Thursday, December 25, 2008

Yep! Santa came to our house!!!

Here's the proof!!!

I got a little help capturing this photo from

If you're reading this, Merry Christmas from all of us!!!!

Saturday, November 01, 2008

My Pirates

I know I am quite prejudiced about these two, but aren't they just the cutest little pair of pirates ever???

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Happy New Year!

LOL! That's kind of how I feel. Working in tax, I've been totally engrossed in last year trying to get all those 2007 tax returns on extension filed. Now that they are finished, I get to have my own little celebration to finally close the book on 2007!!

Sorry for ignoring the blog for so long. It's just been terribly busy getting those tax returns done, helping Clark celebrate his 3rd birthday, and trying to keep everything at home running as smoothly as possible. Addison's school has Fall Break on Thursday and Friday, so I'm taking a couple of much-needed days off to be with her and catch up on a few things around the house. I hoping to find a little time to catch up around blogland too!!

Saturday, September 06, 2008

A Thankful Reflection

Goodness knows I really shouldn't be taking the time to blog tonight. I'm way behind on emails and blog comments because I'm trying to stay OFF the computer and get some neglected tasks handled. But since this is my outlet for recording my thoughts about the day, I just couldn't let this day end without an entry.

I find it really sad that I can go for days (or even weeks) going through the motions of life without stopping to really appreciate all that we have been blessed with. You know what I mean? Juggling schedules, finding work/home balance, time is short, the "to-do's" are always longer than there are hours in the day? For some reason, today I am just overwhelmed with all the blessings in my life and a genuine appreciation for all the things I in no way deserve. I know there are many that haven't even crossed my mind today, but here are a few:

1. So thankful for modern medicine and the power of healing. One year ago today, I wrenched a disc that had been giving me fits for months. I would spend the next 10 days in bed waiting for surgery --- even strong pain meds gave little relief during that time. I'm thankful today to be *mostly* pain free and not have to explain to a two-year old that I can't pick him up!

2. So thankful that even in today's labor market, my husband is starting a new job on Monday after more than 10 years of self-employment. It's tough out there. Everywhere he looked, they are getting so many applicants for each job it's hard to be THE ONE that stands out and gets hired.

3. So thankful for our new home. When you get to be as old as we are, you know exactly what features you're looking for if you're going to go to all the trouble of moving. This house had everything on our "must-have" list (even if alot of them need repairing or updating) plus a few more.

When we would talk about finding a new house, Addison would always say she wanted a creek. Can you imagine how excited we were, after we had already bought the house, to find out there is a creek just behind the treeline in the backyard? It's been mostly dried up this summer, but the Gustav remnants made for a little wading fun today!

4. So thankful for my two beautiful, healthy and amazing children. I had read the statistics on having kids late in life, and they're not very encouraging if you're one of those women of *advanced maternal age*. I know I'm so blessed to have these two considering we didn't even start trying until I was 39! They amaze me every day with their love for life and learning. Tonight as I'm snuggling Clark before bed, he blurts out, "Be ye kind one to another!" I had no idea he was already memorizing Bible verses at preschool...and he got this one down pat.

I know there are so many more....but the pillows are calling. Just remind me next time I start whining of all I have to be thankful for, okay?

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Friday Sketchers #17

Sigh! I've been needing to make cards all week, but life seems to be moving at warp speed. Glad I was at least able to use Friday Sketchers #17 before it turns to the next Friday (at least here in the US). Sympathy cards are always so hard for me, and I needed to send two this week!!! Picking the right image, the right colors, the right papers. I wanted to use my Hydrangea Vase image and sympathy sentiment from Treehouse Stamps. Finally I found this paper from Fancy Pants that seemed to work. I liked the image and paper so much, I made another one. And I even have one more image already colored. Maybe I can actually get one card in my stash, so the next time there is a need I won't have to go through this process again!

I'll leave you with a picture of a little guy visiting by our back step yesterday.

Monday, September 01, 2008

My Wish

Isn't is funny how we find our inspiration? After reading (and listening to) Angela's blog entry yesterday morning, I was so compelled to get this picture scrapped. I used Stuck Sketch #53 and pp by Rhonna Farrer. Even after listening to these words practice after practice, I still get teary-eyed when I hear this song. I hope you have a minute to listen to the words...then go hug your little ones or scrap a layout letting them know your wishes for them!

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Why I Grocery Game!

I've been playing the Grocery Game for over 3 years now! When life gets too crazy, I miss a few weeks here and there. But today's trip to Harris Teeter proves why I stick with it.

Including the must-have today 3.99 Oxyclean (no sale/no coupon), the total for all this was only $11.44 plus tax!

If you ever decide to give the Grocery Game a try, I'd love for you to use me as a referral. My email is: mybackporch at gmail dot com.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

CPS #79

Another busy week without much to share here! Everything is good, just busy...and about to get busier since Addison's dance classes and Wednesday night Bible classes for the kids resume after Labor Day. I guess we have this long weekend to enjoy a few more days without the full schedule.

I did sit down at my craft table tonight (even though there is only about a 12-inch square area that is usable at the moment) and played with some Tinkering Ink goodies that came in the mail this week. This card is for CPS Sketch #79. There's really not much to it. The paper is Tinkering Ink, and the rub-on is American Crafts. Such an easy-peasy card. I'm hoping the striking color combo makes it look like a little more work went into it than really did.

Thanks for dropping by. Have a wonderful Labor Day weekend!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

This is so fun!

I saw this link to Yearbook Yourself on Julie Campbell's blog and just had to try it for myself!

It's so fun to see what you might have looked like back in the day. LOL I think it's a very realistic projection if I had been having yearbook pics taken in any of these years.

How about 1962?

Or 1972?

In fact, I'm quite sure that I have a few from 1990 that look exactly like this!

If you try it yourself and post them, I'd love to see a link. I think these are hilarious!

Friday, August 22, 2008

CPS #78 and Pamela is a Maniac!

I finally got around to this week's sketch on the Card Positioning Systems blog. Stamps are SU Fabulous Flowers, patterned paper by Prima, and some pink and fruit punch Stickles. This one was made for a co-worker who is moving away. I hope she likes it.

Pamela has ANOTHER awesome giveaway on her blog today! Check it out HERE!!!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Check out this giveaway!

While I'm being busy ignoring the blog (and many of yours too *sad face*), check out this great giveaway! Pamela is giving away an entire scrapbooking kit!!!

Hurry! Go!

And I promise to catch up this weekend.

Monday, August 18, 2008

SOS Mystery Envelope LO

Last month, I signed up for the mystery envelope challenge on the Sisterhood of Scrap blog. It was a fun challenge to take minimal supplies and use all of them for a layout. In addition to what I received in the mail, I added a sheet of white 12x12 cardstock and some stamping for my title. (I think you can tell I'm way out of practice with the wood mounted stamps, huh?)

You can check out what the other gals did with the same supplies HERE!

And believe it or not, I really am up this early blogging. Today is Addison's first day to ride the bus the we have to get everyone ready quite a bit earlier than we did last week! I've got the camera ready. Hoping I get some great pics to share!!!

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Using My Stash

The August challenge at Use Your Stash is to use patterned paper. I found a sketch from Sketch It Out and dug into my stash of Dream Street papers. No cardstock on this layout, but I cut into 5 different patterned papers. Yippee! One more LO ready for Sara's album.

Use Your Stash is giving away an awesome prize for taking their August challenge. But you only have until August 20 to go check it out quick!!

52 Sketches #32 and some {SAS}sy Scrapping!

What a bad blogger I've been! We've been working on getting back in our school routine this week. It's going great! But definitely an adjustment after the lazy days of summer.

I did find time last night to work with Sketch #32 at 52 Sketches...52 Weeks.

I'll be spending what spare time I can find this weekend trying to finish up the gift album since my niece leaves for college in just a few more days. I found out about an online crop at Scrap Attack Scrapbooking.

What a friendly bunch of scrappers! And some great challenges (and awesome prizes) to keep me motivated! You should come join in the fun on the message board! Here's another LO I did for a challenge over there.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

First Day First Grade!

WOW! Summer vacation sure has flown by! I guess that happens especially when you move just a couple of days after the last day of class in May. Today was the first day at Addison's new school. She was a little apprehensive about starting at a new place and making new friends, but she is very happy that her new school doesn't have a uniform dress code. Mom, on the other hand, is not so happy about it. That standard school attire was a sure way to avoid the arguments over her fashion choices.

We got there a little early so she and Clark had time to check out this awesome tree on the school yard. On the way inside, we had seen a couple of familiar faces. I'm hoping she felt more at ease by the the time we got to her classroom. And you just gotta love the snaggle tooth smile. Here's wishing you a terrific first grade year my dear!!!

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Another Double Challenge

Korin of Sweet 'n Sassy Stamps provided the sketch and the prize for this week's challenge at the Dutch Dare Challenge blog. I love this sketch. I decided to use a stamped image of Sweet Gretchen that Korin had sent along with my last order. Since the theme of the week on the Stamp Something blog is Thank You's, I used a TAC sentiment and made a Thank You card. Thank You cards are something I never seem to have enough of.

Sorry for the lousy picture. The lighting is terrible in here at night, but I knew this card would not scan well either.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Challenge(s) Card

This card was made with two challenges in mind. This week, the theme at Cute Card Thursday is something "In The House". Do you realize how hard it is to find a stamp of something INSIDE the house? I used this week's sketch from Friday sketchers and some older SU stamps (I think these were in a hostess set??). The paper is all Basic Grey Infuse. It's nice to have a belated birthday card in the stash. Goodness knows it won't be long before I forget someone's birthday. I couldn't even remember to take a picture of this card during daylight hours today, so I had to resort to the scanner.

Sunday, August 03, 2008

CPS #76

This morning I was cleaning off my table from the past few days of layouts. I found these American Crafts paper scraps and thought they'd work perfectly for CPS Sketch #76. Luckily I had already hand-cut the flower out so the card came together very quickly, and I can always use some fun cards to send "just-because!"

Okay...gotta get moving! It needs to be a busy day here.

Saturday, August 02, 2008

Magic - 52 Sketches #29

I've been cropping with the gals at Sassy Scrappers this weekend. They're having a Tropical Luau Crop with lots of fun challenges. I used a recipe challenge from the crop and Sketch #29 at 52 Sketches...52 Weeks to set the tone for this layout. Hearts are clear embosssed on the black background cardstock. The patterned paper and journaling card are by Jenni Bowlin. To achieve the large scallop effect, I cut circles and then cut them in half. It's all pulled together with some ribbon and lace and a few Heidi Swapp jewels. I made this one for my niece's gift album, but I like it so much I think I need to replicate it for our wedding album!

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Li'l Baby - 52 Sketches #30

Using more than two or three photos on a page always befuddles me. But I need to get through this stack of pics for that gift album, so I was quite excited when a couple of five-photo sketches came up on the 52 Sketches...52 Weeks blog a couple of days ago! This layout is for sketch #30. Cardstock is Bazzill. The patterned paper and thickers are from American Crafts.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

This is my chance to catch up!!

My Google Reader is loaded with stamping blogs with a few scrapbook and home-ec type blogs thrown in for good measure. At last count, I think I was close to 2000 unread posts.

Thank heavens for the SU convention!! I'm guessing this week is my chance to catch up and get that Reader cleared out. Wish me luck. :)

Sunday, July 27, 2008

It's been a Scrappy Weekend!

I got three more layouts finished for the gift album I'm working on, the altered tin and one card. No wonder my house looks like a bomb went off.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Altered Tooth Fairy Tin

Well...lots of drama and tears also came out with the first tooth this afternoon. Silly tooth has been loose for MONTHS!
You would think I would have had plenty of time to play with an idea that's been floating in my head all that time. However, in typical Rachel fashion, we're getting by with the just-in-time method. Luckily, I was able to quickly put my hands on an old Altoids tin and some epoxy stickers my friend Linda had RAK'd me several months ago. I used some paper from Daisy D's and Dream Street, some misc. ribbon, alpha stickers and ticket, and a poem found through Google.

What's the going rate for the tooth fairy these days anyway???


I actually finished a layout. I'm still trying to get an album done for my niece before she leaves for college in less than 3 weeks now. Thanks to one of the Scrapfest challenges at Creative Scrappers, here's one more page for her album. The old Making Memories eyelet plaque says "A father sees himself in his child's eyes."

Friday, July 25, 2008

If you haven't heard....

20 layout sketches and 5 card sketches! WooHoo! Anyone wanna guess what I'm doing tonight? Well....actually I'm just getting started. We took the kids to see the Wiggles tonight. Clark absolutely LOVED it. Addison had very mixed emotions. She really wanted to enjoy it one minute, but then the "big-girl-I-can't-possibly-still-like-the-Wiggles" side would appear. Anyway, we stopped for a late dinner and now the kids are in bed. So I'm gonna stay up late and scrap!!!

Monday, July 21, 2008

I'm Exhausted

The slightest possibility that extended family might need a place to sleep tonight en route to their vacation destination sent us into a flurry this weekend to deal with the all the boxes in the guest room...the room that can end up being a dungeon for months after a move. I'm happy to say that the boxes are mostly gone, the beds are made, and I would not have been embarrassed to have overnight guests even though it turned out they didn't need to stay here. But I'm tired and the alarm is going to ring way too early tomorrow morning.

The scraproom is coming along slowly but surely. Maybe I should just invite ya'll over to scrap in a week or two. That would be one sure way to make sure all these boxes get unpacked. Right now I've gotten just a tad too comfortable with them stacked out of the way. *sigh* On the bright side, the guest room is ready if we decide to pull a late-nighter! LOL
My husband keeps asking me where all this stuff came from? And how in the world I fit it all in my little 8x8 space at the old house. The sad thing is that I really don't know!!!

Saturday, July 19, 2008


I got tagged this weekby my friend Kris! So here goes:

Each player answers questions about themselves. At the end of the post, the player then tags 5 or 6 people and posts their names, then goes to their blogs and leaves them a comment, letting them know they’ve been tagged. Let the person who tagged you know when you’ve posted your answers.

What were you doing ten years ago?
Hmmmm....Gosh that was before children and scrapbooking? What did I do? Working, settling into married life, and going to alot of sporting events.

5 things on todays "To Do" list
1. Saturday housecleaning stuff
2. Figure out what I'm taking to a pot luck tomorrow
3. Pay bills
4. Work on unpacking more boxes
5. Referee kids

I'm addicted to
The Grocery Game
Mexican food

Things I would do if I were a MILLIONAIRE
Pay off the mortgage.
Worry a little less about funding college and retirement.
Take some awesome family vacations.

Places I have lived
Laurel, DE
Nashville, TN
Brentwood, TN
(I resist change, can you tell???)

And I'm tagging:
Julie S

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Sketches at Creative Scrappers

I finally got around to setting up my little sewing corner today. I think I'm going to love being able to keep my sewing machine out. Hopefully, that means I'll use it more often. Now I just need to find some cute fabric and sew a cover for it! It is taking forever to get this room the way I want it. But progress is progress I suppose.

I'm loving the weekly sketches at Creative Scrappers. For the second week in a row, I finished both the weekly layout sketch and the weekly card sketch. The layout is the cover page in an album I'm making for a gift. The papers are Prima and Daisy D's. I'm still not sure what's going on with the shadows on my scanner. I must have messed up some settings during the move???

For this quickie card, I used some Doodlebug scraps and an AL Rhonna Farrer stamp paper piecing the little guy's wing.

And I'll leave you with a pic of my baby. He was home one day this week with some kind of tummy bug. I was on the phone when I saw him lay down in the family room right in the middle of the floor. By the time I got off my call, he had fallen fast asleep and stayed right there for over two hours. If you know Clark, you KNOW he felt bad to do something like that!!

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Our Creative Corner Sketch

I'm seeing lots of Christmas in July, so I decided to bring out the Christmas papers and stamps too! I've been wanting to try some of the weekly challenges at Our Creative Corner, and finally found some time to work with the sketch for this week. As I was finishing up this card I realized how easy this design would be to mass produce when it comes down to crunch time in mid-December. Someone remind me of that if when I get in a panic five months from now!

Paper - Making Memories, Stamps - CTMH Snowman Holiday, Misc. Ribbon.

Monday, July 07, 2008

Snapfish Deal

I have SO many photos that need to be printed, so I couldn't pass up the latest offer from Snapfish. Use coupon code JUL4PENNY08 and get up to 50 digital prints for a penny each! Even with shipping of $3.44...that's 50 prints for under $4.00!!! A great deal in my book.

Edited to add: This deal is only good through July 12.

Sunday, July 06, 2008

My Day

I read a great quote this morning at the Creative Scrappers Forum....unfortunately it proved to be the story of my day.

"Having one child makes you a parent; having two you are a referee."
~David Frost

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Creative Scrappers Sketch #6

Put on your sunglasses for this bright layout! And I'm not sure what is going on with my scanner, so I'll apologize for the shadows on the scan.

I just discovered the Creative Scrappers blog and forum...and I'm glad I had time to work with this sketch! Check them out. A new sketch goes up every week.

Little Surprises!

After living in the same place for almost 18 years, it's been fun to wait and see what is going to bloom next at our new home. I'm loving this triple daylily.

Friday, July 04, 2008

Happy Fourth!!!

I used stars instead of circles for this card sketch challenge at Creative Scrappers. I just found this site a few days ago after being out of the loop for so long. I'm such a sketch challenge junkie...this place is right up my alley! LOL

I also took some time last night to scrap a layout. You can see it here.

We watched fireworks last night at the local country club. It was nearby, fun, and we were able to meet some more of our new neighbors. But I'm thankful we had a test run. At 9:00 Clark was begging to go home. When that little guy gets tired, he is ready to go to bed NOW! That made it clear that we're going to have to skip out on the festivities in Downtown Nashville tonight. Can you believe the Nashville display is ranked #2 in the nation???

Hope you enjoy your day however you're celebrating our independence!!