Monday, May 25, 2009

Back to Work

Hard to believe the weekend is over already. Time goes by so fast when you're having fun.

We've had absolutely perfect weather for three days. Some people probably think it's been a little cold (my sister included) but I love the temperature in the 70's. This is what spring is all about. As far as I'm concerned, it could stay like this all summer. I'm not very crazy about 90 degrees and humidity.

We spent last week buying our annuals. We usually get most of our annuals at Countryside Greenhouse but Sue really wasn't up for it. We did manage to get to Ludema's, Romence Gardens, Fruitbasket Flowerland and Meijer's to get everything we usually get at Countryside. Over the last three days, I got everything planted and, if I say so myself, all the pots look pretty nice. I still have a couple of empty places but not sure if I'll fill them or not. We've already spent quite a bit on flowers.

Mom visited on Sunday. She loves "Jon & Kate plus 8" so we watched the marathon on TLC most of the afternoon. We had steaks on the grill, along with potatoes and onions in tinfoil packets and the first corn on the cob of the year. She always brings homemade cookies (they have the best chocolate chip cookies at Sunrise). She bought a new hummingbird feeder so we made syrup and I hung it up when I took her home. We've both had problems getting the hummingbirds to come regularly this year so she said she'd call the first time he came.... gee, I haven't heard from her yet!

It was pretty busy at work last week. Our two new projects are kicking off so there's a lot of prep work involved in that. This week starts out with an all day client meeting on Tuesday, which means I have to don my waitress apron since we will be providing both a continental breakfast and lunch for a group of about 15. This type of day always proves to be very tiring because I still have the rest of my job to do as well.

I did post earlier this evening a card for last week's House Mouse #38 challenge. I didn't get it done until today but I did follow the sketch, so decided to post anyway.

Hope everyone had a nice Memorial Day.

Cheers, Judi

House Mouse Monday Challenge #38

I know I'm too late for the House Mouse Monday Challenge #38 but I did finally get my card done so I thought I would post it anyway. The challenge was a sketch and I love doing sketches. I knew what I wanted to do for this challenge but life kept getting in the way.

I was asked to make a retirement card for one of the ladies I work with. After 45 years, she is finally hanging up her typewriter. She loves warm weather and is looking forward to relaxing and spending time at the beach. I thought "In A Nutshell" was perfect. I colored it in the Prismacolor colored pencils, blended with gamsol. All the papers are from DCWV "Citrus" paper pad. I used the standard circle and scallop circle dies from Nestabilities; the ribbon is from a QVC ribbon pack and the charms are from stash. I've also added a touch of Diamond Stickles for a little glitz.

Cheers, Judi

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Penny Black Saturday Challenge #49

It's been a month since I last posted for a challenge. I'm very excited to be back with a card for the Penny Black Saturday Challenge #49. This is a recipe challenge.... 3 flowers, 2 papers and 1 charm/brad.

I used my new PB stamp "Rosy!". I also colored with my new Copics (gonna take some practice). I'm afraid I don't know where the paper came from, just some I've had around for a long time. The flowers are from "Accent Creative Designs" and the gems are from The Paper Studio. I used the Labels Four die by Nestabilities and the Swiss Dots embossing folder by Cuttlebug. The charm and lace are from stash and there's a touch of Diamond Stickles glitter glue.

I know it's been a while but thanks for coming back to take a look. Would love it if you left a comment letting me know you were here.

Cheers, Judi

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Getting Back to Normal

Life is finally settling back into a regular routine. Sue is slowly improving from her hip replacement surgery and the Great Lakes Mega Meet is over, so things should be getting back to normal.

Don't you just love spring. I can't believe how much the trees have changed over the last week. The flowering trees are gorgeous and the grass is green. The spring bulbs and the lilacs are in full bloom, and the trillium and lilies of the valley are coming up. We haven't seen any hummingbirds yet, but there have been a couple of orioles around.

The Great Lakes Mega Meet was wonderful. Barb and I had a great time papercrafting and shopping for three days. We stayed in the same hotel as last year (even though it had changed from Baymont to Holiday Inn Express)... we even had the same room! They had a great breakfast bar: eggs, sausage, cereal, muffins, bagels, juices, yogurt and absolutely wonderful warm cinnamon rolls. Dinners on Thursday and Friday found us at Applebees.

I took seven classes: two cardmaking, two acrylic mini albums, a mini tag album, a mixed media mini album and a 6x6 canvas book. The classes went really well. I actually finished a couple in class but also completed a couple in the hotel room in the evening. I still need to make them my own with my photos and/or embellishments. I even won a couple of prizes which is always fun.

Of course, there is the all-important shopping as well. I tried my darnedest to stimulate the economy. I picked up an assortment of papers and paper packs, a ton of embellishments and a mini album project that Barb and I are going to work on together. But my most important (and most costly) purchase were my Copic markers. Yes, I decided to take the step (actually a giant leap!) into the world of Copics. Now I have to figure out how to use them. I'm hoping to "play" a little this weekend.

It was tough coming back to work after being gone five days. Things were a bit chaotic on Tuesday when I returned. I ended up at the office till almost 6:30. I also found out when I got back that one of the administrative assistants had decided to retire. She's been with the company for 45 years. I was 11 when she started working! This does take a little pressure off the rest of the admin staff though. There is still the possibility of more lay-offs but this should provide the rest of us more work.

Sue is progressing. She is still using a walker but continues with weekly physical therapy and gets up and down the stairs regularly. Her therapist wants her to walk more so she's been circling the main level of the condo. She has no pain in either her right hip or her back, but now her left hip hurts. We may be in for the whole procedure a second time.

Lastly, I had a very pleasant surprise a couple of weeks ago. I found that a card of mine had been published in the June 2009 issue of Crafts 'n Things. I probably sent the card in over a year ago. In fact, it was sent to Rubberstamper, which was bought by Crafts 'n Things. If I remember correctly, the card request was for stamping on photos. I used all Stampscape stamps and a sunset photo I had found at This is my first time published and I'm really quite pleased.

I'm looking forward to getting back into challenges again. I've got all kinds of new stuff to use. And, of course, there are my Copics. Can't wait to give them a try.

Cheers, Judi

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Looking Forward to May

April may only have 30 days, but they were a long 30 days. I see that I never even got my April calendar posted so guess I'll do it here, along with May.

March ended with Sue's hip replacement surgery postponed until Friday, April 17. She's been having trouble maintaining a high enough red blood cell count and her surgeon decided she needed to see a hematologist. After several blood transfusions, she got the okay for her surgery. We had to be at Spectrum at 7:30 a.m. on 4/17, with surgery scheduled for 9:30 a.m. They didn't take her in until almost 10:00 and a procedure that was supposed to take a hour, took over two. When the surgeon came out to talk to me, he indicated that her hip was in much worse shape than he thought so the surgery took much longer. But everything went well and she was in her room about 2 hours later. I stayed with her until 7:00 p.m. It was a very long day.

On Saturday, she had several sessions of physical and occupational therapy and was out of bed to sit in a chair. I spent most of the afternoon and early evening with her. I brought Mom up to see her on Sunday for a couple of hours. Sue still had several therapy sessions and was walking a bit further. We thought she would come home on Monday, but she ended up needing another blood transfusion before they would let her leave.

I finally got her home on Tuesday. Sue's bedroom is in the lower level of our condo but stairs were not an option. So, we moved her into my bedroom where she could easily get to a bathroom and more easily maneuver with her walker. I moved into the spare bedroom so I would be close if she needed any help.

So that's how we spent the last two weeks. We finally moved her to the lower level this morning. I must admit I'm looking forward to sleeping in my own bed again.

While we were getting through all of this, I found out that my hours were being cut at the office from 40 to 32 per week. Instead of laying off one administrative assistant, five of us had our hours reduced. I am now supposed to have Monday's off but, because of everything going on with Sue, I've had to do some trading. I think after next week I should be able to get into a regular routine.

It really is beginning to look like spring. After having 70 degree weather at the beginning of the month, we had 3-4 straight days of rain and then temperatures in the 50's and 60's. The flowering trees have really popped, daffodils, tulips and hyacinths are in full bloom, and the summer birds are returning. In the last three days, both the Orioles and the Rose-Breasted Grosbeaks have been at our feeders. Still waiting for the Hummingbirds. This is absolutely my favorite season. I'm beginning to get that itch to plant some annuals.

Marla and I headed to Arnie's in Greenville last Saturday. They were having a 30% off the entire store sale which you know I can't miss. They have such a great selection of stamping, scrapbooking and papercrafting supplies. I haven't even taken the time to unpack my purchases. Looking forward to the creative juices flowing again.

And speaking of creative juices, Barb and I leave Wednesday night for the Great Lakes Mega Meet in Novi. I've signed up for 7 classes over the three days. I can hardly wait. We always stay at the Baymont Inn and Suites; nice but nothing fancy. And it seems we usually end up eating at Applebees. I'm a little leery of leaving Sue alone for three nights but she assures me she will be fine.

I think this has caught me up. I hope so anyway. I need to start packing my supplies for my classes; I've already made a list of everything I need to take. I don't know if I'll get any challenges done this week but I am looking forward to starting again next week. I can't tell you how much I've missed checking out everyone's blogs and the world of challenges.

Cheers, Judi