Everyone has a story to tell, here's mine sprinkled with some creative projects along the way.
Thank you for stopping by and I hope you come back again.

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

A look back on the year that was.......

today's the last day of 2008 and I can't help but look back at the year that we're saying goodbye to. Was is it all good? all bad?

The answer- definitely filled with stories!!!

I seriously felt blessed this year. I had some goals set up for myself, especially on the scrapbook side of my life, and it was fulfilled. More than I've expected. I'm still working in retail, something that I really didn't see myself being in for this long but things has to happen this way. I have also taken up much love for photography. Something that I'm so happy that it's finally working out for me. I have a couple of photos that is soon to be published. *wink*

Mitch turned the big 4-0 this year. He was able to accomplish a big thing with the scout by leading them to build canoes from scratch and taking those boats down the Colorado River in the summer. He's also found a new hobby in archery.

Amanda graduated High school this year. She successfully finished basic training in the army and will continue her military term in Texas at Fort Jackson.

Marcus stepped up into big kids' school this year. I'm so proud of him and I enjoy watching him take in all that Kindergarten class has to offer. He is really improving in all aspects and levels. Awesome dude!

Maddie was so fascinated with Princesses this year. There was no disney princess that she did not know and wanted a costume of. She too have grown so much. The only thing on the list to check of is....potty training. Like her big brother, she is taking her sweet time. Something that is somewhat frustrating Mommy sometimes.

I enjoyed this year and hope and pray that next year will have more stories to tell and of course to scrapbook!!!

Cheers to the new year!!!

Till next time,

Calendar ideas

So, pausing on the family posts for right now and showing some calendar ideas that you might like to do.....

I did the first two in January of this year. For more info, check this post.



and this one is a sneak peek of my 09 pocket calendar. I'm teasing you cause I have prepared it for a tutorial on the SocalScrap message board. I'll announce the date of the tutorial soon, but for now here's a peek.....

snow trip

One thing that I've nagged Mitch about this whole season was that we NEEDED to up to see some snow! We finally took our much awaited trip today.

I was so worried that bec. it was getting warm that there won't be anymore snow when we got up there but to my surprise, Wrightwood (in Highway2) was still covered with the pretty white powder. Here's some of my fave pics....

This angled shot was actually taken by Maddie. She wanted to be the photographer too.

We played in the snow, using our big tubes to slide down the hills and make our snow man. Fun stuff!!!

the kids didn't want to leave. Marcus even wanted to take home some snow only to be disappointed that the one that he put in the water canister melted.

It's very seldom I take a picture of this two together.

and finally me, just playing around.

Happy New Year everyone,

Till next time,

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Christmas has come and gone.....

and here's some pictures to show for it.....

We usually spend Christmas eve at my uncle's house in Glendora but bec. they were out of the country this season, we ended up staying home, something we've never really done before. It was quiet and I LIKED it. No stress. Although I did feel sad that I didn't get to spend it with my relatives.

Mitch came home early from work and so we rented a couple of videos. This is us in the afternoon of Christmas Eve, watching "The journey to the center of the earth", keeping warm with blankets and sweaters plus eating popcorn. What could be better?

then Maddie comes in my room looking like this......

and tells me that this is what a mom looks like! You can't tell but she had a few big bracelets on one arm too. Not for her mom that's for sure! I would never put this ensemble together. LOL.

Then that night we drove by a street in La Palma that had houses decorated with fun and colorful lights. I heard it from a friend at church and was so intrigued by it and when we got there I wasn't disappointed. It was great. The street was a little cul de sac off of the main street. All the houses seemed to have been competing with one another as to who had the best lights cause each of their front yards were litted up with all sorts of decorations and lights. Here's some of my favorite ones....

Then on Christmas day, the kids didn't wait for me to open their gifts hence no pictures of them opening up presents from Santa. They all enjoyed their presents though.

I made these reindeer cupcakes to bring to the Tolman's. I was assigned to bring the "kiddie" dessert.

Grandma Tolman's theme for her gifts this year to all the grandkids were sweaters. I thought that was fun! Here's her with little Maddie

then Marcus got a speed racer gift from one of the cousins. Since there's 24 (or 25 now?) grandkids, each cousin just gets one name to get a gift for. That way parents don't have to break the bank in order to give presents to family and also each kid gets to take home a toy.

My favorite part of the gift exchange is the adults version where in we put our gifts on the table worth $25-30 each, everyone gets a number and we take turns either opening one or stealing a gift from another person. We had a few steals this year, like this one that Mitch got to open but was stolen from him by his brother Paul....

Grandpa Tolman got to open this one up and it was the PERFECT gift for him cause he already has a bathroom in the house all themed with this....

All in all, this season was filled with lots of blessings, family time, great laughs and the reminder of the wonderful gift we've received- the birth of our Savior, Jesus the Christ.

Till next time,

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Well wadya know.....

we're right on schedule with things around here that I actually have time to update my blog. It's been a long time and it feels good to get back on the "bloggin" world.

I can really say that being overly organized has kept me sane this Holiday season. With the crazy hours at work (I usually don't get home till after midnight) I really thought that I won't have time to do anything but sleep but there's angels around me that are helping me. Sometimes I wonder where I get my energy to go through a 7 am- 2 am days. But then I think that there's dear people that are praying for me and that's why I'm getting through those days. Gotta love the power of prayer.

Anyways, I wanted to share two things with you today....
First is our family's baking tradition. Although I would rather give See's candies to family, friends and neighbors, gone are the days we can afford that so this year we're doing homemade gifts. Two Sundays ago, the kids and I made a bunch of cookies to take to our neighbors and Mitch's home teaching families. We we're making lots of messes but the Chocolate chip cookies with White chocolate, Oatmeal Chocolate chip cookies and Chocolate Crinkle cookies we're all worth it. Each and everyone of them was M M M good!!!

One of my goals this coming year is to be in front of the camera more often. So with this activity, I handed the camera to Mitch and asked him to be our "photographer". He did a great job and took shots of things that I wouldn't been able to, like this one of me putting cookies inside the oven to bake.

I didn't do anything fancy to wrap them up, I just stacked them, covered them up with wax paper and wrapped that in red tissue paper. Finished it all up with some ribbon and viola, our homemade gifts are done.

On Sunday, we handed our last batch of cookies (I froze them so they'd be good for a few weeks). We gave them out with our Christmas cards. Our cards was another thing I started to rethink about. I didn't realize how much stamps would cost for 60 cards. In the past years, we didn't have to eat that cost. So to cut down on this expense, I personally handed the cards to friends and family that was close by.

Another new baking experience this year was making candies. We usually decorate a gingerbread house but when I went to Michael's last week they were all out. Costco was out too. Bummer!!! Then Maddie saw this Wilton's candy decorating kit so we grabbed that instead. The kids took a little while to understand the concept of the candy making but after a few hiccups they were able to do em without sticking their fingers in the chocolate or getting all the chocolate on the floor and on their clothes.

We didn't do bad for our first time, don't you think?

The second think I wanted to "toot" about was this two issues arriving at my doorstep recently....

A special issue from Memory Maker's magazine. This issue was really good and timely since most of us think about organization in the closing and beginning of the year. They even have a "cosmo mag" type of quiz. It was fun to do and the result surprised me a little. And the best part of this issue for ME.....

is seeing this inside....

Yup my first ever pub with Memory Makers. Still gets me excited thinking about it. Oh and my dear friend Heidi's page was just on the opposite page from mine. How cool is that!!!

And then last night I got another package and this issue from Simple Scrapbooks was in it. It's the Jan/Feb 09 issue.

And on page 90 you will find this page.....

Christmas definitely came early this year for me.

Merry Christmas everyone,

***sorry the pictures are not even in sizes. I'm having problem uploading pics through blogger so some are from blogger and some are from photobucket.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

through the hustle and bustle.........

If you're one of my avid blog readers, I would like to apologize and give you a heads up. It's the Christmas season and besides being busy with my own Christmas traditions to do, I'm also very swamped with work. Being in the retail industry really can take a lot out of you during this season. I'm sorry. I have a lot of great ideas/projects/stories to share but I'm making the decision to sleep rather than type (laugh out loud). So if you'll bear with me till maybe after Christmas day, I promise I'll fill this blog with so much "stuff" that you'd want to come back everyday. *wink*

But till then, I'm taking a break.......

Happy Holidays,

Monday, December 1, 2008

Christmas on my mind

Well it's Dec. 1st and that means that the Christmas decorations are going up, I'm going to be seeing lots of houses lit up at night, madness at the malls and stores, lots of parties and unnecessary eating, making homemade Christmas cards and old and new traditions being completed. So in honor of all these great things I wanted to share some Christmas related scrappy stuff....... they're not new, don't have time for that right now but thought some of you would get a little sprinkle of inspiration from them.....

I posted some Christmas related projects last year complete with instructions and here's some of them. Click on the titles for more info.....

Paper Christmas Tree

Paper Wall hanger

Altered post in notes (great for gift giving)

and here's some Christmas themed layouts I did this year....

personalized the ribbons with some stamping.

Isn't she a cutie?!

looking forward to putting all these decorations out again soon.

Christmas won't be complete without a visit with Santa.

A page summarizing our "packed" December.

Thank you for looking and have a great day,

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Holiday Hoopla

Holiday Hooplah on the Coconut ScrapShop MB starts today (and runs through the 6th)!!! Don't miss out! There will be a different challenge posted everyday! Each challenge MUST be completed by Midnight Pacific time in order to qualify. The DT will vote on each challenge and keep a running tally of the scores! There will be fun prizes, and during the semi-finals (our top three) there will be one more challenge to determine the winner! That lucky gal will be the GDT for January!! So, are ya ready????!!!!!!! Come join us!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

so inspired...

One thing that I love about blogs is that inspirations abound and it's all FREE; One thing that I LOVE about blog side bars is that you can keep your favorites all in one place and that they're one click away when you're not doing anything or when you wanna ignore all the chaos around you and dive into some great inspirations.

Today was one of those days for me. I know I have a lot of stuff to do but I can't help but go through all my favorite blogs in my side bar (it on the left if you wanna check them out too) Most of them are of course scrappin blogs but I'm sure everyone can get a little something out of papercrafts.

Here's just some of my faves today......

I got this link for a cute advent calendar from the Crafty Crow blog. I found out about the crafty crow blog from my friend Tiffannie. She and I share the same love for cute crafts, especially ones that you can share with your kids.

She just always amazes me with her cards. I just love, love, love her creations. Love the layerings, the product choices and overall designs. If I can only have an ounce of her talent, I would be in heaven.

Another amazing scrapper. Right now I'm really impressed at designers that can put a lot of stuff on a page without making it too crazy busy and she's one of those that can pull it off so gracefully.

and finally got this list from Kathy Thompson's blog and thought I'd play along.....

Food for Thought!

Have you seen this list? It's making the blog rounds. I thought I'd play along. You 'bold' whatever you have done so far on the list. If you play along too I'd love to see your answers so let me know!

1. Started your own blog
2. Slept under the stars
3. Played in a band ....at school
4. Visited Hawaii
5. Watched a meteor shower
6. Given more than you can afford to charity
7. Been to Disneyland /world
8. Climbed a mountain
9. Held a praying mantis

10. Sang a solo
11. Bungee jumped
12. Visited Paris........someday!
13. Watched a lightning storm at sea
14. Taught yourself an art from scratch
15. Adopted a child
16. Had food poisoning
17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty
18. Grown your own vegetables.......one of the things that really brought so much joy to me, till stinking gofers spoiled it!

19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France
20. Slept on an overnight train..... coming home to cali from Oregon.
21. Had a pillow fight
22. Hitch hiked
23. Taken a sick day when you're not ill
24. Built a snow fort
25. Held a lamb
26. Gone skinny dipping
27. Run a Marathon.........one of the things in my bucket list
28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice
29. Seen a total eclipse
30. Watched a sunrise or sunset
31. Hit a home run
32. Been on a cruise
33. Seen Niagara Falls in person
34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors
35. Seen an Amish community
36. Taught yourself a new language.....tried Spanish, knows some but not enough to converse
37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied
38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person
39. Gone rock climbing
40. Seen Michelangelos David
41. Sung karaoke....one of my favorites
42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt......on a road trip to yellowstone with family in 2006
43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant
44. Visited Africa
45. Walked on a beach by moonlight
46. Been transported in an ambulance
47. Had your portrait painted
48. Gone deep sea fishing
49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person
50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris
51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling
52. Kissed in the rain
53. Played in the mud
54. Gone to a drive-in theater
55. Been in a movie....does home movies count???
56. Visited the Great Wall of China
57. Started a business
58. Taken a martial arts class
59. Visited Russia
60. Served at a soup kitchen
61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies.....more of ate them than sold them.
62. Gone whale watching
63. Got flowers for no reason
64. Donated blood, platelets or plasma
65. Gone sky diving

66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp
67. Bounced a check....thank goodness!!!
68. Flown in a helicopter
69. Saved a favorite childhood toy
70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial
71. Eaten Caviar

72. Pieced a quilt

73. Stood in Times Square

74. Toured the Everglades
75. Been fired from a job
76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London
77. Broken a bone
78. Been on a speeding motorcycle
79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person
80. Published a book
81. Visited the Vatican
82. Bought a brand new car
83. Walked in Jerusalem
84. Had your picture in the newspaper....school newspaper count???
85. Read the entire Bible....doing this right now
86. Visited the White House
87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
88. Had chickenpox
89. Saved someone's life
90. Sat on a jury
91. Met someone famous
92. Joined a book club
93. Lost a loved one
94. Had a baby

95. Seen the Alamo in person
96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake
97. Been involved in a law suit
98. Owned a cell phone
99. Been stung by a bee
100. Read an entire book in one day .....yup when I was soooo into Sweet Valley High School books.

So there, hope you got some inspiration from my faves and please share me yours. I'm always on a hunt for some great inspirations.

Have a great day,

Monday, November 24, 2008

a week in "my shoes" Part 2

ok so I've really slacked on sharing my "week" in pictures and words. I have been busy, lazy and just not inspired. But I did get it done. So here's the rest.....

Maddie and I had these for lunch. I know her plate seemed so bare compared to mine but she really eats a little and I'd rather that she finishes what's on her plate than put too much on there and just be a waste. She's my little cheese lover and this is pretty much what she eats everyday. I made myself a tune sandwich and treated myself with some cream cheese and chutney dip with crackers. Yum!

After picking up Marcus from school, we went to the library. I love the Cerritos Library, lots of great videos, books and cd's to borrow. The kids get to play on the computer at the library too.

I didn't have to work tonight so I was able to experiment a little in the kitchen and made this for dinner. Recipe is here.

I also had dishwashing duties tonight.

Brought Marcus to school and then Maddie and I went to our Mommy and me preschool class. She learned all about the Pilgrims and Indians today. Went home a little earlier than normal cause she started crying during snack time. After we got home, I asked her what was the matter and she said that one of her classmates laughed at her. I'm not sure about it, I didn't see it happen, but it sure did made her feel very sad. She still talks about the girl and what she "allegedly" did up to this day.

Here's a scene at my house after homework's done and I'm trying to get everything set before I have to leave for work.
Kids watching the library videos we got from yesterday. Today's video was Harry and the Purple Crayon.

While I'm making dinner and getting lunches for the next day all prepped. Today's dinner was foil pack taco chicken. Good stuff.

Today I stayed home and finished up a batch of Christmas cards that was ordered by my Aunt.

Here's my little sweetie pie helping me while I packed up the cards. Notice the "Belle" dress? Yes that's my little princess. There's no day that she doesn't wear her Princess dresses.


Today was a fun day. Spent the whole day here.

Every November, Knott's Berry Farm gives military people both active and retired a chance to get in the park for free. They can also bring another one for free and pay $15 for up to 6 people. It's definitely a great deal for us.

We went with some ex military friends like the Squires family and Ken Castro and his wife. I didn't realize that my camera had only one bar for the battery so I didn't get that much pictures. It didn't even lasted us till noon. I was sad about it but oh well. Here's my family waiting by the front gate of the park.

Mitch and Marcus really does have the "adventure" blood in them. This spinning roller coaster didn't even phased him. He said this was his favorite ride. He rode it twice with daddy.

Here's me and Maddie getting all excited with this kiddie ride. Yup that's me now, just going on on the little, not exciting rides.

I thought this picture was so cute. That's Adelyn Squires in the middle. The kids had lots of fun with the Squires' kids.

Today we went to church. It was our Stake conference and it didn't start till 10 am so I got an extra hour of sleep. Woohoo!

We were doing good with the time and even had a chance to get some photos again that might be used for our Christmas cards

but when we were backing out of our drive way, Mitch accidentally hit a car packed on the street. There was no damage in our car but we sure made a pretty big dent on the other car. We didn't know who's car was it so he had to knock on our neighbor's doors to find out. After two neighbors we still didn't find the owner of the car and we were soooo late for church so we just left a note and headed out. This incident bummed Mitch all day!

After church we went to my parent's house for some great Filipino food and watched Batman and Hellboy 2 on video.

Then at night we went back to the Stake center to attend a recognition activity for the Primary. Marcus got a certificate of participation for reading the Book of Mormon. We didn't finish the actual book but did finish all the BOM story book. We'll plan reading the Book of Mormon again next year and hopefully he'll finish that one before the next recognition night.

So that's it for me. My week has had it's share of events. I can't wait to make a mini album out of this experience.

Have a great day,