Monday, January 14, 2013

Crafty Monday - Christmas Projects

Every year for Christmas, I try to make something for all of Katie's teachers / support staff at school. With so many to make, it is important for me to keep the cost somewhat reasonable while also making sure it is something that will look nice. This year I chose to make chipboard wall hangings. I used the pages from a 5 x 7" chipboard album, and some assorted patterned papers / journal cards from Echo Park and Simple Stories. I chose their Christmas paper packs, which included sticker embellishments. This enabled me to put the plaques together quickly because everything was already coordinated for me.

For Katie's homeroom teacher, I altered a frame so she could insert a Christmas photo after the holidays. I found this frame / matte set at Hobby Lobby, then covered the matting up with paper, decorated it, then reinserted it into the frame. She loved it!

I hope you enjoyed this first installment of Crafty Monday! Happy 2013.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Scottsdale Vacation

I grew up with warm weather at Christmas.
I've missed that.
We decided to take the kids out of the cold weather for a while during
Christmas Break this year.
We left on December 26.

We chose to go to Scottsdale.
We drove.
To Scottsdale.

On our way, we saw a beautiful desert sunset in northern New Mexico.

A couple hours outside of Scottsdale,
we hit a blizzard.
It was a complete white-out for a while.
We are lucky like that.

Then we saw an incredible sunset in Scottsdale at our condo.
It was amazing.

At night, the residents around the lake turned on their
Christmas Lights.
It was so pretty!

We spent our first day in Arizona in downtown Scottsdale.
This man was dressed as a statue.
He scared the stuffing out of Katie's mom.
It was pretty embarrassing until a great big tall guy 
screamed like a little girl, too.

Brendan rarely lets me photograph him any more
so this was a nice surprise when he offered to wear a sombrero for me.

 You simply cannot go to the southwest and not
photograph the peppers.
It would be a crime.

We went to The Sugarbowl for ice cream.
It was a hit with everyone.
Katie liked the pink wallpaper, booths, napkins, menus, etc.
The rest of us liked the ice cream.

We had a park behind our condo so the kids played for a while.
They also went to shoot hoops on New Year's Day.

Mr. C and I had a couple of days alone.
This is rare.
The kidlets went to Tucson with our niece and nephew-in-law.
We love them.
A lot.
While the kids were gone, we went to Taliesen West.

This was on Mr. C's Bucket List.
He was very excited.
I was just happy to have some photo ops.

By the way, I also attended a Stephen Hawking lecture
with him in Salt Lake City once.
My sainthood is guaranteed, I think.

It was really beautiful.

My favorite part of the property was this little garden behind the house.
It had a round door to the back of the property, and beautiful flowers.
If it wasn't in the desert (and therefore loaded with snakes),
I would love to stay right there forever.

When we got the kids back, we had the chance to see 
our dear friend Jan in Casa Grande. 
We love Jan.

We also have another dear friend who lives in Scottsdale.
Brant works at the TPC Scottsdale, Champions Course.
The guys went golfing with him on New Year's Day.
Then Brant came over for dinner
(Katie would've been devastated if he hadn't).
The next day he took us all on a tour of the Stadium Course and the
preparations for the Phoenix Open later this month.
This is the players' entrance on the 16th hole
AKA The Stadium Hole.

One of the rare moments I'm in front of the camera.

This is Brant and the kidlets.
Notice how happy they are?
They adore this guy.
So do we.
He is an amazing young man,
and such a phenomenal role model for our children.
We are blessed to know him.

The guys had a golf day on our last day there.
Katie and I went to get pedicures.
Then I was blessed to be able to spend some time with
a friend I hadn't seen in many years.
It was wonderful.

We left to come home on January 4.
We spent the night in Santa Fe, NM and nearly froze to death.
It was colder there than it was in Cheyenne.
Again - lucky.
We woke up at 4:45 am and decided to get the kids up early and head home.
They weren't thrilled with that idea.
But somewhere around Las Vegas, NM, we saw
this incredible sunrise.
And it was worth it.
Well, to me it was, anyway.
The kidlets didn't really care about the sunrise.

We had a lovely time in Arizona.
The locals kept apologizing because it was only in the 60s that week.
It was heaven for us.
We are now back home in the snow, wind, and cold.
And work, school, laundry, etc.
Katie told Mr. C that she wishes he could be
"Vacation Dad"
every day.
So does he.