actually putting the BIG stuff first instead of living in a constant state of panic as we try and squeeze golf balls into spaces that only sand or water fits.  More time at home with each other.  Less time doing things because we feel like we "have" to.

Order in the serenity of my home.  No more crabby Bennett who (rightfully) is miffed over the chaos of the house - clutter, laundry, not as much cleaning as needed....  More time and energy spent on making our house a home.  Not a museum - feel free to eat pizza in the den - just know that you have to clean up your dinner mess (and maybe fold a load of towels or two) before anything else happens.

Forgive the snark-fest.  I promise that this OLW focus will be positive from this point on.  I just needed to get this stuff of my chest so that I can work towards order.  My sanity and my health depend on it. 

Hope that 2013 is filled with laughter, joy, and peace for you & yours.....and order.