Thursday, December 2, 2010

New Note Cards

Ink Damask Thank You Card
Create custom thank you cards at
View the entire collection of cards.

Maya and Maxwell's First Christmas

I just received this photo book the other day and am thrilled how it turned out! This is one of the projects I was working on in my last post. I created every page in Photoshop using Karen Funk's Christmas Magic kit and a few templates from Yin Designs.

I have several Shutterfly photo books now using both my designs and Shutterfly's own design templates. I love them! They also make great gifts! *wink wink*

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Projects abound

One of the hardest struggles of being a new mom, especially a new stay at home mom of multiples, can be losing interest in or more accurately TIME to do the things you once enjoyed. This was true for me. I used to knit, scrapbook, take photos of nature...all these things I used to create I put aside when I created the two most beautiful children in the world. (Sorry, I'm just amazed at these two little people.)

As much as I adore staying home with my children, I do miss creating. But with a long break comes a huge creative block. Every time I sat down to make a scrapbook page, it felt forced. But I've been searching for inspiration and inch by inch I'm chipping away at that block.

Here is my first attempt:

I downloaded a template from The Digital Scrapper blog to get me started. I wanted to enter the challenge, but was late. I have an 8x8 Shutterfly book sitting in my account to use for the kids first birthday this layout may or may not end up there.

There was another challenge which I did enter and I'm very pleased with this one:

I'm very proud of this page. I huge chunk of the creative block has broken off and I'm getting in the groove again!

Next project...this blog. Notice the new look? It's still a work in progress, but I'm getting there.

Then the other day my Real Simple magazine came. There was a gorgeous layout on chunky knits. I was especially drawn to a scarf that basically was a large knit ring that you wrap around your neck a couple times. It was about $35 at the Loft. (I tried to find it online, but they only had a lighter version of it.) It was a simple knit stitch so I ran out and bought some bamboo/wool yarn.

But that's for another blog post. Stay tuned...I haven't even mentioned the holiday's yet!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Really want to win this...

Yeah, that g.c. for the Photoshop actions! Here's a link:

I'm slowly working on starting a small niche photography business. At the kids first birthday party, I wanted to take all these photos...but I was also party hostess and coordinator and didn't have time or opportunity to grab the camera for many shots. Also, these were my kids! I didn't want them to look at the pictures in the future and wonder why Mommy wasn't at their party.

Thankfully my sister in law stepped in with my camera and caught a lot of those precious moments we can look back on, but what about the other moms out there?

My business is still in the works as I work on marketing, pricing and a portfolio. I've shot a couple events already and am happy to report that everyone has been pleased with my work.

More later! This contest has been a great motivator for me to get back to my blog. :)

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Back again!

It's a well known fact that we love Halloween! We actually start preparing Nov. 1 of the year before. It's even more fun with the kids. Last year they were Thing 1 and Thing 2 from Cat in the Hat.

(I was a Cat in the Hat)

So even though it's only September...I already have their costumes for this year. 

Would you deny candy to these kids? I think not!

Gina Rae Photography still has her giveaway for Photoshop actions at Four Hens Photography: 

I've only played around with the freebie actions, but Four Hens has amazing actions!

More tomorrow!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Yeah, it's been awhile.

So I have a lot to update. In fact that's why I haven't written...things just keep happening and I get further and further behind. Also I have 16 month old not much time to get much done on the computer. Oh and I'm starting my own business. AND I have to completely revise how I eat and exercise--doctor's orders. Scary.

 More on that later....

But I do love giveaways! Especially photography/Photoshop giveaways. Gina Rae Photography is giving away a $40 give card to My Four Hens Photography. Here's the link: 

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Happy Mother's Day

This is my first Mother's Day with my children. It's a day that has been long coming, and seeing those shining faces wake me up this morning filled my heart with more love than I could have ever known.

The last two Mother's Days, I was pregnant. Two years ago, I didn't know I was pregnant for the first time. However, that pregnancy wouldn't last.

Last year, I was VERY pregnant with Maya and Maxwell. I was on bed rest with high blood pressure. Maya and Maxwell didn't even have names yet! They would end up missing Mother's Day by two days, but that's ok. They are almost one year old and I feel great!

But I believe I became a mother long before I first saw my children. I don't remember exactly when it happened, but it was about the time I started thinking less of myself and more of my future children.

I remember that episode of Friends where Chandler and Monica are meeting with a potential birth mother and ended up lying to her. Chandler went to the angry mother and tried to explain their actions. He said something like "I have a lot to learn to become a father, but Monica's already a mother...she just doesn't have a baby yet." (That was totally paraphrased.) I thought that was so beautiful.

I'm not the only mother I know who is celebrating a first Mother's Day today. So to the mothers celebrating their first and their nth Mother's Day, I wish you the happiest of days!

And to those mothers who don't have their babies yet, I wish you a Happy Mother's Day also.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Pampers Village: Connect with real parents like you!

"When Maxwell and Maya were born the hospital used Huggies diapers. We were not impressed. So when we got home, we went out to try Pampers Swaddlers...we LOVED them! Now the kids have moved on to Cruisers, which we also love.

We also go through a lot of diapers, so we like a little reward. We signed up with the Pampers rewards program and every time we buy diapers or wipes, we enter the codes on the Pampers Village Web site. In return, we've traded in points for Sesame Street books, Shutterfly items, gift cards...etc.

It's a great program. I definitely recommend it to all moms!"
On Pampers Village, you can share tips, support, and experiences with real parents like you. You’ll discover more about parenthood through articles, videos, and online tools, and receive offers, samples, and coupons!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Help me raise money for March for Babies!

March of Dimes is a cause very near and dear to my heart. I will be walking in the March for Babies walk on April 17, 2010. 

Every day, thousands of babies are born too soon, too small and often very sick. I'm walking in March for Babies because I want to do something about this. And I need your help.

In May 2009, my twin daughter and son, Maya and Maxwell, were born at 36 weeks and 2 days. Maya weighed 5 lbs 10 oz. and Maxwell weighed 4 lbs 10 oz. I was fortunate to have the best prenatal care, but many women do not have this opportunity. Sometimes, even with the best prenatal care, babies are still born too small or too early. But every baby deserves the best chance, and that is why I am walking! 

Maya and Maxwell doubled their weight quickly and are now becoming active toddlers. I'm excited to walk with them for March of Dimes!

Please support my walk. Making a secure donation is easy: just click the 'donate now' button on this page. Thank you for helping me give all babies a healthy start!

The mission of March of Dimes is to improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth, and infant mortality.

Monday, February 8, 2010

A few of my new favorite things...

As a mother of young multiples, it's very easy to forget the things that make you, YOU and focus exclusively on baby land. But every once in a while it's good to indulge just a little. Here are a couple things that made my life a little easier:

 The Ipod Touch. No not an iPhone, but it has plenty of the features without the monthly charge. This was a lifesaver during the first couple months of motherhood. There are several great apps for parents, including Baby Geek. The most useful though, Just Light. It's simply a white screen that provides a soft light. I still use it during my before bed breathing checks. I can see them, but the light isn't bright enough to interrupt their sleep. And it's FREE! This gadget also provided middle of the night entertainment while I was up alone pumping milk for the next day. I played games, watched YouTube and read books.


Kashi Dark Mocha Almond bars, aka "Crack bars"  Chocolate, almonds, fiber with a subtle rich coffee taste...enough said. NO one takes my Crack Bars.

Kindle, aka Otis. I never thought I could read on a gadget, but I downloaded the Kindle app on my iPod and read "The Book Thief" for book club only weeks after having my babies. This was my birthday gift from Andy and I love it. I read a lot of historical fiction so if I want to read more about the subject of the book, I can scroll down to the name or place and instantly access the Wikipedia entry. Yes, I can do this by going to my computer too, but I often read in bed at night. I would make mental notes to look something up, but always forgot. It's not for everyone, but it works for me!

This is a new discovery! I had a gift card to Bath and Body Works and was desperately in need of a good lotion for my winter dry skin. I'm kinda cheap and my other lotions were not doing anything. This costs $15, which is expensive for me, but I had a gift card. Wow! My skin feels as good as the babies!
A pop-up camera flash is one of my biggest pet peeves. I prefer not to use it at all, but the lighting in the house in the winter isn't the best, especially for those impromptu snapshots. Then I found the Opteka Universal Soft Screen Flash Diffuser. Wow! No more deer caught in the headlights photos. It fits over the pop up flash of your DSLR in seconds and the harsh flash is instantly softened. And it's less than $10. 
Of course, I can't finish without a picture of my two most favorite things:

 Maya and Maxwell--8 months
before I had the flash diffuser
Next favorite baby related items that make life easier for mom and babies.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Busy, busy, busy...

Ok I'm still lacking on the blogging thing.... Sue me.

Another house hits the market! Yes, we're finally moving! After almost 10 years and all the new toys from last Christmas, we're running out of room and need to expand. So our house will be officially on the market by the end of the week and we can start looking for a new home. I'm very excited! Even though Andy and I were dating when he bought this house, I really didn't have much say. So to me this will kinda be my first house. And the decor and organization will be how I set it up.

Here are some of our requirements:
  • at least 3 bedrooms and 2 full bathrooms
  • maintenance free siding
  • two living areas
  • a decent size kitchen with a dishwaster (goodbye dishpan hands!)
  • at least a two car garage
  • a good sized yard (preferably fenced in)
Here are some things we would like to have:
  • a dining room
  • first floor laundry
  • fireplace (I've just always wanted one.)
  • a finished basement
There's more...but I'm drawing a blank. We're really not expecting to have trouble finding something, but hopefully we can sell our house pretty quick.

Because I just don't have enough to do, raising almost nine month old twins and all, I decided that I needed to start making our own baby food. Ever since I was pregnant, I've read about how easy it was...even in my twins books. My friends did it too.

So I started with peas. Why? Good question. I HATE peas! We had a couple jars in the cupboard, but I've been putting them off. But Andy gave them peas one night and raved how much they loved them. And peas were the first recipe in my baby cookbook. And homemade pureed peas looked so much prettier than the Gerber variety.

I bought some frozen peas, a steam basket and used my new food processor.


My eager little testers...
It was pretty easy. However, Maya and Maxwell didn't feel the same about Mommy's peas as they did for Gerber's.
The short of it...both gagged then Maxwell vomited all over. 
My first cooking experience for my children and my son vomits! I shared my news with the Facebook world, and was quickly assured that not many kids like their mom's peas. In fact I reread the section in that twins book and the author admitted that her twins didn't like peas either. Stupid cookbook.

I admit that I haven't tried again, but I would like to try some applesauce because that's their favorite, but I'm a little scared. Maybe Gerber isn't so bad after all...

Sunday, January 17, 2010

New and Improved in 2010...

I can't tell you how long I've written and rewritten this blog post in my head.

In 2009, I wrote only five times. After five years of infertility, I finally became a mother (x2!) but as I would sit down to write, my mind would go blank. Even now, I find myself struggling for words.

There's a couple of reasons for this. First, I have infant twins...I'm freaking exhausted and it's amazing I can manage to put a couple words together. Second, it's been a few years since I've really had to put a couple words together, which is sad because at one time writing was my job. My most recent corporate job didn't require stellar writing skills. And when you don't use it, you lose it.

After I became a mom, I wasn't sure what direction I wanted to take this blog. I started it as a way to express myself creatively and share my photography and scrapbooking. Along the way it became a sounding board with my struggle with depression and infertility and included many anecdotes about my fun loving dogs, who kept me sane for so long. The most natural transition, I think, would be to turn this blog over to the antics and milestones of my children. But I'm not going to do that.

Why? The other day I looked in the mirror and didn't recognize the person looking back. A month or so ago, I found myself in a crowd of people and I didn't know how to act. I've been thinking about writing on this blog for months now, but I couldn't come up with words to write.

I think all women feel like they lose themselves a bit when they become mothers, but when you've been trying to become a mother for so many years, it's hard to look back and remember who you were.

But this is a new time...a new and exciting time. So Creative Musings will continue to be my creative musings on life and art and dogs, but will also reflect my new role and journey as a domestically-challenged stay at home mom of multiples. I can't promise great writing, grammar and spelling, but hopefully with a little practice I'll get there.