Thursday, October 30, 2008

What I have been up to.

I know, I know, I said I was going to be more "daily" with the blogging. But this time I have a really good excuse.

Excuse?? No excuse is good enough? Really, I think this one is. I have been busy. Busy scrapping that is. I decided to join the sketchapalooza class over at Feeling Scrappy. I love to look at sketches and see what others create with them but actually using them causes my blood pressure to rise. But I love them so I decided to take a class and force myself to learn to utilize these great sources of inspiration.

Here is my rendition of the first "sketch assignment".

Credits: Sketch designed by Stacey. Papers and Elements from Digital Candy's March Birthday Kit freebie. Designers are Jen of ChaosLounge, Illyera and Melissa of Devine Designs. Alpha from Sunshine Sweets blog freebie. Font is Pristina.

I am pleased with the results. Sketch 2 has been up for a full day and I have not gotten very far. I am hung up on the step in the process that gets me whether I am digiscrapping or doing a traditional layout. I have to pick the paper. This is always a struggle. Something else I am hoping this class will help me overcome. Aww, I am putting so much on this one poor little class. The pressure of it all.

Also, I took a leap and entered a layout of mine in a contest at PenScrapper. The prize is a medium size Bamboo Fun. One grand prize winner wins the Bamboo fun, a new printer and a new digital camera. I entered for fun but I really, really want that Bamboo fun. Winners are chosen based on visitors votes. If you are so inclined, it would please me a great deal if you would click on the clicky and vote for my layout. Thanks!!!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Silence, blessed silence


DH and the kids just left. I am going to enjoy my moments of silence while I have them. They headed out to see some friends and I get to enjoy my house, my Saturday football and some sort of craft project all by my little lonesome.

So what am I going to do with my free time? Well first I am going to finish vacuuming the great room and living room so I don't have to feel too guilty about not doing any house care. After that I am going to play with some new beads that came in the mail yesterday. They are for making Christmas themed charms for the SS Christmas charm swap. I also have a couple of Christmas theme earring sets and a new watch face that I want to design a beaded band for.

If I get done with those projects, I may get all crazy and drag out the scrapbooking stuff. I have not touched my paper crafting stuff for a while so maybe today should be the day. Oh the possibilities.......

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Sick kids and other fun stuff

Yesterday it was DD(8) and today it is DD(12). Yesterday DD(8) woke me up at 6:10 a.m. (yes I confess, the kids get themselves up and sometimes I don't even see them before they walk out the door. DH, fabulous guy that he is, makes them breakfast and drops them off at school on his way to the office.) But I digress. She wakes me at 6:10 a.m. whining pitiously "Mom, I don't feeeeelllll goooooddddd!"

Okay, come here and let me check you out. No fever, color in the cheeks. So what is the problem. "I have a headache and my tummy huuuuurrrtssss!" Nothing like 8yo melodrama. So back to bed she went, where she promptly went back to sleep. After a conference with DH, we decided that she really was not feeling good and we let her stay home. She spent most of the day lounging on the couch with some whimpering thrown in.

This morning she was back by my bed with the whining but since by last night she was acting much better, I told her to get dressed and go to school. So all was right with the world. DS and I were hanging out, watching a bit of TV, playing games on his Thomas computer when the phone rang.

Me: Hello

Caller: Mom, I don't feel good, will you come get me?

Me: (since they sound nearly alike on the phone) Which one are you? *
*Note to self to remind them about identifying themselves on the phone.

Caller: It is J.

Me: Now you are sick?

Caller: Yeah. Will you come get me, pleeeaaassseee?

So now DD 12 is ensconced on the couch with her computer.

In other fun stuff, I have been having a lot of fun the last couple of days wandering around the digi-scrapping world. I have found a couple of new sites and communities to join. Everyone is working hard and I am finding all kinds of things to play with. These ladies are so creative and I appreciate them sharing their talent with those of us who are not as gifted.

And finally, here is the layout I made to send in for the album SS sisters are making for Donnann and Dan.

Monday, October 20, 2008

A Day to honor and say goodbye

Did you see a red balloon floating by? Perhaps you wondered why you were seeing it in the sky? Over the last 3 days or so hundreds of balloons have been released to honor a little boy taken too soon. I did not have the pleasure of meeting this little boy but his loss has touched me deeply. His mom was a regular poster on the wonderful worldwide scrapbooking community Scrapshare. Through her posts and layouts I came to know Danny's spirit, his zest for life. He had a smile that could stop traffic.

Danny was a sweet, energetic little boy. Sadly this darling little boy had been feeling under the weather for a couple of weeks, being sick to his tummy and having no appetite. So unusual for a 5 year old boy. Donnann took her little guy to the doctor to figure out this problem. A visit or two and some blood work to try and find the solution to the mystery. On Monday we were waiting patiently for an update about the blood work. By Wednesday a 4cm tumor had been discovered on his brainstem and Danny was rushed into emergency surgery. Unfortunately the surgery caused Danny to go into a coma. By Friday Donnann and her husband Dan were making funeral arrangements.

Danny gave the gift of life to four others. What an amazing thing in the midst of this huge loss.

Those who could dropped everything to drive to Kenosha, WI today to support Donnann and Dan as they said a final goodbye to their little boy. Around the world the members of the Scrapshare community showed their solidarity with Donnann and Dan by releasing red balloons in honor of Danny. Some did it at retreats and gatherings of Scrapshare friends over the weekend, some released them at the time coinciding with the start of the Memorial Mass and others, like myself, waited until their kids were out of school for the day to release their balloons.

This afternoon my three and I headed for a local park with our balloons.
Me and my kids.
The release.
Away they go. I hope that Danny can see them!

David tripped and fell with his balloon and the balloon did not survive so I gave him mine. He did not want to let it go with the others. When he did let it go, he was under a tree. Hopefully as the wind blew through the tree, the balloon was released to the sky.

Our hearts are with Donnann, Dan and Madison, Danny's sister, as they try to find their way through a world without Danny in it.

I am struggling with this loss to our SS family. My own son is so close in age to Danny. I know they would have been great friends. This has brought up a lot of feelings of fear and uncertainty. This is the second time I have been touched by the loss of a child close in age to one of my own. Danny's loss has brought up back memories of the other child, a friend of my daughter's. Life is so uncertain and at any moment our present, our normal could be upended. Hug your kids, enjoy them, don't let life get in the way because we never know what the next corner will bring. It is so easy to get caught up in homework, sports and activities schedules, chores and responsibilities. Be sure to make time for fun because we want them to remember the fun times.

Many of us have intense thoughts and feelings about our friend's loss. Follow the blog train to see what others have to share.

May Donnann, Dan and Madison find peace in the outpouring of love from family and friends, real life and virtual, as they look for a new normal.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

So Sad!

I am so sad for a family from Scrapshare. Their sweet little boy is leaving them. They took him to the doctor a couple days ago and a 4cm tumor was found on his brainstem. He was rushed into emergency surgery. Unfortunately the surgery caused a coma that he is not waking up from. The process has begun to declare him braindead.

See this blog of a fellow SS sister for full details.

I will be joining my fellow SS sisters and their families in honoring Danny by releasing a red balloon at the time that coincides with the beginning of his service. Will you join us?

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Nearly a whole month

It has been nearly a whole month since I posted here. Someone at Scrapshare posted to give us bloggers that haven't updated recently a kick in the keester. Somehow the time slips by and I don't realize how long it goes between posts. So what should one talk about daily? As I understand it, that is the goal, to post daily.

Stay tuned for this month's installment of the 12 of 12 challenge coming soon.

In the meantime, let me tell you about all the fabulousness that has been going on around here in the last month.

The most exciting thing was sitting in Reser Stadium on the campus of Oregon State University while history was being made. My beloved Beavers took on the giants of the University of Southern California and pulled off the unbelievable. Taking down the #1 team in the nation was amazing. The excitement was palpable. Unfortunately, the only pictures I have are from my cell phone camera and frankly leave a lot to be desired but oh the memories!! I also got to go to the OSU/WSU game where we came out on top. Currently we are 3-3 on the season.

I was also devoting a great deal of time to a grass roots organization trying to help solve the funding crisis facing our Extension Office. Our immediate needs are met through a last minute reprieve from the Feds with the renewal of the Federal Timber payments but our work is not done. In four years we will be without funding again unless something is put in place before then. That is the next goal and it will be a long one but for now we can breathe a little easier. Hopefully it will also mean fewer meetings for a while. And in the meantime, it is time to fill out all those 4-H forms for a new year. Woohoo!!

The last major occurrence was the successful running of the annual jog-a-thon for the girls' school. It was a major success. We brought in a record amount of money that will go to paying for lots of fabulous field trips for the kids.

I have also been spending a lot of time digging around different blogs and websites looking for all the perfect digital scrapbooking elements that might be out there. I miss my paper scrapbooking but am finding digital to be so much cleaner. There is so much neat stuff out there and I am having a lot of fun looking at lots of layouts and ideas.

Oh and then there are the kittens........ but they deserve their own post. I will get to that. I promise.

So that is what, in a nutshell, has been happening in my little corner of the world. I promise to try to not be away so long.