Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Dallas Blooms

So I mentioned on Friday that I was thinking about treating myself to a trip to the Dallas Arboretum for Dallas Blooms.  I woke up bright and early and jumped in the shower.  I wanted to go, but I was really on the fence due to the weather.  It was gloomy and chilly and probably not the best day for it.  The weather was supposed to improve a bit later in the day, but I really just wanted to get over there early.  I bundled up and headed out.

For those of you that are not familiar with the Dallas Arboretum or Dallas Blooms here is a little recap straight from the brochure that is given out.....

2014 marks the 30th anniversary of the Dallas Arboretum's major floral festival Dallas Blooms.  Dallas Blooms is the Southwest's largest floral festival with both local residents and out-of-town visitors who come to enjoy  the breath taking gardens.  Dallas Blooms features 500,000 spring-blooming bulbs including tulips, daffodils, Dutch Iris and hyacinths, in addition to 100,000 pansies, violas, poppies and thousands of other spring-blooming annuals and perennials. 

Although I did snap a few photos with my phone, I took over 80 pictures with the "big girl camera".  I still have a lot of learning to do, and some pictures look washed out to me, but as of yet I am not sure how to correct that, but I will keep at it!  Don't worry, I won't share them all, but here is a photo dump of some of my favorites.

And just to prove that I was actually there...

It was cold and windy, not to mention DSLR selfies are no joke...but I tried!  Hope you enjoyed all the pictures, but they really don't do the flowers justice.  If you are in the DFW area and have the chance to go you should definitely make an outing of it.  It is beautiful and definitely worth it!  Dallas Blooms runs through April 6th.

I am linking up with Crystal and Amanda for Texas Tuesday....

Next To Heaven

Friday, March 21, 2014

Disney Cruise Scrapbook: Part 3

Better late than never....I had much better luck early this morning!

Sadly, at least for me, this is the last of my Disney Cruise album.  I have loved sharing it!  I will be working on another album that goes with this trip, but no promises on when you might see it.  I am going to use all of the laser cuts that I got at the Scrapbook Expo, so I am really excited to see how those pages turn out!  If you missed the first two parts you can catch up here: Part 1 and Part 2.

On to the project at hand....

(L) Mom and Dad all dressed up....formal night and a special dinner at Palo.  Delicious adults only restaurant...you have to make reservations and there is a small surcharge to dine there, but TOTALLY worth it! (R)  When we went to pick Zach up after dinner in the Oceaneer's Club, he was hard at work on the computer...foreshadowing of things to come! :)

Our last Port of Call was Disney's own Castaway Cay.  They own a private island in the Bahamas. There was a little damage from a recent hurricane, but all in all it was fabulous day.  There was some light rain that threatened to put a damper on things (you can see by a couple of Zach's pouty faces), but things eventually cleared up and all was well!

Our last night the show was "Until We Meet Again" and then there was the Farewell Party were all the characters were out and strutting their stuff.  It was quite the experience!

I captured as many pictures as I could of all the Disney details all over the ship.  I also added a 6x12 insert and included even more photos...this was a really fun layout!

I can take no credit for this gem.  I totally scrap lifted it from Pinterest - I wish I could give proper credit, but I didn't pin it.  Since I didn't have this Cricut cartridge, I figured that I wouldn't ever be able to make it.  I happened to be at a crop where there was a plethora of cartridges and luckily I stumbled upon this one.  I just love how it turned out!  I put our final on board bill, dining tickets and keys to the world  in the "pocket".

These are front and backs of three 6x12 inserts that I used to add some extra photos.  The first goes with the Pirates in the Caribbean night.  The second is more "Diney in the Details" and the third is from our day at Castaway Cay (that picture of Zach with Mickey, still just melts my heart).

These final two are fronts and backs of some additional inserts I used from the small variety pack. Large one is from Castaway Cay when we met Mickey - the back is one of the laser cuts that I got at the Scrapbook Expo and I still plan to add something to this card even if it is only lettering.  Top right is from the Character Breakfast morning.  The bottom is from our morning in St. Thomas.

That about wraps it up on this one for now.  There will eventually be a bit more, but I am so relieved to have this part documented for us to enjoy.  As always, if you see a layout that you love, feel free to add to a Pinterest board...just click and pin!

I am already signed up for a crop on National Scrapbook Day and am going to participate in this workshop through Big Picture Classes.  Fellow scrapbookers - it is totally free to register and they are going to have some big names sharing techniques and ideas.  The goal of the workshop, besides having fun, is to post 10,000 layouts to Instagram over that weekend.  There will of course be a special hashtag.  If you join in the fun, please let me know!  Have a wonderful weekend!

Sorry...Just a Quickie

Happy Friday!  I fully intended to post the last of my Disney album today.  I sat down at 8:30 last night to get started and by almost 10:00, I still had not managed to get one photo loaded.  Technology is fabulous when everything is running smoothly, but when it isn't....grrrrrrrr!!!  I am so sorry to those of you that were expecting some layouts today, but trust that I meant well and I gave it the old college try!  I am hoping for better luck over the weekend.

Do you have anything fun planned for the weekend?  I was thinking of maybe treating myself to Dallas Blooms at the Dallas Arboretum.  I can get in  a little exercise and take in all the beautiful flowers.  We will see...I guess it will all depend on the crazy Texas weather.  Have a wonderful weekend...doing whatever makes you happy!

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Third Thursday Scrapbook Stories: March 2013

You guys are going to get a little break from Disney before I post the last of the album tomorrow.  Katie is here today for Third Thursday Scrapbook Stories.  Katie and her hubby are the proud owners of their first home and you better believe Katie was documenting it all...the good, the bad and the ugly in Week 7 of her Project Life album.


Hi everyone!

First of all, I have to tell you how excited I am about the changes that Julie is planning for her blog (if you missed that post, you can read it right here) And I am thrilled to be continuing on as a contributor here. It has been wonderful to be able to share here with you, and I am so happy to be continuing!

Second, I have a Project Life layout for you today :)

Week 7 | February 10 - February 16

This week was a pretty crazy one around here (although really, when are they not?) In addition to all of the "regular" craziness, we were moving this week and it was Valentine's Day on Friday. Valentine's Day is my favorite holiday, and this year, we were planning on celebrating by closing on our house! Up until Thursday afternoon, everything was looking great for a 10am close on Friday morning (confirmed several times by our mortgage company)

Unfortunately, on Thursday - while the movers were packing all of our things and loading everything we owned onto a truck - the mortgage company called. Despite all those confirmations for Friday, they weren't able to finish putting together out paperwork in time (due to someone being out sick during the week!) There was a serious chance we wouldn't close on Friday. And everything they just put on the truck was being delivered to the house on Saturday!

Friday was seriously stressful not knowing what would happen. But I was so excited when I found this Project Life card because I was able to lay everything out exactly as it happened that day!

AJ managed to talk to someone very high up at the mortgage company who promised we'd close that day. But there were a few more snafus on the way, including the documents getting to title late, and then the document file not opening, and then the mortgage company not wiring over the money for the seller! It was all crazy, but we finally closed - only 8 hours after we thought we would.

We were so happy to finally have the keys in our hand. And to be in our own home! It was the best first Valentine's Day present :)

AJ and I can't be alone in this home closing drama! Do you have any crazy house buying stories?


Thank you, Katie for being here today and sharing such a special time with my readers!  Don't forget to stop by tomorrow to see the last of my Disney album.  And people, I got the first glimpse tonight of some of my design elements for the new blog design....I was squealing with delight....so much different than my current design.  I can't wait!  Make it a great Thursday!

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Disney Cruise Scrapbook: Part 2

I hope that you all enjoyed part one of the scrapbook.  If you missed it, you can catch up here.  As I mentioned yesterday, I had originally planned to do this whole album with pocket pages, but as I think you will see with Part 2, I definitely had my fair share of traditional layouts as well.

The left side of the page is documenting our arrival into St. Maarten.  For this day we booked a beach day excursion where we were dropped off at Orient Bay for a big part of the day.  Hands down, St. Maarten has the most beautiful beaches and water that I have had the pleasure of experiencing.  I could have easily spent several days there!

Here is the rest of St. Maarten - sandcastles were built and mama got some relaxing time under the umbrella.  I was definitely a little camera happy this day!

After leaving St. Maarten, we celebrated Pirates in the Caribbean night.  We all wore pirate bandanas at dinner, and the evening menu was printed up like a treasure map.  They had a special show with fireworks on deck that evening, but somebody was way too tuckered out to attend.  Luckily, his dad went up and captured a few pictures that I added with a 6x12 insert.

I love this layout!  I just gathered a bunch of pictures that I had of Zach enjoying the big Mickey pool. The paper and stickers came from a kit that I purchased at one of the gift shops on the ship.

These were just  a few fun pictures that I wanted to document.  We were excited to get to the cabin each night to see what kind of towel animal we had waiting. I am a sucker for sleeping kids (even now that mine is 13), but i also loved that in addition to our fun towels animals, we were also surprised that during evening turndown  Mickey and Goofy got tucked in too!

 Our day in St. Thomas was extra special because it was also Zachary's 5th birthday.  I couldn't get enough of that gorgeous water and we had a full day planned.

We took the Sky Tram to the this little restaurant were dad and I sampled the Bushwacker...seriously delicious adult beverage, and took in the beautiful views.  Then we watched the bird show which Zachary really enjoyed.

Later in the day we took the Dubloon Sail and snorkeled with  huge turtles....we got really close to them and I was so proud of Zach!  He paddled out and dunked his head so he could get a good look. The right side is cute pics I captured of him opening his birthday basket from mom, dad and Mickey. We ordered it from a shop in Orlando and they made sure it was on the ship before we took off.  The ship delivered it to our state room on Zach's special day...what a treat!

On the evening of Zach's birthday he got the royal treatment.  He received this huge slice of birthday cake with the awesome banner, he wore a button all day long that said "It's My Birthday", and even got a special meeting with Belle!

The character breakfast was so much fun!  We got to meet Mickey, Goofy, Pluto and Chip n Dale. This and the layout above are two of my favorites.

Well that wraps up Part 2.  If you are excited about any of the layouts, I would love for to give them a little Pinterest Love...just click and pin!!!  Part 3 will have to wait until Friday, because Thursday, Katie will be here for Third Thursday Scrapbook Stories.  Can't wait to see what she has to share.  Thank you so much for stopping by!

A little after the fact....I am linking up with Capturing Magical Memories for Memory Keeping Monday....they do digital over there, and the layouts are amazing.  Luckily, they are open to all scrappers, so I still feel welcome......

Memory Keeping Monday

Monday, March 17, 2014

Disney Cruise Scrapbook: Part 1

I can't tell you how excited I am to finally share this album!  This is the only Disney themed project that I have ever done and it has been so much fun.  Even though the main book is pretty much complete, I have another book that I will be working on that goes with it, so the fun doesn't have to end quite yet.

Not to put a damper on the parade, but I thought I should give you a little background.  Zach's dad and I separated shortly after this trip.  I think that is the main reason it has taken me over 8 years to finally get this thing going.  For a long time, I really had no desire to document it but then one day I woke up, threw on my big girl panties and realized that it needed to be done...if not for me, then for my son.  I scrapped it true to life...there was no cutting my ex out of pictures or "convenient" crops.  I left it all just the way it happened.   It was a wonderful trip filled with great memories and that is the way I wanted it documented.  Zach's father and I get along very well and work together to do what is best for our son, and for that I beyond grateful. Oh yea, I was also high school skinny..so don't let that freak you out.  It really is me!

Let's get started....my first picture is just a simple one to show you the album that I used.  Before, I was a die hard fan of the post bound albums...I really like the way they lay when you are highlighting a double page spread...but they are labor intensive.  Especially when you tend to have big albums like I do.  Needless to say I have made the switch.  I thought this black album with white polka dots was the perfect compliment to my Disney themed album.  This album is Project Life by Becky Higgins and don't quote me, but I think it is for the Midnight Edition.

These are just a couple of fun things that I adhered to the inside of the cover.  A Disney sticker that I think I found at Hobby Lobby and then a post card that Zach received from Mickey himself telling him how excited he was that he was going to get to help Zach celebrate his birthday.  If you don't know about he DIS boards and you are a newbie to Disney...don't take your trip without looking into them...more on that later.

I took a picture of the page lifter, but only because I fancied it up a bit.  I was not thrilled with how the holes came out, but I did love how the rest turned out.  The page lifters are important as they keep the pages of your albums from bending during storage, but they can be pretty boring and they are just begging for a little attention.  For those of you that asked me how I got a 12x12 sheet of paper through the standard printer, with a large enough font to stand out....that is coming soon to a post....PROMISE!

Next is my cover.  In pretty much all of my album, I used the Mickey Font Cricut cartridge for my titles.  Well, I started this album about 7 years ago and never made it past the title page...oops.  I couldn't stand the thought of not using it, so just added a few embellishments from the Say Cheese line from Simple Stories and stuck with the original.

Each night when we returned to our room, there was a Navigator waiting for us for the next day.  It listed all the activities that were going on as well as information about our port city if we were stopping for the day.  I managed to get home with all of ours and used the 8x10 inserts to add them to my album.

We departed from Cape Canaveral.  To be on the safe side, we flew to FL the night before we left and spent the night close to the port.  (L side)  Disney has their own terminal.  There is a huge replica of the Magic and we also got to meet Pluto while we were waiting! (R side)

This was our first "official" (meaning we had to pay for it) Disney photo opp. (L)  I tried to document all the little touches of Disney around our stateroom. (R)

I got some fun pictures from the Sailaway Party.  It was kind of chilly, but everyone was having fun. My favorite part was the big Mickey hands.  As the ship is pulling away Disney employees stand outside the terminal waving good bye wearing big Mickey hands...that is in the bottom right on the left side layout.  The right was from our first day at sea.  The wind was crazy but it didn't put a damper on our day.  Some of the decks were closed though due to the high winds.

By the end of the first full day, out boy was pooped and barely made it through dinner (L).  The right side was the start of Halloween.  A big group of kids from the DIS Boards all did a special trick or treat route and then I had the pleasure of attending a party in the Walt  Disney Suite...what a treat!!!!

The Walt Disney Suite party continues....such sweet, sweet people...all met through, you guessed it, the DIS Boards prior to the cruise.

That about wraps it up for Part 1.  I just realized that almost all of these layouts were made using the Project Life pages.  I had originally planned to do the entire book this way, but caught the layout bug and managed to bust out some really fun double page spreads later in the book.  Thank you so much for stopping by and if any of the layouts catch your eye, I would love for you to Pin them to you favorite board - just click and pin!  Stay tuned for Part 2, coming on Wednesday.

I am linking up with Texas Women Bloggers for:

Texas Women Bloggers