Saturday, September 30, 2006


Today is the day for my friend Gina's son Nick's funeral. It has been an incredibly long week for her and I imagine it will be very strange for her when everyone goes home, school, work. Please continue to visit her blog and help her get through the next lil while...

Miles rushed home to get me yesterday, because the "conditions were just perfect for photography" on a local little lake. I tossed everything together and off we went. I am still getting used to my camera, and I ended up being frustrated as I managed to have my camera stuck in macro mode lol! It's adjusted now...

We have to practice our song list for Worship tomorrow at Church and the weekend is chock full of work for Miles. Next weekened will be spent with our folks at the coast so I need to get everything wrapped up. Have a wonderful day!


New Fall Desktops

Its time to redecorate your desktop for fall and there are some really pretty (and meaningful) desktops to be found at Crosscards. Just hit the link below.


Friday, September 29, 2006

I did say soon and it's soon alright - and I promised beautiful! Gina's Garden Kit is now available at Scrapbook Bytes. Its affordably priced and all the proceeds will go to the Nicolas DeLude Memorial Fund. Please visit HERE to buy your kit! Thanks for supporting Gina!


My Gina is getting through the week. It has been a very hard time, but she is holding up. I'm so very proud of her. I would like you to pray for her and the family as the next two days will be especially difficult. Today is the viewing and tomorrow the funeral. I'm hoping you will take a moment out of your day to leave an encouraging comment at her blog - and lift her in prayer. Also, keep your ears and eyes open, the Gina's Garden fund raising kit will be up any time at Scrapbook Bytes! (It's beaaaauuuutiful!)

Job 15:16

But my mouth would encourage you;
comfort from my lips would bring you relief.

Two messages - Joy - Miles got a gmail invitation from another friend, but THANK YOU for offering. Scrapcat - I wanted to send you a return email, however I don't have an email addy for you! I am so glad you found my blog again.

Remember how last week I confessed to you my embarassing moment - finding I had walked around town with a lenghth of toilet paper hanging out of my shorts? Well, I think I saw a man yesterday who felt even worse than I did on the humiliation scale. It was at our bank. I noticed as I walked in, an older man stooped and scooping...and swiping and wiping... and even had I not noticed him, I then SMELLED him. Poor fella - it so happened prior to my arrival he had brought in his dog, and the dog had diahreah right there inside the bank. After I stopped gagging I felt just terrible for him. Can you imagine? Good thing they did not have carpet...

Speaking of smell - I found a very interesting article this morning that I would like to share with you. It is about a VAMPIRE PLANT that SNIFFS OUTS ITS PREY. Yep, you heard me right. Slip on over HERE to read all about it.

Glitter Gourds

Of course I found this in an old back-issue of Martha Stewart (which could be a hint in itself - check out back issues for the season you are in) Take small pumpkins, or squash, and, with a paintbrush, spread white glue over the surface. Place the pumpkin on a paper plate or newspaper to catch the excess glitter. Sprinkle glitter (you can even use combinations of colour) over glue, covering completely. Let dry one hour then shake off the excess glitter. Coat stem with brown acrylic paint; let dry.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

The weather is just beautiful - I can't remember a fall as lovely.

I wish I could have enjoyed a bit of it yesterday, but I had my face in the computer all day. I'm writing tutorials for Miles for his students. The one I 'strangled' out yesterday was a beginner scrapbooking lesson using Photoshop Elements 4. This in itself is not a big accomplishment, but the fact that I was using a) open office ( a word processing program ) b) screen print ( a capture program) and PSE 4 - all of which I have never used before... and I actually accomplished my goal!

Besides this, I dealt w/ the library, cleaned the house and cooked a ham for the pot luck lunch at Miles school today!

I hope you all have a great day!


a DIFFERENT word processing program

I used Open Office yesterday as my word program. I do own my own copy of Microsoft Word, but when my computer took it's last crash I decided to try out Open Office because I had heard about it. Also, sometimes we have students at the school who are on a fixed income and Open Office is FREE. Perhaps you know someone who would enjoy it...I found it very easy to use and if you have used Microsoft Word before, this program is not much different. You can save your documents in many formats, including Microsoft word format.

I am providing the address from because that way, before you download, you can read the review there first!


Wednesday, September 27, 2006


Thank you all who are supporting Gina through this difficult time - your comments, prayer and financial contributions are a huge help. Don't forget, SBB will be launching a huge Gina's Garden Collaborative kit in the near future and all funds raised will help her family.

Hope you enjoy this butterfly element, I used it in my layout of Jeanne. This entire layout was achieved by layering etc, with the exception of those neat little dot things which are from Kristin Cronin Barow, and they are called doodledots.


Yesterday was a perfect fall day, with a crispness in the air, blue skies, tranquil lakes and an overall glow. Miles and I left home at 7 a.m. (this is early for me) and we drove a loop up and around part of the valley. We stopped at schools in OK Falls, Keremeos and Cawston. It was a 'picture perfect' day - so of course i went mad with my camera.


Free Contacts

Yes, more companies want to give you free stuff... Miles wears contacts, so we have printed out a certificate from both these companies.



Monday, September 25, 2006

It's Monday night and I am posting ahead for Tuesday because I will be away this morning, accompanying Miles as he makes his rounds in the valley to several schools in the district. I know you all will be looking for an update on Gina. Sonya Johnston has pulled it all together in the entry at this LINK

Please continue to keep Gina and her family in prayer, and we will keep you posted. Thanks so much for everyone's encouragment and kind thoughts - I know they mean a lot to her. What an awesome bunch you are. The love just bowls me.

If I don't get to post tomorrow, have a good day (I've been working on one of the benefit kits for Gina's Garden) and I will talk to you Wednesday. God Bless.

First of all - I know you're all wondering about Gina. She's been secluded with family so nobody has talked to her yet, but Sonya Johnstone contacted her church and if you click HERE you can read the latest update. Our hearts just go out to Gina and your family. You will read also on the post, that there's a HUGE collaboration going on to create a kit called 'GINA'S GARDEN' which will go on sale in the near future at SBB, with the proceeds going to Gina's family. We hope you'll pour out your love on her. If I feel like my heart is being ripped out... how much worse it must be for your family, G.

It was incredible to me how an instant changes everything. I've had people ask me how this feels, as a friend, and I can only describe it this way: you put yourself in your friend's shoes - emotionally and TRY to imagine what they must be feeling. Secondly, you wish you could take their pain, and you feel so darn helpless. You comb Gina's blog to want to share her journey with her, to labour in the pain with her. But your always on the outside. You can be here to support her, but you can't BE her - and you simply wait, and pray. And then... Sonya, bless her heart, turns the waiting into action and establishes a 'something we can all physically do' which is create a kit dedicated to G. I'm so proud to call you freind Sonya, your a ROCK!

In the meantime, will you please continure to pray for the family? This will be the ultimate testing of faith anyone could face - but I know, that I know, that I KNOW, that my Sister Gina will walk in God's love thru this and we will be waiting to encourage her when she comes thru.

On a happier note: Its Kristin Cronin-Barow's birthday today. Now Kristin is a pretty shy lil gal, but I'm sure it woud be totally acceptable to leave her a birthday comment on her blog, found here... while you visit beg her to put up more new content and pics there as she is a photographer extrordinaire...


More Free Stuff!

Don'tcha just love when companies give out free samples? Why not try out the new SUNSILK shampoo. Just visit the following link and you can locate the free sample form and voila - we will all be enjoying a free sample a few weeks from now!


Sunday, September 24, 2006

I won't be blogging today.

My friend Gina's son was in a terrible skateboarding accident and he may be gone as we speak. Please pray for her and her family.

Friday, September 22, 2006


Before I get anywhere here... and now that Blogger is cooperating... I need to share the birthday card made for me by my sweetie! I have been so frustrated not being able to post it for DAYS now... and of course Miles keeps visiting to see if it's up!

Yesterday was loads of fun and a learning curve for me. I spent the day at the Learning Center and I took Jeanne, one of our students, out and gave my camera a good workout. The weather cooperated and I managed to get some good shots that I could work with. While I was shooting we were visited by a squirrel who was angry at us for taking over his spot - so he got his portrait taken as well.

cardboard: Gina Miller BYOBB
blue background and alpha: Ronnie McCray MARITIME
white straight stitch: Charlene Runge
workhorse brown paper: Michelle Coleman
funky frame: Meridith Fenwick
stickpins: Jenn Starr - merged together with ...
flower by Kim Christensen

doodledots: Kristin Cronin-Barow - Coconut Bliss Kit
pewter decoration: Kristin Cronin-Barow - Coconut Bliss Kit
yellow and blue papers: Kristin Cronin-Barow - Coconut Bliss Kit
ribbon: Kristin Cronin-Barow
flowerstamp: Kristi Cronin-Barow - Lushious Tropics kit

In all, I am very happy with how the photos, and subsequent layouts turned out! If you like the Layout that I made using Kristin's soft, sumptuous kits (a bday prezzy for me... THANKS K!)... they can be found at A CHERRY ON TOP



Save Those Seeds!

When you cook squash, don't throw the seeds away! They make a great snack if you toast them. To make, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Scoop out the seeds and pat dry. Toss with extra virgin olive oil to coat, and season with coarse salt. Spread on a rimmed baking sheet and bake 12 to 15 mins, until golden and crisp. Store in an airtight container at room temp for up to 3 days!

Thursday, September 21, 2006


I woke this morning to the sound of rain pattering outside and a sound that made me think of a duck taking a bath in a pond. This was Miles, shaving. (rinsing his razor) He's such a sweetie - getting up ahead of me and making me fresh coffee to wake up - not instant, not drip - no the real thing for me, fresh french pressed! As I come out to the computer I notice the light coming in thru the kitchen window has a new quality to it and I open the curtains to discover a fresh scrubbed earth outside. The colors are subtly changing with fall and the sunshine is bright but holds no heat.

Janice came over yesterday while the boys were in pre-school - yes, little Zach is already in pre-school! We spent the afternoon picking out her camera and all the accessories online at London Drugs. Woo Hoo! She will go pick it all up this weekend and next week we will be able to post tons of pics! I am so excited for her.

She brought me a dozen farm fresh eggs. Do you like 'em? They conjure up all sorts of warm thoughts in my mind as even as a child I knew how special they were. Seeing the rich brown shells and the rich, lemony yolks causes me to dream of making lemon merangue (sp?) pies and cream puffs and omlets... So, when she arrived with them in hand I already had plans to make a big fritatta using the ingredients on hand. It turned out perfect, filled with asperagus, onions, sun dried tomatoes, salami, basil leaves and various cheeses. Perfect for fall, for breakfasts, lunches or suppers. If you would care for my recipe please email me at

Smell-less Onions

We all know how one tiny sliced onion can affect the entire contents of our fridge... Here's a clever solution someone passed along to me. Use a large glass jar with a tight sealing lid. Mark the top of the jar so it will be dedicated only to onions. Store any sliced onion inside the jar - you will be able to clearly see the contents and they won't smell up your fridge!

Wednesday, September 20, 2006


Yeah, its time to make salsa, baby!

I woke up feeling good yesterday and the sun was shining and I looked forward to the walk to my friend's house so I could look for photo opportunities. I gave myself plenty of latitude in the time department because often a 10 minute walk can easily stretch into 1/2 hour. I found little slices of God all around and my camera was in and out of its bag so often that I should have just left it hanging around my neck. Yes, I was feeling good.

I helped my friend Elaine organize her photos - she wanted to find a system so it would be easy, and also wanted the ablility to make CD's. I got her fixed up right and I will leave the link for the program I recommended below, as today's tip. She and I had a nice cup of tea before I left in the sweetest little yellow and blue teapot - isn't there something extra special about tea with a good friend? As I was leaving, she prompted me to turn around as I was leaving... and pointed out that I had a nice length of toilet paper fluttering out of the back of my shorts. LOL... all of a sudden you instant replay your entire mornings walk back in your head to wonder if anyone else noticed. How totally embarassing. C'mon - I want to hear your stories, you've got to have one. I remember one time my Gramma told me that as she was heading out for an event that she grabbed her hairspray, not knowing it was RAID... well, she said she was not bothered by bugs all day... he he.

I also took a side trip to the thrift store... and came home with four of the the most adorable teapots - hey, I was still warm and fuzzy from my tea with Elaine, and my friend Gina is the Tea Queen... how could I not?

I was cruising the net this morning and came across a video of Bindi giving tribute to her Dad, Steve Irwin and its worth the time to go see it. You can view it HERE - what a little sweetie - so brave and articulate. It will be awesome to watch what she does with her future.

Organize your Photos

You need PICASA if you don't already have it. It's free and its easy and has some great features. If you already have PICASA you might be interested to know there is a new version out now, that also allows you to do web albums - and its so so easy to use. If you are a novice computer user you will appreciate some of the wonderful small fixes you can do in it. You can organize easily and watch slideshows full screen. PICASA is put out by GOOGLE and is rich in features.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006



Yes, blogger is giving me the run around again - taking forever to upload my pics, but I'm just glad I got this element up for you. I've seen in stores where you can have your photo printed onto a plate, so I figured hey, I can do that digitally! I liked the little flowers so I have just cut out the center area for you to slip your picture into. The download does not come w/ a drop shadow, so you have to add your own.

I spent yesterday morning at Miles school. I'm volunteering to help students learning to scrapbook - mostly with Photoshop Elements 4. I hope I will be a help, but yesterday made me aware that I can also be a hinderence, if I am not careful. See, I love Digital Scrapbooking SO MUCH that I can be a tad overwhelming at times - and it happened yesterday for sure.

I was spending time showing a woman around PSE4, SBB, ACOT and well, everywhere, and the entire time I was doing this she would insert little questions to me. Questions like "Do you spend a lot of time on your computer" - that kinda thing and of COURSE I do... Turns out, all these questions I was asking her, she was using how I answered to make the decision if she would take a course. See, I guess I could consider myself an advanced user at this time, and I guess, what comes easily to me looks like greek to others. They just can't imagine themselves doing it. So I have to be careful to show what they COULD do, not what I MYSELF can do.

But I was also blessed to spend time to show a young woman around too - and she just ate up every word that came out of my mouth. You could see the wonder in her eyes, and it gives me resolve to teach her everything I know.

I thank God for the ability to share the knowledge I am blessed with.

Candle Holder Tip

To prevent the wax from melting and sticking to the inside of a votive candle holder, pour a bit of water in the holder, then place the candle on top. If you forgot the water and there's wax stuck to your candle holder, pop it in the freezer for an hour. The wax will chip right off.

Monday, September 18, 2006


Well, its looking like Blogger doesnot want me to upload my pictures of the weekend - and I'm not about to fight w/ it as I've learned Blogger is more stubborn than me... at least I got to put an element for you. I really, really wanted to put up a pic of the birthday card that Miles made me, but photoshop won't open it. Its a typical Monday.

First of all - CONGRATULATIONS SARAH - she's having her first baby! This is an exciting time for you and we will keep you in our prayers, and of course, I will create an element specially for you in the near future.

CONGRATS go out to ALISON (link to left) as well, for she just got hired for a new job! Way to go!

I will try to post some pics in the next few days. The weather on Friday was like me... moody. I think with all the hurry and stress and excitement lately my emotions were like the proverbial pressure-cooker and it ended up with me 'blowing a gasket' in Tonasket (rhymes pretty nicely, hey?) Poor Miles - he's come to the realisation that when I get to that point he better give me 5 to walk around and cool down because I feel like a trapped wolverine. Yes, this is me.. I feel its important to share w/ you so you know I have good and bad days just the same as you.

I used to boil over quite often, but Miles the Lion Tamer has gentled my heart to the point it happens very rarely, and he just loves me right out of it. I think it used to scare him, in fact, it used to scare me. It usually disappates quickly and then we can laugh about it. Miles is always gentle and that helps me a lot. We kind of have a joke - when I'm sweet all the time he calls me Polly (short for Pollyanna) and so when I was mad he was calling me Godzilla, which we married to Polly and now I was dubbed PollyZilla for Friday.


A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.

The weather cleared up for Saturday and Sunday, and we actually had a great time together and got some much-needed rest. I got to use my camera lots but need to learn more, more more. Imagine my surprize and disappointment to find that all my amazing pics I took for most of the trip were sized to only 800 x 600 pixels...sheesh!

Nuff for now. You all have a good monday!

An Apple a Day

Truly, this is a simple tip, but it is fall, and apples abound, fresh and inexpensive. We live in the Okanagan, so we can actually go right to the packing house and pay only .25 lb! Also, I think I can't find one person I know who is not dieting right now.. so I think the following article is valuable for you to know why you should be eating them apples! Personally - I love to just core and cube an apple, add 1/4 cup trail mix (raw kind) and sprinkle with Watkins Cinnamon for a quick and tasty snack - before I'm tempted to go for something unhealthy!

Sunday, September 17, 2006

This touching layout is made by my dear Sister In Law, Judy. I could not have found a nicer sister in law myself, if I had to pick one. You are the heart of my heart Jud and I love you more than you could know. Thanks for your prayers and encouragement and friendship over the years.

A sister is a gift to the heart, a friend to the spirit, a golden thread to the meaning of life. ~Isadora James

Friday, September 15, 2006

Oh, Gee!

Thats what I say pretty much every day! Oh, Gee - I better get some breakfast into me, 'cuz my friend Gina will be checkin' He He - This girl keeps me on track, inline, accountable, in stitches - in delight. Gina "took me in" from SBB chat too, along with Sonya, a while back. She took a chance on us and the rest is history. We all spent some time together on Hello and it wasn't very long before that magical place of friendship was cultivated.

A more dedicated and devoted friend, there's not. I felt connected from day 1 - meeting you in 'real life' was no surprize in reality - somehow we already live in each other's houses before that day! Since then, I eagerly anticipate chatting to you daily - you keep me grounded, you keep me accountable, and I love that you have such a heart for God. Thank you for every moment we share - you make my days magical. Thank you for the georgeous layouts - I will cherish them!

For those of you who do not know Gina (Mrs. G to me) scoot on over to her blog, link to the left, Craftealady. Spending time w/ Gina is like having tea with your dearest friend every day. I think if you read her blog you will see what I mean.

God gave us the gift of friendship so we could know His love on earth.

A faithful friend is beyond price;
his worth is more than money can buy.

Thank you Kristin, for this lovely birthday layout. It brings back the day that we met, like it was yesterday. It still amazes me that we connected so quickly and how I can't remember what it was like not to know you, you know?

You inspire me to be a better friend and Christian Woman and I love sharing our days together. You're warm and funny and interesting and generous. I'm so glad you took a chance on getting to know me - its enriched me in ways you cannot even know.

For those of you who do not know Kristin Cronin-Barow, she's a talented designer (A Cherry on Top), wife and mom. Please check out Kristin's blog, link to the left!

The love of a friend is the most powerful love on earth.

A faithful friend is a secure shelter;
whoever finds one has found a treasure.


These are two layouts made for me for my birthday by Sonya Johnston. Many of you will know Sonya as a talented designer from Scrapbook Bytes For those of you who don't - g'wan over there and search for Sonya's gallery and get to know her - she's Quality People!

I met Sonya a few years ago while in a chat at SBB. I was a newbie-scrapper, needing lots of encouragement and one-on-one and Mrs. Sonya took me under her tender wing (ack - not her armpit, silly!) She invited me to her Hello chat - little knowing that we would soon spend every day together. We have cultivated a very close friendship over this time and she has enriched my life in so many ways. Besides being a talented designer, she is a loving wife, mommy to two adorable (Bubs) twin boys and a friend extrordinaire. Well, I could just go on and on but I will simply encourage you to get more 'quainted w/ my Son - her blog link is to the left of my blog entries. Thank you Sonya for being a rock in my life. You brighten my days and I can't imagine one without you. Thank you for the lovely birthday present, and I look forward to many, many more together.

I'm so proud to call you friend.

You have filled my heart with great joy

Thursday, September 14, 2006


I hope you don't have a problem downloading this element from megaupload. I usually use sendspace but it was down this morning. Sorry if you have to dodge the advertising! I created this element, originally, for my friend Lisa (lisabranka to you who go to SBB) for her daughter, and I originally put a special sentiment on it for dd (scrap lingo for dear daughter) who, at like early teen in age, has sewn a prize winning quilt! Next, I got a request to do a heritage element - does this qualify? I'm game to try anything if you send me a request.

my new best friend, ha ha

Ok.. so I've got my new camera... and yesterday my friend Alison and I headed up to Spotted Lake for an hour or two of photography. I really enjoyed the time together, and what a beautiful way to share a morning. I'm hoping she will share some of her snaps to... in case she does you can find her HERE. She has a great eye for composition. I can't wait to see what her gallery unfolds to be over the future.


And, my poor husband. He's thinking by now that someone turned the papparazi loose. He's being greeted at every corner by this big fat 'ol lens sticking into his face - can't even get in the door. (giggle) He's learning he better have a big smile pasted on his face when he arrives.


I am going to take a 3 day break here from blogging. Its my birthday and I don't want to share my time with anyone except my honey. All I will share is this pic. he he. So you all have a good weekend. Please pray for the staff, school and families of the Montreal School Shooting Tragedy.

Cute Someone Today

We have the ability to encourage one another - to brighten up someones day is definately a gift that gives back. In this broken world its sometimes hard to find a place that is almost childlike in it's innocence, a place where you can go and be moved by the tiniest of joys. The bible tells us to keep our mind at these places, in the following scripture:

Phillipians 4:8

Finally, brothers,
whatever is true, whatever is noble,
whatever is right, whatever is pure,
whatever is lovely,
whatever is admirable—
if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.

With this thought in mind, though the following link is extreme-ly cute, enjoy a little time away from the REAL WORLD, and send it on to someone else who could use a smile too. Please, tell me what you think is the cutest thing you see here...

Wednesday, September 13, 2006


This highly lickable element - no, dont' go licking your screen, is dedicated to Kristin who shudders to see me putting up my fall elements, as she is not ready to let summer go... Take a good lick Kristin, its pretty much gone, girl. Ahem, I'm not the only one who thinks so... you don't see Walmart and Target pushing the bikinis anymore... sorry to shatter your sweet summery thoughts.

Speaking of Ice Cream (and my tip today will be Ice Creamy too) I read the following article in the July edition of Popular Science Mag:


Turnip sundae, anyone? The world's first all-vegetable "ice-cream" debuts in European freezers this year. Germany's Fraunhofer Institute has concocted a frozen dessert from the seeds of the blue lupin flowers, turnips, and other vegetables, without a drop of dairy, cholesterol or saturated fat. The magic ingredient is a chemically modified protien that mimics ice cream's cream texture and melting behavior.

SO.... your all wondering, WHAT WAS HER PRESENT YESTERDAY???? Ok, I will come clean w/ you all. It is a Samsung Pro 815 Camera. I picked it out this summer and all the pieces fell together that we could afford it just now. How sweet is that. My new toy has more features than I can possibly tell you about, including text recognition and video in stereo. Sheesh. I have barely learned how to turn it on! You can read all the specs HERE.


So, today's entry will be short, as my friend Alison (link in my links list) is coming over and we are going to play w/ our cameras.


And just before my tip - do you all remember when I gave a link for Lee Kum Kee for a free sauce? Well, yesterday, in the mail I recieved my free sample, mailed to me all the way from California. I got a mongolian sauce, which I am totally looking forward to!

Give Someone (yourself, included) a Free DQ Blizzard

I will always remembered with a small gift on my birthday - from DAIRY QUEEN. See, last year sometime, I signed up for the DQ Blizzard Fan Club, and thought no more about it. Oh, they send me a newsletter each month to tell me about the newest Blizzard, which is really nice. But, imagine this - just before my birthday for the past two years, I recieve an email from them just before my birthday and it has a printable coupon attached for a free blizzard (buy one get one free) How sweet is that! Why don't you sign up yourself and email an invitation to all your family and friends!


Tuesday, September 12, 2006


Yesterday was bittersweet for me. A big part of me felt I should blog 9-11 but I just couldn't do it. I just couldn't face the enormity of addressing it in any fashion. It's bittersweet x2 because Sept. 11 is also the anniversary of the passing of my Stepmom. I have to tell you that the emotions mixed up with this are a tangled mess. When I was young, I looked at the arrival of Mom as an intrusion into my life. We were six kids without a mom - due to addiction and a hard life my biological mom left when I was six. Anyhow, my stepmom came along, with a baby of her own (a BIG no-no in those days) and she took on the (get this) advertised job of housekeeper/nanny to us six kids. We were a BIT on the wild side and we sure were'nt going to make it easy for her.

When she came to us, she was almost 'fresh off the boat' from England, and she had some very prim and proper ideas. I can't imagine what it must have been like for her, really. In fact, I really never tried to realize what it was like for her, generally I was thinking of myself. And I was the poor stepdaughter (the only girl at the time of six boys - so I allowed myself to feel somehow upset of the intrusion of Mom in my Dad's affections)

Mom, over the coming years, with all the pressures of raising 8 (yes, she and Dad had my sweet sister, Nina) (and along w/ her son, our brother, Stephen) she became dependent a little too much on alcohol. She and Dad would work hard all week - yes, she worked full time as well as looked after us, and on weekends they sometimes hit the bottle - I imagine they needed something to take the pressure off. So, because of this I targetted on the bad stuff and my years with my mom were turbulent.

My Dad has been gone for years now, but Mom only a few. After my Dad passed on, she didn't drink anymore. I did have the sweet opportunity to re-connect with her - but SO MUCH TIME MISSED. Now that I'm older and wiser, I now see how selfish I was, and its my great loss. I truly mourn the loss of getting to know her, really know her. I am so blessed that my sister Nina and I have cultivated a friendship and sisterhood that was missing for a long time. When I stopped being jealous of the cutest little girl in my Daddy's life and started to get to know the graceful woman that my sister has grown to be... when the great gap in years between our ages did not matter any more - I come to tears to thank God for my sister.


Honor your father and mother"—
which is the first commandment with a promise—

One thing of great comfort to me, is knowing my Mom found God before she passed on. She forgave me and I know I am forgiven - not what I deserve.

Be Magnified

You may be hard of seeing, or you know someone who is. I've located a nifty little program which allows you to magnify parts of your screen, and its FREE. No need to have to make the computer screen look HUGE, in the properties, just install this neat program and you will be able to bring releif to someone who might not see so good. When you clik the following link it will take you to the preview page - scroll down and it will give you an idea of what it does, before you decide to install it. This program would be ideal in settings like my husbands workplace where they teach computers to people up in their 80s!

Yes, today is b'day present day... and no, no one has guessed it yet... but I'll still make y'all an element...just email me at and tell me what you would like me to make for you!

Monday, September 11, 2006


Howdy Doody!

If I come off as a little goofy today, its because I am. I'm goofy because I'm at my husband's school helping out and that makes my heart smile. Not that there is a lot of call on my limited knowledge, but it is a great time to catch up with some of last year's students. The second reason I'm so lighthearted is because worship went well yesterday - I don't know why I was so nervous 'bout it - but several of you prayed for me and I am sure this carried me thru. The third reason that I am tickled pink is because its only one more sleep 'bfore I get my BIG birthday present. Yah, I know, I should have to wait for the 'official' day (Friday) but I'm very spoiled. I won't share here what I'm getting, tho a select few do know already. Sheesh, if I didn't tell my closest, the stick to me like a burr closest friends, why, I would have simply burst by now! You all will have to wait ... like I have been, one more sleep 'till I have it in my warm little paws. Hint: you will be able to enjoy my present too... guess it and I will make you an element - dedicated to you...

I was up at 6 a.m. (yawn!!!) to make Pepper, Pepperoni and cheddar biscuits for the troops at the school. If I get to help folks then I want their brains to have good fuel, you know!

Since I am at the school, I really can't blog because I have to keep myself available, so I'm going to leave you with a tip for today, and will catch up w/ you all tomorrow.

The Font Thing

I always assume that everybody in the world knows about The Font Thing - but not everybody does. The Font Thing is a FREE little program that allows you to preview fonts without being in another program. Scrapbookers will delight in this program. You may learn more about it and download it at the following link:

Sunday, September 10, 2006


Just a short entry today. Have to get ready to lead worship music with Miles this morning and I am as nervous as a cat on a raft. We have not led in close to a year and my pipes are very rusty. I will be fine if no one runs screaming from the sanctuary w/ their hands over their ears.

A big chunk of yesterday was eaten up with preparing basil. Our dear friend Italia grows the most amazing basil ever, and she calls us before she plans to tear the plants up. As you can see, I had plenty of picking, drying and freezing to do.

Enjoy your day!

Send 'em a Cutout

I found this terrific site for Cut Outs - of almost anything! I'm thinking they would be terrific for place settings, kid activities or to tuck into greeting cards! You will have to see what I mean - I am very impressed. You can find them here:

Saturday, September 09, 2006


I went out with my friend Rose on Tuesday. Rose showed up in high heels. She's a very tiny person so the heels looked great and gave her height and I was flattered she would care enough to dress up for me. Specially, considering we were heading to the thrift store. Imagine my surprize when she confessed to me she was wearing them, intentionally, to slow her down! Rose is the goingest person I know, with a laundromat as a family business and the Dairy Queen second home after that (she decorates a mean ice cream cake!) There's no grass grows under this lady's feet - so - because she's found she is rushing around so much lately she has donned high heels in order that she would have to slow down a bit. I thought that was cute.

So, Rose needs to slow down and enjoy life a bit. I've another friend who's son was recently in an accident. He's o.k. (whatever that means) but while we were talking my friend confessed to me it made her realize how fragile our sense of 'normal' is - how some event like this makes you realize what is REALLY important in life. And in mentoring to another friend, and talking about marriage, I had her imagine (God Forbid) what would be important, what would she wished she would have done if her husband were snatched away from her tomorrow... and to think on those things and change them now. It sure brings the important things in our lives to the surface.

I guess what I'm trying to say is: TREASURE YOUR LIFE - don't wait for it to change. This may be the best time of your life - no matter whats happening right now. And don't wait for circumstances to change - you might be waiting forever. Take control and enjoy the blessings in your life. Cherish normal. Normal may seem boring but it can actually mean good things, like everyone's healthy and happy in your life.

Matthew 6:20

But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal.

Matthew 6:21

For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

Take stock of your wealth - and I don't mean ANYTHING physical - truly your treasures are in heaven. In your mind strip away all things physical and what's left, that brings you joy, is your wealth. Know that some people in the world have money but not happiness. Hey, Oprah makes $432 dollars PER MINUTE and I will tell you what folks, she is not one bit HAPPIER than you and I. I know thats hard to wrap your mind around, but its true. And if you believe she's happier than you then you better start examining your own life. Yes, I believe she's got more stuff than us, but she can't be happeir than me! The key is to be happy with what you have, right now. And know that if you are actually content and happy with what you have right here, right now - imagine what God has in store for us in heaven. The bible tells us that heaven is very special - and if God says its special it must be some beautiful.

Our life here on earth is just rehearsal - know this and keep all the important things in focus. Don't go grasping onto physical wealth or things to cling on to your stuff. Make sure when your last day comes, and it can come at any moment, that you have invested more into your loved ones and people than you've invested into taking care of possessions. Don't be fooled into thinking you can keep a piece of anyone - you can keep their things, but not them - contrary to the idea in the following website which trys to sell you a diamond made out of a strand of your loved one's hair. (HERE)

JOB 20:20

Surely he will have no respite from his craving;
he cannot save himself by his treasure.

My Scary Dream Picture
Created using Photoshop CS

Thirst Quenching Sports Drink

Don't spend $$ on those sports drinks. I've perfected a recipe for a simple sports drink you can make at home. It's great tasting and thrist quenching. Mix 1/4 cup BROWN sugar, packed, 1/3 cup lemon juice, pinch of salt, tons of ice and water to taste!

Friday, September 08, 2006



Today's entry is all about scrapping - not fighting with anyone, its about scrapbooking, digital scrapbooking in fact. I have been scrapping for a couple of years now and I can't imagine my life without it. Scrapping is an art form for me. It allows me to define what my life is about and express it on paper. As much as my 'traditional' art (painting and drawing) allows me to share who I am, digital scrapbooking allows me to organize the moments of my life with others.

There's an entire community of scrappers 'out there' and I've made some terrific friendships. I've personally never met a cold or indifferent person online who scraps. I've benefitted from the experience of many designer friends. This is one huge family and I'm so glad to have found my niche here.

my own design and elements

This brings me to a particularly distasteful subject. Most designers I know occaisionally give out free items on their blogs, for us all to enjoy. Do you know that people actually STEAL these free items? I know your begging to know how this is possible, and rather than me type out a huge explaination about this I will encourage you to take a visit to the blog of Rina Kroes who has recently been taken advantage of this and offers a complete explaination. You can visit her HERE Also, there is an entire website devoted just to the subject of piracy alone - how sad that we actually need one, hey? Just because it's free does not mean your not stealing. Visit Stop Piracy HERE

Leviticus 19:11
Do not steal.
Do not lie.
Do not decieve one another.

Now, the digital community is a close knit one and there are some terrific sites to help even the novice get going, with videos and radio and what-I-knows... here are some sites I find very helpful:

DIGISCRAP (tutorials)
DIGI SHOPTALK (radio - in fact they have a session on piracy!)

These are just a few - there are so many more.

paper from the fall pack at CWO

Listen to Free Radio

Get tired of listening to the same old stuff? Why not check out LIVE.365

After registering free, you can access radio stations of every genre, from all over the world - for free. There is everything from the Muppets and Math stations for kids, to classical, sci fi and old time radio with the old shows as well. You can even set 'presets' of your favorite stations! Visit LIVE.365 HERE

Thursday, September 07, 2006


Smoke continues to hang in our valley, thick and heavy. It makes for georgeous sunsets, and the moon hangs like a big cheese-ritz cracker in the sky at night, but I am sure these observations bring no joy to anyone who has breathing problems, or is worried about the loss of their property. From what I could gather this morning from the radio, the fire crews have the tiny community of Eastgate - by Manning Provincial Park, on evacuation alert. Won't you pray for these folks, take a moment out of your day. You can see what our town looks like with the smoke by visiting the Sandy Beach Motel live webcam HERE

Pray, also, for the firefighters - they put their lives on the line for us all. You may want to share the following link with them and their families - its a link for Firefighters for Christ - and there is a worship music mp3 download for them. Check it out HERE

My friend Janice, and her sweet boys stopped by for our first visit since before summer. What a blessed time together! The boys gave me biiiiig hugs and headed for the toys! Janice and I drooled over photography magazines. Janice's dream is to 'do' photography - and she certainly has the eye for it. With a young family to raise, she only recently recieved the funds to finally realize her dream of purchasing a 'GOOD' digital slr camera. She's asked Miles and I to come with her (what a huge compliment!) when she goes to pick out 'the one'.


Clip and Print those Coupons!

Did you know...

(keeping you in suspence)

Did you know that you can actually print out manufacturers coupons ONLINE? Yes, its absolutely true. I found one link through a magazine article which caused me to go sniff out more links for you all online! The link which I found was for a Canadian website, so I also looked for some for you folks in the U.S. Who does not like FREE?

I also went to the local dollar store and picked up, for $1.50, a nifty little plastic organizer which has little sections inside.


Happy Coupons

Coupon Surfer


For Free in Canada

Free Stuff For Canadians


All Good Coupons

Mommy Saves Big

Wednesday, September 06, 2006



Sorry that my element is coming seperate from my blog post, but Blogger was messing with my mind this a.m. - and I'm not going to play! This element is dedicated to Sarah, who was kind enough to email me some great sites for file sharing (PS: I'm working on somthing else for you too!)


Please keep my friend Gina's family in prayer. Her son was in an accident, and though he does not have life threatening injuries it is a very difficult time for the family. How suddenly our life can change. I was ruminating on this all day, yesterday. After hearing about Steve Irwin my mind went immediately to his wife and family. Even though his risk was far greater to be injured or killed was completly increased due to his lifestyle, I'm know it hurts none the less. Every moment becomes more precious when we ponder that only God knows when our last one on earth is - and those of our loved ones. It 'wobbles' our world when tragedy strikes within the cirlce of those we know - for in the back of our mind we can't fully accept it won't happen to us. It's hard to know exactly what God wants from us at these trying times but I do know He wants us to pray for each other.

ROMANS 12:12
Be joyful in hope,
patient in affliction,
faithful in prayer.

First the school, now our own home, and today, I will look after ... me! I'm talking about make-overs. I'm on a roll and now that the structures are all looked after I'm thinking I should touch up my 'lil self. Cleaning is hard on your nails, gals - so I'm planning on giving my hands a good conditioning, then will clip and file and paint the nails. Grooming 101 at my household. Miles may come home and wonder if he's got the right house! Speaking of which, I read an article recently which provides some sound advice on looking good - especially if your starting to 'move on' in years. There are always some basic things you can do to keep yourself looking younger. You don't HAVE to start melting into grey hair, buns and polyester - well, polyester has changed A LOT since our mother's days, I admit...

Looking Good

Here are some of the grooming ideas I learned:

  1. Shape your brows - its like getting a mini facelift, it completely changes your face!
  2. Use color to structure your face. Remember, light shades highlight or brings attention to features and dark shades play them down.
  3. Don't use too dark of a foundation - test it on your neck first, so you don't appear to be wearing a mask.
  4. Use eyeliner - it really brings out your eyes. Apply only a thin line right on the edge of your upper eyelid. If you put it on too thick, 'erase' the extra using a q-tip moistened with makeup remover. If your over 50, try to stay away from black - choose dark brown or grey.
  5. After 50, consider lining your lips a little bit. Key word, a little bit. Make sure your lip pencil is good and sharp, and use a slightly darker shade than your lipstick.
  6. Always wear mascara.
  7. Don't be afraid to play. Why not ask your cosmetician at a local drugstore to 'experiment' on you - hey, it washes off!

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

I had to come and make a second post this morning, to share this link with you. It's NASA's view of the fires which are creeping closer and closer to us! Our community is located right to the left of the words British Columbia, right on the Canada/US border. We are threatened by the Tripod fire, while off to our left, the Tatoosh fire is creeping into Manning Park - a provincial treasure which is full of raw fuel in the form of beetle killed pine. Please pray our firefighters get the fires under control.

(you can also zoom in for a closer look!)

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