Tuesday, September 30, 2008

(put the theme song to Rocky in your head...)

Ladies and Gentlemen....gather around...for I am about to introduce you to the GIVE AWAY of a lifetime!! Mana Moon Studios is approaching her 100th sale on Etsy and she is hosting a FABULOUS give away on her blog page. YYYAAAAAHHHHHHHHHH (the sound of 20,000 fans screaming in the stadium). The lucky winners will receive a Woven Wire Beaded Bracelet from her Treasures Shop (I own some of her jewelry and I will promise you this...YOU WILL NOT BE DISAPPOINTED).

The rules are simple so go check them out at http://manamoon-studios.blogspot.com/. Sharon is so sweet that she will DOUBLE YOUR CHANCES TO WIN! How?? Weeeelllll....go to http://manamoon-studios.blogspot.com/!
For those who do not know Sharon, she is a fabulous woman, mother, wife, and friend. She sports a halo the size of Mother Earth and her heart cannot be measured for it grows larger every day! I am one of the fortunate people who know Sharon and proudly call her my friend. Once you meet her, she will forever be in your heart.
SO...what is the contest?? (*whispers: 100 Sales Give Away). Where do you go to participate?? (*whispers again: http://manamoon-studios.blogspot.com/). Great! See you there :-)

Monday, September 29, 2008


Yes, you read it correctly....a shrimp eating contest! For the past three years, my husband and our two boys hold an annual shrimp eating contest (the winner takes home bragging rights). And what do I take home? The memories of having to sit in a boot for 2 1/2 + hours at a time waiting for the animals to finish grazing on the poor little shellfish.

It sounds gross (because it is) and I'm thinking this must be a man thing?!? BUT I am the fool who attends every year keeping score and taking pictures. I do admit that this year was a little exciting because Ryan joined the contest (Ryan is my oldest son's best friend and a very dear family friend).

I will show pictures!!! No worries, I have only posted the "clean" pics so you don't loose your appetite!

- This first picture is of the three boys (from left to right): My youngest son Cody, my oldest son Corbin, and Ryan (we call him Gigantor. The boy stands 6'2". That's a giant next to me at 5'1")

- I cannot forget a picture of me!! My son snapped this one during a brief grazing break. I couldn't help but post it because I love the expression on my face. Whatever it is you are thinking of what I might be thinking....you're probably right. Notice the hair pulled back...Debi can tell you that once the hair is pulled back I'm ready to GO! I cannot tell you how many games of Jeweled I played or how many cups of coffee I drank , but in the end, I'm the sucker who agreed to attend :-)

- They are all smiling here after mowing down a gazillion shrimp (love the bibs)...but when the camera was put in its case, the smiles quickly disappeared and out came the sparkling mineral water!!

- Finally, the big winner...my husband. YEP, he won. Not only did he win but he beat his score from last year; I would only know this because I am the lucky score keeper! Since he was the winner, I felt it would be nice for me to pose with him. Again, notice the look on my face... it is a look of exhaustion yet joy because NOW we can leave!!!!

A total of 610 shrimp were eaten tonight between Paul and the boys with Paul in first place eating 175 shrimp, Ryan in second with 172, Corbin in third with 138, and Cody took last with 125.

- I think the real winner was the restaurant! What you are about to see may be ugly so, if you have a weak stomach, look away.....OK, it's just the receipt but it sounded funny!! The waitress said that this is the longest receipt she has ever printed. So, for your viewing pleasure, here is all 18 inches of the receipt!

So, there it is. Grossness at its finest ;-) Did I have a good time? For the most part, yes. I know, I am contradicting myself a bit, but it was spending time with my family that I enjoyed. I look at these crazy pictures and I cannot help but laugh...and almost cry. Corbin and Ryan will move away to college next year and Cody is not far behind. As much as I find it gross, I can only hope that this contests continues for many years to come :-)

Here is to life...live every moment.



Saturday, September 27, 2008

WHAT Did You Do Now??

Do you know how many times I heard that growing up? I would tell you but I’ve lost count :-) It seemed to be a frequent question my parents ENJOYED asking me, ”What did you do now, Laura?” Sometimes they would change it up and say my name first then ask the question. HAH!! I was quite intrigued with life when I was younger…who am I kidding, I still am! And I love living my life by the moment. Oh, I still plan my days but I always leave enough room for mischief ;-)

So what DID I do now? Well, scroll down and take a look (Debi made me do it)



















I changed my hair color back to red! Oh, yah, and Debi really didn’t make me do it ;-) Just figured I could blame her if you didn't like it! AAH HA HA HA HA!! (*running away from Debi REALLY fast *) (pst..watch out for that dishwasher, Debi!!!)

So why did I do it? I was tired of the blond…tired of it drying my hair out no matter how much product I used to keep it moisturized and tired of dealing with the dreaded touch ups! UGH! The red is a little rich in color right now buuuuut it will fade; by next week I will be back to my ‘old’ red. I had a couple of pics to choose from but this one made me laugh so I just HAD to use it.

I had fun changing my hair color to blond but I guess it just wasn’t for me. And I will say that blonds DO NOT have more fun. It’s not the color of our hair, it’s the wonderful personalities and ambitions that allow us to have MORE fun! SO GO HAVE FUN! Do something bold, something new today and enjoy it :-)



PS...the bag over my face opens the opportunity for me to picth using cloth bags instead of paper or plastic. Please recycle! I know, sounds funny coming from a card maker, but rest assure I save and use my scraps and what cannot be used is recycled. We have only one earth, and she has given us a home, so let's take care of her.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Treasured Moments

(I am writing this blog on September 24th to share with you upon my return home today, September 25th. )

Sometimes it is the simple things in life that are most precious; for instance, composing this blog while sitting on the beach nibbling on a granola bar and sipping cool water. Ahh… warm sand between my toes, cool ocean water, the smell of salt water in the air, plenty of birds to talk to, and even an occasional dolphin ( if those darn dolphins would have stayed surfaced a little longer I would have had some great pics to share). There is no stress here, just happy beach goers simply laughing and living.

At this very moment, I am feeling happy, comfortable, peaceful, relaxed, blessed, appreciative, and most of all- thankful. And as I sit here on the beach, I find myself not wanting to leave, just staying in this peaceful environment for eternity. Ahh, but this little piece of sany heaven is meant to be shared. So, with this said, I will share with you what I have experienced today-
Welcome to Torrey Pines beach:

I have NEVER seen a kelp bulb (or Bull Kelp) this large in my entire life!! It is monsterous! Just look at the patch of dried kelp off to the right.

If you go towards the cliff, you will come upon La Jolla. If you go back the other way some distance, you will find yourself at the infamous Blacks Beach (nudist beach). I stayed right in the middle ;-)

I wasn't the only one playing in the water!

So there you have it; a simple day at the beach which I will cherish forever! Though, I will admit that it was difficult to leave ;-)


Tuesday, September 23, 2008

A Day At The Beach

The beach was fabulous, the weather was perfect, and my companions were well behaved! In fact, they were so well behaved that I was able to take their picture together without any fighting!
By now I am sure I have many heads tilted with a facial expression of, "What in God's earth is she talking about...". Well, I'm talking about these two stamps! I am making cards for my sweet friend, Sharon, and told her I was going to work on some of them while at the beach. She was so excited that I was taking them and even reminded me to put sunblock on them. I even brought a bottle of cold water for them so they wouldn't get parched!
There was not a lot of people at the beach today but we did watch a couple of surfers try and catch some waves. We also had a couple of visitors come by and stair aimlessly for no reason (seagulls).
Sharon, the "kids" had a great time and we wish you could have been there :-) Maybe next time (I will bring a bigger bottle of water for you)! LOL!!!

Monday, September 22, 2008

How Do You Spell Relaxation? BEACH!

Hello everyone! Originally you were to have been able to read this if you stopped by my blog earlier today. Unfortunately, someone did not click 'PUBLISH POST' and just logged off!! I cannot believe this person!!! Who does she think she is (um, ME!) So, if you tried to view my newest blog earlier today, I am sorry. I guess I had RELAXATION on my mind!

Which brings me to what I wanted to blog about :-) What better way to relax than sitting on the beach with a cold beverage in hand (Smart Water) soaking up the sun (a sun that won't burn the skin off my body!!)? There IS nothing better, at least for me there isn't. So...I drove to San Diego today with my sunroof open and music pumping. I knew I was close when I could smell the salt water in the air (plus I used to live here so I knew where I was at :-} ).

(please picture a scene of Torrey Pines Beach here...darn connection issue will not allow me to add my picture!)

My plans are simple- spend my early mornings (not a late sleeper) working on a VERY special custom order, my afternoons at the beach, and my evenings with my husband and some of our wonderful friends laughing it up over suhi and sake. The only thing more I could possibly ask for would to have all of you here with us!

Oh, and just because I am away on a short vaca, don't think that I won't be able to chit chat...no way, no how! My laptop will be soaking up the rays along with a couple of stamps (yes, Sharon, I brought the sun screen so the moon does not burn!! HAHA!!!). So don't be shy, I'm still "here" in internet land. Have a wonderful day!

ps- On behalf of my awesome sister Rocki, she apologizes for not being able to blog and email much today for she is experiencing some ugly Internet issues. I, unfortunately, am experiencing webmail issues. So if we are not responding right away, you can thank Cox Communications :-)

Thursday, September 18, 2008


THIS can happen to you if you are not careful!! All I did was ask for a simple, yummy recipe and my FRIEND, who will remain nameless (it was Sharon), gave me a simple, WAAAAY yummy recipe!! We couldn’t stop eating! Even my son, the pickiest eater alive, could not stop eating! Look at me…look at my belly (the water splashed on my belly is supposed to be spilled food…so go with it)!! I look like I have a pillow stuffed in my shirt (at least it’s my favorite throw pillow)!!

I could blog about anything I want but, today, I wanted to send a BIG thank you to the one who shall remain nameless (Sharon) for the awesome recipe. I am not kidding when I say my son Cody literally licked the dish clean!! Debi can vouch for me on how picky he is…so a licked clean dish is a 5 star meal award ;-)

Here is to a fabulous, outstanding meal!! THANK YOU!!!!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008


Ahhh, yes. It is time for me to break away from my stamp studio during the day and become a member of the work force again. BUT this does not mean I am giving up on my Etsy shop! I love making my cards and other goodies and definitely love visiting with all my wonderful friends every day. However, I am feeling a bit cramped and want to slightly strike my husband in the head with a solid object just because I can! HAH! I would never hurt my husband…NEVER (mua ha ha ha). LOL!!! Actually, Paul works out of the house so we share an office….we are together ALL day long…I need a break!! My sister knows me all too well…..I am a work-a-holic.....so being home all day is not condusive to my life style, yet!

So I guess you can say I have a touch of cabin fever…and some extra ‘dough’ wouldn’t hurt ;-) Two months ago, I was working in the corporate world as a manager in new home construction and, because of the lovely market, lay-off’s were ordered. Since January, 2008, the company I worked for ordered 7 lay offs….SEVEN! Sadly, my department was hit every single time and I was the one who had to make the decision on who stayed and who left. But on the seventh lay off it was my turn. Many people were shocked but I wasn’t…it was only a matter of time, and I have told everyone who felt sorry for me that they should be happy for me because I was bouncing off the wall with excitement. I needed to break away from the ugly world of corporate but didn’t know how….so I stayed until they had to pay me to leave- CHA CHING! LOL!!!

With this said, after lightly looking around, I received two job offers this week and have accepted one of them. The hours are perfect and I have weekends off, but the best part of it…I will still have plenty of time for my cards, shop, and most of all my friends and family!
Here's to another journey in my life and I am happy to have all of you here with me.

Monday, September 15, 2008


The Fall & Winter holidays are just around the corner…where did time go? It seems as if we just celebrated New Years 08’. Well, since I can’t fight time, I might as well accept it ;-)

I have been working on some holiday cards and tags and thought I would share them with my friends...some feedback wouldn’t hurt :-) If we were all the same then it would be easy to make what everyone wants, but we’re not. For instance, I like more of the non-traditional Christmas/Holiday cards; the Poinsettia is pretty but it needs a break! Thanksgiving- do you send greeting cards to friends and family? How about holiday dinner/party invites? I would love to hear your thoughts!

As you can see by my collection, I do not offer much in the means of Halloween. Though I enjoy the holiday, not many people hand out greeting cards, but I do make candy bag tags...these were quite popular the past couple of years.

So, don’t be shy! Let me know what you think!

Thursday, September 11, 2008


I will pray for those who have lost their lives September 11th, 2001, and their loved ones who must bare the loss.

I will pray for those who have lost their lives protecting us from harm and those who continue to shield the American people from terror.

I will pray for my friends and family; may your hearts be filled with joy every day.

I will go on with my life; I will make my daily list of things to accomplish and do my very best to complete all of them.

I will be me.

All my love,

Monday, September 8, 2008


Awww yes…here are my diva Rottweiler girls, Gypsy (16 months) and Sierra (4 months shy of her 9th b-day). I am told Gypsy is dressed like a boy; however, that was not my intention. She has quite a bit of energy and I felt that this sweatshirt fits her energetic personality. We adopted Gypsy a few months back from a couple who split up and went their separate ways. The gentleman kept both dogs but, due to long work hours, he was unable to take care of both by himself. Since the other dog was older and required less attention, he decided to find a home for Gypsy. I was honored when he approached me and asked if I would take her- the rest is history! She loves her home here and her new family and especially her new big sister, Sierra!

Sierra is the princess of the house; only pink and purple shall touch her precious fur!! She even sits like a princess!! We bought her from a breeder when she was 6 weeks old. The mother had 10 pups- 9 were full of energy, bouncing around and playing hard with each other. Then there was pup number 10, the runt! She was sitting by herself in a corner in the yard staring at me…she looked so sweet. I clapped my hands and she came running to me and sat on my foot. That was it!! This was my dog!! Her shyness dissipated almost instantly when we brought her home. I knew then she was going to be my princess…and she still sits on my foot :-)

We are currently teaching Gypsy some of Sierra’s special tricks and commands such as: High five (yes, she really knows the difference between “high five” and “give me your paw”), names of the family, “bring it to me” (point at an item and she will bring it to you), and other fun things. She is a fast learner...she picked up on "biscuit" right away! LOL!!

So, these are my diva girls. Both are so very special and so darn loveable but, there is a warning that come along with these beauties…don’t EVER put your face in front of them if you don’t want to be kissed to death by Rotti tongue!!!!!!

Have a wonderful week-

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Don't LEAVE Just Yet!!

I am so excited to be posting my first blog about one of my items listed on Etsy!!! YEAH!

I named this one ‘Autumn Leaves’, it is a Thanksgiving dinner invitation. I had created something similar a few years back for my family and thought this would be a great item to sell on Etsy. The leaves are actually two separate pieces held together with an eyelet; the eyelet allows the leaves to swivel. I first printed the information onto the card stock then stamped the leaves onto the paper with a Versa Mark ink. After I stamped the leaves, I heat dried a clear embossing powder onto them to give a shiny texture. A chestnut and a sheer ribbon finished it off! The most time consuming portion of this was cutting the leaves out by hand…but it is well worth it.

My mind is wondering on winter holiday invitations but I cannot go there just yet. I have holiday greeting card sets I must complete and list first!!

Well, that’s if for now…have a wonderful day!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Fabulous, Darling. Fabulous!

How fabulous is this? It is not often that one makes me speechless yet, for the third time within one month, I have been left speechless! This can only mean one thing....I have some very wonderful friends and family :-)

I woke up this morning telling myself, "Today you will not start off with a huge cup of coffee." Of course, I mumbled some choice thoughts to myself and stomped upstiars (OK, maybe I didn't stomp but it really did set a great scene! However, the mumbling DID occur). Feeling a tid-bit huffy, I signed in to my blog and began to read some comments others had left about my sister, Rocki Balboa (LOL! Couldn't help that one!). I was requested to visit another site and, to my surprise, I had been given this awesome award from The Mum and The Rose! I was speechless. It takes a very special person to recognize someone else...The Mum and The Rose takes the award!!! Thank you so much for the recognition :-)

With this, I have been asked to pass it on. I may not know a ton of people on the blog sites just yet but, for the few I do know, you are absolutely awesome and deserve this award! Here they are, from the bottom of my heart:


These are the rules..
1. The winner can put the logo on his/her blog;
2. Link the person you received your award from;
3. Nominate at least 7 other blogs;
4. Put links of those blogs on yours; and
5. Leave a message on the blogs that you’ve nominate

Thank you, agian, to The Mum and The Rose and to all my friends who love me! I love you back!!

Hugs and kisses,

Monday, September 1, 2008

Don’t Box With My Sister…

She will whoop your BLEEP!! I may have, inadvertently, created a Wii monster :-0 My dear, sweet, darling, won’t hurt a fly sister (Rocki) is training to BE the next RockY with Wii Boxing (kicked her husband’s bleep), Wii Tennis, Wii Bowling (she whooped my toosh), Wii Skiing….I think you get the point. And now SHE’S GETTING A WII!!!!!!!!!!

Rocki and Mark (her fabulous hubby) came over for dinner last night and we spent most of the time playing on our new Wii system. We had such a great time playing the sports games and even exercising on Wii Fit. Watching her turn into a snowball as she biffed on the ski jump was hilarious but her knocking Mark out in boxing was even funnier!! OK, I confess that I MAY have been a snowball once or twice myself but I never beat the crap out of my husband. LOL! I guess I should mention that Debi beat Mark up in the game...he's the bald guy laying on the mat! HAHAH!

Ahh…here’s to great family, great food, and great gaming systems!! HA…who knew I would ever become a gaming junky??
Love to all,