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February 2008
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April 2008

Another step forward...

Is it really Monday again?  It seems like it's been a year since last Monday at the same time that it feels like it was just yesterday.  As Steph said to me last night, I think we can just celebrate the fact that March is over and focus on moving on.  Sounds like a plan to me!

As promised, the layouts I worked on at Mel's house Saturday night.  One each from last year's Cancun and South Africa trips.Cancun_beaches


Melody can attest to my pickiness on the Lion Park layout, since the final layout bears no resemblance to what I had when I left her house the other night... lol.  I had a terrible time trying to make this work because the brochure was throwing it off but there was no way I was leaving out the brochure.  Anyway, not my favorite layout ever (but I love that lion stamp... so cute!) but I'm finally happy with it.

Can we start a petition to bring Nando's from South Africa to the US?  The picture on top is totally making me crave a chicken pita with garlic peri peri sauce.  Man they had good food down there.  Sigh.

Successful attempts at distraction.

I'd like to thank Melody for helping distract me a ton this weekend.  And the Colorado Avalanche.  And retail therapy.  I figure the best way to work through things like this... to get on with life... is to do just that.  Live.  Refuse to feel guilt for doing things and feeling happiness or joy.  I still have my moments where I think I"ve got it together and suddenly there's a gut punch of grief, but I can pull it together.  I can be grateful for the time I got to spend with Ben.  I just put all the pictures I had taken of him on a CD to take to Rick and Erin; there were over 500 of them.  I am blessed to have so many wonderful memories and I'm grateful for the faith that allows me to believe that I'll see Ben again... that in the next life he'll still be a part of our family.  That he has some doting grandparents and a couple of fluffly little white licking machines to keep him company until then.  So with that, I'm going to attempt to return to normalcy.  It's going to be a different normal going forward and I'm sure it will take time for all of us to adjust, but one step at a time, right?

Step one.  Get together with a friend on Friday night and watch a sweet hockey game.

Blog_pine_needles_splurgeStep two.  Retail therapy.  We have this really awesome fabric / sewing store here called Pine Needles.  I went for the first time on Saturday with Melody.  I was expecting just some cool fabric, but this store is beyond awesome.  They have tons of samples, patterns, kits... suddenly I, who am not really a sewer (despite ownership of a sewing machine), was salivating over all these projects.  My will to resist crumbled and I walked out with one kit, two patterns and supplies to make them and a few extra fat quarters.  I think it's time to learn to thread a bobbin without having to pull out the instructions each time.

Mel, Angelina and I had dinner at the Village Bakery and then went back to her place to scrapbook.  I'll post layouts tomorrow :)

Blog_ugh_snow Sunday - this is what I woke up to.  Sigh.

Step 3:  Do stuff.

After church I busied myself whipping up a new recipe I wanted to try. This one is mine - it's been living in my head for a few weeks and I finally made it.  I'll post that soon as well.

Then I completed my first sewing project while watching the Avs game (they'd better suck it up if they're going to end up playing Minnesota in the playoffs.  At least they got a point).  And what's up with Forsberg's injury?  Sigh.  But my project turned out so cute... this was a kit to make a cupcake pin cushion.  I think it's too pretty to stick pins in, but we'll see.


And with that, it's time to finish packing to go to the funeral.

ETA:  I had meant to add this... I wanted to say a huge thank you to everyone who has called, emailed, IM'd and posted... the thoughts and prayers are all very appreciated.  Thank you :)

It's official. This week sucks. Especially yesterday.

Ben_in_va_8Part of me doesn't want to post anything.  I'm in a good non-crying place right now despite the fact that my insides are raw and my eyes are in serious need of cucumbers and cold packs.  But in case you suddenly start seeing lots of art journal pages done in black or a huge increase or decrease of layouts about my nephew (I can't decide yet which it's going to be), or if I just stop posting all together or start posting lots of really lame youtube videos, I need to give warning. 

My sweet, adorable, way too good for this world nephew passed away yesterday (dang it.  there go the tears again).  It was totally unexpected.  Totally sudden.  Totally wrong.  But it happened.  And it sucks.  My heart goes out to Rick and Erin - I don't know how they're even able to keep breathing right now.  We're waiting to hear the cause - probably meningitis.

So yeah.  I already miss this kid like crazy.  Thank goodness for faith.  It's all that's holding us together right now. 

Is it Spring yet?

Our forecast today includes rain and I'm hoping that means that Spring is on the way :)  Thinking of warmer weather, I thought of this layout (although it looks better in person... the scanning is kind of off).  I did this one a few months ago and never posted - saving it until now... it's about time for the cherry blossoms again in DC.  This is from the year before last when I was still in VA and my friend Mary Jane and I went down to the Mall for the Cherry Blossom Festival.  It's soooo gorgeous when the trees are all in bloom.  We were there on the peak day too.


Is this #386 on the list of things I miss?  I lost track :)  Maybe it's time to do some Utah layouts.

I kind of have a thing for polenta.

My mom's reply when I told her about the polenta related dish I made for Easter dinner?  "What's polenta?" I'm going to have to educate her next time I'm home. 

Monday, I was on Tastespotting again (which is always so bad for me when I'm trying not to cook) and I found this. Polenta Lasagne.  As if I wasn't going to make it.  The question was only, how soon?  It takes quite a bit of prep time, however, so last night I ate leftover curry while I was cooking everything.  I put the whole thing together and left it in the fridge.  Tonight when I got home from work I popped it in the oven.  It smells delicious and tastes even better.

I made a few changes to the recipe (as usual... lol) like using half the olive oil, doubling the tomato paste, leaving out the onions (I hate onions) and I also left the capers and sun-dried tomatoes out of the polenta.  I'm not a huge fan of cooking with either of them so I didn't bother to get any.  I'm sure that I sliced the polenta differently than you were supposed to, but it worked.  Oh yeah - key part.  I really wanted meat in this so I added some italian sausage to the dish.  Soooo good.  Here are a few photos to whet the appetite. :D


You could probably just used pre-made pasta sauce, but I really love the freshness and flavor of the homemade sauce combined with the fresh baby spinach.  I think this dish is going to rank right up there with the gorgonzola sauce and gnocchi.  Only this is much less fattening.  lol.

Looking forward to leftovers.  And now, back to the 2nd period of the Avs game. :D

Staying up way too late on a weeknight for no good reason.

I had absolutely no intention of staying up past 11 tonight (last night?).  But when by 10:40 I had only just finished getting the pictures edited and printed, it was probably a lost cause.  Of course I got started late seeing as how I had to watch the Avs game, right?  (They won - sweet!  And I needed the time on the treadmill while I was watching.  I really needed it.  Melting Pot anyone?)  Anyway, once I got going on this one I couldn't really stop.


I also originally had no intention of making this layout an homage to Making Memories... lol.  But it just happened that just about every time I found something that I thought went with the layout, that's who made it.

Blog_city_drawingOh yeah.  I guess this is also to blame for the fact that I'm still awake.  Allow me to explain (this is going to be stream of consciousness... translation: long, convoluted and possibly incomprehensible). 

When I first decided what pictures I wanted to scrapbook tonight, I started thinking about this stamp that I used to have from way back when I subscribed to the Magic Scraps kit club.  If you even know what I'm talking about I'm shocked and impressed... lol.  But one of the kits came with an urban skyline rubber stamp.  Of course, that stamp was purged who knows how long ago so I started playing around thinking maybe I could re-create it.  At first I thought this was just scratch, but then I started thinking that maybe I was really going to go with this so I got totally into it.  Then I finished it (note the satellite dish. lol.) and realized that the look and feeling was totally wrong for my pictures.  So yeah.  That's kind of a random tangent.  But I like my little picture :)

And with that I'm going to bed now.  Seriously.

Oh yay. It's Monday.

I really didn't feel like leaving the weekend behind this morning, can you tell?  It didn't help that I had an early meeting at work to go over the new organization that my new position is a part of.  But that means I get to leave earlier, right? 

So last night, aside from eating a delicious Easter dinner and getting sucked into watching The Princess Diaries, I did another layout.  This is using pictures that Erin posted from going to Build-A-Bear after they got the ultrasound.  Ben is sooooo cute helping to make a bear for his new baby sister.


I love that I've been using stuff I've had for a while as well as some newer toys and I'm really enjoying doing more graphic and minimalist pages.  At this rate, though, it's going to take about 87 years to get through my patterned paper stash :-P

At least it's 6 more days until Monday again, right?

Happy Easter!

It's a quiet one here... I just got home from church.  It doesn't feel quite like Easter to me, but I think that's because I'm used to church meetings where they do big Easter Cantatas with the choir.  We just had regular meetings, but it was very nice.

So, as promised, a recap from last night's birthday celebration.  The Melting Pot was fabulous.  Lots of delicious food and it was fun to hang out with everyone.  Here's a quick overview in pictures:


After dinner, most of us headed back over to Mel and Vic's where we indulged in very small pieces of birthday cake, played and chatted.  Most of the guys took off to watch the Jazz game and then Mel and I talked Stampin' Up for a while and we watched the first half of Pirates (the first one) before we decided to call it a night.  The rest of the pictures are here.

With that, off to enjoy the rest of Easter :)

It's birthday time!

Happy Birthday Melody!  Getting ready to take off to celebrate, but thought I'd post the card I made for Mel.  I had so much fun making this one...


And the inside...


Of course since we're headed to the Melting Pot tonight, we'll be seizing the fondue instead of the cupcake, but there will be seizing.  None of us have been before, but we've heard great things about it. 

Off to celebrate!  Pictures tomorrow :)

Jumping on the bandwagon.

Darjeeling_2I've seen several posts recently from people who saw and loved this movie... I was intrigued, so I put it in my Netflix queue.  It came yesterday and seeing as how there was no hockey last night, I watched it immediately.  I loved it.  It's totally strange and quirky, but I loved it.  (Coming from someone who really looked forward to The Life Aquatic and then really didn't like it, except for Seu Jorge who did the soundtrack because he's awesome.)

Good stuff.

Random Wednesday Stuff

Is it Friday yet?  This has been a crazy week already... nutty, even.  And my arms and shoulders are sore.  Is anyone who weighs over 96 pounds capable of doing the crane position in yoga?  I'm determined to master it one day, but I might break something before I achieve that goal.

Melody and I went to one of our LSSs last night for the 2nd Quarter Open House.  We skipped the make and takes, but we did sign up to take a class together in April.  I hardly ever take classes so this should be fun.

On the music front, I mentioned a few weeks ago that I realized I was listening to the same stuff over and over so last week I went on a quest to find some new-to-me music.  For a while I couldn't get my tracks to scrobble on (amazing how quickly I've become addicted to that place) but I got it working again last night.  Now that all tracks are scrobbled, here's the new top 10 artist list for last week:


I really love Beirut.  It reminds me of this group that I saw playing a few times in the Bastille metro stop when I was in Paris a few years ago.  Very Eastern European-esque (although the guy is from New Mexico or something).  I bought a CD from that group in Paris and haven't ever listened to it.  Note to self... get it out and listen!

I found a few more groups last night too... TV on the Radio, Eisley and Cold War Kids (well, Cold War Kids aren't new to me, actually, just finally downloaded their stuff.) 

Hillary_williamsI was checking out Design for Mankind this morning and I found a link to an amazing artist - Hilary Williams.  I'm in love with her work.  Seriously.

I guess that's it, other than the fact that ever since seeing Nicole's pictures from Ephesus, Turkey has been moved up on my must-visit list. It was in my top 10 but it's now a close second to the Spain / Morocco trip I want to take.  Tell me again why I haven't already moved back to Virginia to work for her company?   

#157 on the list of things I miss about home...

...really sweet museums.  Because the Smithsonian museums are pretty awesome.  I really miss being 30 minutes away from the art galleries and the history museums and all the cool stuff to do on the Mall.

I confess, however, that as much as I love the museums, this layout was really just an excuse to use dinosaur stamps (which, after stamping, I outlined with my Copics.  I LOVE those things!).  Despite all justification for the layout, I do miss the museums.  Really.  (Oh yeah; check the sweet bruises on my arm on this picture... lol.  I had forgotten that I was playing hockey when these were taken.)


I stamped T-rex too, but I couldn't find a place to put him so he's stuck to my photo wall right now.  In all honesty, Stegosaurus should come off as well but he was so cute that I left him there.  I mean, triceratops isn't nearly as cool but he had to be there to match the cookie I was eating in the picture, right? 

Dinosaurs are awesome.  Maybe the next time Rick and Erin to come back and visit I can take Ben to the dinosaur experience at Thanksgiving Point. :D

Three Little Fishies

I mentioned that this last weekend I got a bunch of frames 1/2 at Hobby Lobby to frame some canvases.  The first time I went, I just grabbed 3 frames from the 8x10 spot and got them home, unwrapped them and started putting in the small canvases before I realized that the 3rd frame was 8.5x11.  Doh.  I ended up having to go back and get another 8x10, but since I had already opened the other one I couldn't return it.  I decided to save it - I figured I'd eventually have a picture to frame or something, right? 

Eventually ended up being yesterday. I got in the mood to do some painting / collage-y type stuff so I went ahead and did a piece to fit the frame.  I call it Three Little Fishies.  That doesn't sound very serious, though.  Maybe I should name it Three Fish Pondering the Purpose of Life in a Deep Abyss or something else deep and philosophical.


3_little_fishies_side_viewI'm really kind of liking it... especially the background (which would have been even cooler if my modeling paste hadn't been dry. sigh).  I could probably have taken a break from doing yet more fish, but they're really fun to make and I couldn't help myself.  Now I just wish it was bigger :D

More Avs tonight.  The last 9 games are all within the division and I'm hoping Forsberg and Foote get back in the lineup soon... tonight would be nice.  Go Avs!

Another drive-by layout posting.

I finished this a month or so ago but it was bugging me so I pulled it out and messed with it some more this weekend. Pictures are from when Nicole and I went with my buddy Jim on a weekend trip to Venice (March 2005).  While we were there we did a day trip to Verona (which is a very cool place) and on the tour we stopped by Juliet's house.  I mean, it's not a visit to Verona without a seeing the home of a fictional character from Shakespeare, right?

Oh, in case you're wondering about the pictures, there's a tradition that if you touch the breast of Juliet's statue, you'll find true love.  Nicole still swears that the reason she's getting married is because she did it.  Jim is married now too (and I love the picture of him flirting with our tour guide.  She's not the one he married, though, if you were wondering.  lol.).  Maybe there was something to that statue after all.  Can I go back?


I'm still not loving this layout, but I'm tired of messing with it and it's definitely better than it was before.

Right now I'm just hoping the snow we've had this weekend is it.  Seriously.  NO MORE.  That is all.

Thanks Mom.

So I go to get my mail and I have the typical junk, my new Creating Keepsakes magazine, and an envelope from my mom.  Well that was unexpected, so I was excited to open it and see what she had sent me. 


Gee thanks.  That was subtle.  lol.

So aside from that, just a few things that have been making me happy this weekend...


First, I finally got over to Hobby Lobby while frames were 50% off and picked up frames for the fish canvases going down to the lower level.  It's amazing what a difference it makes to have everything framed.

Second, there's nothing like a clean fridge.  I went through and cleaned it all out and then got to the store to get healthy stuff (still on the bridesmaids / hockey diet) and organized it so that it's easy to grab what I need when I'm packing a lunch.

Finally, there was a layout in the new CK that used butterflies that made me want to make something with butterflies on it.  I realized I had pictures from our last trip to Monterey so I printed them out and started playing.  Out came the stamps and the Copics!  I totally lost track of time while I was coloring.  I think now I'll make some Easter cards :)

Christmas in March?

So I'm scrapbooking a little out of season.  It's not the first time, it definitely won't be the last.  I was in the mood to scrap something a little different and I've had these pictures (from our family trip to Germany in 2003) printed out for almost two years; I just needed to do something with them.  This is probably one of the most simple and graphic layouts I've ever done, but I just love the pictures so this seemed like the way to go.  I'm liking the results :) 


Still kind of sticking with the old school theme... punches (!) and some Making Memories and Susan Branch patterned papers from several years ago.  And some stamps, of course!  I love the feeling of using some of this stuff I've had for so long.  It makes me feel better about looking forward to the new Papertrey release tonight :D

Happy Friday!

Developer humor.

Developer_humor So it's lunch time and I happened to be looking out the window at the end of our row when I saw one of our developers getting out of this car, presumably after parking it in this position.  Of course, this isn't his car.  lol.

This would have been seriously blackmail worthy if Kylene had managed to catch it while he was still in the picture... lol.

I love this place. I'm going to be bummed to miss all the antics when I move to the other building next month :-P

Copic love, hockey love.

Over the last few days I've done some research: Google searches, demo videos on YouTube, tutorials... trying to shorten the learning curve with the Copics (okay, so hockey isn't the only thing I'm geeky about.  lol).  I've been playing some more with the blending and I'm LOVING these things!  Here's a layout I finished last night.  I stamped all the flowers and then colored with the markers and cut them out.  I also changed the color of the border of the Making Memories die-cut paper by just running the marker over the original color so it would match my photos and stamped accents.  (I love coloring.  And cutting stuff out. It's very soothing for me.  It even helped my killer headache last night.  Weird, I know).


More proof of Ben's adorableness.  I especially love the picture where he has his finger to his cheek while he's thinking something over.  Speaking of my unbearably cute nephew, today we find out if baby #2 is a boy or a girl!  Yay!

Oh, and something else kind of cool.  I was talking to a lady in our HR department today because I had heard she plays hockey (well actually, I was talking to her because I took a new job at our company last week and I had to give her some paperwork, but after that I asked her about it.  lol).  It turns out that she's currently playing for the same team that I played for in grad school - the Provo Blades.  Their season is almost over, but she's going to bug me in August to see if I want to play next season.  I think I'd like to.  This means, of course, that my daily treadmill routine is going to have to be beefed up and supplemented; if I tried to play hockey right now I'd keel over.  I've been looking for the incentive to get myself in gear, though, and it looks like this might be it!  (Here's hoping that I can stick to my guns :-P). 

Have I mentioned that I love hockey?  Because I do. (And the Avs won 5-2 last night, although holy crow!  What's up with the never-ending stream of injuries?!?  I just hope they get some healthy bodies back on the active roster here soon.)

ETA:  It's a girl!  She's due in July.  I'm so excited!  Congratulations to Rick, Erin and Ben :)

No more buffalo chicken wraps for me.

Never again.  Normally I like to pick up wraps and other quick lunch stuff since I usually bring a lunch to work.  I've had this particular type many times in the last year or so and had decided I was getting tired of it, but I got it one more time when I was at the store a few days ago.  I took half for lunch today and I've regretted it ever since.  It's not food poisoning, but it's probably the next best thing.  (Is there a next best thing to food poisoning?  If so, I've found it!  lol).  Ugh.

So on a happier note, just posting a layout I finished last night.  The pop dots (oh yeah.  keeping with the old school) made the layout a little hard to scan, but you get the idea.  This is from the luncheon we had at the Garden restaurant the before Melody and Vic's wedding (which reminds me... I need to tuck the date on here somewhere).


I also spent a while last night browsing iMixes in iTunes.  I don't get to do that nearly often enough.  I love picking a band that I like (Arcade Fire this time) and then following the trail through the site and finding new music to add to my collection.  I'm enjoying all kinds of new groups.  Different stuff for me, but loving it! 

So much for my cooking ban.

I couldn't resist.  The thought of nuking another frozen dinner was too much to bear so I caved and made beef pad thai.  I probably make this about once a month and I love it.  It's super easy to make if you use pre-made peanut sauce, but I have a hard time finding any that I really like so I've started making my own.  Even doing that, it's still a pretty easy recipe.  It takes me less than 30 minutes including all prep time.  I've had some requests for my sauce recipe, so here it is.  I adapted this from a recipe by Todd Wilbur, but I've made several changes... some to the ingredients and some to the measurements. 


Sometimes I dump the sauce in with the rice noodles and sometimes I pour it over top.  It works both ways. 

Now I need to remember to get more hoisin sauce. :)

I forgot my earplugs.

This is how I know I'm getting old.  I worry about things like earplugs at rock concerts.  Although the fact that I'm still going to rock concerts probably means that I'm not in my dotage quite yet.

Tonight / last night (whatever) was the Linkin Park show here in SLC.  I've seen them twice before (once I was in the pit where we were like 10 feet away from Chester and Mike and it was totally sweet) so I already knew this was going to be an awesome show.  Vic came with me and he loves LP but had never seen them live.  I was excited just to see how much he enjoyed it.  But I'm getting ahead.

First up was a group called Chiodos.  Never heard of them.  I think it's possible that I could like some of their music if heard with proper balance, levels and at appropriate volume.  Either they have a terrible sound tech or they're terrible live.  Or both.  I think my ears were going to bleed if they played any longer.  This is the part where I really missed my earplugs.  Their music seemed to involve a lot of (as in way too much) screaming which I realize is sort of ironic given the fact that I was there to see Linkin Park.  However, LP understands how to make it work (in my opinion, anyway).  And there are other musically redeeming factors when listening to them.  Chiodos heads too much in the Slipknot / Mudvayne direction and I can't stand that.  And now I've officially talked WAY more about them than is warranted.

Coheed and Cambria - I was interested to see them because I like what I've heard from them on the radio.  Their sound tech was better, but they still needed more balance so that it wasn't just loud.  Because it was.  Very loud.  Again, earplugs.  However, there was high entertainment in watching the lead singer / guitarist's hair - he has serious head-banging hair.


I'll be downloading some of their stuff once iTunes lets me update my CC expiration :-P

Finally, Linkin Park.  This is where I didn't even notice that I didn't have earplugs.  They put on such a killer show.  They came on stage and launched right into What I've Done and from there into Don't Stay.  I need to find the entire playlist.  I didn't want to be bothered with writing it down myself (because as usual, I was taking tons of pictures when I wasn't just enjoying the music.  Hard to multi-task at a rock concert). 

A few of the better shots:




The finale of the main set was Bleed it Out and there was an absolutely phenomenal drum solo in the middle.  So cool.  The first encore included In Pieces (I think) and Breaking the Habit.  Then they came out for the final encore - One Step Closer and Faint.  Two of my favorite songs.  Then the final bows... here's Chester:


I think it's possible that this show was even better than the others I've been to.  My ears are still a little sore (but I'm blaming that on the first acts... lol) but it was so awesome.  Just a fabulous show.  I love the absolute high that comes from being in the middle of something like that, you know?  But alas, it's over, and I'm sure as soon as said high wears off, I'm going to crash hard.

So with that, the rest of the pictures are here and I'm going to bed.

A little old school scrapping...

I was going through a box that's been sitting on the top shelf in my scrapbook room when I found these little gems.  I had to laugh.  Punch art used to be so hot.  I was actually pretty good at it if I do say so myself.  I did these for Easter several years ago and then never used them.


Honestly, I still think they're cute.  I might have to work them into a layout somewhere.

Melody ended up not having to work last night, so we got together to shop and scrapbook; our favorite Friday night activity.  (Have to pack in as much of that as we can before she and her family head off to New Mexico.)  I started out with this layout thinking I was going to use the sketch for a call that CK has right now but it just wasn't working so I gave up and did my own thing and I like it much better.  My order of Copic markers showed up today and I got to play with them while I was finishing this up (I used them with the tree stamps).  I LOVE them!  It's going to take me some time to really get a hang of the blending, but I think my first stab was pretty good.  Oh and since I was in an old school frame of mind while I was finishing this afternoon, I used vellum.  I can't remember the last time I pulled any of that out.

Here's the layout - another one from Africa.  Nicole and I rented a car and drove north to a game lodge near Hoedspruit for our safari and we stayed in a treehouse.  It was sweet!


Oh, and the Avs?  They just beat Dallas this afternoon.  Forsberg had two assists.  Yay!  Now off to get ready for Linkin Park.

I want to be here.

Here as in where I was in this layout.  I did this one about a year and a half ago, but I don't think I've ever shared it.  I was thinking about this trip this morning and totally craving the peace, relaxation and fun of being in Costa Rica.


I'm totally scared of heights, so doing this zipline tour through the rainforest canopy was very hard for me, but  worth it.  Taking that leap of faith to just step off the platform onto nothing was huge.  It was so awesome, though.  I guess I was thinking of this and hoping that the girl who could take that leap is still in there somewhere.  It's time to do it again :) (Although maybe not quite in such dramatic fashion... lol). 

Proof positive of hockey geekiness.

I've mentioned a few times recently that I'm pretty much a total hockey geek when it comes to the Avs (although I have to say that I'm not nearly as hard core or rabid as I've come off lately... ) so I'm going to go all out and share proof.

Exhibit A:


When I said I was a Forsberg fan, I wasn't kidding.  (Although I have nothing on my dad's Guy Lafleur collection.  lol.)  I even managed to get my hands on the Swedish postage stamp where he was featured after he scored the shoot-out goal to win an olympic gold medal for Sweden.  (Oh, and since Foote came back too, his card is there too... autographed even!)  See?  Geek.

Okay.  Done with hockey and moving on.  (For now. I mean, they're playing again tonight so I make no promises... lol.)

Last night I again found myself needing to think and working in my art journal helps me to focus.


I think this one was partly prompted by my recent (continuing and frustratingly recurring) bout of insomnia and the migraine I had all day yesterday.  Possibly they're related?  lol.  After I took this picture I added my list of things that come to mind when I think of being tired.  Again, so cathartic.  I'm really glad I started doing this again.

Just like old times.

Forsberg_returnsPlease.  Like I wasn't going to blog about this today.

Peter looked kind of nervous his first few shifts (naturally), and you could tell his timing was a little off, but for a guy that hasn't played for 10 months, he looked pretty awesome.  He's such an amazing player. 

Hey Steph - remember when we used to get tickets to go see the Caps play any time Phili was in town *just* so we could see Forsberg? (Okay, we totally cheered our Caps, but still.)

Seeing him back on the ice in Denver wearing an Avs sweater, though, was sweet.  Watching him with Sakic and Hejduk... the rest of this season is going to rock. 

On the wedding front, I realized that it would be a good idea if I got some shoes to go with the bridesmaid's dress.  Flip-flops do not look good with formalwear.  So I thought, Steph is addicted to Zappo's and she knows her shoes, so I'll give it a look (and thereby eliminate the need to go to the mall.  Blech.)  The ones I really wanted?  These.  So hot.  I decided, however, that they probably wouldn't look too good with the dress so I ordered these on Monday and they came yesterday.  Holy fast shipping batman!  Anyway, they're perfect.  They're not zebra stripes (and I may go back for those), but they'll work. :)

Aside from hockey and shoes, I'm still wondering when life is going to settle down.  Ever since I moved here, things have been crazy.  Each time I think I'm getting into a groove, something changes.  Personally, professionally... it's all nuts.  I'm now looking at yet another new job here at my company which, if you count the first one that I moved here for, would be my 3rd in just over a year.  I guess I did a little too good of a job researching and compiling a project that I presented to our GM last week since he's one of the ones pushing for me to take this new role.  I'm thinking about it.  I'm not super thrilled about the opportunity, but it's mostly because I like what I'm doing and who I'm working with now and it would be a big change.  But it's a good opportunity.  Maybe better than where I am now.  I'm thinking about it.

One of these photos made me drool, one of them made me giddy.

You decide which is which.  lol.

Choc_banana_springrolls3First - chocolate banana spring rolls.  Thank goodness for my recent self-imposed ban on any form of cooking that requires more than a microwave. (It's for my own good.  Really.)  Must. Stay. Away. From. Tastespotting.


Sakic, Foote and Forsberg together again (recall that I AM a self-admitted hockey geek when it comes to the Avs).  They played together for both of the Avs' Stanley Cups.  Forsberg IS PLAYING TONIGHT!!! (Not that I'm excited or anything).  I watched some video on from his practice yesterday and I can't wait to see him in a game again.

Oh... something else that makes me slightly giddy... I ordered some Copic markers to play with (it took me a while to cave, but ultimately I'm a sucker for some good enabling) and they just shipped.  I'm taking my coloring to a whole new level!  (Don't laugh.  You should see what I did during several months' worth of sacrament meetings with a Beauty and the Beast coloring book and a box of crayons.  I can work the crayons, baby.)

Apparently, my recent layouts have a food-related theme.

I wonder if there's something my inner psyche is trying to tell me.

Another one from hanging out with Mel, her family and our buddy Dustin on my birthday right after I moved here.  Several of these pictures are odd, but that's what happens when a 6-year old gets a hold of your camera :)  I think Angelina actually has a pretty good eye; when she's not taking pictures of plates of uncooked food in Mel's kitchen, that is.  But that's an entirely different post.


My recently renewed addiction to stamping has not yet waned. In fact the sole purpose for using these pictures for a layout was so I could do that cake stamp thing.  There's probably something wrong with that on some level, but I'm not questioning.

I also realized that I've NEVER posted this regularly for this long.  I'm sure it's a phase.  Don't get used to it.

The floor test

So I have to confess that I went over to All My Memories yesterday to see what kind of deals I could score.  It was the first week of their closing sale and I did find some fun stuff.  Of course, the goal here is to actually use said stuff, so I felt like I had to accomplish something today.  Sadly, despite my intentions,I used nothing that I bought.  lol.  But it's a start, right?

So when I'm about done with a page and I can't quite be sure if it needs something more (or less), I realized that I've developed this habit of putting the layout on the floor and staring down at it.  I don't know if it's the perspective or what, but for some reason this helps.


Is it weird that I do this?  I don't know.  Probably.  I'm going to embrace the weirdness, though.  I've decided that as long as I"m going to do it anyway, I'll give it an official name.  So as you may have already guessed, I'm calling it The Floor Test.  Original, yes?

Oh, and here's the layout.  Another one of that adorable Ben kid... from Chuck E. Cheese with Rick and Erin.  I knew as soon as I saw that picture of Rick and Ben eating pizza with such similar expressions and mannerisms that this was going to end up on a layout.


Now I'm craving pizza.

A good dose of humility.

I've wanted to scrap these pictures for a while, but I knew that I needed to be in a certain mood.  For me, it wasn't so important this time to make a pretty page as it was to tell the story of an experience that altered me.


While I was in South Africa last May, I had the chance to go on a tour of Soweto (where Hector Pieterson was shot and where Nelson Mandela lived during apartheid).  There was one part of the tour where we got out of the van and walked, with a resident, through one of the poor areas of the township and visited inside of one of the homes.  I wish I had been able to take pictures that could convey even a fraction of what I saw.  In the top right picture, those are shacks for as far as the eye could see.  It was unbelievable.  Even moreso was the fact that this wasn't the only place where you saw these settlements.  It was amazingly humbling.

I've never appreciated running water and electricity as much as I did after I got back to the hotel.  lol.