Friday, May 30, 2008

Friday Feature

I've recently cut my hair and something about that makes me want to wear a different type of earrings from what I used to wear. In the past, it was all hoops- small and conservative. Now I want some dangly ones so I've been searching at etsy and here are some of my favorites.

by Bead Designs by Ellen

by beadmedley

by LeJoulesDesigns

by Beth Cyr Jewlery

by beadstylin

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

National Hamburger Day

Yep, that's right. Today is National Hamburger Day. Not a Congress declared day, but how much more American can you get than a big juicy grilled burger? (Actually it may be German, with roots in Hamburg, Germany, but it has become very American.)

So today is the day to celebrate it. Do you think that you have to wait on the man of the house to do the grilling? Nope, check out all the tips you need to know here at Girls at the Grill.

But if you prefer to let him do the work, grab your camera and take some pictures of the family enjoying the cookout. I made the perfect little paper piecing to commemorate this day and to adorn your scrapbook pages of your grilling event.

It measures about two inches. Look for it in my shop soon. A little tip about working with tiny pieces like this- tweezers. They keep your fingers from getting sticky.

Monday, May 26, 2008

The price paid

Today is Memorial Day. With roots back to the Civil War, this day is more than a three day weekend and a trip to the beach. It is a day to honor and remember those who paid the price for the rest of us to have the freedom to do things like taking trips to the beach and barbequeing with the family. I was fortunate to have the opportunity to visit Arlington Cemetary and all of the Memorials in D.C. in 2005. It was a very sobering experience.

While researching for this post, I came across this very eloquent post. I couldn't express it better, so visit Mueller's blog and reflect on today's true meaning.

Memorial Day Comments
Memorial Day Comments ~ Myspace Comments

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Organizing and decluttering

Hubby and I have spent the last couple of weekends organizing and de-cluttering our stuff. This weekend I worked on my craft room. I will post pics later. Hubby still has to install a shelf for me.
De-cluttering always means stuff to get rid of. I no longer travel with my scrapbook supplies since I have a designated work space, so I am ready to part with my tote.

I just listed it and a Creative Memories organizer on ebay.

Hubby also has a remote control helicopter and a Sony PSP game system up for bids.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Friday feature

Today's featured item from etsy is a really cool fabric journal cover from whimsiedots.

Made to fit a composition book, you can write to your hearts content, and when your journal is full, remove the cover and put it on a new notebook. She has five others in her shop, but this is my favorite. The cool, relaxing colors would
really put me in a reflective frame of mind.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Sweet to eat

May is National Strawberry Month. This was a new one to me. But something worthy to celebrate. Here are some strawberry facts:

* It is the only fruit with its seeds on the outside rather than the inside and one strawberry has about 200 seeds!

* It is a fruit but also a member of the rose family, as its plant has a flower.

* Very nutritious and only 50-55 calories per cup!

Here are a couple of recipes I found at the University of Illinois Extension site. I've gotta try these.

Fabulous Strawberry Muffins
Firm fresh strawberries work best in this recipe, but when the season is over substitute blueberries, cherries or chopped peaches.

2 1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cup buttermilk
1/3 cup melted butter
2 eggs, slightly beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 pint fresh strawberries, hulled and chopped
Additional sugar for topping

Pre heat oven to 400°F. Spray muffin tin with nonstick cooking spray or line muffin cups with paper cupcake liners.

On a large bowl combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt, stir well until all ingredient are well blended.
In another bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, butter, eggs and vanilla. Make a well in the middle of the dry ingredients and pour liquid mixture in and the strawberries.

Using a large spoon, gently fold ingredients just until moist do not overmix.

Spoon the batter evenly into 12 muffin cups. Sprinkle each muffin with about 1/2 teaspoon sugar, if desired.

Bake 20 to 25 minutes.
Makes 12 muffins.

Strawberry Banana Power ShakeThis is a great breakfast shake. It is quick and nutritious. Eliminate the jam, if desired and use an additional 1/2 cup strawberries.

1 cup skim milk
3 tablespoons wheat germ
1 tablespoon strawberry jam
1/2 cup sliced strawberries
1 small very ripe banana
4 ice cubes

Monday, May 19, 2008

Honor Grads and Dads

I just wanted to post a reminder that etsygreetings street team is having a buy 3 get 1 free promo until May 31. So.. get your graduate a card, get one for Dad (Father's Day is fastly approaching), and get a couple of birthday cards or all occasion cards to stash for those last minute emergencies. Here are a couple of new Father's Day cards I listed in my shop this weekend.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Armed Forces Day

Today, the third Saturday in May, is Armed Forces Day. Proclaimed by President Truman in 1950, the day combines the separate branches' celebrations into one day. It is a day to honor and thank our armed forces for what they do for us.

I think sending cards to soldiers is a nice way to do this and I hope I can find some time today to make a few cards to send cards to soldiers. Maybe you can do the same. If you do, post links in the comments section. I'd love to see them.

Be careful how you go about sending cards. I was dismayed to find this snopes articled about the Christmas cards to Walter Reed hospital. I got that email. I didn't send cards but would have liked to. It makes sense though, you can't just randomly send cards to "any soldier." The snopes article list some other ways to show your support.

I also searched for some projects that appear to be legite. I found these two sites:

Friday, May 16, 2008

Friday feature

This week's features focus on the two national holidays celebrated yesterday.

Honor the police officer in your life with this great memo board by Kayskrafts

It would make a great Father's Day gift if the man in your life is an officer.

The next item is absolutely adorable. They are totally calorie and guilt free. You can display them and celebrate chocolate chip day all year! These crocheted chocolate chip cookies by lubee are a hoot!

These push pins by rebeccascards are equally adorable and also calorie and guilt free! What a great way to enjoy some chocolate!

Thursday, May 15, 2008

National Chocolate Chip Day

On a lighter note (from my previous post) today is National Chocolate Chip Day. Well... it's not a "National" Holiday as it has no Congressional proclamation but nonetheless, a chocolate chip is certainly worthy of celebrating. The vast majority of my well used recipes involve a chocolate chip- cookies, cakes, muffins. MMM.. and don't forget chocolate chip pancakes and trail mixes. Oh, and how about a handful of plain chocolate chips for snacking? (I've found evidence of my hubby doing this when he has a sweet craving.)

How about celebrating chocolate chip day by sharing with a friend? Cookie mixes in a jar are always a nice gift.

For this recipe (from you will need a jar that holds around 1 quart or 1.130 litres.
If your jar is airtight add the ingredients directly otherwise place them into
an airtight or ziplock bag and attach the recipe card instructions.

Jar Ingredients:
1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup white sugar
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
Combine the flour, baking soda, white sugar, and the chocolate chips. Place 1/2 of
the mixture in a clean quart sized glass jar, and pack firmly. Place the brown
sugar on top, again packing firmly. Place the remaining flour mixture on top. Cover
with a lid.

Tag Instructions:
Empty contents of jar into a large bowl. In separate bowl combine 3/4 cup of
butter, 1 1/2 eggs, and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Beat until creamy. Add to dry mixture.
Drop by tablespoonful onto an ungreased cookie sheet, and bake in a preheated 375
degrees F (190 degrees C) oven for 8 to 10 minutes. Makes 2 dozen.

Here's a cute little tag I made that would be great to adorn your jar.

Instructions for tag:

Gather some paper scraps.
Make tag approximately 4 in by 2 1/2. Use your die cut machine or hand cut a tag.
Cover tag with patterned paper.
Trim two strips the width of your tag with zig zag scissors ( or any decorative edge you prefer.)
Tear a strip of paper from a second patterned paper scrap.
Adhere decorative strips and adhere torn piece over those.
Stamp bracket.
Add die cuts, flowers, chipboard shape, whatever suits your fancy, to the left corner.
Spell "enjoy" with stickers.
Punch hole in top and tie on matching ribbon.

Now tie it to your gift in a jar!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

National Peace Officers Memorial Day

Law enforcement- very necessary and often unappreciated. The world is full of sick, evil people. Some of us choose to sit behind the blinds and believe they don't exist, while some of us deal with these people every day. Being a law enforcement or peace officer calls for great sacrifice, or sometimes one's life. Just check here for some of the numbers.

President John F. Kennedy made this day, May 15, National Peace Officers Memorial Day in 1962. Remember to fly your flags at half staff.

I think the following appropriately sums up an officer's life.


First they take ... the oath.

then :

They take ... it in stride when people curse at them and call them foul names.
They take... a second job sometimes to make ends meet and support their family.
They take ... time to stop and talk to children.
They take... your verbal abuse while giving a ticket which was really deserved.
They take ... on creeps you would be afraid to even look at.
They take ... time away from their family to keep you safe.
They take ... your injured child to the hospital.
They take ... the graveyard shift without complaint because it's their turn.
They take ... their life into their own hands daily.
They take... time to explain why both your headlights have to work.
They take... the job no one else wants -- telling you a loved one has died.
They take ... in sights that would make you cry. Sometimes he cries too, but they take it anyway because someone has to.
They take ... memories to bed each night that you couldn't bear for even one day.
They take ... time to explain to their family why they can't make the ball game their child is in and why they have to work on the holiday when other parents are off.
Sometimes... They take a bullet.
And yes, occasionally ... They take a free cup of coffee.
If they are lucky ... They take retirement.
Then one day they pay for all that has been taken ...and hopefully, God will take them.

Written by Texas police officer as a tribute to his brother, Police Officer Rodney Kendrick, who died in the line of duty....July 2001

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Mother's Day

Mother's Day is tomorrow. Did you get Mom a card? Or will you be putting one together at the last minute? Here's some inspiration for you if you need it. I made this one for my mother-in-law.

If you don't have photo corners on hand, don't sweat it. Here's a tutorial for the notched kind.

National Pet Week

May 4-10 is National Pet Week. Here's our girl- isn't she beautiful?
I have special plans to scrapbook a page about her or even do a framed page for a wall display, but I haven't gotten to it yet. Knowing this is pet week has me thinking about pet inspired creations.

Do you need some inspiration?
Scrapbooksetc has some ideas:

Or how about some cards with some cute pet images? I discovered these pet stamps by My Favorite things while blog surfing this week. Jen at iheart2stamp made some cute cards with them.

Stamp Owl's Studio also has some cute dog cards. So surf around, find some inspiration and honor your pet with a layout or card

Friday, May 9, 2008

Friday feature

Since yesterday was Have a Coke Day, I went searching at Etsy to see what Coke related items I could find. Here are two of my favorites.

This Coke candle by jotaysgel is a unique gel candle. It even has ice cubes. When you burn up the candle, you'll have a Coke glass to keep.

The next find is a flower necklace made from a recycled Coke can. You'll find this and other cool pieces of Coke jewelry at Made From the Heart.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

HAVE a Coke Day

Coca-cola was invented May 8, 1886, in Atlanta, Georgia. Learn more about its history here. May 8 is National Coke Day. Coke has become not only a drink, but a whole collectible thing. Items and items of Coke paraphernalia exist for the collecting. There are even Coke scrapbooking items. Take a look at this altered clipboard I received a couple of years ago in a swap.

Isn't it cute? It adorns my scrapbook room. Speaking of altered clip boards, here are a couple of tutorials for making your own.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

National Teacher Week

The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires. ~William Arthur Ward

Yesterday was National Teacher Day, which is now observed on the first Tuesday of May. This entire week is National Teacher Appreciation Week. Don't worry that yesterday has passed. You can still send your favorite teacher a thank you by the end of the week. You can also participate in a great project to be unveiled next year. Send an e-card or regular card to the Teacher Thank You Card project.

I love an opportunity to make a handmade card and brighten someones day with it. Here are a few details from the press release.

To contribute to the Nation’s Largest Teacher Thank-You Card Project, individuals can visit and send a free e-card or post a video thank you. Thank-you cards can also be mailed to: The Nation’s Largest Teacher Thank You Card Project, c/o NEA, P.O. Box 66458, Washington, D.C. 20035. The cards collected will become part of a larger-than-life mural measuring approximately 8 feet tall and more than 50 feet wide that will be unveiled for the first time during a high profile event in May 2009.

For more info on National Teacher week, visit these sites:

If you need some inspiration for a quick card to send to the project, here's a thank you card I created based on a design I found at Hero Arts.

Sunday, May 4, 2008


I missed posting a daily quote last month. I guess the daily blogging thing is not for me, even when all I had to do was post a quote. Anyway, I'm still doing my best to keep it going and keep it interesting.

By my calculations I owe you seven quotes. So here they are. These will complete my thirty favorite quotes.

The earth laughs in flowers. Ralph Waldo Emerson

Time is too slow for those who wait,
Too swift for those who fear,
Too long for those who grieve,
too short for those who rejoice it, but
for those who love, time is eternity. - Henry Van Dyke

Do not go where the path may lead,
go instead where there is no path and leave a trail. Ralph Waldo Emerson

Happiness is not the absence of conflict, but the ability to deal with it. Unknown

Everything is always okay in the end, if it's not, then it's not the end. Unknown

God gave us memories, so we would have roses in December. Unknown

Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.
Albert Camus

Saturday, May 3, 2008

National Scrapbooking Day

Yep! Today is National Scrapbooking Day. This craft/hobby got so big, it has its own day. Here are a few links where you will find sales, crops, and events for this day.

National Scrapbooking Day

Creating Keepsakes

Two peas

Scrap Girls

Feel free to add to my list by leaving a comment, especially if you have your own challenge or event at your blog!

Friday, May 2, 2008

Friday feature

Today's feature is a unique home decor find. Do you like nature? dragonflies? silver? Put them all together and adorn your light switch with this awesome cover sold by ArtbyTR

You'll also find switch plate covers in brass and copper. Go check them out. Great wedding, housewarming, or Mother's Day gift.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

National Day of Prayer

National Day of Prayer was created in 1952 by a joint resolution of the U.S. Congress and signed into law by President Harry S. Truman. It is observed on the first Thursday of May every year and is set aside to pray for our nation. No better time to pray for our nation than now. More information and ideas for prayer can be found at this site -
I want to focus on prayer itself and HOW to pray. It is something I struggle with as a Christian and I'm sure others do too. Prayer is communication with God. It can be as easy as having a conversation with God. But don't just tell him what you want and what is wrong, remember to praise him. Remember also to be still and LISTEN. That is probably the most difficult part for me. A true conversation involves both and listening is as important as talking.
We should pray everywhere (1 Timothy 2:8) but the best place to pray is where we can be alone with God (Matthew 6:6). We should always ask forgiveness for sins and iniquities in our heart hinders our prayers. James 4:3, Matthew 5: 22, 24. When we ask for something, we should ask in faith and believe our prayers will be answered. (James 1: 6,7).
The best example of how to pray was given by Jesus our Lord and Savior. Matthew 6:9-13. Our Father, which art in Heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done in earth as it is in Heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil, For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.
It's all in there. Repentance, making your heart right (as we forgive our debtors), asking for your needs (daily bread) and praise. Remember to say a prayer today, and every day, wherever you are, for our nation.

Oddly enough, I got this in an email today. John Wayne talks about values and prayer.