Category Archives: personal

Just Checking In…

Just thought I’d check in. It has been a busy few days. My mom’s funeral yesterday was lovely. Just as she would have wished it to be. The words at the service captured her perfectly. It all still seems a little unreal. Very real, but at the same time, not. I know that I will miss my mom for the rest of my life. I was going to say more, but right now, I just don’t feel I can. I just wanted you to know, I’m doing OK.

 I received the most beautiful vase of white lilies on Sunday from my dear friends Lindsey, Michele and Trudee. Thanks so much, my friends! I was so touched by your thoughtfulness and care. Sometimes it is hard to believe I’ve never even met the three of you!


Thanks so much to all of you who have supported my family and I and taken the time to post your condolences. I’ve gotten a lot of comfort from your words. So many of you have gone through similar circumstances and I apprecitate you sharing them with me.

Today I’ve spent my day being with my two little boys. The older three are back to school. Exam time here at the high school and my daughter’s elementary school graduation next week. I’m holding my little ones close and enjoying spending time with them again. The past few weeks and especially the past few days, I’ve hardly been here and they are feeling a little unsettled. I’ve promised them I won’t leave the house again for a few days.

As for designing, I haven’t had the time until today and I’ve been busy trying to get the house back in order. I’m hoping some inspiration will strike soon. I have projects and deadlines to complete in the upcoming weeks and I think, once I get started again, it will be a good outlet for me. I’m just taking it one day at a time, taking the time to enjoy my family and my memories of my mother and best friend.

At Peace…

(image downloaded from internet)

Yesterday , my mom passed away peacefully at 2:10 in the afternoon. I was able to be there, holding her hand. My mom had been diagnosed back in May 2005 with melanoma and fought a valiant battle. I’m so glad that her suffering is now over and she is at home with the Lord.

 My mom was also my best friend and I just can’t find the words to express how much she will be missed. Mom was so many things…generous, kind, loving, courageous, smart, witty… the central part in our family, a wonderful mother and grandmother. Mom was always there. I was thinking the other day of the Proverbs 31 woman and how much my mom exemplified that.

Thank so much for all your thoughts and prayers. Some of you have known of my mom’s illness for almost two years and have sent cards to her as well. She found a lot of joy & strength receiving them. We have been so blessed with so many people praying for her and our family.

I will sing of Your mercy
that leads me through valleys of sorrow
to rivers of joy

when death, like a gypsy
comes to steal what I love
I will still look to the heavens
I will still seek your face

(Jars of Clay)


Tagged again….this time by Sherrie! It’s taken me a few days to get around to it but here it is. For this tag,  I had to copy the list and provide my own ONE WORD answers! Ever tried to answer in one word…a little more difficult that you would think. LOL Maybe I’ve just gotten a little too “wordy” lately! My entries just seem to keep getting longer. Maybe this is a sign to type less! LOL

Yourself: Blessed
Your Partner: Wonderful
Your Hair: Brown
Your Mother: Treasured
Your Father: Loved
Your Favorite Item: ?
Your Dream Last Night: bizarre
Your Favorite Drink: French Vanilla
Your Dream Car: SUV
Dream Home: Large
The Room You Are In: Office
Your Fear: Claustiphobia
Where You Want to be in Ten Years: here
Who You Hung Out With Last Night: family
You’re Not: organized
One of Your Wish List Items: Storage
The Last Thing You Did: Hugged child
You Are Wearing: skirt
Your Favorite Weather: sunny
Your Favorite Book: Bible
Last Thing You Ate: sandwich
Your Life: busy
Your Mood: content
Your Best Friend: Husband
What Are You Thinking About Right Now: deadlines
Your Car: Astrovan
What Are You Doing At The Moment: write-ups
Relationship Status: Married
What Is On Your TV: Veggietales
What Is The Weather Like: Overcast
When Is The Last Time You Laughed: Today

Now usually after being tagged, you need to tag 5 more people. I hope you’ll forgive me…I know that a lot of bloggers have already been tagged and I just haven’t had the time this past week to go looking. If you haven’t been tagged yet…this one is for you! I’ve tagged you! 🙂 If you take me up on it, make sure you post a comment here that you did and I’ll come take a peek! 🙂 Have a great week!

Edited to Add… Sharlene took me up on the tag. Check out her blog here! 🙂

Birthday Pics, Kids’ Crafts & Lots of Links…

School is almost out…I know for some of you in the US,  it already is! Busy, busy days! Wonderful ones too! Make sure you take lots of time to enjoy them! I have a few links to help you out if you are interested! Although these are not all craft related, I hope you enjoy them….they are all links I’ve used many times in the past and found helpful. A lot of them are great for anyone…not just for people with kids! I always love a good tip or link too. Feel free to share any you might have in my comments section on this entry. I’d love to hear from you!

  • Engraving Art: For older kids Engraving Art is a great craft product and will help smooth out long trips or rainy days at the cottage. I’ve written a Craft Critique article on them that is published today. You can check it out at Engraving Art Article …
  • Kids Carnival Links: Craft Critique also has a great Kids Carnival with lots of links of fun things to do with your kids… Craft Critique Kids Carnival
  • Kraft Foods: Kids love food and cooking. I know my children always love…(well, most of the time) to try out new things in the kitchen. I love this site for great ideas for family cooking. They always turn out great and are very family friendly! Kraft Foods US site or the one I use, Kraft Canada. I think the sites are pretty much the same except the promotions are different. They also have a free magazine that you can sign up for there. I love getting mine in the mail. I believe they come about 6 times a year.
  • Family Fun: Need lots of fun kids ideas? I love Family Fun for that. They have a great magazine but their free on-line site is fabulous. It is packed full of great ideas for crafts, recipes, parties, printables…take a peek for yourself!
  • Family Time: Family Time is another site you may want to check out. Recipe ideas, kids crafts ideas, home and garden. This site is not just for families with small children, anyone can enjoy this site!
  • Parenting: Parenting tips, baby names, questions etc. can all be found at I used this site a lot during my last two pregnancies. It is a great resource of information. I especially liked the e-mail pregnancy updates. You can sign up each week to get an e-mail update on the size of your baby and how it is developing as you go along.
  • Movies: Kids always love movies…who doesn’t?! I’m rather picky on what my kids watch though! I love Kids In Mind for movie reviews. They rate the movie on profanity, violence and sex/nudity. They even break it down into exactly what you will be seeing and hearing. It always pays to make a well-informed decision on what you let your kids watch. Another fabulous site is Plugged In Online! It is by Focus on the Family and also reviews music and tv as well as movies. Plugged In is a resource I really trust.

The Birthday Pics…

Joshua had a pretty nice 2nd birthday yesterday. It wasn’t that exciting a day as two of  his siblings were home sick, but he enjoyed himself! We had lots of fun playing toys and watching a new Jay Jay movie. We were a little disappointed that we couldn’t have cake with my parents and aunt as we had planned but Mom was not well-enough and there was no way we could bring sick kids near her. 🙁

It was so hard to know what to buy Joshua! As a fifth child and the fourth boy…we have a good supply of toys. Well, that is quite the understatement! LOL Because of everyone being sick and my mom in the hospital last weekend, I haven’t gotten out yet to get him his large present. I think we’ve finally settled on a slide and little ride-on car…the toddler kind. He is such a sweetie and so easy to please! I had managed to buy him some more soothers and a couple new bibs at the drug store when I picked up still more antibiotics. I was so glad that I had also ordered a few things from ! Love that site! Great quality products and they ship so easily to my door…always in a week. I’m sure it would be even quicker if you live in the USA. Joshua got the most darling Larry Boy (from Veggietales) dress up toy….just like Mr. Potato Head only Larry Boy. He adores it! I also ordered the Jay Jay movies and the cutest Playdough Veggie Tales Haircut set. Benjamin and Joshua have been having a great time with that. Another really cute toy for the toddler that has everything…Little Tikes has a new Bubble Animal machine. You squeeze the handle, the mouth opens and the bubbles blow out. No mess! I love it as much as he does, LOL. 🙂 I also bought one of those for his cousin Jack. Jack’s birthday is tomorrow…they were born only 40 hours apart! Happy, happy birthday, Jack!

Joshua with Diego Cake, Joshua & Benjamin


Time for Presents


Make sure you take the time to check back in tomorrow. 🙂 I just may have a little goodie here for you!

Almost Two! & a Little Monkey Business…


I just can’t believe how fast the past two years have flown by. Joshua will be TWO on Thursday the 31st. He is such a little darling, but such a little rascal too! His dad gave him a haircut last week and he looks so much older…sniff, sniff. Super cute but I know my baby is growing up.

 This is a card I made for his birthday. He and Benjamin love reading Curious George together, climbing and getting into mischief too! When I saw this darling monkey paper and sticker line…I just had to make a card for him with it. I know he’ll love it. He loves cards for some reason. I have to be quite careful not to leave any design work where  he can get his hands on it as he likes to inspect my work! 🙂

Celebrate Little Monkey

Inside: Happy Birthday to my Little [Wild One]


For this card, I was focusing on the patterned paper….lots of inking and I sanded the stickers, but very little stamping. I found the darling little sentiment from Love Ya Bunches and thought it would work perfectly with this card. I added it to the inside sentiment which I printed off on my computer.

Quick Tip: Sand or ink stickers to add interest and texture to them. I am not a huge sticker fan but they can be fun and easy, and with a little altering, work really well.

There were so many circular and rounded shapes on the patterned paper that I played off that feature for my layout. For some fun texture, I layered the elements over some frayed twill and attached it with eyelets set with my Crop-a-dile.

Supply List:

Cardstock: Chocolate Chip, Very Vanilla, Bashful Blue – Stampin Up

Patterned Paper: Monkey Business line – Reminisce

Stamps: Love Ya Bunches – Stampin Up

Ink: Chocolate Chip – Stampin Up

Other: Monkey Business stickers – Reminesce, eyelets – Making Memories, circle punches – EK Success, twill tape – Stampin Up, Crop-a-dile – We R Memory Keepers

Updates & Links…

First of all an update on my mom and mother-in-law for those of you who are interested. My mother-in-law came came through her lumpectomy well. They removed a couple of lymph nodes as well but did not have to remove them all so we were quite grateful. The surgeon feels that it was very successful and after some radiation treatments, she will be healthy again.

My mom has been having a rough time. On Saturday she was hospitalized again due to complications of the Melanoma. Please continue to pray for her as she truly needs your prayers right now.

Our “little” family….Benjamin is feeling much better and over his Strep Throat. James is currently on antibiotics for Strep and Bronchitis and now Heather seems to be coming down with something as well. Yikes! If I take a while to get back to you, please bear with me…we have a lot going on right now!

Things to Check Out…

  • Kid’ Crafts: Do you have any craft ideas that are great for kids on your blog or web-site? The craft ideas can be made by kids, designed for kids to make or made for kids themselves…doesn’t matter. We just want your ideas at Craft Critique for our Kids Crafts Carnival. Share your ideas and reach the Craft Critique readers! Hurry! The Kid’s Crafts Carnival is on Wednesday so you need to submit your link by Midnight (CST) Tuesday May 29th! For more info, click on the link in this entry!
  • A Muse Art Stamps: I’m sure you’ve heard….but just in case you haven’t….A Muse Art Stamps is having a fabulous anniversary sale! Seven pages of darling stamps are on sale at 25% off and if you order 6 or more, you get an additional 15% off. I just had to get some darling beach stamps…couldn’t resist! 🙂 For all the details, check it out on Linda’s Blog…Happy Birthday News.
  • Snap Stamps are currently slanted for retirement.. If you love Snap Stamps and would like to see them continued, you CAN make a difference. Please e-mail and let them know that you wish to support the continuations of Snap Stamps, what you like about them and what you would like to see produced. Ellen Hutson has more details about this HERE. If you’d like to read more about Karen Foster Designs Snap Stamps, I wrote a tutorial/article on them a couple weeks ago…Karen Foster Snap Stamps {C’est Bon}.
  • Lizzie Anne Designs: The new release stamps are now available! Yeah! So darling…you need to check them out HERE! While you are there, sign up for their newsletter. I got mine this morning and it looks great!
  • Gina K Designs: Gina has some very cool new stamps called Scalloped Frames and Doodles that are specially designed to fit your Marvy Scalloped Punches. How cool is that?! She also has some very fun new summer releases…all with a beach theme.
  • Cards for Shane: Shane’s birthday is just two days away. There is still time to send him a card and help make his birthday wish come true. For more info see… Shane’s Wish. His address is …

Shane Bernier
PO Box 484
Lancaster, Ontario
K0C 1N0

It is a normal sunny Monday here in Ontario Canada. We are off to work, off to school and off to the doctor AGAIN! Happy Memorial Day to all my American Friends. Enjoy!

My Long Weekend…

This past weekend was the Canadian Victoria Day long weekend, the first long weekend of the summer. The weather was gorgeous both Saturday and Monday, just a little cool and wet on Sunday but we didn’t mind. 🙂 Victoria Day is also called the May 24 Long Weekend here. What we are actually celebrating, I had no idea until I Googled it! Any excuse for a day off suits us fine and usually we are just celebrating the beginning of wonderful weather, although that is not always the case. One year we went camping in tents and it actually snowed. I said…never again! Victoria Day is the day that we (apparently) celebrate the reigning monarch’s birthday. Now it doesn’t seem to matter when the Queen or King of England was actually born…we celebrate it on the Victoria Day weekend. 🙂


We managed to get to the beach on Saturday and play in the sand. The kids had a great time, especially the little boys. It didn’t take Joshua too long to get used to the sand again. LOL About 5 seconds! He was too young last year to remember it but as soon as he saw the water, he was yelling “boap” at the top of his lungs. (Translation: boat) I did promise some photos although I actually didn’t get many. Only the lake and the two smallest boys. My husband was busy at my parent’s cottage doing yard work and I spent most of the time running after the little boys. I did pull it out for a few shots but then put it safely away. It seemed the project of the day was to see how much sand they could get airborne and I was more than a little concerned about the health of my camera!


Monday was a great but busy day as well. My daughter and I headed off to the garden center. Not a great idea as it was packed. The May long weekend in Canada is traditionally the weekend when you plant your annuals. The danger of frost (we hope!) is past and time for our gardening. I was so excited to get quite a bit done. The garden has been rather neglected the past couple years and we bought some annuals and lots of new perennials. I love how they come up every year and I’ve learned to choose ones that are easy care and I just cannot kill. LOL Hostas, daylilies and irises work great for me and this climate.

To finish off a great long weekend, fireworks are always fun. I managed to get Joshua asleep early as he is scared of the noise but the older kids were having a great time running around the yard. My husband had bought them sparklers and some small fireworks. We are also close enough to see the large fireworks display in the park and were able to enjoy the best of both and still get everyone into bed at a reasonable time. My oldest son is on the archery team and came up with the bright idea to attach a sparkler to an arrow and shoot it. It actually worked and was quite a lot of fun although I’m not too sure on the safety issues! I fell into bed last night quite happy but exhausted. I had to laugh when I woke up in the middle of the night, still glowing. I had fallen asleep with a glow bracelet on my arm. 🙂