Thursday, December 31, 2009

Live blogging the new year

I'm...watching House Hunters.


A blog I read recently pointed me to the best dissection of the state of the United States' competitive position in the world I have yet seen, though it is light on viable solutions. However, this section caught me:

As the lower classes in America experience these alarming regressions, wealthier and better-educated Americans have managed to re-create a great deal of the lifestyle of the old WASP ascendancy — if with different justifications for it. Political correctness serves the same basic function for this cohort that "good manners" did for an earlier elite; environmentalism increasingly stands in for the ethic of controlling impulses so as to live within limits; and an expensive, competitive school culture — from pre-K play groups up through graduate school — socializes the new elite for constructive competition among peers. These Americans have even re-created the old WASP aesthetic preference for the antique, authentic, and pseudo-utilitarian at the expense of vulgar displays of wealth. In many cases, they live in literally the same homes as the previous upper class.

Pseudo-utilitarian. A perfect description of how so many well-off people (myself included) think as we conflate our wants and needs. I love it.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009


Our Thanksgiving trip went along wonderfully, as is clear from the cheery pictures below. I hope everyone enjoyed themselves as much as we did.

We had birthdays galore with yards and yards of cake:

Everyone in patient expectation of more cake:

And this year the birthdays were particularly extensive as they covered the whole age spectrum:

Not waiting patiently for cake:

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Installing Carpet = Moving

We have certainly been busy since the last time I posted. We flew to Delaware for Thanksgiving (more about that later . . . right Jesse?) and have been moving ever since. Moving? No, not moving out of our dear house, moving all of our stuff around in our house. Just when things seemed organized, we decided it was time to get new carpeting. In all of our rooms.

In case you have never had carpet installed before, let me explain: that means that all of our possessions had to fit in our kitchen, bathrooms, and garage. Stress, sweat, tears, and hilarity ensued.

Even though our house is still topsy turvy, the new carpet is worth it. It is super-soft (and partially made out of recycled plastic bottles). In fact, it is so plush that we had to have all of our doors shaved down because they would no longer open and close! Ah, the joys of home improvement.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Layouts of Europe

I have been quite the productive scrapper lately. I deviated slightly from my typical chronological scrapping to work on our trip to Europe. I was so excited to use a bunch of my new stash and try different techniques. I have to say that Basic Grey's Wisteria collection is my favorite so far.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Koi Fish

We just received Christmas money from my dad (thanks Daddy), which we put toward our second art purchase. We wanted a large original painting to put in our formal dining room/office and I think this one does the trick!

These koi fish are the only pets we have, so Jesse has begun naming them: Herbert, Roger, Agnes . . .

Sunday, November 22, 2009

O Holy Night

Here is my big reveal of the project I have been working on for a month! When we were kids, we had advent calendars, which we used to count down the days left until Christmas. I decided to make one this year that we could use for years to come. I bought a Kaisercraft wood advent calendar and decorated the heck out of it using Kaisercraft wood flourishes, specialty paper from The Paper Studio and The Paper Company, Doodlebug Designs sugar coated cardstock, We R Memory Keepers snowflake flocked lace ribbon, American Crafts blanc white specialty ribbon, Jolee's snowflakes, Recollections self-adhesive rhinestones, Class A'Peels silver geo shapes, Prima e-line bling assortment 6, Martha Stewart gemstones, Swarovski crystals, Art Institute small glass beads glitter, Diamond Glaze, Adirondack Paint Dabbers, Liquid Pearls, and Stickles.
Ta da! (You can click on the pictures for a close-up view).

Like it? Then please vote for my project at

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Scrapbooking frenzy

I have been quite the productive scrapper this past month and it's about time I shared all of my layouts with you guys. This first layout is quite appropriate because it is about Thanksgiving. Granted, this was Thanksgiving 2006, but still!

Aww, Chloe's first Christmas. I still can't get over how cute she was in that sack! Credit for the amazing card that I used as an embellishment here goes to my talented sister Rachel.

Here are more Chloe pictures. It's so fun to make such girly layouts.

I was really excited about these pages because I got to use my Wisteria Basic Grey pack and my BoBunny chunky charms. Lovely, all.

And here is an ode to my favoriate orator ever . . . Rachel. So many memories wrapped up in one layout. Here, I branched out with my distress inks and masks. So many techniques to explore!

These pictures go way back and fill in some holes in my album. I got to use more of my flocked lace ribbon -- some of my favorite stuff ever.

This is a rather simple layout, but I am a fan of simplicity. It looks more dynamic in real life because you can see the glitter and texture. The ripped pages are core'dinations paper so there is a coordinating color core that the ripping reveals. I was very excited to use this paper!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Cleaning House

I apologize profusely for failing to post for . . . about a month! I have been obsessed with a project, which I'll reveal later (hey, you have to have something to look forward to). In the meanwhile, I'm posting about a project we finished a little while ago but never posted about. You know our front room, which used to look like this?

Well now it looks like this!

And if you think all of that was easy, think again!

It felt good to get this project done before the inlaws came to stay. While they were here, they helped us bring home and set up our newest furniture purchase: our dinette set!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Evening in Albuquerque

We were fortunate enough to host Mom and Butch for a long weekend. Our trip up to Sandia Peak ended right near sunset, with beautiful vistas our reward for braving only 40 degrees at the top.