Wednesday, December 30

almost new year's...

Do you get a nice break from the busy-ness of the Holidays after Christmas? I don't really lol.... I always like to get the house back in order right away, and then we have New Year's to get ready for, and Tomio's birthday is January 1st, so I make him a cake on the 31st. (We've been together for 15 years! now, and I've never missed being with him on his birthday, or him on mine...awww :)) Anyway, THEN Leah's birthday is on January 9th. Since she has a party with all the cousins too, there is alot more prep involved too. Leah has decided that she wants a golf themed party this year. I've been plainning some games and decorations for the past couple of weeks. It's all fun stuff :), but it keeps me busy nonetheless.

I made Tomio 2 birthday cards so far. I'm not really happy with either of them, but I don't think I'll get a chance to make another one. I'll try to post some pictures of them tomorrow. (Oh, I gave him the snowman Christmas card, btw, if you were wondering :))

Here is a layout I did of me and Miss Emma. (I'm pretty sure I haven't posted it here yet!) I don't get many pictures of the two pf us together, so I wanted to document this one:) All the pattern papers are Pink Paislee, and the cardstock is American Crafts. The letters are Quickutz. I used some doodlebug glitter on the heart for some bling :).

I really like how it turned out. Rhys just informed me that it looks empty lol. I still like it though :)
Thanks for stopping by! I hope you have a great New Year's day :) We will be ringing it in at home with some of Tomio's favorite cheesecake!

Monday, December 28

I took my Christmas decorations down yesterday. The past few years I've been taking them down around the 28th or so. Usually Tomio has a couple of days of work after Christmas and I like to take them down while he is at work so he won't have to deal with it during the break. The kids (epsecially Levi) were sad though. This was the first year that Levi really got into and understood everything going on at Christmas so he had SO much fun. I've always loved Christmas ever since I was little. Our family always made a big deal out of it and I'm so glad that my kids are so into it too.

These are  few of the photos from Christmas day. Most of these are from Nana and Papa's house.
Thanks for stopping by! I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas! I will be spending most of the rest of the break at home :) Hopefully doing something scrappy:)

Wednesday, December 23

Christmas cards

Every year I make Tomio a Christmas card to put in his stocking. Well, actually I usually end up making him 3 or more trynig to make it just I think I worry about his more than any others, even those I submit to magazines...And yes, this year was no exception. I made 3 cards, and in the end I chose the last one I made. But I thought I would go ahead and share all 3 :) (and no worries, he doesn't check my blog :))

Here is the first one I made:

Light blue and brown :) I LOVE light bue and brown. I embossed the trees from Paperrey's Merry & Bright set with some sparkly white embossing powder. All the cardstock and ribbon are from Papertrey too.
Here is the second one I made:

I had this image in my head of silver snowflakes on a red background.... and this came out pretty close to what  I was thinking of. The snowflakes are from Impression Obsession. I use them ALL the time. The sentiment is from my current favorite Christmas set, Holiday Tree from Papertrey.
And this is the last card I made:

I used Holiday Tree for this one too. I LOVE this snowman! He's actually the reason I wanted this set :).And I used rustic cream cardstock for the base. Wow. I {heart} rustic cream!!! It has just the right touch of "rusticness" lol. I *might* like it even better than kraft-gasp! I said might lol.

Now, I think this is my favorite. So I will probably give him this one. But, I am pretty sure that he will like the second one best, so there is a chance I will give him that one instead lol. What do you think? Which one is your favorite? And which one would you give?
Thanks for stopping by! We made gingerbread men today. The kids had so much fun :) Now the are getting ready to have a cookie-Christmas movie -party :) Emma's asleep, so now I am off to make dinner :)

Monday, December 21

apple butter

Our church has a Christmas party each year, usually a few days before Christmas. This was actually the first year Tomio got to make it because the last couple of years they had it on a day when he had work. Anyway, the last couple of years I had been wanting to make something nice to give out to everyone, but never actually got to do it. So this year, I was determined to actually DO something. I decided to make homemade apple butter foreveryone. Here in Japan you can't get apple butter, and most people hadn't even heard of it. After a few bumps in the road finding the jars and supplies, I was actually happy with how they turned out :) Leah was so excited about them and SO wanted to help. She put all the labels on the jars for me and was so proud of herself :) I was glad that she liked helping out.

I had alot of fun making these tags. Well, not at first. Knowing that I needed to make at least 20 of these, I thought it would easiest just to mass produce them.(Yes, I KNOW I hate mass producing...) So foolishly, I started cutting out 20 tags the same color and stamped them with the same design...only to hate the results. Then I realized I had alot more fun just doing a few at a time, kind of similar, but no 2 really alike. THEN I had fun and liked the results. I used a few different Papertrey ink sets to make these. Oh, and I used some snowflake images from My Sentiments Exactly and Hero Arts. The lables I printed out on my computer and then stamped the frame with a Hero Arts stamp.I'm SO glad I actually did something this year instead of just thinking about it lol.
Thanks for stopping by! Be sure to do at least one thing you think about doing each Christmas but don't, for whatever reason :) You will be so glad you did!

Friday, December 18


I don't know what it was, but for some reason my computer and blogger were NOT getting along for the past few days. I have been trying to post, but it wasn't really working--aargh! But, at least they seem to be getting along fine now :) I was supposed to take Miss Emma in for her second vaccine in a series of three today. It seems though, that it was too soon after she had the mumps, so it was moved to next week. Not really a big deal, but frustrating nonetheless. I've been trying to take her in for this vaccine for the past 3 weeks...anyway I was so happy to make a card for this week's Mojo Monday sketch. I haven't really made much just for fun lately, so I was glad to have this chance :) I used some of my newest goodies too. I just love the Turning a New Leaf set from Papertrey! So many uses. I don't know how well you can tell in the photo, but I stamped the largest leaf image from the set in light yellow before I stamped the sentiment. I'm not usually one for fussy-cutting, but I really like how these images look when they are cut out. Christmas cards are really my absolute favorite kind to make, but I have been making so many Christmas cards and tags lately that it was fun to make something different too.

Thanks for stopping by! Hope you are enjoying this last week of fun anticipation before Christmas :)

supplies: cardstock: bazzil, pattern paper: basic grey, stamps: papertrey ink and verve, scallop punch: fiskars, ribbon: paperrtey ink, ink: tsukineko

Sunday, December 13

more of Miss Emma

I cannot believe that there are less than 2 weeks till Christmas!! wow. It seems extra fast to me since we usually put up our tree near the beginning of November and have it up for about 2 months :) But since Tomio was swamped and then everyone got the mumps etc, we didn't actually get it up until December. It's fun though, Levi keeps asking when we get to open the presents under the tree. He seemed to think that tree=Christmas TIME=Christmas=open presents :) I explained that once the advent calendar-tree was full of decorations, THEN he got to open them. It took a couple days, but I think he got it now :)
Miss Emma turns 7 months today :) I made sure to get her monthly pictures taken. And in honor of her 7-month milestone,

I thought I would share another Miss Emma layout I did, with some more hand stitching :)

I drew the line of where I wanted to stitch first, then I pierced holes all along the line. I find it's alot easier to stitch if the holes are alreay there. I usually will just cross stitching thread since I have just about any color I could possibly need :) When  I adhere my butterflies, I usually will just cut a thin strip of foam tape and attach it to the middle so the wings can "pop up".
Thanks for stopping by! Be sure to stop and enjoy the holiday season instead of just letting it fly by "while you were busy" :) I am trying to!

supplies: cardstock: paper reflections, pattern paper: fancy pants, butterflies: papertreyink stamps, letters: quickutz, label: spellbinders, buttons: basic grey, doodlebug

Saturday, December 12

Raspberry Suite #20

 I didn't really think I'd get to participate in Dawn's Raspberry Suite Challenge this time since I haevn't had much stamping time this seek. But I really liked the colors and thought it would be fun to try. So I made time :) And, I am pretty happy with how it turned out. I always have fun doing Dawn's challenges :)

At first I wasn't sure what I would use for the rust color, but I remembered I had this really gorgeous pink paislee paper. It worked perfectly! Almost everything else it from Papertrey. I thought I might have a hard time cutting out the leaves, but I wanted t anyway lol. I was surprised that it wasn't too hard afterall and I like the look alot. For the double scallop, I used a Quickutz border die for the big one and the Fiskars scallop sentiment for the smaller one.
Thanks for stopping by!

Supplies: cardstock: papertrey ink, pattern paper: pink paislee, stamps-text, leaf & sentiment-papertrey ink, dots-fontwerks, scallop borders: quickutz, fiskars

Thursday, December 10

it had been awhile...

Ever since my decision to bake something each week when Emma was just born, I have actually made something each week. Sometimes something new, sometimes just chocolate chip cookies, but SOMETHING. Except last week. Too many people with mumps not wanting to chew, and me a little too tired to think about it. So this week it seemed like it had been a long time since we baked something. I decided to make ginger cookies since that seemed Christmas-y :) They were quite yummy, and yes very Christmas-y:) They didn't even last 2 days though, so I'm thinking we need to bake something else. You know, to make up for last week :)

Now don't you want to make some? :) Or at least eat some?

Here is a layout I made of Miss Emma recently. I had some fun doing some hand stitching on this:

All the hearts sre hand stitched. The cute paper is K& Co. Valentine's paper.

Thanks  for stopping by! I haven't had nearly the scrapping time I would like lately, so I am hoping to get some time the next few days. I hope you are having a crafty week :)

supplies: cardstock: core'denations, pattern paper: k&co, diecuts: quickutz other: gems, floss

Sunday, December 6


Goodness! I've been busier than I expected! It turns out taking care of 3 sick kids and trying to keep house and feed a family of 6 actually DOES take alot out of you. Who'd have thought? :) But I have to say that Tomio has been very helpful :) And I could tell that he DID realize how tough it was for me. Fortunately,everyone's fevers have gone down and they've gotten so that they can eat most things without it hurting too much. I must say, I'm glad that you can't get the mumps more than once :)

Whenever I had the chance, I have been working on Christmas tags all week. This is actually the first year for me to really make tags for all the gifts I am giving, and I have been having alot of fun :) BUT, I can't believe I that I was so excited to get some done, that I addressed them and put them on the presents before I got pictures of them!!!! I did try to get a couple pictures of some I hadn't put on when I realized I hadn't taken any pictures yet.

These are just a few of the ones I made. When I showed them to the kids, they all immdediately chose their favorites and said they wanted those on their presents :) I tried to oblige as much as possible :) I don't know about most people, but I REALLY don't like mass producing anything. I hate making 2 of anything. So I made a whole bunch of differnet tags. It would probably be alot faster to make the same ones again, but I figured there was no point if I didn't have fun, right? How about you? Do you loathe mass producing like I do or find it more fun to already have the layout decided and make lots of a design that you know you like?( Btw, I used my new Papertrey's Holiday Tree set for alot of my tags, and I LOVE it!!! It's so fun and easy to use :))

Thanks for stopping by! I hope you are having a healthy holiday season!

Wednesday, December 2

Just a quick share....

I DID get to make a card for this week's Mojo Monday sketch. I actually finished it earlier, but I didn't get a chance to post it yet. (See, I told you for some reason I never get them posted before

I used one of the first Papertrey sets I ever got--Take a Bough. I love all the little ornaments in this set And its so fun to stamp the little design on them in a different color lol. Instead of using the stamp for the string, I paper pierced one. I also stamped snowflakes all over the white background in sandbeige. You can't see it very well in the photo. But you can see it a little better in the photo of the inside where I did the same thing:

Thanks for stopping by! Hope you are having a great December so far! The kids all love doing the advent calendar :) Unfotunately, after Rhys' bout with mumps last week, it looks like all 3 of the others got it....At least we all got to go to Thanksgiving and get the tree up before they all got it, right?!

supplies: cardstock: diecuts with a view, stamps: papertrey ink, Ink: tsukineko, circle dies: quickutz

Tuesday, December 1

seasonal fun :)

well I had a great weekend :) Thanksgiving was fun and yummy :) Levi didn't really remember any about Thanksgiving from last year, so he was extra excited about all the fun. And I am pretty sure his favorite thing of all was the pumpkin cheesecake lol. (But who could blame him? hehe!) Miss Emma even got to have some the mashed potatoes and sweet potato casserole. And I am pretty sure she thought they were completely awesome :)
AND........ we finally got our tree up!!!! yay!! It took extra long since this was the first time to put our decorations in the new house and we had to decide everything. But it was so worth it. I LOVE Christmas time! Nothing more fun than sitting on the couch snuggled up with a blanket, looking at the tree all lit up :)

Then on Monday (so I guess technically that's not the weekend anymore, but anyway...) we had our much-looked-forward-to-yearly shopping trip. Everyone year my mom and 2 sisters all go out for our Christmas shopping--sans little ones :) ( well as much as possilble, this year Miss Emma and her 2 month old cousin Olivia decided to join in on the shopping). The older 3 all got to spend the day with Papa, which was of course super exciting. Leah even made lunch for Papa and all the kids. She was SO proud of herself. Anyway, with so much of our shopping being done online now, we don't always end up buying all that much except for stocking stuffers. But we still go every year :) And we always have a coffee break at Starbucks. It's a day full of shopping and talking and laughing and eating. Tomio always sends me off with plenty of money and asks no questions about what I spent it on :) In a way, its not a big deal, but I look forward to it every year. I adore my cuties:) and I LOVE that I get to spend 24/7 with them. But for one day a year, I really enjoy my girls' day out. And I so appreciate that Tomio gets that :) 

All this seasonal fun left me pretty much no time for crafting though. I did make some Christmas tags, but none of them are on the computer yet, so maybe I'll share them tomorrow. I don't think I shared this card yet though:

It's a really simple card, but I love how it turned out. This is actually the card I made for Tomio for our anniversary this year :)
Thanks for stopping by!! Hope you're enjoying getting into the holiday spirit as much as I am!

Oh, and I was wondering, has everyone but me gotten the Creating Keepsakes December issue?! I subscribed this summer and was told I would start receiving them from the December issue. That's supposed to come in November, right? Is this typical? (just wondering :) )

Thursday, November 26


 A normal conversation at our house....

Levi-"Mama, what does fu-e-la mean?"

me: "ummm...what?"

Levi: "fu e la--like in the song!"

me: "I'm not sure...what song are you talking about?"

Levi: "You know, the one you sing...won't let satan fu-e-la, I'm gonna let it shiiiiine!"

The light bulb goes on in my head.

"oh, you mean won't let satan fuuuuu(I make a blowing sound) it out! You're not going to let satan blow out your light shining for God."

Levi: "Oh. Ok.~this little light of mine...." :)

I'm so thankful for little joys each day. I can honestly say it is never dull~ he he :) Hope you had a great Thanksgiving! We'll be celebrating on Saturday here.

Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, November 24

raspberry suite challenge

Another challenge-yay! Alot of colors to incorporate in this week's challenge. But I really like all of them. And, after working on the card for this challenge, I found it much easier for me to use green on a card, where ususally, for some reason, I seem to struggle with green.

There is almost not stamping on this card. But there is some :) I used Damask Designs to stamp a subtle pattern on the butterfly. It's not really obvious, but it looks so much cuter than just plain. I also made little antenna for the butterfly with wire and popped him up with pop dots. I really like how the purple and the light green go together-so yummy:)

I thought I would go ahead and post this card too. This was going to be my entry for the challenge, but I liked it better with just the white embossed butterfly instead of the aqua. And since it didn't have all the colors
I made the other butterfly one. I had so much fun with these colors and the butterflies, I think I will make a few more as a set :) But I think I'm going to need some more butterfly stamps-he he :)
Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, November 23

Lucy's Color Challenge

I love all of Lucy's cards :) They are always so PRETTY. And since I'm always checking out her lovely creations, I knew I wanted to participate in her color challenge. I LOVE the colors she chose. love. So I was really excited to get started on the challenge. That's when I discovered that while I make cards with these colors all the time, I pretty much always use either white or cream too...It took me a little bit to get out of that way of thinking lol, but once I did, I had fun :) Here is what I made:

I used 3 different stamp sets for this card- Papertrey's Damask Designs and Butterfly Kisses (not for the butterfly, lol) and Verve's Thankful Blossoms. I paper pieced the butterfly after stamping it on the pink so the antenna already be there. And once again, I wished I had Polka dot basics from Papertrey...I always end up choosing something else instead lol. ( I think in a way I wonder if it would be easier to have one big polkadot background stamp, so that I wouldn't have to try to line them up to stamp the full background. What do you think? Do you prefer the strips like Papertrey has or a full background? Which would you recommend?!)
Anyway, thanks for stopping by! I hope your week is starting out well :)

supplies: cardstock: papertrey ink, stamps: papertrey ink and verve ribbon: papertrey ink, label die: spellbinders

Saturday, November 21

just a quick share....

well....a case of the mumps= no Christmas tree yet and a quick post. Rhys came down with the mumps on Tuesday. We thought it mght be the awful flu since it started out as a high fever, but much to our surprise it was the mumps...(here in Japan mumps vaccinations aren't standard...). He is doing much better now, but it has made for a busy, mixed up week. And no Christmas decorations yet. Leah is pretty sad about it, but she hasn't complained. She did make some of her decrations and a paper tree out of scrapbook paper to decorate her own room though :) Now that's my girl :)

I do have one card to share. It's got lots of my faves on it--butterflies, text stamps, scallops and brown :)

I don't know how well you can tell in the photo, but I stamped Papertrey Ink's text background stamp on the pink base. (sorry about the lighting in the photo!) I also stamped on of the other text backgrounds on the butterfly's wings. Then I chalked the edges of it's wings with some light pink for extra definition. The butterfly is from Quickutz. I think I have 3 or 4 different Quickutz butterflies, but I don't think it is quite enough :) Besides, you can never have too many different butterflies, right?!

Anyway, thanks for stopping by! I hope you are having an illness-free week :) (do you even know of anyone who has actually had the mumps?! lol)

supplies: cardstock, stamps:papertrey ink, diecuts: Quickutz, pattern paper: diecuts with a vie, other: gems from stash

Wednesday, November 18

Why is it...

that I always seem to post my Mojo Monday cards on Thursday? lol It doesn't matter when I actually create it, I will never get it posted before Thursday...:) So here is what I made:

I love these colors :) Something about dark brown with burgundies and pinks--it makes me think of delicious, rich chocolate :) So as soon as I started putting the base of this card together, I knew what iamge I was going to use. I used white embossing powder to make frosting pop. I the subtle but rich touch the damask stamp has on the burgundy when stamped in Versamark.

Thanks for stopping! So glad I got a chance to play along this week :)

supplies:cardstock: bazzill basics, paper reflections, worldwin stamps: papertreyink, "happy birthday" stamp-pink cat studio, ribbon: papertrey ink