A DIY Frozen Birthday

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These two precious girls are growing up way too fast. It wasn’t that long ago that I spent the week after valentines in the hospital, lying in bed with a bloated, whale-like pregnant belly, and watching the Olympics on TV.  That was in 2010. When things slid from bad to worse, labor was induced and 15 hours later, twin baby girls were born and rushed off to the NICU (their mother ungraciously passed out in an unladylike unmotherly-like manner. That’s a whole other story…)
At 9:18 pm and 9:27 pm on Monday, February 22, my perfect and tiny twinlets were born. It’s been a rush ever since. Every year, I get to re-live the rush of delivering them in a whole new way- planning and celebrating the evening they were born. Their birthday.
Each year, I choose a theme (albeit a loose interpretation of a theme), then “plan” their birthday party. This year will be a bit different- planning really needs to happen, complete with a game or two and craft, because they’re finally getting old enough to want to play and enjoy playing games and doing crafts- for longer than 30 seconds. Here’s a few things I’m planning for our Frozen 5th birthday; as always, you’ll find all my pins here.

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I know this isn’t too Frozen like, but I’m hoping to use a different juice to make this punch- so it’ll look more “Frozen”!

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I adore the snowflakes on this invitation, so I’m going to adapt it to my own Frozen invitations. Samples coming up in a future post!!

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Happily, there’s a tutorial for creating these gorgeous icy branches using Epsom salts. Head over to my Pinterest and follow the links back to this wonderful blog!

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(The 4 actually needs to be a 5…)

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I love this idea more than I should- pin the nose on Olaf. The things we get excited over as parents…

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…maybe I’ll make this punch instead.

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This is the entire reason I started planning a Frozen birthday for the twins. You may recall this was one of my December Daily entries. (This entry, to be exact). Their cake won’t be this big, they’re only inviting a few kids. That’s on my agenda for later today or tomorrow (ordering it from our local grocery store).
Have you planned a Frozen party? What are your favorite decorations or party planning ideas?

December Daily Day 24

To learn more about December Daily, visit this post: https://theeverydayscrapbooker.wordpress.com/2014/12/01/december-daily/

It’s the eve before the most joyous day of the year. How do you do happy?
Here’s one way I do it:

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My husband was home today. While I waited on my laundry to dry, I played with paper for a bit! {I can HARDLY WAIT to share this layout with you!!! It’s got a fun and unique way to fit lots of pictures into your layout.}
Speaking of sharing with you, I need your help. For an upcoming post, I’m looking for handmade and/or DIY FROZEN party decoration ideas. Share with me what your fave ideas are and they could be featured on my blog (including a warm, friendly shout out to your blog, too!) Once I’ve collected enough great ideas, I’ll share the goods with you. Sound good?!
Lastly, have a very Merry Christmas and a hearty cheers to 2015! Thanks for visiting my little corner of the internets; I hope to see you again in the new year!

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December Daily Day 23

For more information about my December Daily challenge, go here: https://theeverydayscrapbooker.wordpress.com/2014/12/01/december-daily-day-one/
I’m also hosting a scrapbook class, starting in January. For more info, visit this link!

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A person can’t help but feel festive when mother nature jumps in and decorates nature with hoar frost.

I did!

December Daily Day 22

There’s still lots of room in my scrapbook club! For all the details, visit this post!
For more info about my December Daily challenge, visit this post.

I search for excuses to make the recipe I’m about to share with you. If you’re in the mood for delicious wintery comfort food, I’d say this recipe fits the bill. It’s potatoey, cheesey and definitely tasty. And, although I look for reasons to make it, this dish doesn’t grace my table near often enough. It only seems to make an appearance when company is coming over. It’s a good thing we’re having company tomorrow!
In the spirit of giving and sharing, I thought I’d share this yummy side dish. A special thanks (and thumbs up) goes out to Kraft Canada for the creation of this wonderful dish- and many more, that have become favorites in our house!

Cheddar-Mashed Potato Casserole

INGREDIENTS:

-2 lb. Yukon gold potatoes (about 6), peeled and quartered
-2 tbsp. Margarine
-1/2 cup sour cream
-1 cup Kraft double cheddar shredded cheese
-2 tbsp. Oscar Mayer real bacon bits

METHOD:

Cook potatoes in boiling water in large saucepan for 20 minutes or until tender; drain. Return to pan.
Heat oven to 350°F. Add margarine and sour cream to potatoes; mash until smooth. Spoon half into 1.5 L casserole dish; cover with layers of cheese, remaining potato mixture and bacon bits.
Bake 30-35 minutes or until heated through.
*For a slight variation, add 1 tsp. minced garlic along with margarine and sour cream.

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New in 2015!

Ever use the excuse that you’ve got no time for scrapbooking- or crafting, period- after all your work, chores, kid wrangling, meal cooking, errand running, not-enough-hours-in-the-day whirlwind of a day, week, month, or year typically happens?
I have, too. I think about doing it- quite frequently, honestly. When my kids are home, there’s no ever-loving way I would even THINK about scrapbooking when they’re around. We inevitably end up doing a craft for THEM. Not me. And, scrapbooking has become more than preserving my memories. It’s become a way to preserve ME. I’m a mom, too, and kiddo and mommy responsibilities severely cuts in to my personal time. Often,  when I do get time to play, I don’t feel like it anymore. The reasons why are numerous- it’s too late in the day, I’m too tired, stressed out, the list could go on.
And, you’re thinking, “yeah, right. This is a scrapbook blog. Of course you’ve got time, and can MAKE time to scrapbook”. Granted. But, have you seen any scrapbook layouts or projects that I’ve made recently- as in the last month?
Gotcha!
What if we could change that?  What if we scheduled time for ourselves, and time for crafting? The only catch is that you have to WANT to make time for yourself. Make yourself a priority. One evening per month, for most of the calendar year) to sip on wine, munch on good food, chit chat with other ladies- ADULTS!!!- and do what you love, all at the same time, is the first of two requirements. Scratch that. Three requirements.
Secondly, there’ll be a mandatory, minimal related fee.
Lastly, and most importantly, HAVE FUN!!
Here’s how it would work:

As I mentioned above, a fee is required. Starting in January, I’ll be hosting a SCRAPBOOK CLUB. With a few breaks throughout the year to allow for holidays and summer vacation, this class will run for the remainder of the calendar year. The fee will cover the materials you’ll need to complete an entire scrapbook album. Assuming that the participants have previous experience scrapbooking, you’ll only be required to purchase whichever Close To My Heart kit we settle on (I’ve currently got two possibilities in mind). I’ll purchase any supporting stamps and tools, etc. required to complete our album. We’ll create one double page layout per class (unless we’re feeling ambitious and think we can complete two per class).
If you’re unfamiliar with scrapbooking, but want to learn more, you’re welcome to join us too! I can help you make the necessary purchases you need, or an experienced friend can help, instead!
Of course, you’re more than welcome to order more Close To My Heart product as you’re able to, as well.
I’m unsure, at the moment, if I’ll require additional orders throughout the month. I’d love to offer hostess rewards to my club members (each month there’ll be a new hostess).
At the end of the year (likely November) we’ll have a completed scrapbook album!

So…we have two possibilities before us and a decision needs to be made:  create a Christmas album OR start with a valentines themed half album.

What do I mean half album?

Rather than one entire album that’s dedicated to the Valentines holiday, we’ll create one double page spread for valentines, then make a second order to scrapbook with a more “general” kit until the next holiday (Easter or Thanksgiving). Any subsequent holidays may require additional CTMH orders. 
What are your thoughts? I’m leaning towards doing a Christmas album- or mini album. Since I’m already going to be ordering the Holiday Happenings kit,  you should join me!

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What do you need?

1. Yourself!
2. CTMH Holiday Happenings kit {for example}; OR scrapbook album (should we decide against the mini album)
3. CTMH kit
4. Paper trimmer
5. Adhesive
6. Pictures

I’ll supply the rest.

Now it’s your turn. Do you want to join and which direction would you like to take? Sign up here. Or via a comment on this blog post. Our class will start mid January. Don’t miss out!

December Daily Day 21

If you’d like to know more about my December Daily challenge, please visit This post.

If you’re wondering why there’s a large gap in December Daily posts, there’s a good reason! Find out why here and here.

What comes to mind when you think of gear? It’s another word that’s got a broad and generic definition.
I could have used our winter gear to fulfill today’s photo prompt, but decided to take it in another direction, instead.

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(Personally, I like this interpretation better!)
For Christmas, grandma M gave the girls new princess “slippers”, as miss A is fond of calling them. Real play shoes no longer fit my children (only because they’re too tall for it!!); so, the next logical solution was to buy proper dress shoes. Apparently, we made the right choice- they LIVE in their new shoes! Now to find (one day) proper princess dresses that actually fit them, to complete our princess gear!

December Daily Day 20

For more information about my December Daily challenge, please visit this post.

Are you wondering why there’s a big gap in my December Daily posts? Go here and here.

Gregory is a rescue. He’s also a surrender. If you go back even further, he’s a survivor. (If you’re new to my blog and don’t know who Gregory is, or if you’ve visited before but don’t know who he is, I’ll enlighten you. He’s my cat- a sweet, loving, dog-caught-in-a-cats-body fixture in our home).
It’s taken a number of years for his true personality to shine through. Moreover, I think it’s finally broken through because he’s found a place where he feels comfortable and truly happy. That’s with our family.
When I first brought him home, I was told to never let him outside and never have other pets in my home. He came from a home where he was terrorized by another family pet. He found himself at the Humane Society until Extendicare took him in as the residence cat. He had a good life there- it would have been any pets’ dream come true- free handouts at every meal and when he visited his favourite residents. He got to have a sleepover with someone different every night and never had to worry about other animals pestering him.
Then, one day, the social worker finally had a severe allergic reaction to Gregory (he got into her office one too many times), which required a trip to the hospital and a new home for kitty. Being the unit clerk, and because my permanent bench was at the centre of all the nursing activity, I overheard what happened before the rest of the nurses aides. If no one wanted him, I offered to take him as my own pet. Sparing him a repeat visit to the Humane Society (not that I think that would have happened). He was well loved by nursing staff and residents alike. He was incredibly anti-social though. Like I said, he had his favorites. Otherwise he was scarcely seen- never during the day.
As time went on, after I “adopted” him, he ventured outside, eventually hunting and leaving his spoils at the door for us; he learned to {grudgingly, but never aggressively} reside with a dog 3 times his size, mellowed out enough to allow four grabby toddler hands “play” with him, and now, more recently, co-habitate with a dog about his same size. He “talks” to us frequently, begs when there’s any sort of meaty smell wafting through the air and loves his cuddles. He is patient, affectionate and incredibly special to me. Other than my husband, Gregory (and now Freddie) are the only other males in my life that have captured my heart. Completely.
What’s special to you?

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A Memory Becomes a Treasure

Family is a pretty broad term, isn’t it? When I first thought of using this word as part of my December Daily challenge, I never dreamed this word would wind up holding as much importance as it does- or that it would resonate so deeply with me. Family doesn’t just mean you’re related by blood or by name to another individual; friends, if they’re close enough, can come to be like family too.
In part, this post is a tribute to J, a dear friend my husband lost contact with, but never stopped loving like a brother. J’s family was like my husband’s second family- either K was at J’s house, or the other way around. We got married around the same time (J’s was just 11 months ahead of ours) and J’s firstborn is 2 months older than my own firstborns. Yes, K and J were cut from the same fabric.
Our loss is heavens’ gain. The details surrounding J’s death is somewhat of a mystery yet, aside from knowing for certain he was involved in a fatal car accident. What we don’t know yet, is what caused the accident. Its speculation right now, but some kind of medical trauma may have occured at the time of the accident. According to the other individual involved, nlthing was out of the ordinary until the very last second. No swerving, erratic driving or skid marks. He didnt even hit his brakes. Dear, dear J. Im still trying to make sense of such a senseless accident. Poor L, his wife, is still numb with shock- as we all are.
Rest in peace, dear friend. Don’t start the party until K joins you and L. ♡

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So, in addition to good friends becoming family, family is family. We’ll be going to Edmonton to spend Christmas with these beautiful faces:

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It’s just a few short days away! Are you ready?!

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                               J.H.
     November 1976-December 2014

December Daily Day 11

To learn more about my December Daily challenge, please visit this post.

Welcome to Day 11 of my December Daily photo challenge!
We all have favorites. Be it favorite coffee mugs, songs, ways to do our hair or knick knacks, there is something- or multiple things- that are classified as favorites. Right now, I’m listening to Automatic by Miranda Lambert. It’s one of my favorite songs. I spent the early part of the day with two of my most favorite people- my daughters. I spent a bit of time in my most favorite room in the house this morning- my craft haven. (It wasn’t long enough. It never usually is). Another one of my favorite people has inspired and challenged me (unbeknownst to her) to use up the stuff in my hoard stash. So, I’m using all my favorite product to make room for more favorite product. Why keep it hidden away in color coded file folders when I can show it off in a beautifully and thoughtfully created scrapbook album?!
While I pondered today’s photo prompt, my bell wreath once again came to mind. It was a good idea, but I wanted a different subject. Then I thought of my favorite coffee mugs (there’s currently two. I added a new favorite after bringing home a High Roller souvenir coffee mug from Las Vegas). Hmm. It didn’t quite make the cut. Instead, my angel did:

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It’s prim perfection. I’m all about primitive decor and am about to embark on making my home {modern} primitive. It’s my favorite “style”, if you can call home decor that.
So there you have it- this girl that scrapbooks and sells Close to My Heart scrapbooking and card making supplies, and that’s anal about her home decor coordinating with her walls also loves primitive home decor. Who knew?!
What would you classify your favorites?

December Daily Day 10

For more information about December Daily and the challenge I’m hosting, please visit this post: https://theeverydayscrapbooker.wordpress.com/2014/12/01/december-daily/

What are your favorite wintertime activities? Here’s a small hint as to what ours is:

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Our last lesson for the season is tonight. We can’t wait to start all over again in January!