Thursday, May 27, 2010

fun plans

These itty bitty spools are part of the stitchalong kit that I'm working on. They're just so adorable I had to stop working to show you.

In a week I'll be with all these great friends...

Doesn't that look like fun? I can't wait. I need to finish some gifties and pack crafting supplies, etc. Meanwhile, the naptime clock is ticking away. Hope you're having a swell day.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

the love dare

Rich and I watched the movie "Fireproof" last weekend. It was not a good movie in many ways*...the acting was obvious, the directing not good. And it wasn't enough that it starred my long ago heart-throb Kirk Cameron. Many times I felt like I was watching a film in health know what I mean.

But the message was beautiful.

Maybe I will suggest skipping the movie altogether and just buying either this book or this one. I bought two copies of "day by day", one each for Rich and me, and I'm really so excited about this.

We have a strong marriage but after 13 years it's easy to take one another for granted, right? I think this challenge will grow our commitment and love for one another and strengthen our faith in God.

What do you say, do you want to give it a try? I dare you!

*I didn't realize when I wrote this that the actors, directors, etc. were all amateurs. Given this, my criticism is a bit harsh. Thanks Sherri for filling me in on the details!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010


Can you guess what I'm working on?

It's a new stitchalong kit!

But I just found an error in how I set up the file for the itty bitty book. It's all wrong and I either have to scrap it all or figure out a way to salvage half. If I do that, I'll have to glue the front of this card to the back of that card...just thinking about it makes my eyes twitch. I'm half tempted to just fix it all and send it to the printer again set up correctly.

Oh well...the good news is that a new stitchalong kit is on its way.

Monday, May 24, 2010

a work in progress

I started this bird collage with an idea in mind but it didn't quite work out for that project. I'm going to finish it and either make it part of something else or maybe just make it a hoop-framed collage.

We're taking it easy this morning...hanging out in our pajamas and lounging about.

Here's a cute story: Last night Alfredo and I were playing "school bus". He was the driver and I was the door. He'd ask "who's next?" and I would name a little friend. When I said "Seth" he said "No, not Seth!" I was a bit surprised so I said "Why not Seth?" and he said "Seth is a 'growed-up'...this bus is for childrens!" Isn't that adorable? In his world, an 8-year-old is a 'growed-up'! 

Friday, May 21, 2010

bright and beautiful

Don't you just love it when something you're making turns out even better than you imagined? This is a gift so I can't show more than this but hopefully you'll see how fun it is.

I'm going to work on it some more this weekend and I'm hoping to work more on my counted blessings project (which, sadly, has been neglected)

The house is such a wreck and naptime is nearly up so I gotta jet. Hope you have a great weekend.

p.s. My goal for next week is a post per day...I'm trying to get back into blogging regularly. I'll try not to post about what I'm eating for lunch (believe me, you don't want to know) but I'll definitely share my desserts. :)


Yesterday I went to the memorial service for my favorite professor. We got there a little early so I took Alfredo on a little tour of my old campus. It's such a beautiful college and being there brought a flood of memories.

For a long time I felt that part of my life was a finished chapter and I haven't spent a lot of time revisiting it. For three of my four years there I dated the same guy. It didn't work out and ended pretty badly. Any memory of my college years was tied to the ugliness of that relationship's bad ending. Somehow yesterday I realized that I needed to let go of all of that and just remember what a really wonderful experience being that young, free, and constantly challenged and inspired was. Maybe it's just growing up a bit or maybe it's having this terrific shift in my life's focus. But what a good feeling it is to really move on.

The service was really wonderful. It was the perfect way to honor him and I'm so glad that I went. Though it made me see the importance of telling people who matter in our life, who made a difference in who we are, just how much we love them for it. I wish I'd told Dr. Garrison.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Dr. Garrison

This is my favorite professor, Dr. Garrison.

I haunted his office hours religiously, hanging out on the English Department floor of Academic Hall in an area my friend Nina and I affectionately called "The Nook". I'd hear him cough or chuckle or make some sort of loud noise (he was never very quiet) Thinking back now, I can't even remember what sorts of pressing matters I would make up in order to spend time with him.

It is so hard for me to believe that someone so animated, so full of emotion and passion, is gone. Where does all that energy go?

I wish I had some way to visit him again. It's been nearly 20 years since I was a student in his class. How can that be? But so much of him has slipped from my memory, leaving just sparkling remnants of who he was. The gleam in his eye when I got something right. The disappointment when I didn't. His fabulous stories and how completely wrapped up he got in retelling them. His chuckle. But more than anything I will remember how much he believed in me. It seemed incredible to me how much value he saw in makes me smile to think of it now.

I took a class with him my senior year called "The Power of the Metaphor"...there were only five other students in this class and it was intense. Every thursday night, for three hours we'd discuss how everything in life is a metaphor. How even the simplest word is a metaphor. He said often "There's a poem in every thing." And his life was spent searching and collecting them.

I wish I could go back now to that nook, waiting to hear him in his office. I would dream up something wonderful to tell him about...something that would engage him in another of his wild stories with expressive hand gestures and loud guffaws. And then I would keep it safe somewhere where time could not go.

Thank you, Dr. Garrison, for all of those office hours. I can't wait to hear your stories again.

Click here to read more about Dr. Garrison. 

I'm back...

And just look at what was waiting for me. These (plus another vase-full) are from just one peony bush! Can you believe my luck? And yes, it is luck. I don't have a green thumb at all!

Poor Alfredo had the worst allergies in California. We drove out to Point Reyes the first day and by the time we got there, the poor baby's eyes were nearly swollen shut.

On Friday we drove out to Lake Tahoe. It was breathtakingly beautiful but oh my goodness, the drive! I looked down once as we were rounding a hairpin turn and I could not see the bottom of the cliff we were hugging. Yikes!

Meanwhile, have you seen this...

makes me almost wish he weren't potty trained.  (from Target)

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

a little break

I'm going to take a little break from blogging while we're in California so I'll see you next week when we return.

Have a good week! AdiĆ³s!

p.s. I'm thinking of putting together kits for you to make this wreath...what do you think?

snack boxes and the garden's pretty ladies

Here's a picture of one of the snack boxes I made. It has a lot of candy, doesn't it?

(The picture from yesterday was my inspiration...not my own creation)

It's surprising how much each little section holds.

And I'm so happy that these ladies have made their appearance. I've been eagerly awaiting them. When I raise the shade in the family room every morning, Alfredo always says (even on the most miserable looking days) "Oh what a lovely day!" and then we talk about how my peonies will be blooming any day. (Except he says "panties!")

This pink one is my favorite...doesn't it look like a fluffy prom dress? I love it!

Okay, back to laundry and packing and getting ready...later today I will update the counted blessings project with two new squares!

Monday, May 10, 2010

getting ready

I have today and tomorrow to get ready for our trip and I have a lot to do. I just loaded up the ipod with movies and games and baby apps to keep him busy on the airplane. He's very excited that he'll get to enjoy his first piece of bubble gum on the flight (he has allergy congestion and I'm afraid the take off and landing pressure is going to really hurt his ears!)

Doesn't the picture above look wonderful? I found it first at Crafty Crow but it's originally from here. I'm going to make one each for Alfredo, Rich, & Omar for the airplane trip.

Do you have any suggestions for small toys for the airplane ride? Any other good traveling with toddlers tips?

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Happy Mother's Day

This is my very sweet mother. I wish you could meet her. Everyone who meets her falls instantly in love with her. And you can't believe the Southern drawl that pours from her. I should give you her phone number just so you could hear it for yourself. (I won't, of course!)

I talk to her on the phone just about every day. Sometimes it's a quick hello, goodbye. Other times we sit and talk for an hour or so. We talk about serious stuff and funny stuff and sometimes not really much of anything at all.

Happy Mother's Day, Momma! I hope you have a wonderful day. I'll be thinking of you all day, counting all the ways you are such a wonderful mother. Thank you for giving me life and then giving my life love.

To all the mothers out there, I hope you feel the love and appreciation of your children today. And to everyone else, call your mom! Yes, now!

Friday, May 7, 2010

feeling reflective

Here's a picture of Alfredo from about 2 years ago, just a couple of months after we first met him. I remember that day so clearly. And I remember that little jacket with a tiny lion on the pocket. He would point to it and roar. And he sniffed those daffodils with his nose all scrunched up so funny. And just look at that bit of dribble coming down his chin. Is it any wonder that we fell in love with him?

We're heading to California next week for a visit with Alfredo's family. Everyone is really excited. Especially Omar. He's doing really well here and he's happy. But I think he's homesick too. I worry about him not having any friends here. A trip back home will do him a lot of good.

Alfredo is a little worried about the trip, asking directly if he's coming back. It breaks my heart to think of how terrifying an airplane ride is to this little guy. And I ache whenever my mind wanders to that night when I left him. The sound of his screams are etched into my memory...just the thought of them makes my throat swell so much that I can hardly swallow.

And when I think back to how sad I was then without even a hope of being where we are now. I shake my head in disbelief.

A year ago this week, I went to California with my brother and two sisters to bring Alfredo home with us. Six months later, when it was time for him to go back to live with his father, instead his father came here to live. Isn't it an amazing story?

Monday, May 3, 2010

wedded bliss

Today is our anniversary...13 years ago we exchanged vows to love, honor, and respect for all the days of our lives. Happy Anniversary, Rich!

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Happy Birthday, Rich!

Today is my sweetheart, Rich's birthday! 
Happy Birthday!

(this picture is from a couple of years ago but I just love that look on his face)

Leave a comment here if you want to wish him a happy day, too.