Christmas Traditions Part Deux

A little over a week ago I posted about some Christmas Traditions my husband and I have. Part of that included sharing about our handmade stockings. While the two of us have our names stitched on them, I never put names on the two felt stockings I made for the cats. Never had an idea of how to add them that I thought would look right. Yesterday while doing my morning walk, I saw the perfect idea in the magazine I was reading - mini frames w/ photos attached to a stocking. Loved this idea and thought maybe during the weekend I'd shop for a couple. Fortunately for me, I remembered last night that I actually had some mini frame ornaments by Making Memories. They were in a kit last year sold at Target. I found it on clearance a couple days before Christmas and bought it. Pulled everything out of the large box and stashed the goodies inside a ziploc baggie in my Store In Style drawers. They were perfect! Now each cat has a little framed photo tied w/ a ribbon (from the Target $ spot) on their stocking. Since there were 4 frames in the kit, I also made 2 ornaments for my sister's pets. :) Shh! Don't tell. ;)

Another tradition I wanted to share came in the mail today. When I was younger, my stepfather always purchased advent calendars for my sister, brother & I. Sometimes they told the story of Jesus. Sometimes they were picture stories. And some, like the one I received today have little fictional stories [or at least I think, I haven't started it yet ;) ]. He continued sending me the advent calendars when I left home for college. And, even today, Trent & I receive one in the mail at the end of each November. I confess, it's something I keep an eye out for and still get a bit giddy like a young child with the excitement of this childhood tradition. Thanks, Charles!!


Small Space Organization {Key Rack}

Ever have that "where are my keys??" moment just before you need to leave and you're already running late? Well, years ago I bought a simple wooden mail & key organizer from Target to hang by my front door to prevent moments like those. It served it's purpose well, but a few months ago I was ready for a change. And, as you can see in the photo, we weren't exactly utilizing the mail section (minus the junk in the bottom) and the key hooks were overloaded.

Searching around online, I found a simple key organizer that I absolutely loved at Pottery Barn. Nice clean lines. Lots of hooks. But, I didn't want to pay the asking price. This looked like something I could make myself for less. So instead of point, click, buy ... I drove to Michael's and Lowes Home Improvement for supplies:
  • (1) 9"x12" white frame
  • (1) 12"x12" plywood sheet, 1/4" thick
  • (4) coat hooks
  • (8) screws, washers, and nuts [The screws that came with the hooks had pointed ends which wouldn't work. I bought flat ended screws and finished them off with nuts on the backside.]
  • white primer & white glossy paint in spray cans [from my shed ;) ]
Here's the end result which hangs proudly next to my front door:

Walking & Christmas singing

So proud of myself! I went to bed on time last night (crazy, I know) and then got up 30 minutes early so I could walk on our treadmill - you know, that big machine in the corner collecting dust? ;) Well, it still works. LOL Managed to read the entire Dec issue of Coastal Living. Going to have to find another magazine to read tomorrow which shouldn't be too hard as I have a pile in the living room. This is the first morning in a long time where I haven't been yawning during my commute to work. I am WIDE awake! And have just started on my cup of joe...hope my coworkers are prepared. haha

During my drive in, I was thumbing through radio stations as I normally do (love talk radio during the work day, but prefer music when driving) and ended up listening to some Christmas music. Couldn't have been happier when a caller requested Alvin & The Chipmunks: The Christmas Song. Talk about taking me back in time. I can recall my sister and I putting the record of this song on during Christmases at my grandparents' house. And ok, it might be a bit annoying the 400th time, but gosh it's cute and fun at the moment as I've only heard it twice so far this year. So, yes, I was the one singing and head bopping down the road. :D

Speaking of Christmas music, if you're feeling really festive today and want a chuckle, be sure to check out the YouTube: Kitties Singing Joy-Joy-Joy. I stumbled across it on Facebook yesterday and cracked up. So funny.

Now that I've shared a couple Christmas favorites, what are you favorite holiday songs?


Coupons Galore

No scrapping for me tonight. Trent & I attended our annual HOA meeting and got home around 9pm. Since then I've been sorting through some coupons to work out a possible trade with another user at Hot Coupon World. Great place to learn about deals and make some swaps.

Right now though, my coupons for trading are a wreck. Normally they are stored by category in this blue index card box on my desk which I altered for some "cuteness factor." ;) And a few still are in there. But.... ever since my vacation earlier in the month, the coupons have been clipped, but not organized. And not listed on my Have List at HCW for trading. (That poor list is still showing coupons that expired at the end of October! *gasp*)

Here is a small idea of what the insert coupons from the last 3 Sundays (11/4, 11/11 and 11/18) look like: Yup, a big jumbled mess. I at least tossed them in an empty shoebox sized storage container so they aren't flying all over the desk or turning into toys for the cats. But they are still a mess nonetheless. Hopefully by this weekend they will start to fall into their rightful place in my "Coupons for Trade" box so I can begin to trade more regularly on HCW again. :)

Coupon Box Supplies: hand-me-down box (thanks, Christopher!); Chatterbox patterned paper; Making Memories rub-ons and TinyAlpha stickers; Doodlebug rub-ons.


Tomorrowland Indy Speedway

Fun, quick LO of me outside the Tomorrowland Indy Speedway ride at the Magic Kingdom. I lifted the page design on 11/29 of the Autumn Leaves designing with 2007 calendar.

Supplies: White cardstock; Basic Grey, Chatterbox, EK Success, Karen Foster, and Scenic Route patterned papers; Heidi Swapp photo corners; Disney "Mickey's Used Autos" sticker; 7gypsies tag; Micron pen; stamp ink; staples.

I was somewhat surprised I could focus on scrapbooking at all. Trent baked a loaf of Amish Friendship bread tonight. It smells and tastes delicious. I went downstairs to get the "Trent stamp of approval" on my layout (he sees all my projects before I share) and had a small piece. :)

Happy birthday ...

to my little brother! :)

Supplies: "star bright" patterned paper and staple from the Twinkle Toes kit at Peppermint Creative; Old Type and Dragonfly fonts from Two Peas in a Bucket; Arial font.


Advent Calendar

While blog surfing this morning, I came across a post on of cats and cardstock blog titled "One more reason to go to Starbucks." I was already leaning toward a stop by Starbucks anyhow (a little caffeine comes in handy when chasing - I mean teaching ;) - three to six year olds during Sunday School) and seeing her beautiful altered advent calendar solidified it. Off I went for a cup of iced Mocha (yes, iced - that Sunday School classroom is HOT) and an advent calendar.

After lunch, I pulled out lots of fun scraps & stash to begin altering it. Flipped the XM Radio on our satellite to Holiday Traditions to help get into the Christmas spirit. And a bit later I had my own altered calendar.

Here are photos of the results. It's now proudly sitting on the top of the entertainment center in our living room.

Supplies: Autumn Leaves Foof-a-La, Chatterbox, Cosmo Cricket, Paper Salon, Provo Craft and Scenic Route patterned papers; QuicKutz Moxie, Sunshine and Tangerine fonts; Jolee's Boutique sticker; Making Memories metal charms, brads, eyelets, rub-ons, cardboard stickers, TinyAlpha stickers, wordfetti; Li'l Davis rub-ons; silver stamp ink pad from Target $ spot; Uniball Signo silver pen; Die Cuts with a View adhesive backed cardstock; KI Memories present sticker; rub-ons; snowflake punches.


Changing of Holidays

I had not intended on letting several days go by without blogging. Thursday, of course, was filled with time with family and celebrating. Trent and I started our day at his parents' house for lunch. Later we drove a little further west and visited with my dad's family. Finally returning home after midnight! It was a blessing to see so many of our family members in one day especially those we don't have an opportunity to see quite as often. And we met our new niece for the first time. :)

Yesterday is still a blur due to a migraine so I'm trying to make up for it a bit today. Following the NCSU football game (which I think I'd rather be a blur as well!), we bought our Christmas tree. It's officially standing in its spot in the living room. We'll wait until at least tomorrow before beginning to decorate as the limbs need to drop a bit. But I did switch the wreaths on the front door - placing the fall wreath in storage and hanging the Christmas one. Our home is beginning to look and smell (love that fresh evergreen!) a bit like Christmas.

I couldn't get motivated, however, to do any Christmas scrapbook layouts today. I switched the slide show in the left hand column to feature some Christmas & winter layouts I've done in the past. Maybe they'll inspire me. But I was able to find motivation to complete another Disney layout. Here's my take on the Monsters Inc Laugh Floor:
Supplies: Misc purple cardstock; Uniball signo white pen; Micron black pen; EK Success striped PP and Mike Wazowski sticker; Making Memories brads; stamp ink pad; Times New Roman and Gilligans Island fonts.

2ps Blog Challenge:
What's the latest movie you have seen?

Trent and I watched Transformers last night. He had borrowed the DVD from a co-worker. While I didn't dislike it, in my opinion, it dragged on a bit (seriously could they have spent anymore time having the kid search his room for the glasses???). Parts of it seemed a bit predictable, but the end didn't quite come together as I expected which isn't a bad thing.


Toni's Random Questions

Toni posted a wonderful list of Random Questions on her blog. Here are my responses:
  1. Who am I? Sarah - child of God, wife, daughter, sister, friend, "mom" to the furbabies, aunt, scrapbooker, Sunday school teacher
  2. Who knows me best? my husband, Trent
  3. How old am I? just turned 29
  4. How old do I feel? hmm...depends on the day and my achy knee
  5. The most important thing in my life is... my family and my faith
  6. I always carry... my cellphone, wallet and inhaler
  7. Something I always do is... drink a cup of coffee each morning
  8. I'm at my happiest when... spending time with family or working on my craft projects
  9. On a Monday morning, you'll find me... in the middle of the rat race :P
  10. My favorite mode of transportation is... our new CR-V
  11. My eyes are... brown
  12. My favorite material possession is... my scrapping goodies :)
  13. To relax, I like to... scrapbook, work sudoku puzzles
  14. The town I live in is... growing too fast!
  15. What's my worst habit? My first thought is nail biting, but I've finally bit that habit in the dust [pun intended ;) ].
  16. My guilty pleasure is... dark chocolate peanut M&M's
  17. When I look at someone, the first thing I see is... their expression
  18. I think ....................... is beautiful. I think winter snowfalls are beautiful - and something I rarely see anymore.
  19. One thing that I can live without is... joining a few others in this answer - STRESS!
  20. One thing people don't know about me is... well, if I told you then people would know. ;)
  21. My life is... blessed. It has it's ups and downs, but overall I truly have everything I *need* - loving family, roof over my head, food to eat.

New Look!

Finally made some changes and now have 3 columns for my blog. I had to say goodbye to the "Snapshot" template that I liked and switched to "Minima" instead. But after adjusting column widths, fonts, colors, etc - I think I like the change.

Many thanks to Felicia for alerting me to this possibility in Blogger with her post, How to Get Three Columns, and for sharing with me the Tips for New Bloggers blog. :)


Christmas Traditions

Today's 2ps blog challenge:
With the holidays around the corner. When does your family put up your tree and other decorations? Is there a tradition?

Our first Christmas married and in our new house, we began the tradition of buying our Christmas tree the week after Thanksgiving. We both love the fresh evergreen smell. It helps me to get into the holiday spirit. I confess, the lights are all my responsibility and Trent smartly steers clear. I'm far too obsessed with having them "perfectly" balanced and have been known to restring the tree multiple times!

My favorite part is, of course, hanging the ornaments. Each one has its own story. We have a pewter heart with our names and "Our First Christmas 2003" engraved on it. A small Santa hat with mouse ears from our Disney trip in 2002. An ornament for each of our cats. Marge & Homer under the mistletoe - a gift from me to Trent one year. :) Cross stitched ornaments my mother made when I was a child. And on and on. Lots of happy memories in those ornaments!

Our stockings are hung on the entertainment center as we don't have a hearth! :) All four are handmade. My mother made mine for me as a child. I cross stitched one for Trent and finished it in time for our second Christmas. The "kids" (aka, the cats) each have a felt stocking I made for them.

Finally, our wreath is hung on the front door. I made it using a pre-made green wreath w/ "snow" from Michael's along with burgundy poinsettia flowers and gold ribbon.

Other traditions for the two of us include making homemade and baked gifts for family. This often includes ginger snap cookies and date nut balls. Yum!



Thanks for all the sweet birthday posts! :) I do appreciate them.

Spent a little free time today between church and the NCSU basketball game in my scrap room creating cards. Both were inspired by the Autumn Leaves designing with 2007 calendar.

For my new niece:
Supplies: DCWV card & adhesive backed CS; QK heart; MM metal rimmed tag, metal washer, thread, metal heart, and border rub-on; generic office supply metal rimmed tag; $ tree rub-on hearts; MS heart sticker; blue chalk; and Deja Views Sharon Ann collection PP. / Inspired by Nov 16 of dw2007.

And a birthday card for a friend:
Supplies: DCWV card; Scenic Route PP; ink pad; flower (thanks, Jan!); misc button; MM thread. / Inspired by Nov 8 of dw2007.


Number 29

Today I celebrated 29. It looks weird to type that. I think the next one may look weirder. Hmm. When I was little, I looked forward to this day as the best day of the year. I mean really - cake & presents and all the attention - could it get any better?? ;) Now it feels like they come much too fast! Seems like only yesterday I was celebrating 28.

Started off my day sleeping in until 8:30. Gotta confess, if it wasn't for a hungry husband, I might have stayed there most of the day. I was warm and cozy in that bed. :D We went out to Chik-fil-a for breakfast. Yum! Came home and I played in my scrapbook room for a bit. Managed to complete one card and start a second as I spent most of my time catching up on chatter in the Calendar Girls thread on Two Peas.

Then we headed out for shopping before meeting my dad and his wife for dinner. Our plans got altered here a bit as the 4 of us had planned to meet at The Cheesecake Factory and then Trent & I were going to go to a movie afterward. Well, it turns out tonight was the tree lighting celebration at The Streets at Southpoint and the location for all the hoopla was directly beside the restaurant and theater. Thankfully, Trent & I discovered the crowded mess around 3. I called Dad to change plans. Instead, we had dinner nearby at Johnny Carino's. I had snow crab ravioli - delicious! And we all shared an Apple Skilletini and slice of cheesecake for dessert. All in all, we had a wonderful time.

Here's a photo of the four of us:


From the Scrap Room

I plopped down in front of this machine tonight with the intent to create a digi page. But, when I opened the folder where all my digi kits are stored, I realized that it's time to quit neglecting a little organization. Let's be honest - I have no idea what's in there. Well, I have an idea, but I'm not going to be finding anything quickly! LOL Any scrapbook organization on the computer got overlooked when I was re-organizing all my physical supplies.

So tonight I began to organize those digi kits and here's the result:

I used a free plastic 4x6 album that has been sitting around collecting dust. It's one of those "gifts" received from organizations requesting your donation. I confess, I have a bit of a pack rat in me when it comes to something I *know* I'll eventually find a use for. The original cover was still intact and had a date. 2002. Yup, pack rat. ;) But in my defense - I did find a good use for it (even if 5 years later!).

To the right is a sample of the pages. I created a 4x6 template in Photoshop with the background frame. Then pasted in copies of the digital kit previews and added labels with their titles. Now, when I want to find a kit, I only have to flip through my little booklet.

In other scrappy news, I received my latest order from Two Peas in a Bucket yesterday. Very excited as it included the Autumn Leaves Designing with 2008 calendar. I'm an addict. I discovered the 2006 calendar at a LSS in Sept 2006 for $6. Bought it for fun and fell in love with the inspiration and, of course, the Calendar Girls over at Two Peas! Fun, fabulous group of ladies. I highly recommend getting this calendar and then joining in on the Calendar Girls thread.

Digital Kits booklet cover: Kate Teague Berry Days kit Tan Star Paper; Rhonna Farrer bookplate & i love you kit Flowered Paper; Edwardian Script font


My Thanksgiving Dinner Contribution

Today's 2ps blog challenge:
You have to bring some food to a party. What's it going to be?

The first thing that comes to mind is what I'm taking to Thanksgiving dinner at my Dad's house - green bean casserole. Yum! One of my favorite holiday dishes. :)

Web Game to Help Fight Hunger

Initially, I wasn't certain what I would blog about tonight. I do have a cheat sheet of sorts (a spot where I jot down ideas) and, as those who know me will attest, I can yak away. So, no fear - I can type away too. ;) LOL

But then Trent & I sat down while waiting on dinner to cook and watched the CBS Evening News tonight. Honestly, I don't even recall the last time we sat down to watch the news, but am grateful we caught this program tonight. Katie Couric brought up a new website that is helping to fight hunger across the globe all while the participants simply play a vocabulary game. Sounds odd, I know. But the facts are there.

The website is FreeRice.com. Anyone can visit and try their hand at the game on the site. Every correct answer donates 10 grains of rice to the United Nations World Food Program. The financial backing is provided by sponsorship companies. This simple game is raising awareness about the crisis of hungry people across the world and, since it's start on Oct 7, 2007 through yesterday, has donated 1,897,053,670 grains of rice (FreeRice Totals). Now that is impressive.

If you find a free moment to spare, head over to FreeRice.com and give it a try. You'll definitely help a fellow child of God and you might learn a thing or two at the same time. :)

READ: CBS Evening New Report: Fighting World Hunger with a Mouse Click
WATCH: Website Combats World Hunger


Halloween Decor at the Magic Kingdom

Finally did a traditional scrapbook layout tonight - and 2 pages to boot. ;) You can click on the image below to enlarge it or take a peak at it here. I was inspired by teatimetamera's Disney Challenges at Two Peas. Particularly her latest challenge: Monsters Inc and Halloween Time.

When we arrived in Orlando on November 3rd, we immediately headed to the Magic Kingdom (well, after checking in at our hotel, of course). Halloween decorations greated us from the entrance and continued down Main Street USA. I thankfully stopped for one quick photo of the jack o' lanterns above the street fronts (on 2nd page) before we headed for the rides. By the time we came back down Main Street, it was after dark.

The next morning we arrived at the park shortly after 8 for the Keys to the Kingdom tour. During this time, I noticed that the banners and jack o' lanterns along Main Street had been pulled down. The pumpkin topiaries in front of the Railroad Station and a few window decorations along Main Street were all that remained. In all of the other parks, the Christmas decorations were up!

Supplies: Karen Foster patterned paper; Jolee's pumpkin stickers; K&Co tag; Making Memories tag (I cut into photo corners) and metal "Fall" tag


Birthday Freebies

We all love getting a good deal, right? And what better deal is there than free?? None. :) With my birthday coming up on Saturday (hint: feel free to leave well wishes *wink*), my inbox is filling with goodies and I thought I'd share how to fill yours up with fun offers for your special day.

Another perk of signing up with the restaurants - most email out coupons throughout the year. I added a "Coupons" folder in my Yahoo! Mail to move those deals so I don't loose track of them in my regular email. Then when we are planning to go out to eat, I can easily click & find any printable coupons we might have.

Another Masking Tip

Here's another fun use of the masking technique I explained in yesterday's post (Creating "Photo Letters" in Photoshop) -- use dingbats in place of traditional fonts. Last June I created this card for my mother-in-law to thank her for use of her beach house for a weekend.

I used a photo I took while on the trip and masked it with a dingbat (GE Nautica) found at Dingbat Depot. Then I printed the image on off-white cardstock. The waves I cut freehand from blue cardstock using my x-acto and inked them using a white stamp pad.



Although my traditional scrapbooking supplies have been calling out to me, I just haven't had the mojo to create a scrapbook page since returning from our trip. I look at my fun supplies, thumb through them. Even printed a couple photos, but am at a loss. I have, however, been able to create 2 digital pages using Adobe Photoshop CS. Both I posted in my gallery at Two Peas (and below!) and have had questions about I created certain aspects. In the two posts following this one, are step-by-step instructions for how I went about creating what I call "photo letters" and shaped text. There may be other ways, simpler, faster, whatever. But this is how I did it in my own words. Hope it will help you learn a new trick and inspire you. :)

Today's 2ps blog challenge:
I spend a lot of time online because...

LOL! That's an easy one: blogging, Two Peas message board, email, searching out weekly sales deals, finding and printing online coupons, etc, etc. :)

Creating "Photo Letters" in Photoshop

I created the cover page for our Walt Disney World album in Photoshop CS. The layout idea is scraplifted from a two-page layout by Tricia Kennedy that is published in the Nov/Dec 2007 issue of scrapbooks etc. magazine. I loved the clean, simple design and use of "extra" photos to create part of the title.

Open a new layout. Size as desired. Mine is 8"x8" at 300 pixels.

Type the text you would like to change to photo letters. Adjust the font and size as desired.

Change the opacity of the text layer so that you will be able to "see" your images as you locate them.

Create new layers below the text layer for your images. One image per layer will allow you more flexibility it shifting the images.

Open an image you would like to use. Resize it as needed. Copy/paste into one of your image layers in your layout. Use the Move tool to locate the image where you would like it. For example, I shifted the photo of Mike Wazowski so the pupil of his eye would be visible.

After the images are arranged how you want them, merge the image layers together.

Return the opacity on the text layer to 100%. Then, move the image layer above the text layer.

Select the image layer so that it is highlighted. Now, hold down the CTRL key while pressing the G key. You will notice a little bent arrow next to the layer image in the Layers Manager.

This action creates a clipping mask using your text as the mask. This is the result:

Note: I added a black background to the last image for easier viewing. :)

Shaped Text in Photoshop

Here are step-by-step instructions for how I added journaling to my layout in the shape of Mickey's head.

Open the image you want to use as a template. For me, this was the survey marker photo. I enlarged it so the text shape wouldn't match up exactly with the photo in my layout.

Add a new layer. In the end you will delete the template layer and don't want to lose any of your journaling when doing so. I used this as my "buffer layer" to insure none of my journaling ended up on the template.

Select the pen tool.

Click the Paths button in the toolbar at the top of the screen.

Begin outlining the shape you want to duplicate with your text.

After you have completed your outline, select the Text tool and place the cursor over your pen line where you would like the text to begin. Click to start your text.
Note: The pen line does not need to completely enclose the image you are tracing -- just go as far as you would like to take your text.

Type your journaling. It will follow the path you created with the pen. Add any spaces to help "push" your text where you want it to go. For example, I did this to help center the word "World" at the top of the "head."

Once you have finished typing your journaling, select the template layer and delete it.

Merge the two remaining layers. (Note: I changed the text here to black to make it more readable. I left it white for the project.) Select all, copy and then you can paste it into your layout. Use the Move tool to position it where you want it.


Photo Organization

Digital Photo & Print Organization
Since purchasing my first digital camera in early 2002, organizing photos has become a bigger challenge. With 35mm film, I felt as though I was limited by the number of exposures on the roll and would take a photo cautiously - not wanting to run out of film and miss something. These days, I have the opposite problem - too many photos! I keep a 1GB card in my digital camera and snap away. On the trip to Disney, between my camera and the photo CD we purchased from Disney, I have 365 photos!! Enough to make anyone's head spin.

On my computer, I simply store all my photos in the My Pictures folder. Inside are folders for each year. Then I have folders for each event within the annual folders labeled by date and event. For example, my Disney photos are in a folder with the title "Nov - Disney Trip."

Having over 300 photos for one event can be a little much. For starters, it eats up more of the hard drive space, but also can make it difficult to find a specific photo I'm looking for. After transferring all photos from the camera card to the hard drive, I start flipping through them using the Windows Picture Viewer. As I find a photo that is "not good" [for me, this ranges from blurry to "why did I even take that?" ;) LOL ], I delete it. If I hesitate, I'll keep it for the time being.

Recently I added a folder to my 2007 Pictures titled "-to be ordered-" where I can drop copies of images I want to get printed so when I'm ready for prints, I don't have to search multiple folders and I don't need to worry about accidentally reordering a photo I've already had printed. (I jump between developing companies depending on which has the best prices at the time which can make a double order easy to do if I'm not paying attention.) After I've uploaded the images to a photo developing website, I delete those images from the "-to be ordered-" folder.

Finally, I back-up all of my digital images in two places - my Maxtor external hard drive and on annual CDs. Although I think I might start using DVDs as they have a greater capacity. All of my prints, are stored in Pioneer Space Saver Photo Albums. I love the slim design of these albums and as they are more for my reference and archiving than for show - it's not important to me to have "pretty" photo albums. I purchase the 144 pocket option online from Archival USA and add date labels on the spine using my label maker.

Older Photo Organization
I have lots of prints from both the "old" film days and those that were given to me by whomever took the photos. I store these separate from the digital print albums. Why? Well, I use the Pioneer albums as an index of my digital photos. A hard copy way to thumb through and see what I might like to work with when scrapbooking or just looking for a photo to share. I don't want to mix these with my film prints. I store my film prints in Rubbermaid Photo & Media Storage Boxes. Any groupings of a particular event, are sorted into photo envelopes from Archiver's. I like using these envelopes because of their archival quality and lined outside with room to list the contents. They keep the boxes orderly and help me locate an event quickly.


If I had one million dollars to donate

Today's 2ps blog challenge:
If you had to donate one million dollars to any charity, which one would it be and why?

I'd donate the money to the National Parkinson Foundation. My maternal grandmother suffered from Parkinson's most of her life. I saw first hand how devastating it can be not only to the afflicted but to their family and loved ones. My grandmother asked that her brain be donated following her death in the possibility that it may help researchers learn more about the disease that took over her life. If I had one million dollars, I would give it to the NPF in hopes it would help further their research for a cure.

Wolfpack Victory!

Part of our reason for returning from Orlando yesterday was to attend today's football game between NCSU and UNC. We shivered through the entire nailbiter of a game. It literally came down to the last few minutes and, thankfully, a 31-27 Wolfpack victory!


Magical Week

Home again. :) My husband and I celebrated our 4th wedding anniversary yesterday. But, rather than just enjoy a day - we flew to Orlando last Saturday and spent the week at Walt Disney World. We visited all four theme parks, Downtown Disney and the waterpark, Blizzard Beach. It turned out to be a wonderful time to visit - not crowded at all and comfortable weather (almost chilly at times!). Definitely a fun way to celebrate.

The photo at the left was taken on Sunday during a break in a tour we went on - Keys to the Kingdom. This 5 hour tour literally took us backstage at the Magic Kingdom from behind Main Street USA to underground in the "utilidor" tunnels that run b
elow the park. Our tour guide was full of interesting tidbits about the park that we might have otherwise missed including where to spot a couple hidden Mickeys.

Speaking of which, we spotted Mickey's likeness high and low throughout the parks and resorts.

And, of course, we saw a lot of characters (pun intended :D ). But probably most surprising was a visit by Tinker Bell.

I could probably write on and on - it was a week's worth of fun - but I still have over 300 photos to sort through and at least 2 more bags to unpack....