project life: week four in yellow and aqua...

This week came together super fast, even with adding more hand detailing and even some stitching (I've missed that!). Editing and printing many of the photos during the week proved to be a huge time saver today. Sometimes, printing ahead just makes thing less cohesive but, I tried to be mindful this week of the digital brushes I was using, colors I had in mind and deciding on a few black and whites.

The aqua and yellow colors this week? Yes, they are ever present in the Seafoam edition and in January's Citrus Twist PL kit. But, I think I just needed a dose of sunshine and spring after the frigid week stuck at home with two sick kiddos! So here is week 4...

{January 21 - 27}
Heavy on the the Citrus Twist kit elements here. Loved that bottom left card (Pebbles) with the doily/stamp combo! Talking about the weather and the kids' colds, Mr. Boom at work on one of his bridges, a quirk of G's right now and a cute moment between the boys...

Notice I didn't use a 4x6 date card this week. Well, not traditionally. Instead, I used a digital version to hold a few of my favorite Instagram images and embellished it with a couple of stickers after printing. Jack loves to dance and clap, G the baker's assistant, a weather snapshot, a favorite snack and grinning over fresh baked cookies...

Behind the Seafoam 5 senses card, I added a recipe - the exact recipe G was whisking together in the black and white photo above. Try these Pumpkin Muffins...so easy and good!

 A detail shot of some of the Citrus Twist PL Kit elements in use...

And another closer look at the doily/stamp detail...

Lastly, a little hand-stitched heart...
And week four is a wrap!


it's always an outtake...

trying to get a decent photo
of two boys in perpetual motion is
getting a smile directly in the camera
from one out of two 

you'll see this again in 
project life week 5
because, really?
how could i not?


thankful thursday...

I was inspired by my wonderful cousin to write a thankful post today. It is brutally cold for our part of New York. Ten degrees right now and it rarely gets below freezing here on the river. Yesterday G woke up with an awful cold and we are stuck for a bit. It's all okay...we have a warm home and staying inside challenges out creativity.

Today, I am thankful for...

Extra cuddles with both boys
A long nap for Jack
George's good humor, despite not feeling well
The boys playing well together all day
No time-outs
George enjoying helping in the kitchen...
Jack finally showing me his teeth for a photo...
Mr. Boom arriving home safe after a day working outside in the cold
and, my mother in law making a batch of chicken soup for dinner!

What are you thankful for today?


project life: week 3

Tuesdays are my Project Life day. While I usually edit most of my photos, print some and do some journaling during the week, Tuesday is my day to bring it all together. You may notice that this week looks a bit skimpy on the handwritten journaling. It isn't. I just chose to use some of my Citrus Twist PL kit goodies and to have hidden notes/pull-outs. Still there, just tucked away ;-)

{January  14 - 20}
A snowy day, comfort food, and hilarious things the boys say inside the bi-fold journaling card. The weekly card was made in PSE with the Seafoam digital kit and a digital freebie (the arrow)
 Mr. Boom's work week, the boys at play, hilarity with the computer camera while I grocery shopped and left the three guys alone and pull-out journaling in that awesome kraft polka dot bag from my CT kit (I want 100 more!)
There is an insert with 6 of my favorite Instagram photos from the week and I am in one of those. Still making the effort to get my self in the pictures and leave evidence I was there. Committed to doing that!
After my organization post last week, Jac asked how I have my "regular" scrapbooking supplies organized. The answer is: they aren't, not really. Since I am only doing PL right now my other supplies are packed away. I have some on the shelves in the boys' closet (paper holders mainly) and the rest is packed away in my in-laws' basement until they one day have their own home. In the past two years I have donated a lot of my supplies and was fairly ruthless about what I kept. There is still more than enough. 

Once I have a dedicated space I'll re-assess. I LOVE LOVE LOVE Project Life and the thought of doing traditional layouts isn't even appealing at the moment. So, if I decide at some point that this is the only system I'll ever use, the Girl Scouts will be getting a massive donation.


recipe: hearty butternut squash, chicken and quinoa stew

I tried this Pinterest recipe find back in the fall, to rave reviews and it has now become a comfort food staple in our meal rotation. Hearty, delicious and healthy. It is a multi-step recipe that takes time but, is so worth it! It feeds the four of us for 2 meals. Mr. Boom loves it even though he is not normally a fan of squash.

Original pin here...Hearty Chicken Stew with Butternut Squash & Quinoa

I took this photo as soon as I finished cooking this stew last Friday on a very cold New York afternoon. Notice the lack of olives in my version (because, well, not my thing).
  • 1 1/2 lb. butternut squash, peeled, seeded & chopped into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 3 1/2 cups chicken broth (I use the full 32 oz carton)
  • 1 1/2 lb. boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt (I use Penzy's 4S seasoned salt)
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 can (14 oz) petite diced tomatoes
  • 2/3 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 3/4 cup pitted and quartered kalamata olives (I omit)
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
  1. Steam the butternut squash until barely tender, about 10 minutes. Remove half of the squash pieces and set aside.
  2. Steam the remaining squash until very tender, an additional 4 to 6 minutes. Mash this squash with the back of a fork. Set aside.
  3. In a large saucepan set over medium-high heat, bring the chicken broth to a simmer.
  4. Add chicken thighs, cover, and cook until chicken is cooked through, about 15 minutes.
  5. Transfer the chicken thighs to a plate and allow to cool. Pour broth into a medium-sized bowl.
  6. Return the saucepan to the stovetop and lower heat to medium. Add olive oil.
  7. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is starting to turn brown, 8 to 10 minutes.
  8. Add minced garlic and oregano. Cook, stirring, for 1 additional minute.
  9. To the saucepan, add tomatoes, butternut squash pieces, mashed butternut squash. Stir to combine.
  10. Stir in reserved chicken broth and quinoa. Bring to a simmer, cover and cook until the quinoa turns translucent, about 15 minutes.
  11. Shred the chicken with your fingers or a fork.
  12. Stir the chicken, olives and pepper into the stew and simmer, uncovered, to heat, about 5 minutes.
  13. Stir in parsley and serve.
Notes: Calories 329 / Total Fat 14.1g / Saturated Fat 1.0 / Cholesterol 15.2mg / Sodium 1209mg / Total Carbohydrates 32.8g / Fiber 5.4g / Sugars 3.0g / Protein 19.4g / WW (Old Points) 7 / WW (Points+) 9

Credit: http://www.cookincanuck.com/2011/11/hearty-chicken-stew-with-butternut-squash-quinoa-recipe/


snow day...

Wednesday morning we woke up to a ground covering of snow. Nothing significant, just heavy, messy and enough to keep us inside. So no errands or grocery runs, just a day of pajamas and play at home. I'll take it...


project life: reorganized

Yes, a third blog post in one week. No one faint. I'm going to try and connect a bit better this year. 

I mentioned in my post yesterday that I reorganized my Project Life supplies at the beginning of the month. Over the last year, I figured out what I like best as "extras" in my album. Mainly, they are things that still keep the process simple but, help fulfill my need to create beyond the core kit. So the things that I no longer used? Purged. Gone. One of my themes for this year is simplify. If I'm not using it, it doesn't have a place here. Tossing the old allowed me to fit all of the supplies I use (other than my album and core kit) in ONE Expedit cube/bin. One bin that I can easily pull out and bring to the dining table during my scheduled Tuesday PL time or in the evenings. My supplies this year are simplified:
Putting it all together in the way that helps me work efficiently, I found three boxes at Target from the Rubbermaid Bento line. Two medium, one small. Better yet, I had some Christmas money to use and they were on sale. Score! I love that they have straight sides (a must, no wasted space due to tapering) and little pull out corner boxes that you can use, or not, to make the boxes even more organized. Hint: the little 3x4" PL card boxes are a perfect fit in the pull out corners. Here's what's inside...

Box 1: In the front left are the pieces of the January Citrus Twist kit, the cards, extras, straight back to the first 6x 6 pad (also part of the kit). Several 6x6 paper pads, 3x4 PL box of assorted journaling cards, my pens, pencil, scissors and journaling ruler. Wood mount stamps on top of my black ink pads. And, in the back right corner, my Tiny Attacher and extra staples, eraser, a few mists and photo splits

 Box 2 (small): Assorted tags and cut-outs from Elle's Studio, glassine envelopes for holding ephemera, little labels and some smaller sticker sheets

Box 3: In the front left corner are 3x4 journaling cards and the coordinating Bazzill pack that went with the Cobalt kit (sad these aren't being offered any longer) and my favorite, much used Martha Stewart file folder labels (looooove these). Behind these are various sticker and label sheets and my larger packs of clear stamps (yes, in the original packaging because I haven't found anything better...yet). On the right are my roller stamps, most used washi tape and single unmounted stamps with my acrylic stamp block. The empty space in the middle? I'll use that week to week for ephemera that I want to include in the album.

 That's all.
Three little boxes + core kit + trimmer + adhesive + album.
My Project Life 2013.

Feel free to ask any questions about my organization, process or products and I'll do my best to answer individually or in a follow up post. Thanks for stopping by!


hello 2013 project life!

So nice to welcome this year with a fresh binder, new and waiting for the memories to jump in. And a new kit. I waited on this post for one very important part of this year's process...Seafoam.

My core kit finally, after waiting forever arrived last night! I ended up splitting the kit in half with a friend of mine. Although I second guessed the decision when I first opened the box (oooooo!! pretty!) but, I know myself. I still have over half of the Cobalt cards remaining from last year after doing so many hybrid pieces. I don't need a whole kit. So, I counted out and packaged up half to ship out today. Another reason for the split is that my generous and amazing husband gifted me a subscription to the Citrus Twist PL monthly kit. With the core kit plus a monthly kit brimming with supplies, I'll have plenty to work with this year.

To start the new year, I completely reorganized all of my Project Life supplies and purged anything that was repetitive or no longer useful. Streamlined into three bins that fit nicely in one Expedit cubby along with my trimmer and tape gun. I'll post on that soon but, for now, here are my first two weeks of 2013 - completed.

I learned so much about the way I work on this project and how to stay current over the past year: printing at home, working on it bit by bit through the week when I have a minute or two and scheduling dedicated time each week. Sticking with what works seems like a good plan...

{January 1 - 6}
I didn't have my paper Seafoam kit the first week and didn't want to fall behind so, I used the digital version of the kit. Love having the flexibility! Starting off with a Greek New Year celebration, family goals for the year, cost of living current to the week, YiaYia's birthday and G's three year well visit stats
 New bedroom furniture, getting back into a routine after the holidays and life with boys
 {January 7 - 13}
Jack turned 11 months (eek!) and was NOT cooperative for his photo, he also climbed a ladder (by himself!), play dates, a lunch staple, and bits of our week. That "hello" cut on the first 3x4 card? One of the awesome new metal dies just introduced by The Crafter's Workshop!
 Getting outside, preschool open house for G and learning to use scissors. There is an insert for this week but, it's all photos so, I refrained from sharing.

Are you doing Project Life this year? I'd love to see!


goodbye 2012, hello brand new year!

2012 was very good to us. A beautiful new baby, celebrating three years of marriage, career advancement for Mr. Boom and being able to realize my dream of becoming a stay at home mom. We fondly bid farewell to the year and welcomed in 2013 with hope that, it too, will hold fantastic times for our family.

I left off my last Project life post with two weeks to go in last years album so, will share my final layouts now...

{December 17 - 23)
Baking cookies, photo ornaments, the true meaning of Christmas and a little pirate...
 Our nativity set arrives, we celebrated Christmas with my cousin and her family, made a gingerbread house and discovered Jack's new favorite play space:
 {December 24 - 31}
G's birthday (he has his own insert) and everything Christmas. The bottom two photos on this page are of the boys with their Santa gifts.
 G's THIRD birthday insert (back not shown):
 Even more Christmas insert (back not shown):
 More of our week of celebration...
I'll be very honest that I never finished an opening page for 2012 and am still working on the closing page. I'm not worried about either of these. The important stuff is in the middle
As for the rest of my 2012 PL album? There are a few things left to print. Photos from February (journaling is all done) and one week in the beginning of September that needs finishing with a LOT of photos. I'll get there. But, I'm not stressing it at all. Instead, I have moved on to a brand new year with new photos, memories and documentation. Bring it on!
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