Friday, December 14, 2007

Merry Christmas Andrea!

Hello to everyone out there in Andrea's blogosphere...

This is Shane, Andrea's Husband for the uninitiated, sneaking in this post. Yes, I hacked* my way into Annie blog... but I don't think she'll mind. The site redesign is part of my Christmas gift for her. She has said in the past she wants something that looks nicer than just one of the blogger templates but was not sure what to do with it. I commissioned a very talented friend of ours to create some characters for her to use in her crafts and I thought I could carry that into a redesign of her blog. The characters are actually a series of fun and stylized birds. On one of our many road trips with Frankie we got into a discussion of potential characters for her projects and we thought it would be fun to have a unifying factor but something that would allow for a lot variety. Eventually we all decided that the wonderful word of birds would be a great place to start. Rather them show them all to you here I'll let her reveal them to you over time in her pictures as she begins to create with them. If you want a sneak peek though, take a look at the owl in the side bar and the sparrow chillin' at the bottom of the page.

Anyway I hope you all like the site redesign. It's not much and I'm sure I'll make little tweaks here and there for a while, but it's something new.

I love you Andrea.

*I didn't actually HACK into her blog. I have her password as she has mine, but hacked just sounds cooler.

Friday, November 30, 2007


I know this is a little late but better late than never, right? Well, we had a great trip up to Hartland for Thanksgiving. A few close friends celebrated with us and it was very relaxing. Unfortunately, as soon as we returned the chaos of the season hit me. My 'to do' list tripled over night as I started realizing all the things I still have to do before Christmas. I don't know about you guys but I have the tendency to stay awake worrying about my list. In fact, I have learned to keep a notebook + pen on my bedside table so I can add to my list as I try to sleep. Last night I was awaken at 1:30am (loud neighbors) only to add another handful of items. I think that is how most of us are this time of year.

I am working on some fun homemade gifts and I hope to finish some soon. I will try to share more then.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

I'm Thankful For...

(Photo from Paper Source)

Shane - As cheesy as it sounds, I really do love him more and more. Some current favorite things are the way he makes Sydney laugh out loud and how much he encourages me in everything.

Sydney - The way she gives 'baby hugs' and 'big hugs,' the way she runs to the door to meet Shane, and the way she always needs to snuggle first thing in the morning.

Family - The familiar traditions like cranberry bread and long talks on the phone. I love that even after long periods we can pick right up where we left off.

Good friends - They are always there to encourage me, pray for/with me, and just share life with.

Health - This time last year we were having a little health scare and since then I feel so blessed to be healthy and have my family healthy too. (Well not counting the multitude of colds a two year old gets.)

"O Lord Almighty, blessed is the man that trusts in you" -Psalm 84:12

Monday, November 19, 2007

Gobble Gobble

Just a little pre-Thanksgiving cookies to warm you up. I made these on Saturday (with a little help from Sydney).

The plan was for a warm, burnt orange frosting but they kind of turned out a more like a coral. Of course, they have all been gobbled up already so they tasted fine. I start actual Thanksgiving prep today with peppermint bonbons and cranberry sauce. We are off to the cabin in Hartland on Wednesday. I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

Monday, November 12, 2007

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas

Shane was home all last week and with a little extra help around the house, I was able to get a little crafty. Here are some of the Christmas tags I made to go on all our gifts this year. I am thinking everything under the tree will be red, black, and silver. Stay tuned to see what really happens. Of course, Sydney wanted to get in on the action, so she started making her own Christmas cards to hand out. I think she liked the purple glue a little too much but I guess the cards have plenty of time to dry.

Birthday wishes come true

My wonderful husband has treated me to many lovely things this year for my birthday (officially tomorrow) but these are probably my favorite gift: fabrics from Anna Maria. He is so smart and knows me too well. Straight from my little wish list to my hands; it couldn't be any easier. Thanks sweetie.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Fall Finally

(Image from Keep Calm Ltd.)

It is finally starting to feel like fall here. I wore boots for the first time in too long, spent time explaining to Sydney why she needs to leave her socks on, and cooked comfort foods like Mom's cranberry bread. The weather is in the 60's and it has been overcast for two days. Now if I could just get a little rain (or a lot) I would be happy. For now I will settle for a cozy dinner with my family and a cup of tea.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Alvin and the Chipmunks

As many of you probably know, Shane has been working tirelessly on Alvin and the Chipmunks since earlier this summer. I am happy to report that after many long days (often more than 10 hour each) and long weeks (up to 13 working days before a single day off) he is finished!! Sydney and I are more than happy to have him home again for dinners and fun. Shane is as well (something about homemade food versus catering over and over and over again.) Luckily Shane has a week off for all of us to become reacquainted and for Shane to work a little more that little thing called school.

Sydney's 1st Disneyland trip

Even though we live a measly 45 minutes away from the self-proclaimed 'Happiest Place on Earth' we have never taken Sydney. Now that she is 2 and Shane is finally finished with Alvin and the Chipmunks we decided to take her yesterday. Let's just say that she loved it. And even without a nap all day, she was a doll. Here she is partaking in some of the time-honored traditions:

Her first ride

Lots of walking

Then catching a ride from Opa

Standing in line

Trying on silly hats

Meeting characters

Getting Minnie Ears with her name. This is right when we buckled her in the car...

and this is 5 minutes later!

Sleep well...

I hope all your Mondays were unexpectedly wonderful too.

Friday, October 19, 2007

My current wish list

There are always things I have my eye on but this being my favorite season, I always seem to find more. As I search the endless possibilities online for Christmas gifts for my loved ones I can't help but find things for me too. Does anybody else do that? Sydney is well (after having the croup) and Shane is almost done with his really crazy schedule so things are looking up around here and making me feel joyous. So here are a few of my current favorites.

1. Any of her fabrics. I have so many ideas in mind including a new cover for Syd's seat, some cute curtains in the kitchen, and of course a few clothes.

2. This book which I have been itching to read for a long time now. Plus, a little leisure reading with a new subscription to this and this.

3. Of course I love love love fall clothes and even though it doesn't get that cold in Southern California (is 40 even considered winter in most areas) I want want want something like this, and this, and this. Ok I will stop there. I think you get the idea.

4. Shane and I have been saving for something like this and this for our home. We are checking the clearance sales often. ;)

Of course, there are some more pressing purchase needs around here like this so we can start eating at our table again and replacing this but a girl can look, right?

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Swap surprises

I have wanted to do a swap for awhile but especially after seeing this. I finally joined the I [heart] Swap and look at what I received upon coming home from San Diego on Monday. What a magnificent treat. My package included lots of goodies including chapstick (how did she know it is my lip coverage of choice), beignet mix (how did she know Shane is cajun), and my favorite items - the map file folders and an adorable notebook from here. A special thanks to Dianna (I don't have you email or blog address to send a thanks to so this will have to do for now) and of course thank you Steph for hosting. Until next time....

Monday, October 15, 2007

Chargers Football

Football has never been my preferred sports pastime however Sydney and I joined my parents for a San Diego Chargers game yesterday. My dad refused to let us go to the game without being decked out in jerseys. Sydney was able to take her first trip on the trolley on our way to the stadium. I was sure she would love it because she is constantly yelling that she sees a red train but she was a little frightened at first. She loved the game and was swinging her Chargers towel all over the place screaming "Go Chargers." We had such a great time and the only thing that could have made it better was if Shane was with us and not working. Next time he will have to join us for all the football fun. Yes, there will be another time...I am officially a Chargers fan now.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Superhero Capes

A theme in our Sunday school curriculum is heros so I made all the kids capes. Sydney was my little model once again to help determine sizing. Then all the Kindergardeners and 1st graders worked their magic with the trusty puff paints.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

This week I was....

Still trying to learn to appliqué.

Visiting family in San Diego!

Watching the Air Races.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Animation Mentor

Shane received his log in information for Animation Mentor today. The first day of school is October 1st and we are both really excited. There is something about the beginning of a school year and the hopes for the future that just get me through all the potential stress and lack of family time. I am so proud of him for working hard AND committing to school. Right now I feel like such a lucky lady.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

This week I was....

Teaching myself to appliqué

Working on an embroidery gift

Going to swim lessons with Sydney

Watching The Office: Season Three with Shane

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Hot Hot Hot

We had a heatwave here in Southern California last week. Fortunately, we had already planned a trip to Hartland Camp with some friends. No television + no phones + cooler weather = good times. We played boardgames, went on walks, took naps, and ate tons of food. A special thanks to the Koops for the hospitality! When we finally returned home it was over 100 degrees
inside our apartment and we were even more thankful for the long weekend away.

Shane and Jeremy helping Sydney play basketball.

Sydney taking a break during a walk through the camp. She was sure she could do it all on her own but decided to let us help in the end.

I love moments like this with Shane and Sydney. Needless to say it was a much needed break from the grind of things. I hope you all stayed cool too.

Friday, September 7, 2007


Photographs that capture life are just amazing. More specifically, photos that show the essences of Sydney are the best. Shane captures many beautiful pictures and they just inspire me to learn more about photography and creative ways of displaying life. Maybe I will try to do a fun scrapbook-type display of them soon. These are just a couple to enjoy but I am sure there will be new ones occasionally. Enjoy!!

This one is from Andrew, a photographer who took Sydney's pictures for her birthday.