Monday, November 29, 2010

Layout - Staying Cool

I just had to make a separate layout for these pictures of Jeremy getting completely soaked in a summer rain! I made these with Studio J so it was fast to pick "water" paper, add the pictures, pick the colour of my embellishments and then journal. I really zoomed in on the pictures (I took the pictures from the doorway of our house so I wouldn't get wet!) which meant that they were slightly blurry when they were printed but not as bad as I feared.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Albion Orchards

 I hadn't explored north of Toronto yet so on the first Monday afternoon that Mom and Dad were visiting we took a drive north to Albion Orchards. when Even though we were too late to pick our own apples, we had a great time exploring the orchard, the gift shop and we did get to pick our own pumpkin! We came home with a few bags full of huge apples (they were the largest apples I've ever eaten), a jug of delicious apple cider, homemade butter tarts, and a pumpkin. The kids had a blast climbing on the bales provided for them, running down the hill, hiding in the trees and checking out the pumpkins. Mom and I decided that we had never seen a 'pumpkin patch' before. We often grew pumpkins in the garden growing up but we had never seen a true pumpkin patch. The vines were all gone but the sight of all the bright orange pumpkins was beautiful. The last of our visit to the orchard is still in my freezer - yummy applesauce made from a bag of 'seconds' that doesn't need any sugar.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Scrapbook layout - Mud-dy!

This is one of the seven Studio J digital layouts I just received in the mail! I am scrapbooking most of 2009 digitally and I had fun with this one. My kids seem to love mixing dirt and water together!
I picked Backwoods as my paper choice, used a basic template Studio J provided, and then added the title, quote, and brackets (they were under "Stickease" and then I rotated and resized them to the size I wanted). One thing I love about digital scrapbooking is always being able to resize what I want - title, picture, embellishments!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Sunday thoughts - Transient vs. Eternal

2 Corinthians 4:18b "For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal."

Pastor Paul, in his sermon on Hebrews 8 today, talked about how the temple in Jerusalem was a shadow or copy of the heavenly temple and so the earthly temple was inferior and the heavenly one is superior. He pointed out that "for the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal." (2 Cor. 4:18b) and how often we reverse the two in our thinking and practice - we think the things of this earth are what is real and the things of heaven are not real.  But in reality the things of this earth are not real - they are transient, temporary, a shadow and will not last and the things of heaven are real - they are eternal, they are the original. Then he asked "What are you living for?"

This hit home for me - what am I living for? It is so easy to be focused on the transient - day to day living, jobs, responsibilities, cares, fun activities etc. However I want to carry these out with my eyes lifted upward and my focus on Jesus  - for He is what is better, eternally better. For He said “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." John 14:6 and “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God." John 3:16-18

So as I ponder this, I think - this is the theoretical - I want to live for Christ - but what is the practical? How can I keep my focus on Jesus during the week, during the mundane and exciting activities of day to day life? What comes to mind is the simple - be in the Word (i.e. read my Bible), pray, listen to Christian music, listen to online sermons, read devotional books, discuss spiritual truths and share with other Christians - and from time spent on these activities my whole life will be affected. Now my challenge is to do these things! Over the years, my time spent on these activities has ebbed and flowed and lately I have been in a dry spell.  But after today's sermon, (and putting these thoughts in writing :) I know I need to once again consciously set aside time in my day to formally focus on Jesus (i.e. such as the above activities) so that I can informally focus on Him the rest of the day!

So now I challenge you - what are you living for?

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Scrapbook layout - Holly

CTMH Paper: Cherry-O paper pack
CTMH Embellishments: Big Pinks flowers, Chocolate polka dot ribbon, Opaque Pearls, chocolate brads
Other: Making Memories rub-ons, unknown metal tags

I made time to scrapbook this week and finally scrapbooked my niece's birth from two years ago! I have to admit it was a fast page though because I used one of my Progressive Pages layouts from this summer. When I looked at Holly's baby pictures I knew that this layout would be perfect for them. When I ran my scrapbook classes in August (just before we moved!) we made Progressive Pages and I sat down with my group to play too!

If you have never heard of Progressive Pages, it is a fun scrapbooking game. You need a group of scrapbookers and everyone picks their own patterned paper and cardstock. Then everyone passes their selections to the left (or right!). That person then adheres one of the patterns to your pages anyway they like. The papers are passed again and another step is done (i.e. add photo mats, add title space, add journaling space, add embellishments etc.) Once your paper has gone around the group once (or twice depending on how many women there are) you have a completed layout just waiting for you to add your pictures! I have played the game with my scrapbook clubs once or twice a year for the last 3 years and everyone has a great time. It can be a little scary working on other pages but once you get in the groove it is a lot of fun. Oh, and I should mention there is a time limit on each step - just to keep everyone moving!

I picked Sweet Leaf green as the base cardstock and chocolate for my photo mats. I picked two patterned papers from the CTMH Cherry-O paper pack and my talented scrapbook club friends did the rest! I did add the Making Memories rub-on words, Opaque pearls and little metal tags myself but that was it.

If you are interested in the instructions I have for Progressive Pages let me know and I can email them to you. I put them together years ago from a short video off the Simple Scrapbooks website.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Scrapbook layout - What a fun day!

This is a digital layout from Studio J using "Tinkerin'" paper. I made three title boxes (I deleted the original title box which you can't edit and added new ones) -  and typed in two of them and added Stickease letters for the word "fun". I find it amazing how 3-D the ribbon can look; sometimes I add real ribbon or other embellishments to the pages after I get them but this one is completely digital.

The pictures are from August 2009 - I am finishing 2008 with classic scrapbooking but most of 2009 will be digital. I am hoping it will help me catch up as well as take advantage of the year membership I purchased (it gives me a deal on the layout price and shipping)!

Friday, November 5, 2010

The Toronto Zoo

Petting a Stingray! Noelle was able to pet a few but Jeremy refused.
 The shark was more elusive but I did get a chance to run my fingers along his back.
 Jeremy loved digging for dinosaurs in the kids' sand pit! There are actually replicas of dinosaur fossils for the kids to find.

 Check out that dimple!
We visited the Toronto Zoo back in September and I just haven't gotten around to writing about it yet! We went as a whole family with Luella the second weekend of September when she visited and then the kids and I visited it again at the end of September. The second time we went to check out the Stingray and Shark exhibit (which was closing October 11) that we didn't have time to see the first time. (We bought a family membership the first time because it is such a better deal).

The Toronto Zoo is one of the biggest zoos in the world and we were really impressed with it. The first time we explored most of the zoo but not all of it! One exciting moment was when a cheetah that the kids were watching from behind glass lunged at the glass repeatedly! It seemed like it was trying to attack them.

The second time the kids and I took our time and visited the Sharks and Stingray exhibit, the Kids Zoo, the Canadian Domain and rode the Zoomobile. The Zoomobile let us see the outside animals from a different angle and we didn't have to walk as far!

There are still a few more places left for us to explore another time though! I hope to visit at least one or two more times in the coming year. Next time we will take with us our "Complete Zoo Adventure" book that I ordered to use for our schooling this year. It looks like an exciting book that contains activities, facts about animals and Scripture to help teach about God's amazing creation.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Back to blogging!

My Mom and Dad were here visiting from Alberta for 11 days so I haven't had much time to email or blog :) We had a great visit with them and it was really special to have them make the effort to come and see us. It was fun showing them around Toronto and southern Ontario. We went to an apple and pumpkin orchard, visited Casa Loma, Niagara Falls, and Humber Bay Park, went out for Dim Sum, celebrated Jeremy and Mom's birthdays and Mom and Dad were able to visit an uncle in Waterloo for 2 days. At this rate I won't run out of topics to blog for a long time!

Scrapbooking Tip - Lining up Acyrlic Stamps!

It is sometimes hard to get a wavy stamp to lay right or a circle stamp to be a perfect circle when using clear acrylic stamps and placing them on a block. The solution is to put the stamp face down on the table so it lays naturally and then lay your block onto the stamp! Now your stamp is its natural shape and you can stamp away! I also use this technique sometimes when I have alphabet letters layed out exactly the way the I want on a page. I just take one of my big blocks (i.e. 2 x 11) or whatever size I need and lay it over the word. Once the letters are stuck on the block I can ink them up and stamp my title!