Wednesday, June 30, 2010

waterpark vacation

We're home. I love family reunions! It was not a relaxing vacation, but we sure had fun! I only wish we had more time to sit around and chat. Not gonna happen with all the little ones running around. The grandparents were great and watched all the little ones one night while those of us in the "young parents range" went out for dinner--that was a fun time of catching up and eating dinner without interruptions. Here is a picture of all 47 of us in Wisconsin.

We stayed at the Glacier Canyon Lodge Waterpark Resort. I highly recommend this place! Everything was very clean and well organized. The indoor and outdoor waterparks come with your lodging--over 500,000 square feet of waterparks! We went to all of them over the four days we were there--and you can walk to all of them from your room. It's perfect for babies and adults. I didn't have my camera with me all the time because I was having fun in the water, but here are a few shots.

One of the baby and young children areas. (That's my brother and mom and the little cousins.)

One of the inside waterparks. On the right is a baby and young children area and to the left is the huge wave pool--hard to see. Behind these are a bunch of "grown up" slides/tubes.

Paige and Faith both went on this huge ride. It's a stairmaster workout for sure . . . you start out in the tubes and then go onto the slides that you see Tim and Paige on in the next two pictures.

Over a two-day period, Paige went on this ride about 20 times . . . which means one of us was walking up with her and carrying her mat for her. Talk about a workout. (I was nervous the first time I rode it!) Faith only got to go once . . . we didn't realize there was a minimum height until she'd already gone once--the lifeguard told us she couldn't go anymore--she was only an inch short. Bummer.

She found plenty of other big slides she could go on.

We discovered how much Seth loved the water. He even went under a few times and it didn't phase him.

I loved this resort because at all of the waterparks there were rides for every age. We could safely let our girls run off and play with their cousins while we played with Seth or went on rides ourselves (grandparents were around too!) There were lifeguards everywhere and they were very strict about safety. It was truly a carefree family vacation.

The only downer to the end of our trip was the plane ride home. We had 3-legs of flights, plus driving on either end. We discovered that our 11-month old could stay awake longer than our girls. He stayed awake 16 hours yesterday. While the girls slept on the third flight, he was a nightmare. He only screamed for 10 minutes, but we were constantly bouncing him or letting him crawl all over us the rest of the time. We slept so hard last night! There is something to be said for coming home and sleeping in your own bed. Now it's back to reality. Hopefully I'll be able to carve out some crafting time in the near future.

Hope you are having a great summer!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

and we're off!

Tomorrow we are leaving for Wisconsin Dells waterpark! My side of the family has a reunion every two years--there will be 47 of us this year. I can't wait to meet all the new little cousins! I'll be back in a week. Thought I'd leave you a card made with the recent Green Tangerines kit.

Have a great week!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

happy father's day

Happy Father's Day to three great dads. L to R. My FIL, Tim and my dad. You are all such blessings in our lives!

Saturday, June 19, 2010

camping here we come!

Tomorrow is Father's Day . . . and what better way to celebrate than to go camping! Tim is off of work for 2 weeks! We are going to camp for a few days, come home for a day and then go to Wisconsin for our family reunion at the Dells--tons of waterparks. Our kids are so excited! I am not excited about the 5-hour plane flight with an 11-month old . . . but, I am so excited to see my parents!

Here is a layout from our first ever family camping trip earlier this summer . . .

This layout was almost too simple. I simply put all the photos together in PSE and had them printed on 12x12 canvases. (The photos are all 3x4) I put little stickers (outdoor related) on several of the photos. They are from October Afternoon. What do you do when you run out of letters? Trace that letter onto your cardstock! That's what I did for this title. It breaks up all the blue in the title and I like it.

Hope you are having a great weekend!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

less is more

I went to an awesome homeschooling conference this past weekend and picked up a few tips. I'll let you in on a little secret I learned about how to get rid of TOYS in your house!

In the past, before birthdays, I've always asked the girls to go through their toys and pick out some things they'd like to give away to other children who don't have many toys. They pick out a few small things, but it has never amounted to much. I've been disappointed. Then I realized, my kids don't know other kids who don't have toys. They don't know what a third world country is like. They don't get it--regardless of how much we talk about it.

Anyway, moving on . . . here is the secret I learned from a mom/speaker with 7 kids. She said they don't have a ton of toys. The less toys they have, the less time the kids spend cleaning up and the more time they have to do fun things as a family--like playing games, bike riding--memory making activities. I shared this concept with my girls and they GOT IT!!! Between the toy bins downstairs and their room they filled 5 trash bags full. A few of the things I said, "Really, you want to get rid of that?" And they said, "We don't ever play with it." I let them be in charge. We saved a few things for Seth, but he will have plenty of birthdays ahead in which I know he will get more toys. Heck, back in the olden days, kids had one rag doll to play with and they were happy!

This is why you haven't seen me all week, I've been decluttering my house . . . it feels so good!

And now for you moms with boys or even girls you have a hard time doing homework with . . . and you don't have to homeschool to appreciate this next topic. "How to Teach Boys and Other Children Who Would Rather Build Forts All Day." Andrew Pudewa taught this seminar and he is HILARIOUS! I was laughing through the entire talk and yet I learned a ton. There are so many differences between boys and girls and how they learn. I learned some things about my marriage too. You can download the audio here for $3 or for my local friends, I bought the CD and you can borrow it from me. It's about an hour long and so worth the listen!

Sorry for the heavy writing, I just had so much to share! Have a great day! More crafty stuff to come . . .

Thursday, June 10, 2010

father's day

It's just around the corner. Do you have your card(s) ready? I usually don't until the night before . . . so this is a first for me! (I actually need to make one more for my father-in-law.) The only reason I got a jump on it was because I saw this incredible tutorial on how to make a shirt and tie! Helen has a ton of pictures and made it really easy to follow--it really was EASY! I'd always wanted to learn how to make one.

The pattterned paper is all from Jenni Bowlin as well as the tiny alphas. The bigger alphas are from Colorbok. I used this week's CPS card sketch.

Have a great night!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

haircut layout

When Faith got her real "first" haircut, I neglected to bring my camera . . . something I would have never done with my first child! So, she does not have the first lock of hair or any fun pictures to scrapbook. Oh well, I'm over it. What she does have is a layout about us attempting to fix her bangs that she chopped off right after turning three. These pictures were taken five months after the incident and as you can see, she still looks pretty funny. Oh well, it was a memory . . . one that I'm sure will bring a good laugh in years to come!

I wanted to use the blue letters on this layout, so I sanded them to make them stand out against the blue paper.

These are Scenic Route journaling chips. I love them! So sad that they went out of business. Underneath is a paint chip picked up at my local hardware store. Just adds a fun and unique embellishment. All of the other supplies are from the April/May Green Tangerines Kit. Just an FYI, the owner of Kit Club is taking a three month break from Kit Club while she works on reopening the the store. Kit Club will hopefully be back in full force by September!

Have a great day!

Monday, June 7, 2010

weekend getaway

This past weekend Tim and I got away for a whole 48 hours by ourselves! We try to get away once a year, but last summer I was pregnant so it didn't happen. We had planned on going to San Francisco for our getaway, but then Tim picked up a free trip to Reno. He test drove a car (which he didn't buy), and they gave him a free 2-night stay at the Grand Sierra Resort in Reno--AND I got a free massage! There were no strings attached. Now Reno would not be our first choice (or any choice really) to go since neither of us gamble, but FREE is always good.

We went to the nearby SCHEELS outdoor store and spent about 4 hours there. It is the biggest outdoor store I have ever seen! It even has a ferris wheel inside. We'll be taking our kids back there sometime. This is us standing beside one of their many animal displays.

The resort  had aqua golf which Tim thought was pretty fun. I attempted to hit one ball and it did not go so well. I sat and watched him the rest of the time. I will never be a golfer. No hand eye coordination.

We spent time lying by the pool, reading books and generally being lazy. We slept in till 8:45am one morning! We came back home very rested. Can't wait till our next getaway!

Be back soon with more crafty stuff!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

ella publishing magazine

One of my layouts made it in Ella Ezine (an online magazine)! So excited! My layout, "Your Dad" is about how great a dad/husband Tim is--they did a "Father's Day" section. My layout is towards the end of the article, so scroll down. It's a layout I did for Jillibean Soup awhile back. My good friend Kristen made it in the same magazine, same article with her fabulous "40 Reasons to Love Daddy" layout. So fun to be in something together! Check out the rest of their magazine while you are there, they've got some cute stuff!

Hope you are having a great day! I'll be back soon!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

owl card and our weekend

I played along this week with the challenge over on American Crafts blog and here is the graduation card I put together for my cousin:

The patterned paper and letter stickers are from American Crafts. The eyes, beak and feet are all made from American Crafts Thickers--letters. I'll show you how below. (I saw and owl similar to this in a Stampin' Up magazine a while back.)

These are the punches you will need. The circle punch is 1.75", but something close will do. The half inch circle punch on the end was used to punch the brown cardstock for the eyes. The white and black parts of the eyes were the "periods" from white vinyl thickers and black fabric thickers. But any white/black thickers will do. The small ticket punch was used on the green paper to make the hat (forgot to include that in the picture). The bottom part of the hat is about 1.5x0.5" and then I notched the top two corners with the punch (but you could just use your scissors). The top piece of the hat is 1.75"x a small sliver (didn't measure) and then I rounded the corners with scissors. To make the tassle, I tied a knot toward one end of the ribbon and then frayed the end with scissors. (You can click on the picture to make it larger.) For the beak and feet, I showed you which vinyl thickers I used and drew black lines where I cut. After I assembled most of the owl, I put him on with dimensionals, then I put the feet up under him just a tad. I hope I explained that well. Feel free to leave me a comment if you have any questions and I will be sure and respond.

Sunday-Monday we went on our second camping trip as a family (Faith did not get sick, thank goodness). We went to Folsom Lake which usually only takes us a half hour to get to. But because we went to a campground on the other side of the lake, it took us 1.5 hours to get to--the only spot available on a holiday weekend. Tim's brother, Doug, jet-skiied across from the side of the lake nearest our house and Tim took the girls on a ride. So fun!!

The girls spent most of the afternoon playing near the shore in the raft while Seth and I napped and then played in the dirt. Dirt really does taste good to boys I think.

On our way home Seth was not a happy camper in his car seat. We stopped at the American River for awhile and threw some rocks. Seth still was not happy when we hopped back in the car, but at least it gave us a sanity break. Oh the joys of long car rides with infants . . .

Hope you had a fabulous holiday weekend!