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Archive for August, 2011

Giving Well is Back!


Intentions are an interesting thing.

I had every intention of doing more than hang out with Cole and read a book today.  But the couch was comfy, Cole was content to play around me and the second Flavia deLuce novel was just as fun and engaging as the first.  How could I resist finding out how our chemistry-loving eleven-year-old detective and her trusty bicycle, Gladys solved the latest mysterious death in the English village of Bishop’s Lacey?

Of course my intentions disappeared into the wind.

I also had intended to offer a new “Giving Well” workshop at Big Picture Classes in 2010.  I had my list of projects ready to go.  Supplies were on hand.  I was just about to dive into developing the content when WHAM!, I was hit with pancreatitis.  I love being creative just like you do but I admit that it’s a little difficult to use a hot glue gun and spray paint from an ICU bed at the local hospital.  Instead of grabbing my paper trimmer, I found myself crafting ways to sneak an extra mouthful of ice chips to quench my intense thirst.  Hey, I didn’t say I wasn’t still creative while lying in the hospital – I just wasn’t using Mod Podge to express my latest ideas.

Luckily for me, Stacy and Kayce at Big Picture Classes waited patiently for me to heal enough to decide I was ready to give work a shot again.  Which brings us to August, 2011.  A year-and-a-half later, and the next installment of Giving Well is officially open for registration!

I must say that about a month ago I almost threw in the towel.  I had an infection and was feeling rotten but the deadline for all of my workshop content was looming over me like a huge black mother ship from Star Trek.  I considered putting the whole thing off another year, thinking that I had taken on too much, too soon.  But with the encouragement of the BPC team and a helpful Grandma and Grandpa who wisked my two-year-old away for a few days, I buckled down and got it done.

And now I’m happy.

I’m happy that I finished the task.  That always feels fabulous.  But I’m really happy that I get to share Giving Well 2011 with you.  It’s fun.  It’s a little different than past years.  It has a lot of home decor projects and will make you step out of your paper-crafting comfort zone and into the world of paint, canvases, flowers and other fun supplies.  Like always, the projects are simple but meaningful, with an emphasis on keeping things personal.  And they are ideas that can be used all year long for any gift-giving needs that you have.  Of course, I have designed many printables for you to use, which will only be available in the workshop (lucky you!).

My intentions might be a little bit delayed in coming to fruition but I welcome sharing these intentions with you.  Join me in Giving Well 2011.  We’ll explore how to give meaningful gifts and share all kinds of great ideas for hand-crafting your love.  And if you have taken one of my Giving Well classes in the past – these are all new projects so be sure to join in the fun.

I encourage you to invite your friends, sisters, moms, and daughters – many of these projects are simple enough for anyone – no matter their crafting level.

My intention was to offer this workshop a year ago but I thank you for being patient enough to wait till my body had decided it was ready to tackle it.  Click here to come on over to BPC.  I look forward to seeing you in class!

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I am sitting here at the computer and I see the little clock hit noon on the day after our family reunion.  Cole is still asleep.  I keep checking his video monitor to make sure he has moved or is stirring because his normal routine is to be ready for the day by 6:30 am.  Is this all there is to it?  Just take away his nap and put him in the pool for 4 hours the night before and he’ll sleep in?  Heaven.  All of it.  It certainly doesn’t hurt that while in the pool he is making his way up the ladder in the deep end, around to the diving board, taking a running leap off the end, popping up with the words, “See that?!!” and heading to the ladder again.  The ultimate in toddler Circuit Training.

Who needs a pool when the neighbors have interesting sprinklers?

No fear.  All fun.  His favorite person to be with?  Anyone who will play with him.  That’s a party in his mind and for Cole, a party including water means ultimate happiness.  Because of his overall fishiness, I have put him in private swimming lessons this year with Jason, his fabulous 18-year-0ld, Red Cross certified cousin.  Private swimming lessons are hard to come by around here and for a toddler, it’s even more challenging to find a good option.  So we trek the 30 minutes it takes to get to my brother’s house and enjoy the pool, the view, and the serene environment.  No crazy chlorine-filled rec center to endure.  Just Jas, a lawn chair, and a two-year-old learning how to float on his back without folding up like a little potato bug.

This is summer.  This is bliss.  And the fact that we get to do it with family makes it even more perfect.  Jas will be serving a mission for the LDS Church in Canada starting in October.  Of course I’m thrilled he is going but I admit that I’m already sad that he won’t be here next summer to continue Cole’s lessons.  I’m doing a soft-sell on my other nephew, Ryan to take Jason’s place next year.

In the meantime, we will eek out as many days in the pool as we can.  Relishing the idea that the other kids have to start school in a couple of weeks and we can have Jas all to ourselves in the still-hot weather of August and September.

Cole and Jas - buddies in and out of the water

What a summer.  Sure beats last year when I was either in the hospital or hobbling my way to the doctor’s office.  My body couldn’t handle any heat and it prevented me from spending more than a few minutes in the shade, much less the sun.  I missed a lot last summer.  But I’m not missing it this year.  My to-do list is comprised of just a few things, with swimming lessons at the top.  I’m still sun-sensitive but there is a lot of fun that can happen in a poolside Adirondack chair under the pergola while Cole shows off his latest trick: sitting on the edge of the pool, hands up like a rocket ship and “diving” off.  The kid has never been afraid of a belly-flop, that’s for sure.

And speaking of the little guy….Good morning, Cole!  How was your sleep?  I’m so happy to see you!  Yep, let’s get you some cereal.

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