Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Look Who's Back Home. . .

That's right - my D-200 is back home safe and sound where she belongs! It was after 7:30 when I got home with her, but I still managed a couple of shots with her. It is late and I am beat - so I will say goodnight - just had to share my Happy news. It feels so good to have her back home!!!

This same photo, only in B&W is posted on my Photography Blog

Monday, June 16, 2008

Who Was Driving That Truck. . .

That ran over me several times last night???

WOW! I hate waking up feeling like that is what happened to me in my sleep! I am so achey and tired today. As I said on Saturday, we had Monkey overnight. She was so sweet all night, but unfortunately she woke up about 12:30am with a terrible tummy ache and us two girls were up until 3:30am! Once I got her back to bed and things cleaned up I went to bed. Guess who woke back up at 6:00am? That's right, my little Monkey! I can see now why God has 20 year olds having babies, not 40 year olds (well, anyways for the most part).

Sunday was a full day too. The kids came out to spend Father's Day. We spent a lot of time at the pool (did I mention it was 111 degrees outside?) and we BBQ'd steaks (boy were they good!). Bryanna went through my little cookbook that I made for us and picked out a cake she wanted me to make for her. I got that all made after they left , cleaned up the kitchen and did some other putzing around and finally got into bed at 12:30.

I have a big list of "TO-DO" items today - we will see if this "old lady" gets any of them done!
So how was your weekend? Did you guys do anything wonderful?

Saturday, June 14, 2008

More Time. . .

We have Monkey over night tonight, while her parents have a "grown-up" night. She got here shortly after Gary got home from work and she was all his from the time she got here. He played with her as her worked on the computer. Then he serenaded her with his guitar. After that it was cartoons on the couch. Then there was the BIG announcement. . . "Monkey and I are going to the pool so get her a swimsuit". I got her all ready and handed him the keys to my car and off they went - just the two of them! Gary has never had her alone so I wondered how long he would last with her at the pool alone. But they were gone for well over an hour. Mom was nervous as he left with Monkey and asked if I thought he would be okay with her? I simply replied "he never killed either one of our children".

When they came home he sat on the floor with her and read stories and played with toys. I was in heaven watching them! The only bad part of it all was that my camera is in the shop! After dinner they played some more until they were both beat. As I type this now, they are both in my bedroom sound asleep.

As I watched them together today I couldn't help but think of how my Doodle loved Bryanna and how they loved their time together. She was truly the light of his life those last few years, and she absolutely adored him!

All of this got me thinking and I decided I wanted to celebrate my Doodle and Father's Day a little early this year. After my Doodle died I would always do something special for myself sometime the week of Father's Day. Once I started Scrapbooking, I always made a special layout about him. It was my way of spending time with him again, and it always made me feel good. I didn't do anything last year since we had just moved into the new house and we were preparing for Monkey's birth. And this year I didn't do it again because I was just too busy. So tonight I am going to post a book I made a couple of years ago about him for a design team assignment. I hope you will enjoy it, and as you look at the pages and read the words I hope you will make good use of the time you have with your Father if he is still with you. And if he is not I hope it will cause you to reflect and remember the times you spent together.

Happy Father's Day Doodle - this is for you. . . .

Opening Page Journaling:
If granted only one wish, I know the wish I would make. It would not be for money or fame, or any other "thing". It would simply be for more time! More time with you! More time to learn. More time to laugh. More time to Play. More time to sit. More time to talk. More time to dream. More time to show you how much I love you! More time to experience YOUR love! More time with YOU is the only thing I would wish for!
Journaling on 3 small tags (right):
How I loved, and now miss your big brown eyes! I want to see them look at me just one more time! - Your smile still warms my soul. I love the way you smiled with your whole face. - There is not enough time in eternity to make me grow tired of seeing the twinkle in your eyes or your smile!

Journaling for “If I had only known” (left): If I had known on this day that I only had three more months with you, I wouldn't have wasted a moment! If I had known this would be the last photograph that would ever be taken of you I wouldn't have stopped shooting! I knew how sick you were, and had been for years. Yet, I always thought there would be a tomorrow. And there is, it's just emptier without you! I wish I would have known that day, that time was NOT on my side!
Journaling for “Waiting for the phone to ring” (right): For months after you died, each time the phone rang in the morning I thought it was going to be you! I cannot tell you how many times I picked the phone up to call you, even dialing sometimes. We talked every morning and I loved our morning chats. Fourteen years later I still wish the phone would ring just one more time, and that it would be you! I have so much to tell you. I want so much to hear your voice again! I wish I could have five more minutes on the phone with you!
Journaling for “I would never complain again” (left): If I could hear you tinkle the ice in your empty glass just one more time! That was your signal that your glass was empty and you needed more. Some days that drove me crazy, thinking you could get up yourself to fill your glass. But today it would be music to my ears! I would love to fulfill all of your odd requests just one more time. Things like 3 peanut butter & butter sandwiches, open faced, with the butter on top. Cheese and crackers, with it all laid out in a neat little circle. I would gladly do this & more without complaining!
Journaling for “The Benevolent King Sitting on his throne” (right): Always the "King" of our castle, you were a kind and fair ruler. This leather chair was your throne, the place in which you surveyed all that happened. Where you read the paper, watched TV, talked with the family, ate your lunch, and napped during football games.
These are the things that happen in "Dad's Chairs" all over the country. But something special happened here too. . .this is where you allowed me to curl up in your lap when I was tired or just feeling "little". This is where you held me on your lap and in your arms and tickled me and told me stories, even after I was a grown woman! This is where you rocked your grandchildren, and sang them songs. This is where you really "lived“, where you loved us all. I would give almost anything to sit on your lap, and in your arms, on your throne just once more!

Journaling for “One more ride in the Doodle-Mobile” (left): How I wish there was one more ride in the Doodle-Mobile for you. Your cars were always such a big part of you! Always a BIG, American made, luxury car. Always a BIG, V-8 engine that had a quiet, powerful roar, much like you did. What I wouldn't give to hear that beast pull up in the driveway at night after work again. Or to sit on the fence at the corner and wait for you to pull into our neighborhood and ride me home on that hot hood! I would love to see that "DOODLE" license plate on the back of a car parked out front just once more!

Journaling for “Building Memories” (right): I think I was born with a hammer in my hands. I cannot think of a time in my life when I didn't own a hammer of my very own. I remember being little and as you worked on projects you would give me scraps and teach me to drive nails. As I got older I used those scraps and nails to build tables for my Barbies. As I got even older I helped you hang drywall and do other things I wasn't really interested in, except for the fact that I got to be with you. As my wedding gift, you bought me a tool caddy, with a brand new "Marta-sized" hammer and other essential tools. You taught me to build a lot of things, including memories!

Journaling for “Wish for another year” (left): Fifty Six years was NOT long enough for you! Thirty Two years was NOT long enough for Mom! And Twenty Seven years was definitely NOT long enough for me! I wish I could celebrate another birthday with you, watching you blow out candles and opening presents. Instead, I celebrate your birthday alone in my scraproom, creating a layout for you and journaling about you. It is how I spend this day with you now.

Journaling for “All I want for Christmas” (right):
1. To hear you bellow "BA HUM BUG".
2. To hear you sing "All I want for Christmas is my two front teeth".
3. To go pick out the tree with you.
4. To have you home for Christmas one more time!

Journaling for “Butterfly Kisses” (left): “But I'll always remember every hug in the morning, and butterfly kisses at night!” And I will always wish for one more of each.
I am so glad the photographer at my wedding took this picture of us 21 years ago. We were always openly affectionate with each other, kissing, holding hands, walking arm in arm. We never said hello or goodbye to each other without a kiss or at least a hug, until our final good-bye. I wish I could have given you that last kiss!

Journaling for “Pipe Dreams” (right): I still remember your pipe tobacco and it's smell. How I would love to get one more bowl filled and tamped and ready for you to smoke. How I would love to smell that sweet smell once more. One day, shortly after you died, I went to Stags tobacconists and bought just a small bag of Mouton Cadet tobacco, and just smelled it. That was 14 years ago, and to this day that little bag is still in my night stand. Occasionally still, I will get it out and just smell it - smell you - and I remember. I remember it all.

Journaling for “A Time to reap” (left): You would not believe our yard now! The weeds and dead grass have been replaced with green grass, trees, and flowers. It is the prettiest yard on the street now! I think of your perfectly manicured lawn as I look at it. now. I think of the hours we spent on Monday afternoons pulling weeds, always getting the roots! I remember hating pulling those weeds. But, I would treasure an afternoon full of weed pulling with you again now!
Journaling on the 2 small tags (right): I wish there would have been time for you to teach my girls how to love flowers the way you taught me to!
I wish you could see all of the callas growing in my yard! Each Spring when I walk out my front door I think of you.
Journaling for “Following in our Footsteps” (left): This could be us, a bearded Father, walking on the beach with his thin, long-legged daughter. But it is not, it is my husband and my daughter. When I see them on the beach together I am transported back to another time. A time when it was you and I walking the beach. Sometimes talking, sometimes quietly strolling, holding hands. Each summer vacation we walked the beach first thing each morning and last thing each night. Sadly, after that many walks there are no pictures of us. But I have made sure that Lizzy will have proof of her walks with her Father on the beach.

Journaling for “You held the stars in your hands” (right): I thought you knew everything! I remember on some of those walks on the beach we would search out tidepools. You knew every creature by name. You knew what they ate, how they reproduced and what their purpose was in the grand scheme of things. You made me love the creatures of the ocean so much that I planned to go to Scripps to study and get my degree in oceanography. Most children couldn't spell the word, let alone have a goal to be one! You taught me many things, one of which was I could be or do anything I set my mind to. I wish you were here to tell me that again!

Journaling for “She was always your girl” (left): From the day I brought Bryanna home, she was always "your girl". You were the first Father figure in her life. You loved her so completely and without reservation. I have come to realize why that is. . . She is just like Mom! You died too soon, you missed too much. You should have been here when she turned nine, got her braces, learned to drive, graduated from high school. You should be here to meet her for lunch at the Hyatt, like when she was little. She sees it everyday from her office window now.

Journaling for “Now she is his bride” (right): You should have been here to see her fall in love, and to watch her walk down the isle! You should just be here!

Journaling for “No One sees it” (left): You were Doo-Wa to Lizzy, and she loved you. But because she was only two when you died she really didn't understand what had happened. I explained to her that you had gone to heaven to live with Jesus, and that seemed to satisfy her. But for months and months after you died she insisted that before bed every night that we take her outside. She would look into the night sky for the brightest star, that bright star was you! She would yell out "goodnight Doo-Wa, I love you" And if the star twinkled she would tell us you were waving to her. I don't know how she came up with all of this. It must have been because of all the nights you took her out to look at the stars. She could have learned so much from you!

Journaling for “Except for ME” (right): I wish there would have been more time! I wish you could see her now, she is tall and thin and long legged just like you and I. No one sees it in her except me, but when I look at her I see you! I see you in her body shape, in the hair on her arms, in her wit and intelligence. And if she didn't have blue eyes, I would swear they were yours. When you look at these pictures, I see your eyes and your mouth on both faces! Even though you didn't get to spend much time with her, I think she picked up a lot of your traits. It is a blessing for me to see so much of you in her!

Journaling for “All I really want is. . .more TIME” (right): The human spirit is an amazing thing. It can find a way to make almost anything a reality if you want it bad enough. On those days when I truly need to be with you - I find a way. Sometimes I find a quiet place to sit and I just think about you and I allow my memory to take me to you. Somedays, I pull out your things and I just look at them, I touch them, I smell them, I let all of my senses take me to you. There are times when I pull out pictures and I create layouts with lengthy journaling all about you, and I allow my heart to take me to you. There are some days though, when my memory is not strong enough, my senses are too weak, and my heart to weary to get to you. On these days my spirit takes me to you. I find you in my dreams. Here I get to be with you in the here and now, not just in a memory from the past. This how I get to still spend precious TIME with you Doodle, it is not perfect, but it is good enough!

Journaling for Final page (left): You and Mom taught me the value of TIME as I grew up. I remember you telling me that TIME was one of those things that you only got so much of, you could never buy or make more. That TIME was too valuable to waste. I thought I had learned that lesson well as a girl. But as a woman I have really learned the true value and power that TIME holds. It is when there is NO more TIME to be had with someone that you love, that you realize how important every second is. No amount of wishing will ever give me more TIME with you on this earth. But I am assured of an eternity with you once I leave this earth for our true home. I look forward to that day, but I wont waste a moment of TIME while I am still here!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Lights. . .Camera. . .Action. . .

Well, my camera is in the shop so I have no new photos to share with you. But I decided I would share a couple of home movies of my favorite "Star" with you all tonight.

The 1st one is a instructional video on what to do with your leftover scrapbooking stickers. . .

This next one is just for fun - I know you will enjoy the snappy tune that goes along with it. . .

I hope you are all having a great week!

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Catch-up Time. . .

WOW! Can you believe how long it has been since I posted to my blog? Where has the time gone? What have you been up to? I personally have been spending lots of time with Monkey and also in my studio. And I have totally enjoyed both!

So, tonight I will share a bunch of pictures with you so you can see what I have been up to. Remember that you can click on the pictures to see them bigger.

Let’s start off with Monkey. . .
I can barely believe it but, she turned 10 months old this week! Monday the 2nd was her “month-day”. Only 2 more months until she will be ONE! She is ridiculously fun to spend time with. She is so active and mobile now. And even though she is not talking yet she is very vocal! Bryanna has taught her to growl and it is the funniest thing I have ever seen a baby do. She is standing on her own now and even took 2 steps this week. Although as soon as she realized what she did she sat down right away and had the most shocked look on her face.

She is also learning how to show her affections now without being prompted. OMGoodness - it is incredible!!!! The other day we were playing on the floor and she was playing with her toys a little ways away from me, when all of a sudden she put her toy down and crawled over to me, pulled herself up on me and threw her arms around me and hugged me so tight and gave me one of those really wet, open mouth kisses that babies give. I tell you I could not control myself! I was reduced to tears immediately. This was the first time she had ever initiated such affection.

Thursday we did a little shopping together, it was time to get her monthly monkey. The monkey we got her is as big as her! And you should have seen her in the cart at Babies-R-Us. She just loved on that monkey, kissing and hugging it and laughing so loud. This monkey is called “Mr Big”. I name them all and lately I have gotten hooked on Sex in the City with Bryanna and Lizzy, and so it just seemed right somehow.

In August, I am taking Bryanna, Lizzy and Monkey to Disneyland for Monkey’s 1st birthday. I have not been there in years and it is B&L’s favorite place on earth. We are meeting Gary & Darwin in San Diego a couple of days later to go to the beach etc. I cannot wait to get pictures of my fat, little Monkey in her swimsuit on the beach! But the other day I decided I needed to make a little autograph book for us to take to Disneyland. As usual, my simple idea got a little out of control. I ended up making this little purse album instead. . .

I really think it is very cute, and I did manage to add a little autograph tag book to it. So now I am all set when we get back - I will be able to just add our photos from Disney to it. It has chipboard pages and even a “page” that is an envelope to hold tickets etc. I made the purse it’s self out of board book, and used a pair of 7 Gypsies handles.

A couple of days later I got this idea for a little board book. I wasn’t sure if my idea would work out or not so I made a little prototype. And guess what? It did work! I just love it when that happens! I made it out of scraps of book board and papers that I had in my stash. I did not make it with a purpose, just to see if my idea would work. So here is my prototype. . .

Since this one worked out so well I decided to make another one a little bit bigger. And I also wanted to see if the parent sheets of art paper would work as well or better than the scrapbook paper I used for the shoe book. Yep, it was a winner too! I even did a little bit of stamping in this one. I am liking using my stamps, something I have not really done in several years. I just love the feel of this book in my hands. I love the book board pages, they just really give the book such substance.

Today I ran down to the Creative Quest and cut a bit more book board for some other projects I have planed. I can’t wait to get started on them! One of them is a note book of sorts for Bryanna. We found some beautiful Paris parent sheets the other day at Papyrus. The paper is very “Bryanna”.

Tomorrow is going to be a sad day for me. I am putting my beloved camera in the shop for a good cleaning and tune-up. I will be without it for a couple of weeks! I just don’t know what I will do without it? I was going to take it in on Friday and just didn’t make it down there. When I woke up on Friday morning I looked out in my back yard and the Texas sage was just exploding with color!!! I had to run in grab my camera and shoot a few pictures.

But now it is all packed up and ready to go to the shop in the morning. I will hate being without it, but as much as it get used it deserves a little TLC from the professionals. Now it will be in great shape for our birthday trip to California in August.

Well, I believe I have caught you all up on the highlights of what has been going on in my world. I hope you have been spending your time with people you love and doing things you love!!!!