Sunday, August 30, 2009

Amy's 1st Day Digi Layout

I've been feeling the "itch" to scrap again, so that's what I did today. This layout took all afternoon, because I was fiddling with it so much. It might have been worth it, because I like how it turned out even though, or maybe because, it's fairly simple.

Template: Collection 4, Janet Phillips (Daily Digi Files #4-no longer available)
Digital Kit: It's Elementary by Dani Mogstad (SweetShoppeDesigns)
Font: CTMH Noodge

Not too much to report except that the girls let "Oma," across the street, cut their hair today. She's offered to do it for years, but they always said no. Just in the past few months they thought it might be a good idea and today it worked out all around. She cut quite a bit of what she called dead ends off (over 2 inches on both) and admonished me to not put their hair in ponytails as the bands are breaking their hair. Headbands are okay though. She said the bands are too harsh for their baby fine hair right now. I don't have photos of the haircuts by Oma, because they decided to surprise me and show me when they were done! It didn't bother me because Oma was going to do it last weekend, but our schedules didn't mesh, so I knew at some point soon she'd do it.

I also spend a fair amount of time working on organizing some of my digi stash. Not done yet, but made a little headway, which is better than nothing, right?

So, all in all, a decent day, even though weather-wise, it sure feels like fall right now. I'm wearing jeans and earlier today I had my knitted socks on!

Thanks so much for visiting! Hope you have a great start to your week

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Thanks and Wish...

I got a package in the mail yesterday and said something about an order I'd placed. Um...I hadn't placed any orders and I didn't even recognize the company! I carefully opened the box, just in case I was going to have to return what I didn't order and when I peeked inside, I started doing the giddy girly dance. You know the one where you jump from foot to foot on your tippy toes and clap your hands in glee? Well, that was me. You see, this was from two very special young boys named Bjorn and Mathias, who have a very, very special grandma named Kathi. I have a birthday coming up on Monday and Kathi, I mean the boys, got me the Hero Arts Dots and Flowers background stamp! I've mentioned it in a previous post (I think I said I was too cheap to buy it) and have had serious stamp envy when Kathi's posted cards using her Dots and Flowers background stamp.

It was just the ticket to get me to go out into my craft room and break it in! Wanna see?
I used one of Kathi's cards as the starting off point for my card. Because I don't have that adorable owl, I took things in a different direction. I recently discovered a blog called Scrap a Little! Erin, of Inky Smiles, told me about these lovely cardstock roses she found and there was a tutorial on how to make them! I knew I had to try them out. And decided to make one for my card today. I used my Cricut and George cartridge to cut the hearts needed, only mine is the original Cricut and it doesn't cut all the same sizes. So I had to adjust a smidge with the sizes I have available. But it was easy peasy to put the rose together. When I finished though, I thought the rose was WAY too big to fit the card well, so I took off the largest hearts layer. I think it still looks nice and the size works better. I don't know if you can see it well, but I sprayed some Glimmer Mist (Iridescent Gold) on the rose as well. Oh and you'll have to look closely, but I added a dot with my Desert Sand marker, then I went over it with a Sakura glitter pen. I used the same pen to draw lines on the Colonial White piece.
Stamps: Dots and Flowers (Hero Arts), For Every Occasion (CTMH)
Ink: Desert Sand ink pad and marker (CTMH)
Cardstock: Bamboo, Desert Sand, Colonial White, Topiary
Accessories: Sakura Clear Star glitter pen, glittered brad (Hobby Lobby), Martha Stewart punch, Glimmer Mist

I then got to work making another card. This one was inspired this one created by Sarah of Sarah's Paper Tray. I came across some glittery clear embossing powder by Stampendous and decided to try it and see how it would look. I like it, although it's hard to photograph. LOL I've long admired the cards I've seen where the dandilion fluff image is used. Earlier this summer or maybe late spring, I found a clear stamp set called Fine and Dandy (by Autumn Leaves) at Michaels (the concept store in Brighton) and thought it would work great.

I like how this one came out, too. I guess I am in a glittery mood today as I used the same Sakura glitter pen on this card (on the scalloped piece and in the focal image dandilion). A month or so ago, I discovered Michaels was carrying those teeny tiny mini brads and I picked up a couple of packages. It's the Recollections brand. I finally broke open the package today. I used a ruler to try to get my holes all lined up straight, but it must have slipped a tad. Oh well. The wish sentiment seemed to fit just perfectly. I didn't want to use the whole swirl on the image, so I inked the stamp up and then scotch taped off the area of the image I didnt' want to use. Had I been thinking ahead, I might have stamped the entire image first, then the dandilions and you could see it peek through, but that would be too clever on my part. LOL
Hindsight is 20/20, right?

Stamps: Fine and Dandy (Autumn Leaves), Card Commentary (CTMH)
Cardstock: Kraft (Archivers), Bamboo, Topiary (CTMH)
Inks: Desert Sand, Topiary {used a Topiary marker to draw a line, too} (CTMH)
Accessories: itty bitty mini brads (Recollections at Michaels) Sakura glitter pen, EK Success border punch, Nestabilities circle and scallop circle dies, glittered clear embossing powder (Stampendous)

And that does it from me today. Thanks for your support and encouragement about the things I am working on these days. It sure means a lot! Thanks, too, for visiting!


Cross Stitched Butterflies...

Hello there!

Remember all those days over the summer when I said the girls and I went to the pool and I'd let them swim while I worked on my handwork? You may or may not have noticed that I never said just what it was I was working on and that was on purpose. It was a birthday gift and I didn't want the recipient to have an inkling of what I was up to. Sneaky, huh? I finished up the project, framed it and sent it on its merry way and then the waiting started. I was antsy to hear that it arrived safe and sound and it did!

You want to know one of the reasons I love the internet so much? Because I've "met" some pretty special people online that I never would have had the opportunity to meet in real life. Kathi is one of those very special people. We first "met" when we were both consultants for CTMH. The following is true, but I don't know if Kathi even remembers this...I hope it doesn't make her feel on the spot or anything, but I had posted something on the consultant message boards and I think I had said I wasn't sure if I could share where I got the information from as it was from a book. I think I had taken a picture of the book and posted it or something like that. Anyway, Kathi responded with what I've come to know as her wonderful wisdom and pretty much told me about copyrights and such(a very strong passion of hers and she lets you know not to violate them). I remember sort of feeling put in my place by her response, but not in a bad way. It just made me much more conscious of copyrights and that is a good thing. But I didn't think she liked me much at that time...I don't know why, maybe I thought I should have known better at the time about copyrights. LOL I ended up quitting CTMH and she ended up starting a blog. I'd check it from time to time (when I could remember she had one, this was way before I discovered Google Reader) and over time I would be so enamored of her creations that I left comments and it was from there that we would email each other from time to time and our friendship blossomed. I'm truly grateful to Kathi for her wisdom, humor and immense talent in creating deceptively simple cards. She inspires me to want to do and be better. And because of this I wanted to do something extra special for her birthday. And here it is...for my friend Kathi. Thank you so much for your friendship.

I have met so many other wonderful friends online as well. And I appreciate and treasure each one.

I didn't mean to get all sappy, but I think it's important to let those you care about know you care about them. Have a wonderful day...thanks for your friendship and thanks for visiting!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Stepping Out...15 Minutes At A Time...

Happy Thursday to you! My friend, Kari, of Kari's Scrappin' Korner, will be so happy. She wrote on her blog that she was going to start walking today, the day her kids started school. She was motivated by Laurel of Laurel's Place because Laurel recently posted her fitness goals, a fabulous album she made and the blog address of her fitness blog. Well, Kari, today I walked "with" you! *Ü* I pulled on my walking shoes and enjoyed a brisk walk through our neighborhood. The weather was gorgeous and I really enjoyed it. The battery in my mp3 player is dead (gotta plug it in), so I just listened to the music of the birds and life in the neighborhood. I actually walked for 35 minutes and realized there are lots of streets in my neighborhood I could walk...some are fairly even and some are on somewhat steep hills. Makes me wish we didn't have snowy winters, but if I can, I'm going to try to walk every week day outside.

As I was walking, I was contemplating starting a new blog for journaling my not specifically crafty posts and ultimately decided against it for now. Mainly because I strongly doubt I'd keep up with it. LOL Plus, I'm trying to streamline things, not necessarily add another to do, to my list (which I'm going to start writing down instead of relying on my feeble memory) of things I want to do! So, forgive the forays into less than crafty topics, if they are not your cup of tea. But, in the end all these things will certainly work towards my Creative Bliss and so to me they would fit as subjects to write about.

I mentioned earlier that I was pretty much gonna try a no buy philosophy or at the most, a very extremely limited buy, in regards to crafty stuff. Gotta work on delinieating between the needs and wants. And I'm applying that to the household stuff, too. Tightening the old belt, as it were. To that end I've been picking up some interesting reads from the library. One book is called You CAN Afford to Stay At Home With Your Kids, and while it was written in the late 90s (so some financial figures are off a bit) the basic principals seem very sound. It made a lot of sense to me about things one can do to be able to live well on one income. I've also borrowed Frugal Living for Dummies, The Complete Tightwad Gazette and The MomsTown Guide To Getting It All. Well, true confession time, when I checked out that last book, I thought it looked familiar and I finally checked my bookshelf...Oops, I already bought that one! So the book went back to the library and I'm reading my own copy. LOL

Anyway, the gist of all this is I'm finally working on some internal stuff that I've been wanting to do in addition to getting the house cleaned up. Mom's starting to take a little bit better care of herself, so she can care for her family better.

Another thing I'm working on is Flylady. I've know about and have been subscribed to her emails for several years (I get them in digest form, not individually, so I get one or two emails a day at most). Frankly most of the time, I glanced at them and moved on to other things in my inbox. But, for the past few weeks I've been reading most of the digests again and gearing myself up for the whole You Can Do Anything for 15 Minutes philosophy.

Speaking of which, my 15 minutes for typing this up are done, so I need to close for now and get working on my household planner. I hope I won't bore you to tears by posting stuff like this (and links) from time to time, but in the end all of this stuff may help me get back out into my craft room. *wink, wink* without feeling any guilt that I'm neglecting something I need to be doing. Maybe it'll help you, in some small way, too.

Have an awesome day and thanks so much for taking the time to visit.


Monday, August 24, 2009

My First Pair of Socks...Completed!

Hello there! I hope you are doing well this fine Monday. I spent my morning finishing up washing those remaining dirty windows. Whew...tick that chore off the list for a while. LOL Of course, it's looking might stormy right now, so thank goodness I worked more on the inside of the windows and not so much on the sides facing outside, so it can rain and I won't feel like I am back at square one.

Our weekend was pretty quiet, or rather mine was, by choice. Steve and the girls headed out to our friend Dave's for lunch on Saturday, then I took them to the pool when they got back. On Sunday they decided to head back to the foothills and take another hike at another State Park. I did opt out of this day trip, so I could have a quiet day doing something I wanted, and that was to work on my socks. It was nice and relaxing. And I finished them up early last evening! Yay, me! Wanna see?
Of course, I can see all my mistakes and areas where they could look better, but those don't negate how good it feels to have accomplished making my own pair of socks. It's not near as hard as I thought it would be and I can see where the appeal in making them is. They don't take too awfully long and they look kinda cute. In fact, both Jessica and Amy have requested a pair! *Ü*
And this is a somewhat strategic shot to show you how they look on my feet. This way you can't see the laddering effect I haven't been able to get out of my stitching. Laddering is what happens when you don't pull your yarn quite tight enough when you are changing needles. I pulled so tight I thought I'd break the yarn and I still got ladders, so I guess I need to practice more to get it to look right. Still and all, I pretty pleased that they fit, look neat and are comfortable!

Thanks for stopping by! I hope you have a great start to your week.


Saturday, August 22, 2009

First Few Days...Done!

Hi There!

I hope this finds you well and ready to enjoy a lovely late summer weekend. Our weather is supposed to be warm (hot?) and dry. A good weekend to be out and about. Both girls made it through their first few days of school and their enthusiasm and spirits are still very high. Jessica told me there's a new girl in her class from Afghanistan! Her teacher is still really, really nice and she comes out of class with a bright smile on her face. Amy adores, I mean, adores her teacher! It's so nice to see my girls excited about school (kind of like I was when I was their age). Amy's teacher had them sitting on top of their desks while they were doing a social studies lesson on the continents (I think). Anyway, they were "flying" from continent to continent during the lesson. Way to make it fun and interesting, huh? Amy was in awe that the teacher let them sit on TOP of their desks! LOL I heard Amy's friend, Hattie, tell her mom...I just LOVE Mrs. H...I think Amy feels the same way.

I thought maybe I'd get out into my craft room during the week, and obviously, that has not been the case. And I'm not sure just when I'll get back out there. Someday, soon, I hope. Here's the deal, just to give you a heads up. Several weeks ago, Steve bought a new version of Quicken. He's been inputting all our financial data into it. He wanted to show me the facts and figures and said, now that the girls are in going to be in school full time, have you thought about going back to work? The answer to that is no. And I felt a little mad that he wanted me to think about it. But I couldn't ignore that my purchases weren't helping our situation(it's not bad by any means, but the economy has done a number on our investments, like it has so many others). So, knowing that it's very important to me to be able to stay at home, I've been extremely conscious of my spending since then. I'm making use of free resources where I can and the library has proven to be a good thing. It's an older library and for a long time didn't have books I wanted to check out, but that's changed somewhat, or I'm more open to what they have to offer, LOL. Plus they are building a brand new building up the road that I think is supposed to be bigger. ANYWAY...I've been checking out books on cutting costs, living frugally, being thrifty, whatever you want to call it. And, some crafty books, too. (*wink*) If I'm brutally honest, there isn't a thing I really need in terms of crafty supplies. Sure, there are things I think I want, but I've got enough supplies here to last me a long, long time. And I've made a vow to myself to USE it! LOL So, when I get back out to my craft room, that's what I'll be doing. Stretching my brain and creativity to use what I've got. That should definitely help the budget(and give the old brain a workout).

As an off-shoot of that whole way of of the things I've been really looking forward to now that the girls are in school full time is finally getting to work on getting better organized around the house. You know...without distractions! And I'm hoping doing these things will help me "earn my keep" around here. Maybe if I work on not spending needlessly AND taking better care around the house, I'll be able to be at home for a while longer yet. I don't think I'll be bored, but if I am, once I get done what I want to around here, then I'm sure I'll be much more open to maybe looking into some part time work.

So, with that in mind, I've gotten started on some of the things I've neglected for too long around here. Yesterday's project was finishing up washing the screens on the windows and getting the windows washed. Which entails much more than that implies. Our windows have storm windows in front of the actual window, so it's like I have two sets of windows to wash, plus all the debris that accumulates on the sills. And because it's time-consuming...I've not done it in a long time, making it take that much longer to get done now. I'm proud to say that I've done ALL the screens and gotten three more rooms of windows done, as of yesterday. I still have two more rooms to do and then this project will be done for a while. With plans to do it more regularly, so it doesn't get this bad again. LOL

BUT, if you've gotten this far, it's not all work and no play for me. I HAVE been working on crafty stuff...just not making cards. I've finally been working on making a pair of socks for me! Remember I started a sock earlier this summer? Well, in my recent library visits, I came across a book about knitting a pair of socks at the same time! Not just one, but both, so when I'm done with the project, I'll have a pair completed instead of just one and then having to start all over again for the second (which makes one want to sigh...I have to do this all over again??). I hear they call this Second Sock Syndrome, meaning a lot of times only one sock ever gets made. LOL

I found two circular needles similar to the length recommended in the book (a smidge longer than called for, but it still works) in my mom's stash of knitting needles that I found several months ago. They are all plastic, which I wasn't used to at all, but they are working out fine. And here's where I am with the project as of yesterday...

I've actually done the heel part (the part that intimidated me the most about making socks) and it wasn't too bad at all! Last night I finished the sole and am now working on the foot part, then it'll be the toe and I'm all done! Because I have rather "muscular" calves, thanks to my mom and grandmother (I could never wear tall boots comfortably because my calves are kinda large, couldn't zip them up without catching some skin-ouch-or squishing them so tight the boot never fit right) I am making these shorter socks than the pattern calls for. I figured I'd never get the sock over my calf and I don't want to do the work and not be able to wear them. This is just a basic sock, no fancy stitches or designs. I wanted to figure out how to do it first before trying to get all fancy. LOL

And if you got this far, bless you! I hope I didn't bore you to tears. I just wanted to give you a heads up as to what I've been up to and thinking about lately. I'm not upset or anything about the changes...I'm thinking of it as an interesting challenge and something kind of, sort of, fun to see how well I can do at cutting costs.

I hope you have a terrific weekend! The girls are itching to swim again and now that the weather is supposed to warm up...I think that's what we'll do.


Thursday, August 20, 2009

Back to School Time!

Okay, so I'm a day actually started yesterday. But man, I took advantage of the kid free time to delve into some deep cleaning and before I knew it, it was time to pick the girls up! LOL Then the adreneline rush from feeling good about how clean my entry way is wore off and I was pooped.

Both girls were so excited to get back to school that they were awake before their normal wake up time. The had gotten dressed, ate breakfast, made lunch, and brushed their teeth well before it was time to leave. They were definitely chomping at the bit. LOL (Geez, didn't they have a fun summer with their old mom?)

Ahhhhhh...that they would retain this enthusiasm and excitement for school throughout their academic career.

Both girls were just as excited about school at the end of the day. Jessica said her 1st grade teacher is really nice and Amy proclaimed third grade to be awesome.

Both girls got up early again this morning, yay! After I dropped them off, I had a teeth cleaning appointment to keep, then I got back to cleaning after I got home. The bathrooms are sparkly today. *Ü*

I hope you are having a positive week full of enthusiasm as well. Thanks for stopping by!


Sunday, August 16, 2009

A Hiking We Will Go...

We decided to go to El Dorado State Park this afternoon and have a picnic. I almost didn't go, but changed my mind with it being the last weekend before school starts. I'm glad I went. We had a great time exploring a few new to us trails and enjoying some lovely weather.
As we were hiking along the trail, this mountain side was on our left. There are many rock climbers that scale these things. They are much braver than I.
This is where we ended up having lunch. We hiked along the stream for a ways, but couldn't find any place to have our lunch. Just before we got to where we started hiking, we found this lovely spot.
Amy and Jessica set up our blanket and we feasted on sandwiches, chips and some grapes.
Then we explored the water. Amy found a stick to poke into the stream and made lots of bubbles. She also slipped and got one leg pretty wet, but she was just fine.
Jessica wanted to go on the same rock as Daddy.
We hiked a bit more after we ate and came to an area where the girls could take their shoes off and enjoy the nice, very cold, mountain stream.
Yes, even I waded for a few minutes. It felt great for about 2 seconds, then it was bone chillingly cold!
My two intrepid hikers who fear nothing even rocky trails. Jessica led us most of the way.
This is a shot of the same area where we had our picnic, only from the bridge that was right by us.
And just about my most favorite shot of the day. Walking back to the van, Jess and Daddy shared a sweet moment talking about how much fun they had on our little hike.

Thanks so much for stopping by! Hope your Sunday has a special moment or two to treasure.


Saturday, August 15, 2009

Easing Back Into It...

Hello there!

Believe it or not, I wandered into my craft room today! I made three card fronts (fronts because I was too lazy to cut out the card bases and attach them~LOL). They are very simple, but I look at it as easing back into the creative swing of things. Yeah, that sounds good.
This first card I'm sharing uses the new Hero Arts Cling Stamps (Here's a link I found that shows them, I didn't see them on the Hero Arts website). I found this one at Archiver's and used a coupon to get it. It's a rubber stamp, but it clings to an acrylic block and has the image on the back side so you can see it when you are stamping. See that background on the image? I love it! And there is a rubber stamp that is just that background, but I'm too cheap to buy it. So, I'm getting a taste of it in this cling stamp. I colored in the flowers using pencils and oms (odorless mineral spirits) then added some yellow Stickles for the dots. The background paper is from Making Memories Wedding paper pack (found at Michaels earlier this summer).
This next card is so I can finally show this little crocheted butterfly I made earlier this summer. I found the pattern here after seeing some in an Etsy shop called Paper Blooms. The goodies in Paper Blooms are SO pretty, but if I can make it myself, I'm sure gonna try. Those who are not crocheters, I wanted to give you the link to the Etsy shop in case you were interested. The background paper is from Basic Grey's June Bug 6x6 paper pack and the ribbon is some I got at Archiver's last Christmas season. They were selling it for a phenomenal price of 29 cents a yard at the time! Hello is from PTI's Mixed Message set.
And here is my final card for today. I discovered Plum Purdy stamps from a blog in late spring and couldn't resist ordering this Garden Collection Set. (Goodness, she's added some adorable Halloween stamps!) I was itching to color up an image and got to do it today. I used pencils and oms. Nana's Nursery (the boy version) from DCWV provided colors that worked well with the image colored in. I was silly and colored first, then tried to coordinate the coloring with paper. I should do that the other way around. The buttons are from my stash, as is the DMC floss. Just Because is from Mixed Message again.

Would you believe that the industrious spider was busy last night and spun a new web?! Steve even noticed it this morning and asked me if I'd seen it. It was in the same general vicinity, but this one was hooked to the carport on two sides and our house on one side and that holly bush on another side. This time it truly looked like it was floating. I almost took a picture, but then remembered my promise and left it alone (cuz if I took the picture I'd feel compelled to share it). And a few hours later...the whole thing was gone again! I had no idea spiders completely got rid of webs or moved locations of them so darn frequently. Maybe it's just some that do as I've seen webs (not nearly as big and intricate as this particular spider makes) that have been in the same location until I wipe them down~which can be months....LOL.

Whew! I guess that's it from me today! Hope your weekend is a good one. I had thought about taking the girls swimming today, but the weather didn't cooperate. Now that the pool is closing it's beautiful out but earlier today it was windy and a bit rainy. Oh well, that's the way it goes sometimes.


Friday, August 14, 2009

Brain Dump Post (Warning...sorta long)

Happy Friday to you! I don't have any artwork to show you, I've got lots of random thoughts running around in my head and I feel the urge to just get them out so I can move on with my day. LOL Read if you want, or simply skip along to your next blog. I don't mind. *Ü*

Are you happy that I don't have a spider web picture or two or three? Well, the reason for that, is Mr. (Mrs.?) Spider has moved the web yet again. I'm not sure why, except maybe he/she really didn't like me nosing around so much and misting it. LOL I noticed the web was still there in the morning and a bit later as I was watering plants, I saw that he/she caught a bee. Success! It was all wrapped up in whatever they create to make their web (silk?). The girls and I went out for a playdate and when we got home just a couple of hours later, the web was gone! No, not torn down, the links to the web were still there, but no web and no bee. And I haven't been able to see where it's been moved to. So, I guess my little foray into taking photos of spiderwebs is over. I thought to myself, I probably should have taken a photo of the success the spider had, but oh well. Thanks for indulging me a bit, but you can rest easy that I will not be posting any more spider web photos. Honest, and for true.

We went to the "big park" for our playdate with my friend, Becky and her kids yesterday. The kids had a great time running around and playing together. The park has a small water "fountain" feature where water streams shoot up at random from the ground. It was very entertaining watching the little kids (not ours) play in it. Although Amy got herself soaked and then ran off to play, knowing she'd not melt and her clothes would dry. Becky had a Sudoku puzzle book with her and I told her I knew it was super popular but I never could get into it because I didn't understand how to do it. So she showed me and I was really intrigued. So much so, I went to the Dollar Tree after dinner and picked up a book of puzzles after dinner. $1 for some fun. Can't beat that. Thanks, Becky for showing me how to solve the puzzles. I have done 4 of them already! Of course, these may be "easy" ones, but I am enjoying the challenge of figuring them out. Gotta keep the brain active, right?

After lunch yesterday the girls and I then went to the local pool. We had talked about it earlier in the week and I said I might even swim this time. I lived up to that thought and got myself into the pool. The weather was warm, but pretty cloudy, a storm was blowing in. Anyway, I impressed myself because I tried diving for the first time since I was a young adult (most likely). I was trying to remember how long it had been. I''ve been in CO for 15 years now, for 5 years before that I lived in Palmdale, and while I had access to a pool at my apartment, I don't remember diving then. I grew up with an in-ground pool in our backyard. So throughout my childhood and before I moved to Palmdale I had daily access to that pool. I'm thinking the last time I actually did a dive was in my early 20s or late teens (and I'm gonna be 44 at the end of the month). Although I used the pool, a lot of times (in my late teens and early 20s) it was to lounge on a raft/floating chair of some sort with a drink and a book to read so I could catch some rays and keep cool. LOL I was initially surprised at how nervous I felt at first when I decided I would actually dive. So I ended up starting from the side of the pool and not from the diving board. I was pleasantly surprised that I didn't do a belly flop! The lifeguard told me it looked pretty good, too. So I tried the diving board next. Dang, I didn't remember being SO high above the water! It sure is a leap of faith to do a dive. But I did it and didn't embarrass myself too badly (and I got water up my nose). I was proud of myself for not worrying too much about how it looked and enjoying some fun play time with the girls. We got a couple of hours in of playing and swimming before lightning was spotted and we had to get out. Then it started to get windy and knowing how cold Jessica gets anyway, the wind would just make it more uncomfortable for her, so we left. And joked that the storm blew in just because I wanted to swim this time. LOL

After dinner, I mentioned I went out to find a Sudoku puzzle book. After I found that, I had an urge to head to the Goodwill and just look around to see if there was anything interesting-maybe I could find an item or two of clothing for the girls. When Sandy was here she was full of stories of the neat things she picked up there for low, low prices. I am happy to donate to Goodwill, but havne't ever felt too successful at finding things to buy there. This time I just browsed every where not expecting anything. I found a couple of books, a dress for Jess (for $1.50 because white tags were 50% off) and a swim suit for Amy. Now I know I just got them suits, but this suit held a bit of sentimental significance (at least I knew it would for Amy). She had one that she LOVED for over a year. She called it her purple suit. Well, this suit was faded to pink and the elastic in it was all stretched out, but she'd still wear it. Until I finally had to hide it when I discovered it now had a hole in it as well. She was so disappointed that she couldn't wear it anymore. She really loved that suit. And guess what I found at the Goodwill? THE same swimsuit only newish. It was in super shape and I had to snatch it up for her. She was so excited when she saw it! My other fun find was a denim jacket for me. A Levi Strauss denim jacket and it had a white ticket (meaning it was 50% off). It fit and I got it for $7.00! Whoa Nelly! I know have my own "Sandy Story" from the Goodwill. *Ü*

Okay, I think I've cleared my brain of the random stuff pinging around in there, so I will close for now. Thanks for indulging me if you read this. Have a great Friday and super start to your weekend!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

If At First You Don't Succeed...

Try, try again. Or maybe the title of this post could be...Location, Location, Location!

I'm so sorry. I know I said just yesterday that I wouldn't post any more spider web photos, but I had to break that promise. Because this morning, this is what I saw when I looked for the web.

This shot shows what it looks like now in the exact same spot as yesterday's photo. No one in this household has touched the web. I saw it last evening when I got home from doing some window shopping. But this is what it looks like this morning. It took me a bit to figure out where the web was...and some water misting.

I've not seen any bugs IN the web, so I guess it wasn't very successful for this spider. He/she must have decided to try a new spot. Do spiders eat their webs? I guess I could look it up. Kathi? Resident expert on spiders and probably know! (thanks for the spider facts)
This is a shot of the spider, towards the top leaves on the underside. I supposed I could have photoshopped this and put a circle in. As it is, you are seeing these photos straight out of the camera.

And for those of you who were interested in the name of the plant I posted a couple of days ago, I finally remembered to ask Steve for the name. It's called Jimson Weed or Datura stramonium. The first link is to photos of the plant and the second to some information I found doing a search. I'm not sure just how accurate it is. Since I posted on Sunday, we've had 3 more blooms. They don't last but a day or so. Currently two blooms are open. Steve won't be behaving wonky, I promise. He likes the look of the flower and is proud of the fact that he found his own plant. The fact that it has those properties I think makes it a more "manly" flower for him. LOL Cuz, you know, real guys don't usually get all happy over flowers. Although he also really likes the morning glory, too. Ours re-seeded itself and so our arbor looks much more lush than it ever has-refer back to the linked post's the last picture I posted of my "wild" garden. Of course, the tons of rain might have helped it get so lush, too. LOL Oh wait, it's the MOON Flower that he likes more than the morning glory, but it's a variation of the morning glory that blooms in the evening. We haven't been able to get one to really grow well, yet.

Okay, that's enough babble from me today. One of these days I promise I will have a crafty post again. The girls start school next week (in my best sing-song voice)...*Ü*


Tuesday, August 11, 2009

This Spider's a Perfectionist!

As I was starting my Tuesday morning routine of getting all the trash out to the curb, I couldn't help but notice that the spider has been busy fixing up his (her?) web. There were some big gaps developing in it since my last post. Not so anymore.

One of the most fascinating things to me about this web is the location. Usually one sees a web in a corner of something and I guess this technically is sort of attached to the corner of our carport. But to me, this one looks almost as if it's just floating in air don't you think? I tried misting it per someone's comment to hopefully be able to capture it more clearly-Mr. (Mrs?) Spider didn't like the misting too much, but stayed on the web the while photo shoot. (Please disregard dirty carports and windows if you enlarge any pictures).
This is where the web is attached on the one side. That's a holly bush that I'm not particularly fond of, but Steve really likes it and it's going crazy this year.

And you can see the connection from the web to the strand going down to the holly bush here.
This one may be harder to see, but this is where it's attached to the carport.

The sun was hitting just right and I HAD to take more pictures. It's so fascinating to me.

I'll try to refrain from any more spiderweb posts in the future. Back to your regularly scheduled day, now. LOL Thanks for indulging me if you read this post.