Friday, January 29, 2010

just a little {slow}

Post-kids, that's feels like the story of my life....

My personal feeling is that with the birth of each child, moms should grow an extra arm {and perhaps some extra brains too}.  I think that would make all the difference.  Unfortunately God must not see it the same way, thus the perpetual runnin'-to-catch-up mode that I'm in.  I'm not at all suggesting that it's His fault...I'm just sayin'....

So, this birthday card here goes right along with that theme:


There's actually quite a bit of glitter on this {the hearts, the snail's shell and antennae, the grass blades, and even the button's got some glitter on it --but I can't take credit for that...it came that way...thanks, Cammie!}, though it was getting dark outside when I took this picture, so you really can't see it. ;(  

Oh, I used Card Patterns Sketch 48 --very fun sketch!

And last but not least, I also wanted to say thank you to so many of you for leaving me such sweet comments recently.  And to those of you who are new to subscribing or Following my blog, Welcome!  I don't post every day {more like once or twice a week...the title of this post is actually very fitting for me -lol}, but whenever you do visit, I hope you'll enjoy what you find here.  ;)

Wishing you all a wonderful weekend!

Thanks so much for the visit, and I hope you'll stop by again soon. Until then, many blessings to you!

Economy Boosters (just doin' my part -lol!):

Cardstock:  White Daisy (CTMH)

Patterned Paper:  "Golden Gate Bridge," "Sausalito," and "The Presidio" from Phoebe collection (BasicGrey)

Stamps:  Savor the Journey -January 2010 KOM (Unity)

Ink:  VersaFine Black Onyx (Tsukineko), White Daisy pigment ink , Heavenly Blue (CTMH)

Other:  Classic Circle, Classic and Scallop Rectangle dies (Spellbinders), Cuttlebug, Floral Fantasy embossing folder (Provo Craft), Circle Cutter (Fiskars), Prismacolor pencils (Sanford), odorless mineral spirits (Mona Lisa), blending stumps (Alvin), sponge (CTMH), satin ribbon (May Arts), embroidery floss (DMC), button (gift from Carolyn King), pink and melon Spica glitter pens (Too Marker), sewing machine, thread, glue dots, foam mounting tape

Thursday, January 28, 2010

50 {more} reasons...

to make me someone get teary-eyed....

All my older kids somehow know just how to get to me, and over the years I've even framed some of their efforts.  Even my non-sentimental older son just penned out his "50 Out of Infinity Reasons [he loves me]" --some made me laugh, some were just plain fun, and some, well, you know {yes, I needed to wipe my eyes}.  More than they know, it does my mama's heart good.

Well, my oldest daughter {who's not a scrapbooker...yet} spent months making this special "50" album for my birthday, and I can't help but cry each time I look at it {and I really don't like to cry, but I sure miss my family and I just can't stop myself sometimes}.  Monica presented it to me when she was here at Christmas, and I think she'd be very pleased if I shared some of her heart-and-soul-turned-gift with you here.  I don't normally share too many pics online, but for this, I'm happy to make an exception. 

There were 50 photos in all, each with their own quote, which seemed to be chosen carefully and specifically for each picture.  I've selected just a handful of them to share with you...you'll notice some aren't the most flattering photos to lay before you, but we can't always know in advance which of our Kodak moments will be the ones to be frozen in time, can we?  Darn! ;)

And after the 50 photos were 50 words she thought helped to describe me. 

In a word, this album is AMAZING.  I couldn't love it more if she'd used every Spellbinder die, Copic color, my favorite BasicGrey or My Mind's Eye papers available.  I know how much of herself she poured into this, especially having to do it in her spare time {she works very long hours and also goes to school part time}, and I know she was very proud of the end result.  I hope you'll enjoy it too.  ;)


The first page:


The pics she chose aren't in chronological order {you can see how much she's grown up in some of them --I love that!}...this one was taken right before we moved from CA {summer 2006}:

Not positive, but I'm thinkin' it was right before we decorated our Christmas tree in 2004 {**Laura, that's the patchwork quilted Christmas tree skirt I made**}:

This one was right before one of her senior dances {spring 2005} --we were having a lot of too much fun taking those pictures and were caught in the act sharing an inside joke:

This one is all about how we always placed a birthday balloon at the foot of the kids' beds while they slept so that in the morning when they woke up, it was the first thing they saw on their birthday.  It's a tradition we only get to continue with our youngest two now, but it's nice to know that it's a tradition the kids remember and enjoyed.  I've tried to figure out a way to carry it on even though we're so far away, but it just wouldn't be the same. ;(

This one was taken after we arrived in CA for a visit {June 2007}:

This was taken on our way to the airport after Monica had come for a visit {Sept. 2006} --notice the outbreak of red, puffy eyes {goodbyes are so dang tough...even today!}:

This was right before Monica's senior prom {spring 2005} --loved that dress...we even found shoes to match:

I'm thinkin' Christmas 2004?:

This is when Monica came to visit us just a month or so after we moved from CA {Sept. 2006}...and a day or two before we had the red, puffy eyes incident on the way to the airport, shown above {yeah, we start the waterworks early sometimes, as shown here}:

And I had to throw in this last one for ya...circa August 1995....just for the giggles.  Not too long after we began dating, my now-husband, his daughter, my three kiddos, and I visited my parents while they were vacationing in CO.  This was taken at a breathtaking scenic overlook in Wolf Creek Pass, and I have NO idea why I'm apparently clueless that Monica's teetering soooo close to the edge of that cliff {yep, I was always a wonderful mom...every minute!}.  And check out my hair and those shorts...yeah, I was never too into style. lol  

And puttin' the picture with the quote, I'm now wonderin' just what 'mother' was supposed to be aware of here...perhaps that the peace sign Monica was flashin' at my then-boyfriend was a message that there would be peace in our worlds if we blended our families in marriage?  lol  Little did she know....peace came, all right, but at a high price and several years later.  Long story.  You'd best not ask. ;)

And here's where Monica got all wordy on me -lol {though it is kinda nice to know what she thinks of me}:

Did you see that last one..."intelligent"?? lol  Guess she doesn't know me as well as she thinks...must've been runnin' outta nice words. ;)  Just kiddin'...we all know where her smart genes came from!  ;P

Thanks so much, Monica. Your labor of love will always be dear to my heart {and close at hand}, though nothing could come close to the love I have for you.

Well, I hope you ladies enjoyed this glimpse into my relationship with my sweet Monica...cuz I'm pretty much done with all the personal, teary-eyed, mushy stuff.  Yeah, real done.

My next post WILL be a card. ;)

Thanks so much for the visit, and I hope you'll stop by again soon. Until then, many blessings to you!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

{50} reasons...

...why this is going to be such a LONG post --

In case you don't frequent some of the best blogs in Blogland {but I haven't the slightest idea why you wouldn't}, or if by chance you were busy this weekend and not blogging, then you may have missed a very special occasion...well, it was for me anyway. ;) 

What?  You haven't a clue as to what I'm referring to?

Well, then, let me take this opportunity for a little show and tell...once I figure out where to begin, that is.  I've been thinking about this for a few days now and still don't know how to go about it in a way that would convey my heartfelt appreciation to all those involved, so I guess I'll just start at the beginning....

Do you remember several months back when I threw my hubby a little surprise 50th birthday party?   Well, even if you don't, apparently my mom did...and it got her little wheels a-turnin' until she came up with one heckuva plan.  A really BIG plan.  And one that got my oldest daughter and one of my very best friends involved as well.  Oh, and even Chloe {my 9-YO DD} was in on it and she never said a word...until last week when she started leaving little black packages on my nightstand and my hubby said he had nothing to do with it...and even then, she did a fairly good job of keeping the BIG secret.   

So they conspired for months, and I was totally oblivious.  They devised a plan to surprise me on my 50th {Yeah, I know.  50.  I wasn't planning to mention it, but now that it's been pretty much advertised all over Blogland, I don't think it would do me any good to deny it}.  And so it went.  My first-ever surprise party. 

Don't get me wrong, it was wonderful and probably the sweetest thing anyone has ever done for me.  I had an absolute blast {once I got over the fact that my mom and daughter had asked people...some of whom I only know from blogging...to join in the "fun" AND that my age was now plastered all over the Internet -lol}. 

I laughed.
I cried {a lot}.
I opened cards galore and untold gifts containing "50" somethings {and they're still arriving even as of today!}.
AND there was a blog hop held in my honor that day {which, I'm told, was all June's idea!}.  

I was totally spoiled and completely overwhelmed by it all.  And despite having the majority of my family and friends over 1000 miles away, I truly believe this was the very best birthday I've ever had.  I don't think I've ever felt more loved...even by those who really don't "know" me all that well...and I NEVER imagined turning 50 could be even half that much fun. ;P

I received a lot of yummy edible '50s' --things like:

50 homemade chocolate chip cookies
50 pieces of gum
50 Jordan Almonds
50 pieces of my beloved Dove Dark Chocolate (x3! --triple yum!)
50 pieces of See's Candy
50 Tootsie Rolls (x2!)
50 Smarties
50 York Peppermint Patties
50 M&Ms (x3!)
50 Circus Animal Cookies
50 bags of microwave popcorn

If I don't have a LOT of help in eating those things, I'll be gaining about 50 pounds and spending a lot of time at the dentist office!

And I received a lot of pretty crafting '50s' too:

50 hand-crocheted black flowers
50 pieces of textured cardstock
50 jewel pins
50 buttons (x3!)
50 flowers (x3!)
50 black brads

And then there were the assorted fun and creative '50s':
50 recipe cards
50 black glittery candles
50 purple fun-shaped paper clips
50 hugs, kisses, and thoughts
50 bobbie pins {from my former hairdresser -lol!}
50 black pony beads
50 quarters
50 $1 bills
50 VISA bucks
{Do you see some fun shopping in my future?  ;D}

I'm sure I've forgotten some things {I'm officially old now, so that's to be expected}. 
Over the past week, I did take quite a few pics of the very clever and creative cards and gifts I received, but I honestly don't think this post could handle it if I tried to share them all with you.  So I'll just show you the beautiful handmade goodness that can't be found on the blog hop {but you really should check that out too so you can see what those talented ladies came up with!}:

















My mom decorated {and filled} this paint can.  Even with  that big ol' number on it, it's still so cute. ;)



This cute little tin is the birthday card my mom made me.  Each page is a treasure in itself.

Here's the first two pages:

The third and fourth pages:

And the last two pages:

There are beautiful tags inside each of the page's pocket, but because most of them are heartfelt and personalized, I think I'll just say that you had to be there.  Truly priceless.  More than words can say.  Thanks so much, Mom...you're a treasure beyond compare.

These are the crocheted flowers that Jeanne {from the blog hop} made me --they're gorgeous!  Several different shapes and styles too!  {She embossed the gift bag too!}  Thanks, Jeanne!  ;)


And this beautiful gable box is from my friend Kathy {who still doesn't have a blog}:

Check out that flower --isn't it gorgeous?!?!  She made it herself --tea-dyed the ribbon and all!

And here's the beautiful card she made to go with it {if you're reading this...thanks, Kathy!}:


This super cute li'l 'stinker' is from Stacy {from the blog hop} --thanks so much, Stacy!


You'll see the adorable sheep card on her blog, but not this cute little gift box and note card which was decorated and filled with black brads by Elise {also from the blog hop} --thanks, Elise!:


This darling Bee-day card is from June {yep, the originator of the blog hop} --thanks, June!


This next card is from one of my dear friends in CA...she doesn't craft {or blog} but is very creative and loves any and all things vintage.  She put this together with a movie theme, and then finished it all off with a huge galvanized bucket of microwave popcorn. lol  Isn't that just so creative?!?! 


And then this LAST card is from Chloe...she thought she was being cute. lol


Yes, I'm most blessed!  And not just because of all the wonderful cards and gifts I received, but because I'm surrounded by such loving, kind, generous, and talented people...in real life and through the wonder of the Internet.  Even if they made me cry...or called me old...this week. ;)

Well, {now that my laptop has been repaired --yay!!} I'll be back soon to share a card with you, but for now I'll leave you with the links of those participating in the blog hop on Sunday just in case you want to go back in time and live part of my special day --I know you'll love their blogs!  Be sure to leave those wonderful, sweet ladies some love too...they sure deserve it.  Don't you agree that stampers are the BEST?!  ;)

June Houck - http://simplyelegantpapercrafts.blogspot.com/2010/01/today-is-christi-millikens-50th.html

Jeanne Tomshack - http://tomshack.blogspot.com/2010/01/happy-birthday-christi.html

Barb Walker - http://thebuzzfromqueenb.blogspot.com/2010/01/happy-birthday-christi.html

Stacy - http://impressionsofaribbonaddict.blogspot.com/2010/01/happy-birthday-christi.html

Christi Thorsen - http://cici510.blogspot.com/2010/01/christis-nifty-fifty-birthday-blog-hop.html

Carolyn King - http://myblogbycammie.blogspot.com/2010/01/happy-birthday-christi.html

Marie Isom - http://isomcre8tions.blogspot.com/2010/01/blog-hop-for-christi.html

Mary Ellen Harrison - http://abeautifulscrapbook.blogspot.com/2010/01/christis-50th-birthday.html

Sarah Masteller - http://sarahspapertray.blogspot.com/2010/01/christis-nifty-fifty-birthday-hop.html

Susan Roberts - http://rainy.blogs.splitcoaststampers.com/2010/01/24/nifty-fifty-birthday-hop/

Jeanette Fincher - http://jcfincher.blogspot.com/2010/01/happy-50th-christi.html

Elise Durenberger - http://mamacowcreations.blogspot.com/2010/01/happy-birthday-christi.html

Whew!  I hope I didn't forget too much of what I wanted to share.  And if you managed to hang in there with me to the end, thank you for letting me show you a glimpse of the wonderful and so very amazing day/week I had.

Thank you SOOOO much, Mom and Monica, for making my birthday so very special and memorable...short of your coming for another visit, it couldn't have been better if you'd tried.  I love you!  And a very special thanks to all you ladies who contributed to this amazing day...even if you felt you had no choice -lol.  I love you too!   **Oh, and please don't think I'm ungrateful if you don't receive a thank-you card from me right away...those of you who know me even a little know that I'm almost always a little behind in my getting cards out.  But they will come.  I promise. ;) **  

Thanks so much for the visit, and I hope you'll stop by again soon. Until then, many blessings to you!




Monday, January 18, 2010

what {love} looks like

Hello again!  How was your Monday?

Oh, while I have your attention, I just wanted to thank you ladies who take the time to leave me such sweet comments...even if I haven't had time to make it by your blog in a little while.  It really brightens my day.  Not that it's why you visit, but it's just a little bonus for me.  I just wanted to let you know how much I appreciate you.  ;)

SO...one of the families from church was moving right after Christmas and everyone was asked to send them off with a card.  It took me the better part of a day {and right before Christmas too --Ouch!}, but here's what I came up with:

I realize it looks a little strange {sorta like they're wearing 'Jason' masks...but not nearly as creepy!}, but I didn't think it would be right to post their photo {which I copied from our church directory...not exactly the perfect colors for the card, but close enough I thought} here on my blog, so I took the liberty of brushing out their faces in my Photoshop program.  I'll bet you'd never guess I don't know how to use it, would you? lol 

Yes, it would've looked much nicer if I could've figured out how to just blur them or at least paint the brushed 'bright spots' with some neutral color, but nooooo.  Truth be told, I was actually just happy that I figured out how to do what I did without taking too much time! lol  {I don't like reading manuals very much...though I really need to conquer that obstacle.}


This card was SO heavy, I had trouble getting it to stand up.  Can you tell?


So my remedy was to add a few layers to the inside to distribute the weight more evenly.  And this card had some heft to it, believe me.  The patterned papers were nice, thick cardstock {which I love}, and all of the dimensional tape and embellishments added even more weight.  I'm just glad I didn't have to mail it! ;P



Well, that's it for me tonight.  I hope your week is off to a good start...and if you live in Southern California, I hope you're staying warm and DRY.

Thanks so much for the visit, and I hope you'll stop by again soon. Until then, many blessings to you!

Economy Boosters (just doin' my part -lol!):

Cardstock:  Colonial White, Desert Sand (CTMH)

Patterned Paper:  Penny Lane collection Tiny Dancer "Chasse" Notebook Doodles, Free Bird "Love" (My Mind's Eye)

Stamp:  Fact of Love (Unity Stamp Company)

Ink:  Desert Sand, Autumn Terracotta (CTMH), Chai (Papertrey Ink)

Other:  Labels Three (Spellbinders), Cuttlebug (Provo Craft), crochet trim (JoAnn), Cloud twill tape (Martha Stewart), buttons (WalMart, Papertrey Ink), decorative pins (Heidi Grace), teeny tiny drop of blood that I accidentally left after sticking myself one too many times with the decorative pins...hopefully the recipients never notice it (MINE), Scallop Diamond border punch (EK Success), embroidery floss (DMC), sponge (CTMH), Crafter's Pick 'The Ultimate' adhesive (API), foam mounting tape, sewing machine, thread

Thursday, January 14, 2010

{help} for Haiti

I'm so glad you're here! 

This isn't quite the post I thought I'd be making today, but it turns out it's much more valuable and important than any piece of artwork I could share. 

By now I'm sure all of you know about the tragic earthquake that hit Haiti yesterday.  And aside from sending up prayers, I know not everyone is able to help...financially speaking. 

But did you know that Ree (aka The Pioneer Woman) is offering up a give-a-way of TWO very generous donations to the Haiti relief effort charity of the winners' choice...plus more?!?!  

Please click over to her blog NOW, leave a quick comment, and feel good knowing that you're doing a little something to help support those devastated by the recent earthquake in Haiti. 

Here's the link:  http://thepioneerwoman.com/blog/2010/01/a_different_kind_of_giveaway

And then pass this info along...the more people who leave comments, the more generous (and helpful) Ree's offer becomes. 

Thanks so much for the visit, and I hope you'll stop by again soon. Until then, many blessings to you!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

happy birthday {mom}

Are you surprised to see me back? ;)  I've been thinking about you this past month.  A lot.  But I told myself that I needed to get my life in order --meaning, spending less time on the computer and spending more time on the things I should be doing-- and so that's what I've been up to.  And stamping some too.  ;D 

Oh, and with the new year I now have a strict budget to adhere to.  It's gonna be a challenge for me, but I think I'm up to it.  Wow.  That doesn't sound too encouraging...think...I better change that to I AM up to it.  Just don't go trying to entice me to buy every new stamp set and product that comes out on the market when showing me your beautiful artwork, okay??  I know, I think I'm gonna need blinders!  Seriously!

Did you all have a nice Christmas?  We did!  We were doubly blessed this year --not only did my parents come up to spend the holiday with us {and we girls got to enjoy our semi-annual trip to our closest Michael's concept store and Archiver's!}, but my oldest son and older daughter and her boyfriend made the long trip here as well!  I was in heaven.  And, yes, I cried like a baby when they had to leave to go back home. ;(  Our house seems so quiet and lonely now...makes me really miss those crazy times with all the kids comin' and goin' all the time and having dinners with everyone gathered around the table.  It was such a special week...and we were able to provide them with a white Christmas too!  I hope you all enjoyed your Christmas even half as much, and I hope that 2010 will be a wonderful year for us all. ;)

Well, today is my sweet mama's birthday.  {Happy Birthday, Mom!!}  I actually started making this card for her birthday LAST year {using Monday Mojo Sketch 68...current at the time -lol!}, but it was one of those things that ended up going terribly awry in the process.  I ultimately ended up putting it aside and making another card for her instead, and then went back to this card about a month or so later.  I'm really glad I did because it ended up looking like "her" after all and so I saved it for her birthday this year...and she seems to like it.  Then again, she's my mom...what else is she gonna say??  ;)



I have a lot of other cards to share with you too, so I hope to be posting more often...wish me luck! ;)  I've lost some subscribers during my hiatus, so if you're here I wanted to tell you how much I appreciate your hanging in there with me.  I know this blog...and life in general...isn't about how much attention we get, but it's really nice to know when others are blessed by what we do.  At least for me anyway...am I weird?  ;)

Thanks so much for the visit, and I hope you'll stop by again soon. Until then, many blessings to you!

Economy boosters (just doin' my part -lol!):

Cardstock:  Curious Iridescent Cryogen White (Arjo-Wiggins), (ret.) Summer Cloud Blue, Bamboo, Cranberry, vellum (CTMH)

Patterned Paper:  Out & About No. 2 Swirls (My Mind's Eye)

Stamps:  Fancy Florals Remixed (Verve Stamps)

Ink:  Antique Linen Distress Ink (Ranger), Cranberry (CTMH)

Other:  VersaMark (Tsukineko), clear embossing powder, heat tool, Liquid Glass, piercing tool (CTMH), Cuttlebug, Leafy Branch embossing folder (Provo Craft), Classic and Scallop Oval Nestabilities dies (Spellbinders), mini flower punch (Michael's), brads (Making Memories), Ruby Red and White Opal Liquid Pearls (Ranger), piercing ruler (Tim Holtz), sandpaper, foam mounting tape, sewing machine, white thread