Monday, June 21, 2010

Father's Day gift shenanigans...

Michael left last week to do some CME courses in Minnesota (mostly, I think he got to golf, go to a Twins game, eat at our favorite restaurant, etc!)

And I had the brilliant idea of putting together a little photo shoot of the kids while he was gone. Have you ever wrangled six kids trying to get that perfect shot?? Perfection never happened but the out-takes were hilarious and there was at least one that was print worthy.

One four-year old melt down (he did NOT want to be the top of the pyramid), several grumpy stares off into space, 473 rabbit ears, and 3 tickle fights later (which turned into 17 tackles, 13 half-nelsons and at least 4 screaming children), I think that begging 23 times "please, PLEASE look at the camera and not up your brother's nose" paid off. Michael and my Dad loved their gifts!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Using up my stash...and Studio Calico's latest kit

Feeling some good mojo lately - after a very long dry spell, it is so good to get back to creating a little something every day!

A couple of layouts from last November's Jenni Bowlin kit:

Picture was from earlier this spring, as were the thoughts behind the layout. He turned 4 on Saturday!!

She's been telling us the number of days, hours, minutes til she turns 16 for about a year now. I remember so well doing the exact same thing. And WOW! When did she get so grown up and beautiful?

Loved how Lisa Dickinson used the rub on as patterned paper here (scroll down a bit) and used the same technique on this layout.

And one using Studio Calico's sold out April kit (Joyland). Inspired by a digital layout I saw on Shimelle Laine's blog, but I can't find it now to link it.

He's 11. I keep hoping it's a phase. And I think I've been saying that since he was about 6. By far, my most difficult child (though Mason may give him a run for his money) he's the only one who has ever shouted "I hate you." In fact, it happen in the last half hour. *sigh* I really, really needed a manual on how to deal with this child when he came along.

And three more from my latest box of Studio Calico goodies and their Partly Sunny kit. LOVING this one!!

Woohoo!! I got to scrap with pink! I buy all the pretty pink papers and never have any photos to use with them. My birthday breakfast...yes, I am spoiled! CASE'd this design from a recent Scrapbook Trends Magazine. No link since I'm still getting mine in hard copy.

Mason waited not so patiently through many rainy, cool spring days before his trike could come out and play. I used a little piece of wire attached to a rub on (October Afternoon) for the bike flag.

Memory is a favorite at our house. I actually had to paint the back of the blocks black when Max (and Mason, to some extent) started memorizing the wood grain and cheating! Mason started saying "thanks for that, Mom" every time I would turn up a piece he was looking for. Smart alec!

That's all folks!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Something old, something new, something borrowed....

something completely out of season!

Something old - I think I made the misted background and sun almost a year ago. The paper was buried under a pile on my desk with nothing to go on the page. I'm sure I had plans for it back when I first created it (and I usually pile stuff together for a page) but it was perfect for these photos from a family pool party last summer. Some really, really old Stampendous vinyl stickers, old Scenic Route (which is sadly no more,) a few older Cosmo Cricket rub ons and some gorgeous Lily Bee and Crate Paper patterned paper.

Something new - lots of fun new papers. Lush - the green, Sassafrass - the numbers and the yellow (brads made with my i-Topper) and Jillibean Soup - the red. Alphas by October Afternoon. Humor by moi after several comments from my husband and older children when dressing Max and Mason in matching clothes.

Something borrowed (and sorry, slightly crooked.) I CASEd this layout from the fabulous Layle Koncar. I think this new Basic Grey paper will end up being a favorite! Little Yellow Bicycle ruler sticker, Studio Calico cardstock stickers from their Anthology line, cork buttons from Pink Paislee and bamboo alpha from Making Memories.

And something completely out of season. I saw this picture in my drawer last night and just grabbed stuff from Halloween stash to play. Fancy Pants overlay, My Mind's Eye papers, black distress Stickles to decorate the pumpkin.

Off now to enjoy Mason's 4th birthday!!

Sunday, June 06, 2010

New layouts

When one lives in a house full of of boys, one will likely end up with a plethora of potty humor. And if one has a sense of humor, one might even photograph AND scrapbook these episodes. For a couple of months, the boys were obsessed with sticking stuff inside their clothes, mostly down their pants, and the new bouncy balls they got for Easter made for a pretty funny booty dance.

More Studio Calico - an older kit from last year but one of my favorites. There really isn't a yellow streak down the left side of the layout - I think the sun was shining behind where I had it propped up. And that exclusive SC paper? Made for the perfect booty paper when fussy cut ;)

Matt took the ACT on Saturday. He really only has 3 1/2 days left of school. And then he's a senior. A SENIOR!! 12th grade. I scheduled his senior pictures today with a good friend. Layouts about him lately have been slightly (ok, a lot!) nostalgic. I keep pulling older photos of him and I wonder where the time has gone...

No kit this time, but Studio Calico, October Afternoon and lovely Jillbean Soup goodies on this page.

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

What we're up to...

This one? He's going to be a SENIOR next year!! I'm freaking out, just a little. He got more involved in school this year - ran a little XCountry, swam (and I *think* he's going to be the swim team captain next year) and tried throwing shot and discus...I'm pretty sure that last one was so he could hang out with Julia even more.

And my girl? She is counting down the days til she turns 16. Holy cow - how did that happen?? I think her father may just chain her up in her room!

She also ran Xcountry (and kept training all winter) and went to Districts in track. She's running the 3200 and occasionally the mile, but the longer distance seems to be her forte. Still playing the flute, taking as many AP classes as she can fit in her schedule, MiaMaid class president - busy, busy girl. Can't wait til she can drive herself to all this busy-ness!

Micah - I'm having a hard time finding a picture of him. He tends to stay away from my camera, mostly in his room reading. My mom says he, of all the kids, reminds her most of me.

He turned 13 in March, bringing the total teenager count to three! He played soccer in the fall and is planning on it again this year. Despite a not-so-great band teacher, he is continuing with drums/percussion (and the teacher is leaving so I hope we get a great one to replace him!) and even has friends over occasionally to practice for their own little band.

The picture pretty much says it all. Life with Mitchell is always interesting. He played soccer, but doesn't want to anymore. Thinks football will be much better. He spends a lot of time playing Warhammer and Magic - I just wish he could garner the same interest for school! He sang in Swinging Singers for a semester, but decided that wasn't for him. At least he stuck with Rockin' Rhythms for the whole year (they play giant marimbas and they DO have an amazing teacher - I wish I could be in her class!)

And my sweet Max. He's just about to finish his kindergarten year. His teacher adores him and will be sad to let him move on!

Max was so excited to play soccer this year (finally 5!), go to school and this spring, Michael signed him up for t-ball. Despite almost half of his games being rained out, he has loved every minute of it!

And Mason? Somebody thought I needed excitement, thrills, conflict, back-talk and love to infinity in my old age. He keeps the house hopping, is always right (don't even try to tell him anything...even when he asks) and cannot wait to do all the thing the "big brothers" do.

Me being sick has been a little hard on Mason and I think a few of his more trying behaviors might have developed while his little self was trying to figure out what was going on. We're working on it ;)

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Hiatus over...

And I even have some creative endeavors to share!

It has been an interesting couple of months. More questions than answers. More symptoms from the meds but learning to deal with "the new normal." Frustration with physical stuff that affects my little joys in life (shaky hands make it hard to stamp, write, craft, sew, take non-blurry pics, etc.) But definitely appreciative, thankful, grateful for so much - family and friends who pray, think of me, bring dinner, entertain my children, send sweet notes; meds that will save my life despite their devilish side effects; a husband who has totally stepped up to the plate and has taken such good care of me; children who have taken this mostly in stride and (with a little prodding from Dad) step in to help out when I'm just too tired.

I'm still on 200mg of the cytoxin (chemo) and the prednisone, though we have reduced that by a 1/3 since Thursday. Labs two weeks ago finally showed the creatinine coming down, though white blood cell count was up a bit. Probably another four months to go at this level and then (hopefully!!) remission and maintenance level meds for a year or so.

Eyelashes are mostly gone. I definitely have the prednisone bloat...moon face and all. Hair is pretty thin, but not gone. Ears were pretty good for awhile, but seem to be clogged up again the last few days. Cough is gone, but nasal congestion just won't quit. Left foot feels like I'm walking on glass - doc says some of this may be permanent nerve damage. But most of the joint and muscle pain has decreased tremendously or is gone altogether - lower legs are the one exception, but some of that is due to the prednisone or so I've read. And the shakes - hands for sure, and sometimes legs. I *think* most of that is due to the prednisone - there are a lot of unknowns about this disease and everyone experiences such differences in symptoms, it is hard to know. I'm hopeful that that will decrease as I'm able to cut the dosage!!

And with that update, on to better things! I have finally got back to my scraproom - I've been very good at accumulating supplies (shopping!) but not so good at using them the past couple of months. I'm just going to chalk it up to retail therapy and move on. ;) But I scrapped three pages this weekend and absolutely loved the results, so I'm thinking the somewhat self-imposed hiatus is over.

Studio Calico Feb Kit, Baker's Dozen kit (sorry, sold out)

Studio Calico's May Kit (Granny's Cupboard, also sold out)