Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Brennan was able to come visit for the last few days of his Spring Break. He arrived 11 hours after Keaton left. Too bad they couldn't have been here together, though they see each other all of the time in CA, as they only live about 45 minutes apart. I must say that it was nice to have some one-on-one time with my grown-up baby boys!

I love the look on Emma's face in this photo. She literally begged Brennan to throw her up in the air. She has perfected the "little girl squeal!"
Emma really does adore her uncles.
Of course, I needed another photo with my baby boy. Love him!!!
I guess what they say is true: as couples get older, they start to dress alike. Rick and didn't plan it this way, but we both wore our "proud parent" shirts! LOL
Hope your week is off to a fabulous start!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

A Little of This, A Little of That...

Just thought I'd post updates on a few things.

1) My SIL, Lori, is recovering slowly but surely from her skiing accident (broken femur). She will be out of work for at least another month. She was finally able to take a shower the other day, which must have felt heavenly! Please keep praying for her recovery.

2) I shared with you that the son of a high school friend was killed in an auto accident three weeks ago. This Sunday would have been Paul's 19th birthday. I know from experience what a difficult day this will be for Paul's family. Please keep praying for them as well.

3) I finally know what is wrong with my dog, Indy. He has a metabolic disorder which causes the pH in his urine to be way too high, resulting in the stones that were surgically removed from his bladder and urethra. He needs to be on prescription food which my other two dogs cannot eat. Trying to feed them separately is the real challenge! Indy's eyes are also improving thanks to the special eyedrops I have to give him three times each day. Poor puppy!

4) Here's an updated photo of the Monet pattern I'm cross stitching. The top third of the design, the sky, is rolled up in the scroll. I love how the irises are looking! And I love stitching with all of the purples!
5) I've been having esophagus issues again, so it's back to Mass General today to begin another round of tests. Blah. At least Emma and I will have a good excuse to spend all day tomorrow in our jammies watching movies and napping together!

6) Keaton is headed back to CA today while Brennan is headed here for a long weekend. I sure do miss my boys! I'm so thankful that they still want to come home. I pray that never changes.

So...if I don't post anything for a few days, Mom, assume I am getting lots of rest and hanging with Brennan.

Wishing you a happy Thursday!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

My Baby is 21!!!

Happy 21st birthday to my baby boy, Keaton! Here he was one day old...
Here he is 21 years later!
This is his girlfriend, Tina.
And here he is making sily faces with silly Miss Emma!
I love you, Keaton! Happy, happy birthday!!!

Friday, March 18, 2011

Never Too Old for a Tea Party!

As my birthday gift last year, Emma and Brittany invited me to tea. I chose to go The American Girl store, as I knew Emma would love that! Of course, Lucy (Emma's American Girl Bitty Baby) needed a new outfit, which I was delighted to supply! LOL They have special little chairs for the American Girl dolls that attach to the tables. That, next to the cupcakes of course, was Emma's favorite part! I finally got around to scrapping the photos.
(SU Petals and Paisleys DP, Pretty in Pink, and Tempting Turquoise; SU Pretty in Pink Striped Ribbon; PTI Hawaiian Shores buttons; Prima Daisies)

It wasn't a super fancy tea, but it sure was fun. Thank you, girls!

Hope you have a tea-riffic day!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Irish Blessings

Emma has no idea what St. Patrick's Day is, but that didn't stop me from making a cute card for her!
(MFT 4-Leaf Clover; SU So Happy for You; SU In Colors Designer Series Paper, Pear Pizzazz and Daffodil Delights; SU Garden Grren Ink Pad; SU Markers; SU Top Note Die; PTI Snow White Satin Ribbon)

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Author's Visit Follow-up

After my "Author's Visit" to Pedrito's school last week, I made this card to congratulate him on a job well done!
(Verve To the Moon; CTMH Animal Cookies, Tulip, and Dutch Blue; SU Tag Punch; buttons)

I made this card for the three teachers who participated in my visit, along with an autographed book for each of their classes. I still find it quite amusing that my autograph means anything to anyone (expect for retailers when I use my credit card, LOL) , but apparently the kids think it's cool.
(Stamping Bella's Bookwormabella; PTI GUidelines DP, Lavender Moon, and Plum Pudding; PTU Lavender Moon and Plum Pudding Ink; PTI Plum Pudding Saddlestitch Ribbon; PTI Lavender Moon button; PTI Twine; and CTMH Liquid Glass)

Paloma sent me this photo of Pedrito's report:
Hooray for you, Pedrito!!!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Monet's Irises, Phase 1

Last summer, we painted our two-story entry hall (aka foyer, depending on how fancy you want it to sound) a light, creamy yellow. It's pretty, but is in some desperate need of other colors. I found this Scarlet Quince cross stitch pattern of Monet's Irises. I love the purples! This will be perfect for my entry hall!

The best thing about stitching impressionist art is that you can't tell where my stitching mistakes are hidden! The other thing I love about Scarlet Quince patterns is that they don't use fractional stitches or backstitches. This is what I've stitched so far~just the sky.
This pattern uses 123 colors of floss. It has 76,830 stitches, most of them blended (one strand each of two different colors). I am a little more than 25% done, which means that I've stitched about 19,300 stitches! It's a good thing I don't think about that as I work!

Now I get to move on to the really fun part: the purple irises! Yay for purple! LOL

Hope you're having a great day!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Camp Giffy & Papa...

stamp and make cards,
and play with Lucy (including numerous outfit changes).
I didn't get any photos, but he also made Veggie Tales characters out of Play Doh, played games, assembled puzzles, and had a dance party. Yes, he is the best Papa ever!

I got to give Emma a bath. She made herself look like Papa with the bubbles. LOL
It's all good, though~I get to spend all week with Emma, which makes Rick jealous. I'm glad they got to have lots of play time together!

The only other thing we accomplished was buying a new refrigerator, which we hadn't planned on doing. When I was a kid, my parents' appliances seemed to last for 20+ years. These days, you're lucky to get 10 years out of anything. Our house is only nine years old and we have already had to replace the dishwasher two years ago, the washer and dryer last year, and now the fridge. They were supposedly all "high quality" appliances. So much for "high quality." We had repairs done on all of them and at some point we had to decide that it just wasn't worth sinking any more money into fixing them. And, of course, they all cost a fortune to replace! We got one of the "new" styles called a French refridgerator. The bottom third is the freezer and the top two-thrids have side-by-side doors with lots of moveable shelves. I have never really like the bottom freezer models. But now that it's down to just the two of us most of the time, we don't really store much in the freezer. Besides, it has pull-out drawers so I won't have to dig through it all to find something.

The other good news is that we had lots of sunshine this weekend which means lots of snow melting. I can actually see some grassy spots in my yard. I haven't seen grass since before Christmas!

Hope your week is off to a great start!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Scrapbook Layouts From My Birthday

See...more scrapbook layouts! Woo hoo! These are photos from my birthday in August. Rick, the girls, and I went into Boston for the day. I love to stroll through the Boston Garden, and Emma loves to visit the ducks.
(CTMH Veranda DP, Garden Green, and Colonial White; CTMH Filigree Charms; CTMH Follow Your Heart stamp set; CTMH Opaque Mocha Pearls; Prima Say It in Pearls)

I still can't believe we saw an Oscar Meyer Wienermobile on the freeway~that was just too funny! When Rick and I were kids, we'd see them around every once in awhile. Boy, did this take us back!
There are the most beautiful Weeping Willow trees in the Boston Public Garden. I had to take a photo of one in honor of my mom~she loves these trees. We had one in our backyard when I was a kid.
Of course, we had to ride the swan boats!
And what's a birthday without a chocolate dipped cannoli from Mike's Pastry? It's definitely worth getting older just to enjoy one of those babies on my birthday! LOL
Thanks for visiting. Hope you have a wonderful day!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Emma's Mermaid

Remember the mermaid that Emma painted on her birthday? Well, it was finally glazed and fired and her mommy picked it up for her. Do you think she's happy with it?
I asked her to hold it up so I could get a good picture of it. She took me quite literally! LOL
We're having a "Camp Giffy & Papa" weekend while Brittany is at a Model UN Conference. We have lots of errands to run today, but I am sure we'll squeeze in plenty of fun. Hope your weekend is a fun one, too!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Emma's a GREAT Little Mommy!

Celebrity for a Day!

I feel so honored that Pedrito, the son of our sweet friends Paloma and Pedro, chose to use my book, Zamboni's Bath, as the basis for a school project. He invited me to watch his presentation. Emma and I drove to RI (well, I drove while she watched Cinderella and sang her little heart out!) to celebrate Pedrito's project. Emma, of course, was dressed to the nines! I love her headband (from Paloma). I had to get a close-up or two, and then I couldn't decide which one I liked best, so I'm posting both of them. I love the fact that she's posing. Maybe that's a sign that I take too many photos of her? Nah! That's what Giffys do!
The event turned into an "Author's Visit." The teachers asked about my background, how I became an author, what my writing process is, etc. The kids asked lots of questions about being an author. Then they asked me to read my book. I have not read to a group of children since I quit teaching 8 years ago~and I must say that I've really missed it! They wanted to know all about my other Zamboni books waiting to be published. So I shared the titles and let them guess at the plots. It was so fun to hear their ideas! They were all so excited and begged me to come back when the next one is published. The whole thing made me feel so happy~watching children enjoy the book and feeling excited to write their own stories is a far greater reward than royalties!

After I read the book, Pedrito did a fabulous job presenting his project. He used props that he made from clay to retell the story. I was quite impressed~especially since he's only six! Here we are with his copy of the book and his project.
And here is Pedrito showing his project to Emma.
The really hilarious part about all of this is that the kids think I am a celebrity! LOL They kept saying, "Wow! You're a real live author!" (Yes, I am thankful that I'm not a dead author! Ha ha!) They really think I am famous. They have no idea how anonymous and unglamorous I am~and happy to be that way. Though a million-dollar bestseller would be nice...