Thursday, July 30, 2009

Hoorray - we're off and running!!!

Wow - I can't believe it has been almost a month since I last updated?! I apologize once again to the masses! LOL! I can see by the lack of smack - ya'll didn't even notice - much less miss - my absence?! I am not sure how I feel about this?!

I will just take solace in believing that you must be just as busy with summer and life as I have been! Life is good... and summer brings with it lack of routine - which if you know me at ALL you know how much I thrive on routines and schedules! So - after our DC trip it took me about a week or so to get back into my normal life! I have struggled this summer in remaining focused and disciplined with my weight loss efforts... last year was hard in the summer but I was still losing at a steady pace and so the motivation was there! This year, however, I have been battling through that dreaded Plateau - leaving my motivation dragging behind... I have lost a bit here and there... (and gained it back and lost it again) and I should remeasure soon - but I know that I haven't been consistent in the Strength Training to really 'blame' it all on muscle! LOL! I am pressing through... I am nearing the 80 pounds gone mark - and hope to press through and lose another 20 or so at a regular pace!

I am working on a Wedding Album - LOVE to do these!!! I get to work with the Basic Grey Wisteria line and I am in LOVE with it - the colors are so yummy! I have done a few Baby Albums as well...

I have also been partnering with in designing digital photo books! This is such an awesome opportunity - and a great site! So far, I have designed about 5 lines - 2 birthday, 2 PuppyLove, and a FriendshipCafe Line! I think they are slowly adding the creations - so check out the website and look for my creations in the Designer Lines section! Right now - they are featuring my PuppyLove line for Girls! I also have one in more masculine male colors... Check back here soon for a little LOVE... hoping to get a freebie or two to share with you all - my faithful followers and sneaky stalkers! I love these photo books because they make GREAT gifts or special occassion books with a scrapbook look but they are fast and easy - just upload your photo's to Hoorray and drag and drop! Nice!!! So - check out the designs and let me know what you think!

Anyway - I will be back to a normal routine soon... I am working on some holiday themes for Hoorray and hope to be back to writing soon too!

So - what have you been doing this summer?! Are you working on any fun layouts or vacation picture projects?! Do tell!!!

Scrap Happy and Stay Cool! (We're in triple digits here!)

Sunday, July 05, 2009

Our Vaca in DC and the Sisterhood

Well, we are back from our vacation to the East Coast... we've been back for almost a week - although it doesn't seem like it! I think we needed a week to recover! We had an amazing time though and came home with tons of memories and, of course, quite a few photo's as well! I plan on making a photo book digitally using most of them - but you know I am gonna have to play with some of the pictures using paper and scissors, scrappin' 'em old school!

Our flight from Seattle to Detroit was a red eye and we did not get any sleep whatsoever! Not that we would have anyway- (just couldn't get comfy on a full plane!) but there was this single Mom with an inconsolable baby... I felt bad for the both of them - but also for the rest of the passengers! It also made me very thankful that not only is my daughter older, she is a great traveler - always has been! We changed planes in Detroit and flew in to BWI in Baltimore around 9ish on Monday morning... we were feeling pretty exhausted and once we gathered our luggage and caught the train to downtown, we were then left to wander the streets, looking for our hotel! Luckily it really was only a few blocks away and they let us check in early - which meant sleep - glorious sleep! We spent our first day there, after napping, walking around Inner Harbor in Baltimore. That was fun and a great little area... We began to get text messages and phone calls in the late afternoon from friends and family - concerned that we may have been in DC that day - using the Metro system that had the accident. We were not anywhere close to DC on Monday and had no pans of using that particular system while traveling around - but we DID need to use the light rails and other trains during our trip - so I purposely did not turn n the news or read the paper... I have an active imagination and do not need any extra visuals to help out!

Tuesday and Wednesday were our planned days to go in to DC... we commuted via the Marc - which was about an hour ride into Union Station. Wow... Union Station is pretty impressive on its own! A huge hub of activity and buzz! We managed to get almost everything on our list done while in DC! We saw the Capitol (but not inside!), the Washington Monument, the White House, the World War 2 Memorial, the National Archives, the Lincoln Memorial, the Holocaust Museum, as well as most of the Smithsonian's! We didn't get to take in the National Zoo, the National Aquarium, or the Library of Congress. We would have liked a bit more time to drink in the art and to wander some of the Gardens - but we had full days and all had a great time! My top three favorites were definitely the Lincoln Memorial, the World War 2 Memorial, and the Room of Remembrance in the Holocaust Museum.

On Thursday we could have taken the train in again - but decided to explore more of Inner Harbor and just take it easy! We ended up taking the water taxis all over the area - including going to Fort McHenry - where the Star Spangled Banner was written. Pretty cool! We loved Fells Point - a quaint little port town with tons of history and, of course, crab cakes! We did a bit of shopping and finally (FINALLY!?!!!) found a Starbucks! Yeah - day FIVE... and I finally got to have coffee?! We also heard of Michael Jacksons' death... which left my daughter in tears... even surprising herself! We were fans BEFORE the renewed frenzy after his passing - but it was sort of a joke before... I mean - people made fun of her... and now everyone has his songs on their ipods!

Friday we rented a car and headed to PA! Wow - Washington State is a green state - but nothing like PA! It is gorgeous and lush there! We drove to Hershey and met up with the Sisterhood! My group of girlfriends I 'met' online via! We had become fast friends and chat online every week and after about a year, finally decided to plan a Scrapbook Retreat so we could all meet in person! Most of them are over in the other side of the country - so it made sense to meet over there... 10 of our 12 were able to make it and we had a BLAST!!! Not much scrapping got done - but still?! Actually there were a handful of productive scrappers - you know who you are! - but most of us just enjoying chatting in person and hanging out! As much as we would love to do it once a year - realistically it is more likely we will do it every other year, or every three years!? We'll see... we will definitely do it again though! Chatting online now - though it is more fun - is just not the same!

While I was with my girlfriends, the fam' traveled to New Jersey and New York for some sight seeing. Yeah... it was stressful and almost deadly - but they made it and even ended up having a pretty good time! It was great that the two of them got to spend some one on one time together! They got to see the Statue of Liberty, the Empire State building, the New York skyline, take the subway and have breakfast on 33rd & Broadway and walk around on the New Jersey Boardwalk! They gladly headed back to PA on Saturday afternoon to check into a hotel and catch a movie and just unwind! They came to get me on Sunday - just missing most of the Sistahs (or is that Sissers?)... thanks again Robin for staying with me! We hung around the area for lunch and a bit of roaming and then went back to Baltimore - ready for our flight home on Monday! I DID get to see fire flies on Sunday night... no pix sadly - but still - that is one thing I wanted to see that I was doubtful was going to happen!

Our flights home were nicer - quieter... and even after having car trouble on the way back home - we were so happy to BE home again! We left our hotel Monday morning at 9:15 Eastern time and crawled into (our OWN!) bed around 4am Eastern time! It was a LONG day!

So - we are back home - and back to our normal life - which right now is full of changes and challenges, but we are so thankful for the great vacation and memories made! Now we are faced with car shopping, job hunting, and refocusing on projects at hand! I will be jumping into that Wedding album job next week and have completed five themes/books for so far! Look for Hoorray to relaunch the new site soon - featuring digital scrapbooks where you simply drag and drop your photo's - quick and easy! I just completed a Friendship Cafe book that I am really excited about, as well as a PuppyLove book for you dog lovers out there!

I will include just a handful of my favorite pix from our trip...
Enjoy - and Scrap Happy!

The fam at Inner Harbor

The fam at The Capitol in DC

The Botanical Gardens - DC

The Declaration

WW2 Memorial

The White House

Lincoln Memorial

KK @ Lincoln Memorial with WA Monument in background

WA Monument

NY Skyline via the Staten Island ferry

Statue of Liberty

On Staten Island Ferry

New Jersey Boardwalk

The Sisterhood of the Traveling Crops
I love these girls!!!

Lastly - as I posted in my last update - I read the Operation Beautiful blog and decided to play along... so here are a few of the Post It's I left along the East Coast...