Friday, December 30, 2011


2011 is almost behind us. Only one day plus a few short hours to go. Amazing how fast it went! The past twelve months brought lots of change and challenge my way, and I feel like I have learned a great deal and have had many opportunities for growth. I've learned, in new and amazing ways, that I can do hard things, and I am grateful for the love & support I've received and the many wonderful blessings I have in my life. So as another year draws to a close I thought I'd take a few moments and list some of the things that I consider to be gifts in my life. Some are big and some are small, but for these things I am most grateful today:

1. MARRIAGE. Rich and I will celebrate our 24th anniversary in about four months. I cannot even begin to consider what my life would be today without my sweetheart. Rich, you are the most kind, patient, and all-around decent human being I have ever met, and what an incredible blessing it is to know that you are my companion for eternity! And I also think you're kinda handsome and adorable...

2. MOTHERHOOD. Being a mom makes my life complete. The world changed forever on January 5, 1990 when I became a mother. Stephanie and David, although you are both now adults, you will always be my babies and I adore you! You both make me proud every single day. My girl and my boy, I love you!

3. FRIENDS. This year especially, I am grateful for my friends! You know who you are, and you save me in so many ways. You build me up, you strengthen me, you make me laugh, you make me feel loved, you make me feel important, you make me feel needed, you are there for me in good times AND bad, and you help make life worth living. Big hugs to you!

4. HOME. This word encompasses so much that brings comfort and security to my life: shelter, warmth, protection, safety, hot & cold running water, electricity, food, blankets, clothing... the list goes on. In a world full of so much uncertainty, home is such a blessing. And it's where I can be alone with the three people who mean the very most to me on the planet. 

5. FAITH. Oh, how thankful I am for my faith. It truly sustains me in times of great trial, and there have been a few of those this year! Truth is truth. Satan is powerful, but we are more powerful than Satan because we are God's children and all (whether we remember it or not) have chosen His plan. Satan only has as much power as we allow him to have. And I know that good WILL triumph in the end. "Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every other name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of the Father."  —Philippians 2:9-11

6. HEALTH. A healthy mind, a healthy body, a healthy spirit, a healthy relationship with my husband. For these gifts I am thankful.

2011, you have been a full year, but it's time to say good-bye. Now it's on to 2012... let's see what the future holds!

"We will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are gong to put words on them ourselves. The book is called Opportunity and its first chapter is New Years Day."  —Edith Pierce

(image above is a new unpublished design that will be available next year...)

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Our First Rocklin Christmas...

Here are some photos of the holiday decorating we did in our new-old home this year. My goal was to keep everything simple, classic, homey, and a little bit fun. What a wonderful Christmas it's been, what an incredible (long, trying, and wonderful) YEAR it's been, and we're looking forward to making 2012 even better.

"At Christmas play and make good cheer, for Christmas comes but once a year."  —Thomas Tusser

"Christmas makes me happy."  —Bryan White

Monday, December 26, 2011

Christmas Past.

What a wonderful Christmas holiday weekend it's been, full of great times with great people, yummy food, naps, gifts, movies, shopping, and the best thing of all, thinking about the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ! Don't you just love Christmas? Hoping to post more photos soon, but for now here are a couple of Stephanie and David, goofing off with the camera. One is a happy colored shot and one is what Steph called their "model" faces. They are silly. But they are my beautiful children and how I love them so! It's also been great having Rich home with us for a long four-day weekend! Love it.

This month has been a bit hectic with all we had going on, but I did manage to mail our Christmas cards on December 24. Never have I been that late before (that I can remember). Sorry, friends & family! And with having moved last January we kinda fell off the radar. Oops.
Okay, time to go finish some cleaning projects before bed. More later. Merry Christmas!

"Christmas is love in action. Every time we love, every time we give, it's Christmas."  —Dale Evans

"Let Christmas not become a thing
merely of merchant's trafficking,
Of tinsel, bell, and holly wreath
and surface pleasures, but beneath
The childish glamor, let us find
Nourishment for soul and mind."
                                          —Madeline Morse

"Love came down at Christmas, love all lovely, love divine. Love was born at Christmas; stars and angels gave the sign."  —Christina Georgina Rossetti

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Inn Keepers.

"Each of us is an inn keeper who decides if there is room for Jesus."  —Neal A. Maxwell, October 1992

Tuesday, December 13, 2011


December 13th already... goodness gracious, how did we get here? Our friends and neighbors the Wilsons invited us over last night for snacks and gingerbread house decorating. It was so fun! Joyce is truly an amazing hostess. Their house was decorated like a holiday wonderland in true Joyce style, Jerry read us the account of Christ's birth from Luke chapter 2, we had some yummy food, great conversation, a fun evening, and we came home with three snazzy frosted and candy-coated gingerbread houses. Good times!

Quote of the night was from JJ: "Christmas is a minty holiday." So true! Love it.

Ok, time for sleep. We're closing in all too fast on the last twelve days before Christmas. Are you ready? I am so not! But we are enjoying ourselves anyway. It's the most wonderful time of the year, after all!

"I wish we could keep some Christmas Spirit in jars and open some of it every month."  —Harlan Miller

Thursday, December 8, 2011


I can feel it. The days of December are starting to get away from me. I am behind. I fear that our Christmas cards may become New Year's cards, which will be a first for me. I did finally get my gift tags finished last night (hence the title of this post), so I can start wrapping presents today. Maybe. Cards will hoooooopefully get started next week. Maybe. We shall see...

Had a really fun belated-birthday night out with my lady friends last night. They spoil me and I love it! We ate tasty Mexican at ON THE BORDER, then went over to NuYo for some delicious frozen yogurt. I went with the pumpkin flavor, combined with a little chocolate. Yum.

So, this weekend is the big unveiling of the new 2012 Hero Arts Catalog! Exciting times in the Rubber Stamping world. will have the new stuff available soon... and yes, I am a little behind on that as I am behind on just about everything else in my life these days. Big sigh... we do what we can, right? Just trying to keep my priorities in order, first of which, of course, always, are the hubs and the kiddos. Being the wife and the mom is a lovely, wonderful, amazing, joyful (mostly) yet extremely time-consuming responsibility, but it's also the absolute greatest blessing in my life. 

Ok, time to run. Busy day! And as we all go on with our busy lives, let's always remember the true meaning of the Christmas season. Make it special!

"Christmas is not a time or a season, but a state of mind. To cherish peace and good will, to be plenteous in mercy, is to have the real spirit of Christmas."  —Calvin Coolidge

"I will honour Christmas in my heart and try to keep it all the year."  —Charles Dickens (Darles Chickens)

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Christmas in the Heart

December 3rd already? Oh my, Christmas is coming! We decorated our house last week and the preparations for the best day of the year have begun. This being the first Christmas in our new-old house, it was fun deciding what decorations to put up, where to put the tree, etc. It all looks kinda pur-dy if I do say so, and I just love turning on the tree and mantel lights every evening and enjoying the ambiance.

What an exciting time of year this is! I've been especially enjoying listening to my two new Christmas CD's (see THIS post for details). And as a side note, I had the privilege of emailing and speaking with the incredibly talented and sweet Mindy Gledhill herself this week! Made me feel kinda special, I will tell you that!

Oh, and the busy-ness of this time of year has certainly begun in earnest, but I love it. Several parties and fun things are already on the calendar and I am looking forward to it all! This weekend I participated for the third consecutive year in my dear friend Sydne's Holiday Boutique in Folsom, which as always was lots of fun! It's great to spend some time with old buddies and reconnect with people I don't often get to see. Lots of memories from our years in Folsom, and I thoroughly enjoyed myself, in addition to selling lots of fudge and cinnamon rolls in hopes of adding a little to my Christmas gift-buying funds. And I worked some sweet trades with some of the talented ladies and brought home some lovely things for our home and a few gifts as well.

Thought I'd share one of my new Christmas Clear stamp sets from Impression Obsession today (see image above). It's called Christmas in the Heart and you can get your very own set HERE. Very versatile... why not get one for you and one for your best stamping buddy! (shameless plug, I just don't know when to stop, do I?)

OK, well, I am running on about four hours of sleep so I think I will go put on my snuggly sweats and find a thick quilt to wrap myself in and watch a movie with my girl. Enjoy your Sunday tomorrow!

"I have always thought of Christmas time, when it has come round, as a good time; a kind, forgiving, charitable time; the only time I know of, in the long calendar of the year, when men and women seem by one consent to open their shut-up hearts freely, and to think of people around them as if they really were fellow passengers to the grave, and not another race of creatures bound on other journeys."  —Charles Dickens (aka Darles Chickens) 

"Christmas is the day that holds all time together."  —Alexander Smith