Happy Halloween! & scrapbook pages

October Beginner Basics...for Adornit Scrapbook Company

If you have 45 minutes and a stash of great Adornit product, you can start AND FINISH scrapping your October memories – right now. What a great month for scrapbooking! You could spend hours working on fun layouts of costumes, decorations, and all the creepy treats you make. Then there’s pumpkin carving, trick or treating, the corn maze, spook alley, and the school festival! That’s a lot of scrapping. Adornit has fabulous Halloween and autumn papers and embellishments to help you out.
Here's a big tip for the quickest and easiest way to finish your October layouts: Adornit FOAM ALPHABET STICKERS - uppercase and lowercase. These little wonders pack a big punch on your layouts. They're so inexpensive and easy to use - you’ll want to stash a package in every color. I loved using foam stickers on my October layouts. They turned out pretty cute, but even better, they didn’t take me long because I used the stickers for quick titles. You can even fancy-up the letters with fine-point pens, paints or stamps.

Here’s the whole point of this post. Why do I want you to save time on your Halloween scrapping?? Two words. CHRISTMAS PLANNING. Yes, you gotta get going on your Christmas lists and handmade gifts so you’ll be less stressed in December. I promise...it really helps.

I'm a bag lady

I just bought a new little LUG backpack - now I want to go on a hike. When we were hiking in Jackson Hole this past summer I began to realize that fanny packs are just OUT. If you want to be branded "over the hill" use a fanny pack. So I've been on the lookout for a new backpack to carry my water and m&m's when we go hiking.

Well lucky me, I found a really cute backpack. It's lime green which makes me happy happy. It's the perfect size - not big and bulky, but streamlined and very comfortable. The brand is LUG - you can see their bags all over the internet, but this page shows almost every product. When I found the backpack I kept searching the Lug display for a little cosmetic bag to put little things in like chapstick and spare contacts, but could find nothing. Later when I took out the stuffing paper, there in the bottom of my new backpack was a perfect little cosmetic bag. It came with it and I didn't even know! What a bonus.

I'm also in love with the brown bag - it looks like a perfect size to carry on an airplane. I always take my rolling carry-on suitcase and a bigger bag for magazines, m&m's and a few essentials. But I also have to have my purse because I get disorganized if I don't have everything just where I can find it. (Once I threw my boarding pass in the garbage and had to dig through the trash can to find it when I realized.) So I have to have everything just so. I stuff my purse inside my bigger travel bag because they're getting so picky about only carrying on two items. Now that purses are getting bigger, I need a bigger travel bag. Anyway I might have to open my Christmas planner and add that bag to my gift list - in the section that says hints for Scott to give me. Might as well get something I want. I'm blabbing I know. Bye.


Today is a big day for me!

Today is the day our Cut the Crazy out of Christmas class starts on Big Picture Scrapbooking. I'm thrilled that the day has finally arrived and the class has started - Georgana (my boss) and I have been anticipating this for over six months! You can still sign up for the class too - we're going to spend the whole month of November planning and preparing for Christmas.

I created a Cut the Crazy blog as a place to post "extra" stuff to supplement our Cut the Crazy out of Christmas class. Anyone is invited to come on over and get in on lots of ideas and "advice." My wonderful daughter-in-law Aimee helped me make it look cute.

I just visited Stacy Julian's blog - she's the Big Picture Scrapbooking 'big-wig' as you know. I thought her words were so important. Stacy is referring to scrapbooks in the following paragraph. Please go to her blog to get the full context of her heartfelt post. She writes:

"If I was able to leave one message this weekend with those wonderful ladies, (at a scrapbook store in Montana) this is it:
"Let go. Stop making this so hard. Stop worrying about whether you are doing it right or whether you are good enough or whether you have the right stuff you need or whether you can keep up or whatEVER. If your pictures and stuff aren't organized, do something about it. Stop procrastinating and JUST START telling your stories. Long stories, short stories, stories from this past summer and stories from when you were little. Stop leaving blanks on your pages where you will go back and add journaling. STOP that right now. Start using your own imperfect handwriting and stop thinking it will ruin your page. My goodness girls there is so much good that happens in and through this amazing hobby. Let's just decided to let go and let it happen."

As I begin my Cut the Crazy out of Christmas process which includes making a few scrapbook pages and using my own handwriting in my planners, I hope I can remember the Stacy's advice and just get in and get the job done so I can get to the real business of celebrating a holiday that I love with people I love.


{ blog to check out }

Here's a fun blog for you - especially if you're into quilting or cooking. potsandpins.com is the blog name. You can enter her first-anniversary-of-her-blog contest right now. Incredibly, this blogger made a beautiful Halloween quilt to give away. I tried to lift a photo of the quilt over here, but couldn't make it work. Anyway it's just a click away.


In less than one week (October 30 to be exact) lots and lots of women - I mean hundreds - will join me and Georgana in our Big Picture Scrapbooking class called Cut the Crazy out of Christmas. I have been working on this for so long - fifteen years of 'real-time' classes with my friend Norma Olsen - and now it's going to be online to help women all over the world. I'm excited and proud of everything we put together. Great downloadable handouts, fun projects and a planner that will help get us all organized. Here are a couple of the email ads (that I wrote) that went out to thousands of BPS customers:
Christmas is a time of great excitement and activity - and sometimes chaos. It's also a time when we want to feel moments of peace and joy.
The things we long for at Christmas:
--opportunities to sit by the fire with family and friends
--time to create handmade gifts
--activities with children that include service & creativity -
these simply won't happen if we don't PLAN ahead and then leave space for them on our December calendars.
Christmas gets crazy because we try to cram everything into four short weeks. At some point, we must accept that it is unrealistic to have it all, do it all, and be it all.
The Cut the Crazy out of Christmas approach helps you so that:
{Love and joy can really be yours this holiday season.}

The 'cut the crazy' ladies, Georgana and Debbie, teamed with Big Picture Scrapbooking, can help bring a new perspective on how you approach Christmas this year. The workshop includes a downloadable planner that will change the way you plan for the holidays…plus projects and lots of ideas. We invite you to join us!
Cut the Crazy out of Christmas
Have yourself a merry and organized Christmas! Georgana Hall and Debbie Raymond are here to show you how in a holiday class called Cut the Crazy out of Christmas.

The interesting thing about Christmas is that it can be challenging in different ways depending on your circumstances. Christmas has the power to magnify our emotions, positive or negative. Well, Georgana and Debbie want to help! They believe that with some reflection and planning (and good old positive attitude), the holidays can be a time of joy, no matter what your situation.

The goal of this workshop is to help you look ahead and prepare in a way that will make the holiday season more positive and meaningful. Georgana and Debbie have lots of ideas for traditions, decorating, and parties. You'll love the downloadable Christmas planner to get help you get organized. Together you'll compare notes with other BPS students about their holiday stresses and successes.
Sign up now: peace and organization are just around the corner!


muSic in the bAckgrouNd

I’m sitting at the computer proofreading my son-in-law’s master’s thesis. It could be kind of boring – no offense Winston : ) I mean it’s a thesis on teaching math. Actually I'm very engaged and interested, because I’m on the hunt to find mistakes and fix them, one of my favorite things to do. But what’s making the morning really pleasant is the music coming out of my computer. Here, I’ll let Becky tell you about it...

Post from Becky's blog titled Sick of My Ipod: "The shuffle gods have not been good to me for a very long time. My music is old and outdated. Today I discovered Pandora. Go check it out! Jason Myles Goss is playing right now and I like it!"

So I checked out Pandora and it's great. It has tons of cool features to experiment with later. You enter one song or artist you like and it automatically gives you a whole playlist of similar music.

Now, you have to give my ‘radio station’ a try. I typed in Steve Tyrell and up came the best music playlist. Song after song by Steve Tyrell, Michael Buble, Nat King Cole, Tony Bennett, Frank Sinatra (be sure to find this song somewhere and listen to it - "I've Got You Under My Skin - duet with Frank and Bono). Well, gotta get back to 'summative assessment' and other math teaching tools.

I'll thank Becky for you for the Pandora recommendation. btw - who's Jason Myles Goss???


It's beginning to look a lot like...Christmas catalogs!

(Photos from Ballard Designs)
Yippee - Christmas catalogs are filling my mailbox. Today the new Ballard Design catalog arrived - filled with traditional decorations that work perfectly in my house. The "Della Robia" Wreath and Topiary made me want to line up the crafty girls at work and do a little "craft-lifting." Surely between Carolee, Tammy, Georgana and Alison, we could figure out how to make these. Girls?...

My top number one favorite catalog for Christmas inspiration is the Pottery Barn catalog, followed closely by Crate and Barrel. Pottery Barn is more elegant, more elaborate, and completely beautiful. I just spent a minute on their website and they have one heck of a web design staff. The website has EVERYTHING - from video tours of people's beautifully decorated homes to instructions on how to put together the classic Pottery Barn 'arrangements.' Crate and Barrel, which is more casual, just makes me smile when I look through it - especially their Christmas dancing reindeer decorating everything from dishes to doormats. Cute.
Here's the description from the catalog - I thought it was interesting:
Della Robbia Wreath & Topiary from Ballard Designs
In the 18th century, holiday greenery was decorated with fruit in the della robbia style as a promise of the bountiful greeting guests could expect inside. The lush fabric pine, magnolia and oak leaves of our Della Robbia Wreath & Topiary are packed with realistic figs, oranges, apples, pears, pomegranates and berries, adding a splash of bright, festive color to your holiday setting.


tribute to moms everywhere

And tonight I’d like to give a big shout out to all you moms out there – especially moms of kids under eight. You are wonderful, awesome, amazing, and I’m sure, exhausted. You probably don’t even appreciate what an accomplishment it is to even get dressed in the morning. And dinner in the crockpot….what were we thinking.

I have been tending my grandbabies. Not even all at the same time (we had the girls for a couple of days, then the little five-month-old boy for a couple of days) but still, it’s wearing me out. I consider myself an energetic healthy person, but I’m beat. I’ve come to fully appreciate what I did as a mom of young ones, and what you’re doing. Give yourselves a pat on the back.

Tonight when I changed the baby's diaper I learned the process is easier if you use four diapers. 1. the diaper you take off. 2. the new diaper you're putting on. 3. a diaper to cover the waterworks (since he soaked his shirt and face earlier) and 4. a diaper for him to grab and put in his mouth to keep him distracted. Once I got that figured out, things went much smoother.

Now listen to me when I tell you young moms something I learned a long time ago: DON’T BE SO HARD ON YOUR KIDS and DON’T BE SO HARD ON YOURSELF. I learned this from someone older and wiser when my kids were teenagers and it was almost too late. I wish someone had told me 15 years earlier. She said she wished she hadn’t been so hard on her sons. I took that to heart and tried to be kinder – to myself too. I think it’s very important. Believe me, they grow so fast.

I just love this new little grandson – he’s a joy. He’s a most pleasant little baby – patient, tolerant and with the cutest smiles I’ve ever seen. And I can't wait to tend him again - honest!


saVed by the coRn mAze

We're tending our cute grandkids this week - the girls for a couple of days, then baby Carter for a couple more. We are thrilled to help out Aaron and Aimee who are away celebrating their tenth anniversary. It has been an action-packed day with these two girls. So far Brookelyn, seven, has made about ten craft projects, including a Halloween banner and lollipop ghosts. When Scott got home, I said, "We have GOT to get out of this house." Thank goodness for nice weather and the local corn maze. The corn maze was awesome. After about ten minutes of wandering through the tall corn, Bailee, four, said in a very loud, upset voice, "We have been walking for hours."
The girls had a blast. Scott too. Here Brookie is jumping off the Haystack Jump - or I should say Scott is 'kicking her off.' There was also a straw bale fort, tire swings and Halloween lights everywhere. It was really well done. Both girls ran and ran for three solid hours - raising my hopes for an early bedtime tonight.
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^ Meet Me @ Borders 2day ^

Sometimes, just for fun, I look at The Martha Blog, because honestly, Martha Stewart is a pretty interesting and inspring woman. Somewhere there I found an announcment about THIS BOOK on home decorating. It is available starting today, Tuesday, October 14. It is written by the editors of domino magazine, one of the magazines I read when I drop into Borders for a magazine fix. What drew me to the book is the cover. I love the colors and the flowers and especially the little bird. My mom loves birds and I think that has influenced me. Plus, birds are EVERYWHERE in scrapbooking and home decor.

I can't wait to look through the book because I need some inspiration for my newly remodeled basement. What's left is the finishing touches - the hard part. If I don't hurry and get something on the walls in the TV room, Scott will be finding his Darth Vadar poster and his Star Trek Spaceship Enterprise Clock (NCC 1701 - the original Star Trek) to hang back up. I have to avoid that at all costs.

Here is the paragraph about the book from another blog. I guess "I've been living under a rock."
You would have to be living under a rock to miss this one but I just have to add my voice to the chorus clamoring to get their hands on Domino: The Book of Decorating (Simon & Schuster) by domino magazine editors Deborah Needleman, Sara Ruffin Costello and Dara Caponigro. Tuesday, October 14 marks its debut. The book is a wonderfully colorful room-by-room guide, sharing an array of insider interior design tips, expert shopping strategies and personal design experiences. Find it at bookstores nationwide and via amazon.com


mother nature isn't even funny

I haven't even sat on my cute bench for more than five minutes this year. Please...another chance.
My roses look soooo cold.
Waking up to three inches of snow on the ground this morning made me less than happy about the next six months. Yes, I said six months - that puts us into mid-April - which is pretty realistic and miserable. I'm trying to have a positive attitude. I'm trying to convince myself that I can cope with the cold. I'm going to buy more polar fleece clothes tomorrow, because new polar fleece is the warmest. (I am so grateful for polar fleece; have you ever put a fleece blanket in the dryer for about five minutes, then wrapped yourself up in it? Ahhh.)
Today when I arrived at work, frozen to the bone even though my car heater does work, I walked up the stairs and through the door and was greeted with WARMTH. The heat was going full blast. Tammy had cranked it up and it felt so good. (When she got there the temp was 58 in our office area.) Then, when the heat flipped off, I had my own little desk heater that Carolee bought me last year :) So I turned that on, then played my CD of "Deb's Happy Favorites" and I became warm inside and out.
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finally some fall decorations

Today felt like the day to finally get out my October decorations. My little crow-girlfriend above has been hanging out with sunflowers, but i put them away and got out the pumpkins. I think this crow was the last doll-type thing I made (about ten years ago, how sad) so I keep her out Sept. thru November. I love the Longaberger basket she's leaning against - it's my favorite one of my collection. And the mini quilt was handmade by quilt artist Linda Hansen - I love getting it out along with a few others that Linda made.
My china hutch looks the best in the fall. We bought my china in Germany when we lived there from 1975 to 1977. It's a pattern called Summerday by Villeroy and Boch and I relive happy memories when I get it out. Nothing equals the dishes and housewares displays in stores and shops in Germany - and all over Europe. Someday we'll return and visit the villages we lived in.
This pumpkin with the blackbird on top is a favorite. And I love the smell of the candle I bought just last night from Bath and Body - it's yummy pumpkiny. As I look out my kitchen window I can't believe that the leaves on the trees are still green. It seems like the leaves are slow to turn and fall this year in the valley. I guess this weekend will bring cooler temps and more 'appropriate' fall coolers.
I like books that match my seasonal decor. It REALLY helps if they're good books - and this one is. It's a book full of quotes and philosophy collected by the fictional Father Tim, of the Mitford books series. Author Jan Karon has found the best quotes and scriptures and compiled them into this lovely book. Need a gift idea - this would be a good one. Hmmmmm. From page one: "the cheerful heart has a continual feast." Proverbs 15:15. And from page almost the end (the pages aren't numbered):
"Life is this simple: we are living in a world that is
absolutely transparent, and God is shining through
it all the time." Thos. Merton.
So you see, from cover to cover, it's a wonderful book. And pretty too!

This folk art piece just makes me smile. It's cute, big, & hangs inside my back door.

The sun was shining through my west windows and making everything sparkle. I had a visit from a friend and as I invited her in I looked around and the sparkle disappeared as I noticed the mess that she probably saw. You know how it is when you're 'changing seasons.' This led me to resolve to get out my old Flylady notes and start routines again in earnest. Flylady teaches about CHAOS, an acronym for can't have anyone over syndrome. It's such good a home management approach. Did this post end negatively?? Or just realistically.


:: Scott's Insect Fascination ::

I called Scott into the garage tonight, "Hey, look at this praying mantis," I said, feeling rather smart that I had noticed the insect on a carpet remnant and that I knew what it was. "That's not a praying mantis," said the insect enthusiast, "It's one of those leaf bugs." "Well it's amazing--it really does look like a leaf," I said, ready to move on to more important things, but trying to act interested. "Go get the camera," said Scott, "let's put a picture of the bug on your blog." "I don't want a bug on my blog. If you want the bug blogged you'll have to start your own blog," I said in a rude way, though I don't know why I'd ever want to be rude to such a nice husband. He ignored me and spent half an hour photographing the bug.
So here is the leaf bug on my blog. After seeing the photos, I decided that it was interesting blog material. You'll have to look closely to see the bug on the branch below. It really is a 'wonder of nature.'


the end of a very nice day : )

Here I am blogging as usual at the end of the day. It's after midnight and I have to make myself go to bed. My usual bedtime is 11:47. That has been my bedtime for at least 18 years. We are nightowls around here - Scott is even worse than I am - he never gets to bed before one or even 1:30. I don't know how he functions at work - once he fell asleep during an eye exam. (And, he's the doctor lol.) But that was an isolated case, honest. Many years ago when the kids were little, I would stay up half the night to sew or read or even do laundry. I finally decided I had to get in control and get to bed at night. So I made myself a bedtime I could remember - 11:47. It rhymes. Lots of people know my bedtime now. Once they were off to college or married, my kids knew that if they wanted to talk to Scott and not me, they just had to call after 11:47. Suzie and her dad had lots of good late night chats. I don't know why I told you this - maybe to help someone else with their bedtime. Oh, don't think I sleep 'til noon. One of my saddest things in life is that I can only sleep for six hours, then my eyes fly open. I wish I could sleep in. Just sometimes. But if I try to go back to sleep, words from my dad echo in my head, "Mind over mattress." "Don't try to go back to sleep, try to get up."
Today we watched General Conference on TV. (The worldwide twice-yearly conference for the LDS church.) It was the second conference for my brother, Gary, who was made a church General Authority last April. We have loved having him and his wife Lesa and their son Kyle home for a week from their assignment in Japan. We didn't go to Salt Lake because Scott is on-call this week and couldn't leave town. But watching on TV with licorice and Twix bars is just as good. I usually take careful notes, but today I just decided to relax and enjoy listening and watching for Gary on the screen. I did write a few lines from President Monson's speech this morning, because his words were so well-spoken. Here is what I loved:
Find joy in the journey NOW.

What is most important involves the people around us.

"They do not love that do not show their love." Shakespeare

Don't put things off until tomorrow. One day each of us will run out of tomorrows.

It’s always our choi
ce which secret garden we will tend.

Happy All My Life – title of book by woman was blind most of her life.


[ a peek into the quilt world ]

Cotton Blossoms by Camille and Bonnie for Moda

I get quite a kick out of blog-land. Recently I posted about a darling young gal with a wonderful pattern and fabric company - and whaddayaknow - she stumbled onto my post and left a comment on my blog. Here's her blog address http://www.camilleroskelley.typepad.com .

OK - you ask - why are you so excited? Because, first of all her patterns and fabrics are fresh and unique and make me want to sew. AND when I was looking at all her photos from the Portland Quilt Market, there she was in photos with all the women I love to follow in quilting and fabric design - Amy Butler, Sandy Gervais, Heather Bailey, Joanna Figueroa of Fig Tree, Nancy Halvorsen of Art to Heart, Sandy of American Jane patterns, Sandi Henderson of Portobello Pixie...for years I have loved looking at all their fabrics and finished projects - some of them long before blogs and websites were even thought of, like Camille's mom at Cotton Way. Here's Camille's comment:

Hi Debbie! I randomly came across your blog today, what are the odds? I am assuming it was you who left a message about the pin cushions, sorry I hadn't returned your call yet, it was on the list for today! The pin cushions in the picture are my mom's pattern Polka Dot Pin Cushions, and you can find it at Cottonway.com. I'll try to post a direct link, but just in case it doesn't work, that is where you can find them.
http://www.cottonway.com/zencart/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=6&products_id=124 Hope that helps! Thanks for the shout out, you have SUCH a cute blog!
September 30, 2008 4:10 PM

Thanks Camille - I am on my way to Red Rooster our wonderful local quilt shop to look for your patterns and fabrics and special order if they're not there.

Red Rooster is owned by my friend Kay Neilson - it's charming place with lots of fabrics and patterns to look at. They just started a website and it was convenient to hop on and check out their fall class schedule.


it was one week ago today

Just had to post three more photos of our time in Southern Utah. We spent a half day on the road to Hell's Backbone, pictured above. It was about a 50 mile road, but unpaved most of the way, so it took the afternoon. The 'high point' was called Hell's Backbone - an incredible canyon that literally sent a chill through me as we looked down over the cliffs. Was I surprised when Scott took off for the highest rocks. No. I didn't even protest. Just cheerfully said, "Smile," as I snapped the photo as if he were sitting on fake red rocks in Disneyland.
I love golden quakies in the fall. I took a long walk around a charming little mountain lake called Posey Lake - while Scott was painting. The leaves were starting to turn and the temperature was perfect. If I were a camper, which I'm not, I'd want to go to this campground.
This was my little friend - he became very friendly because I kept throwing out little crumbs of Spicy Sweet Chili Doritos (those things are spicy and hot - I couldn't believe how much he liked them!) as I sat in the car and worked on my laptop. That's my car door in the left of the photo. I was finishing up writing the content of our Cut the Crazy out of Christmas class for Big Picture Scrapbooking. I noticed this little chipmunk scampering in and out so I threw him some treats and soon he became comfortable with me and sat on the log and munched away.
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