Sunday, December 27, 2009

Like start that resolution list.....

Thursday, December 24, 2009


Saturday, December 19, 2009

Friday, December 18, 2009

Our Tree - Fa La La La La

Merry Christmas 2009

The Christmas card I sent out this year.
(all digital & easy) (Gosh, I've got a good looking family)

Monday, December 14, 2009

For most, a winter white wonderland is a normal experience --- In the Northwest, not so much (although it seems to becoming a normal experience). We've had our first SNOW with about an inch of the fluffy white stuff and another 6" heading our way. Living at the top of a ski slope driveway has it's advantages: privacy, quiet and only woodland sounds. And it's disadvantages: a dusting of snow creates a ski slope with twists and turns for the expert navigator, and we're home waiting for warmer temperatures, 3:00 o'clock sunshine to melt that nasty stuff and a Christmas wish that it only falls on Christmas night and disappears overnight.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

A Bah Humbug!

Tis the season and it takes ALL kinds of people to spoil the season.....we had some Christmas gift orders stolen from our little red barn. We live at the end of a road - surrounded by a couple thousand acres of woods - up a steep hill - and have a little red barn near the road, for our deliveries to be left. Should be safe, right? Guess not --- a couple of delivered gifts were stolen right out from under us. Bah Humbug!!!! I sure hope the thieves like their Christmas gifts this year. What creeps!!!!!!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Tis the season......

It's only 2 weeks until the fun begins. It's not like it hasn't been fun so far, I think the anticipation of what's to come, building up to the Big Day is lots of fun. Checking those lists, searching and searching for those perfect gifts. Marking the calendar with special reminders of things to do: outside lights go up, Christmas cards to make and send out, wrapping paper and tape to buy, waiting for the "Christmas truck" (UPS) to bring the online purchases, creating some unique wrappings, chatting with strangers in the post office line, make Christmas cookies and Krumkakas, when it's OK to play Christmas songs (24/7 according to my hubby - his singing is getting better, can't say much for the little dance that goes with each song), get tree, trim tree, plan and shop for the Christmas Eve dinner and morning breakfast, marking the date that Andrea will drive up the driveway, and not to forget the December birthdays.

The calendar is full of reminders, events and notices of what to do today. It's a busy time, a thoughtful time and a time to be a kid again for a whole month. It's only 2 weeks until the fun begins.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Where My Journals Hang Out

This is where my journals are hanging out these days --- my Allied Arts Festival Faire booth. The faire is going swell! The venue this year is fantastic and we're getting lots of shoppers (up from last year's count -thank you Canadians). Sales are going great and we're not half way through the event. The weekends are packed with festive shoppers who also enjoy spirited holiday live music and Santa is scheduled to arrive before to long. Fa-la-la-la-la........

Tuesday, December 1, 2009


I was asked by Becky Fleck at to create a scrapbook layout for her December web site using the sketch below. (The site gets thousands of hits on the first few days of the month when Becky shows her monthly sketches and it may take a long time to upload the site.) My assignment was to take the sketch and make it my own. This is a sketch I was comfortable with since I've done many similar layouts before. Telling my story with a group of pictures running across the page and a journaling spot to tell my tale. However, I hadn't created one just about my daughter. When I found this poem, I felt it was written just for us and I knew this layout had to be done . What better way to celebrate my daughter then with a layout that will be viewed by thousands around the world. (to see the layout up close and personal, just click on the photo.)

the original sketch sample:

The Poem:
You can see it in their eyes,
in tender hugs and long good-byes,
a love that only moms and daughters know.

You can see it in their smiles,
through passing years and changing styles,
a friendship that continually seems to grow.

You can see it in their lives,
the joy each one of them derives,
in just knowing that the other one is there...

To care and to understand,
lend an ear or hold a hand,
and to celebrate the memories they share.

Anonymously, love Mom

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

A Forever Thankful!

I like to take a moment this time of the year and think of someone who I'm very thankful for and send them a card or a message letting them know that they are appreciated. This year I sent my good friend Claydene this card. She has taken me by the hand and off this little mountain side, many times. We've gone out to lunch, she's taken me on some house tours (like the one of 15 $1,000,000+ houses on Chuckanut Drive --- WoW! that was fun!), bought my journals when I thought they were just going to collect dust, thought of me when she finds something fun to do; like the recent journaling class I'm in. She found us our new home in B'ham and became an instant friend. A very caring, thoughtful, heartfelt person that I'm honored to call my friend.
Thanks, Claydene for being my friend. Love & hugs, Sam

Monday, November 23, 2009

Ah, isn't life grand!

What have I been up to, you ask? Well, it sure hasn't been playing/writing/creating anything for my blog --- guess I need a blog muse or an Amusing tale to tell. I have been creating journals and mini photo albums. Taking a little 100 page composition book and turning it into a journal with an attitude. (200 made to date). Taking 5 little 2.5"x3.5" badge holders and creating a mini photo album. (70 made to date - and on WalMart's speed dial when they get more in stock - LOL). I have just been having fun! My little sale booth is all set-up in the middle of over 100 other artist's booths just waiting to capture someones eye and be taken home (see ad on the right). Pictures are coming and updates along the way. This is new for me -- so it will be new for you, too. So, what have you been up to?

Thursday, November 12, 2009

a Sneak Preview

Here's just a little taste of what's in the store for you when you come to my booth at Allied Arts. MINI ALBUMS. These cute little albums can be filled with 9 of your favorite 2.5x3.5 photos. They're great for your purse to pull out for a bit of braggin'. And wonderful for the student to put their classmates' school photos in and hang from their backpack. What a cool stocking stuffer. Only $5.00 at the Holiday Festival of the Arts.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Another thought.....

One knew nothing. One lived and walked about on the earth or rode through the forests, and so many things looked at one with such challenge and promise, rousing such longing: an evening star, a bluebell, a lake green with reeds, the eye of a human being or of a cow, and at times it seemed as if the very next moment something never seen but long yearned for must happen, as if a veil must drop from everything.

- Hermann Hesse, Narcissus and Goldmund
(photograph by: Scott Mansfield)

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Monday, November 2, 2009

Think Global

My little Etsy shop has gone global - they're taking my journals for a little spin. Last month I sent a few to Ireland - This month a few are traveling to Saudi Arabia. I may never see these countries, but my journals have new homes over the pond with instructions to send me a post card now and then to see how they're getting along. I know, I'm bragging --- it's so much fun!

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Lights, Camera - Pass the PopCorn!

A simple movie review: Away We Go
Buoyed by the news that they are expecting their first baby, Burt (John Krasinski - using all his wonderful facial expressions from the "Office") and Verona (Maya Rudolph of SNL fame) embark on a journey to locate the perfect place on the planet to raise their child. But, their quest inevitably yields many unexpected surprises. Sam Mendes directs this quirky comedy while Allison Janney, Catherin O'Hara, Josh Hamilton, Jim Gaffigan, Maggie Gyllenhaal and Jeff Daniels co-star. So says the synopsis on the Netflix envelope.

The trailer didn't really look that great or interesting, but heck, I figure it was worth a spot on my Netflix list to view on a rainy Saturday night at the movies. It was a very good movie, reminded me of Little Miss Sunshine -- the way it moved through the story, giving you the view of what Burt and Verona are seeing, feeling and dealing with to find home. So, pass the
popcorn, and place it on your Netflix list --- A good, basic movie that won't disappoint you!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

For You, I Wish Your Freedom

For You, I Wish Your Freedom

by: Tricia LaVoice

Outside your window a river flows freely home, a butterfly waltzes with the breeze.
Blind to this beauty you are frozen tight in a cocoon of indignity unable to see anything but the past.
I walked your halls and felt the words of those who have hurt you. I searched your face for your smile and saw you believing in them. I walked your halls and felt you yelling out for help.
I listened for your laughter and heard your silence.
Outside your window a river is flowing home and a butterfly is waltzing with the breeze.
The water was once frozen, the butterfly once held in a cocoon.
What if the snow cap refused the sun’s love never allowing itself to be set free? What if the caterpillar did not trust to see herself as anything but a caterpillar never allowing herself to become the butterfly she was meant to be?
I know you cannot forget your past but can you see your beauty?
Allow the love to melt away your hurt and set you free?
Allow the trust to release you from your cocoon so you can be who you were always meant to be?
For you, I wish your freedom.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Where Did The Time Go?

They say that the average human being has 10-20 memorable events that take place a day. Combine that over an extended period of time and that is a lot of events!

It's been a fun month with lots of changes (read: Bruce's surgeries, Andrea's surgery and 2 week stay in Bellingham, and Scott's visit - and that's only this month) and memorable events (like backing into Andrea's car jockeying around our tiny parking pad at the top of the driveway from he_ _ , a major printer melt-down and goats that think the grass IS greener on the other side of the fence). But, I'm back from playing Doctor Mom and exploring the mountains with Scooter.

I've filled my wee hours of the morning with creating my journals, cards and tiny photo albums for the upcoming Allied Arts Juried Faire that runs for 30 days. I'm not sure just how many of these crafty treasures I need to create (hoping our Canadian neighbors shop til they drop) --- so I'll just keep cutting and pasting until I run out of supplies. If you could see my studio you'd know that is just crazy talk - I've got tons of supplies just waiting to go somewhere. I've come up with some cool new designs and may have to post a few of my new journals in my Etsy shop. Have I mentioned that a couple of my journals now reside in Ireland? Guess now I can say that I'm an international journal creator. LOL
To be continued.............

Saturday, October 3, 2009

So you think you can dance?

How fun is that?
(thanks, Scooter for sharing!)

Wednesday, September 30, 2009


Now I need to listen to my Yo-Yo MA collection..........

Tuesday, September 29, 2009


So.......I make journals, I make journals to sell (see Etsy shop below), I've kept journals on road trips and love the written word. I would love to write - small problem - I'm not THAT creative. If I could write the Greatest American Mystery Novel, I'd be a happy, happy person. But, I don't think that's going to happen.

A good friend of mine talked me into taking a Journaling Class with 5 other woman lead by an instructor who knows what she's doing --- helping us start and keep a journal. Just for us, to find ourselves through writing, to explore our thoughts, dreams and ambitions through journaling. What a concept! I love this blog! To be able to write a few snippets here and there, letting my fingers whip around the keyboard, being clever with the words in my vocabulary - but to actually pick up a pen and write in my own handwriting - YIkEs! But, I'm adventurous and willing to dip my pen into journaling - after all I make journals for other people, I should at least journal for myself. At least..........

During our first class I had an epiphany "journals aren't JUST for documenting events and places I've been to or listing things to do --- they can be our alter self or our true self, one that will listen, not judge, be kind and keep me real with a little humor along the journey of writing (hey, journey=journal, I like that). What a concept! And if I don't get it right the first time, I've got hundreds of journals sitting around to grab and give it a go again and again and again.

I'll share a few of the multiple techniques we learn along the way - so maybe you too, will want to talk to yourself and discover (or rediscover) yourself through your own written word. A scary thought, but all it takes is picking up a pen (or pencil if you so choose) and just start.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Stay Tuned!

Life has gotten in the way of my Amusing World --- but, stay tuned, I'll be back!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Seattle Time

We spent the last few days in Seattle. Not for fun - but for a hospital visit for a few days. I could rant and rave about the hospital (they need some organizational skills put in place) but I won't.

Our hotel was only a couple of blocks from the institution with Freeway Park across the street and a wonderful way to walk up the hill to the hospital. The grounds are very well maintained and safe, the daily worker bees sweep the walkways and racked the grass. The landscaping features a variety of towering trees, even a few redwoods here and there. The walkways were designed to wander pass large garden structures, waterfalls and greenery. The peacefulness of the park was just what I needed and amazed me knowing that just under me was a roaring freeway traveling through the Big City of Seattle. Thanks Seattle, I needed that. However, it was heaven arriving home - no traffic jams, less people rushing around, and an oasis just north of this busy, busy city.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Just Trippin'

Playing with boxes, colors and the photos that are in my tiny stash.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Ah - Semi-ah-moo!

What more could I ask for: a perfectly sunny day, a light breeze coming off Boundary Bay at Semi-ah-moo for lunch. The Canadian mountains & the Peach Arch as our backdrop for a walk on the beach. P-E-R-F-E-C-T!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Along the Way

I had fun with these photos for a challenge on the J.S. site.
Love the colors, Love the photos, Loved the day!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Rock Hound

He's just Stone Crazy!

Friday, August 28, 2009

A Walk in the Park

A walk in the park for me, A run in the park for Andrea.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

The Fair

Iowa State Fair it's not --- but a fair non the less. This small NW fair had a little bit of everything and we roamed the barns petting the animals, road a few rides and ate your typical fair food. A good day to go to the fair.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Show and Tell

Today's assignment: Share With The Class
Keeping privacy in mind, in the comment area,
1. tell us who you are (no last names please)
2. where you're from (general location)
3. what brings you here
4. your favorite hobby
5. do you have a blog, web site or Etsy shop
we can visit and leave some luvin'?

Thursday, August 13, 2009

This one's for Scooter!

While cruising around town, listening to good tunes, enjoying our fine sunny weather, I looked over toward Mt. Baker and saw the morning cloud bank had slammed into the mountains. I ran home, got the camera to take some shots --- the huge cloud bank over Baker (it looked like Baker had blown it's top straight up and up and up) had moved on by the time I got to Lake Whatcom to take some photos these fantastic cloud scenes. The rest of the clouds were about half of their original size --- it's all about timing, being there at the right moment with camera in hand. The camera will now reside in the car. Bring it on!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

What If........

What if Photoshop were real...........
(found this floating around on some blogs and just had to bring it home.)

Monday, August 10, 2009

I Found Some!

While cleaning up some papers in the "stash" I found some shots of ALM when she modeled Persnickety Bags --- good for a LO or two. A Gal Around Town --- Neat, huh?

A Do Over .......

I wanted to try different LO with the train pictures --- I've got to get me mor' photos!

Friday, August 7, 2009


While we were playing at our waterfront park, I caught a train coming down the track and hit the continuous photo button for something fun (I think I freaked the engineer - he continuously tooted me).

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Run Andrea Run

A Runner was recently spotted in Bellingham's Boulevard Park.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

AND of course I had to scrapbook those photos & story!

Click on picture to get up close and personal.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Playing in the dirt

When we moved into our new home, DH took claim to the narrow piece of real estate at the edge of the house to create a Japanese garden, that was 4 years ago. He hummed and hawed - researched garden ideas - designed a small garden on paper - looked for local plants and stones that may work - received a Japanese lantern as a gift for "his" garden and then thought about it some more over the last 4 years. Last year, he got out his shovel and started to de-rock, de-weed, and prepared the ground for "The" garden. After working for a couple of months in 30 years of hard pack soil, collecting a ton of stones and rocks and getting 4 feet done - it stopped. This summer, he announced
"This just isn't going to work for a Japanese Garden, it's all yours".

I sketched out an idea for a simple garden,
working with local plants for color & size and a few stepping stones,
dug out the spots for said plants, weeded out the rest,
plotted the spot for the Japanese lantern
and 4 days later had a simple, appealing showcase at the edge of the house.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

July 29th -- A Day In History

Check Out That Number --- 100! In our little part of the world, summer temperatures are usually in the 70's with a few hot days hitting 80, maybe 85. We have no humidity and it always drops into the 60's at night. We don't have air conditioned houses and a few of us have fans that are stored in the far reaches of the closets - they never get used. If air conditioning in cars were an option and not the norm, we'd have non of that (going with the NW preference of a larger latte cup holder would be our choice). We don't have buggy summers - we don't have lightening bugs, either (that's sad) but no large swarms of pesty summer bugs. We always have a slight ocean breeze to enjoy. Yup, in our NW corner, west of the Cascades, the summer weather is perfect and we like it.

We've had an unusual summer this year (following an unusually heavy snowy winter). Summer started a month early - we actually had summer start in June and not July 5th. I can count on one hand the number of rainy days in the past 2 months. We're on lawn watering & car washing restrictions. We hang out at the grocery store, just to cool off. We're in a drought -- unheard of for the rainy NW.

We broke the record on July 29th, the temperature for Bellingham was 96 - the hottest day in record keeping history ----- at our record keeping station it hit 100 degrees. No breeze, No lattes (hold the coffee, give me the ice), and No air conditioning. (Bellingham ran out of fans last Monday.) It Was Hot! But, I hear it's going to cool off today --- it'll only get to 94 degrees.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

A thought for today.....

What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.
----Ralph Waldo Emerson

Monday, July 27, 2009

Take Note

I'm not sure where I got this little tidbit --- but, I had a dream last night........