Tuesday, September 30, 2008


Have a Cricut?

Want to play with some fun cartridges?

Let's get together!

Saturday 11-3

bring your mat, machine and cartridges

let's see what we can make!!

Friday, September 26, 2008

Saturday- BUSY and full of fun!!!

Saturday - let's make FALL Banners or some letters

We have fun Halloween paper and tons of new stamps

Our studio is open from 11-4

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Fun new projects to look for!

We are thinking of Fall and Christmas. Do you want to alter some wood for home decor or make a gift to give to a neighbor, teacher, grandparent or friend! These projects and tons more are in the works! Keep an eye out for your calendar!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

breathing again

today i don't feel so hopeless. i am thankful that my boughts of "OH MY GOSH" don't last long. Your comments really made a difference. In so many ways you are right.

things are good
mike is in a safe place getting help
i am surrounded by good, loving people
i have a fun store
i have a great job
i have a wonderful daughter
i have funny dogs

I just want to stop feeling so hit upside the head at times.

instead I need to dwell on this
"they that wait on the Lord will mount up on wings like eagles, they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not faint"

and this
Telling you, 'You're my servant, serving on my side. I've picked you. I haven't dropped you.'Don't panic. I'm with you. There's no need to fear for I'm your God.I'll give you strength. I'll help you. I'll hold you steady, keep a firm grip on you

and this
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.
Psalm 27:14Wait for the LORD; be strong and take heart and wait for the LORD

thanks for sticking with me. mike had his interview today, it was positive, he will have one more and then a hospital will be chosen. We are asking that it be North. Our prayer is that God would place him close to us so we could function as a family on occasion. Your will be done Lord. amen

for now

i am tired
i am no longer capable of being nice
i am spent
i am not sure my life is ever going to get better
will we have a family together again?
why is mike doing so poorly this week?

i want to swear and scream and swear some more...
i am done
i don't want to talk
i want action
i want things to be okay again
i want to wake up happy
i want to think about others again
i want to understand
i want to see the good
i want to not wake up in the middle of the nite
i want to be a good friend again
i want to not worry
there has to be an end to this season

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Amazing girls!!! YOU ROCK!!!!!!

Tonight at the store we had a meeting with the girls that help out at the store. They are an amazing bunch. They are so talented, full of life, willing to sacrifice and help us, they love crafting and projects and their families. Tami, Cori, 'Manda and Melissa you all rock and I am so thankful that you are in my life. Thanks for being so wonderful. Love ya!!! Watch out for their blogs, and some fun new projects and classes, the Fall is full of fun.

Monday, September 22, 2008

A calendar for my Michael

I made this calendar to send to Mike this week. He is not coming home for awhile and I thought he should have a reminder he is loved.

If you would like to make one call us! We have ideas!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

FALL and fun rub-on's

Today reminded me of Fall. Are you ready to make some Home decor items? Thinking about making calendars for Christmas gifts! We have new rub-on's and Fall and Halloween papers! We will even host a class with you and some friends. Just give us a call

These rub-on's are just $2.00, they are colorful and fun for your layouts and cards!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Scenic route fun items! UNDU

Have you seen this amazing deal?
For $1.25 you can have fun chipboard
from Scenic Route!
we have UN-DU

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Quotes and things that make me smile

Prayer isn't about putting burdens on others.

It's about inviting them into our conversations with God.

It's about letting those we love walk with down a path

with us that we were never intended to walk alone.
Prayer is simply coming into the presence of God. Because when you come into the presence of God, even the things you don't have matter a lot less.
I don't have a bucket list, heck I don't even have dreams and goals right now.... thats a weird thing for me to admit.. but its true. I can think of some things that would make me smile so that is where I am starting......
~My own fountain diet coke machine w/special ice
~The smell of the ocean on the Oregon coast
~Christmas papers and embellishments
~The leaves turning in the trees and the nites are a little cooler
~Introducing someone to scrapbooking for the first time
Do you have dreams? or are you working on a bucket list?

Friday, September 12, 2008

Saturday- BUSY and full of fun!!!

My Soroity Buddies are coming to crop in the morning at the store. Its going to be a GREAT day!
Then from 3-midnite Melissa is going to host a crop. There will be prizes and dinner! Get in here and get crafty!!!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Fun pictures.... I love new items

I thought I would show you some fun things from the store... Tami Card class, Dionne's BOO letters and Jan's Halloween display!
New letters arrived this week! You need to come and decorate some for your home.

Time to be Thankful

I was reminded today by Shauna at Upinthenite that its so important to be thankful. She is reading a book on change and it discusses how we build alters to the difficult and tough things in our lives. I confess I built one stinkin' huge monstrosity of an alter around Mike. And such a big alter that it made all of us sick. That is one thing I am learning about mental illness and addictions that come with it, it doesn't just affect one person but the family as a whole. So as Mike is away getting well and working on him, we need to be working on us. Its not about surviving any longer but about living. In living I have to have a grateful Heart. In being Thankful I am reminded of God's goodness and His faithfulness and have much to give Thanks about......

* through the last few months, I have grown closer to so many. Some have said that in crisis you learn who your true friends are. I have so many, I mean more than a handful that love me, pray for me, bring me diet coke, encourage me, have cried with me and more...... too many to name and so dear to my heart.
* my daughter, the light of our lives is loving being back into a routine. She is back in dance and wanting to be challenged, she is growing in her ballet and love for worship and the arts. Its so nice to see God moving in her and through her.
* I love Fall, I love all the holiday items that are arriving into the store, the new customers we are attracting and the excitement that comes with a new fresh season.
* Mike is more animated when he calls. He is taking interested in our family again, he just isn't thinking about ending his life, he is wanting to know about the dogs, and the stores.... its refreshing
* We finally met stoploss with our insurance. If you don't know what that means to us, its huge. It means that we have paid out of pocket to a certain dollar amt and now the insurance will pay 100% of mike's bills. Today I had a moment and thanked one of the insurance approvers for allowing Mike to stay one more week at his hospital. She was nice. The one who I was sure hated me and spewed bile all last year was decent and nice. Now that is GOD.

I don't like what I see what I look back at the alter I had built around mike and his illness. I don't like who I was and how I was reacting. I hope that by being Thankful and really spending sometime with the One who knows me best in worship and prayer... that alter will be destroyed and I will be okay again.

how about you? alters? thankful?

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Monday, September 8, 2008

Got me some love!

Tami Sue tagged me. She rocks! She is my buddy! I bounce ideas off of her, love to talk about scrapbooking, and life, she helps in the store, she listens to my woe's when I am sad.... she is mad creative, she likes Diet coke and has a Coach handbag fetish like me. She understand good shoes and loves to travel! I don't know what I would do without her........ So thank for the LOVE award Tami!!!

The rules for the award are - (1) The winner can put the logo on their blog. (2) Link the person you received your award from. (3) Nominate at least 7 other blogs. (4) Put links of those on yours. (5) Leave a message on the blogs of the girls or boys you’ve nominated.Now I get to nominate 7 people:

Sunday, September 7, 2008

J to the M to the E

Today is an ode to a pal! James is 30 today. She isn't sure she wants to turn 30. Let's just say that 2008 isn't hasn't been a 5 star for James. But I tell ya, I wouldn't have survived this year without James.

Here is my top 10 list about Jamie

10- She rocks as a mom, Cormac and Chloe not only have a ton of fun exploring this world but they are laid back and fun to be around. They say funny things, wear great clothes and just enjoy life. Their mom makes sure that they are seeing the world with eyes wide open

9- She doesn't care if her house looks like a showroom or not, she leaves the door unlocked and all are welcome. There might be folded laundry on the couch or the remenants of Chloe's last attempt at painting with nailpolish on the hardwood floors but you are still welcome. Come in, grab a beverage and enjoy

8- She is up for fun at almost anytime, ready to chit chat, visit, or just listen. We have had plenty of time's at Tomato Bros. attempting to solve the worlds problems, only to live again tomorrow

7- She isn't afraid to tell it like it is, Jamie likes to read and be educated, she won't shove things down your throat but she will enjoy a heated debate and that is so fun. One time I learned about Huckby and talked politics it was a GREAT discussion

6- She tells a funny story, when I need a laugh, when the world is funny I can call Jamie. She sees the world with a set of glasses that are full of hope and laughter

5- I can be myself with James. We all know I haven't had the most fun ride this year. James is there to listen to make me laugh to just check in, to really ensure that I am out of bed and at work when I would rather pull the covers over my head. I can be me, the good, the bad and well you know the rest.

4- She loves her family. She is committed to raising a family in this crazy mixed up world. She respects her husband, she takes good care of those extended family in her life and that is a lot of work! And she loves my family too. She helps out with Savannah and cares about Mike and what's going on!!! She loves my mom like I do and that means the world to me.

3- She knows the value of Diet coke in my life. Now that is a friend!

2- She found a special ice supplier, rock on sister!

1- She hangs with me at my store and scrapbooks. We tell funny stories, we laugh, we gripe, we are and its GREAT she stays late, stops by when I am just there working and we have a great time. She makes having a store a lot of fun.
Happy Birthday Pal. Hope its a GREAT ONE!

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Such an act of kindness

Tonight I was on the run, driving from the store to home to take Savannah to babysit and I got a phone call. It was my friend Gini, she had made us dinner and wanted to know if she could run it by, it so happened I was 3 steets away. She had made us an amazing dinner, spaghetti with meat sauce, salad with croutons, garlic bread, homemade chocolate chip cookies and DIET COKE! Now that is amazing. It was such a blessing. I got to meet her youngest son, Owen and visit with her and her husband Chris. This family is dear to my heart, we have been friends for over 20 years. They love God, they are as real as they come and live a normal life in our small town. It was a huge blessing to me and Savannah. Gini will never know how touched I was and thankful. It tasted soooooooo good!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

NEW store arrivals!

NEW Karen Foster
outdoor, hunting, fishing and camping!

New Scenic Route Appleton
(layout taken from their website)
We love Scenic Route, its bright, fun and ready for your back to school pictures!
There is lots of new Ribbon, paper, wood shaped albums and more. Hurry in, you won't want to miss it!

more on my life..... (caution tough thoughts)

Not really into learning right now. In fact if I could take a few steps back I would. I have been thinking about how this summer has shaken me and my reactions are so different that what I typically might say or do.

This week I have had words with my brother, he said something that hurt, he didn't realize how badly. (I can count on one hand the fights we have had in the last 20 years.) But in my current emtional state I reacted, I was hurt, I was sad, to top it off he told my mom, that makes me more mad. He has no idea how complicated my life is, how many plates I keep up in the air at one time and how many people I have to make happy. I know that he didn't intend to hurt me but what he said isn't easily taken back. I can forgive him but I also choose to just not be engaged. The worst part is, we planned a family vacation soon to the beach and it was the first time I would see him in over a year and probably not again for a year. (we never gone that long in this lifetime, we are have grown up a very closeknit family)

I had words with mike, it was a misunderstanding over the phone, its so hard to call him and to talk about things that I need to discuss. Although he is in a mental hospital working through life things, he has it pretty easy, he is told when to eat, when to sleep, how to feel and given plenty of meds to cope with life. I on the other hand am working, two jobs, raising a daughter, wondering about a son who is away right now, dealing with ill parents, two businesses, a very sick aunt (who is my one and only) and trying to keep it all going. I have friends that are hurting and whom I would like to be a "friend too," ... and yet I get tired. I get frustrated, I am spent.

I am battling insurance companies, doctor's offices, and trying to get into a new schedule as a single parent of a daughter who refuses to drive a car.

It rocks my faith, I am trying to understand on a spiritual level/my view of God... I think God can take it and isn't surprised by all of this, He can handle every emotion, He knows when I cry at nite so no one will hear, when I can't sleep worrying about the details, where there will be enough money to keep going or how we will pay yet more bills. At times I want to scream when I am driving down the road, and ask God WHY? WHY don't you just heal him? Why don't you just come in and do it; so we can go on living? I hear from people around me I am so strong, but they just don't see it, I am angry, I am sad, I want to turn my back and run from God and from the world, I am just so hurt that this is the life I am living. But I think that I am beginning to understand that God can handle it, that when I have nothing left to offer to say, then where is my faith? What is my definition of trust? This is not necessarily what I thought Trust was... I thought that Trust was going to mean that things turned out the way that I thought they should, when maybe now TRUST should mean believing that someone (God) is going to be with you no matter what the road is doing in front of you or behind you. I have to TRUST His promises though I don't feel like He's there........

more to come....

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

a few things I know...

There are a few things in this life that I think I am good at. Things that aren't difficult for me...

*I do not get lost in the mall and I typically know where my car is at.. this sense of direction is valuable as I have placed a lot of time and effort into retail therapy. I find a sense of solace roaming a mall.
* I can typically find my way around any city, even when I haven't ever been there, its a knack and a ton of fun, I love to go exploring, I think my whole family could say they are like this...
* I am the go-to girl, I know new jobs, houses to rent or buy, or a friend who might know a friend.. etc. its fun and yet at times burdensome 'cause I feel the need to lend a hand even when I am running on empty.
* I also am really good with insurance companies, some of you may laugh at that thought, but I have been down the road a few times, plus add in the fact I worked for one of the "blues" for awhile and I learned a lot. I know my way around an EOB, I can figure out the most complicated benefit and I hate hate hate to deal with their customer service people.

Today I had the opportunity to deal with one of the providers we have been using for the last 18 months. They neglected to bill one of our insurance companies and now it might be past the submission time. Its funny that it might now be my problem, what part of "sign this contract, provide us the insurance companies, we have already confirmed your coverages and we will take care of the rest" Well they sorta dropped the ball. NICE? Its a 1500.00 bill, When I questioned the person at the office, she pulled the hard file, and wanted to see where they made the error, I really at this point could care less where they made the error, I am not going to PAY THE BILL. I then hung up with this new billing girl, and called back asking to speak to her boss. I was PERFECTLY happy with our last orthodontist and never wanted to change but our dentist recommended this.... grrrrr. I told the front desk girl that if we could leave their practice we would leave today, but you don't do that when you are 3/4 the way thru with braces treatment. Needless to say the insurance girl called and spoke with a supposed supervisor at the insurance firm and they are going to consider my claims. I had asked 3 times why she hadn't submitted the claims and she didn't give me a reason. She didn't know that I had called them today and found out that they hadn't even submitted a claim. GRRRR! The dentist called while I was getting a much needed massage, I didn't answer, his whole speal on the phone was how great his billing person was and how she was going to work her hardest to get this resolved. Funny how that is not my experience thus far.....

Since I was having so much fun playing w/the blue cross people, then I decided I should call the Idaho blue cross people and talk about the 54k in outstanding claims that are sitting unpaid for the last 30 days. You don't even want to know how that convo went.
Nonetheless if you need insurance help I am more than willing to tango with you.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Thinking ahead MENU

This is what I am making this week. I have had to think a bit so that we aren't just eating Otter pops for dinner. here is what this week will bring...

Crock Pot Chicken and Rice
Boneless, skinless chicken breast (2-3 lbs)
Chicken Flavored Rice
Cream of Celery soup
Cream of Chicken soup
1 cup water
Put rice in crock pot, and water. Combine soups and layer on top of rice. Salt chicken and layer chicken in pot. Set on high for 4-5 hours
Breakfast in the slow cooker

1 bag (32 oz.) frozen hash brown potatoes
1 lb. of bacon diced, cooked and drained
or 1 lb. cooked ham, cubed
1 medium diced onion
1 green bell pepper diced
1 1/2 C. shredded cheddar or Monterey Jack cheese
1 dozen eggs
1 C. milk
1 t. salt
1 t. pepper (more or less to taste)

Place a layer of frozen potatoes on the bottom of the slow cooker, followed by a layer of bacon then onions, green pepper and cheese. Repeat the layering process two or three more times, ending with a layer of cheese. Beat the eggs, milk and salt and pepper together. Pour over the Crockpot mixture, cover and turn on low. Cook for 10-12 hours.
Chicken Tacos
Thaw 3 frozen chicken tenders, cut into cubes
saute in olive oil
add 2 tb spoons taco seasoning
and 2 tb spoons water heat thru
in a non stick pan, heat corn tortillas
layer chicken, shredded cheese, tomato's, onion and green chili sauce onto corn tortillas.
Slow Cooker Lasagna
1 pound lean ground beef
1 onion, chopped
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1 (29 ounce) can tomato sauce
1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 (12 ounce) package lasagna noodles
12 ounces cottage cheese
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
16 ounces shredded mozzarella cheese

In a large skillet over medium heat cook the ground beef, onion, and garlic untill brown. Add the tomato sauce, tomato paste, salt, and oregano and stir until well incorported. Cook untill heated through.
In a large bowl mix together the cottage cheese, grated Parmesan cheese, and shredded mozzarella cheese.
Spoon a layer of the meat mixture onto the bottom of the slow cooker. Add a double layer of the uncooked lasagna noodles. Break to fit noodles into slow cooker. Top noodles with a portion of the cheese mixture. Repeat the layering of sauce, noodles, and cheese until all the ingredients are used.
Cover and cook on low heat in slow cooker for 6 to 8 hours.