Thursday, November 26, 2015

Day 278: Joyous Holiday Santa Card

Today was a fun day! We rook the boys out to our neighborhood Turkey Trot. Nothing like a brisk 3 mile walk in the freezing cold to remind you how very, very grateful you are for the restored electricity and heat in your home. The boys alternated whining about being tired with requests to climb the rock wall at the end of our route. We finished dead last, but this year we did finish, with no boys peeling off to head home halfway through the trot, so I'm calling it a success! 
After the Trot, the boys helped decorate our living room with the snowflakes we cut last week - literally every wall is covered with them. Then after preparing (and eating) a lovely gluten free Thanksgiving meal (roasted turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, roasted brussel sprouts, homemade cranberry sauce, and onion gravy) I found a few minutes to play with this week's Freshly Made sketches challenge.
You're going to see more from me with this adorable Reindeer Bells stamp set. That Santa was so fun and quick to color!I added a few snowflakes around him, and some clear Wink of Stella to his coat fur trim. I couldn't resist fussy cutting him out and popping him up with a bit of thin foam tape.
This is my sweet family at our morning Turkey Trot. So much to be thankful for today...hope you had a great day too, Stampin' Friends!

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Day 277: Snowman Candle Snowflake Ornament Craft

Today was a busy Thanksgiving prep day. I made a dozen each of tiny pumpkin cheese cakes and pumpkin pies, plus a couple dozen banana pumpkin grain free muffins. We finished the ridiculously messy tissue paper snowflake cutting activity, bought new sleds, and froze our toes off in the ice/snow. Stamping wasn't on the agenda, but the boys and I did make these adorable snowflake ornaments for our tree, using some of the battery operated tea lights from our Spokane windstorm power outage experience.  
The boys added googly eyes and sharpie mouths to the tea lights. We cut some hat shapes from an old shipping box and they colored them black. Then Mom (that's me) used E6000 to glue the lights onto some inexpensive glitter stars we scored at Target. so no one would be burned by the hot glue gun, with lots of advice from the peanut gallery. We added some resin glitter holly bits from my stash - I think I got them at Michaels.  Every boy was pleased as punch.
I know they won't glow forever, but I did use some scissors to trim out a segment of the snowflake so we can turn them on and off until the batteries die. I think these will be a good conversation starter when we trim the tree each year, reminding us how lucky we are, and how we sometimes take things for granted. Like power, or heat.  Sometimes the bad things can open your eyes to the good things you weren't really paying attention to before...

So tomorrow as I roast that turkey I've got dry-brining in the fridge that actually keeps things cold, I'll be grateful for my safe and healthy family gathered around me, for having enough food to feed us all, and for every little thing that I'm lucky enough to experience. 

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Day 276: 3-D Snowflake Kid Craft

So yesterday I was telling y'all how I was so happy to have our power back. I went out and re-grocery shopped and bought a turkey for Thanksgiving...and this morning, good bye power. It had snowed last night, and someone slid off the road and took out the power for our neighborhood. Luckily everyone was ok, but I was positive that we were once again powerless along with 18,000 other households. I spent the morning stocking up on easy to cook gluten free foods and googling how to cook a turkey on the stove top instead of in the oven. 
I also grabbed this Snowflake kit (and some other craft items) to help with another round of no power with three energetic boys. It looked a bit complicated, but I figured that might help keep Gabe's interest while I helped Ben and Max.  
The boys didn't need my help at all. It was such a fun little craft kit, and everyone easily and happily completed a snowflake while singing a few holiday songs plus their current favorite Snape, Snape, Severus Snape. Max kept adding more and more of the pretty "Sequence" to his snowflake (we've been playing a LOT of board games). Once we had completed the crafting kit, we cut out a few more tissue paper snowflakes. My dining room floor is covered with bits of tissue paper, but it was the calmest evening we've had since last Tuesday.
Thankfully, the power came back on about five hours after it went out this time. I'm not sure why, since there are still so many without, but I'm very grateful that we aren't camping in the living room again. I'm also glad that instead of working on a new stamping project today that we did these snowflakes. Ben usually hates crafting, but he is digging our snowflake project. He told me he loves crafting with me, which I never thought he'd ever say, since he basically does anything to get out of drawing, coloring, and painting. Then he asked if I wanted him to scrapbook with me, so I see an Instalife book coming soon in his future! 

Monday, November 23, 2015

Day 275: Happy Holidays Card

   Tonight I'm sharing this quick holiday card, which is the first project I've crafted in over a week. I've missed my inky paws!
I decided to try out the new sketch from Retrosketches. I painted a swatch of blue watercolor onto a Colonial White cardstock panel, then splattered it with a darker blue and some grey watercolor paint. 
Then I layered on some images from the Base and Bling Jolly Holiday Style sheet. They are meant to be for the make your own jewelry stuff, but I thought the stickers were just so cute for a card too. I added some White Pines snowflake stickers and a sentiment stamped from one of the Artfully Set stamp sets.

This last week has been an interesting one for my little family here in Spokane. Last Tuesday we lost power in a huge windstorm. I had meant to spread out sharing my Album Retreat pages a bit more with other projects, but each night that we had no power and no Internet meant no crafting for me. We were camping in our living room to stay close to the gas fireplace with three little LED lanterns. We were lucky enough to get power back after 39 hours, but it took an extra day for the Internet to come back. There are still 23,000 homes in my town with no power, limited or no heat, and it's supposed to snow tonight. Also, my kiddos, my sweet, adorable boys...they really needed my full attention these last few days. Even with the power back, we will now have no school again until next Monday so at my house we are making a ton of paper snowflakes, playing lots of Tenzi, and trying to get these boys back to some semblance of normal routine. Short story long, there hasn't been a lot of time for crafting this week, so getting back to my craft table tonight was a real treat, and I'm feeling really blessed to have our modern conveniences back. It's been amazing to watch how the community has been working together to help those still struggling with no power or heat in this city wide crisis. I hope all of you are safe and warm, too, Stampin' Friends! 

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Day 274: Life is a Journey Album Retreat Layout

This layout is also one of my favorites from the Album Retreat. I love the bold Lagoon against the soft Canary with the strong black accents.
This was my favorite watercolor splatter too. I used the blue at first, then added a bit of black. I also added actual black hand stitching around the background.
This is my last layout to share from the CTMH Album Retreat. I had such a good time, not just making these lovely projects, but hanging out with my CTMH peeps and enjoying some much needed girl time. I give this Album Retreat a five (right, Amanda?) and I can't wait until I can be lucky enough to attend another!  


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