Thursday, December 1, 2011

December Daily: Day One

I have been so excited for December Daily this year. December Daily is my way of getting in the holiday spirit, of getting ready for Christmas, of being enthusiastic and excited for the season.

I really like this post that Noell Hyman at Paperclipping wrote about tailoring December Daily to your style. I go through a similar dilemma to what she describes, and this year I was inspired to just go for it by the fact that it's E's first Christmas and I would love to have that documented somehow. I like the mix of the everyday with the Christmas, so that's not a problem for me, but last year I didn't love all of my foundation pages after they were filled in with pictures and journaling. So, this year, I am using Ali's template, but filling in with paper and embellishments as the day unfolds rather than ahead of time.

I also loved Ali's post today of encouragement - it all counts! It doesn't matter if you don't have a picture for every day. If you want to "break the rules", you can! This is your project, make it great, but don't make it stressful. Love that. Oh, and point #9 was written just for me. ; )

Here is my journaling for December 1:
Today I dressed E in an outfit that I found at a consignment sale earlier this year - it has polka dots and a little penguin on it that says bundle of love. I just love it for the holiday season (and because it has dots and penguins, so perfect!) Tonight at dinner we gave her avocado for the first time, and I was so tempted to change her out of her cute clothes and put her in something else (anticipating a mess), but then decided what the heck, I'll just do a little extra scrubbing the next time I do laundry. I'm glad I did (hello, one little word embrace!) because this photo of her at the table with avocado all over her belly is the perfect beginning to December Daily. It just makes me happy to see that cute smiling face covered in drool, and it is a great picture to tell the story of how we are starting her out with solid foods using Baby Led Weaning - she eats with us, we give her foods that we are also eating, and she is learning how to eat them on her own at her pace. It has made mealtimes so much fun!

One Little Word blog hop for December!

Xnomads' Blog

My word: embrace

I have sort of been keeping up with my One Little Word album, but I definitely haven't been doing a good job of updating my blog. I am embracing that fact and reminding myself that I have been spending a lot of quality time with my baby instead! : )

Speaking of the baby, I was hoping to get my page scanned and uploaded before the hop went live, but she kept me up all night last night, so that didn't happen. I hope to be able to update before the day is over. I can say that I printed the brown lettering set on Bazzill's Coconut Cream paper (this is becoming my favorite off-white cardstock) and wrote in the journaling with a brown pen.

If I'm cute and smiley all day, does that make up for the fact that I'm a crankypants all night long?

Here is my journaling:
I believe that my new job is a good fit for me.
I know that E is well adjusted and thriving despite all the changes we have subjected her to, with moving and being between two different states.
I love E more and more each day. Her smile, her growth, and her discovery are so amazing to witness.
I learned that motherhood was not an easy transition for me.
I am enjoying reading again, having felt uninspired when we first got to Indiana. I am loving taking E to the library (and she seems to love it too!)
This word has helped me relax, be at peace, and accept where I am right now. I feel like I stress about things a little less and am enjoying things a little more.

Next up is Jan!

If you want to start at the beginning, go to Margie's blog.

And here's the entire list:

Julie Ann
Monica B
--> You are Here <--

Monday, November 28, 2011

Getting back on the blogging bandwagon

I have fallen out of the habit of updating my blog thanks to a certain (cute) little someone, but December Daily is coming up, so I thought I would get back in on the action. I also signed up to participate in the One Little Word blog hop for December 1st in order to force me to post something. So check back soon for some updates!

In the meantime, I leave you with this cuteness, taken the day the December Daily kit arrived from Studio Calico!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

burp cloths

We have a new addition in our house as of May 20. We didn't get very many burp cloths at our shower and I am finding that we use them quite regularly. So I bought some prefold diapers, pulled out some favorite fabrics, and, with the help of my mother-in-law, made some. I am so happy with how they turned out and they are already getting good use!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Three projects for 2011

I have had this post saved since January. It has taken me this long to pull together the photos. Sad, very, very sad. But I think getting my dissertation done is a good excuse!!

Finishing three quilting projects this past year has demonstrated to me that three is a reasonable amount of output to expect from me in a year quilting-wise. So I am putting my mind to finishing three more projects this year:

1) Penguin baby quilt. I picked out the pattern last fall when I found out I was pregnant. The main penguin fabric I bought years ago, probably before I started graduate school, so it is great to finally put it to use! This has a deadline of May 23, 2011 : )
I have started cutting the pieces but no assembly has happened yet.

2) Log cabin quilt for my husband. I started this quilt when we were living in Mexico in 2002-3. It is pretty far along, but I keep debating what the finished size should be and whether or not I need to make more blocks. I will make a firm decision on that this year, and get it done! Seeing as this year marks 15 years together, I think he should get a quilt, especially if the baby is getting one : ) [Forgot to take photos - I'll make a separate post once I pull everything out to work on it.]

3) This is a first for me, as I plan to START and FINISH this quilt in 2011! Whoa, getting a little bold here : ) This will be my first "kit" quilt - I bought the fabric as a bundle and the pattern from the same booth at the Houston quilt show this past fall. I think the colors are gorgeous and I have wanted to do a fat quarter quilt for a long time, so here goes!

Bonus) In pulling out the fabrics to take a picture of #3, I also found the pattern and fabric for a fourth project that I have been inspired to do. This project is actually speaking to me more right now than #3 is, so I thought I would add it as a bonus project. Who knows, maybe I'll start and finish two quilts this year for a total of 4 finished projects! (A girl can dream, right?)

Friday, April 1, 2011

One Little Word Blog Hop for April

I got a lot done on my One Little Word project this month!
Xnomads' Blog

I added the "beginnings" frame to my January 5x7 photo and got it printed. It looks great in my album!

I fixed my January layout - I wasn't happy with how I had originally made my card with "embrace" on it. But now I think it's just right!

I got my February photos printed and added captions to them so that I would remember why I took them:

You can click on any of the images to see them larger.

And I made my March layout!! Our task this month was to choose an action related to our word and do it. My action was to submit a COMPLETE draft of my dissertation to my committee by March 20. I came close - I did send something to my chair on March 20, but it wasn't complete. I sent her a complete draft a week later - hey, it's before the end of the month, right?

I never put butterflies on anything (it's a scrapbook trend I have generally avoided), but I decided to go for it this time since they kind of represent change. And part of my goal with choosing "embrace" was to try new things in my creative process. So the butterflies represent the change that comes with finishing a dissertation and the flowers represent the growth that I have undergone in this whole process.

Also, I didn't go into this with a fixed color palette in mind, but it looks like turquoise, orange, and brown are emerging as themes.

Next up, Cheri A! Make sure you scroll down and check out how she decluttered her scrap space -- it looks AMAZING! And definitely check out Margie's blog to thank her for organizing such a great blog hop!

Here's the complete list of participants in case you want to hop around:
1. Margie
2. Amanda
3. Donna
4. Joy
5. Jan
6. Jamie
7. Nikki
8. Monica B2
9. Cindy
10. Stacey
11. Katrina
12. Rebekah
13. Monica
14. Chrissy
15. Jill
16. Lisa
17. Kathryn
18. Jennifer
19. Jen
20. Sam
21. Miranda
22. Lynn
23. Cynthia --- you are here
24. Cheri A --- go here next
25. Deb
26. Nicky
27. Karen D
28. Tina
29. Kimberly
30. Abbey
31. Julie Ann
32. Lisa A

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Some "digital" scrapbooking

I have had three scrapbooking tasks on my to do list for a while now. As of today, I can check them off (plus two bonus ones)! Yes, I am totally procrastinating finishing my dissertation. I keep telling myself this is how I work best.

1) Make a 6x6 layout of pictures from my in-laws' Solstice party to put into my December Daily album. This is the very last page I have to do before the album is complete. DONE!

2) Make the 5x7 Beginnings layout for my One Little Word album. DONE!

3) Make a 6x12 layout so that I can print another 6x12 layout I made a year and a half ago. Put the two together to print as one 12x12. DONE!

4) Make the 8x10 February photo collage for my One Little Word album. DONE!

5) Place all of these as a single order at DONE! (And even managed to get it in before their sale expired!)

Penguin quilt

I mentioned in an earlier post that I am planning to take on three quilting projects this year. Here is a preview of the first one -- a penguin quilt for the baby.

The pattern I am using, Penguin Party from the book Confetti in the Corner:

Fabrics for the front:

Fabrics for the back:

So far I have started cutting the fabrics. No assembly yet.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Organizing Paper Clutter

I have a lot of paper. Scrapbook paper, paper associated with my dissertation and research, paper reminders, paper mail, unidentifiable paper stacks, you get the idea.

Over the past two years, I have been trying to get this paper under control with many many thanks to Aby Garvey at Simplify 101. Aby offers an online course on how to organize your paper clutter (the next session starts today!) and it has been a huge help to me to figure out why I have such a problem with paper and what I can do about it. This is the best (short) summary of what you learn in the class. I am enrolled in this latest session, my third time through it, because each time I take it I get further and further through my backlog. We will be moving some time this year, and I don't want to move all this paper, so I am taking it this time with the hopes of significantly reducing the volume of paper I have. Wish me luck!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

One Little Word Blog Hop for March

Xnomads' Blog
Hard to believe it is March already! I am participating in the One Little Word Blog Hop again this month and wanted to thank Margie for getting me in to the list at the very last minute! I emailed her at midnight last night and she worked some magic and got me into the rotation. That makes me last on the list, so click over to Margie's blog when you are done here to go full circle (or start the hop from the beginning). A big thank you to Cindy also for linking me in to the hop so that I could participate.

My word for the year is embrace, and our February prompt from Ali Edwards was to take pictures of things that remind us of our word. I took two photo walks (something I never do!) to scout out possible inspiration and found myself drawn to circles (encircle is a synonym of embrace).

From my photo walk in Vail, CO: Wind mobiles

From my photo walk in Charleston, SC: a logo for a weekend festival. I liked that it had the year along with the circles.

Some other photos from my Charleston walk can be found here. My favorite photo is by far the one of the older couple on the boardwalk.

I also found my word in my internet surfing and took screenshots - that counts as a picture, right? : ) These shots come from a blog post which can be found here. The first one is from the text of the post and the second is from the comments.

This month I also made the cover for my album:

And took a class on Embracing Imperfection at Big Picture Classes - how perfect of a title! I took this screenshot from the handout as a reminder to myself to embrace my imperfections : ) I took the advice to heart and made 3 scrapbook layouts this month!

I am trying hard to be mindful of my word in my daily life. I find that it is making me calmer and that I am having an easier time of handling things as they come. That's a good thing!

Here is the complete list of bloggers participating in the Hop:
1. Margie
2. Monica B
3. Jill
4. Miranda
5. Donna
6. Lynn
7. Stacey
8. Lisa
9. Cassie
10. Abbey
11. Nicky
12. Holly
13. Karen
14. Claudia
15. Rebekah
16. Kimberly
17. Kat
18. Kristina
19. Jan
20. Nikki
21. Amanda
22. Lisa
23. Sam
24. Maureen
25. Kristi
26. Tere
27. Karen
28. Katrina
29. Monica Bergler
30. Mandy
31. Lisa
32. Chrissy
33. Lee
34. Jen
35. Sylvia
36. Christianne
37. Cheri
38. Joy
39. Beth
40. Jennifer L
41. Kathryn
42. Heather
43. Cindy
44. Cynthia

Friday, February 18, 2011

One Little Word in photos

Our task for my One Little Word Class this month is to take pictures of things in the world that make us think of our word. Here is what I came across today.

Embrace the Basics

Embrace each other

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Two new layouts

Two new layouts this week! (Actually 3, but I decided not to post the third for privacy reasons.) I am feeling uber-productive!

#1) LSA annual meeting
I was inspired by this episode of the Paperclipping Roundtable to create a layout about my work. This layout is about the linguistics conference that I attend every year and some of the highlights from this year's conference.

I have had the lined patterned paper for a while, along with cardstock in coordinating colors, but was waiting for the "perfect" topic and finally decided this was it!

#2) Having fun with paper

I was sifting through the pile that is growing on my workspace and came across some stickers that I saved from a kit I received from Studio Calico. I decided it was now or never -- use them in a layout somehow or throw them out. I made this about how I am inspired by Studio Calico kits, saving 2 stickers to use on it and tossing the other 2. I used this sketch (also from Studio Calico) and entered it in their Sunday Sketch Challenge! Fingers crossed for a giftcard :)

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

One Little Word blog hop

Welcome to the One Little Word Blog Hop!

My word for the year is embrace.

I want to be better about embracing the projects I undertake and getting them done without too much agonizing and perfectionism, so I decided to participate in this blog hop to give myself a deadline for the January assignment from Ali's class. I don't totally love the final result - the mix of papers isn't quite right - but I am EMBRACING it as is. Maybe I will change them up, maybe not, for now I am calling it good enough.

Our assignment this month was to look up the definition of your word, its synonyms, a quote that included your word, and to explain why you chose it. The linguist in me loved this task! Here is what I did:

I think the quote is my favorite part: "It takes a lot of courage to release the familiar and seemingly secure, to embrace the new. But there is no real security in what is no longer meaningful. There is more security in the adventurous and exciting, for in movement there is life, and in change there is power."
-- Alan Cohen

The participants in the blog hop are all in the class. Next up: Kathryn!
Here is the entire list if you want to see who else is participating:
1) Margie
2) Jill Conyers
3) Monica
4) Lynn W
5) Miranda
6) Mandy
7) Kathy
8) Lisa
9) Donna
10) Abbey
11) Sam
12) April
13) Nicky
14) Rebekah
15) Relly
16) Nancy
17) Cynthia
18) Kathryn
19) Nikki
20) Heather
21) Gayle
22) Kristina
23) Debra
24) Becky
25) Amy
26) Marlene
27) Maureen
28) Cheri
29) Monica Scrapmom
30) Jan
31) Junelle
32) Margaret
33) Sharyn
34) Tere

Thursday, January 20, 2011

One Little Word, once a month

Since I am participating in Ali Edwards' One Little Word project again this year, and am committed enough to be signed up for the class at Big Picture Classes, I figured I might as well devote at least one blog post a month to my one little word.

Here is the title page I made for my class album:

I have been thinking a lot about how I want to put my word into action this year, but I will save that for another post : ) January's not over yet!

Monday, January 17, 2011

Etsy Taste Test

Have you tried etsy taste test?

Basically you click on several images that appeal to you for some reason or another, and then it returns pages of items for sale on etsy that supposedly match your taste.

Here was my first attempt:

and my second attempt:

Even though I clicked on completely different images each time, there seems to be some overlap. Interesting....

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

three, yes THREE, quilts finished in 2010

I wanted to post a summary of the three (!!) quilts I finished this year, since I am so so happy to have completed projects.

Exhibit 1: Girls of the World for my cousin Emily

I actually finished this top last, but thanks to the speedy quilting of That Quilter and binding by my friend nanann, it was completely done first! I mailed it off to the lucky recipient and heard that she wrapped her cute 6-year old self up in it on Christmas morning and explained to her grandmother that "C made it for ME!" (And for the record, my sister helped on the design and piecing of the top, so she needs recognition too!)
Also blogged about it here.

Exhibit 2: Sister's Choice, a wedding quilt for my sister

This one was quilted by a friend of my mother-in-law's in Montana. My mother-in-law sewed the binding on (she is in the picture on the left).
Here is a close-up of some of the quilting:

Original blog post here.

Exhibit 3: Troikas, a Russian quilt for me!

This was also quilted by my mother-in-law's friend. There is so much detail in the quilting -- I just love how it turned out, and it is currently on my bed!! (Troika is the Russian word for the sleigh depicted in the focal squares). My mother-in-law did the binding on this one as well. Here is the back:

Original blog post here.

I am now motivated to finish three projects in 2011 -- more on those soon!

Monday, January 3, 2011

One Little Word

Well, you may have noticed a new banner in the side bar. Yes, it is another Ali Edwards' project, no surprise there! I am choosing one little word to focus on throughout this year. I did this last year and found that it really helped me to stay on track with my goals for the year.

Last year's word was finished. I chose it because I wanted to be finished with my dissertation and finished with a number of unfinished projects. It hadn't been enough to resolve to finish these projects in the past, so I chose the past tense version of the word to hopefully visualize them actually done rather than the process of getting them done. And there are so many things that I FINISHED!
* three chapters of my dissertation
* three quilts!
* two papers for publication, one is submitted and one is being reviewed by my advisor
* my Teaching with Technology certificate through UT's Graduate Student Instructor program
* Week in the Life
* all of the foundation pages, pictures, and journaling for December Daily (I haven't finished assembling it yet, but I have all of the pieces that I need)

This year's word is embrace. There are so many changes coming up this year that I know are good for me and for my life path. I want to embrace these changes, feeling at peace with my decisions rather than wondering the perpetual “what if?” that I have plagued myself with in the past. We shall see where this word takes me this year.