Multitude Monday - Aug. 30

I'm hitting the 100 mark today - not even close to my 1000-gift goal mark but I'm trying and not letting my own inconsistency get me down :)

Without further ado.....this week I'm thankful for:

#94. The chance to give Mica an airplane ride for her birthday. You can read the previous post for more details but needless to say, this was a very cool thing for a girl who already wanted to be a pilot. Her head is now FULL of things she wants to accomplish and I love to see that "I can do anything" attitude in her!

#95. The song Forever by Chris Brown. An odd choice possibly for me at this particular time in my life but the wedding dance video gives me hope and better yet - The Office version of it melts my heart. Today when I watched it I prayed that someday some man out there (preferably a farmer) would look at my daughter the way Jim looks at Pam in that episode.

#96. Peaches. Thanks Mom & Dad. That case of peaches was Delicious. I never got around to canning any of them - they went into many, many bowls of cereal, peach cobbler, neighbour gifts, fresh fruit snacks and most recently, a salad topping (peaches, balsamic vinegar, olive oil and a little sugar - yum!).

#97. My super-spiritually-sensitive son. He's having a few night terrors again recently and I'm sure it's stress and lack of routine and lack of sleep again....but in the middle of it, he prays like nobody's business and he begs me to read The Bible to him. We've had a few nights of sitting and reading Psalms that he doesn't remember later but I have no doubt at all that he's soaking it all in anyway and it's not going to return void :)

#98. Understanding friends. I love you guys. All of you. Thank you for letting me say NO this week to a few things. You know I'd love to have coffee with all of you and have all your kids down for sleepovers and go shopping with all of you...but thank you for allowing me the freedom to say, "no thanks...we need some downtime this week" and still being my friends :)

#99. Time to create. I have some deadlines for a couple of DTs I'm on for the end of August and last night for the first time in a month, I sat down and actually created something. It felt a little like coming home. There's a huge part of me that's been sitting on a shelf for a couple of months and yesterday was like taking a deep breath after having an elephant sit on your chest. Wow - that's a lot of analogy get the picture, right?

#100. I'm thankful for the ability to find Joy. Joy was my word of the year. I'm not exactly sure what I expected that to mean - that it would naturally drop into my lap at my command?? Funny...that's not how it works. But I'm thankful for the opportunities that do drop into my lap in which I can see and even choose Joy. I have laughed more and played more with my kids than I had in a long, long time. I have cried tears (good and bad) and just lay still and listened more than I had in a long time. I have worked and sweated harder and also just stretched out and rested more than I have in a long, long time. I find things to enjoy and I'm making a point of enjoying them when I find them.

Happy Belated Birthday Mica!

A few months ago in church I ran into a friend who's husband works at the local airport/flight school here in Steinbach and she mentioned that Harv, the owner, gives plane rides and often does birthday parties for kids where the birthday kid gets to actually "fly" the plane (ie: work the controls while he's there obviously). Mica was excited about the possibility and Trev thought it was a great idea...but the summer got away on us and we never did anything about it. Now this past week, Trev made the arrangements and we went out on Saturday for the flights. It was amazing. The little plane only holds 4 (Harv and 3 passengers). Mica sat in the front with Harv for both flights and Trev & Egan did one trip and Cale & I did the second flight. And yes, Mica did get to control the plane quite a bit - I'm sure Harv had his hands at the ready at all times but she turned and dipped and hopped a bit. So fun! She was convinced before this that she wanted to get her pilot's license but now she is 110% hooked. Cadets are in her future for this fall and she's dreaming of things she'll be able to do when she has her own plane. She's saving money for it already - while the boys are saving their money for DS games, etc...she's saving for a plane.'s a few pics.
Mica at the controls

Cale...a very willing passenger. He said no, he didn't want to get his own pilot's license but he was going to go flying lots with her once Mica got hers. Good networking, buddy!

Egan & Trev...the first brave souls to fly with Mica at the controls. Trev's comment later was that he was glad she only discovered the up and down controls at the end of this trip. She on the other hand, is hoping to fly trick planes - apparently she's got a stomach of steel.

An aerial view of our neighbourhood! Ours is third from the top on the right hand side of the street (brown roof, bungalow, playhouse in the backyard) By the way, would the person who has their car parked in front of our yard, please move it either forward or backward so that someone else (ie: ME) could park there too if I need to.

An aerial view of the elementary school - now we can see where all those stray soccer balls have ended up.

An aerial view of our church.

An aerial view of the Jr. High where Mica will go and where Cale practices football.

An aerial view of the Corn Maze outside of town, in case anyone wants to cheat :)

She could barely contain herself. If she was a squealer I'm sure we all would have had to take off our earphones in the plane but as it is, she just kept saying over and over, "This is so cool...this is sooooo cool."

so, sorry that it took so long honey....but Happy Birthday!

Clear Scraps Blog Hop With Unity Stamps

I personally have loved Unity Stamps for a long, long time. I don't own a lot of them...just a few I've collected here and there but when they agreed to swap product with Clear Scraps this term I was thrilled! The set that I got was called Love Bug. Aside from all the lovey-dovey word stamps in this set that I will use on cards for years to come....there was an adorable little VW Bug. And the words "Just Married" fit right into the space on the back of the car :) Could that be cuter? I cut some Making Memories metal into long strips, rolled them up into "tin cans" and attached them with string to the back of the car! The whole card itself is made of a 1/2 sheet of the 12x12 acrylic, cut with a paper trimmer, scored with my Scor-pal and Ta-da....a wedding card is born.

If you stumbled upon my blog accidentally, we're having a blog hop today starting and ending at the Clear Scraps blog.

Here's the list of blogs participating:

Grace's blog

Pinky's blog

Rita's blog

Hilde's blog

Irene's blog

Elisa's blog

Cathy's blog <<<>

Tonya's blog

end here: Clear Scraps blog

Oh, and I know there wasn't much competition on my blog this past month but I did offer a giveaway of some Clear Scraps stuff and the name I chose was Aleks! Thanks for commenting....I'll get in touch with you right away! Congratulations.

Blog Hop tomorrow!!

Join me and the whole Clear Scraps team for a Blog Hop tomorrow featuring one of our favourite Stamp companies: Unity.

You'll be starting here tomorrow at the Clear Scraps Blog. See you there!

Multitude Monday: Aug. 23

I am thankful for:

#86. Grace. Don't get me wrong...I love Mercy too but this week I'm particularly thankful for Grace and all the goodness that has come into my life this week at a time when not only DID I not earn it...there's no possible way I COULD have earned it.

#87. Neighbours. When we moved into this house we had determined to fix the house up and sell it within a few years. That thought lasted about a week until several of our neighbours came to greet us and brought us food and offered us everything from yard help to, 9 years later....I'm seriously moved to tears by my neighbours - some of the same "old" ones....some new ones, but all epitomizing the spirit of the word neighbour. Specifically you: T&L and K&J! I'm not sure I could move now if I ever wanted to.

#88. This new stove. I've been oven-less for over 2 months. It's fine I guess because lots of things can be done in the barbeque and microwave but muffins and cookies are a little harder :) and after a lot of seemed wiser to spend a little on a new one rather than spend about 3/4 of the price on fixing an old one.

#89. My thought jar. I'm not exactly sure if that's what it's called but a very dear friend and co-worker made this for me a couple of months ago - she wrote out many verses, quotes, thoughts, prayers, etc...that God gave her for me. At the time, the first one I pulled out was PERFECT. So perfect, in fact that I mulled it over for days before going in for a second one. The next one was the same - took days of savouring and soaking in. Then...after a week or so, I left it for awhile and almost forgot about it. This week though...I got up early one day, made myself a cup of coffee and pulled this into bed with me for devotions and I read through the WHOLE stack. I felt like I'd been starving and someone just handed me a bucket of KFC or something....I devoured the entire jar in one sitting. There was no way to roll them all up perfectly again so the jar looks like this now. I should have taken a picture of how nice it looked when she gave it to me. Thank you LG!

#90. This one in particular.
Here's one example of one of the "scrolls." I love reading scripture in this way - personalizing it, making it to God from me, or to me from God....reading it back to Him. I've been doing a lot of that lately. Seems like there are a lot of times lately I just don't have words of my own to pray.

#91. The quarterback. E's playing quarterback this year. Back-up usually but he ends up QB-ing a lot. He still likes running back better but he's really good at QB and it does my heart proud to see him - the youngest and smallest guy on the team, leading with such authority and precision. The team loves him and he gives them 110% every single time.

#92. Day 20. Don't ask me how but one of those aforementioned neighbours roped me into doing the Jillian Micheals 30-day shred. I haven't lost that much weight doing it yet but I really wanted to do it to kick start getting back on the treadmill for the new school season and I think it'll do just that. I'm thankful that it's day 20 today - tomorrow starts the new level and if the previews are any indication, I'm in for a whole new world of hurt tomorrow but for today.....I'm finding level 2 do-able.

#93. My bed. When we got this bed several years ago, it was so comfortable (well...considering we moved to this from 9 years on a futon - no wonder) and almost every single night when I climb in, I sigh in's so comfortable. Right now it's sporting brand new grey sheets, a brand new grey comforter, a green throw at the end for snuggling kids and an assortment of pillows and let me tell you - it's still the best place at the end of the day!

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Your Hands - JJ Heller

I love, love, love this song. If you have the time...let it load up and buffer or whatever it needs to do and then crank it up loud and let the truth soak in. If you don't have the lyrics below :)

I have unanswered prayers
I have trouble I wish wasn't there
And I have asked a thousand ways
That You would take my pain away
That You would take my pain away

I am trying to understand
How to walk this weary land
Make straight the paths that crooked lie
Oh Lord, before these feet of mine
Oh Lord, before these feet of mine

When my world is shaking
Heaven stands
When my heart is breaking
I never leave Your hands

When You walked upon the Earth
You healed the broken, lost, and hurt
I know You hate to see me cry
One day You will set all things right
Yea, one day You will set all things right

When my world is shaking
Heaven stands
When my heart is breaking
I never leave Your hands

Your hands
Your hands that shape the world
Are holding me, they hold me still
Your hands that shape the world
Are holding me, they hold me still

When my world is shaking
Heaven stands
When my heart is breaking
I never leave You when...

When my world is shaking
Heaven stands
When my heart is breaking
I never leave...
I never leave Your hands

JJ Heller

Multitude Monday: August 9

Late, but not completely missed this week...I'm back with Multitude Monday - things I'm thankful for. I have to admit - this has been, the toughest week of my life, so finding things to be thankful for has been an effort this week. Not that there aren't things to be thankful for....but sometimes the good are overshadowed by the not-so-good. they are:

#81. I used to wonder, because I'm so laid-back as a rule, whether the "mother-bear" in me would come out if I needed it to. It will. And it did. I'm thankful that God built that into me without me even knowing it was there.

#82. I'm thankful for this place:
My kids all went to camp last week and came back talking non-stop about the fun they had. I LOVE that they had an awesome camp experience this year - especially because camp was such a highlight in my growing up years!

#83. I'm thankful for this guy:

He was a 6-week-old stray that the vet took in and he needed a home or he'd be put down....I'm guessing this is no coincidence especially this week. My friend's mom even got him dewormed and vaccinated for us - another huge blessing.
My kids have named him Wasabi.
I call him "therapy-cat."

#84. I'm thankful for Habakkuk. I never knew you obviously...but I really hope to meet you someday my friend. God's Words through you have done more to heal my heart than you'll ever know. "Look at the nations and watch and be amazed. For I am going to do something in your days that you would not believe even if you were told" (1:5) and "the revelation awaits an appointed time; it speaks of the end and will not prove false. Though it linger, wait for it; it will certainly come and will not delay" (2:3)

#85. I'm thankful for this book:
Her story is not my story...but it profoundly touches something in me that wants desperately to make sure I'm OK even when everything around me seems not OK. I read the library's copy and then ordered my own copy and now my copy is dog-eared and highlighted to death.

That's it.
I'll work my way back up to 10/week next week, hopefully.


Multitude Monday - Aug.2

I missed last week because I was in Chicago.
From that, comes my #1 this week:

#71. I'm SOOOO thankful to be home.
#72. I'm thankful for my kids and their warm embraces when I've been away.
#73. I'm thankful for my job with Clear Scraps that allows me a "vacation" once a year and the opportunity to use my administrative and creative gifts all at the same time!
#74. I'm thankful for my God whose plans for me are plans to prosper me and not to harm me, plans to give me a hope and a future (Jeremiah 29:11) and who's thoughts and ways are higher than mine. I'm tempted to use this thankful tidbit every single week for the rest of my life...would that get redundant? Would it matter?
#75. I'm thankful for friends. I have a few who are ROCKS in my life and they know that in the next few weeks they will be called upon to anchor me. You know who you are and I love you guys.
#76. I'm thankful for summer camp. My kids are ALL going this week to the same place (the boys are bushwhacking further into the bush for Teepee camp but same location as my daughter. I'm praying that this will be a highlight in their lives like summer camp was for me!
#77. I'm thankful for a job in an "industry" (education) that isn't hard hit by any economic fluctuation. After my week at CHA I'm thankful I'm not completely relying on the craft industry to feed my kids. More power to the people who are and I'd love to be as much help as I can be to the people I work with...but that stress is not for me.
#78. I'm thankful for time. It's not always something I can beg, borrow or steal when I need it - but this week, with the kids all at camp, I'm looking forward to a little bit of it for me.
#79. I'm thankful for James. I still don't know if I consider it pure joy when I face trials of many kinds, my friend, but the more I read what you've written, the more I find my joy in expectation of what God will do through the trials I face.
#80. I'm thankful for today. It's not what I'd planned....but it's not beyond God's reach and neither am I.

Back home

I'm sure if you're reading this blog, you already know a little bit about me....and you probably know that I love to scrapbook. By "scrapbook" I mean everything from cards to layouts to altered stuff for home decor...almost everything. Sometimes, the project isn't important's the process that I love. When they say that it's cheaper than therapy, they're right.

(The house from the brand new Gingerbread Banner at Clear scraps: MM glitter letters, Viva Decor Eiskristall, Accent jewels, HS rub-ons and some chandelier beads from my MCC)

Well, one of the blessings that I've been afforded due to my involvement in the scrapbooking and craft industry is a job with a company called Clear Scraps. They make acrylic and chipboard albums, layout bases and embellishments for scrapbookers. I've been on their Design Team for 3 years and DT coordinator for 2 now. This past year when the company changed hands, the new owners (a lovely Christian couple from Colorado) offered me a little bit more of an administrative position including communicating with other companies on Clear Scraps behalf for DT swap products, editing and proofreading their materials and some marketing work. I've told them...but I bet they have no idea what a thrill this is for me to mix these two areas - admin and crafts :) Heavenly!

(The front and back cover from the new DIVA brag bag from Clear Scraps: painted with Claudine Hellmuth acrylic paint, punched and bound with the Zutter Bind-it-all and finished out with Cosmo Cricket paper and chipboard)

I just got back from CHA - the Craft & Hobby Association show in Chicago. It was a whirlwind of setting up the booth, working the show, assisting with a class to 100 women and tearing down the booth (in record time, I might add). I wish I'd had a little more time to wander the aisles and see all the other companies out there but it was very, very busy in our booth with sales and also doing make & takes. We had planned for 200 people and I'm sure more than doubled that by the end.

(The Christmas Tree mini from Clear Scraps, not done as a mini-album but broken apart and made into 6 individual Christmas tags: Ranger alcohol inks, Kaisercraft jewels, Cosmo Cricket sentiments cut from the front 'sample' page in the Jolly by Golly pack and misc. red ribbons from my MCC)

BUT, I'm home. And glad to be back. I missed my kids more than I thought and they've been uber-affectionate this past weekend so I think the feeling is probably mutual. On my art blog I'm giving away some of the acrylic that I've accumulated through Clear Scraps - if you're a crafter, come have a look!! If not, and you're just here for me (little old me).....come back tomorrow for Multitude Monday - I'm exercising my thankful muscles and putting it out here in blogworld to publicly, and intentionally focus on what I'm thankful for.

Clear Scraps Giveaway

I realized 2 things coming home from CHA.
1. Working in a booth doesn't leave me enough time to see everyone else's goodies.
2. I have too much acrylic at home :) Want some?

Tell me what your favourite new CHA releases were/are and I'll draw a name from the commenters to win some Clear Scraps acrylic from me....who knows...maybe 2 winners!!
I'll tell you one of my favourite booths that I did get to visit for a second or two was Viva Decor....they have some yummy new grass and stone texture pastes for scrapbooking. I had this card hanging in our booth - a cupcake from our mini-cupcake albums, covered in Viva Structurepaste, pinked up with Tattered Angels Glimmer Mist and shiny thanks to Glossy Accents.