Sunday, December 20, 2009

Some Christmas Inspiration

If you're anything like me, then you are probably still trying to finish up some last minute crafting and/or shopping. I wanted to take a minute to share some pictures of Christmas projects that have inspired me. They are definitely on my "To Do" list for next year.

This project can be found here at

I absolutely *adore* this vintage ornament wreath created by Whitney Smith. Isn't it lovely?

I think that I will make some table decorations similar to these for my shop next year. You can find these at Felt-o-rama.

I might even try these yummy little gingerbread houses by Not Martha. Maybe. ;)

May your dreams be filled with sugar plums and your home be filled with joy.

*holiday hugs*

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Look at that face...

...And, yes, he is mischievous. These are some pics that we took in mid-November. Gotta love the blue raspberry ring pop! Whatever works, right? ;)


Saturday, December 5, 2009

Somebody pinch me!

I must be dreaming. But, if I am, please don't wake me up!

It has been an absolutely incredible few days! First, I received an e-mail regarding a few of my layouts that I have in my Flickr account. (I'll post more about that a little later. It's so exciting!) Then, I had a wonderful time at my knitting class with Rhonda at Ewe-Nique Knit. She was so patient, walking me through each stitch step-by-step. The class was supposed to be from 5:30-6:30. We were chatting away and completely lost track of time. It wasn't until Tobi called the store looking for me that we realized it was 7:30! Thanks again, Rhonda, for patiently sharing your knowledge with me! =) After class, I met Tob & Jer at Chili's for dinner. (We missed you, Keish!) Our original plan was to go out to dinner and then go to see New Moon again. Linway's shows were at 6 & 7:30. Definitely missed those. Elkhart had a show at 9:30, so we decided to catch that one. We ate our dinner and chatted for a while. We checked the time as we were getting ready to leave, and it was already 9:45! (Are you starting to see a theme?) Needless to say, we missed that show, too. The best laid plans, right? So, we got some coffee and went back to Tob's. She recently bought a tool that you can use to make custom brads/buttons. We played with that for a while. Jer decided to call it a night and headed home. Tob and I checked out some really cool imported Japanese fabric on Etsy for a while. Again, then next thing we knew, it was 2:00! Holy crow!! Today, I got some more news regarding my Flickr layouts. I am just bursting at the seams with excitement and can't wait to share it with you! (Once I get the okay, I'll make another post about that. I promise.) As if all of that wasn't enough, I had 2 more Etsy sales tonight!

I can't wait to see what else the weekend has in store! =)


Tuesday, November 24, 2009

It was a lovely, busy weekend!

My weekend started a little early with the 12:02AM showing of New Moon with 10 of my friends. (I'll post more about that later.) I spent most of Friday recouperating from the 40+ sleepless hours prior to that. Heather, Ian, and I went to Shipshewana on Saturday. It was overcast in the morning, but it turned out to be a beautiful fall day! Sunday I got to spend time with my friend Cris, little "E," Cris's mom, and Cris's nephew - always a fun time! While I was there, I had the chance to take some more 8-month pics of "E." She wasn't feeling well (cutting 2 teeth and running a temp), but she was a real trooper! Here are some sneaks, Cris. I hope you like them.


Friday, November 13, 2009

crafting and snapping and blogging away...

I have been busy crafting for the last couple of days, making new items for my shop. I've listed some of my new coffee cozies but here are a couple that I haven't had a chance to post, yet.

I can 't believe that little miss "E" is almost 8 months old. Where on earth have the last several months gone? We were able to get a few outdoor pictures last Saturday and will be taking some indoor photos this Sunday. (Maybe for Christmas cards? wink, wink ;) She was such a good girl and so much fun! Here are a couple of Miss "E's" pics.

I also get to take my godson's 4-year pictures on Saturday. I am really looking forward to this weekend! I'm going to be super busy, but I'll be doing things that I really enjoy and spending time with people that I love. What can be better than that? I have a pretty full schedule next week (lots of coffee cozy orders to fill! :), but I'll try to get some of this weekend's pictures edited before Thanksgiving. So, stay tuned for more updates! =)
Have a great weekend!
Michelle =)

Thursday, October 29, 2009

As promised...

A few weeks ago, I got to spend some time with Vicki, Josh, and their energetic Doberman, Rockne Lou. (Yeah, they're huge Irish fans.) I had so much fun! When I was little, my aunt had two Dobermans. I had forgotten how playful that breed is. Rockne was a riot! As promised, Vicki, here are some of the edited pictures. I hope you like them! ;)


Friday, October 16, 2009

Here comes the weekend, and I'm SO excited!

I feel like I've been walking around in a cloudy haze for the last 2 weeks. Today, I decided to look for my little cloud's silver lining.

Here are 3 things that made me happy today:
1.) yummy pumpkin dip that I made to take to work tomorrow
2.) the adorable 2010 calendar that I bought at
3.) my new Scentsy warmer (with Coconut Macaroon wax)
I'm also looking forward to my friends' Halloween party on Saturday. I don't think that I've been to a costume party since I was in junior high school! I just hope that my costume isn't too dorky! ;)
Have a great weekend!
Michelle =)

Monday, October 5, 2009

I don't know what to say...

(I started this post on 10/5/09. It took some time to finish...)

"It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us..." - A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens

As I'm sure you all know, I am an avid scrapbooker and crafter. Scrapbooking - and all things related to it (photography, card making, etc.) - is my passion. I love absolutely everything about the process. And, it is through this "hobby" that I became involved (as an employee, instructor, and designer) with our local scrapbook store, Pages In Time.

It was recently announced that, after 7 wonderful years, the owners have decided to close the store. Pages is the place that I met most of my best friends. Friends that I now consider sisters. I truly thank God every day that they are a part of my life. To me, Pages isn't just a store. It is an integral part of my life. It has been my home away from home, my refuge. A place where I could always go and find people who cared about me, supported me, and accepted me for who I am, foibles and all. People who were always willing to lend a sympathetic ear when I'd had a bad day or give me a kick in the butt when that's what I needed. I can't fully express how this is going to impact our lives. Not only are we losing our "home," but my sisters are also losing their jobs. Jobs that help to pay the bills. It is a difficult time for all of us, but especially for them. I know that your thoughts and prayers are appreciated and cherished.

It has also been difficult for our customers. Several of us have gotten tearful phone calls from our customer-friends who are just devastated by the news. To most of them, PIT isn't just a store, either. It has been a place to relax with their friends. To make and preserve memories.

The liquidation sale started yesterday. I went in last night after work. To say that it was difficult would be an understatement. I turned the corner into the complex and was greeted by a sea of cars. All I could think was "Please God, let there be a party at Uptown Kitchen." There wasn't. All of those vehicles belonged to shoppers clamoring for the deals at PIT. When I walked into the store, my stomach dropped. I didn't even recognize it with all of the neon "Sale!" signs posted throughout the store and all of the flourescent pink price tags on the products. The crop area had been all but dismantled and all of our decorations were sitting on the tables, waiting for someone to give them a new home. I thought "Where is my stocking? I'd kind of like to have it as a keepsake." but I didn't have the heart to dig through the boxes. Then one of our regular croppers asked me how I was doing. The floodgates openned out of nowhere. I was so embarrassed, but she was very understanding. It had finally hit me. I have been so blessed to be able to be a small part of so many people's lives - and to have had them be a part of mine. You just can't get that at a chain store.

PIT is closing. That's the reality, and there is nothing that we can do to change it. But, I will continue to hope and pray that someone will see the void that this is leaving in our community and try to fill it. And, if I possible, I would love to be a part of that.


Monday, September 21, 2009

Kenny did it again!

(I started this post on 9/21/09 and evidentally didn't post it - so, here you go! ;)

Saturday night, thanks to my wonderful sister-in-law, my friend Tobi and I were able to attend the Kenny Chesney concert at Lucas Oil Stadium. (Go Colts!) This was my 5th Kenny Chesney concert, and it was incredible! The Zac Brown Band started off the show at 4PM and was followed by Miranda Lambert, Montgomery Gentry, and Sugarland. Kenny took the stage around 9:30PM and had his first encore around 10:45PM. At first, I was a little disappointed that he hadn't performed longer. (Last year, he didn't do any encores, so I thought that the concert was done.) Then, he continued for 2 long encores, bringing out all the day's performers and jamming to some classic rock/oldies songs. The concert ended a little before 11:30PM, with Kenny's tearful performance of Better As A Memory, which he co-wrote with Holly Gleason. If the song is at all biographical (which most of his songs are), it is a pretty sad song. (You can read the lyrics here.) That was one reason. The other, in case you haven't heard, is that he is not touring next summer. He is taking a break to write - and, I assume, record. Kenny is a self-proclaimed workaholic and loves touring and meeting his fans. I believe that I can probably speak for all of his fans when I say "Kenny, enjoy your break and write your heart out. We can't wait for your next album. See you in 2011!" =)

Thursday, September 10, 2009

July DT Assignment

Our website was having some gliches, so we weren't able to post our July assignments until this week. I know it's a little late, but here it is. I had the August Techniqe of the Month display and chose "The Art of Scraplifting" using layouts and cards from the May issue of Scrapbook Trends. In the examples below, you will see that scraplifting can range from borrowing the complete concept/design of a layout to using the same basic sketch of a project to using a similar idea/element. TFL! =)

Scrapbook Trends layout:

My layout:

Scrapbook Trends layout:

My layout:

Scrapbook Trends cards:

My cards:

Monday, August 24, 2009

It was a crazy busy weekend...

Friday night, I worked on Thank You cards that I desperately need to send out ASAP. I'm trying to finish those up today.

Saturday was our office picnic - indoors. All week the forecast had been calling for beautiful weather for both Saturday and Sunday. So, of course, it rained all day Saturday. Luckily, we all fit cozily in the house. Thanks, Mike & Kathy! I had a great time! =)

Sunday was Casi's surprise birthday party. I cannot believe that my "little pickle" is 10 years old! Honestly, where has the time gone? I remember the day she was born like it was yesterday. I feel so blessed to have been a part of bringing her into the world. I was thinking about that yesterday, and I'll admit that I got a little choked up. I'm so proud of her and the young lady that she is becoming.

Last night was TV night. If you know me well, you know that I was glued to my beautiful TV from 9 - 9:45. (Why was last night's episode nearly 10 minutes shorter than normal?!) I also watch Lifetime's lineup. I love Drop Dead Diva and Army Wives!

This morning, I had another appointment with Dr. Bond. When I was 8, I had a bicycle accident and chipped 2 of my front teeth. They have been bonded ever since. Well, at last Thursday's check-up, he discovered that the bonding on the back of my front tooth had separated and the tooth was starting to show signs of decay. (blech!) SO...I have to either have it capped/crowned or have a porcelain veneer put on it. I'm thinking that the veneer sounds cheaper and less invasive. That's my vote. They did some of the prep work today and did an x-ray - mandated by my insurance company. (Like I would voluntarily have this done!) So, I get to go back on Wednesday to have the rest of the prep work done and find out which route we're going to take. A great start for the week. :P

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

totally random

For all of my wonderful Twilight friends, here is a link to the newest New Moon trailer. Enjoy! ;)

I've been busy planning, designing, prepping, and teaching classes at PIT and working on layouts for the store, as well as getting things around for last weekend's scrapbook-themed garage sale.

This summer has been crazy - driving to Berne nearly every other weekend since mid-May for our high school choir reunion and concert. Still have to send out "Thank Yous," but then I'm finally finished with that project.

Took a knitting class - then took a Xanax. That's all I'll say about that. Probably going to stick with the Knifty Knitter for a little while more.

Two of my friends from work are leaving. KMM's last day is this friday, and CXW's last day is next friday. I'm very happy for both of them, but sad for me. :(

Labor Day weekend is going to be "Etsy project time." Planning lots of crafty projects to load on the site as well as the rest of my hats. I've also decided that I'm going to start making an extra kit from each of my classes and add that to my sight, too. Stay tuned for more info...

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

new pics of little "e"

I took E's 4 month pictures last week. She was having a cranky day, but she was a real trooper. Cris & Bryce, here are a few peeks. I hope you like them. =)
I played with my photo editing software on this one. The original was really over-exposed. I kinda like the funky look I ended up with.
The tutu is kind of taking over in this one...
Still so serious...and cutting teeth?
Boy, that tutu must be yummy!
Finally, a smile! Thanks Bryce - you're hired! ;)

Friday, July 10, 2009


I don't know why, but I just couldn't find my groove the first part of the week. Finally started to find my mojo on Wednesday. So, of course, I got sick and had to leave work yesterday. Murphy's Law and all that. Today, I am feeling much better and am in "the zone" - finally! I have to do all my prep tonight for tomorrow morning's class, but I hope to still make it a relatively early night. We'll see. ;)

Thursday, July 2, 2009

just some randomness...

I thought that I would post some random thoughts & ideas and facts about myself. (Yeah, it's a slow news day! ;)

Random Thoughts:

* Common courtesy and common sense don't seem to be all that common anymore.

* It is cheaper to buy "junk" or unhealthy food than it is to buy fresh produce. And we wonder why, as a society, we are so incredibly unhealthy. (Myself included.)

* We should always live in the "now" and plan for tomorrow. We can't change yesterday.

* It takes fewer muscles to smile than it does to frown. =)

* Friends are the family you choose for yourself.

Random facts about Me:

* I tend to scowl when I'm concentrating and/or deep in thought -- something that I'm constantly working on.

* I have had 14 different addresses in the last 18 years. No joke. Just ask my parents.

* I have always wanted to be a professional photographer but thought that I would be able to make a better living as a social worker. (Insert hysterical laugh here.)

* I have performed at Carnegie Hall twice.

* I love to travel. Okay, most of you probably already knew that. My dream job would be to travel the world taking pictures and experiencing each country's unique culture. I would love to be Samantha Brown.

Last, but certainly not least,

* I can tie a knot in a cherry stem with my tongue. ;)

Thursday, June 25, 2009

It's gonna get real crazy, real fast...

(written 6/25/09) Right now, I'm trying to enjoy the "normalcy" of my relatively simple life, because I'm afraid that it's not going to stay that way for long. Next month, a mere 4 weeks away, is the South Adams High School A Cappella Alumni Choir Reunion and Concert. Aaron Kaehr and Rochelle (Sprunger) Criss, and I are the planning committee for this event. They are a real joy to work with. It's hitting crunch time, and, to be honest, we're starting to get a little concerned. As of yesterday, we've only had 6 registration forms returned, and that included Aaron's. I'm trying really hard to not completely freak out. So, if you are a member of our Facebook page, don't be surprised if you start to receive reminder e-mails. In order to save my sanity (and Aaron and Rochelle's), I implimented a deadline of Friday, July 10th for all registrations. I might allow myself a minute to freak out after the 10th. Maybe. We also have someone who has graciously volunteered to seek out some corporate sponsorship to help cover the expenses of the event. Thanks, "M!" So, I'm keeping my fingers crossed and praying that I have a mailbox full of registration forms when I get home tonight. Wouldn't that be nice? =)

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

my first food review...Asian potstickers

As most of you know, I don't cook. Well, at least not very often. Now, that's not to say that I can't cook. I can. I just choose not to. There's just something about eating the same meal twice a day for a week... One of the pitfalls of being single and living alone: What do you do with all the extra food? So, I live on frozen dinners, canned soup, and take-out. It's just easier. Okay, so there's a little background. (Just in case you didn't already know. ;)

As someone whose diet consists primarily of frozen dinners, I discovered last week that both Healthy Choice and Lean Cuisine have Asian-style potstickers. So, I decided to conduct my own little taste test and food review. And, here you go:

Overall, the Lean Cuisine meal has fewer calories, carbs, and Weight Watchers points. However, it also recommends that you cook it at 50% power for 8.5-9 minutes, which is quite a while when you are in a crunch for time. (BTW, you can cook it at full for 4 minutes, and it turns out just fine.) The Healthy Choice meal needs about 4 minutes on high. The Healthy Choice meal has twice the dietary fiber - and a lot more flavor. And, it only takes 4 minutes in the microwave at full-power. The Lean Cuisine meal, though good, was rather bland compared to the wonderful, ginger zing of the Healthy Choice meal. I would give the Lean Cuisine meal 3.5 out of 5 stars and the Healthy Choice meal 4.5 out of 5 stars.

Friday, May 22, 2009

More pics of Baby "E"

Baby "E" and I got to spend some more time together tonight. She is so sweet and so, so funny! She would "talk" to me, smile, you name it - until I put the camera up to my face! ;) We were able to get some good shots, though. We took pictures of her wearing some of my newer hats, too. And, of course, she didn't hesitate to let me know when she was done modeling. ;) She was such a trooper! I just love spending time with her and Mommy! Thanks again, Cris! =) As promised, here are some more peeks.

This is where "E" decided that she was done with the hats. Guess we'll have to try again later! ;)

May you all have a safe and wonderful holiday weekend!

Monday, May 18, 2009

It was a busy day...

Today was definitely a busy day. I finished reading a book; knit a hat; took Baby "E's" 2-month pictures; finished loading my first batch of hats onto my Etsy shop, BurrygirlDesigns; and edited some of "E's" photos. As promised, Cris & Bryce, here's a peek at some of today's pics...

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Baby "E"

Here are the other 2 layouts that I've recently designed using some of Baby "E's" 2-week photos. Okay, she was actually 2 weeks & 2 days, but who's counting. ;)

I am taking some more pictures of Baby "E" Sunday afternoon. I can't believe that she's already 2 months old! Where has the time gone? I can't wait to spend time with her, Mommy, and Daddy. She is such a sweet little babydoll, and they are such a wonderful family! I'll be sure to post some sneeks for you, Cris & Bryce! Baby "E" is also my official hat model, so you will get a sneak peek of some of my newest hats, too!

Tomorrow's agenda: knit, take lots of pictures, edit some photos, blog, open BurrygirlDesigns. =)

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Etsy shop to open soon!

Okay. I know that I'm more than a little behind schedule, but I am still busily making products for my Etsy shop, BurrygirlDesigns. For now, here is a sneak peek at some of the hats that I've knit for my shop. I'm trying to come up with names for each of the designs and am open to suggestions. More to come soon, I promise! =)

Oh, and these pictures were taken in the garden at the Olde Buffalo Inn in Nappanee, IN.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

beautiful little baby "e"

I bought my Canon DSLR a year ago. I'm more than a little embarrassed to admit that I am still trying to figure out how to use it. Let me clarify. I know how to use all of the auto settings. (I'm not that blonde!) But, I'm still trying to figure out the gagillion manual settings. To be honest, it's been a little overwhelming. My friend, Jeri, has given me some pointers, and that has helped. So has my sweet friend, Cris. She was kind enough to allow me to take her belly pics when she was expecting with little "E." Great practice with difficult lighting and hues. And, of course, when little "E" was born, I jumped at the chance to take her newborn photos! So, Cris & Bryce, here is a "peek" at a few of the pictures from last Thursday. Thank you for letting me spend time with you and your amazing little "E!" I hope you both like the pictures. Your cd is coming soon, I promise! ;) I can't wait to scrapbook her! =)