Wednesday, December 31, 2008

A Couple of Christmas Pics!

Picture with Santa. This was harder to get than I needed it to be, but it turned out great!
Christmas morning with their stockings.

Makaela checking out all that Santa brought.

Hannah opening what seems like her millionth gift!

Makaela enjoying her presents the next day.

Snow in the Tehachapi mountains. We lied to get up past the road closure team and had the sledding hills ALL to ourselves. Go 4 wheel drive!

On the road up.

Hannah and Joel hiking up the hill. She kept wanting go higher.

Mommy and her special big girl. We thought it too cold to bring Makaela.

Hannah going off the jump. She figured out her pants made a good sledding surface.

Me going off the jump. A little more air than Hannah.

And Joel going off the same jump. Whoa! is all I can say. He was hurting after this one.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008


This made me laugh so I had to share. I asked Hannah to run up the stairs and put something in my bathroom for me and she turned and looked at me and said, "Mommy, I can't run up the stairs cuz I don't have long legs." I forget how literally kids take things at this age. :)

Sunday, December 28, 2008

don't give up on me yet!

Wow! I can't believe it's been over a month since my last post! I hate that about other blogs and hope you can forgive me. I am posting this one from my phone since we are still without Internet in this new house. Yes, we are moved in as of 2 weeks ago though still very much living out of boxes. It has been crazy. We hosted our annual Christmas party for our college friends (over 40 people) on the 20th. So I had to get the house in somewhat of a habitable space so everyone could be comfortable not to mention well fed. Don't worry, we do potluck for this shindig. But then it was Christmas #1 at my dad's on the 24th. Then #2 here at the house with the girls on Christmas morning. #3 at my mom's mom's house in the afternoon, #4 at my dad's mom's that night, and then #5 up at Joel's parent's this whole past weekend. I feel like I have been in a large state of chaos for the past 2 months what with moving out of old house into my dad's and then into our new house from there. Fortunately the hurdles of moving and holidays are behind me and I can attempt to focus on unpacking. I wish I could say I have pictures of various Scrapbooking projects/ gifts to post but none are complete. Not even my Christmas cards. They're still a work in progress. But darn it all, I WILL be sending them out, even if they are a week or two late!!!

Joel, Hannah and I had a great time today in the snow up in Tehachapi (where the inlaws live). Here in So. CA, we don't get much snow so I am in awe when I get to experience it firsthand. Hopefully my phone and Blogger will let me upload a pic from my phone so you can get a small sense of what I saw. It was beautiful!!! I promise to post more pics from the digital camera soon. I just need Internet (ahem ... Joel?).

Hopefully I can post again soon, but if not everyone please have a Happy New Year!!!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

So Thankful ...

... for so many things.

For God.

For a beautiful and loving ...

For daughters Hannah, Makaela and the best husband, Joel.

For wonderful friends.

For health.

For food on the table.

For a job.

For the ability to buy a new home.

For a roof over our head when in between homes (thanks Dad).

For the chance to wake up each day and decide to become a better person.

For my dog, Buddy.

For lessons learned.

For lessons to be learned.

For perspective.

For laughter.

For tears.

For emotions.

For choice.

For freedom.

For a military who serves to protect that freedom.

For creative talent that directs me to the theraputic hobby of scrapbooking.

For you who take a small interest in my life by reading this blog.

Happy Thanksgiving. May you be as blessed as I am and may you have the power to recognize your blessings.

That "FAMILY" project was designed by Cindy Farbach. I LOVE it. It was a class she taught a couple of weeks ago at SGT. I can't stop staring at it. The colors are so me and I just know it will bring me great inspiration.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Quick Update!

I know I know. I have been terrible about blogging. And I totally miss it. It's kind of hard here at my dad's to get on the computer and really devote a large amount of time to it. Gotta make sure the kids aren't destroying Papa's house or disrupting them by making too much noise. Gotta make sure I am not hogging the computer. I do have to share with my dad, his wife, and of course hubby Joel. Then there's just every day life not to mention a cold that has worked its way through all of us now. Groan! Oh and I recently discovered Facebook and have been spending some time there reconnecting with long lost friends. Pretty cool but can be addicting.

So anyways, what's up with me? Well I am sure I mentioned we sold our house and were officially out of it in late October. Began the house hunting process and am pleased to announce we are in escrow on a lovely home in Chino Hills. We're essentially doubling the size our home!!! Sadly we're sacrificing the yard, but we'll be in a great neighborhood with a huge park that's a 2 minute walk up from our house. It's also a huge walking neighborhood, so we've promised to get Buddy dog out often for walks. Here's a pic of the front. I'll post more and tell the VERY interesting story behind this house once escrow has closed. Don't want to jinx it too much. It's not mine yet.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Did you vote?

So I am about to step out the door to go vote. I am dragging my poor, unsuspecting girls with me. Please Lord let me make it through this task!

I hope that you all will vote. I feel it's such an important thing to do. Do I like the chore of actually doing it? Heck no! But I will. Because as I heard someone commenting on NFL Football of all things, "It's your duty and your privilege." I think back to how hard people fought and worked so that I, a woman, could vote. And those who fought so that my husband, a Filipino man, could vote.

I wish I could say I felt more confident in my choices of what I am voting for. Or maybe I wish I had better choices. Nonetheless, they are what they are. I feel like I can't bitch and complain about anything if I didn't take a few hours out of my day to vote on the direction I hope my country will go in. We all have a voice. My theory is that if we could get this lazy nation of ours to show up in numbers of 90% or more to vote, the politicians would not be able to lie to us anymore. They would have to be accountable because if not, then the next election, 90% of the population would show up to vote them out of office. I think Americans have NO idea what power we could have if we all got out and voiced our wants throug voting. People argue, that we don't want "all those idiots" voting. Well I will admit that there are people that understand the issues of this election a LOT more than I do, but am I an idiot for going out and performing my civic duty? I think not!

So I encourage you to vote today. I don't care who you vote for, but use the power of your voice that our democracy allows us. And don't use the old "I don't know where my polling location is", or "I didn't receive a sample ballot" as an excuse not to. I didn't receive a sample ballot and am going to have to go through the extra rigmarole to get them to allow me to vote.

Happy Election Day!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

I know I am late ... what else is new?

Finally the Halloween pictures!

Makaela, the mermaid ...

Hannah the dragon (she wasn't feeling very well)...

A happy mermaid ...

Sisters in costume ...
Ready to hit the streets for candy ...
The mermaid couldn't hang while trick-or-treating ...

Hannah and a "fat car" (fast car) ...

I hope your Halloween was as wonderful as ours. Now on to Thanksgiving!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Gettin in the mood

I saw this idea on Martha Stewart's website and fell in love. I am inspired in so many ways by this picture. I love the pumpkin sconces themselves. They're made of a medium sized pumpkin with a mini pumpkin topper. You can see the instructions here.
But I really love the pile of pumpkins and gourds on the ground! How cool is that?! And I am thinking this might even be a good layout design. A pile of embellishments at the bottom of a page (buttons, flowers, sequins, etc.) and then three scattered images floating above. I'll have to play with it, but it might work.
I just love Fall. It's amazing how the temperature can be the same as a Summer day, but there's something different. A smell; a feeling; I don't know. It's just different. Hannah is loving all the Halloween decorations popping up in front of people's houses. I remember last year having to explain where they all went after Halloween had passed. We told her they were sleeping. So now they're all waking up and it's great. If only I had a house to decorate. Sigh!

Friday, October 10, 2008

Free Online Class at

Here's an exciting bit. Jessica Sprague (a well renowned scrapbooker who does a lot digitally) will be offering a free online class with no limit on the class size. This class is geared towards scrapbooking stories in your life. The ones that tend to occur outside of the big holidays and such we all tend to scrapbook. I am going to participate. This will be my first time doing anything like this. Visit her blog here for more details. I think it's going to be fun. Registration for the class opens on 10/20/08.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Love this!

What are you going to do?

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Happy Birthday Special Girl!

My baby's 3! I still am not sure how this happened. But what a wonderful 3 year old I have. As you can see she got a brand new bike with handle bar streamers and all. May you ride like the wind my love!

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Nothing to say ...

OK, in order to update my blog list, I think I have to make a post. This will allow me to see the little icon I need to click on to get in there and do my thing. So sorry for the wasted blog. Enjoy the last day of September. Tomorrow my first baby will be THREE years old. Holy cow! I can't believe how quickly time has passed. Today we'll be making her cake since mommy has to work tomorrow. If I can leave her for a moment to snap a picture, I will try to post later today. Ta-ta.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

I scored!

Check out my beautiful journal I got in the swap. Thanks Cat. I love it.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Three Things

First, a full picture of that journal swap item I made. Illyse got it and said she liked it a lot. So here it is:

Second, a glimpse of the class Barbara and I will be debuting at Scrappin Good Times' class kickoff next Friday 10/3. It's a 2-page layout plus a Merry Christmas garland.

And finally, a picture of a journal I created for SGT's Passionately Pink For the Cure raffle -- an effort to help raise money for breast cancer research.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008


If you're in a super happy mood then please don't read ... because I am not. I have the blues. This past week has not been a good one for dogs and I have shed more tears than I have in a long long time. It began last Thursday when I got a text in the middle of the night from my sister saying that her little Puggle, Daisy, had been hit by a car and died on the way to the vet. This destroyed me! And I hadn't even met the sweet little dog. Needless to say, my sister was a wreck. This little dog had become a best bud to my mom's dog Marty who is sadly starved for attention. Finally he had a playmate and then she was yanked away from him. My sister said he KNEW something had happened and his tail didn't wag once for the whole next day. Then on my friend's blog yesterday, I read about her puppy getting sick and needing to be put down. It was the cutest little thing ever. Again though, a dog I had never met. And tonight while I was on a shopping spree at Michael's to buy some last minute items for a class I am teaching in November, I get a call from my husband telling me that a neighbor's dog was just struck by a car and killed in front of our house and we have the other dog belonging to the same neighbor in our backyard. Fortunately my husband was able to grab that one before it too ran into the busy street. My husband said when the neighbor came to pick up his dog, he was pretty broken up. I tried to stay away as long as could so as to avoid the sight of them picking up their deceased dog. Wouldn't you know it, as I was turning onto our street, they were doing just that. More tears! I can't take it anymore!!!! I am so so so sad! Dogs are the sweetest most innocent creatures in the world -- at least from where I see it. And for those 3 dogs' lives to be ended in such a way is just heartbreaking to me. I know they are in a better place and am trying my best to imagine them in Doggy Heaven on fluffy clouds, running, jumping, and eating the biggest bones you ever saw. I so hope this string is over. I don't think I have any tears left. And Lord please keep all the dogs I do know safe and healthy.

Sorry to bum you all out. Just had to write it. Call it my therapy.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Here's to you Nieman-Marcus! - UPDATED

UPDATE: found out this is a hoax. But the recipe might be worth a darn. Who knows?

A fellow scrapbooker of mine shared what's below:

A friend of mine and her daughter recently had lunch at Neiman-Marcus. After their meal was finished, my friend’s daughter wanted a cookie. To make a long story short, the Neiman-Marcus cookie was delicious so my friend asked the waiter if she could have the recipe. The waiter said “yes” for two fifty. My friend thought “great”. She got the recipe but to her surprise when she received her statement, the recipe was $250.00. She tried everything to get her money back but to no avail so she is sharing the Neiman-Marcus cookie recipe with all of us cookie lovers! With the holiday season approaching, which means extra baking, I thought I would pass this on. Enjoy!

2 cups butter 24 oz. chocolate chips
4 cups flour 2 cups brown sugar
2 tsp. baking soda 1 tsp. salt
2 cups sugar 1 - 8oz. hershey bar (grated)
5 cups blended oatmeal 4 eggs
2 tsp. baking powder 2 tsp. vanilla
3 cups chopped nuts (your choice)

Measure oatmeal, and blend in a blender to a fine powder. Cream the butter and both sugars. Add eggs and vanilla, mix together with flour, oatmeal, salt, baking powder and baking soda. Add chocolate chips, hershey bar and nuts. Roll into balls and place two inches apart on a cookie sheet. Bake for 10 minutes at 375 degrees. Makes 112 cookies. (Recipe may be halved)

Monday, September 22, 2008

Fun at the Fair

I was able to drag Joel away from the house for a while so we could all go and visit the LA County Fair last night. I know it was the last thing he wanted to do after replacing roof caps on our home (a requirement in order to sell the house). But he was a good sport and all in all, I think he was glad for the family time. Both Hannah and Makaela were really good. It was so fun to see Hannah get so excited about riding the rides. After each one, she would spot the next ride she wanted to go on and squeal, "Ooooh I want to go on THAT one!" We asked if she wanted to go on the small Ferris Wheel, but she said no to that. Poor thing inherited my fear of heights.

She even played that little game where you throw ping pong balls into floating cups and won a prize. Clearly the prizes leave something to be desired. C'mon! A snake or an apple?! Fortunately, she picked the apple. I hate snakes too. Regardless, it will be our Goodwill pile tomorrow. :)
I will say this. The fair aint cheap! $17 each to get in (kids were free). $0.50 a ride ticket, but even the smallest rides were 6 tickets. And Joel or I went on most of them with Hannah so it was double. Frankly, the prices were ridiculous. We took it in stride though because it is rare we get out and do things this big as a family. Haven't attempted Disneyland yet -- at least you don't have to buy tickets in addition to your admission there!

Last night for sure showed us that Hannah is really growing up. She walked the entire way. And was more than willing to walk without holding our hands. I tell you that girl would walk a mile before she looked back to see if we had followed. She went on a couple of rides alone. The thing that made this most evident to me though was when we were in the Winter Wonderland building where they have some snow. In here was a little hill where you could grab a sled from the bottom and then climb up and slide down the hill. Joel helped her get the sled the first time. They climbed up. I think he was ready to sit down and go with her, but she saw another girl a little older than her, slide down belly first. So naturally, Hannah did it too. Without Daddy. I couldn't believe it!!! Head first, down the hill, with the biggest smile in the world like it was no big deal. She's not even 3 yet. And as if that weren't proof enough that she's getting older, she began to grab the sled on her own, carry it on top of her head all the way up the stairs and slide down the hill completely on her own.

Oh my gosh! Where did my baby go? Joel was teasing saying she doesn't need him anymore. I told him she'll always need him. I still need my daddy.

Sidenote: Supposedly our house is still being bought by the buyers but now they are wanting to push escrow back an additional 20 days. After they were the ones who requested a 30 day escrow. Making us nervous. If this falls through, we're stuck with an empty house (all stuff in storage) and at a terrible time to sell -- holidays! Fingers crossed this will go through. October 15th is now the date.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Sneak Peek

So I got invited to be a part of this really cool Yahoo Group where the group administrator decided to do a journal swap. And so I have created my first swap item ever. It was a lot of fun. Basically we had free reign to do whatever we wanted so I used a line of paper from S.E.I. Hopefully my girl will like it. I can't post the picture of the finished product yet because I want the recipient to get to see it first, but here's a little snipet.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Slowly but surely ...

... we are getting there. Just a quick post to say I am still alive. Trying to get things into boxed in some sort of order so unpacking won't be as HORRIBLE as packing it is. Who would have thought in just 5 years we could accumulate so much stuff? We're down to 10 days til we need to be out. Joel tells me we may need another storage unit! Still not looking for a new house yet. I am letting hubby take the lead on that one and I just know he's afraid of jinxing the deal. Part of me is worried we'll be at my dad's place far longer than I can imagine but then I just tell myself to think of the money we'll be saving in mortgage payments. However, I don't want to think about what our new one will be when we finally do get there.

Hope everyone has a great week!

Monday, September 8, 2008

Happy Birthday To Me

As of right this second, there are 54 minutes left of my birthday. For the most part it was a normal day. I am trying to get busy packing up this house. I'm not going nearly fast enough. Joel started his new job today so that was a big change for him. He called at one point to ask for some info and I begged, "Can we just go to dinner?" Not so much because it was my birthday but because I didn't want to think about what to make for dinner. He surprised me by saying my sister was scheduled to be at our house at 5:30 so we could go out to dinner kid-free. Woo hoo!!!!!! We went to the new Yardhouse in Chino Hills and enjoyed a relaxing meal. Then we came home and Joel made me a birthday cake. Here it is.

We have joked about this for quite some time. Twinkies and Hostess Cupcakes. I can't complain. It was pretty good. Hannah was a good helper and assisted in blowing out the candles.

I also got the 4th season of The Office. Oh my gosh! This show is so darn funny. You must check it out if you haven't seen it. I think you can watch episodes of it on

Friday, September 5, 2008

Keep Rollin Rollin Rollin

Who sings that song? Or should I say screams that song? You know, that heavy metal, head banging one?

Makaela has rolled over. This is not the picture of the first time but it's her happiest time. She's been strong since day 1 so the fact that she can hold her head up and look around once she gets on her tummy is not surprising. Most times she gets really frustrated. But on this day, she was happy watching me walk around doing my thing for quite a while. Pretty soon she'll be crawling and I will be in a whole new hell. Keeping those eyes peeled for little things on the ground; making sure cords are out of reach; corners padded; rooms gated off. Too bad the Olympics aren't next year. I could probably be a decent hurdler by then.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Good to be back?

I got back yesterday from a scrap weekend. Some friends of mine from the scrapbooking store rented a cabin in the mountains for the weekend. It was such a great time! This place is set up for scrappers. It sleeps 12 people (only 10 of us went) and has a pretty nice sized scrap room. For a small extra fee, the owner will make all your meals for the weekend.

I brought up so much stuff and actually used a lot of it. I feel like I got a lot done, though not as much as I had hoped. We all stayed up late, watched chick flick after chick flick, chatted, and ate way too much food. It was great! And the best part was I could leave my scrap stuff out without fear of the kiddos getting into it and I didn't have to worry about other tasks such as preparing dinner, changing diapers, doing laundry, etc. I feel a little guilty admitting I enjoyed myself as much as I did. Of course I missed my babes and am happy to be home, but those selfish few days I took are just what I needed. Here's some pics of what I accomplished. Finally proof that I do indeed scrapbook!!!!

This one is showcasing Makaela's furious temper. She gets this from me. In our family, it's called the Kemper Temper. Kemp is my maiden name.

This one shows off Hannah's silly personality. It's hard to tell in the picture but both pages are backed by acetate, hence the floating look.

Makaela's binky. I still need to do a page showing the pile of all the other pacifiers I tried before coming across this Soothie one. Thank goodness she'll take it. I would die without it.

My two precious girls together. I love this paper. I got it from Stampin Up.

Hannah will officially kill me someday for this layout. But Joel captured the picture and I just had to do something with it. My creative daugher pulled her Barbie Powerwheels car (didn't you always want one of those?) up behind her potty seat so she could lean back on it. Then she gathered a bunch of books and her water cup and sat down to do her business. The journaling reads: "every man's dream; a reclining toilet; good reading material; a cold beverage; comfort of your own room"

But hopefully she'll forgive me after seeing this layout. That's a Technique Tuesday frame I have been dying to use ever since I went to CHA Anaheim earlier this year and saw a layout with these things.

Little Makaela when she's not mad.

Hannah and her "princess hair" ... our trial run for Uncle D's wedding. She was a flower girl.

Another great shot of Hannah up at Lola and Papa's house. It discusses her LOVE of kitties. I used these doodling templates called Scribbles. I really liked this and will need to pick up some of my own. Thanks Lizette for sharing.