Thursday, May 31, 2007

They say its like crack.

I knew about this Facebook thing a few months ago. Everyone said it was SOOOOOO addictive and the last thing I need is another internet addiction. So I avoided it for a few weeks and then finally went to check it out. I am proud to say, I was in and out in about 20 minutes - I found a few kids I used to teach and that was that. Back to regularly scheduled internet browsing.

Well, yesterday both my sister and my sister in law told me that they are on facebook and finding so many people they know - so I gave it another shot. Made a profile for myself, figured out how to do the searches right - and WOW. It *is* like crack. I got one reply from a friend request, and suddenly I'm hooked. One night browsing around and I've found about - fifty people, I guess? Maybe more?

I started a group for digiscrappers, since there doesn't seem to be one yet. If anyone's interested, its here:

So, yes. I know you don't have any more time to spend on the internet. But you will FIND time, I promise.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Shutterfly book is HERE!

I finally got my first Shutterfly album in the mail today - so exciting to see all these pages printed and bound in a nice little album! It reminded me of getting high school yearbooks - I just kept going through it over and over again and looking at every little detail on the pages. I already have a little list of things I'll do a bit differently next time - I am just so glad I finally have one done! Its going to motivate me to do a lot more now that I can actually hold a book in my hands and turn the pages! Its worth it!

I have that two page layout to upload - what a pain! Next time I am thinking of doing a two page layout, somebody smack me around really good until I come to my senses. They drive me crazy from beginning to end! I started this one weeks and weeks ago, and just couldn't get it finished. I was never happy with it and to tell the truth - I am still not 100% happy with it but I am *very* happy to finally have it all saved and done with. Anyway, here it is:

Well, that's small. Add that to the reasons I *must* remember not to do 2 page layouts anymore. They're a pain to upload and then they're too small. I will upload the individual pages to my gallery, but they will also look stupid when they are cut apart so - whatever!! Its done! YAY!!!
Its a drippy Tuesday after a drippy, wet and cold May long weekend. Which is how it is for every May long weekend for as long as I can remember, so its not like I am surprised. It could be bikini weather on Thursday before May long, and it will always ALWAYS be miserable for the weekend. Always. It is a rule.

The sun did peek out for about an hour and a half on Saturday, and the kids went nuts. All down the lake you could hear doors slamming as people came OUTSIDE after peering out at the dripping cold misery for days. The sun! It was OUT! The wind - there was none! The lake was calm!

Within minutes, we were bombarded with pleas from the children to GO TUBING. That is right, the same weekend where you pack your long underwear because its twice as likely to snow as to be sunny - the kids wanted to strip down to their swimsuits, go in the icy lake and get dragged behind a boat in a tube. We held them off for about an hour or so, saying that the lake was cold, saying that it would rain again soon - whatever to appease them. Finally we said - look, if you can get into your swimsuit and stand outside and not freeze, then ask us about tubing.

So, they did. And we said - Look, if you can go into the lake and you can stand the cold, then talk to us about tubing. But it was too late because Uncle Craig was itching to get his sea-doo running and the children had blocked off all of their pain/cold receptors and were running for their life jackets. Before I even had time to run to get my camera, they were flying around the lake on this massive three-seater thing. Let summer begin!!

M. finally asked to come in - not because she was cold, but because her LEGS were sore. Uh-huh.

I think I have some more work to do on that layout - so I won't post it in the gallery yet and you'll have to wait for the credits. I think its mostly Angela Spangler stuff and a Kimberly Geswein template.

True to form, it clouded over again and was cold and wet and rainy for the rest of the weekend - and it still is today. I got a LOT of scrapping done this weekend because it was perfect to just sit in the cabin and stare out the window at the rain. Not much else to do, except relax and do a few pages.

We also had a birthday party for M. - she wanted a 'surprise' birthday and though she did have her party at the pool last weekend, she was pouting that she didn't get to have a 'lake birthday' like she always does. So we didn't tell her she'd be getting a party this weekend, and she was surprised. It was just a little party with her cousins and our neighbor - and the girls decorated baseball caps with glitter fabric paint. They had a lot of fun!

Birthday girls!
As always, you can see nou-nou somewhere in the picture. He was a gift for her first birthday party at the lake - and here he his hanging out at her sixth birthday. She isn't the type to make a big dea about dragging her nou-nou with her everywhere so I don't notice him around until I see the pictures - he's always in the background somewhere.

Baseball caps hanging on the 'art' line:

I also finished a 2-page layout this weekend but I have to go through all the bother of splitting it in half to upload - so if you don't see it in a few days, bug me about it and I'll try to get it posted.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Another Mother's Day

Mother's day present for my MIL

We had a good weekend - and a good Mother's day, and as always my very first ever Mother's Day present also had her birthday this weekend. She's six years old now - how time flies!

M's birthday party was at a local pool with family and friends - the pool is indoor and very dark and humid and poor for pictures so I only have one picture of the actual pool party to share but I can assure you she had a WONDERFUL time. I bought a bunch of beach balls and swimming goggles for party favors - those went over well:

The girls on the ride home

The pool with a bunch of the beach balls, there are kids in there too, somewhere:

In other news, I am slowly losing my mind with this whole 'husband away for eight weeks' situation. Last week was okay but this week I have meetings every. single. night. of the week, and throw in some T-ball practices and a T-ball game for good measure. The kids will never get to bed before 9 pm, and 8 is their usual bedtime. Mornings are just fabulous when all the kids are tired and nobody wakes up on time. This morning we must have broke some land speed records - I woke up in a panic at 8:28 to a COMPLETELY quiet house - all the kids were still asleep!! By some miracle I got the two big girls up, dressed, breakfast, lunches packed, hair and teeth brushed, coats and shoes on and out to the van - the baby woke up just as we were ready to head out the door and that was perfect - just tossed her in the carseat and we were at school at 8:49. And to think some mornings they are ALL up at 7:30 and we very rarely get to school before 8:55, with the baby still in her pyjamas and last night's diaper, of course. Every morning when we get to school with no time to spare, I vow that we will get up earlier, try harder - we will make it. We will not be late anymore! We can do it!

But you know what, the truth is, it doesn't matter if we wake up earlier - time just gets wasted - things are lost and disorganized and kids are WHINY and I get stupid ideas like "Oh, maybe I should BRAID her hair this morning" and - the last ten minutes always takes fifteen minutes, and before I know it, we're late as usual.

I have no idea how it happens*** but BY FAR it is more effective to wake up late. We should do that every morning. Anyway, despite the fact that we had a great start this morning, and made cookies and bought groceries this afternoon - we still screwed the day up badly at around 5:30 when I forgot about T-ball practice completely so now my kids will have no clue what they are doing when we go to our first game tomorrow. And we managed to end the day with mayhem because I lost my mind temporarily and decided I could take all three children to a MEETING that started at their usual 8:00 bedtime. Because the meeting was at the neighbor's house and of course if my kids were already bathed and in their PJ's, they would sit quietly on the couch and watch TV while mom had a quick meeting - right??? What's an extra half hour past bedtime, if they are quietly watching TV on the neighbor's couch? Why not?

Do I even have to tell you how that ended? With me dragging three kids home - two completely wired on chocolate chip cookies and one screaming tired and miserable. They did not sit quietly on the neighbor's couch - oh no. They woke up the neighbor's kids - and the five of them ate cookies and had pillow fights and did everything BUT sit on the couch quietly and watch TV while we had a meeting in the kitchen, constantly interrupted by cookie requests and getting up to tone down the ruckus in the next room. And with all the interruptions, the 30 minute meeting dragged into an hour and a half meeting, and so I finally got the kids tucked into their own beds at just before ten. With any luck we'll all sleep in tomorrow and get to school on time!!!

*** that is a complete and total lie. I know exactly how it happens. If we only have a half hour to get to school, I don't make coffee, and the TV stays off.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Yay, Shutterfly! Boo, Photoshop!

At the end of April, Shutterfly sent me an email offering me a free 8x8 album if I bought something (anything) from them between April 23 and 27. That's an offer I can't refuse! And solved the problem of getting a bunch of my St. Louis pictures printed - everyone who went uploaded their photos there and so I could pick and choose from everyone else's pictures. I took plenty of my own but I fought with my little Nikon camera for half the trip. It hit the ground rather hard tonight (by accident!) at my nephew's birthday party so hopefully it will work better now.

I finally got the Shutterfly book done tonight about 40 minutes before the midnight deadline. I added a bunch of extra pages so with that and the shipping to Canada, the total for my 'free' album came to $12.00. I don't think that's bad at all to have almost 30 pages printed and hard-bound into a custom album. I can't WAIT for it to get here. Here's the preview if anyone's interested:

My FIRST photo book!

Sorry, Kimberly - I did end up editing a few of my layouts (read: all) - just little things that would have made me crazy if I would have printed them like that. Since I was in there re-sizing stuff to fit and moving things in from the edges a touch so they wouldn't get cut off - I adjusted some MEAN drop-shadows and changed a few elements that I would never use on a LO now. Minor stuff really but it took me ALL day. I was 99% done and previewed the book, and I noticed that *one* page had the journalling cropped off of the side. So I went back and moved the .jpeg file so it fit well on the template, re-saved and uploaded it again, but it was *still* cut off - so strange! I had to go back to the original layered file and change it but every time I tried to open the file in Photoshop, it would freeze up. Then Photoshop would take 20 minutes to shut itself down, and lock up the whole computer in the process. This went on for over an HOUR, and I was ready to rip out every hair on my head. I finally decided there was something wrong with the file on the laptop, so I had to dust off the old desktop and do it from there - slow and painful but it finally worked, but not before I uploaded that same file to Shutterfly 5 times trying to get it right.

Sorry for boring you with all that - but it was the kind of misery that *has* to be shared. On to better things - maybe a few pictures to share - oh, and speaking of misery - I'll try to upload a video of A. whining because her dad doesn't come home at 5:30 like he's supposed to. She usually can't stand any of us by 5 on any given day so she hangs on my legs and lays on the floor sobbing until her dad gets home. But the thing with him being at school is that he DOES NOT come home, so it goes on forever and ever until I manage to distract her with food, throw her in the tub and then put her to bed.

DH and both of his babies

Since that photo was taken (last week, I think) we've had a lot of rain and a little sunshine so now our lawn and the whole valley is a brilliant green. I can't believe how much it has changed in just a few days. The rain can stop any time now, the girls' t-ball practice was cancelled today and is rescheduled for tomorrow.

I finished another layout tonight - M. has a very well-loved bear called nou-nou, and he got pretty dirty at the lake last weekend. Usually nou-nou isn't supposed to play outside but she took him to the playground and he took a roll in the dirt and was very grey. M. was pretty upset so instead of putting him in the washer, we gave him a bubble bath in the sink. And we had ALL KINDS of help. You can see A. eating the bubbles in one of the pictures. When we had him all clean and towelled off, M. sat in the laundry room and waited for him to come out of the dryer. He's almost good as new again, now!

Tuesday, May 01, 2007


How could I forget that my baby learned a new word this weekend? You can guess what it is! I was taking her back home from the playground and she ran in the opposite direction - I told her to come back with me and she paused and said...... NO! and that felt good, so she said it again, more forcefully.

So here it is, another milestone. We notice first steps and first teeth and all that - but when they start to tell you "No!" - its a whole new ballgame!

But is it? I mean really - was she having any trouble communicating "NO!" with the whole shrieking routine - stomping in a circle, collapsing on the ground, shaking her head and feet and arms back and forth wildly? I suppose she's been communicating "No!" quite clearly for as long as I can remember. I don't think she's going to stop all that, by any means - its waaaaay too effective. But this is so much sassier. We're in trouble now, I know that for sure.