Friday, December 25, 2009

25 Days of Sketches - Day 25

Last day -- whew. To qualify for this week's - this week is abbreviated -- or the entire 25 days, you have until the 28th to get your items linked in the associated posts. Today's sketch is from Triple the Sketch.

Short and sweet today -- we'll chat tomorrow. May your Christmas be the Merriest yet. Enjoy your day with family, friends, food and fun. Photobucket

Thursday, December 24, 2009

25 Days of Sketches - Day 24

I got all my cooking prep done! WooHoo. Thanks to my little elves, I have a pretty good dent in my wrapping -- or at least I think I do. I should see what's left to wrap instead of looking at what's been wrapped. My laundry is half done. My house has been dusted, I'll need to vacuum and clean the wood floors and give the bathroom a quick wipe down. And then general shuffling of things to appropriate places in the house. But otherwise, feelin' good. Feelin' peaceful. The snow that started yesterday continued through the night and we have a good five or so inches, and thanks to the arctic blast, we'll keep it around well through Christmas Day; possibly New Year's before we see anything above freezing. It'll be a lovely Christmas. When you've got the time, here's today's sketch from 52 Sketches 52 Weeks. The perfect thing for getting several photos from the events during this time of year. Or maybe the events during this time of year last year. ;)

I've got to get my dinner things lined up, prep the ham and whatnot. Whatever festivities you have on your plate today may they be beautiful reminders of what this season is truly about. Take joy in family and friends and I hope you find (and enjoy) a child-like gift of anticipation.


Wednesday, December 23, 2009

25 Days of Sketches - Day 23

Holy cow, only two more days left. Of sketches that is. I'm in denial about Christmas being just two days away. As predicted, panic and mind-spinning has set in that I don't have everything, that I need to do some pre-cooking for tomorrow night, that I've forgotten something, that I have piles of gifts to wrap, that I have a ton of cleaning to do -- ahhhhh. Add to that I have dentist appointments for four of us later this morning that will take a good three hours out of my day. On the plus side -- it's snowing! Soft, powdery snow. Tiny flakes just sliding down from the sky. It won't continue through Christmas, but it'll be white and who can complain about that. So, I'll do my prep when I get home, set the a couple of the kids to do some wrapping for me, clean only the areas people will see and close the doors on the rest and find peace with the fact that I have plenty and if I didn't get everything, nobody's going to know but me. For those with time to spare, here's today's sketch by our very own Bessie Villegas. Another great sketch, Thanks Bessie!
As we continue to rush towards "the day" be sure you take some time to see the tiny magical moments around you; the sparkle of a tree light, the tiny snowflake perched on your windshield, the smell of goodies in the oven, the anticipation in a child as they pass the tree and try very hard not to look at or shake the presents underneath.
Enjoy your day.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

25 Days of Sketches - Day 22

A new day. A day closer to Christmas Eve. A day closer to the Christmas Eve dinner I'm hosting and no menu set. Other than we'll be eating, I've got nothing. I think the fact that it's low key has me really dragging my heels. I mean I had 22 here for Thanksgiving and I'll have only 10 for Christmas Eve. That's like cooking dinner for my own little family -- and I plan that 30 minutes before I plop it on the table. See, no need for big plans. Managed to make it out yesterday with son #1 (aka child #2) to get his shopping done and that was about it. The 1 y.o. didn't sleep until 3:00, laundry remains unsorted and undone. And I need to start wrapping. Some serious wrapping. I fear my kids' Christmas-Break-slug-like behavior is rubbing off on me. Unfortunately, wrapping is as close to paper crafting as I'm going to get right now. But you, you get to play with today's sketch from PageMaps by Becky Fleck.

Officially, we have less than 72 hours left until the end of 25 Days of Sketches. Oh, and Christmas will be here too. :D


Monday, December 21, 2009

25 Days of Sketches - Day 21

I hope your first day of winter is shaping up nicely; bright and sunny here, hardly winter-like. If you're up in the northeast, well you certainly have your fair share of winter, and hope that you are carefully digging yourselves out. My kids would be in hog-heaven if we had that kind of snow. I told them, wait, our winter is just getting started. They were excited that we may have a white Christmas -- snow on the ground, not snow falling. Plans for the week ahead? Shopping, wrapping, baking? Or are you lucky enough to be done with it all and get to enjoy the week? If you're one of the nothing-left-to-do-bunch, you'll have more than enough free time to do a little scrapbooking. If you're one of the running-around-hair-on-fire-bunch, well, then you'll need some down time and scrapbooking is the ticket. This week's sketch comes from Nuts About Sketches and I love this sketch. I've already printed off a copy for myself and stuck it with my kits. Some of the examples done with this sketch are Christmas themed, which seems to suit the sketch well. Lots of photos, lots of movement, just like Christmas morning.
I'm halfway through my coffee, the laundry is beckoning, my 1 y.o. is still awake in his crib apparently not feeling the need to nap and I have other children in need of some direction. Hope your Monday is productive, yet relaxing.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

25 Days of Sketches - Day 20

My apologies for the lateness of getting today's sketch up -- I tried several times this morning to get to my computer, but something, or rather someone, got in my way. I tried to distract said someones with helping me get the house in order for the Cookie Exchange, but these little people could not be left unattended. The "Distraction Bug" was alive and well and working hard in my home this morning. The next thing I knew the Cookie Exchange was upon me and folks were arriving with plate-fuls of goodies. So here I am -- a quiet house once again, another holiday activity behind me and a kitchen counter filled with enough cookies to feed all Santa's elves. But here's your part -- this sketch comes from Triple the Sketch, which has stopped posting new sketches, but still has an archive filled with wonderful sketches and great examples from the design team.

I'm hoping you had a peaceful weekend and are looking at Christmas-week with a lighter list of things to do and a touch of magical anticipation.


Saturday, December 19, 2009

25 Days of Sketches - Day 19

Well, yesterday turned out pretty good, better than I expected. I managed to pick up a couple gifts. I finished ordering for February kits -- ooooo! ;D Got the kids to clean up their rooms and they did an awesome job! My daughter decorated her room (and door) for Christmas. The boys even went through their clothes and pulled out a bunch for the give-away box. As reward, we ordered in pizza.
Today we have soccer in the morning, basketball in the afternoon and Mass in the evening. Somewhere in between I need to bake cookies for the annual Cookie Bake I'll host on Sunday. We need to finish up the tree - though at this point, I'm good with the way it looks now. As part of our advent calendar, we have "wrap presents as a family" and I actually have some the kids can see so they can help with the wrapping. I need to get out and get a few more things, but need DH to go along, or at least give the "okay."
What will you do today? Your 19th sketch? Nineteen! Nineteen -- if you've been cropping everyday, you've completed 19 layouts! Amazing! Even if you haven't been able to do all of them to date, but you've been doing some, pat yourself on the back too! Making the time to do something for yourself this time of year can take some doing - so good for you.
Here is today's sketch, by Bessie Villegas, as well as an example based on the sketch. Thank you Bessie! :) This is the last sketch for the current week.
Enjoy your Saturday and whatever festivities you may have going on today.

Friday, December 18, 2009

25 Days of Sketches - Day 18

A semi-productive day yesterday, combined with a half-day of school today, means I might make an in-road on the Christmas shopping I have left. As long as the 1 y.o. holds up (close to nap time and shots on Wednesday.) At the end of another week -- only a few days left of the 25 Days of Sketches, which means Christmas is just around the corner. I can't help with the shopping, wrapping or baking that may still be on your list, but I have today's sketch, which can help you move towards completing all 25 sketches this month. This sketch comes from 52 Sketches 52 Weeks. If you've never checked out the Design Team's work over there, you should. They have wonderful inspiration.

Plans for the weekend? Hopefully, what ever they are, they're fun!


Thursday, December 17, 2009

25 Days of Sketches - Day 17

SIGH! I think I'm loosing ground -- and quickly. I've decided to give in to the slide and see where I land. Should be interesting at least. Today is quick and easy - things to do and my mind is all a-whirl, so I can't seem to focus enough to make a coherent list of what to do or where to start. So, I'll start here with today's sketch from Becky Fleck at Page Maps from her December '08 sketches.

I know I've got last week's winner to select (I remember :)) and I'm hoping after serving lunch at the kids' school today, I'll have some time (and a child who would like to nap) to sort through them. See quick and easy -- now onward to the rest of my day! See, I go with gusto (if I had a sword to swing around in front of me, it'd be swinging!), we'll see how long that lasts :D Photobucket

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

25 Days of Sketches - Day 16

Okay, panic mode is beginning to set in. Last month I started out great with the whole shopping early thing and here I am, less than 10 days and partially finished. So, I'm either gonna have to pay "out the wazoo" for shipping or I'm gonna have to bite the bullet and start hitting the stores. I detest both, equally. My 9 y.o. son's Christmas concert last night and it was very cute. He was a traveler in it, sang all the songs and did his part. Matthew (the 1 y.o.) even liked it and watched quite a bit. I was surprised since he's all about moving around. Found his big brother a couple of times and tried to have a conversation with him while big brother was on stage and little brother was in the bleachers. Hope the people recording it behind us don't mind the added commentary on their video. Today, besides the usual chores; laundry, making beds, dishes and whatnot, the 1 y.o. has a 15 month check up, with shots (always a fun time), I've got to find shoes for my daughter's dance on Thursday (yes, that would be tomorrow), do something about dinner - we have a 7:00 pm basketball game on the other side of town (which we need to be leaving the house by 6:00 pm for), and I need to try and order some gifts. Maybe I'll just hit Amazon and see what I can grab up from there. Plus, I need to get February kits ordered. Yikes. Okay, so I have enough to keep me busy today -- do you? Or do you need today's sketch? Today's sketch comes from Nuts About Sketches. It's Shawn's most recent sketch and it's totally cute. If you need inspiration, she has a great design team and they did some really cute examples with this one.

I'm off to clean the kitchen, change the standing milk order, rotate the laundry and see what I can find on Amazon while the baby is sleeping. Maybe even have time to suck down some coffee.

Hopefully, you'll enjoy a stress-free day with a little cropping thrown in.


Tuesday, December 15, 2009

25 Days of Sketches - Day 15

Only 10 days and 10 sketches left. How are you doing? I can tell from the number of layouts I'm seeing so far, you are busy and, from my side, the creativity is popping! Keep it up. I think I'm brain dead because I can't think of a thing to write about today, that or it's simply clogged with the long list of things that need to get done. Maybe I'll take a few minutes over coffee this morning to make a to-do list and see if that helps. Or maybe it'll just freak me out all together and I'll shut down completely. Today's sketch comes from Amy Crockett -- you can check out her cute blog here. Yes, it's a 2-pager, but it's only five photos and the layout of it is nice and clean. If you're 2-page-challenged this is a good one for you!

Hope your Tuesday is crisp and clear in mind and spirit!


Monday, December 14, 2009

25 Days of Sketches - Day 14

A rather unproductive Sunday leaves me with way too many things to do today. Cooked and eventually cleaned up from a big breakfast, went to the grocery store and spent too much, took a nap for too long and pulled some rather large orders - can you say early Christmas presents for some of you. That's about it. There were so many other things that needed doing and I can't tell you what happened to the day, other than it got away from me! Here's to helping you be more productive in your 25 Days of Sketches, with today's sketch from Bessie, and an accompanying example - always a good way to get the creativity going on a Monday!

Happy, productive Monday!


Sunday, December 13, 2009

25 Days of Sketches - Day 13

Okay, it's go time. I gotta get some of my online shopping finished . . . today! There's just no time left to get them here before Christmas if I don't. Keep your fingers crossed I can find a moment here and there do it. Last night I attended my sister's "White Trash" Christmas party. It was a great time; the hardest I laughed in a long time. I didn't take my own camera - another reason I need a point-and-shoot, but two of my sisters did, so hopefully they'll share a few with me. I can't tell you the last time I wore blue eyeshadow. I've never had that much cleavage. And never, ever was underwear shown as much as it was last night . . . on purpose! Oh, my it was really good fun. Anyway, got things to do today. This is also the beginning of the next week's worth of sketches. Below you'll find a fun "off the page," square page that is, sketch from Becky Fleck's Page Maps.

Here's to hoping you have a wonderful Sunday to recoup before the work/school-week cranks up. Photobucket

Saturday, December 12, 2009

25 Days of Sketches - Day 12

Still mired in work and a busy day ahead, it's super short and sweet. Today's sketch and example are provided by Bessie Villegas -- our very own :D Thanks Bessie!

Remember this week's layouts are due to be linked in each of the sketches you used by tonight to be eligible for the Cookie Jar Treat drawing.



Friday, December 11, 2009

25 Days of Sketches - Day 11

Holy, cow. I can't believe it! I had to get a cup of coffee, rub my eyes, put in my contacts and look again. But it's true. The temperature here is at the freezing mark - 32 degrees! After almost a week of sub-freezing temps, like in the teens if we were lucky - it will actually be above freezing! And it's Friday! WooHoo. Well, sort of woohoo. I feel like I've been running all week and nothing has gotten done. It feels that way, but when I look around, the house is in pretty good condition, and laundry got done, so someone's done something. Maybe Abbot the Elf has been doing more than making mischief overnight. Nah. This weekend is a lot more calm than last's. A soccer game tonight - I think one of the last couple for my 9 y.o. My 11 y.o.'s soccer game is tomorrow and they're in the playoffs and then the same son has a basketball game. My daughter is walking to see a movie after school today with some classmates. My youngest sister has her Christmas party tomorrow and I need to go get a costume -- interesting theme -- which I'll talk about afterwards. Wow, two costume parties in one year and neither one was for Halloween! Should be a totally fun and hysterical party though. So, I can't believe the number of layouts you all are cranking out -- keep it up! They're beautiful too. Remember at least three sketches worth of layouts are due by Saturday night to be eligible for this week's Treat. Do all 25 and be eligible for the Christmas Treat. I'm usually not a big 1-photo-layout kinda gal, but when I saw this one, I really liked it. I think because it has the ability to be altered, LOL; I could sub out the one big photo with two ( or more) smaller photos or move the journaling and put another photo there. This cute little sketch comes from 52 Sketches 52 Weeks. I've got an extra entry in the drawing for anyone who hasn't yet posted a layout during the 25 Days of Sketches. We want to see your work!

Hopefully your weekend plans have some downtime so you can enjoy a peaceful look at the tree, actually enjoy the task of wrapping a gift or two or simply sitting and listening to the sounds of the season. Have a great weekend! Photobucket

Thursday, December 10, 2009

25 Days of Sketches - Day 10

Wow - 10 days into December already! Really? I better hurry up with some of the rest of my Christmas shopping online, or I'll be forced to go out and shop with the rest of the herds. Another busy day ahead. Prep for shipping, gotta get something in the slow cooker for dinner, doctor appointment, basketball practice, homework and another D.E.A.R. night is on tap. Without further ado, we have today's sketch from our Amy Crockett. You can check out Amy's blog here.

Enjoy your day,


Wednesday, December 9, 2009

25 Days of Sketches - Day 9

Technically, it is still Day 9. Sorry about the time; it was billing day today, and well . . . 'nuf said.

Quickly, here we go with a sketch from Nuts About Sketches. Quick pick for me and hopefully a quick assembly for you.
Back to the grindstone.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

25 Days of Sketches - Day 8

My, it's a whopping 3 degrees right now, with snow falling. I know some of you would think this is an awful day, but it's the perfect day for decorating -- cozy in the house, Christmas music is playing, I have mocha peppermint coffee, and the tree lights are on because I'm trying to get that darn little angle at the top of the tree to stand upright and she's fighting me on it. So, breath and take a break. Today's sketch comes from Becky Fleck at PageMaps. This great 2-pager is from October '08, but only has 5 photos, so should be a quick layout to pull together. If I recall, someone or someones, have some challenge in creating 2-page layouts. So, here's a little push out of the box, those that create the 2-pager shown, get an extra drop in the drawing. Use an AS kit and you'll get one more chance in the drawing.

Hope your Monday was relaxing and that your Tuesday is shaping up to be another good one. Photobucket

Monday, December 7, 2009

25 Days of Sketches - Winner Week 1

Couple housekeeping things, first. You can wait, right? (insert evil laughter here). Itzuvit was last week's Monday Challenge winner -- Itzuvit, can you please send me your shipping address ( and I'll get something in the mail to you. If you didn't see her card, it is simply gorgeous. Now on to the first week's sketch winner. Holy man, you ladies really cranked out some amazing layouts -- and a lot of them. Keep 'em coming! Linda R. was the winner of the first week! Congrats Linda -- you know the drill :D Now -- did you see the thermometer on the blog that tracks the weather in my little neck of the woods? It is 7 degrees!!! That's 7, as in seven! And it'll only get colder. Snuggle in tonight. Photobucket

Monday Challenge News

Hey ladies, you probably thought that I forgot about today's challenge...but not really. :-) Since we have the 25 sketches challenge going on Lori and I have decided to put the Monday Challenge and the Five on Friday challenges on hold. We all know that this is a busy season and we don't want to overwhelm you ladies with too many now you don't have excuses to not grab some sketches and get scrapping, lol. Monday Challenges and Five on Friday challenges will start again after this sit back, grab a snack and some sketches and let the scrapping begin. Now on to last week's winner: Itzuvit. Congratulations!!!! Happy Holidays, Bessie

25 Days of Sketches - Day 7

I hope your weekends were wonderful and warmer than mine. It's a whopping 16 degrees today, when the kids left it was 2 degrees, so quite the warm up. Outside of the cold, it was a busy weekend, but lots of celebrating. First, we had an indoor soccer game on Friday with a win for my 9 y.o. son against a girl's team, who played hard, but looked a little younger and less experienced than my son's team. Gives 9 y.o. boys some practice at being gracious winners. Saturday morning my 11 y.o. had his soccer game against another team from his club that is ranked just above my son's team. They and a 2-1 lead and in the last few minutes the other team tied it. But my son's team held the tie. Then at 11 am we headed over to my 11 y.o.'s basketball tournament. They had won their first game Thursday night, won their 11 am game and played again at 5:30 pm for the championship and WON! He was so excited - they all were. It was so fun to watch. My son got to bring home the trophy for safe keeping until today's school meeting. I managed with this crazy schedule to enjoy a quick coffee between games with my parents, get garlands up my staircase and, with the help of my older sons, wrestle the tree upstairs and set it up in the living room. Sunday was a totally "down" day. Church with my boys because we were at the tournament (DH and daughter went Saturday night), then home for a nice breakfast with the kids - DH was working at a local gun show all day Saturday and Sunday -- and sort of just puttered around doing little things. Nice after the crazy, but happy, Saturday. Closed out Sunday with some time spent in peace and quiet that evening. The three older kids, DH and I all sat in the family room and enjoy some D.E.A.R. time (drop everything and read). Each of us reading our own thing and just the quiet of it was . . . ahhhh. I am currently going through all the links from last week so that I can get a winner -- hopefully I'll finish that up today. Anyway, here's today's sketch and a sample. Thank you to Bessie, not only for the great sketch but the layout example as well.

Remember pick any three sketches from this week to create three separate layouts. Link them under the correct posts by Saturday evening to be eligible for a Cookie Jar Treat. Do all 25 sketches and become eligible for a Christmas Cookie Treat. Hope your week is off to a great start! Photobucket

Sunday, December 6, 2009

25 Days of Sketches - Day 6

Short and sweet since it's Sunday. This is the beginning sketch for this week. Choose three from this week, create layouts and add a link to the associated post by next Saturday evening to be eligible for a Cookie Jar Treat. Remember completing all 25 by the evening of December 28th will make you eligible for a Christmas Cookie Treat. Today's sketch is from 52 Sketches . . .52 Weeks
The hideous cold will keep us all tucked in today -- hope you enjoy a cozy Sunday, too. Photobucket

Saturday, December 5, 2009

25 Days of Sketches - Day 5

Sorry, sorry, sorry. I know this sketch is going up extremely late. I blame it on being utterly exhausted last night, up early for an 8:30 soccer game and, from there, going to a basketball game at 11; we still have one more game tonight at 5:30 for the championship. The sketch for today never crossed my mind until I started reading all the posts and thought "Dangit!" (well, it was a tad more colorful than that, but we'll keep in G-rated.) Anyway -- here's today's sketch, provided by our own Amy Crockett -- Thank you Amy! You can enjoy Amy's great blog here.

A couple reminders -- your three layouts from any three of the sketches posted for the week, are due tonight, linked up under the various posts. An AS kit will get you an extra entry. Do all 25 sketches and get in on a Christmas Cookie Treat -- which I have dropped a hint or two for. Have you seen? Do you have a guess?

I'm off to run around like a mad woman, while the 1 yo is sleeping, to get something accomplished for today. Anything.

Friday, December 4, 2009

25 Days of Sketches - Day 4

Ooo, it's going to be a sweltering day here today -- 33 degrees! WooHoo, break out the flip-flops and tanks. Sheesh, but after a few days of low-teen temperatures, it actually will feel nice. At least it's kept the snow we got a couple days ago around and it's so sparkly white. With the sub-freezing temperatures, everything is coated in a fine frost. With the sun coming up it's glittery, like little diamonds stuck all over. The downside is I don't go out when it's this cold, so Matthew (the 1 y.o.) and I get a tad stir crazy. The upside, at least this time, was I pulled up a fair amount of my decorations -- the little knick-knacky kind; the tree and garlands are still downstairs. I tamed the store room, schweet! I also spent the entire day cutting out hundreds of 1 x 16" strips of paper for my son's colonial/Native American day, some sort of weaving they are doing. It wasn't time spent all in one sitting, but I've never been so glad to finish cutting paper! Now, Linda R has a question -- "I know we have to post 3 LOs' by Sat each week. But, for the "all 25" challenge, can we go back and catch up, just so they are all posted by the 28th?" Hmm, good question. I will say yes, as long as all 25 are linked up to the various posts by the 28th you will be eligible for a Christmas Cookie. Our sketch today comes from our very own Bessie! Thanks Bessie. :)

Okay, I'm off to move furniture to make room for the tree, pack up some kits and try to get the garlands in the hall way. Coffee first, though.

Enjoy your day ladies!


Thursday, December 3, 2009

25 Days of Sketches - Day 3

First, Rebecca had a question: "can we use one page of a 2 page sketch to make a 1 pager?" Good question -- hmmm . . . I will say yes because this challenge, in a time of looming chaos, is about taking time for ourselves and completeing some pages while we do it.
Okay, so for today's sketch we have one from Julie Bonner of 52 Sketches...52 Weeks. Julie has some amazing sketches and her design team is also incredible, so if you need some inspiration, pop on over there. Julie also announced that she'll be taking a break in 2010, which made me very sad, but she has a wonderful archive of sketches and she'll still post one, once a month, on her personal blog.

Remember to be eligible for a week-end Cookie Jar Treat you need to choose three different sketches from the week and have links of the completed layouts by Saturday evening of that week. See the first post of 25 Days. . . for all the details.
Did I get any of the boxes unloaded yesterday? No. Did I bring up any decorations? No -- unless you count two wreaths -- one for the door and one for the family room. Did I get inventory righted? Mmm, sort of made a small dent. So I move on and try again today. Stay tuned . . .