Tuesday, May 31, 2011

To Cheer You, Sketch #78

Hi everyone! Today the SSD DT is sharing our cards created with the last sketch from our fabulous May Sketch Artist, Danielle Flanders!

Isn’t this a fun sketch?! I think there are so many variations on what you can do with this sketch! You could use patterned paper, sewing or stamps for those dashed lines!

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Here’s my take on it!

For this card I used the flower image from Frills to stamp three rows across the card front. The sentiment is from Always Here, and the punched out butterflies are my pop of green inspired by The Play Date Cafe challenge!

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Skipping Stones is sponsoring PDC this week so make sure you check out what they made with SSD stamps! Then, make sure to visit the other "Stamp Tramps" to see what they created, or visit the SSD Blog!

Amy Tsuruta

Ann Kranitz

Barb Turpin

Brenda Weaver

Gladys Chia

Jennifer Ingle

Tammie Beaton

Wendy Jordan

Monday, May 30, 2011

Project 365: 5/15–5/28

It’s been raining for over a week now (snowing in some places of Utah) and the family is starting the catch the cough/cold I’ve had for the last couple weeks, ugh. I got it as soon as we got home from our trip and it definitely was a pain to deal with, but as you all know, you just keep “swimming, swimming, swimming, swimming!” :)

After posting an insane amount of pictures from our trip I took a little break from the blog-o to catch up on some work and home things. It was a nice break, but I’m incredible restless and wanting to get back into my krafty studio to whip up some cutie cards and scrapbook pages. You’d think the holiday weekend would have been that time, but unfortunately not as we had some other things to do.  I’m really hoping now that some things have settled down (like sports!), I can get a little more time to get back in the studio.

Today very much feels like a Sunday so here are the last two weeks for Project 365!

 

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5/15 – Delish Sunday dinner! Jake loves to try out new recipes, but he also loves to come up with his own ideas to test.  I love the Nuts About Berries salad from Café Zupas and this was Jake’s spin on that. Romaine lettuce with strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries, topped off with a raspberry vinaigrette and slivered almonds. Zupas does a poppy seed dressing and cinnamon almonds, but Jake went with a healthier alternative that I loved!

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5/16 – This woman in this commercial could seriously BE MY MOM!! It’s shocking how much they look alike! I’m tempted to have my Mom put on a blonde wig and take some photos so you could see the Doppelganger effect! ;)

For the sake of it, I just have to share a pic of her so you can see the similarities! Just imagine blonde hair, but the glasses, the nose, the lips….guh just all of it is so her! PS – this look she’s giving her husband in the commercial….such a look my Mom did to us growing up! ;)

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5/17 – Awwww, thanks Halls cough drop, I really need that! ;)  Having a cold is bad news, but these little messages on  my cough drops have kept me grinning and looking forward to the next one, ha! Another one I loved? It said “Go get it.” Kinda like carpe diem…yeah I like you Halls cough drops (strawberry flavor) and have that one pinned up at my desk.

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5/18 – My co-worker Daniel printed out this photo he took of Jake and I during our trip and brought it over to me that day. I still need to bring in a frame, but I love this little pic at my desk next to my old (slightly outdated, two year old) family photo and my little beach-in-a-box. Thanks Daniel!

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5/19 – Thanks Papercrafts! It was such a cool surprise to see my name listed with the other first time designers that were accepted in Card Creations 9 on their blog! Now, to find some time and submit more! :)

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5/20 – Totally unplanned event!! I was at my monthly stamp party and Debbie brought a yummo bottle of wine. A couple hours later a few of us decided it would be a good idea to go to the western bar in town, ha! I have never been there and even though I’m not a country fan, I will most likely go back just so I can ride this bull again! Thanks girls, it was super fun!

5/21 – Jake and Brady spent the day shooting archery at a tournament hosted by the league he’s in. He shot really well during the day and then we all went out for the bbq/potluck. This shot is of Jake and his Dad shooting in the “clay pigeon” rounds. They put three small clay pigeons on a target and the first team to break all three advances onto the next round. So not only is it about speed, but accuracy! It was a  fun night and we all really enjoyed ourselves!

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5/22 – Happy birthday to Callie! This was our present to Callie, a ton of Junie B. Jones books! Because really,what do you get a 9 year old girl these days that’s not just another toy? ;) She loved them!

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5/23 – Last game of the season, sad. Gwynie got to play shortstop and helped to cover 2nd. She loved it and decided she wanted that position during Fall ball!

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5/24 – A super cute note from my amazing husband on my steering wheel! I seriously don’t think I deserve this guy! He makes me want to be a better wife! The next day he left me roses in my office, what a guy! My friend Sharon commented on the picture I’d uploaded to Facebook that he should give lessons…yes, yes he should! ;) Now to work on my ten step program on how to be a better wife.

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5/25 – Closing ceremonies for Softball and for once no rain, yay!  The coach was saying all of their names and when he got to Gwynie he said the nickname he gave her at the beginning of the season “Smalls!” :) The girls all got their little participation trophies and her team also earned the Sportsmanship Award and got little pins.

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5/26 – My yogurt on the left, and my co-worker and office mate Jenn’s yogurt on the right. Anytime Jenn is eating out of this people always comment on the size of her large yogurt. ;) Really though, it’s buying in bulk and lasts her a week and a half, but still funny. :)

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5/27 – Lunch and pedis with the HR girls! Left Jenn, top Cammie, right Marki, and bottom me.  On Friday we worked through lunch and left a little early to enjoy some girly time. I work for the most amazing company!

5/28 – Spent the morning weeding and cleaning out the garage before it started raining again! I planted two pots to put on my front porch and loved the final result! Now, just have to keep them from dying….

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Just a note to say…

It’s time for another fabulous sketch from Skipping Stones Design!  We have sketches from the super talented  Danielle Flanders this month and I think Sketch #77 this week is so versatile you’ll be using it over and over!

Check out this fabby sketch! See what I mean about it being so versatile?!

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I pulled out Heartsong and the whole card is made up of stamps from this set!

I’ve loved seeing these little bird nests pop up all over the place so I finally had to make one of my own! I couldn’t for the life of me find my burlap so I pulled out some mesh instead. I punched out three circles and then crumpled them together to make the nest. Three pearls finished it off!

Make sure to visit the other "Stamp Tramps" to see what they created, or visit the SSD Blog!

Amy Tsuruta

Ann Kranitz

Barb Turpin

Brenda Weaver

Gladys Chia

Jennifer Ingle

Tammie Beaton

Wendy Jordan

Monday, May 23, 2011

Puerto Vallarta, Mexico–Day 5

Our final day in Mexio! Our flight was leaving at 4:20 pm, and the buses were coming to get us at 1:20. We also needed to check out of our room by noon, so we planned on getting up early and hitting the beach before we got all packed and checked out.

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We headed down to the beach around 8:30 and even though there was a little breeze, it was still pleasantly warm and perfect weather.

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Around 9:30ish we rotated our chairs around as the sun was coming up over us.

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One last long look at the palm trees!

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I’m pretty sure Jake feel asleep at some point on the beach, but who can blame him. ;)

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At 10:30 we headed back up to the room so we could shower and finish packing. I took a few more photos along the way of the courtyard.

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This moment was funny to me so of course I had to pull out my camera! To the left of Jake is his boss Bruce, and the other guy on the end is Jason and these three are all IT guys. At one point they were all on their phones (and Jake had mine) talking about a work issue. Probably doesn’t make sense to anyone else, but I seriously was laughing inside and they probably wondered why in world I pulled my camera out. ;)

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Our last pictures from Mexico…..down on the beach. PS – We’re twinners! Gray shorts, white shirts, black flip-flops…we’re cool like that. ;)

After checking out, having lunch and then waiting to board the buses, we went to the airport and waited for our flight. It ended up being delayed so we got home later than planned. I didn’t really take any other pics as we were at the airport, but I snapped a couple to finish off the trip.

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My first passport stamp! They didn’t stamp them when we went through customs in Mexico (sadface) so of course I had to document the very first one back in Salt Lake!

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The sunset in Utah

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Weird seeing snow on the mountains back home when the mountains in PV were bare. ;)

Seeing these two made my heart melt! They had called us on Tuesday night sad and crying because they missed us. Damn near broke my heart right in two to hear them crying, but I kept telling them we would be home soon and that I missed them too. Of course I was really enjoying myself and the time for just Jake and I, but man did I miss these two like crazy!

It felt so great to be home with our little family and to sleep in our own bed, but what an amazing trip! If you’ve made it with me this far then thanks for reading (or browsing the pics) along! We jumped right back into work and kids and life and I’m so glad to have the life I have. Loving every minute of it, and definitely appreciating all that I have. Feeling truly grateful to work for such an amazing company that recognized me and took us on such an incredible experience!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Puerto Vallarta, Mexico–Day 4.5

Continued from yesterday it’s the remainder of our day on our City Tour of Puerto Vallarta!

As part of our tour we had lunch in a small village. When I say small I mean small! The tour guide said they live a very simple kind of life, but they enjoy it. This little restaurant/café we had lunch at was perfect!

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I love the hanging bananas! After our lunch they told us we could pick one off for our dessert! They have a different type of banana in Mexico, and while I didn’t hate it, I certainly didn’t love it. Weirdly enough it seemed just a little too sweet whereas our bananas have a tart crispness to them.

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One one side of the restaurant I could see these chickens running around…see simple and small, but very cool village!

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Some pretty flowers hanging around the restaurant.

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Ed and Cammie

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Jake and I

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Chase and Daniel

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More gorgeous flowers around the restaurant.

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Cheers and drink! :) There was a guy going around playing songs and it was such a unique experience, loved it!

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Jake, Ed and Daniel had the beef kabobs.

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Chase had the Mahi Mahi (sooo good he let me have a bit and it was delish).

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Cammie and I had the chicken.

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Their sign cracks me up! The OK Corral… ;)

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A couple more flowers we saw, we loved taking pics of all the beautiful flowers!

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These boys were playing soccer (futbol) in the stream and had two sticks for goals posts. It really made me appreciate the simple life!

Our final stop on the tour was to a family run Tequila Distillery. Now, as already evidenced by a lot of photos I enjoy my beverages. ;) However, not a fan of tequila. I was still curious though and when we were told we’d be sampling five different types of tequila I was interested to see what the difference was.

**Let’s consider this next recounting of events a portion in which Kandi was very enlightened and  may or may not recount factual details as told to us by our very fast talking tour guide.

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I had no idea that tequila from Agave plants!! Ahhh! My Mom has a HUGE plant like this in her front yard!

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Rows and rows of agave plants. If I remember correctly (which I did because google helped confirm this fact) it takes at least 8-10 years before an Agave plant can be harvested to make tequila.

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The ends are cut off to make aloe vera, but it is the pina (pineapple in Spanish) that is reserved for making tequila and agave nectar. All the starches and sugars are contained in the center.

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The pina is then burned in a fire pit….

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……and then the fibers are put in this large circle. A donkey is tied to the wheel thing and walks on the outside to pull the wheel and crush the fibers.

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The juices all go down a drain into a separate collection container and the fibers are left out to dry and are used for ropes, etc.

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The juice then ferments and does something else….but I was staring around and missed whatever else he said during this part. oops.

 

Then it goes into the distiller with water, and he said a lot of scientific stuff that basically went over my head about proofs and the first batch is too high in something and they don’t sell that, blah, blah, then something about putting that stuff into barrels for six months or something like that. Jake could probably recite everything this guy said but I wasn’t entirely paying attention at that point. The technical aspect lost me. All I heard was they put it in adn magic happens a short while later. ;)

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So after he told us all this info, and then said you have to be certified to be a tequila distiller and that only person in their family is certified to actually do that part and I felt a little better that I didn’t understand it all. ;) So then came the time for testing. And when he talked about flavored tequilas I kinda perked up!

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Seriously, these three were so good. So good in fact I bought a mini bottle of the almond and chocolate/coffee/vanilla one. The first one we sampled (and teeeeeny tinnny samples) was the mandarin orange one, and you wouldn’t think it would be good, but wow was it ever! The next two were my favorites (as evidenced because I bought them) and he gave good ideas on how to serve them. Like having the chocolate one heated up and served over ice cream, or soaking cakes in the almond one. Oh yes, totally trying those out!

Oh and I realized I lied, we only tried four. The three above and then one of these above…not sure which, but it was their cheaper version that goes into Canadian barrels for six months. That made me cringe for sure. ;) They had us sniff it, and true, it didn’t burn your nose or throat which is a sign of a good tequila (because anything that does burn is never good right?) but I still cringed while drinking it. The higher version they don’t just let you sample, ha.

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And here’s some barrels that I’m not entirely sure if those were the Canadian barrels or not, but still cool.

Then we had to make the looong 2 hour bus ride back to the hotel without any stops. Before we kept stopping which was nice, now it was one long ride back, which, when you have a husband that gets motion sick playing first person/role playing video games, well I guess it was inevitable that he would get car sick. We were in the back of the bus (more room), driving on cobblestones and bumpy dirt roads and with an already pounding headache it wasn’t hard to reason that Jake would get sick. Luckily he waited until we were off the elevator and going to our room to puke over the sixth floor balcony. ;)

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We got back to the room after hoping no one saw Jake’s impressive projectile skills from the balcony (ha) and instead of an animal (pout) we had a seashell looking thing. Still cool, but I was less impressed by their towel folding skills. ;)

We went back to Pepe’s tacos tonight again for dinner. It was supposed to be our night to go out with the exec team, but Phil (our CEO) decided to do a taco eating contest and take everyone to dinner that night! (PS – Daniel is British so when he says taco it comes out tack-ko so now that’s how I hear it when I see the word, ha.) Sad to say I only packed away 11 of those scrumptious tack-kos (ok  not really sad I felt sick later that night from too much food) but as a group we at 582 tacos!!! The two guys that won it ate 36 each, wow! (You’re now hearing tack-ko in your head too, right?)

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Jake and I (maybe one of my favorites from this trip!)

After feeling like I was going to burst, and poor Jake only ate one because he still wasn’t feeling well from his earlier bout of motion sickness, we took a walk down to the beach and the boardwalk.

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Catching one last sunset.

 

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These are the same sand sculptures we saw from the bus earlier today! It was cool to see someone down there spraying the sand sculptures to keep them intact!

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We spotted the Hard Rock and I absolutely HAD to go! We didn’t go into the actual restaurant because we were pressed for time at that point, but I snagged a shirt!

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We boarded up the taxis and headed back to the resort. We hung out for a little bit, but by that point Jake was still sick and I was feeling icky from eating so much so we just walked down to the beach.

Really hard to see I know, but you can see some lights on the right side and the moon high over head. It was so peaceful to walk on the beach hand in hand under the moonlight. I remember thinking I was so lucky that I got to spend  the past four days with my best friend and we had such an amazing time hanging out together. Because at the end of the day, that’s what it’s all about.

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Our last night in Mexico wasn’t spent going to a wild night club or even hanging out at a bar on the resort. It was spent with just the two of us talking and being caught up in the moment. I couldn’t have asked for a better ending for our last night there.

Tomorrow – Day 5 and coming home to our fabulous kiddos!