Brady turned 10 on April 28th. He wanted to have a minecraft theme party. I had told him this would be his last big birthday party and I wanted to make it memorable for him because of that and also because he's had a hard last couple of years being picked on by classmates. So he invited 9 boys and only 6 could come. I turned the daycare room into a minecraft room. We had the boys over and we went to play lasertag first. The kids had a blast and well so did us adults!
my friend, Kim was there to help out...
and I had to get in on the fun too..
Then we went back to our place for pizza and cupcakes that I made to have some minecraft fun. I made minecraft targets and the boys used Nerf guns to shoot at them.
I did up a table of minecraft snacks
made minecraft cupcakes and placed them in plastic wineglasses and in the bottom I stuffed gummy worms. Kids loved them!
Brady opened his presents and got a lot of great things..
Then the boys played minecraft tournatments..
They slept over and stayed up way too late, but had tons of fun. Parents picked them all up by noon the next day.. I made these as loot bags
and filled them with a bunch of stuff including these minecraft keychains that I made
Brady loved everything and said it was the best birthday ever! Which is great because I won't be doing it again LOL It was a crazy amount of work and it was his last big party, so went out with a bang. Next year, the limit is two friends and none of this handmade crafty stuff.. mama needs a break!
I joined another swap this time for altered paperclips. Another first for me. I signed up for three categories...Flowers, Halloween and Beach/Summer theme. This swap took awhile for me to decide what I wanted to do. Flowers was pretty easy. But the Beach and Halloween ones, I wanted to be "different". I had all these little shells that I collected from my trip to Florida and also sand that I brought back from Honeymoon Island. I wanted to incorporate them into the Beach theme.
For the flowers, all I did was wrap ribbon around the paperclip, then glue a flower on top with a jewel in the middle. It looked like this..
For the Beach ones.. I took a piece of burlap and wrapped it around the top of the paperclip. I then adhered a Prima flower on top and also put a brad through the middle of the flower. I glued some sand on one of the petals and then glued a few seashells onto a petal. I found a pic on google saying "Keep calm and go to the beach" and printed it off. After cutting them up, I then used a toothpick as a pole and glued the sign on that and then glued the stick to the back of the flower. I was really happy with the way it turned out...
Next was the Halloween one... I had a great idea and hoped I could pull it off. I had a bunch of Tim Holtz mini bottles, so what I did was use colored embossing powders, orange, purple and black.. I filled each bottle with each of the colors. I then cut up chalkboard labels and put them on the mini bottles and wrote "Poison" on each one. I cut up small squares of cardstock and glued them on to the paperclip. Then I cut a couple of pieces of ribbon and adhered them to the back of the cardstock. I then glued the mini bottles onto the front of the cardstock and placed a witches hat on the top and voila! Here's my finished product...
I received a few private messages about these ones. They made me feel, finally more confident in my work. Doesn't mostly everyone feel that way? That our stuff isn't that good, wish I had done it this way, wish I was as good as "that" person.. I sure did. Sometimes you need a little validation on what you create to make you feel that it's really good, not just adequate. My husband compliments my creations all the time. He thinks I'm the world's greatest scrapper, but he's biased. It's all said out of love.. he has no clue, other than what I tell him, of the scrapping world. So to hear praise from the scrapping community was a thrill for me. It gave me that boost that I needed to feel more confident in my creations and not be scared to post them for all to see. And it's strange.. because I'm really confident in real life. I don't take crap from people, I'm outgoing, have no problem making friends or talking to strangers, not insecure anymore about my looks or what I drive or where I live or what I have or don't have.. being in your 40's is great... but when it came to scrapbooking, I was still that little girl that wanted to hear I was good enough or someone liked it. I felt after I received those words of praise from other scrappers, that I finally "made it".
I've been lucky enough to always have a scrap room. But after oogling for years some of peoples' craft spaces, I was so envious. There are some beautiful scrap rooms out there... my all time favorite was a shed that a husband had built for his wife and she turned it into a scrap studio. I loved, loved, loved it. I finally decided to take the time and create my own craft studio. Before Christmas, I chose the colors... a turqoise and lime green. Then I started looking for furniture... IKEA had pretty much everything I wanted. I joined a scrap organizing group on Facebook and saw the cutest craft cart.. in torqoise.. had to have it. That was my first purchase. Kev put it together that night and I actually slept with it by my bed for two nights before I filled it up. Best purchase ever and I highly recomend it. If I'm on the main floor and want to scrap, I fill up my little cart and take it down with me... I even take it to crops! So, anyways, back to my scrap room... I picked out the colors, bought the cart, now needed the extra motivation to get going on remodelling my scrap room. I went to my friend's Lori's new townhome and she had set up a craft space in her rec room. It had a few antiques, great organizational ideas and I loved it. That was it, I needed to start on my room... enough procrastination.
I emptied the room and then painted it. Three walls turqoise and one wall lime green. OMG, LOVE IT! Happy colors! Then I went to IKEA and bought a desk and two Expedit shelving units in TURQOISE! Found a great little shelf cabinet on sale at Target plus a distressed wood and glass storage container at Michaels. Also from Michaels, I picked up some ceramic pieces meant to look like antiques and an oversized alarm clock. Next, back to IKEA for a shelving unit for my tv and dvd player. Kev built the shelving units and I did the rest. Then the fun part and also the longest part.. putting everything in it's place. Here's the final pics...
I love my room. It is definitely my happy place. Sometimes, I just go in to take a breather, look around, smile and then walk out again. I'm so glad I finally got it done. I spend a lot of time in here. In the last few months, I've added some things and it gets messy when I'm creating. But it's all mine...
My next swap was a Twinchie swap. Never heard of them before I signed up for this... What's a twinchie you ask? Well, it's a 2x2 cardstock paper that you embelish to what the theme is. I signed up for three categories.. retro kitchen, favorite book, and Paris. The swap was hosted by my friend, April. We had to make 10 twinchies of each category. They were a lot of fun. I bought two different punches and neither were the right size .. ughh ended up using my cutter and creating my own. Here they are..
Favorite Book category - I picked The Help
and then Paris themed
These were a lot of fun to make and I was so excited to get back from everyone else. Everyone did a great job.
The very first swap I joined was called a Betty Swap. This swap was a Spa related theme. You had to come up with a favorite spa recipe, ie... bath bombs, chap stick, etc.. I did a Pumpkin Spice Body Scrub. So easy to make. We had to design recipe cards for all 24 members of the swap. Took me forever lol I ran out of a certain embellishment and ran to Michaels to get it... while gone, my bratty Basett Hound got up on the dining room table and chewed up four of my recipe cards. I literally cried when I saw the remnants on the floor when I got home. Had to quickly make the rest and get them off to the post office. Here they are..
We also were partnered up with another "Betty" to send a box filled with spa items. The deadline date was postponed a couple of times, so the shopping was never ending lol My partner was April aka CaribbeanGirl. We emailed back and forth and got to know each other quite well. Even though, I've never met this person, she has become one of my best friends. She lives in Arkansas and one day we will meet. She is such a great person and I love having her in my life... just wish she lived a lot closer! This is the card I made for her..
and this is the package I sent her...
I had a lot of fun in this swap. She sent me a ton of stuff too.. engraved towels, sleep mask, make up, nail polish, and a ton of spa items. It was a great first swap and the best part is, I made a friend for life.
I joined Two Peas nine years ago... I would look through the gallery, lurk on the general scrapping board, but I posted mostly to the NSBR (non scrap book related) board. I "met" tons of great ladies, received lot of advice, support, encouragement and had some good times. I was inspired perusing through the gallery and never thought I was as good as most of those ladies. So I never posted on the general scrapping board.
Last Christmas, on NSBR, a member hosted a Christmas Ornament Exchange. I signed up. I had to send an ornament that was local to another Pea as a secret sister. I went out and bought three ornaments... one of a blown glass polar bear, another of a Mountie and one that was hand crafted with a beautiful saying on it. I packaged them up pretty, filled the box with Canadian chocolate, candy and munchies and shipped it off with a card inside the box revealing who I was. A thread was kept going of the Peas who rec'd their ornaments, showing pictures and thanking their secret sister. The one I sent to, posted on the thread that she was at work, but her DH said the package arrived and that she would open it when she got home. Never heard from her. She never came back to the thread again to thank me or even send me a peamail. I spent $50 on her and paid $30 in shipping and she didn't have the courtesy to thank me or even to say she liked them or hated them. I was so disappointed!
The Secret Sister that had me was fantastic. She sent me two ornaments from her State of California. So cute, they screamed California and I LOVED it!
My secret sister was Jeanette, who hosts a lot of swaps on the Swap Board. She invited me over to join in... which I did and so glad that I did join up!
My friend, Lori, owns Love is in the Details. It's a scrapbook store, brick and mortar, but also an online store with her blog, gallery and a forum. Every year she hosts two big weekend crops. One in the spring and one in the fall. They are my favorite, favorite crops to go too. She does an amazing job of organizing the event! Her spring crop this year was in April. So I signed up, booked a room all to myself, and headed out. I was so excited to have a weekend away... and it just be ME! It was great to get away and to do something that I am so passionate about. I got there just in time for supper, which was pizza and was yummy! I set up my 8x8 table all to myself I might add, put my fluffy purple pillow on the chair and got settled in. Lori nicknamed me the "Diva of Scrapbooking"... I guess because of my fluffy pillow, hand lotion, chapstick, baby wipes, sanitizer, kleenux, chocolate, munchies, etc etc, that I had all set up. I come prepared! ;) :P
My first project was a doll form that I had bought from her store. I had plans to "dress it up". I worked on it Friday, Saturday and finally completed it on Sunday. I received tons of compliments about it from fellow scrappers.
After I finally finished it, I did up a Prima Doll stamp tag. I love the Prima doll stamps! They are so much fun. I was anxious to do one to test it out.
All in all, it was another awesome crop! Great people, great food and great times!! Can't wait for the fall one!
We decided to go to Florida for Christmas this year. And we decided, or more I decided, that we would drive there. I got the "huh?" when I said let's take the van! So I had to talk Mr. M into how fun it would be. See, I hate to fly, with a passion. Am scared shitless of it. In fact, I have to take drugs, a lot of drugs, to get me on a plane. Enough where I end up snoozing the whole time and walk around airports in a haze. I blame working for an aerospace company years ago. I did end up getting my way and we did drive the 32 hour trek to Florida. NEVER. EVER. AGAIN. It's not that the company was bad. It's not that my almost 10 year old kept asking the typical, "are we there yet?", cause he didn't. It's not that we got lost. I had mapped everything out and the directions were fantastic. It's because it was 32 HOURS. Way too long to be in a car. Way too long. We slept for two hour stints at rest stops along the way. Even slept for an hour in a McDonald's parking lot before we went in for breakfast. By the time we got to our destination, Winter Haven, Florida, we were walking like we were 90 years old. Once we checked in and got into our suite, we saw the view and it made it all worth it.
Then we realized... we have to drive home.
Our suite was nice. Yes, needed upgrading, but it was clean. The bathroom was very modern. Sitting on the porch overlooking the pool and the lake... priceless. Plus the porch was screened in.. added bonus. Though I did sit a lot outside on the patio and there were no bugs.
The temperature the whole week we were there was in the 70's. Perfect for me. I hate it when it gets super hot. Good enough for the B-man, as he could still swim.
The first full day there, we went to Legoland. It's right in Winter Haven, so it was about a 3 minute drive from where we were staying. The park was great and it was pretty cool to see all the displays made out of Lego. Even though I've never been interested in Lego, it was pretty amazing. The boy loved it. We were there the whole day. Crowds weren't too bad, though the food was mediocre and it was over priced. But then it's a theme park, so we were expecting that.
Some other fun pics from Legoland...
We went to Universal Orlando. I had really wanted to go to Bubba Gump's for lunch as I had been to that restaurant in Minneapolis years ago and remember liking it a lot. So as soon as we got into the park, we stopped for lunch. After waiting 20 minutes for our server to come and introduce herself and take our drink order, we weren't impressed. Another 15 minutes for her to come back and take our food order. Almost an hour after being seated, our lunch arrived. It was awful. I make better shrimp. None of the meals were good at all. We also paid a ridiculous amount of money for my want of seafood. Never again will we eat there.
After lunch, we headed into where the rides were. Line ups were crazy and I kicked myself for not buying an epress ride pass for each of us. The wait time for the Dispicable ride was over 2 hours. So we went across to the Transformer's ride after we hit the Transformer shop and B-man bought a couple of items. Got in line and waited... and waited...and finally get inside the building only to wait some more. The lines took you in a maze in different parts of the building. Just when you thought the line was done, you turned the corner, and there was more lines. We ended waiting almost 2 hours for that ride. Well worth it though. The 3D was amazing. I had my eyes closed after the first couple of minutes 'cause I don't like 3D and I laughed the whole time. Always happens on scary rides, I can't stop laughing. Which made my son start laughing too, though he was laughing AT me for having my eyes closed the whole time.
When the ride was done, the boys did the Men in Black ride, the Mummy ride (which they said was the scariest of them all), the Shrek ride and we all did the Disaster ride. It was more fun than scary.
We ended the day eating at Hard Rock Cafe and it was very good. Had an awesome server! He made it so much fun.
A few pics from the day...
All in all, was a great way to spend Christmas Eve.
When we got back to the suite that night, we decided to open our stockings. Because we had decided the trip was our present to all of us, I only bought stocking stuffers. They still got spoiled. Brady got some Mindcraft stuff, a movie, a calendar, chocolates, a couple of books, Diary of a Wimpy Kid journalling books, a rebound ball that lights up, and a spy watch. Kev got a book, a handyman magazine, chocolates and candy, and a few other little things. I received a decorating magazine, a magnet, a sparkly loufah, chocolate and candy etc.
I think we started a new tradition by doing the stockings on Christmas eve.
Day 3.. Christmas day...
We went to Epcot Center. My pic of all the theme parks. I had heard how great it was. So that's where we went. Yes, it was pretty. But it was like a glorified Folkarama and to me, not worth the money. Food was crazy epensive. The crowds were in the tens of thousands. We couldn't see the candlight processession nor the fireworks at the end of the night because there was too many people. And they were so rude. Wish we had gone to Sea World instead. Even though I could hardly take all the pictures I wanted, I was able to manage to get a few...
After much begging, bribing and then finally threatening... I was able to get Brady to take a pic with Ole St. Nic at the United Kingdom exhibit
Day 4.. Boxing Day and Day of Rest..
We could barely move. Kev and I were so stiff from walking non stop the last 3 days, we needed to rest. And rest we did. I sat on the porch, took a nap, the boys watched tv, played on the iphones and ds. We snacked on easy items all day.
Day 5.. Outlet Mall
In the cities in the States, we found that the freeways would get traffic jams. And we got stuck in a few. We would pass the time trying to guess the reason for the hold up.. accident, car died, etc.. But there was no reason. Absolutely none. For no reason at all, the traffic would get back logged and we would crawl or be sitting still. Then all of a sudden, traffic would start moving again. For. no. reason. It was the strangest thing ever.
We decided to hit up an Outlet Mall on day 5. Neither of us had ever been to one. If you're not a Canadian, outlet malls are huge to us. A lot of my friends have gone and I always hear the great finds and deals they got. So away we went. It was an outdoor mall and we loved it. First stop was the Coach store. Walked through the doors and security handed me an additional 30% off coupon, wooohooo! Ended up buying a great winter purse for an amazing deal. I was a happy girl! I absolutely love Coach purses! We browsed through some other stores and then we went to a Sunglasses store and Kev bought himself a pair of sunglasses for another great deal. We grabbed a quick bite to eat and then headed back to the condo.
Day 6...Trip to the Beach
We drove to just outside of Tampa to get to Honeymoon Beach. It was a place that was recommended by a message board I used to frequent quite a bit. It was beautiful. The sand was white, the water blue/green and lots of seashells. Hardly any people too. We strolled the Beach collecting seashells and Brady would wade through the water. I didn't let him go past his knees as I was afraid of sharks. Yep, I transferred my phobia unto him by not letting him. He wasn't scared at all, but mama was and that's all that mattered. Had good reason too, because there was a bit of a rock wall about 20 feet from shore where a man was fishing and we saw him pull in a baby hammerhead shark. See, I have reasons for my fears. We tried to take the ferry to a smaller island that was also recommended but it was closed by then. Had a late lunch on the boardwalk and was very disappointed with the seafish. Tasted like frozen breaded shrimp. I was so excited to be going to Florida because of my love for seafood and everywhere I had it, it was horrible. Seriously, Red Lobster does better. Guess I just wasn't hitting the right places. Anyways, was a great day at the Beach. Photos below...
Day 7... Time to head home
We got up early and loaded up the van. It was so sad to leave. We loved our time in Florida and swore we will be back in 3 years.
Kev planned the ride home and it took longer to get back. Plus he had us driving up to just outside Chicago and then heading west towards North Dakota. Bad move since everywhere was getting the worst snow storms of the decade. Grrr... was slow driving at times, especailly through Wisconsin, where the storm was the worst. Had to pull over for awhile. We got home safe and it was about 1:30 pm when we arrived. Again, super long road trip... we all had a nap and then had a late supper.
I am so glad we took this trip. Florida is so beautiful. We do plan to go back in three years to see the Everglades, Discovery Cove and NASA.
I've decided that this is the year to paint the interior of my home. Room by room. I started with my son's bedroom. He is a huge Jets fan and also is addicted to Mindcraft. So I wanted to incorporate a bit of both into his room. I chose a light blue, almost looking like "ice" and then the bottom part of his room in a smokey blue that is one of his favorite team's color. The middle strip I used chalkboard paint. I then bought him a few Mindcraft posters and put them up.
Above his bed is a picture of his late father. Brady lost his father when he was 2 to cancer. Even though I am remarried now and my husband has become an amazing father to my son, I want to keep a part of Brady's biological father in his life. Brady doesn't remember him at all. But he loves looking at his pictures. Hanging this picture above his bed lets him know that his father is always watching down on him and is his guardian angel.
I picked up a Jets blow up chair last Christmas for him. He also has a Jets pennant that hangs above his tv.
I still need to do some things. I'm looking for the right curtains. Also, the boy is growing non stop and needs a double bed now. There's a great one at IKEA we spotted. It's kind of like a bunk bed, but there's no extra bed on the bottom. We want to get him a futon to put underneath. That way gives seating yet can pull out for when he has a buddy sleepover.
So for now, here's the paint job. Will post more photos when the room is complete. I am happy with it and even more importantly, my son loves it.
Hi! Welcome to my first blog post. I am so excited to be starting this new adventure. You will find a bit of everything here.