Sunday, January 30, 2011

Baby, It's Cold Outside

I made this layout during a Club CK 1-Hour Challenge back in early December.  The theme for that particular week was to use lyrics to a holiday song on a layout.  I made a quick photo collage using Photoshop Elements 7.  Using the collage made it super easy to finish this page in just under 60 minutes, especially since I created it last year!  All I had to do was sharpen my photos and drop them into the collage. 

I love these challenges for a couple of reasons.  First, sometimes it is the only layout I get to work on during that week.  Second, sometimes it forces me to work outside of my comfort zone.  Finally, you can win prizes!  I was actually a random winner for that week!  Who doesn't love to win free stuff?  If you are not a member of  Club CK you should check it out.  Basic membership is free and gives you access to the club forums, idea gallery and fun contests such as the 1-Hour Challenge. 

Here are the page deets:  The patterned paper, chipboard snowflakes and adorable snowman sticker are all from Cosmo Crickets Mitten Weather line.  The Tiny Type stickers are Cosmo Cricket as well.  The brown "BABY" letters are American Crafts Foam Thickers, purple pompom border is from Bo Bunny Crafts and purple bling is from Kaisercraft.  I used a brown Sharpie to draw a border around the page. 

Finally, while I am a very pale person, I am not quite as ghostly looking as I appear in the bottom photo!  I swear!

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Lolo's Second Birthday LO

After looking at photos on the computer I have found several layouts that I hadn't shared here yet.  So over the next week or so I will be adding new things here. 

This layout is one I completed a month or so ago. I love Cosmo Cricket and these papers and embellishments from their Pixie-Licious are so bright and cheerful. I used an exact-o knife and a pair of micro tipped scissors to cut the large shape (an idea I got from the Cosmo Cricket blog) and then I matted my 5x7 photo of Lolo picking a flower before adding it to my page.

The chipboard hearts and butterfly tag are also from the Pixie-Licious line and the letter stickers are Cosmo Crickets Tiny Type stickers. The small purple flower brad on the tag is from Making Memories.  The teal-ish ribbon is from Martha Stewart Crafts, purple ric-rak is from Maya Road and the cream crochet trim is from Webster's Pages. I used a black Uni-Ball Signo pen to draw the borders around the patterned paper and the Bazzill Basics cardstock. 

That is the basic details of the page. 

Thanks for stopping by to have a look!


Friday, January 28, 2011

Five for Friday

1.  I am totally addicted to this chai tea concentrate!  I never thought it would be so easy.  If you love chai tea lattes you should give it a try.  I made a single batch on Sunday and then made a double batch on Monday.  Yummy! 

2.  I am much more productive when the internet is down.  Early Wednesday morning the internet went out and after talking to our internet provider we learned their servers went down.  We called 3 times that day to find out it still wasn't fixed.  Thursday morning I called and we got everything squared away.  During the long, nearly painful 24 hour period I made some cinnamon rolls from scratch, mopped the kitchen floor, shoveled the driveway and folded some laundry.  I wanted to make this Honey Caramel Sauce but the recipe was online so I was left thinking about it all day.

3.  Aubrey has declared that she doesn't like cheese...she only likes popcorn (parmesan) cheese.  So recently she started saying "MEAT!" when I try to take her picture.  This girl cracks me up!

4.  I want to have a party...just so I can make a bunch of snacks!  I told James we should have a Super Bowl party and he asked what time the game started...hmmmmm, try about 3 o' the morning!  Not an ideal time for entertaining. 

5.  Is anyone else watching "American Idol" this season?  I vowed not to watch once Simon left but I have been sucked in again.  The new judges are not as bad as I thought they would be.  I will have to see how things go once they get to the Top 12 contestants but for now....I like it. 
Happy Friday everyone!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Yikes! Neglected Blog!

Geez, time is getting away from me!  It has been a busy month around here.  We had to do some scheduling for James to head back to the States from some training in the next couple of months, we went back to Aubrey's favorite mountain hotel...The Edelweiss Lodge and Resort in Garmish-Partenkirchen, Germany for four days and then took a day trip to the Nuremberg Zoo and a mini driving tour around Franconia.  This week has been spent tending to sick babies...Lolo first and now Aubrey.  Lots of tissues and hugs are being handed out along with homemade chicken noodle soup. 

Here are a few photos from this month...
Aubrey trying to catch snowflakes on her tongue, just like "Charlie Brown"; Candles from the Andechs Monestary; A fountain head from Hall, Austria;  A glass of beer from a lunch in Innsbruck, Austria; Truffles (most delicious) from the Dallmayer store in Munich and Lolo waiting for Daddy outside of Dallmayer.

February is my 2 year blogiversary so I am thinking of a few ways to celebrate!  Thanks for taking the time to stop by. 

Monday, January 24, 2011

Have You Heard About Clickin Moms?

About 8 months ago I joined Clickin Moms.  This is an online forum for women who love photography to gather and share information, offer support and ask questions about anything photography related.  I love visiting the forums to learn new things such as setting up for sessions, photo editing, equipment and learning some basics! 

I wish I would have joined earlier but am so glad I am a member now.  While I am by no means a professional photographer I enjoy learning new ways to photograph my own girls to make my photos look better by using natural lighting and even post processing. 

Clickin Moms is offering 20% off any subscription until January 31st!  If you are interested click on the banner in my sidebar and then enter the code FRIEND at checkout!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Where Did December Go?

December just flew by for me!  We were super busy trying to visit as many Christmas markets as possible since James will be deployed again for the holidays in 2011.  So we made the most of the time we had and spent as much time together as we could possibly stand :-)  We went to Esslingen and Ludwigsburg, both near Stuttgart, at the beginning of the month.  Followed by a weekend trip to Oberkirch, a small town near the French border, so we could drive to the Strasbourg, France to see the city and their Noel market.  Finally we returned to Prague to check out the  market there as well.  Prague still remains one of my favorite cities even though the market was smaller than we expected it to be.  The city itself is romantic, has gorgeous architecture and easy to get around, either by foot or by using public transporation.

Esslingen, Germany

Ludwigsburg, Germany

Strasbourg, France

Prague, Czech Republic

The weather was cold and snowy all month with a record 32 inches of snow in Ansbach in just December!  I generally don't mind the snow too much because I don't have to drive in it every day but 32 inches is a crazy amount of snow.  The snow banks at the end of our driveway are insanely high and James and I were concerned that we were running out of places to put all the snow as we shoveled the driveway. 

Our Christmas was perfect this year because James was home!  Aubrey loved all things Christmas and especially the music with Jingle Bells and Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer being her favorites.  Lolo was excited but she most loved making cookies for Santa and sprinkling some reindeer "food" in the snow on Christmas Eve. 

That is our December in a nutshell.  Today will be spent packing up Christmas until next December and getting my house back in order.  I had plans to take it all down this weekend but the pleas of Aubrey convinced me to wait.  I told her it was time to pack up the tree and she said "but I'll be sad" and it just broke this mommy's heart!  I am such a sucker!  She seems to be ready for it to be packed away now so off I go. 

Happy New Year and best wishes for a happy, safe and prosperous 2011!