Friday, December 26, 2008

I Hope You Had a Good Christmas

I hope everyone had a good Christmas. Tim and I had a nice one with our friends. We always go to Christmas Eve service with our friends. I love singing the carols - though the Lutherans have different words and extra verses. I love the candlelight blessing on the steps of the church. After church, Tim and I came home and made fondue. Our cheese fondue separated, but still was tasty. The dessert one was to die for.

Christmas morning I got up and did my walk and Tim rode his bike. I made sausage balls and artichoke spinach dip to take to our friends. We always have a great time with them on Christmas Day. This year we watched Grease, and us ladies sang all the words while the guys just cringed. I came home with too many of the cookies I took. The leftover sausage balls went in the freezer and there is still some dip left.

Now really, who can beat all that good holiday food and spending time with friends?

The Christmas cards I sent this year were made with a clear transparency as the base. I used my Big Shot to cut the Top Note out of SU Creamy Caramel that I stamped for the inside and the little Ruby Red bird on the Old Olive ribbon on the outside. I love making and sending Christmas cards. And I'm all ready thinking about next year's design.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Santa's Workshop is Busy

I've been very busy crafting Christmas presents and tasty goodies. The bedroom project put me behind so the gifts I have to ship are going to be late. Last weekend I did get all 75 Christmas cards completed and mailed. I also spent some time in the kitchen making peanut clusters and Spritz cookies. I hope Santa likes the cookies.
During the week I have been knitting dishcloths. For a couple of ladies I work with I have boxes with two jars of the jam I made this summer, a dishtowel I purchased, and a matching handmade dishcloth. I've also been working on a pretty gift for my mother. I'll share pictures after Christmas because she reads this blog. This afternoon I can not put off any longer making aprons for my nieces and their dolls.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Holiday Card Production

I have the day off today (I worked Saturday) so I am busy working on my Christmas cards. I'm making about 75 this year, all one design. I've got all the pieces cut and this morning I finished all the stamping. Now I have to work on assembly. And addressing envelopes.

The other day I needed a bookmark so I grabbed a few of my supplies that were out for the Christmas cards and made this cute one. The base is SU Bordering Blue with Chocolate Chip. Then I used the Big Shot to cut out the little birdie in Ruby Red and added a piece of dark olive ribbon. I'm reading We Need to Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver. Shriver is an incredible author.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

First Day of School

This fall, my sister-in-law Nikki sent me the cutest pictures of my niece and nephew on the first day of school. Hannah's best friend lives next door and they ride the school bus together. Matthew still goes to preschool and he rides "the daddy bus". I had found the back to school paper and chipboard (the pencil, A+ and school bus) at Big Lots this summer and was waiting for pictures to scrap. I used SU Pumpkin Pie for the back ground of each layout and used Old Olive, Summer Sun, Brocade Blue and a touch of Close to Cocoa. On Hannah's page I added a little bit of ribbon and on Matthew's page I used some eyelets.

Friday, December 05, 2008

A Long and Busy Week

Tim and I celebrated our 15th anniversary yesterday. Love you honey. Since we took a big trip this summer we didn't have the money to go anywhere to celebrate our anniversary. So we both took the week off and stayed home and redid our love nest - sorry - bedroom. We picked out a new comforter and then pick the paint. We pulled the wallpaper off and scrubbed the walls. Then we primed and painted two coats. Tim also replaced a broken window. Then we pulled up the carpet and padding and I removed a bazillion staples from the floor and scrubbed the hardwood. Tim put quarter round moulding down. The room is almost back together but we did get to sleep in our bed last night. It was ALOT of work, but so worth it. I've saved our shopping lists, paint chips and piece of old wall paper for the scrapbook.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Brew Master

Here is the layout I made of Tim brewing his first batch of beer. He has made several different kinds and they have all been good. His first batch was a Strong Scotch Ale. He just bought a Canadian Ale that he'll start this week. He's all ready planning what he's going to have ready when my parents come visit in January.

For my layout, I started with SU Not Quite Navy and some More Mustard card stock. I also used some Paper Studio pattern paper. For the title and some embellishments I smooshed some bottle caps in my Big Shot. I saw the technique on Julie's Paper Trufflez blog and knew it was perfect for this page. See her tutorial here:

Friday, November 28, 2008


We had a wonderful Thanksgiving yesterday. I am so thankful for our friends who come and celebrate with us every year. I am so thankful they are good cooks. Patricia brought veggies and crackers and a cheese log, Ann brought stuffing and my favorite orange fluff. Karen brought potatoes, corn casserole and pumpkin pie. Tim and I made yeast rolls, cheesecake, green bean casserole and the turkey. Sitting around a table full of food with good friends telling stories is the best way to spend a holiday.
I used my SU punches and paper to make turkey place cards and a thankful bouqet centerpiece.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Some Cat Layouts

This is our Riley boy. He loves to get in baskets. He's about three years old and still very playful. Fred likes to chase balls around the house, but Riley prefers to play in baskets. The page base is SU Bashful Blue with some silver, white and black card stocks and a piece of shimmery kitty paper. I found some neat blue chipboard letters somewhere, so I used a "B" for the title and added some black brads and rub on letters. It's a very simple page, but I wanted to focus on Riley's cuteness.

Then there is Naughty Fitzie. As old and feeble as she is, she can still get herself up on the counter to nibble on a loaf of bread. I used SU Ruby Red for the page base and Certainly Celery for the photo mat and Bashful Blue for the journaling box that was cut with my Top Note die on the Big Shot. The title are various styles of chipboard letters and some are covered in pattern papers. And I used some metal edged tags with pattern paper in them for accents. One tag has a sticker that says " Obedience is highly overrated" which is perfect for a naughty kitty page.
Fitzie isn't doing to well these days. She's 17 years old now . We've started giving her wet cat food because she wasn't eating. And truthfully, I don't think she could get up on the counter these days - even for fresh bread.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

T-day Prep

This weekend we have been getting ready for Thanksgiving. We will be having friends over for dinner on Thursday. Tim and I are in charge of making the turkey and the dinner rolls. I might also make a cheesecake and some green bean casserole. Yesterday we worked on cleaning the dinning room. All of my scrapbook stuff has been put away so that we can eat at the table. Today Tim mixed some bread dough and I made rolls. I think we'll have to make another batch - I'd hate for anyone to go hungry. It was easy to do since Tim used the bread maker to mix and rise the dough. I took Tom out of the freezer to start thawing. We might have a small problem - I don't know if he'll fit in the roaster. And while Tim has been out riding today I worked on some place cards for the table.

Monday night we'll clean up the kitchen and get the nice china out and rinsed off. Wednesday night I'll make the cheesecake and prep the turkey. Thursday morning will be easy, put the turkey in the oven, make the green bean casserole in the crock pot and set the table. And wait for the guests.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

A Layout for Hannah

My niece Hannah is a little soccer player. I really like this page because it's girly and sporty at the same time - Just like Miss Hannah.

It's a cold day for us here in NC. We'll be working on cleaning up the house for Thanksgiving Day. My job is to clean all my crafting stuff off of the dinning room table. I don't think my guest really want to eat on the living room couch.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

More New Books!

In the last week I got two more new books in the mail. And I've been reading for my book club.

Gayle, at Every Day I Write the Book Blog, sent me a copy of We Need to Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver. Gayle hosts a book discussion on her blog - and you know how much I like to discuss books. For one of her previous discussions we read The Post-Birthday World another Lionel Shriver novel that I ended up really enjoying. So I have high hopes for this book.

And from Jennifer at Book Club Girl I got The Hour I First Believed by Wally Lamb - in hardback. When I was interviewing for my job here at SCPL 10 years ago, one of the interview questions was to describe a book I was reading. I had just finished I Know This Much Is True by Lamb. I guess I was so enthusiastic that the HR person interviewing me had to check out the book, and I was hired. So, needless to say, I have a soft spot for Wally Lamb.

My face-to-face book group here at the library just had our discussion of Wicked by Gregory Maguire. And for the first time in 10 years of leading book discussions, I got to be a participant. We had a guest leader who did a fabulous job of leading us through a very complex book. If you read Wicked just be prepared, you will not be reading just a re-write of The Wizard of Oz - it is much, much more than that. It's society, religion, good and evil, families, and friends. The picture is our our guest leader, Chris Bramlett, long-time participant Mary Frances Neal all dressed up as the witch, and me.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Bathroom Renovations

Way back in March, when I was gone to Minneapolis for the Public Library Association meeting, Tim renovated our bathroom. It was so nice not to be home while our one and only tiny bathroom was torn up. He took lots of pictures of his progress for me. When we moved into the house - is it 5 years ago? - the bathroom had green plastic tile and black wallpaper on the wall. The wall paper came down quickly. And the tile came down when we replace the tiny vanity for a pedestal sink. And then nothing was done for some time. We took our income tax refund and bought all the supplies - we had toilet and sink parts in the study and wainscotting in the dinning room. Now we have bead board wainscotting that Tim installed and painted - with base board and cap moulding. The top part of the walls he painted a soft green color. He installed a new toilet and new sink and base. We love our new bathroom. Thank you sweetie for such a nice bathroom.

For the layout I used a SU Old Olive and Not Quite Navy base. The title and journaling box are More Mustard. The accent papers are some old Basic Grey. I used a Sizzix die and my Big Shot machine to make the hammer and nail accents. And I also used some brads that look like screw heads.
Today is book club and we will be discussing Wicked by Gregory Maguire. A very interesting book. We are having a guest leader, so for once I get to be a participant. Can't wait to hear what everyone thinks about this book.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

My Home Town

Last night I went cropping and got two pages done. And today I'm going to another all day crop and have a lot planned to get done. The page I want to share with you today is one I made the last time I went cropping. It's a layout of My Home Town. One of the last times Tim and I were at my parents I took these pictures of the great building in town. There is a pink quartzite quarry at the edge of town so all the old buildings are made of pink rock. I have a pictures of the old bath house in the park, the old water tower, a corner building downtown, the old opera house, the band shell in the park and the theater. One picture I didn't get is the library. The base is River Rock with Groovy Guava. The pattern paper is Ginger Blossom. I used the Embrace Life stamp set to stamp the flower embellishments on Blush Blossom and Ruby Red.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Happy Mail

I just got a great delivery. An Advanced Reader's Copy of Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford. And the author even signed it! I read a great book blog at and Marcia, who writes great reviews, also gives away books. I've started reading it, because even though I'm at work, technically my job is to find good books to buy for the library and I have to read some of them to determine if they are good or not. Are y'all buying that? I'm expecting a few more books to be coming my way and I'll let you know what they are as I get them.

Our Boy is Driving

This is the first semester Dylan has been able to fit Driver's Ed. into his school schedule. He now has his Learner's Permit and was happy to show it off to us. I used SU black for the background and some SU ruby red and summer sun with my die cut machine to make the paisleys. The red pattern paper, journaling box and round stickers are from CM. The chipboard letters were a horrible orange so I inked them with creamy caramel and ruby red ink to tone them down. It was a simple page to highlight our new driver.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Celebrating 10 Years... the Stanly County Public Library. Yes, can you believe I've been working at one place for 10 years? It's a great place to work and I plan on staying a few more years. I wanted to take a little something into work to celebrate. I couldn't afford a big bakery cake with lots of frosting, so I looked for an easy recipe to make at home. I found a great recipe called Rickety Uncles - don't you love the name? The recipe came from a blog that I watch, called Whisk. Check it out here: It was so easy: melt 1/2 cup of butter and add 2 cups of oatmeal, 3/4 cup of brown sugar, pinch of salt, and 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla. Mix and put in an 8x8 pan. Bake for 20-25 minutes. See, it's easy. And tasty - I came home with an empty plate.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Book Review: The Invisible Wall

This week while I was at the Leadership Institute I read a good book called The Invisible Wall by Harry Bernstein. I got the book several months ago from the publisher I think. I was in the middle of reading lots of others things and didn't think I'd want to read this since it's a memoir. So I passed it on to my book club. It turns out that there were several copies of the book floating around book club and I kept hearing how great the book was. So I managed to get my copy back. At Leadership Institute there was no Internet, no TV and no cell phone, so I was able to read the whole book in just a couple of days. We only had a few hours of free time in the evening, but the only thing to do was read - and I knit half a dishcloth.
Harry spent his early years in a small English mill town. On his street, Jews lived on one side and Christians on the other side. The book tells about his growing up years and the interaction of the neighbors with the invisible wall running down the middle of the street. It was very well written, and the story moved along quickly. It ends with the family moving to America. There is a second book that I'm dying to read. Harry was 96 when this book was published.
It's a fascinating book and I do recommend it. If you not a big non-fiction reader, it reads like fiction.
The big outcome of the Leadership Institute is that I created my personal statement of leadership purpose. And I'll share it with you since it took a lot of hard work to create. I even have it memorized.
With patience, communication and teamwork I will create an environment that is fair, fulfilling and offers on-going training so that library staff can have and provide positive customer experiences.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Dylan Getting All Grown Up

Here is another layout of Dylan - can you believe how grown up he's getting. When we were home in September we drove down to the Land Between the Lakes area. We stopped at a pull out right before crossing the Kentucky Dam. There were lots of sailboats out on the Kentucky River that day. Tim took this picture of Dylan just sitting there. I used Night of Navy as the page base and some sage shadow for the photo mat and the pattern papers and coordinating tags come from Creative Memories. We had a nice day together

Friday, October 24, 2008

Another Bike Layout

Several weeks ago Tim and I went bike riding. It had been awhile since I had ridden, so we went to the Greenway in Charlotte where they have nice paved paths. We had a nice ride. And we took a couple of silly pictures of ourselves to prove it.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Pretty Easter Dresses

This is my lovely youngest niece, Sydney at Easter this year. The girls Grandma Carlson bought then beautiful Easter dresses. And the girls wore them even though there was about 6 feet of snow on the ground. The girls wrote a note to the Easter Bunny and he left them a note in return. I'm going to color copy the notes and slip them behind the photo and pattern paper on the right side. I think I used one of Sally's sketches for the left side of the layout. The background is light purple and the pattern papers are black and white. You can't see from the photos (click on the photo to make it bigger and you can see all the details) , but there are some rhinestones on the pages for a little bling.

Even though Miss Sydney looks beautiful and sweet in her Easter dress, she is a little rough and tumble tomboy. She loves to play on the monkey bars. Last week she took a big tumble and broke the two bones in her left wrist. She got a full arm cast. Yesterday when they went back for a checkup, they discovered she also broke her right arm. Sydney is going back to the hospital today to have another cast put on. So everyone, please think good thoughts for Miss Sydney today.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Help Me, I Need a Name

I'd like to introduce you all to Not Fred. He got his poor name because we would see him out in the yard and think it was Fred - but it was "not Fred". Tim has started feeding him and petting him. So we've decided he probably needs a real name. No Mom, he won't be coming in the house if I have anything to say about it. We'd like to hear suggestions for a real name for this guy - yes, he is a boy. So, everyone, let's hear your suggestions - and ask your kids, I want to hear their ideas too.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

A Lovely Fall Sunday

Sunday was a beautiful day with lots of sun and cool temps - it's finally fall in NC. I had a nice walk with my friend Patricia while Tim was off riding his bike and then he mowed the yard and I planted a bunch of daffodil bulbs that my boss graciously gave me. For dinner Tim grilled some pork tenderloin with our house seasoning - garlic powder, onion powder and black pepper. I looked through my recipe collection for a side dish and found this recipe for Broccoli Stuffing - I'd call it more of a broccoli casserole. But it's definitely a make again dish for us.

Broccoli Stuffing
2 (16 oz.) packages frozen chopped broccoli
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
2 eggs, beaten
1 onion, minced
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1/2 cup mayonnaise
10 oz. dried stuffing mix
1/2 cup butter, melted
Preheat oven to 350. Cook broccoli according to package directions. Lightly grease a large baking dish.
In a bowl, mix the cheese, eggs, onion, soup and mayonnaise.
Arrange the cooked broccoli in the prepared pan. Pour cheese sauce over the broccoli. Spread the stuffing mix over the sauce. Drizzle butter over all.
Bake 30 minutes until bubbly and lightly browned.
12 servings

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Dylan's Favorite Things

This spring when I was visiting my nieces in Michigan I asked them what were their five favorite things. Sarah wrote hers down for me and Sydney dictated her list to me. I've shared the scrapbook pages I did for them. I wanted to do the same project with Dylan, but I changed it up a bit and asked him to take his own pictures of his five favorite things and email them to me. He was able to send me pictures of four things, his fifth favorite thing was his cat Kalypso who ran away while he was taking his pictures. It's taken me several months to make this page for him, but here it is. Oh - and his five favorite things are: Kaylpso, his music, his computer, his game consoles and Mr. Leohr who is his computer teacher - who is just the best teacher evre Dylan says.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Simply Racing

This is a simple page I did of Tim's Off Road Assault on Mount Mitchell. I used the course map and elevation chart as backgroud paper. Some one at the race got this nice picture of Tim in action. And with a quick roll of the tire tread stamp my page was done.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Aspen Gold Readers Choice Award

One of the great perks of my job is that I have gotten involved in judging several romance writing awards. For the second year I have been a judge for the Aspen Gold Readers Choice Awards for published novels. This annual award is sponsored by the Heart of Denver Romance Writers Association. I was sent signed copies of the three finalists in the Historical Fiction category to read and score. Under their scoring system a 1-2 is Below Average, 3-4 is Fair, 5-6 is Good, 7-8 is Great and 9-10 is Outstanding. The books I had to read were: Untouched by Anna Campbell (2), Lady Be Bad by Candice Hern (7), and His Favorite Mistress by Tracy Anne Warren (9). I liked the Tracy Anne Warren book so much that I'm going to read the other two in her series.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Happy Birthday Tim

Sunday was Tim's birthday. He got to celebrate by riding and hanging out with his friends. Our friends who recently got married in Canada were home for a wedding reception, so Tim got the chance to ride with his friend Mike. While he was out riding I made him this cute owl card. I had stamped a card for him on Saturday when I was cropping, but it just wasn't right. So Sunday I went looking on SCS for some inspiration and found this cute owl made using the SU punches.

And send some good car karma thoughts this way - the Buick is on it's last legs.

Monday, September 29, 2008

It's Banned Books Week

Please read a banned book this week and use your First Amendment right to read.

Tonight I will go home and read some more from J.R.R. Tolkien's Lord of the Rings series. I'm currently reading volume two: The Two Towers. In 2001 Christ Community Church in Alamagordo, New Mexico burned Tolkien's books as satanic. My interpretation of them is that they have a lot of Christian themes.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

The Scrapping Librarian ... Reads

I just want to let everyone know that I'll be posting more book related posts in the future. I had thought about starting another blog just about books I'm reading, but I have a hard enough time keeping up this one and the one at work in addition to reading and scrapping. And after all, the word "Librarian" is in the blog title, and librarians do read, so I figured this blog was as good a place as any to talk about books. If you don't want to hear about books, just skip the book posts and keep checking for the scrapping and card posts. A few things that will be coming up: the Aspen Gold Readers Choice Awards, Edgar Sawtelle and Run.

Home is the Best Place to Be

We are home from our weekend in Kentucky. Dylan's 17th birthday was at the end of August and this was the first weekend we could get away to see him. On Saturday we drove down to the Land Between the Lakes so Tim could check out the riding trails. Dylan and I hung out and he wandered in the woods. Sunday we stayed at the house so Tim could see several of his brothers who stopped by. The pictures I took aren't all that great, so hopefully Tim did a better job - I know he got one of Dylan with his driver's permit.

Friday, September 19, 2008

The Perfect Spot

Last Friday night was my friend Judi's monthly crop. I got 2 pages done and a good start on 2 more. The Perfect Spot has pictures of the three cats - Riley, Fitzgerald and Tarzan - all resting on the back of the couch. They all loved that spot on the couch so much that we were able to get a picture of all three of them up there. I've been carrying around this paper and these pictures for a long time - notice we bought our new couch this winter and moved it to a different spot. I love how the page turned out.
For dessert for the crop I made some Chocolate Chai Cupcakes. I got the recipe from the Land O Lakes web site. I wasn't real happy with how they turned out - the cupcakes were dry and I didn't like the frosting. But I did love using the new Kitchen Aid to make them. Judi is having a Fall theme for next month's crop, so I'm looking for a dessert idea - maybe something with pumpkin.
No scrapbooking this weekend. We are off to Kentucky to see Dylan and celebrate his 17th birthday.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Happy Birthday to ...

My darling little nephew had a birthday on Saturday. He is all little boy and loves trucks and tractors and heavy machinery of all sorts. He told his Grandpa that he wanted a quarry for his birthday. Or a real dump truck. Darn stinkin' cute kid. When the SU By Land set retired last year I bought it specifically to use for Matthew. I've used it for several birthday cards and for a scrapbook page. I'm sure I'll get a lot more use out of it. The wheel stamp I bought to use for Tim's biking pages, but I get a lot of use from that stamp too.

And Me -
I have the pleasure of sharing my birthday with Matthew. This year, Tim bought me a Big Shot die cut machine (ok, he really didn't buy it for me - I bought it for myself). This is the newest toy - I mean tool - available from Stampin' Up. Die cut machines are fairly expensive and there are several different types. I had never been willing to make the investment. But this summer, SU started offering this one, and they have a good price. The machine came yesterday, but I'm still waiting on the dies that were included with the purchase. My wonderful friend Judi lent me some of her dies to play with. This is a great little machine and so easy to use. I also bought the cute doctors bag to carry everything when I go to crops. I don't think our Christmas cards will have any stamping on them this year - I think it will all be die cuts.

There are still a few more birthdays coming up this month, so I need to start making some more cards. I'm sure I'll be using that wheel stamp again.

But now I have to go to work. I have book club this morning. We are discussing The Tortilla Curtain by TC Boyle.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

The Birthday Season Begins

The Birthday Season begins for us at the end of August and goes until the end of January. Between Tim and I, almost everyone in our families has birthdays and anniversaries during this time. Maybe this holiday weekend I should sit down and make up a stash of cards to have on hand so I'm not creating at the last minute.

Last week I sat down and made a couple of cards that were needed for this week. Since it had been awhile since I had done any card creating, I needed some inspiration to get me started. I came across a color challenge on Kristina Werner's blog,, to use black, white, grey, and a small amount of any other color. I needed to make a card for Dylan, so thought this would be a great color combination for a boy. Instead of using grey I used some silver paper I had - Dylan loves sparkly things - a strip of black and a strip of white. I used a circle of orange for my accent color and punched a black star and a black tab. A silver star eyelet and two silver brads accent it all. No ribbon because he's a boy. Actually, at 17 he's not a boy, he's a young man.

While I was at the craft table and had this basic color scheme in mind I made a card for my friend Karen. It's a great color scheme that will work as well for a masculine as for a feminine card. For Karen's card I also got inspiration from Beate's sketch #54, It's white for the card base with a strip of black that I scallop punched and punched eyelet holes. The large scallop circle is Cool Caribbean and I again punched eyelet holes. There is no stamping on this, it's all SU's rub-ons. I added some sparkly silver ribbon and turquoise rhinestone brads for some bling.
I hope everyone has a great Labor Day weekend. I'll be laboring on cards for the Birthday Season. And a big Happy Birthday to Dylan and Karen.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

I know, it's been awhile. We physically got back from vacation, but I think my brain stayed up in BC. Tim brought back a cold as his souvenir and shared it with me and that didn't help. But I feel like I'm back in the swing of things. I sat down and made a couple of cards this morning which I'll share with you later - after certain people's birthdays have past.

Tim and I had a wonderful weekend together this past weekend. The weather was great so we spent lots of time outside - none of the time working in the garden. Fay is here right now giving us lots of great rain.

On Saturday, he went riding at Sherman Branch park and I went along. I took some books, but didn't read them. Instead I went walking/hiking the trails and took some neat pictures. I've got a great idea to scrap some of them, so hopefully I will have a neat page to show you soon. After lots of fresh air and sunshine, we drove across Charlotte to the home brew store. Tim picked out a couple more beer recipes to make, so brewing will begin again soon. To end our nice day together, we had dinner at our favorite restaurante - El Ranchito.

After a slow start on Sunday we drove back into Charlotte to McAlpine Greenway. And I actually rode my bike! Had a great ride of about 6 miles. I felt great. I'm really looking forward to getting back on my bike. I've run into several old riding partners lately, so I'm taking that as a sign that it's time. And Tim was very happy to get my bike out and get it tuned up for me. After our nice little ride, we went to another favorite place for lunch - the Chicken Roasting Company. We don't get to go often enough because it's in Charlotte.

I was also able to get some reading done this weekend. I'm reading some books to judge for a romance writers contest. I've also received a few complimentary copies of new books from the publishers and from several book bloggers. I'm thinking about starting another blog where I will review books. I don't know that I want to post reviews on the library blog, because that blog is not really just for fiction reviews - it's for library news. And I don't want to post lots of book reviews here - I know lots of you would be interested, but this really is more for my crafting stuff with occasional food and books. I'll be sure to let you know if I do start another blog.

Watch here for upcoming birthday card posts and hopefully some more scrapbook pages.

Saturday, August 09, 2008

Last Day

It's a rainy day today. Tim has gone to check if they are riding down the mountain today.

Here is the view from our balcony this morning.

The wedding yesterday was beautiful. It was held on Whistler Spit of Green Lake. The weather was perfect.

The first full day we were here Tim and the group from Charlotte did a cross country ride.

While they were out riding I wandered around the Village. I managed to find the Public Library. It's a new building and it's fabulous.

It took a full day of traveling to get here. A delay leaving Charlotte made us late getting into Dallas. The airline met us at the gate with a van to drive us across the runway to make our connecting flight to Vancouver. Customs took some time but we had no problems. The Vancouver airport is under construction - they are getting prepared to host the 2010 Winter Olympics. We got our rental car and headed through downtown Vancouver traffic to the Sea and Ski Highway. The view on the drive up were incredible.

This has been the best vacation.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Vacation Here I Come

What does a librarian take on vacation? This has taken a lot of thought - I want to have enough to read, but I don't want to add too much weight to my bags.

The Bridge of Sighs by Richard Russo. Tim and I started listening to this on audio and both enjoyed it. We weren't able to finish listening to the entire thing (it's about 21 CD's long) so I am taking the book so we can finish.

Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers by JRR Tolkien. This is a book that Tim loves to read. I have never read it, but I love the movie, so I'm going to give it a try.

That makes two books we'll both be able to read. I also plan on downloading The Tortilla Curtain by TC Boyle onto my MP3 player. My book club will be discussing it this month so I need to get it read.

And, of course, we have a Vancouver/British Columbia guide book.

And that's what a librarian takes on vacation. We aren't forgetting to take our cameras - don't worry - there will be pictures.

Farmer Tim

I do believe I promised to show you Farmer Tim - and here he is. He borrowed the tiller from our friends Steve and Karen and tilled up most of our backyard. I think he just wanted to get out of mowing it. Tim selected all of the plants and seeds one Saturday while I was at work, and then got everything planted. He's been the one to diligently water most evenings and do the harvesting. We learned a lot with this garden - what needs to be planted early, what needs to be planted later, and things like what blossom end rot is. We are already planning for next year's garden. For this page I used a bunch of the vegetable tags from the things we planted. For the title I used several different tags. I even stamped some leaves in green on green and cut them out. The journaling is hidden on the yellow paper at the top of the page and tucked behind the photos.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Favorite Things

This weekend Tim went to the mountains to do the Off Rod Assault on Mt. Mitchell. 68 miles and many feet of elevation changes in 9 hours and 15 minutes. He had a good time.

While he was gone I went to a crop with my friend Judi. We sat next to Nancy and Wendy and just had a blast. Nancy gave me some great ideas for the pages I was working on and she graciously shared some of her supplies. In only got two and a half pages done, but I love what I got done.

When I was visiting my brother and his family in March I had both of my nieces tell me what their 5 favorite things were and I took a picture of each of them. Sydney was wearing a maroon-y colored dress that I've been having a hard time coordinating colors with. I was so excited to find the perfect papers from Creative Memories. The ribbon on this page came from my friend Judi and the great maroon flower came from my new friend Nancy. I used some pearls and crystals out of the Stampin Up Pretties kit. I can not believe how beautiful this page turned out. The tags that are threaded on the ribbon are Sydney's favorite things: Friends and Family, Teachers, Dressing Up, Ice Skating Show, and Dance Show.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Just call me Suzy Homemaker

I don't know what's gotten into me this summer. First I decided I needed to make cookies - and I never make cookies. Now I'm making jam and freezing tomatoes. Just call me Suzy Homemaker.

One of my co-workers was kind enough to bring me a bag of plums. I spent about 15 dollars on cute little jars, Sure-Jell and sugar. And now I have jam. It didn't set up as nicely as I wanted it to. But it's pretty tasty and I did it with no special canning equipment. Yes - I'm proud of myself.

We are starting to get tomatoes out of the garden. We've had an issue with blossom end rot, and Tim is treating that, but we are still getting a good edible crop. Instead of just freezing them plain, I am roasting them with garlic, onion and olive oil. I'm using my friend Melissa's recipe ( I just cut up the tomatoes, add some chopped garlic, and chopped onion (I cheat and use the frozen kind), drizzle all with olive oil and bake at 300 for about 2 hours. It's so good that Fitzie helped herself to the last batch.

Next time I'll post about Farmer Tim.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Not All Business

Guess it's time for another scrapbook page. The butterscotch oatmeal cookies were very good by the way. I made this layout about my trip to Minneapolis in March. I got a grant to go to the Public Library Association meeting, but I was able to extend my trip and visit lots of family and friends. My friend Judi made the little booklet that is in the middle of the right hand page. It's a travel journal made of library cards and library pockets - get it? Library conference, library cards and pockets? There was one pocket and card for each day for me to jot down notes and memories. So I put the entire journal on the layout and included a variety of pictures from the whole trip. I had so much fun seeing my extended family and old college roommate. Plus the library conference was so inspiring.

I have book club this morning and I just finished the book. We are discussing a memoir: Stolen Lives: Twenty Years in a Desert Jail by Malika Oufkir and Michele Fitoussi. So what should I read next? People of the Book, which my online group has just finished discussing or The Story of Edgar Sawtelle which we'll be discussing in a few weeks?

Monday, July 07, 2008

What a great weekend.

We had a wonderful 3-day weekend to celebrate the 4th of July. It was so nice to stick close to home and spend some time together.

I got to started my holiday on Thursday evening when I drove to Matthews to buy my new toy - a Kitchen Aid 5-qt. Artisan stand mixer in red. Friday morning I put it to use making Cindy McCain's Butterscotch Oatmeal cookies. I like the oatmeal cookies better than Michele Obama's shortbread cookies. But everyone at the cookout liked the shortbread better. I don't know that I've heard Tim say which he likes best.

We had our traditional cookout with our friends the Grochowskys. It was such a nice evening - good food and great company - and fireworks. We were so relaxed that I didn't take any pictures.

On Saturday, Tim started brewing his beer. It is fermenting away in the dinning room. I think it will be a couple of more weeks before he starts bottling. I need to work on stamping some labels for the bottles. Isn't it sweet that we can combine our hobbies?

And now it's back to work. I hope everyone had a great weekend.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Honoring Freedom

This is the week we celebrate our freedom. Friday we'll be grilling with friends and shooting off some fireworks. I'm planning to make grandma's macaroni salad and some cookies. Tim is going to buy the fireworks tonight. We can't wait to get together with our friends.

I made this page this weekend for a VSBN challenge on SCS to scrap someone in the military. I've done a nice page about my Dad being in Berlin, but I hadn't done anything for Tim's Dad. Tim had to call his brother Brent to see if he had any old photos scanned and Brent was able to email Tim several old photos of their Dad in uniform. In place of journaling, I used a newspaper story about James' service and being captured by the Germans at the start of the Battle of the Bulge. The title is simple chipboard that I embossed in white to give the page a red, white, and blue color scheme. There is a circle of stars under the title that I made by punching the shape out of a transparency and edging with white ink. The page is very simple to highlight the meaningful story of James' service to our country.

Happy Fourth to everyone and thanks to all who have served our country in peace and war.