May 2012 archive

Now, you know.

One tiger was rescued from a facility in California where a man had not taken care of the animals he had taken in. When authorities raided his compound, they found over 30 adult Tigers dead and decomposing and more than 50 dead cubs in a chest freezer. Since the man did not sterilize or use contraception with the animals, he would pull the newborn babies and throw them in the freezer.

wild animal sanctuary

Now, you know.

Visit The Wild Animal Sanctuary for more information on how you can help rescue Tigers, Lions, Bears and other magnificent animals from abuse by stupid people.

Me…in this moment

big picture class

Mother, wife, graphic designer, friend, photographer, chef, nurse, travel coordinator, volunteer, blogger, daughter, stay-at-home mom, scrapbooker, maid, stain remover, Christian, therapist, font lover, ice skater, cookie baker, listener, book lover, explorer, creator, faithful, dog trainer, big sister, craft director, organizing specialist, dishwasher, taxi driver, ruler of the broom, house painter, observer…

Favorite part of the day…when the house is quiet and everyone is settled down for the night. It’s a time to unwind from the hectic day. The girls don’t have to be asleep; they can be in their room for “quiet time” or watching a movie together.

Loving…staying at home and not having to commute to work. This is much less stressful!

Longing for…more time with my husband.

Inspired by…photography, creative blogs and Pinterest. My blog is called:

Dreaming of…vacation, mini-vacations and road trips…anywhere! I just want to explore.

Needing…time with my husband, support, nurturing and love.

When I was 16-years-old…I thought I was going to move to NYC and become a famous fashion designer.

Guilty pleasure… Real Housewives of Orange County reality show, and Project Runway fashion reality show (love Heidi, Michael and Nina).

The lessons I keep learning…let it go and just breathe.

You can never have too many…open-toed shoes, or colorful nail polish, or travel magazines.


big picture classes

Tag "in the moment" at Sweet Shoppe Designs.



Before I left printing (just a short month ago) I would talk to many people during the day. From helping a customer at the counter pick out business cards, or on the phone letting them know when their job will be ready. But, primarily, I would communicate via e-mail. I mean, e-mail, a lot. It’s so much easier to send a quick e-mail to a client rather than pick up the phone and possibly have to leave a message.

Now, I tend to talk to very few people during the day. Parker is home with me so the conversation is more like instructions. “Parker, please pick up your room,” or “Parker, get down from there!” And, with her responding with, “Why do I always have to clean my room?!”, or “But I like it up here.”

Oh, then there is the conversations I have with the dog, Thor. “Bah!” means “stop doing that.” I don’t think he’s listening…

I still e-mail a lot during the day but it’s usually to people I haven’t even met. It could be business revolving around the Skate Club or answering e-mails that come in from my blog.

One thing I do everyday is text. Again, it’s easier to ask a simple question or send a quick comment rather than pick up the phone. My friend, Katrina (a.k.a. text buddy) and I will text several times a day. I also text my sister and mom. My sis and I have had whole conversations via text. Hubby would argue, in this case, it would be easier to pick up the phone. I argue that texting keeps me young and hip, not an old geezer who uses (gasp) a phone for talking.

Alex has learned to use my cell phone. We don’t even own a land line anymore, so it’s important for her to know how to unlock my phone and dial 911 if necessary. But, what she really loves is texting her friend (my text buddy’s daughter) all the time…on my phone! I created a monster.

What does that say about our society that we have so little verbal contact with people? For someone like me who never liked talking on the phone, it’s glorious. I would say it’s one of the greatest inventions, right behind the polio vaccine and the flush toilet.

I do love dinner time. That is when we all sit down at the table as a family and talk about our day. Who in Alex’s group is being a drama queen today, and what homework is due. We talk about skating and other things. That is one place where cell phones are ignored and we just talk.


big picture classes

Sports photography

I love macro and nature photography. Hubby says that is because it doesn’t involve people. He could be right…

This weekend Alex performed in the Skate Club’s ice show. I took my camera to hone my skills a little. And I had a friend who is a pro to get pointers from. Always valuable. Thanks Kat!

sit spin

Alex at warm-up practicing her sit spin


Alex during dress rehearsals

caydee denney and jogn coughlin

Parker getting her show program signed by U.S. skaters Caydee Denney (pictured), John Coughlin, Morgan Bell & Mariah Bell

figure skaters

Denney and Coughlin on the ice

Caydee Denney and John Coughlin are the 2012 U.S. Figure Skating Champions and the Club was honored to have them skate in the show. As always they performed moves that were crowd pleasers!

In the end I really enjoyed trying to get the best shot of figure skaters moving at high speed, not to mention in low light conditions, but I think I will stick with non-moving subjects. I’ll keep practicing though because I have one competitive figure skater in the house and another who thinks she wants to join her sister on the ice. So, I will need to take plenty of pictures and practice, a lot!


watches, movado

I am not good to watches. I am kind of notorious for losing them.

I have had many expensive watches, of which I have lost over the years.

I lost a diamond watch  in Las Vegas Glenn gave me. It had a bad clasp. I lost another expensive watch (Glenn also gave me) on an airplane to Missouri. And there is a third watch that I misplaced­ — who knows where it is today. This is why I told Glenn to only buy me cheap watches.

But, on my last day at the print shop, my boss, Scott gave me this watch. It’s a Movado. In the watch world…it’s a pretty cool watch.

I love this watch because it’s simple, elegant and beautiful…totally my taste.

Every time I wear this watch I am reminded of my friend & co-worker, Scott’s late wife, Kari. I remember the 14 years working beside her everyday and sharing our lives. We laughed, and sometimes until we cried.

This watch makes me happy and sad at the same time. It’s a constant reminder of the good and the worst day of my life.

I will always cherish this watch for what it represents – I was blessed to have had Kari and Scott as, not only great bosses to work with, but also as friends.

And, yeah, from what I understand, it’s expensive. I hope I don’t lose it!


big picture classes

Simple advice for faithful living.

faithful living

An Angel says, “Never borrow from the future. If you worry about what may happen tomorrow and it doesn’t happen, you have worried in vain. Even if it does happen, you have to worry twice.”

1. Pray
2. Go to bed on time.
3. Get up on time so you can start the day unrushed.
4. Say No to projects that won’t fit into your time schedule, or that will compromise your mental health.
5. Delegate tasks to capable others.
6. Simplify and unclutter your life.
7. Less is more. (Although one is often not enough, two are often too many.)
8. Allow extra time to do things and to get to places.
9. Pace yourself. Spread out big changes and difficult projects over time; don’t lump the hard things all together.
10. Take one day at a time.
11. Separate worries from concerns. If a situation is a concern, find out what God would have you do and let go of the anxiety. If you can’t do anything about a situation, forget it.
12. Live within your budget; don’t use credit cards for ordinary purchases.
13. Have backups; an extra car key in your wallet, an extra house key buried in the garden, extra stamps, etc.
14. K.M.S. (Keep Mouth Shut). This single piece of advice can prevent an enormous amount of trouble.
15. Do something for the Kid in You everyday.
16. Carry a spiritually enlightening book with you to read while waiting in line.
17. Get enough rest.
18. Eat right.
19. Get organized so everything has its place.
20. Listen to a CD while driving that can help improve your quality of life..
21. Write down thoughts and inspirations.
22. Every day, find time to be alone.
23. Having problems? Talk to God on the spot. Try to nip small problems in the bud. Don’t wait until it’s time to go to bed to try and pray.
24. Make friends with Godly people.
25. Keep a folder of favorite scriptures on hand.
26. Remember that the shortest bridge between despair and hope is often a good ‘Thank you Jesus .’
27. Laugh.
28. Laugh some more!
29. Take your work seriously, but not yourself at all.
30. Develop a forgiving attitude (most people are doing the best they can).
31. Be kind to unkind people (they probably need it the most).
32. Sit on your ego.
33. Talk less; listen more.
34. Slow down.
35. Remind yourself that you are not the general manager of the universe.
36. Every night before bed, think of one thing you’re grateful for that you’ve never been grateful for before. GOD HAS A WAY OF TURNING THINGS AROUND FOR YOU.

“If God is for us, who can be against us?”

(Romans  8:31)


This was in my Inbox this morning from my cousin Michelle. Simple advice for faithful living. Thanks ‘cuz!

Passing the days

Marble painting

Finished artwork

We got 3 new mice this weekend. The girls made this lame attempt to say it was my “mother’s day gift” but really they wanted the mice. They did allow me to pick one out for myself but I foot the bill! Mother’s Day…bah humbug! I hope you were one of the lucky mothers out there that had a special day. For me it was just an ordinary day.

The white mouse, “Snowflake”. There is also a tan mouse named “Coco” and a black/white mouse still unnamed.

Rocco is not liking these new additions to our family.

Oh, and I think we found a new church home (finally). Hubby gave his seal of approval this Sunday. You would be amazed at how hard it is to find a church that has the “right vibe” for you and your family.

A week in the life as a SAHM

And you thought I’d be sitting around watching home improvement shows all day. Not even close. (Okay, I watch a few.)

I am knee-deep in scrapping the peeling paint on the house trim. I have 2 sides scrapped and primed (except the very high part that I need someone to hold the ladder for). Estimated completion time: 3 weeks. You’re in luck little sis! I won’t put you to work while you are here on vacation.

And then it rained. This morning I had to sand the primed areas because I didn’t get it painted before the rain. The forecast is for 2-3 more days of rain, so today it was a race to beat the rain. There is a rotted board above the garage that needs to be replaced too. Why can’t home improvement projects ever be straight-forward and simple? {Ugh!}

Before and after house combo colors

By the way: Have you heard of MyLowes? Create an account online and you can store all your paint color numbers in your MyLowes account; so no more saving a gazillion empty paint cans. And, pick up the free MyLowes card at the store, register the card on your account, and every time you make a paint purchase (or any other purchase) it automatically logs in your account as long as you scan your MyLowes card at the register. Why didn’t they think of this sooner? I have logged all my old paint colors before the City comes by to pick up the massive pile of paint cans that was stored in my laundry room.

I cannot eat pancakes every morning! Even if they are mini pancakes and of the frozen variety. I did this for 3 days straight and then put the fork down. Mostly because we were out of pancakes…

Drinking coffee from a pretty cup tastes so much better! It’s a little treat everyday. This morning I made a pot of coffee but was in such a rush to get started on the painting that I completely forgot to have a cup!

The snowball bush is in full bloom. They look so spring-pretty on the kitchen table.

This is what happens to your stuff when you die.

We held an Estate Sale for our late friend this weekend. His house has sold, so we need to get the stuff out before the closing on the 14th. As the executor of his estate, Hubby and I cleaned and priced it all.

How do you put value on another person’s stuff? Was that his favorite mug to drink coffee in the morning that I just put 25¢ on? What is the China worth, really? Was it handed down from his Mother?

Puts a whole new meaning on the saying, “It’s only stuff“.

What do we do with the giant family portrait when there is no family left to take it? That is the hardest part for us. Here we have photo albums of family pictures but no family to pass it down to. I wouldn’t let hubby throw out the photos. I just can’t throw out photos.  It just feels like throwing away a part of him and I can’t do it.

I’ve read that 50-60 years after you die there will be nobody left that remembers you. How sad is that?

Photos are the last things we leave behind that reminds people “we were here”. Remember me. Remember how I loved you. Remember how much I lived, how much I enjoyed. And the thought of them in a landfill breaks my heart.

Who will remember him when we are gone?

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