Saturday, December 31, 2011


Happy New Year!!!

Here is hoping that 2012 is a better year than 2011.

Each year, many bloggers choose a word for the upcoming year. My word for 2011 was "REMEMBER." It was so important for me to try and remember all my many blessings. I think I did a good job.

This year, my word is "breathe."  I am one of those women who tends to overcommit. There is just so much I want to do and experience!!!  I tend to stretch myself too thin and don't take care of myself or my family.  In 2012, I'm going to try and slow down and BREATHE.  Take time to smell the roses, to listen to the wind in the trees, to look at the stars. To enjoy life!!!

I already had this wonderful bracelet from Horsefeathers that says "Blessed." 

I ordered a new plate for it that says "Breathe."  I think it will be a great reminder for me to carry around with me this year.

What is YOUR word?

Tuesday, December 20, 2011


Wishing you the merriest of Christmases and the Happiest of New Years. 

I will see you all in 2012!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Say It Every Day

I just found out that my friend J. was killed in a car accident yesterday evening.  She was a fairly new friend.  We met serving on the board of our local Woman's Club together.  I so appreciated her spirit and enthusiasm.  She was in the process of whipping out group into shape and a new era for our Club was dawning.  And the blink of an eye...our dear friend is gone.

This morning, I am trying to remember my last interaction with my friend.  Did I give her a hug? Did I wish her a very Merry Christmas?  Did I tell her how much her contributions are valued? I can't remember.

My father was killed in 1999 and I DO remember my last interaction with him. It wasn't good.

I just shared our grief over J.'s death with another friend over the phone. When we ended our phone call, I told her I loved her and she said that we need to do that more often. We don't know when our time here will end.  It is so important to take every opportunity to hug the people in our lives and tell them we value them and love them.  You don't ever know when it may be the last time you see someone.

Today, I encourage you to tell the people in your life how much they mean to you.

Say it every day.

A Long Winter's Nap

Friends, I have no reason to feel this tired.  I had a lovely weekend filled with holiday activities.  I took a half day off from work on Friday for Noodlebug's school party.  And I even got his homemade gifts finished for his classmates.  (photo to follow)  Saturday, I took Noodle to a puppet show at the library, helped my mother set up her Christmas tree and then headed to my friend's for a holiday get-together.  Sunday was another lovely holiday open house at the beautiful home of my friend Paula in Sonoma.  I was fighting a sick headache but I was determined I wasn't going to miss this event.  We were the first ones there and I settled myself in one of Paula's comfortable recliners next ot the fire with a plate full of food.  The chair was similar to this one:

The house began filling up with people. I'd say there were at least 50 people milling around as I sat snuggled into the chair in the middle of the room. I did not budge from that spot for almost two hours. In fact, I very nearly closed my eyes and went to sleep right there in the middle of the party. I know Paula would have forgiven me if I did that. I think social propriety was the only thing that kept me from it. I didn't mingle. I didn't chat. I was a lousy guest.  It seemed like my bum was glued to that chair.  I finally peeled myself out of the chair because we had to leave to make it to Noodle's Christmas pageant at church.  He did a good job in spite of the fact that his shepherd costume kept slipping off. 

I have three more days of work until my holiday begins.  I have no reason to feel this tired but I think the holidays have caught up with me.   I am so ready to settle myself for a long winter's nap. 

I am asking Santa for the gift of time this year.  We have downsized a lot this past year and have more much to get rid of.  I don't need any more "stuff" in my life.   I used to think gift cards were not very good gifts but I have changed my tune.  I would LOVE giftcards in the form of Starbucks, Michael's, our local movie theater or my favorite hangouts to go to with girlfriends.  Things that would enable me to continue my bad habits.  Actually, I love gift cards that enable me to spend quality time doing fun things with the people I love.  I don't often get to take Noodle to movies.  I don't spend NEAR enough time with my girlfriends.  I don't ever eat out with my husband. Sometimes, those things are just luxuries we can't afford. So now, instead of seeing giftcards as the lazy gift giver's gift, I see them as a lovely gift of time with those I love.  And we can all use more of that!

What is on YOUR list for Santa?

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Action Pack 8: Celebration!!!

The new ACTION PACK is here and it is bigger than ever!!!  80 pages of tutorials, crafts, recipes and more.  All for only $8. It's more like a book than an e-zine!!! 

In this Celebration issue…
■Recipes: cookies and holiday treats from around the world (9 recipes)

■Decorations: – ornaments, wreaths, banners and a nativity scene (8 projects)

■Games and gifts: – Wintry scenes to cut out and display, cards and gift tags, dress ups and games to make and play with (6 projects including printables)

Buy your copy here!!!

This e-zine is geared towards children ages 7-12 but many of the projects can be adapted for children of other ages.  There are so many wonderful things to do in this issue and it will be perfect our for holiday vacation.  I especially love a project where you make a red pillar mailbox out of an oatmeal can and make adorable wee little packages and mail to go in it.  And the recipes all look so delicious!!!  I think this may be the best Action Pack yet!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Holiday Fun

We had a lovely weekend.  We rode the Polar Express on Saturday which was just delightful.  Noodle got so excited when we arrived at the "North Pole" and Santa boarded the train.  Yes, I wore my jammies. I think I was the only adult to do so.  I decided a long time ago that I would no longer allow my fears about other people's opinions to prevent me from doing things that make me happy. Life is too short to worry about what other people think.

We also stopped by our local Festival of Trees.  I have been helping to develop this fundraiser and I think it turned out brilliantly.  A local photographer did some impromptu photo sessions for a $10 donation to the charity.  Here is one of my favorites:

And, in other news, something exciting happened last night. I actually sat down and sewed in my workroom!!!  I worked really hard on digging my way into my workroom and made enough space to actually sit down and work on some gifts for Noodle's class.  I am trying to make some of the adorable hot/cold packs I saw on Saltwater Kids.  The class party is on Friday so we'll see if I get it done!

Hope you are having a wonderful Monday!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Noodlebug Homemade Gift Redux--Lil Blue Boo

Every year I try to give Noodle a homemade gift for Christmas. This year, I have been feverishing working on embroidering Charlotte Lyons' adorable Maggie's Farm. It is becoming clear that I am just too slow.   It may have to be a birthday gift instead.


I am extremely late to the party but I have finally discovered Lil Blue Boo. Not only is Ashley amazingly creative but her wonderful spirit amazes me every day.  She makes me laugh and inspires me even as she battles cancer.  She makes me realize what a whiner I truly am.  Ashley recently posted a tutorial on a little box of peg dolls for boys and girls complete with printable.  I gathered the materials and finished painting the peg dolls a few days ago.  I think it is such a great idea that I have asked a cartoonist friend of mine to make me MORE backgrounds for the kit so I can make characters like the Three Little Pigs and Little Red Riding Hood.

(image source)

Find Ashley's wonderful BOYVILLE tutorial here.

Isn't the internet great?!!!

Friday, December 2, 2011

Matthew Mead and Status Update

I started reading HOLIDAY WITH MATTHEW MEAD a few issues ago when I found out about all the wonderful bloggers like Amy Powers that are featured in it. There is so much wonderful inspiration!  Plus, you should really check out Matthew Mead's blog.  Lots of great inspiration and wonderful giveaways!  Get your special keepsake expanded issue here.

I can't believe how quickly time is passing!!!  I keep getting sidetracked and haven't even really started Noodle's homemade gift. I have been working on my gift for my mother. As you know, I signed us up for the Brave Girls Club Mother/Daughter class.  My mother decided not to participate but I am still doing the class and working on things for her.  I will present them to her at Christmas.  I love these felt flowers over on Little Bit Funky and I'm going to try and make some of those as gifts as well.  How am I going to get all of this done?!!!

I hope you are all decking your halls and making merry!