New pillows.

I have some news.
We bought a new sofa.
And it’s not white.
You remember the leather sofa roundup I did a couple weeks ago?
Well I pulled the trigger, and by trigger I mean clicked a button, and bought one of them…any guesses which? It will be here next week.

I’m sort of shocked at myself that I bought a sofa online. That’s like picking out a mattress without laying on it first. What if it’s totally uncomfortable and not like the pictures at all? Good thing there’s a return policy.

In the meantime, I had to take one more pretty picture of the living room sofa that we’ve had now for about 10 years.

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My sweet mom / seamstress extraordinaire made these beautiful new pillows for our new bed.  One side is some green velvet I found in Tucson over 4 years ago.  The blue and white fabric I found here.  All the pillows in our home usually get collected and end up in one big pile on the floor to cushion the fall when playing Power Rangers.  So for a brief second they’re living on the sofa.

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My boys have been well instructed on how to correctly re-plump then karate chop a pillow after playtime.

New sofa and bedroom reveal coming soon!

Personalized tote bags made with Cricut Explore (and a breast story).

A few months ago I plugged the heck out of the new Cricut Explore machine.  I was honored to be amongst a group of very talented bloggers who were at the unveiling of this fabulous machine and were gifted a machine to play with and review.  You may have noticed that since that exciting announcement I have made no mention of my Cricut since…it’s been all crickets when it comes to the Cricut (no pun intended).  Let me take a short detour to explain before we get to the fun stuff.

Just a few weeks previous to Cricut unveiling I had found a lump in my armpit.  Great.  The doc immediately ordered an early mammogram to be done.  I did not one, but three separate rounds of mammograms, after which the tech and doctor did an ultrasound.   The doctor showed me several spots in my breast and said they would need to biopsy the area to see if they were cancerous.  It was a day filled with a lot of tears and fear…not my best day to say the least.  They took 8 samples from my breast (which resulted in a very uncomfortable recovery).  A couple days later I distracted myself with the Cricut unveiling while I waited for the results.

When the results finally came in it was revealed that I did not have cancer (phew)!  However, I had what are called Intraductal Papillomas which are best described as growths in the breast.  While at the time they were not cancerous they can develop into cancer down the road.  Um, no thank you.  I went to three doctors to get a 1st, 2nd and 3rd opinion.  Each one of them recommended having breast surgery.

During the surgery I had a large chunk of my breast  removed (no reconstruction).  Today I am superb and happy (and slightly fraternal as opposed to identical)  to have anything potentially cancerous out of my body.  You want to see where your faith is, go through that ordeal.  It was no picnic physically, emotionally or spiritually, but on the flip side I couldn’t be more grateful for the care I received (thank you Jake, mom and dad) and doctors who didn’t take the situation lightly.

That was heavy.  Time to switch gears…

Post surgery, I finally got around to taking my Cricut Explore out of the box and created my first ever project.

PicMonkey CollageUsing some vinyl iron-on matrial my Cricut cut a stock image I found online.  I then removed the negative space around it and ironed it on to a canvas bag.4men1lady 2No more loosing piano books between piano and home.  I had so much fun creating one bag for my son’s piano books I then decided to make more.

One of our downfalls is loosing library books.  They come home and next thing you know they’re under beds and mixed in with books on the shelf.

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Now, books come home in the bag, stay in the bag when they’re not being read and go back to the library in the bag.  No more lost library books (and expensive fines).

4men1lady 3Last but not least, the church bag.  Church is a lesson in patience and reverence for little kids (and most adults too).  Coloring books, crayons and quiet activities come to church with us every Sunday.  However, packing a bag every Sunday before church is time consuming.  Now we have a permanent bag that stays on the hook ready to go each Sunday.

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 As a mother I find if there is place for everything life is so much less stressful.  This pretty much sums up 90% of my day:

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I’m hoping my new organization bags knock that percentage down to 89%.

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I’ve reviewed a lot cool products in the past and I can tell this one is on my top 3 list.  This baby can draw and cut to your wildest imagination.  Check out this video:

I’ll be honest, part of the reason it took me so long to take it out of the box was 1) my little bump (or bumps) in the road and 2) I was pretty intimidated by the machine.  It looks complex and tricky but let me tell you…it is SOOOO user friendly.

I’m also taking part in the Cricut Design Space Star challenge team 7.  I didn’t participate last month but my team did awesome with an ice cream theme.  Once all our individual team member’s projects are up I’ll let you know what everyone came up with for our Geek Chick challenge.

Cricut-Design-Space-Star-250-copyIf you liked this project please like and follow me on Facebook Pinterest, Twitter and Instagram!

Chatbook photo albums.

Once in a while I get head over heels obsessed with something.
Chairs, drink carts, Ben and Jerry’s…
My latest obsession is a “Why didn’t I think of that?” idea.

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Before I start to gush let me first start off by saying I am in no way affiliated or sponsored by them in any way.
Now that I’ve made that disclaimer, have you heard of Chatbooks?
They are the most quick and easy way to make a photo album EVER!

Back in the day, 9 years ago, I got bit by the scrapbooking bug big time.
I would paruse scrapbooks stores and buy pretty paper, tools, stickers, you name it. I even subscribed to a scrapbook magazine and would study page layouts till the wee hours of the morning. The funny thing is it would take me an hour to complete one page. To this day I have 11 pages made of my first son. I didn’t even make it to his first birthday before I realized how impractical it was for me to scrapbook.  The time, the mess, the storage space.  Meh.  I have no photo albums made of our family or my kids.

Until now.

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I made these Chatbooks completely with my cell phone.  All the photos came from my Instagram account (which if you aren’t following you should).  The Chatbooks app pulled photos from my Instagram account then I selected which ones I wanted to be printed in each book.  It literally took me less than 10 minutes to compile and order 4 books.

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These books landed at my doorstep Monday and my little men haven’t put them down since then.  They have loved looking through the pages and reminiscing.

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And get this…each book is only $6.00!

I’m thinking about ordering a set for each son to take with them when they leave the house (when they are 40).  Or, how cool would it be to use as a portfolio of all your projects?

Each Chatbook is $6.00, 60 pages, 6″ x 6″.
How can you say no to that?