Monday, August 27, 2007

Impromptu Vacation

Anton and I were feeling all stressed out and tired of the boring scene here at home so we decided to take a mini impromptu vacation. And since Andrea is about ready to have her baby and we've been meaning to visit them again it was decided on as the destination of choice. So on Wednesday we headed off.

We have a strange obsession when on roadtrips. We always have to stop and eat at Cracker Barrel. We even have the map that shows all the locations of all the Cracker Barrels across the whole country. Well, we just so happened to plan our departure time so that dinner time would fall at the exact same time we were passing a Cracker Barrel. How convenient!!

I don't know what I love so much about this place since the food is kindof greasy and not good for you at all, but it has served us well on many a trip. I think it's because they serve huge breakfasts all day long. Ella loves it because I let her eat pancakes for dinner, see:

Alex loved it because they had chairs just his size!!

We made it to Andrea's just in time to put the kids to bed and soon afterwards head that way ourselves.

Thursday was a hang around the house day, completely planned of course. They have a pool in the backyard and that was where we spent a good bit of our afternoon. While we were cleaning out the pool prior to our swim I met this little guy:

He lives in the pool lining. He posed and smiled and let me take all sorts of pictures of him. Andrea hates these guys. At night they climb up onto her windows and doors waiting for bugs to eat. Frogs to her are like spiders to me. Yuck.

Alex loved being at Andrea's house because he had so much space to run around in.

Anytime we made him come inside he cried. Poor guy. He's an outdoor boy for sure.

Friday was the day I was looking forward to since the planning of this trip. See I have another obsession besides Cracker Barrel, one much bigger, and that would be IKEA. Almost my entire house is furnished and decorated with things from IKEA. When we moved down here to the swamp the closest IKEA is 6 hours away. I've been going through serious withdrawal. Well, Andrea only lives 3 hours away from an IKEA and that's close enough for me!! So we tossed the kids in the car and headed off.

I don't know what it is about this big blue and yellow building that just sends pitter-patters through my heart but I love this place. When we lived in MD we'd go just for fun. This trip was all business, though. Alex was in desperate need of a dresser and I wanted some kids sized stuff for our play area and a chair for the living room. We were quite successful. Here is some of the haul in action:

The new chair and lamp with the existing IKEA furnishings.

Kid sized fun.

This is the dresser we got Alex:

It's much redder in real life. I love it.

After this exhausting but fully satisfying shopping experience we headed back towards Andrea's. We met up with them at a restaurant called Buffalo Wild Wings. Alex was being such a cutie while we waited forever for our food.

He has recently discovered his ears and nose and is constantly sticking his fingers in them. It was the highlight of our terrible dining experience.

But we made up for it when we got home by playing with the horses. Andrea has lots of horses.

This is me with my boyfriend Ozzie. He's the sissiest boy horse you will ever meet. He's always getting beat up and picked on, but I love him. He will let me pet him for hours. He's very sweet and if I were really brave maybe I'd ride him. But for now we are just friends on the ground.

Ella got to go for a ride. She loves riding the horses at Aunt Andrea's house.

Alex hopped on for a ride too.

Ella was giving all kinds of love to BoBo the pony. (I think this is so GROSS!!!!)

A cute one of Alex trying to get in the barn because we had the fence shut.

Our final day of vacation found us heading to a local water park. This was another reason we went to visit Andrea. Their water park is $5 per day while ours here is $20 a day. Big difference. We had so much fun and the kiddie play area was absolutely perfect for Ella. She loved it!

Look at the excitement!!

Anton had Alex duty most of the time. That entailed keeping Alex from drowning since he thinks he can swim. It's a tough job.

He's laughing here, I promise.

And here is our gracious hostess. She is due any day now and has more energy than I do not pregnant!! The 2 boys behind her are hers. The older one was in time out and the younger one was taunting him. I love how sweet and happy Andrea looks while her boys fight away in the background!! So funny!

We had lunch at the park and Alex ate an entire foot long hotdog by himself!! I've never seen him pack away food like that before. I'm in for trouble. Better start stocking the cupboards now!

Speaking of hotdogs, here is a funny story about my nephew.

This is Lane. (He wasn't too happy just then.) And on this particular day we had hot dogs for lunch also. Well, Lane is famous for eating food without swallowing. He just takes bites, chews and spits it out. Interesting nourishment methods. Probably not the most effective. But hey, he's 2. So on this day his hot dog was eaten in the usual manner. However, today he was having lunch with a pick-up truck too. Now what does one do with half eaten hot dogs? Well, this of course:

He packed them all up and let the truck driver take them away. (The dogs ate well that afternoon.) Too funny!!

Back to our vacation, after the water park we said our fairwells and headed back home. Ella commandeered my camera in the car. She took all sorts of pictures, but her best were her self-portraits:

She's getting good.

We got home to a broken air conditioner. It didn't get really bad until last night. It was a long hot night in our 90 degree home. Ugg. Luckily the repairman was able to come first thing this morning. Now we are basking in our 79 degree home. It has been running all day long to get it back down. I love AC.

So now that you've spent hours reading about my vacation I'd better stop. Have a great day!

Monday, August 20, 2007

My First 12x12 Templates!!

So I've put my first set of 12x12 templates up in the store at Scraphead. Check them out:

You can find them here. Let me know what you think!

I also finished another page for the ADSR. This one had to be an embarrassing moment. Here it is:

Journaling: So I’m at this party at the house of a friend from work and I see this really cute guy that I’d never met before. I made sure to strategically place myself in such a way as to finally meet him. We were chatting and getting along really well, I thought. He started to talk about how he sings and him and his brothers had just finished performing in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dream Coat. Well that so happens to be my favorite musical and the one I dream of being in, so of course I tell him this. I’m going on and on about how much I love that show and how I want to perform the part of the narrator some day. I was being quite passionate. Then all of a sudden the conversation went stale and ended rather quickly. I wondered what I had done. Did I say something wrong? Throughout our whole conversation we had never mentioned our names, so I went up to the friend who was throwing the party and asked who this mystery guy was. “Oh, he’s one of the Osmond brothers,” he calmly stated. Osmond?!? As in Donnie and Marie!! As in the entire family is famous for performing in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dream Coat?! No wonder he walked away! He must have thought I was trying to get on the inside. Weasel my way into a part in the show. Trying to kiss up to him and his talent. If only he had known that I had no idea who he really was! If only I hadn’t spoken so passionately about the show. I was so embarrassed about what he was probably thinking about me. He had the completely wrong idea about me. It is totally self-inflicted embarrassment, but I feel it all the same! He thinks I’m a crazy nut, and I was just trying to impress a cute guy.

You can see the credits here.


We had a really good weekend. On Saturday we went swimming again. Then that night we went and had dinner at Panera (one of our favorites) and then went and wandered through a book store, a craft store and a pet store. It was so much fun!

Sunday night we went over to our friends' house to make cookies and play games. We all talk so much, though, that by the time we started a game it was time to get the kids home to bed. But the cookies were really good. We made the Neiman Marcus ones. Yum.

Today I was so productive it was almost scary. I did the laundry. I took Ella to the library. I put my templates in the shop. I worked on crocheting an elephant for Alex (more about it when I finish). We went to Wal-mart and bought soooo much stuff to try and finish up our emergency evacuation kit. So expensive for something you hope to never have to use. We still have more to get too. I even made dinner and emptied the dishwasher and swept the kitchen and more! Whew! I had to spend my evening browsing the IKEA catalog to calm down. I love IKEA and we are thinking of visiting Andrea next week and she lives much closer to an IKEA than I do. We are plotting on ditching the guys at a water park and running off and spending money like crazy. There is so much stuff I want there it will be hard to control myself!!


An Ella funny. When she was brushing her teeth tonight she got water all over the mirror. I made her clean it up and while she was wiping down the mirror she said, "I was making fireworks!" How can you be mad when they are being so creative! So funny.

Anyways. enough rambling for one night. Tomorrow promises to not be quite as productive because I used up all my energy today! We'll see.

Thursday, August 16, 2007


So lately Andrea and I have been spending a lot of time chatting on Hello. We love sharing our layouts back and forth instantly and giving criticism (constructive of course). It lets us scrap without having to hold the phone on our shoulder. So if you happen to be a Hello user feel free to look me up! My screen name is travelgirlut.

I worked on more templates today. I think I'm almost to the point where I can package some up and get them in the store at Scraphead. So be looking for that to happen soon!

This evening we ventured out to a trail nearby for a longer bike ride. It ended up being a bit stop and go with things getting forgotten in the car and a flat tire. But overall it was a good time. Alex was a bit fussy for the last half. I think he was just hot and tired.

I've been researching Montessori schools today. I think it's definitely a method that appeals to me. The closest one to here is in town, a 40 minute drive, and it costs $3200 for one year. Too much. So I think I will try implementing some of the things myself here at home. We'll see. I have a lot of reading and research to do first!

Anton may be getting a week or two off of flying. He's been really stressed and it's affecting his work. So tomorrow he is meeting with a board to decide what will be best. We are hoping for 2 weeks off with one week of leave. We want to get out of here and visit Andrea before she has her baby. I think it will be good for all of us. We've all been a bit on edge.

But that's really all that's been going on here at the homefront. Have a great night! Sorry no pics!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

A Little Bit O'Scrappin

Between the craziness of babysitting 3 kids this morning and the insanity of life I managed to get a page done today.

Credits here.

I think it's funny that people keep commenting about how the title fits the page and so on and so on. But I don't think they are reading the footnote. That's what the asterisk is for. Don't people remember how to follow them? Well if you read the footnote you would see that it says "*Most of the time." So really, the page isn't as sweet as it appears to be. I like it. It reminds me of pages that ksharonk makes. Nice and simple, yet fun nonetheless.

In reference back to the babysitting this morning, it was a nightmare. I had been asked to watch someone's kids while their stuff got moved into the house. I was told 2 kids and I would get a call about how long, what time, etc. Well this morning I'm still sitting around in my pajamas when the doorbell rings. Great. And it's not 2 kids, it's 3!! They run in the house and immediately start destroying things and running around like crazies. Oh my. It was a long morning. Luckily they had arranged to have someone take them for the afternoon because I might have pulled my hair out by then. This just makes me really appreciate my calm, not picky eater, non-destructive children. What kid doesn't like peanut butter by the way! No I want square cheese, not string cheese. Nothing on my turkey sandwich. Goldfish, gross. Sigh.


Anton failed his flight again today. He will be redoing it tomorrow. If he fails again he'll have to go before a review I think. Hopefully we won't have to find out. At least he's not puking and failing at the same time.

Alex has started doing all sorts of sign language. It surprises me because we haven't really taught him any. Tonight I was singing "If You're Happy and you Know it" and on the verse where you shout Hooray! he was throwing his little chubby arms up in the air. So cute.

Ella counted backwards today from 10, just out of the blue. I really need to make it a point to do some focused learning (aka play) with her. She's got about half of her letters, but mixes up all the rest. She loves to write her name, though. She writes it everywhere. She loves to dance and twirl. She'll put on her pink tutu and grab my finger and spin and spin.

(Spur of the moment photo addition, sorry no pretty editing, and sorry for the immodesty!) She also has a life size Barbie that wears a pink tutu too and she'll dance all over the living room with her. It's so cute.

These are the reasons I scrapbook. So I can remember all these little things that I may not think to make note of, that I know I'll forget later on. So much fun!

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Fastest Computer in the South

Ok, so it's probably not the fastest, but having upgraded from 512MB of RAM to 1GB sure seems fast to me! I'd been wanting to upgrade for a long time and had just been waiting for the right deal. Finally one popped up where I could get the 1MB for $36 and I purchased away. I had to wait longer than I wanted because my computer takes DDR not DDR2 which is the more popular kind of RAM nowadays. But all came out well in the end. And now my computer is super fast. It leaves me needed something to do because I don't spend all my time waiting for files to open anymore!

We were really bad tonight and went out to dinner again. It was just too hot to even think about cooking at home. We went to this little Italian place I had been eyeing. It was a little hot and stuffy in there, but the yummy food totally made up for it. I got spaghetti with a white clam sauce, Anton got the Tour of Italy with lasagna, chicken parmigiana, and manicotti, and the kids shared a penne with marinara and a meatball. So good.

Then we headed over to Wal-mart to get me some sleeping drugs. I'm tired of not sleeping well and I'm tired all the time. I'd tried using melatonin, but I'd gotten too high of a dose. So this time I got a smaller dose, and also a regular sleeping drug. I'll try them both (separately of course) and see what I think. Hopefully there will be sweet dreams and energized days from all this!

I don't have any pictures or pages to show today. My mind has been so numb from lack of sleep that I can't think to create. I have been working on more templates, but still haven't decided how to package them up. But I hope to get some 12x12's in the store soon.

So I guess that's it for today! Have a good one!

Monday, August 13, 2007

New Products in the Scraphead Store!

So I have 2 new things up in the store at Scraphead. Well, actually, one is only partially mine, but I helped with it. So first up is a set of quick pages I created using Minna Rajala's In the Shade of the Woods kit.

You can find them here.

These were so fun to make! It's so different to make a page without having to take into account photos! It was a lot easier than a regular page!

And here is the second item for the day:

You can find them here.

I made an add-on set for these because I know when I did my vacation albums I needed more than 20 pages! So these are for those of you who take LOTS of photos on vacation.

I hope you like them!

In other scrapping news, I found a website where you can view Digital Scrapbooking Magazine for free. See theAugust September issue here. And the previous one here. This is on their own website, so it's not stolen or anything! Gotta love that!

You can also get a pack of 50 DVD's (perfect for backing up all your scrapping files) at Office Depot right now for $5!! You have to order them online but do in store pick-up. You won't see the $5 price until you change delivery to in-store pickup in your cart. Find the DVD+R's here and the DVD-R's here. This little deal was found on


On the home front, Anton had a puke free flight today!! That's a really good thing. The only bad side was he had to be on meds to make it happen. He can only do 3 more flights on the meds, then if he isn't better, we probably have to say goodbye to military aviation. We've accepted that and are ready for whatever might happen. We just don't know what we'll do if we do separate.

Other than that today was the usual blah day.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Amazing Digi Scrapping Race #8

Our challenge for this week was to create a LO about girl talk. Since Andrea and I are always talking on the phone we decided to make matching LO's. Here's what we did:
Andrea's is on the left and her credits are here. Mine is on the right and my credits are here.

It was a fun one to do.

Not much else went on today. Just a typical day! Have a great night!

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Swimming and Biking

Today was full of physical activity. This morning we went over to the pool and Anton and I took turns playing with the kids while the other swam laps. I haven't swum laps in ages and my body was letting me know. But I did manage to go for 30 minutes. I need to do it more often.

Later on Anton finally got our new baby bike seat attached, after having to make a run to the hardware store for a new part. So we loaded up the kids and went for a ride around the block. Since I was riding I couldn't exactly take pictures, but I did get this one of Alex before we left.

He's so cute in his little jungle animal bike helmet. He wasn't so sure about being on the back of a bike. But I don't think I would be either.

We did make a trip to the library today. This county has the most pathetic library system. I always go with hope of finding a good book, only to leave empty handed. Sigh. Today I was in the mood for a good magazine, but unless I wanted People or Newsweek I was out of luck. I've been spoiled by good libraries everywhere else I've lived.

So that pretty much covers the day. I've been working on more templates to put in the shop and haven't done any scrapping. Tomorrow I will though, so stay tuned!

Friday, August 10, 2007

The Fun Park

Tonight we decided to brave the heat and get out of the house. We decided to give an amusement park in town that we had heard about a try. It's more like a permanent carnival and also has a water park, but we didn't take our swim suits this time. Of course I took my camera to document the outing for all to see!

First I made Anton ride this nice spinny ride with Ella. It went really fast and neither of them liked it. I wonder why Anton didn't? Maybe because he had already gone and spun like a mad man earlier in the day? Yeah, we hadn't thought about that. Sorry Anton! So I got to do the rest of the rides.

Alex really wanted to ride the spinny ride. :(

Next up was the carrousel. This is Ella's absolute favorite ride of all time. She loves the horsies.

Alex really wanted to ride that one too. :(

Next up, driver's ed for Ella. She loved this ride too. Much slower than that other spinny ride.

Then we headed over to the little train they had to take a ride.

Ella loves trains too. If she wasn't so cute she wouldn't get away with half the stuff she does!!

Then the horsies again. (Or in this case a Zebra.) Did I mention she loves this ride?

Just to change things up we rode the ferris wheel next. I lost my lens cap on this one. Lucky a kind employee found it for me. Sheesh.

Alex really wanted to ride this one too.

Then I made the mistake of going on a spinny ride. I should have more compassion for Anton.

Oh, how badly Alex wanted to go on that ride. :(

Anton got creative with the photo shooting while Ella and I rode the Frog Hopper ride.

Then it was time for a break. We went inside and got ice cream. There were a few ice cream headaches involved. Most of them on my part.

Then once more out into the heat to catch a couple last rides before heading home.

Ella rode the horsies again. (She REALLY loves this ride.) See how her arm is up in the air? There was some soft background music playing and she was doing a very graceful interpretive dance. See that kid next to her? He was the only other kid on the ride and of course, had to pick the horse right next to Ella. Thanks kid, you ruined my pictures!!! Actually that happened alot. Almost every ride she went on any other kids that got on would sit right by her. Get out of my pictures!! :o)

Besides it being hot and all of the adults involved getting a little dizzy we had a pretty good time. We reall wish we had brought our swim suits because the water park looked really fun! That'll have to be saved for another day.

In scrapping news, Andrea finished my page for the ADSR swap. Here's what she did:

I arranged the photos and title and she did the rest. I love it. The colors are so fun!

So I'm pretty sure this post is now long enough. Have a great night!