Monday, February 27, 2006


What scrapbook lines/products, etc. do you dislike?
It's not that I dislike them it's that I just can't see myself using them. The bright stuff in bold patterns. stuff like Zsiage (sorry Becky ;) ) Christina Cole, etc.

What is the hardest thing you have ever had to scrap?
I haven't done anything truely difficult yet. It was hard to be open in my journaling on a few pages, One More Time (nursing) and My Life, were the hardest.

What technique do you use more than anything else?
circles and curves. I love adding curves to my paper with a craft knife.

What is the smallest scrap of paper you save?
usually it's nothing smaller than about 6 square inches. if it's 12 inches long, I'll save down to a 2" strip.

Have you ever had any scrapbook related injuries?
I have cut myself a few times with my craft knife.

Finish this sentence, "If I wasn't a scrapbooker/stamper, I would spend my money on..."
well, I would spend more on photography. not that I spend that much on scrapbooking, but anyway. or maybe on decorating my house.

Give us your best storage or organizational idea.
I store my letter stickers and flat packaged rub ons in a Generations 12x12 expandable file box, sorted by color. it's cute and it works for everything.

You just won a week long scrapbooking cruise for 5. Who is going with you?
ummmmm. This is the hard one. I would need only four tickets or twenty. Me, Becky, Kristy, and Jyl. who can give me the best bribe for the last ticket? LOL! The twenty tickets would be quite the party with scrappers and squirrels and lots of fun. :)

When you received your first publication notification, who did you tell?
Steve. I called him immediately. calls are exciting. :)

I'm tagging:

Sunday, February 26, 2006


guess what's not done yet? Yup. the puzzle. Guess who's done 95% of it? yup. me. you guys are such good guessers.

Friday, February 24, 2006

Rock the Right Way

Last night as we were driving home from Grandma and Grandpa's, Matt was in a bit of a bad mood. It was late. So Steve asked him what kind of music he wanted.

"loud music!" by which he means hard rock. Steve starts fiddling with the presets and Matt screams his disgust with each one. Nothing is loud enough. We finally get to a station that's starting a song we were sure would make him happy. "I Love Rock and Roll." the first few licks were going, the beat was heavy. And then Pat Benetar started singing.

"noooooo!! it's got girls in it! ahhhhhhhhhhhhh!"

aparantly it's only real rock and roll if boys are singing. who knew?

I told steve he would be getting a Whitesnake cd for Easter.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Another of life's big questions

Have you ever noticed that whenever one of those housekeeping magazines has a list of easy housecleaning tips they always include the one about using your iron to get wax off a table cloth?

Which raises the question: Is wax on tablecloths a common problem? How many housewives daily dispair of ever getting the wax out of their cloth but are saved by the handy tip list in the magazine she picked up at the grocery store (when she went to buy milk and aparantly candles) in the hopes that the "68 fast housecleaning hints!" would save Grandmother's heirloom table cloth from the ravages of Candle Lite Black Cherry? Never in my eleven and a half years of housekeeping have I gotten wax on a table cloth. Not even when having Candle Light Suppers with the vicar and the Mr. Snow of the Snow Plant Nursury (who appears in his own commericals!) (PBS tv reference. you can all feel free to say: huh?)

Some days I look at those helpful hint lists and wonder if it's the same list they have been publishing for 40 years, just recycled every six months. Either that or I am missing out on some secret housewife sorority where instead of a secret handshake the password is "to get wax off your Grandmother's heirloom tablecloth place a clean cloth over the stain and iron using medium heat until the wax melts and is absorbed by the clean cloth."

So tell me, ladies, is the food good at the meetings? 'cause I'm all for parties my kids can't find.

Wise Words

Steve after watching Libby bounce from one thing to the next:

"It's like they have a trampoline in their brains."

RSS Feeds

anyone know a good tutorial for adding RSS feeds to your blog? i would also love to be able to use RSS feeds in other blogs. a link would be nice. ;)

(I tried googling it on my own and ended up with a bunch of pages that looked like English but were completely uniteligble.)

Monday, February 20, 2006

*banging head on desk*

I woke up with a stiff neck the other day. very stiff and sore. yucky. mommy's a grump and all that. Steve's diagonsis was a misalligned vertebrea right at shoulder height. He spent time this morning and this evening trying to get it to pop back in place. This means I have to relax while he jerks my head around. I've seen way too many action movies to relax when anyone starts jerking my head around. So he hooked me up to a portable electrical stimulation machine. So fun. I sat doing the puzzle while my neck and shoulder muscles contracted about once a second. My head and body jerked right in time to the contractions. This makes it hard to put a puzzle together because my hand jerks too. It helped, but I was still sore.

So then he goes back to the jerking my head around trick. "relax!" Jerk. "relax."

"how the heck am I supposed to relax when you are jerking me around?" I grabbed his head and did a violent jerk of my own.

"woah. you popped my neck."

"you're kidding." I jerked his head around again.

"oh man. that felt good. I've had a headache all day because of my neck."

I give up.

Childhood patience is not what it once was.

I know I was better than my kids at waiting for things. I was, huh Mom. (You need not answer to the negative. just say yes. let's maintain my perfect image here, thank you.)

Yesterday the kids found the one and only adult sized puzzle I have in this house. it's 1000 pieces and measures 18x26. Actually it wasn't a matter of them finding it so much as Joshua remembering it was there and going and looking for it. "can we do it mom? can we? please?"

This being a puzzle that will take us at least a week to put together, I said "later," because I'm all about procrastination, a trait which does not go down well with my children. Basically for the next two hours I heard about two hundred variations of the phrase: is it later yet? I finally used my brain and said "tomorrow."

So this morning, a school holiday morning, Joshua was knocking at our bedroom door at seven o'clock. "can we do the puzzle now, Mom?" Doing the puzzle means cleaning off the side table in the living room and opening it up to a square from it's console size. Since I was half awake on a morning when I had planned on (fantasized about) sleeping in, the answer was no. or more like "huh? ummbrgertemmmmm, nnooo. mmmmrggergmmm. not yet . . . leemmmt mmeem shleep."

Not to be deterred, Joshua went and woke up his sister. Of course, waking up Sarah means waking up the rest of the house. So Libby is screaming in her bed and I hear this baby cry in Doppler effect as she's carried to our room.
"Libby woke up." (thanks for the news report.)
"nuh uh. Joshua was trying to wake me up and he woke Libby up too." (classic tattling)
"so." (classic 7 year old response)
"I got her out of bed. Here." (joy.)
"mmmmhherrremmmm, shthansh." and I get to cuddle with a wiggly teddy bear for about ten minutes.

all the while I'm hearing the oldest two in the livingroom. screeches and bangs as they take it upon themselves to clean off the console table. I laid there feeling very grateful I was smart enough not to put anything breakable on that table. Then came the crashing. the banging. they had decided to open it up to the square all by themselves. sigh. me being me, I let them. Pretty soon we hear "that's not how it goes." "uh huh" "nuh uh" "uh huh" "it needs a plank" (the table also will take leaves so you can seat eight. it's a nice table.) so they both come and give a detailed report of their problem. I kick steve out of bed to take care of it. He gets it fixed and sets them on the brilliant task of getting breakfast ready. cereal. they can handle that.

Joshua is the field marshal. "you help or you don't eat!" "you're not the boss!" joy. we straighten it out by calling the kids to our room, still too lazy to get out of bed. then it begins again. "you clean off the table." "no, you." "you times a million." "you times a million + 1." "you times infiinty!" You know what's coming next. "you times infinity plus one!" Where do they learn these things? is it this behavior that is passed on from child to child on the playgrounds? is it something wired into their brains?

Eight in the morning and they have already had three fights. Not a good start to the day. For the sake of my sanity, I let them start the puzzle by nine.

they did stop fighting (mostly) which is good because they have tomorrow off too. I really don't have enough hooks in this house to string them all up by their toenails.

Saturday, February 18, 2006

paint me yellow and call me a banana

We watched War of the Worlds the other night. Not a good choice for me. I'm the type of person that sees freaky shapes in shadows and jumps at weird noises in the night on a regular basis.

Over all, I've made some pretty good choices about my movie viewing based on that. I watch 30 minutes of Signs and left the room. I turn people down when they offer to lend me their copies of horror or scary suspense movies. Nope, ain't doing it. I still regret being talked into watching Sixth Sense because I was tired of people making hints and feeling out of the loop. That movie kept me up at night for three days. I kept seeing movement out of the corner of my eye. I swear I lost about five years off my life.

So I hear about War of the Worlds, and not having a tv to see the previews with, I'm picturing a part that Wil Smith might have turned down. Spielburg goes back to his roots. Oh, I'm familiar with the story, I have been reading science fiction since I was 8. Wells is classic. But dang. seriously. dang. yes it was slow. yes it was tom cruise at his most wooden, but it was Spielburg at his most Spielburgiest. Only spielburg can be so slow and so emotionally draining at the same time. Dakota Fanning was fantastic, btw. did she need counseling after that? yikes.

Of course, Steve had to tease me. He found the movie suspenseful but not as scary as I did. Yes, I'm a wimp and a scaredy cat. Yes I took a sleeping pill before I went to bed and no it didn't work.

I'll always be the nerd at the slumber party who has to call her mom because everyone else wants to watch the Exorcist. sigh.

Thursday, February 16, 2006


I really have a boring life. It's sad when you can be consumed with convincing enough women to spend a total of $300 on shirts. Of course, I wouldn't have been consumed with it if I hadn't already had $275 of shirts bought. That last $25 can take a lot out of you. Dude, I need my credits! Thanks to an online friend I can relax and not be a pushy jerk anymore.

It's also a sign of a boring life when the big decision is whether or not to join the library lunchtime book club. (right now leaning to a yes. I have a friend who needs a babysitter once a week and she's begging me to get a life so she can return the favor.)

The big event for today: we're heading to my mom's again so I can watch the olympics. One of the major drawbacks of not getting decent tv reception (and choosing not to buy cable or dish) is that I don't get to watch the Olympics. Since they only happen ever other year, I have learned to deal with it. Luckily my mother knows how to work a VCR, otherwise I might break down and call Dish network. ;)

btw, Joshua's surprise was a card for both me and steve. it's a cute red construction paper card with a pop up, hand cut heart inside. he's a sweetie. :)

oh and funny story: we went to an awards ceremony for Joshua on Monday. It's an award involving all 13 grades (k too.) and over 50 kids done once a quarter. The newspaper failed to show so the superintendent grabbed Steve out of the audience because he was holding the biggest camera outfit. It was my camera and flash. He took the pictures for the school and I'll be dropping them off with a deep discount on the charge and a few buisness cards. sadly, he was the one taking all the pics and it's my buisness. I'm going to take advantage anyway.

ah the excitement that is my life. I'll bet you are all just getting a craving for movie theater popcorn reading it, aren't you?

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

He really should take me seriously

so on the ride home from the airport two weeks ago I showed Steve my hands. "see how nice and soft they are?" he's driving so he didn't look that close. "um, yeah. they're nice."

"wanna know why?"


"no! it's because I haven't washed dishes in five days. well, ok, lotion too."

then he laughed. He laughed! he did not take me seriously or believe me that not washing dishes could have anything to do with me having nice hands. How could a family of seven and no dishwasher not equal yucky hands? And now I sit here with cracked skin at the base of my right middle finger and dry yucky hands. See. I know what I'm talking about.

tsk, tsk. you would think he would know that after 12 years. (of knowing me. just 11 of marriage. don' t know why I feel the need to clarify that but I do.)

I still love the guy. He bought me a two pound box of chocolates for Valentines Day and that's gotta count for something, don't you think?

Monday, February 13, 2006

How long can he stay sweet?

Joshua made something for me at Primary yesterday. He hid it in his coat and all I saw was a flash of red. I saw it and asked him to take it out so he could buckle himself in the car properly. "no! it's for you for valentine's day and it's a surprise so you can't see it." well that I can understand.

at nap time he got out of bed because he said he lost a piece of my present and he needed to look for it. he was all worried that I would find it and it would spoil the surprise. I promised not to look. Luckily he found the missing piece in the car on the way to grandma's so all was right with the world. He gluesticked it on when we got home.

I'm looking forward to my surprise on Tuesday. I don't think my guy is going to be this sweet for much longer. The pre-teen and teen years are looming over him and I know there will come a point where he won't want me to kiss him goodnight anymore. I won't get surprise valentines from my boy. I don't keep all of their presents and hand made cards. I don't have space for it. This one I will keep. I think it might be the last valentine from Joshua. The last one is more precious than the first one.

Saturday, February 11, 2006

A story that does not mention my mother

Steve lost the can opener while I was in Vegas. (no you may not call him Hansel becauase he was Gretel's brother and that's just . . . ew!) He looked all over the house. He started opening his tuna with knives. (he has tuna daily so that's a lot of wear and tear on my cheap knives.)

I helped him look when I got home and we couldn't find it, so we finally broke down and bought a new one. It's not a Swing-a-way, but I could deal with that for the purpose of opening spagetti sauce cans and tuna. (I've mentioned how much a scrooge I am before. yes, my family doesn't even rate the store brand in jars. we buy the sauce in the #10 can because it's the cheapest.)

Thursday I watched my neighbor's two year old while she went to a doctor appointment. That kid was not here two minutes before he came up to me and handed me the missing can opener.

How the heck do toddlers do that?

Friday, February 10, 2006

Amy Maintains her Royal Title

My mother used to call me her Project Princess when I was a little girl. To be honest, I didn't like it. It always felt a bit condescending. Sadly, it fit. Wanna hear what's worse? It still fits. I still have fifteen projects up my sleeve and I never seem to finish any of them.

Case in point: I decided to redecorate my living room last summer. If you've been reading my blog for a while you've heard this story. Remember how all it needed done back in August was the picture shelves and the curtains and recovering the seats of my dining chairs? Guess what still needs to be done? Oh you are so good!

So I decided to have one of those "get my friends to buy something so I can get free stuff" parties. (which I hate, so I'm being a hypocrite having one, but I gues for the right product I'll bend my principles.) Since I'm having women in my house I figured it was time to at least recover the chairs and finish the curtains (which have been hanging for three months with only half of them having their cute contrasting edge treatment.) Since I scheduled the party two weeks ago, it's only right that I decided to tackle these projects today.

I bought a brand new staple gun last night and cut the fabric for the chairs yesterday, so I'm all set and ready to go. Brandishing the drill with confidence, I boldly remove the screws holding the seat to the chair. I decided to just throw the new fabric over the old because I'm basically lazy. I carefully center the seat on the fabric and place the staple gun for the first staple. Thwack! huh. only half in. I'll try again. Thwack! grrrrrr. same thing. Thwack! ARGHHHH!!! same thing. Thwack!!!!! I briefly contemplate how much damage I could do to the staple gun if I ran it over, but since I have the small van today, the staple gun is safe. Thwack! I reconsider my decision to never use swear words. Thwack!! Ok, where's the hammer?! At this point I give up on actually getting the staples in all the way and begin pounding them the rest of the way in with my husband's 24 oz framing hammer. Bit of over kill, but believe me, those staples deserved it!

So I got the first seat done and set it back on the chair (after it had been attatcked with a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser. My kids eat on these chairs, you remember.) It didn't fit. nope. not at all. No amount of pushing, finagling, shoving, or sitting would get that seat back where it belongs. I screwed down one side anyway.

On to the second seat, where I regain a bit of my sanity and cut the old fabric off so the seat will actually fit when I'm done. Thwack! Whack! thwack! whack! thwack! argh!!! Thwack! whack! ok. seat's done. I set it back on the chair, flip the whole thing over onto another chair and began screwing the seat back on. The screws won't go in. Joy. Somehow, I missed the original screw holes. How? I have no clue.

So that's why I'm here. I'm trying to decide if Murphy's been messing with my sewing machine today.

This, my friends, is why I never finish projects.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Mom, you should have named me Gretel

I had a dentist appt. this morning. The kids had theirs on Monday. I had to take everyone and poor Libby was total grump. So this morning I show up and the receptionist says "I think you left this here." and yes. it was Libby's milk cup. They had found it this morning.

I found my business cards. Well I should say Kristy found them. They were in her suitcase. My only excuse is that we both had navy blue luggage and we put them in the same corner of our hotel room.

I leave things places. Mom makes a box for me every once in a while of all the stuff we've strung around her house and forgotten. I go through life leaving trails. Not bread crumbs of course, that would be a waste of good bread, but stuff.

So now I can add to all the places I've left things: someone else's luggage and the dentist's office. oh and an airplane! we can't forget the sketchbook fiasco. joy.

My CHA claim to fame

I may not have gotten any mention on anyone else's blog, but I got a picture posted. LOL! Donna posted the picture I took of her and Claudia Helmuth on her blog (scroll down. ok, down more. ok, cute Donna and cute blond just above Donna the Poppet.) I think I did a pretty good job with it. Of course, Donna probably cropped it.

See I did meet someone at CHA and in the middle of my stalker moment, I helped Donna with hers. aren't I nice?

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

CHA: Tuesday

ok, HOF is out the door! I can concentrate on recounting my lovely week last week.

Last Tuesday was my Jackpot day. It was amazing.

I slept in and then got to walk the show with Michelle and Alissa. They were scouting for online kit clubs, so not only were they good company, I got freebies too ;) The first thing we did was stop by the Mimi booth. They were out of their cool badge holders, but Alissa got to tell the story of how the forklift driver ran over her brand new Mimi bag and left a six inch black greasy tire track across the front of it. Alissa was able to get it perfectly clean that night and she wanted to tell Mimi the story. They loved the story! Alissa is a good story teller so we laughed and they got her info so they could put it up as a testimonial on the site. "come see the Mimi bag that got run over!" I got free adhesive because I told Candice I made my purse with Xyron. (Mimi is a division of Therm-o-web.) ;)
Then we walked the show and saw some fun stuff. After Alissa and Michelle left, I walked past my new friend Michelle's booth. Her boss was there and we got visiting and things went very smoothly. Things look very good for me doing some project design work for the company. yea me!
That afternoon it was my turn to work the PBP booth. I had a ball and guess who came by? Stacy Julian! I got to say hi again and introduce her to our product.
Tuesday night was the designer dinner. I really didn't see a lot of people I recognized where I was sitting so I decided to get up and walk around a bit. When I got to the back room, I saw a table with a whole bunch of VIPs and there was Stacy looking at someone's portfolio they brought. I watched for a minute (mostly because I wanted the chance to say hi again. I'm a dork. I think we've covered that haven't we?) Stacy looked up, saw my badge and said, "Amy! I know you!" chills. it was that cool. (yes, dork. I said that.) I said hi and then "I saw you looking at her portfolio, how do I get that lucky?" she said "show it to me." so I booked it back to my table, grabbed it and booked it back. It was crowded. People don't get out of your way when you are going to visit with Stacy Julian. So anyway, Stacy was busy when I got back, but one of the editors asked to look at my portfolio. Next thing I know, my book's getting passed around the table. "oh, look at that!" "did you see this one?" "can I see it after you?" there were editors from Simple Scrapbooks and all at the table. they were all very complimentery. Then I got to show my album to Stacy. She was fabulous. She specifically requested that I submit four of the layouts in the book. it was so fantastic to talk to her and the other SS editors.
the rest of the dinner was a dream. I got to meet Kelli Noto, who's about as funny as all get out and takes lasagne on trips. (hi Kelli!) I got to see Michelle and her boss again. met a few other fun people. and then I won a door prize!

good day.

Monday, February 06, 2006


Remember how I decided to enter Hall of Fame? yeah, dumb idea. See I decided I'd do that before I completely read the rules and I missed that part where it said you couldn't enter any layout that had been posted online so I thought I had like four or five layouts done already so I'm thinking, yeah, I can do this. wrong. so wrong. Ever done ten fantastic layouts in three weeks? yeah, neither have I. but this sucker is getting mailed anyway. Those HOF judges need a good laugh anyway, right?

anyway, that's why the blog hasn't been updated. I've been slowly going insane. nine and a half done. nine scanned. eight printed. eight product lists done. all thoughts of recreating interactive elements on the print outs are right out the window because i'm not that insane.

tomorrow I will tell you all about last tuesday. Which was fantastic btw. Jackpot in Vegas.

Saturday, February 04, 2006

CHA: Monday

so I slept in Monday. It was nice. We go to breakfast. We ride the shuttle to the show. I get to walk around by myself for awhile and I went looking for Becky Thompson. Since she's like my friend and all. I wander because it took me two days to figure out the stupid map and besides you had to have three feet of floor space to open the sucker up. Anyway, I was lucky enough to stumble upon her in the Flair booth looking at the new product (cute) with the Big Picture Scrappbooking people. Yeah, Stacy Julian. So there's Becky just hanging out with Stacy. Stacy hears us chatting and turns around so she can be introduced to me. And of course I have a dork moment and manage "hi!" I couldn't even get out a "I love you!" or anything, although on reflection I love you may have just freaked her out and it's probably a good thing my brain went out to lunch at that moment.

So Becky and I made arrangements to see her later and I took off to see more stuff. In my wandering I walked past a stamp booth with some darling stamps and there was only one person in the booth and she wasn't busy at the moment so I stopped to say hi. We get chatting and I find that she's just totally sweet. I get up the guts to show off my portfolio and she loves it. so I leave my card and she invites me back when her boss is there. (hi Michelle!)

Monday was also my first day working the booth. I was pretty nervous because the only sales experience I have is convincing my children they would rather have cold cereal than pancakes for breakfast. (although I have to say, I"m pretty good at it. ;) ) It was so fun! I loved the booth sales! We had visitors from all over the globe, Maylasia (whose spelling I just butchered,) France, England, Germany, Holland, Brazil, and about every state you can think of. I loved chatting with them about their stores and helping them find the product that would sell for them.

Monday was also our Polar Bear Press dinner. we decided to eat at the Hilton in their Mexican restaurant. Aparantly when the show gets out everyone heads to the Hilton because we were in major foot traffic. Had another dork moment. At one point I turned around and saw that Donna Downey and Stacy Julian were about 30 feet behind us. So I kept having to turn around and look to see if they were still there. Everybody was laughing at me.

Dinner was a blast! I loved it. I tell you, the Polar Bear team is pretty dang fun. After dinner, Michelle and Alissa decided to rest. Kristy, Cari, and I talked Jason into driving us down the strip. We started at the Belagio and walked down to the Venetian. Pictures are in my photo blog. it was so interesting to see all the shopping that exists in Vegas. If they don't get you in the casino, they'll clean you out in their malls. $500 bags, $600 shoes, Ann Taylor is considered cheap. Definitely not my kind of shopping. The hotels were beautiful though and it would be fun to stay in one of them sometime with Steve.

Friday, February 03, 2006

CHA: Sunday

I woke up at 5:30 am in order to get to the airport on time. the kids all rode in their pjs. poor Steve. LOL!

I got into LV around 10:30 and discovered I had left my sketch book in the seat pocket on the plane. Such a dork moment. It has every scrapping idea I've had for the last six months plus a lot of personal info that I did not want anyone else seeing. Of course, I don't remember this until after I'm outside the gate area and I have to go to the lost luggage room to get a pass to get me back through security so I can run up to the gate and get my notebook. I get back and this takes me an extra half hour. Kristy was cool and waited for me even though she'd been sitting and waiting for me for an hour already.

We dropped our stuff off at the hotel and went straight to the convention center without even seeing our room. We stayed at the Stratosphere, btw. My first impression of the convention center was that it was huge. I would love to know how many square miles that sucker covers.

It took until nearly eight o'clock to finish setting up the booth. It looked cute though. (picture here) Kristy showed me my rub-ons which I hadn't gotten to see before that moment. It was so amazing. Dork moment number two: I cried.

we left and discovered that Michelle was at a different hotel and not rooming with us. sad, but she had a good hotel and a shower to herself. it worked out. None of us had eaten all day so Jason took us to a Quiznos. mmmmm toasty. Hit the spot. we crashed at the hotel.

isn't that a nice boring report? ;)

Home again, home again, jiggity jig

I had an amazing time at CHA. I'm exhasted. I will update later. I do want to say hi to everyone I met in Vegas. and post and say hi! LOL!! I didn't know I had so many lurkers. ;)

details later. if you want to know how my family survived their mom-less week, check out Steve's blog. I love that man.