Monday, December 31, 2012


This year we spent Christmas at my sister's brand new house, which is really cute.

Nicole showed us around Southington, and we went shopping at a nice mall nearby.

Then, of course, we celebrated Christmas and opened tons of presents.

We tried to fly to Indianapolis the day after Christmas, but there was a blizzard there that caused all of the flights to be canceled.  We ended up getting re-routed to Chicago, and Jesse's dad was nice enough to pick us up from there.  One good thing about having a snow storm is being able to play with the snow.  I didn't, of course, (too cold!) but Jesse's sister made a pretty cute one.

We were also able to play games and go to dinner and a movie with Jesse's mom and Butch.

Now we're back at home for a nice, quiet new years.  I don't typically make resolutions, but I am thinking that we should probably travel less in 2013.  Not that I didn't appreciate all of the cool places we got to travel to in 2012, but the amount of travel was a tad excessive.  Between the two of us, we traveled to five foreign countries (Thailand, Japan, England, Jersey, and Guernsey), eight different states (Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, Massachusetts  Nevada), and five cities within New Mexico (Las Cruces, Carrizozo, Raton, Santa Fe, Socorro).

Of course, we will fly to see family and will likely have work travel, but hopefully it will be limited (unless, of course, we go to Hawaii to celebrate our tenth wedding anniversary -- I am always up for a trip to Hawaii!)

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Chesapeake Layout

I decided to continue using Fancy Pants Country Boutique line for all of our east coast trip pictures.  This layout is of our stop in Maryland, where we stayed in Chesapeake City for the first time and took a boat tour.  

Here is a closeup of some of the embellishments on the layout -- I love how the papers from Fancy Pants Country Boutique coordinate so well with buttons from My Mind's Eye All is Bright line and trim from Teresa Collins Vintage Finds and May Arts.

Go to the Hens' Den blog for full instructions on how to create this layout.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Merry Christmas

We have been to a number of fun Christmas parties this year (this picture is of our small group's Christmas party) and will be spending Christmas with family.  Merry Christmas everyone!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Country Boutique

This month I got to play with the darling Country Boutique line by Fancy Pants.  I used it on this layout of our trip to Gillette Castle in Connecticut.  I love how this line came with corrugated cardboard, which was fun to use. 

Check out all the inspiration on the Hens' Den blog.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

December Newsetter

The Hens' Den December newsletter is here!  My contribution to the newsletter is this layout of our trip to Colorado with Jesse's dad and uncle.  We were there just in time to see all of the beautiful yellow aspens.  I decided to use a lot of the yellow in Teresa Collins Vintage Finds for this layout.

Here is the entire newsletter for your viewing pleasure:

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Noble Fur

Mark this down for the history books -- this is the first year that I have ever had a real Christmas tree!  Our old fake tree is getting kind of sad, and Jesse wanted to try to buy a real one, so that is what we did.  We bought this cute five foot tree, which is really full and green.  

It was actually easier in some ways than I thought it would be and then harder in others.  We had no trouble picking out the tree and strapping it to our car, but it was more difficult to get it in the stand that I thought it would be (of course we realized afterwards that we didn't use one of the tools that came with it!)  We'll see how it lasts and how easy it will be to dispose of it before deciding whether we'll do it again next year.

Saturday, December 1, 2012


This Thanksgiving is the last one that we will spend at Pop Pop's house (he is moving), so it was special.  We also got to celebrate his 95th birthday!  As always, we got to spend time with lots of family, who we are grateful for:

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Balloon Ride Layout

I created this layout of our first hot air balloon ride with Jesse's mom.  We took a lot of great pictures and I wanted to show off as many as I could so I printed them wallet sized and highlighted them on the page using washi tape from Teresa Collins' Vintage Finds line.

I also loved using the honeycomb stickers and brads!

Full instructions on how to create this layout are on the Hens' Den blog.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Bean Town

Last weekend I was in Chicago for an employment law conference.  One of the big reasons I chose that conference was that it was close enough to Rachel to allow her to drive over for the weekend!  She arrived hungry:

One of the highlights of the trip was Millennium Park, where we took a ton of cute/fun pictures.  Aren't we adorable?

It was kind of funny, but the next few hours were a colossal failure.  We were halfway back to our hotel when we decided that we wanted to go to the top of the Sears Tower and found, to our dismay, that it was back the way we came.  We decided the trek was worth it and went on our way.  Despite the forecast for sunny skies, the day got colder, cloudier, and then rainy as we walked.  We finally got to the Sears Tower and then waited in line for an hour to get tickets.  We were literally second from the front of the line to get tickets when they made an announcement that there was ZERO VISIBILITY at the top and that we could buy tickets if we wanted, but there was nothing to see.  We passed, and bemoaned our fate, thinking that we would have made it up in time had we headed straight to the Sears Tower from Millenium Park.  We then decided to take a cab to our original designation -- Navy Pier -- to enjoy a chocolate festival.  Once we got there, we were met with freezing winds and the realization that the chocolate festival was the NEXT WEEK.  Sigh.

We drowned our sorrows in some Pinkberry and then enjoyed a very hilarious comedy show at Second City (the second highlight of the day).  Sadly, our dinner with Rachel's friends was another fail involving serious delays in getting our mediocre food and some drama associated with that.  It really was quite amazing how we managed to have so much go wrong in one day but still had a lot of fun (right Rasey?)  

Sunday was a new day, which we started off on the right foot enjoying our 45th-story window seat view at the Four Seasons.  Rachel took me to Rock It to have Sunday brunch with mimosas (yes, I consumed alcohol each day I was in Chicago) and had THE BEST fries ever (cooked in truffle oil -- to die for!)  We ended our weekend together with an afternoon Blue Man Group show, which is always quite fun.  Thanks for the sister bonding time Rachel!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

(Kind of) the end of soccer season

Jesse played four soccer games this past weekend in an end-of-the-season tournament.  It was cold (I was fully decked out in winter gear) but I guess when you're running around you can manage to wear shorts.

Jesse's team lost the game that I watched, but Jesse himself played really well and they won one of their games that they played the next day.

Jesse isn't done playing soccer yet though.  His indoor soccer season is well underway and he had a game at 10pm last night!  You'll have to wait until he has an earlier game for me to go and take pictures.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Scrapping Vintage Finds

I used Teresa Collins' Vintage Finds to scrap pictures from Jesse's mom's visit and our day trip to Georgia O'Keeffe's Ghost Ranch.  

I love all of the ribbon and decided to show them off with these bows and ties on a whole bunch of tags.

See all of the details here.

Friday, November 9, 2012

All About Albuquerque

We came back from Albuquerque in time for the last weekend of the balloon fiesta.  We didn't get over to the balloon fiesta park, but we live close enough that the balloons come to us.

See what I mean?!?

This picture looks like the creepy funky hen is pooping perching on our house.

Unfortunately, Albuquerque isn't all balloons and sun.  There are also spiders.  Poisonous spiders.  Until recently, I have never ever seen a black widow spider in real life.  Then Jesse spotted a HUGE one in our back yard right on the other side of our patio door.  The exterminator was brought in asap!  When he came, he said he got rid of three (!) black widow spider nests.  And the next week we found another black widow spider in our garage (we only had them spray outside the house).  Needless to say, we will have routine spays from now on.  =S

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Vegas Retreat

Travel seems to be a big theme for us this year.  We left for London on a Monday, and if you thought we spent the weekend before we left packing and planning, you would be wrong.  We were in Vegas!  (Craziness!)  My firm's retreat this year was in Vegas so we had some fun there while trying not to embarrass ourselves in front of all my co-workers!

We stayed at the Venetian and enjoyed our nice suite.  We also went to the outlet mall and had a delicious multi-course meal at Carnivino. 

We also had firm retreat activities, and Jesse signed up for rock climbing at Red Rock.

He's the hot guy with the red helmet in these pictures.

Scary stuff!

This last picture shows all of the adventurous souls who climbed Red Rock.  Note that I am not one of them!  While Jesse was rock climbing, I was playing (and losing) in a pinball tournament at the Pinball Hall of Fame with some of my less athletic co-workers.

After the retreat, we flew home, unpacked and repacked, and grabbed a little sleep before our next flight.  We have certainly been blessed with a lot of great travel opportunities this year.