Friday, April 29, 2005

Happy Birthday To me....

Posted by Hello

Check out all the cool birthday goodies! I'm feeling quite spoiled right now. We celebrated my birthday at El Toritos last night. It was a feast of chips and salsa, Chicken Caesar Salad (yummm) and presents. And what birthday celebration would be complete without a trip to the 99 cent store afterwards? We know how to party. Thankfully we didn't find any new....have to have... stamp-able items at the 99 cent store.... With four stampers in the same store... we could have emptied those shelves.

So back to my no particular order....
Basket of Bath & Body works goodies, candles, tea light house
365 days of knitting calendar
Yummy hyacinth soy candle (soy candles - my new favorite!)
A mini sewing machine - can't wait to try it... I think my workshop customers will love this too!
Scrapbooks etc. magazine
CK's Scrapbooking Tips and Tricks (starting reading this one first and it is AWESOME!!)
CTMH's new 9x9 reflections idea book
Summer paper slab - soooo many cool prints...stripes...dots......
Book on CD (forgot the name....but it's the sequal to this months book club book)

And not pictured is the $$$ hubby gave me for convention, my new clock radio with a cd player!!, and my gift card from the inlaws...

Yep, I'm one spoiled lady!!!

Thursday, April 28, 2005

Obviously it stopped raining.... Posted by Hello

The Saga begins....

The magnetic signs needed to be adhered to a clean car. So Joshua and I headed up to the gas station for a quicky car wash. $5 and 25 minutes later (there was a line) my car was sparkling clean. And then the fun began...

Now I don't think my Escape is a small car. Small SUV maybe, but not a small car. I kept putting the magnet on, taking it off, putting it on... trying to find a spot where it fit. The rules are quite strict. It must be a smooth, flat molding. Let me tell you, there are very few places where it is smooth and flat on my car. I finally managed to place them on the passenger doors, below the handle.

And I'd take a picture for all of you.... except... yep... that's right... It's Raining.

The good news is that I've already gotten several comments on the signs.

When I picked Joshua up from church last night, one of the kids standing outside said "In-de-pen-dent Con-sul-tant."

Bravo young man! At least I know somebody is reading it.

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Magnetic Signs are here...

A couple of weeks ago I finally bit the bullet and ordered magnetic signs for my car. I've thought about doing it for years and never followed through. Of course part of the problem used to be that I didn't feel comfortable putting them on my little Celica. She's not so pretty anymore, but she's the car that just keeps going and going. Now that Rick has the motorcyle and the Escape has become my primary mode of transportation....the magnetic signs seem like the next step, right? Ok that probably wouldn't be the next step in most people's minds.

Here are my reasons for ordering the signs... in no particular order....

1) I have NEVER seen another Close To My Heart consultant with signs.
2) Many people know I teach stamping and scrapbooking, but they think it's some kind of hobby.
3) I recruited all of my best customers. Now I have a big team and need to rebuild my customer base
4) I'm not the greatest at bringing up what I do in casual conversation. I'm thinking that people might notice my signs. (ya think?)

Here are the reasons I'm a little nervous to put them on my car

1) My name is HUGE on them.
2) I'm a little nervous to be a driving billboard
3) Did I mention that my name is HUGE?

Now the next decision is whether or not to let Rick drive the car with the signs on them. I'm not sure I can handle the hate email. (Love ya honey!)

And then I'm not really sure I should drive the car with them on.

Or maybe I better not talk on the cell phone while driving the car with the signs.

Thankfully I have a few more hours to mull all this over. The car is in the shop getting some warranty work done. It's safe for now.....

Hmmmm... Maybe I'll have some funny magnetic sign stories to share on my blog.... Ok, we'll add that to the reasons to put the signs on the car. People are nothing if not funny!

Monday, April 25, 2005

Much Like Home

Cycles of life....

I've started to recognize many cycles in my life. I go through periods when I can't stop stamping and scrapbooking, to times when I close my eyes when I walk through the stamp room. Times when I'm a writing fiend and times when my journal sits untouched. I used to think that it was because I had a short attention span. Maybe that's still the case. More likely it has to do with what is going on in my life and the time I have available.

Tax season is a time when I need an escape from thinking and thus the knitting and crochet needles come out. I can sit and mindlessly create. The hardest decision I have to make is what color to use. After that it's just following a pattern.. knitting back and forth. The monotony of it is soothing to my soul when the rest of my life is chaos.

But then tax season ends and suddenly I have more time than I know what to do with. My mind wanders. I have time to think things through, to make plans, to try to discover who I am.. to read.... to create....

I am at that time now but I'm still running around trying to do it all. To catch up on all that was pushed aside when I was too busy. I want to stamp. I want to scrapbook. I want to knit. I want to crochet. I want to read. I want to write. I flit from one thing to another without really making any progress. I can't seem to settle in and find me. I think maybe I enjoy too many things.

Another thing I enjoy probably a little too much for my own good... is a good blog. I've read many blogs over the years. Most of them I just pass by. A few become like a good book to me. I'm drawn to them. I enjoy reading new posts. I've become cyber friends with the authors. But like me they go through cycles. There are times when there just aren't enough new posts to keep me entertained and so I follow links to find new blogs.

I've recently stumbled across a treasure of blogs. Of people who speak my language. People who share the love of scrapbooking. The kind of scrapbooking that I'm drawn to. The scrapbooking of writers. True scrapbooking in my opinion is much more than the documentation of photos and life. My favorite scrapbook pages go beyond the vacation and the trip to the park. They tell the story of who. They celebrate the relationships. They give a glimpse into the people. And the blogs of the scrapbookers do the same... it's a fun glimpse into the hearts of others. A place where I can relate. A place much like home.

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

High School

I suppose all parents approach high school with a little fear and apprehension for their children. Will they fit in? Will they be safe? Will they succeed? My fears were a bit more extreme than that. I had this overwhelming need to find a different school for my son. I knew I absolutely couldn't send him to the local high school. And yet there were practicalities to think of. Could I drive him to a different school every day? Would it be any better?

Now I am not a nervous mother. I'm the perfect mother for a boy. Ok, maybe not perfect, but I can handle skinned knees and bloody noses. I know that no toy I buy is more exciting than the next latest and greatest power tool. I know that they like to take things apart to see how they work and that I will get teased for crying when I watch sad movies and commercials. I know that they are tough and strong and that the thing they love the most, when no one else is around, is to hang out and snuggle with mom. So I was kind of shocked when I started freaking about what high school to send him to when he was barely in the seventh grade.

And so I looked. And I asked. And I researched. And I prayed.

And I prayed.

And I prayed.

I don't really know what first sparked my interest in River Valley. I think it was Jill. She was one of the girls in the class I taught at church. All I knew was that she went to a different kind of school. I asked her to tell me about it. Then I looked it up on the internet. I talked to her mom. I asked Jill what she liked about it. I asked her if she felt she missed out on the typical high school experience. And I prayed.

Finally it was time to attend the open house and put Joshua on the waiting list. I went knowing that he might not want to do this. He might not want to leave his friends. As we sat through the open house I became more and more excited. This is it. This is where he belongs. I kept looking at him, hoping he felt it too. "Well, I said? Do you want to try? Do you want to put your name in the lottery?" He handed me the paper. I filled it out. He turned it in.

We were 12th on the list and they had four openings. It was only a matter of time. He would get in, but he might have to start at the local high school and move in the middle of the year. But I knew. I knew in my heart that it would all work out. We got our call one week before school started. He was in.

It has already been an amazing experience. He has learned and grown so much this year. He is confident. He is taking pride in his work. He has adjusted well to the independent study. He fits in and has tons of friends. And I do not have that nagging fear in my heart.

Today I got an email from the school. They have just been selected as one of California's Distinguished Schools for 2005.

Today I am extremely grateful that I am a Mom; that I have nagging fears; that I know how to pray.

Congratulations River Valley High School! And thank you for providing an alternative for our children.

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Purse Addiction

Well it appears my purse/bag addiction has slipped beyond knitting and crocheting. I'm now addicted to making paper purses as well. Somebody help me! I've made about 12 of the little ones, helped a customer make 30 and I have plans for many more... The big one... well I never quite finished it. It was my first purse. Personally I thought it would be perfect for a 16 year old birthday party. Unfortunately my 14 year old son that was attending the party didn't think he really wanted to carry the present in the purse. What? I tried to tell him that the girls would love it. It didn't work. Lucky for him (me?) the card he bought didn't fit inside. Since then he has said he would've taken it....but the card didn't fit. I'm not sure I'm believing that story, but he says it with such sweetness and sincerity. It's so much nicer to believe him. Posted by Hello

All products used are Close To My Heart
Large purse - Flower Power Paper Packet
Small Purse
Smokey Plum texture paper along top
Plum Mist Cardstock for handle
Ink - Smokey Plum, Plum Mist and Sweet Leaf
Stamp Set - April Stamp of the Month D1091 Groovy


I love it when I finish a project. All the paper trays are labeled and organized. Woo Hoo. I am so glad that I keep the paper in the plastic bags or folders. I couldn't believe how dusty some of it was!! I know I'm a freak, but all night long I kept walking by and admiring how great the shelves look. Sooo... I finished re-labeling the stamp pads and the papers.... what next??? Posted by Hello

Monday, April 18, 2005

Ok, so I just found this picture on my camera card. Why in the world do you think my husband or son would find it necessary to take this picture? It's not our house they're moving. What memory are they trying to preserve? Are they going to look back at this in 10 years and say "I'm so glad I took a picture of that?" Ok so maybe I have a small idea of why they took it.... I believe they were making fun of the movers... I think they were unimpressed with their uhhhh driving abilities. Posted by Hello
Here are my colors for the top-down childrens sweater and the beginning of the collar. The yarn is TLC Coral Rose, Butterscotch, Lt. Sage and Natural.  Posted by Hello

I Survived and I'm Back

Woo Hoo!! I survived yet another tax season. This time I did it on my own. Normally I hire clerical help to get me through the toughest weeks, but after last years fiasco... I elected to brave it on my own. I can't believe I did it. To tell the truth, I really think it was easier. There's a fine line between spending more time to teach someone else to do your job and doing it yourself. The other benefit was the fact that I always knew where things were...since all the little tax returns passed through my hands... there really wasn't anyone else to blame. Even hubby noticed I was a lot less stressed this year. The best part? My bonus DOUBLED and I have a ton of comp time.

So what's new in my little world?

Well my most exciting news is that Close To My Heart called me and asked me to do a presentation this Thursday at the Riverside national tour. I was very calm and collected when she called two weeks ago. I asked all the right questions and of course I said yes. It wasn't until about a half hour later that I started having heart palpitations and wondered what the heck I had gotten myself into. Since then I've turned in my outline and gotten approval and I finished up my power point. I have a few pictures to add but that's about it. I've practiced my presentation a couple of times and I'm just sure I'm going to sound like a dork...... not that that's really a new thing but this will be in front of a lot of people!

I'm really hoping I do a good job and that they remember me for future events.... yeah... cuz I like the feeling of anxiety attacks... they make me feel alive.... hahaha....

Stamp Room Makeover
We've been on an organizing frenzy at my house (ala Flylady.) Now that I've gotten a handle on some of the clutter and I wouldn't be embarassed for someone to drop in on me.... I'm giving the stamp room a mini makeover. I bought new tablecloths, finished labeling all the new stamp pads that I got ohhhhh ummmmm 8 or 9 months ago. (ouch that hurt to admit!). I finally found a successful way to label the paper shelves. Third times a charm. All the other silly tags kept coming off. Now I have cute little key tags hanging off the shelf with a little heart punch of the corresponding color on it... ok so all the tags are up and half of them have the little heart on them. What did you expect? Perfection? I'm going to try and finish it tonight.

I started on my top down knitted children's sweater for class. Since my child is 14, it wouldn't have been my first preference for a project, but now that I started it, I think it's going to be fun. At first I couldn't think of anyone to give the sweater too, but now I have a list of possible recipients.

Well I better run... I'm off to post some photos!

Friday, April 01, 2005

Not geeky enough

I have come to the conclusion that I'm too geeky and just not geeky enough.

I've been blogging since August of 2001. Of course I didn't really know that it was called a blog back then. Over the years I've mentioned it a few times to different friends and they just look at me like I'm from another planet. Sometimes they'll even ask "What's a blog?" But most of the time it just ellicits blank looks. I think it's a combination of not understanding the need to write and not understanding the internet.

My friends don't have pda's, jumpdrives or blogs. They call me when they have computer problems (or they call me from the other room when their husbands have computer problems.) It's easy to begin thinking that you are the super geek of the neighborhood.

But then I get online and I know that my pda is hopelessly outdated. I'm forced to use simple tools to set up web pages and post my blog. I don't have time to keep up with all the cool things you can do. I haven't taken the time to really learn html and all the other things that seem to end in "L." I just stumbled onto podcasts and a bunch of other fun new things and I want to belong. I want to increase my super techie geekdom....

But then I remember that I'm a boring conservative mom who knits, crochets, stamps, scrapbooks, carries a pda, posts a blog (or two), works full-time, goes to church, reads books, wants to write a book and is hopelessly addicted to the internet.

I think I'm caught in the middle between two different worlds. This might be more unsettling for me if it didn't seem to be such a lifelong habit. If I remember correctly I was the girl in high school who took computer programming and had classes with the "smart" kids. I played sports with the jocks. I cheered with the socialites and I went to church with the goody two-shoes.

I guess I better get going. I need to post my entry to my blog, back it up on my jump drive, check my todo list on my pda, block my latest knitting project, check on my sick kid, read my scriptures, scrapbook my memories, bake a casserole, surf the internet and get back to work.