found out i had broken a root on a tooth that already had a crown and root canal.
had a tooth pulled. excavated really.
meanwhile, crashed our main computer. was without one for nearly a week.
my personal tech support got the old one up and running for internet at least.
in a moment of madness (knowing the hard drive was full) i downloaded a 4 gig memory card.
crashed that computer. it is apparently nonretrievable. and i had not fully backed up the hard drive. so i lost photos from aug 07 to dec 07. yes, 4 months of lavender's first year. poppy's 3rd birthday and nigel's school start.
fell into deep depression. rich tried to tell me at least we didn't lose the kids for those four months.
i was too sad to be amused.
finally bought a new computer. nearly 3 weeks after all this madness began.
got it home to set it up.
it was used.
took it back.
they said try it.
so we are. until black friday.
sorry to have not been around.
i haven't been very pleasant.
you are glad i went into hiding.
but what's done is done, and life must go on.
so here we are.
and i made my first layout in nearly a month.
hooray for me??!!
it uses a new Crystal template. you may purchase it at www.jessicasprague.com. i might stick to templates until my creativity outweighs my frustration.
one bit of sunshine? with no computer, one gets their house very clean!!
when we first arrived here, lunch with dad was often. first, he was nearby. second, it was summer and there was no schedule.
then lavender came. still we could go, as we ladies were pretty free.
then he switched offices and poppy started preschool. visits became extra special school off events.
and then summer came but we still had too much scheduled. so we didn't make it much.
now school is back in session but we snuck over for one last hurrah on the friday before the long weekend. (and, no, i have no idea why our school district needed a teacher prep day one week into school...)
So you know I am having more than just a little crush on Crystal Wilkerson lately. Well, I have had the pleasure of a sneak peek at Crystal's new templates. She is working on a new template series which will turn some of her favorite paper scrapbookers' paper pages into digital layouts. How fun is that?
Here are the first two templates:
You can buy them at JessicaSprague.com. And you should. They are on sale for $1 for the first 3 days (or if you are tardy, they will just be $2.99 each). The first designer in the series is the amazingly talented Susan Weinroth
I was hoping to tell you that these were total time savers for me, but honestly, they were my first templates, ever. So there was a bit of a learning curve. But by the third one, I was cruising, though. Much better. And I DO love having a "sketch" for a multi-photo layout. [Being that I am completely impaired when it comes to making them. It is 100 times faster for me to make 3 single photo layouts than to put 3 photos on one page. Sad, huh? But now, with Crystal's help, I am going to be a multi-photo layout machine! Just watch us (me n' my pal, crystal (teehee!)) go!]
You knew my rebellious ways were going to rear their ugly head, didn't you?? Might I just admit freely and happily how much I love/adore/dig altering the color of digital elements. I consider it a total challenge to play with the color balance, saturation, and curves until I get the perfect color. It suits my neurotic color loving ways so well!
My sweet friend Angie and her family have welcomed a new baby! Little Keira. She is a yummy little thing. And today is our day to celebrate them both, mom and baby. I am supposed to offer advice but this scares me some. So instead, I might just offer up some of our favorites.
For diaper rash we love diaprotex. It's by Blistex and comes in single servings. Can't find it online. Sorry.
For eczema or just dry skin, try Vanicream. You can buy it at Target, but have to ask for it at the Pharmacy counter. Use it daily and Keira's skin will be yummy forever. (We still use it daily on our littles.)
For carseats, we love Britax. Super safe, and sits tall so Keira will be able to see out of the window. (Not quite yet, but soon...) Makes car riding much more fun!
For rocking, we like to listen to The Twin Sisters' Lullabies. They have the sounds of oceans and birds in the background. Mmm.
Angie, you have waited so long for this time. I know you will enjoy it. Continue to listen to your heart and stay close to God. There is no substitute for the Spirit when it comes to making decisions. As you already know. I am just so very happy for you. So very very happy for you.
Now, go get a minute of sleep before she wakes up again!
regret is somewhat inevitable. i try to live so that i have little regret.
sometimes, though, you look back and wonder if you might have been wrong.
or perhaps not wrong, but not the wisest.
at this point, Nigel got himself dressed and ready for school. he made his own lunch. got himself to the busstop. we spoke of grown up things and made weighty decisions. it seemed okay at the time. now he seems like such a little boy. i hope Heavenly Father helped Nigel through this time, same as He did me. i'm sorry he had to grow up faster than he should have had to. he was so little...
first, thank you for your kindness yesterday. it was a lovely day all told.
september has been a blur. switching dance studios was way more stress than it should have been. starting gymnastics for lavender means an extra hour of driving. and football. well, it is wonderful but i have a new and profound respect for sports parents. whew!
school is in full swing. hopefully this is the month we will finally find our rhythm. i cancelled our travel plans for the month and am looking forward to the ebb and flow of daily living to finally set in.
a new month also means a new gallery. it is a good one. we have the greatest team. they work very hard and are endlessly creative. i rarely can pick a favorite as i can find such art in every single one.
here is my contribution this month. i know, i know, just one. i made 12 other layouts this week for S&CT so i was a bit out of steam. but i do love this one! little poppy. there are so many things i wish i could remember. it is so hard to keep up on journaling and scrapbooking when they are small. i try to remember that getting dressed was somedays a mission accomplished. and not to berate myself for not getting it all down. life just happens.
and on that depressing note... sorry. i really just meant to say i love this little munchkin. loved her then. love her still.
One year ago, my sweet friend Megan had a baby. Everything went well through her pregnancy. The doctor gave her five or six ultrasounds, but always said things were fine. I remember going to gymnastics and driving home when I got a phone call that the baby was here but that something was wrong.
It was one of those moments I can recall in every visceral detail. I remember how my hands shook on the steering wheel. How my gut wrenched in pain. How all the little stuff immediately became irrelevant.
At the hospital that night, my friend Michelle and I sat with Megan. No one knowing what to say. The shock evident, palpable. I remember worrying about the most trivial things. Do we take a gift for the baby? Do we not? Do we ask questions? Do we not? As I tried to think what Megan would like, and not what I would need if I were the mama, I felt so helpless. In all our time together, things had been good. I didn't know her mourning language. I didn't know if she would prefer to talk or not. To have people there or not. So we went and sat and tried to let her lead.
I tell you these things as I wished I had had a manual. I wish I had known how to help more. I am a bit of a doer in times of crisis. But there was really nothing to do. But sit and wait. And pray.
And pray we did. Selfishly that Ella would be okay. Then trying to be less controlling, we asked that God's will be done. But what God would want to take a baby away from her mother? Though you know that His will isn't to create pain and anguish, thinking of it that way seemed cold. So rather we just started to pray for peace. For Ella. For her family. For our own children who were about to face something that we hoped they never would.
Those prayers led to nearly four months. And while it seems so short, when you are trying to fit a lifetime into each day, four months can be wonderful. It is time enough to have your heart softened. It is time enough to sear images and memories onto your heart forever. It is time enough to see a family torn apart by fear and trauma begin the healing process. It is time enough for family to come say hello and have a turn holding a 5 pound piece of heaven. It is time enough to create a lifetime of incentive to live well and hold to the rod. It is time enough to remind us that we all have a purpose here on earth. And that some of God's finest don't need more than four months to complete their lifetime of service.
Today is Ella's first birthday. Poppy asked how it is Ella's birthday when she is no longer with us. It gave us one more opportunity to remember her, and talk about God's plan. Which is why we will celebrate Ella forever. For she provided an opportunity to remember and talk about God's plan.
Happy birthday sweet baby Ella. We are glad your heart is no longer broken. We are grateful that you have returned to your heavenly home. Our selfish desire to have you here with us still is tempered by our understanding that you are now whole, radiant, and no longer struggling.
I am totally happy to report that I was asked to be the guest blogger on Scrapbook & Cards Today. A phenomenal magazine run by the most amazing woman, Catherine Tachdjian. A love affair was inevitable as Catherine is a fellow Canadian and chocolate lover. But I also love her concept, and how she executes it so effortlessly. (Though I can only imagine how much time/effort/blo0dsweat&tears she actually spends and expends.)
When Catherine asked if I would guest blog, I not only said YAHOO! but also yes yes yes. You may find my first post on the Scrapbook & Cards Today blog, but don't forget to click over to their new site, too. It just launched Friday and it is both absolute eyecandy and extremely user friendly. Think of it as you most favorite pair of shoes becoming even more comfortable to wear. Perfect!
I hope you had a great weekend. We were busy with a date night, a football game, a women's conference, talent show, and dinner, and hosted a dinner for 14 yesterday. Whew! Happily, we fell from 95 to 65 degrees. So my camera can come back out from hiding and once again get to work!!
making up for some lost time. fighting an onslaught of migraines this week.
the sky is clear and blue: can't blame the weather.
been sleeping: can't blame the fatigue.
sometimes you just get what you get.
and, as pinkalicious says, you don't get upset.
back to the catalogue. page 23. two-toned blue striped towel with green ends.
to keep the feeling of height, i switched my stripes to vertical. might try another with the horizontal stripe, though. like the effect of that one, too.
Today I went to the pool with the intentions of sketching out a minialbum I need to finish soon. But finding myself without a pen, I was left with just my stack of PB magazines to leaf through. I try to be exceptional in all ways, even the bad ones, and coveting is well within my skill set. PB is my go-to source for things to covet. I am also exceptionally gifted at imagining others' lives to be perfect, and these rooms set a visually stunning backdrop for my set of unknown characters to live out their perfect lives (with their perfect linens, perfect furniture, and perfect decor).
(I'll spare you the full description of the horror that sets in whenever I visit a pottery barn outlet--though briefly, it's like learning your perfect cupcake has crummy frosting and is dry to the taste. Dreams, shattered. (If PB isn't perfect, than what hope do I have???))
So pen-less and magazine-full I opened my PBKids and decided to take a new approach. I thought perhaps I would look and see what layout I could make from what was before me. Not only would it make me more productive, I was hoping it would keep me from my covetous dream fugue. (And it worked!, I am happy to report!)
Here is the first. Using the late summer 2010 edition, pages 88 & 89 as my color palette, I am happy to have finished my first layout of the week! Woohoo!
I apologize for the panties shot. My sweet little has little regard for social mores when it impedes her gymnastic-ing!
Are you with me? Want to spend your week designing out of a catalogue? Sounds fun, no?
i get to wondering what we would be like if we were raised in a vacuum. not the sucking kind, but unaffected by our environment. for instance, lavender is so quick to adopt poppy's gestures and tone, that i wonder what she might sound like/act like if she were an only. but one quick glance at this photo and i am reminded that the love received and given by siblings far outweighs any other impact. it's truly irreplaceable.