Saturday, October 29, 2011

Scrapbook 2-page Layout: Conner’s Choir

Concert Layout Left

Left Page of Layout

Concert Layout Right

Right Page of Layout

It’s so much easier to post pictures of digital pages. But, my scrapbooking is almost all traditional, so I’m posting one of my recent layouts. Actually, there are two 2-page layouts from this event. These are the last two pages. I used background cardstock from DCWV Performance stack. The die cuts and title are cut with Cricut Quarter Note.

Recently one of my good croppin’ friends, Kathy at, told me about a new product, Tim Holtz Tissue Tape. I used it on the large note on the right page. I made a collage on grungeboard with Tim Holtz Tissue Tape, inked it with Ranger Tea Dye, then cut the note with the Cricut. As I anticipated, the blade wanted to hang up on some of the strips of tape, but did not create enough of a problem to be a deal-breaker. Next time, though, I’ll do the cut first, then make the collage on top of it and trim the excess. Here’s a close-up of that element:

Close up of collage note

Thursday, October 27, 2011

More Cupcakes!

fall cupcakes

What can I say—I had some frosting left over that needed to be used….I’m learning….next time I will make one recipe of frosting (I doubled it last time).

I’m also learning about the consistency of the frosting. If it’s not fairly stiff, the frosting is limp and does not look pretty. For these, I kept the frosting very stiff—harder to use, but looks prettier. The sprinkles are Colorful Leaves from the Flower Medley by Wilton.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Husband’s 66th Birthday

God has blessed me with the most special man in the world. That’s grace. So undeserving am I.

Our son and family joined us for dinner (followed by watching the World Series game).
We started the meal with a new salad, Pear Endive Salad with Pecans and Goat Cheese, recipe from Panera. It was a huge hit! For recipe, click on Featured Recipes at top of page.
IMG_0221 IMG_0219
We usually don’t go “all out” with birthday gifts, but Mark surprised his dad with a 12-gauge shotgun (to use for bird hunting). I don’t think I’ve ever seen Russell so touched by a birthday gift. I think it was the combination of the gift itself, the fact that he really loves to go hunting with his son and grandson and did not have the proper equipment, and that his son wanted to give him such a special gift.
IMG_0224 IMG_0228IMG_0233
"Blessed is the man whose strength is in Thee, in whose heart are Thy ways." Psalm 84:5

Preparing Birthday Dinner

I’m making a birthday dinner for my husband. This will be his 66th. Wow. We usually go out to a nice restaurant to celebrate our birthdays, but since tonight is a World Series game, I wanted to make an old-fashioned, stay-at-home birthday dinner. I just took his “birthday cake” out of the oven, and the Italian Beef Roast is in the oven, to cook all day.

Apple Pie for BirthdayYes, this does look very much like a pie. I gave him a choice of what to have for his birthday dessert. He chose my special Apple Pie. (I could have made him a birthday cake, but I’m the one who likes birthday cake, so it would’ve been for me!)

For Apple Pie (and crust) recipe, click on “Featured Recipes” at top of page.

He’s spending his day “working” in the woods, while I prepare his birthday dinner. Feels deliciously nostalgic.

Will post more later about the birthday celebration.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

HUGE Cardinals Fan!

Yes, as my son said recently, we Cardinals fans are spoiled. It’s really incredible how many times we have been able to enjoy being part of the postseason, even just in recent years. We like to “make a night of it” for every game. Tonight is a big game, with the series tied 1-1.

We like to have special snacks on game nights. My sister gave me a recipe that was a big hit for Thursday night’s game. Click on Featured Recipes above for “Praline Pecan Crunch.”

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Musician Grandson’s Fall Concert

We are blessed to live close enough to two of our grandchildren to be able to attend some of their special events. Our grandson Conner, sophomore, is in the two top choirs in his high school, Up Tempo (12 members) and A Capella Choir. Last night was their concert. It was excellent. It was such fun to hear the great music, but also to see handsome Conner in a tux for the first time. As his sister said, “He cleans up good.”


  IMG_0177Up Tempo

Using my new zoom lens, I couldn’t get the whole group at one time—there are four more singers to the left of this picture.

 IMG_0173 IMG_0179 IMG_0180 IMG_0182 IMG_0185



A Capella Choir



     Conner changed out of his tux immediately!

IMG_0218_picnik IMG_0215

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Digital Page with Fall Photos

This digital scrapbook page uses some of the photos I blogged in my "Summer to Fall Transitions" post. I use digi pages for pictures I probably will not use for traditional layouts.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Cupcakes with Cricut Imagine Toppers


My mother would say I am a “glutton for punishment.” That’s what I am, taking on yet another “hobby” of sorts. But, in this case, cupcake decorating has a double purpose—I LOVE cupcakes. I mean really. I’ve been known to go by the grocery store and buy a container of cupcakes just for myself (they may even say “happy birthday” or have plastic toys, and I don’t even care).

But I also thought it would be fun to play around a bit with decorating. So, I visited a foreign section of Michael’s and pretended I knew what I was doing, purchasing a couple of “tips” and “bags.” I also picked up these little paper cups (cupcake liners) that have a cute Jack-o’-Lantern on the bottom.


I used the Cricut Imagine to print and cut the little pumpkin toppers. From the Enjoy the Seasons cartridge, I selected the pumpkin shape and filled it with one of the patterns on the cartridge. I cut them at 1.4 inches and then cut the same number of pumpkins on “flip” so that I could place them back to back and have a printed image on both sides. I used my Glue Glider to put adhesive on both unprinted sides, placing the toothpick on the bottom one before adding the top image.

I used Pillsbury Devil’s Food Cake Mix for the cupcakes and made the Buttercream Frosting from the recipe on the C&H Powdered Sugar bag. Wilton gel food coloring worked great for the orange and purple frosting.

These will be part of our snack for our small group Bible study tonight!


Saturday, October 8, 2011

Finally—my own script in a TrueType font!


Because it is a TrueType font, it is available for me in my own Microsoft Word, my email, etc., but my primary purpose is for scrapbook journaling or “personal” notes. As with any TrueType font, I can change the size, bold it, italicize, underline, etc. It is now also possible to spell-check my own handwriting (although spelling is one of my “things,” and I tend to question a suggested “correction”—just kidding…kind of…not really, I’m actually pretty serious…)

Here are the links for Darcy. (Note: I do not gain anything personally from this recommendation. This is not an affiliate situation—I just like to pass on a great discovery!)

Darcy Baldwin
*Custom Handwriting Fonts*

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Summer to Fall Transitions


(Taken from our upper level deck)

I love fall. It really is my favorite season. I also enjoy other seasons, and particularly the CHANGE that comes with each new season. But my favorite is fall. Always has been.

I love the sounds of fall, like the acorns falling to the ground with a thud, the leaves rustling as the squirrels are gathering those acorns, and the sounds of post-season baseball on TV, especially if the Cardinals are still playing.

I like the smells of fall, like the Pumpkin Bars baking, the fresh coffee in my cup while sitting on the deck, the Pumpkin Pie and Spiced Orange candles burning, cinnamon, the bonfire where we are roasting hot dogs and marshmallows. Closely related to the smells, I like the tastes of fall, like the Fresh Apple Pie, the Pumpkin Spice Latte, the caramel apples, homemade soups and breads, and all the wonderful tastes of Thanksgiving.

I love the sights of fall, like the pumpkins and the mums and the haystacks, the colors of the leaves, and all the colors of fall.

I love the fall. I like to hang out here. I don’t like it when the harvest season and Thanksgiving are rushed through, to get to Christmas. I like the thankful season.

One of the things I enjoy most about fall is the contrast I see as the “world” around our house transitions from summer to fall. We are blessed to live in a woods filled with lots of hard maples. I know this because my husband told me. He is the tree guru. He knows about trees. If you’ve ever had a conversation with him, you probably know why he knows all about trees (don’t ask him about cutting wood as a young lad, unless you have time for long stories—good ones, actually). You can ask him about any tree, and he can identify it for you—“That’s a water oak (insert sound of son’s laughter here—“There’s no such thing as a water oak, Dad…” Response: “That’s what my dad called it, so it’s a water oak...”…that’s a scaly bark hickory…a black hickory…walnut…that’s a pin oak, a white oak, a post oak, a red oak, a hickory, white ash, sycamore, cottonwood…” He knows them all.

For me, the important thing about having a lot of hard maples in the woods all around us is that the time of transition, from summer to fall, is the most beautiful time of the year where we live. This afternoon I grabbed my camera and just walked around the house, taking pictures of all the views. I asked my husband if this would be the best time to get pictures, or if the trees would get still prettier if I waited. He explained that some of the trees would get prettier, but by then some of them will have lost their color or the leaves will have fallen to the ground.

So, during the transition time, there remains a lot of green, providing a sharp contrast and a complementary backdrop for the trees whose leaves are already a bright yellow or orange. This is my favorite time. Perhaps I like it best because I like the color combinations better than after there is a lot of brown. But perhaps I like it best because I like the symbolism of green (summer) to orange (fall) better than orange to brown. Perhaps it’s all wrapped up in my “stage of life” (isn’t everything these days?), and I don’t like much of anything that tends toward the “brown” stage. But my husband also reminded me today that the trees are most glorious just before they turn brown. Maybe I will allow that thought to motivate me to make this the most glorious time of my life.

For me, for now, I enjoy this beautiful season (of the year, and, okay, also of my life).


IMG_0135 IMG_0128 IMG_0129 IMG_0130 IMG_0131 IMG_0132              IMG_0120  IMG_0122    IMG_0118

Monday, October 3, 2011

Pumpkin Bowl

For several years, our church has enjoyed a fall celebration called “The Pumpkin Bowl.” I’m not sure whether “bowl” refers to a “bowl game” or a “bowl of chili,” but both references are appropriate. The event is held on the 11 acres of property owned by RiverOaks Church, and this year we were blessed with incredibly gorgeous weather.

There were several activities occurring simultaneously, including face painting, bag toss, lots of good food, and the main event, a touch football game (with about 40 participants). It was personally fun for me to be a cheerleader for my son, grandson and granddaughter. I’ve always wanted to watch my son be a quarterback (not really, but it was okay this time, since it was touch football—at least I think that’s what they called it—I know there was no tackling and no flags—so it was all good).

The main “food” event is chili—and there were at least 18 entries in the Chili Cook-off this year.

This was my first event to attend with my new camera in tow: my first DSLR, a Canon Rebel T3i. I just snapped random pictures, didn’t worry about getting everyone. There was a HUGE crowd (parking was a challenge). It was a great time of fellowship!

IMG_0104 IMG_0081 IMG_0082 IMG_0083 IMG_0084 IMG_0085 IMG_0086


IMG_0087 IMG_0088 IMG_0089 IMG_0090 IMG_0091 IMG_0092 IMG_0093 IMG_0094

I even played around with my additional zoom lens. I’m so proud of myself (still kept the settings on intelligent Auto, though, so can’t be too impressed—hey, but I DID figure out how to mount it on the camera!). Following pictures using the zoom (I was comfortably sitting in my lawn chair, quite a distance from the playing field).


IMG_0097 IMG_0098 IMG_0099 IMG_0101 IMG_0102

It was interesting that our sermon yesterday morning (on the Acts 2 church) was a lot about fellowship. It was great!