January 30, 2012

Unique to US


































With Valentine's Day coming up, I thought this page was appropriate.

I was talking to my Aunt yesterday and she was talking about how the men in romance novels don't exist. And while I agree with that statement, I don't want to say romance is lost...I think it's just different.

I find that Ryan and I are unique in that way. I think all couples are. What qualifies as romance, depends on who you are romancing :)

Ryan brings home diet coke & dinner plans, rather than flowers and candy. Quality conversation is often found while doing chores or driving around town to keep Zoe asleep. Date nights are often spent on the couch watching re-runs of Better off Ted or How I met your Mother, with a pint of Ben & Jerry's.

Ryan has also been in the habit lately of making breakfast on the weekends and letting me sleep in.

I've been a busy bee lately, working on pages and a new quilt, I'm using a timer to keep me productive. You'd be amazed at that simple motivation.

Do you use anything to keep yourself on task, even when you're doing fun project? I'd love to hear some new ideas.

XOXO,
Holly & Co. Pin It Now!

January 29, 2012

Why Create?

Yesterday, while driving home from the craft store thinking about my next project, I was reminded of a talk I heard in General Conference a few years ago, by President  Dieter F. Uchtdorf, entitled, "Happiness, Your Heritage"
It's a wonderful talk, and even those who aren't of the LDS faith, I believe would enjoy it as well.

This is my favorite part,

"Creation brings deep satisfaction and fulfillment.
 We develop ourselves and others when we take unorganized matter into our hands
 and mold it into something of beauty."

I feel like I could end this post right there.

I'm very lucky to have a supportive husband who enjoys my creations and doesn't mind the occasional trip to the craft store. I'm lucky to have friends and family that take the time to look at my scrapbooking and appreciate it.

But even if I didn't have those things, I would probably still create, because like the statement above, it truly does bring me satisfaction and fulfillment.

 I made a layout just for me. Not for any other reason, than I wanted to play with paper and write down my feelings about the relationship between Zoe and I currently.




































I had so much fun making this page last night. I hope you take the time to create this week. 
I've got some fun stuff I'm planning for February, including a BIG giveway weekend, so stay close by.

XOXO,
Holly & Co.
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January 27, 2012

Quick Share


Just a quick layout share today.
I apologize for the colors being a little off, there's only about 30 minutes of good light in the house during the day to take pictures, and this morning I slept through it.

This is Zoe and her cousin Noah on Christmas eve by the tree. Christmas eve was actually a really rough night for all of us, both kids were sick, but at least I got this cute photo before the commotion.

Have a great weekend!

XOXO,
Holly & Co.
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January 26, 2012

Good Things

Good things are happening.

I apologize for it being so quiet around here... it's been a rough couple of weeks. No need for details, but an overview - flooding, coughing, crying, sleeping, etc.

Anyway, back to good things.
Today it snowed. Not like a slight dusting, but a nice big snow!


Yesterday, Zoe got to attend a princess birthday party. She had so much fun, I thought she might explode from the excitement.

My sickness is on the mend. Whew, for the past few days, I've been afraid that I might just cough up a lung. But thanks to Nyquil + 11 hours of sleep last night, I think I'm over the worst of it. Plus side of being sick : I've watched 6 seasons of Cheers on Netflix :)

I played with paper a few days ago, for the first time in....well....too long let just say.

I'm finally liking my Fuji Instax camera. I got this for Christmas, and I love the size of the print, but I hadn't had one picture turn out, until the big snow today! I think I'm finally getting a handle on this little thing.


Also, I'm really grateful I went to the grocery store yesterday. We are all stocked up and can just enjoy being warm and cozy together.


I snapped this picture while we were enjoying some hot chocolate after coming inside from building a mini snowman. I think it's my new favorite. Thank goodness for iPhone pictures :)

XOXO,
Holly & Co.
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January 21, 2012

ShortCuts

Due to some unforseen circumstances, my office/scrap room is out of commission, as is my regular computer, so today I am blogging to you from my laptop.

I'm not shy about my love for Pinterest and how it has completely changed the way I cook. Every recipe I have made off there is good, and most of the recipes I've made more than once.

I definitely cook more now, and I cook better tasting and better quality meals (and dessserts!)

My mom is a big fan of Sandra Lee and her Semi-Homemade recipes. I, having been a working mother for the past almost 4 years, am a big fan of quick and easy.

I thought I would share a few of my cooking shortcuts, which enable me to still make yummy meals, but save on the work.

1. Bread maker. I got a breadmaker as a wedding gift and while I've never actually cooked a loaf of bread in it, I use it all the time. I just the the dough setting, dump in all the ingredients, and it does the mixing and rising for me. (that's one of the best features, it heats up the dough to make it rise) And who doesn't love fresh baked bread?

2. Frozen foods. I know this might seem a little obvious, but frozen veggies and meats make putting a meal together really easy. Take tonight for example... I threw some lightly breaded organic chicken nuggets in the oven, steamed some stir fry veggies in the microwave, and made minute rice on the stove. I added a little seasame ginger sauce on the chicken and voila, we had chicken stir fry in under 10 minutes.  I usually buy mine prepacked,  but you could easily buy or grow fresh and freeze on your own

3. Stacking. This involves a little bit of planning, but well worth the effort. If I have dishes throughout the week that include some of the same ingredients, like chopped onions or cooked chicken, I just double the amount and chop it all at once, or cook it all at once.

I hope these tips help you out a little bit, and if you are looking for new recipes, head on over to my Pinterest page, and look on my "Yummy" Board.Link is over here------------------------------>

XOXO,
Holly & CO. Pin It Now!

January 16, 2012

Ramblings.

Goodness, I have been tired today.
I'm not quite sure what the problem is, but I fell asleep at 6pm.
Thankfully, I grabbed some herbal tea, apples and peanut butter and I'm a little more awake. But I have a feeling I will be hitting the hay a little early tonight.

I'm sad to say that we didn't play laser tag on Saturday, so I didn't get to defend my title. The boys were being lame and wanted to go home and play video games. ::Lame::

Today, I went by our thrift store and picked up a few things. A scarf for Zoe for a winter photoshoot, a house shaped shadow box for an upcoming project and a wooden plaque, that is currently drying with chalkboard paint on it.
Our thrift store isn't huge, but it seems every time I go I find some little treasure, and this trip I only spent $2.75 :)

A few days ago, Ryan bought this book. Tonight, Ryan made a sauce from the book and it was amazing. It would taste good on anything, but we had it with tacos.


One more layout share, This is Aly's husband Ryan, who introduced me and my husband. When I met him we called him by his last name, "Willis," although it wasn't until we had been friends for about a year, I learned his real name was Ryan too. 

(I asked Aly to send me some things she loves about Willis, so the journaling is from her:)

XOXO,
Holly & Co.
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January 14, 2012

Happy Scrappy Saturday

We had a really lazy morning today, complete with daddy pancakes (which means mommy didn't have to make them :)
We are finally all getting dressed and ready for the day. We're going out for a little bit, and then celebrating our friend, Preston's 30th birthday tonight, complete with laser tag. The last time we did this, I won. Yep, me.
Not gonna lie, it felt good to beat the guys that play Metal Gear all the time. I will report back tomorrow our stats.

But for now, I'll leave you with this bright layout I did of the Willis Family, using the Studio Calico December kit.

Seriously, I adore these pictures of them.



I hope your day is awesome!

XOXO,
Holly & Co. Pin It Now!

January 13, 2012

Elle's Studio Sketch - 1/12/12


































I saw the sketch up over at Elle's Studio this week and wanted to play along. Here is my version.



Hope you are having a wonderful weekend!

XOXO,
Holly & Co. Pin It Now!

January 12, 2012

I almost forgot...

I tried a new cupcake flavor this week!

On Monday, my BFF and I went out to soothe her after a terrible-horrible-no good- very bad day. We indulged in a little treat and laughing until we cried. It was just what the Dr. ordered.


This new flavor was Fluffer Nutter. It's a peanut butter cupcake topped with a peanut butter ganache, and a marshmallow buttercream. It was tasty, but rich. If you are a peanut butter lover, this one is definitely for you.

It doesn't break my top 5, but it's always fun to try new flavors.

I'll be back tomorrow with a few more layouts.

XOXO,
Holly & Co. Pin It Now!

January 11, 2012

Follow Your Heart


































I love when an idea pops into my head and I can translate it so easily onto paper.

My dear friend, Aly, gave me permission to scrap her most recent family photos. I have known Aly and her husband for about 7 years, I have been so privileged to watch them go from dating to married to parents. They have been wonderful friends to us over the years and I'm so glad that we live in the same small, dinky town :)

There will be a few more pages to follow this one. Aly, this one is for you :)

XOXO,
Holly & Co. Pin It Now!

January 10, 2012

School Pictures

This was the first time Zoe had ever had real school pictures, and I have to admit, my first instinct was to not order them.
My school pictures were always terrible, and I take hundreds, if not thousands of picture of Zoe a year, do I really need to pay $25 for the package get the class picture?
Well after some advice on Facebook and talking to Ryan, I decided to get them. I am so glad I did.


She actually smiled. And her hair actually remained fairly under control.
That morning while we were getting her ready, I told her to listen to the photographer, sit still, and smile pretty. Her teacher told me that afternoon when we picked her up, that she did everything I asked her to, and was one of the easiest ones to photograph.
(I guess being a paparazzi mom does have it's benefits)

This is actually a 2 page layout, with 2 different sized layouts.
Here is the second page, with her whole class.


The hand cut out is something Zoe brought home in October and I've kept it on my desk hoping for some way to use it. I thought this was the perfect way to showcase her at preschool.

All supplies are from Amy Tan's collection.

Tonight, I am taking my wonderful friend out for a much needed treat, thank goodness for cupcakes :)

Happy Tuesday.

XOXO,
Holly & Co.
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January 9, 2012

One Hundred and Crazy Percent

Do you ever feel like when you get an idea or thought, you just run with it? And I'm not talking about a leasurly stroll with it, I mean a full on sprint, like  running from a bear into it?

Well that's the meaning of one hundred and crazy percent. And that is where I am at.
 (It's a quote from the sadly cancelled show, Better Off Ted)

This year I decided to get our emergency prepardness up to snuff, since we were severly lacking in that area.

Well we're 9 days into the year and I am proud to report, we are doing amazing amounts better than we have the past 5 years of our marriage. I discovered a Survival Superstore here in town, with amazing amounts of stuff, gadgets and books, but that wasn't the best part of the discovery. They have free classes every week and if you miss a class, they upload videos of them online for viewing, for FREE.

The man I met with there was a fountain of knowledge and I came away with a few purchases and a stack of papers full of recipes and resources.He answered all of my questions and made great recommendations about where to start for a small family of just 3.

Their website is http://www.basicliving.com/ and they have a weekly newsletter full of great information. I am not affiliated with them in any way, but I feel like it would be a waste to not share all this great information I have found.

And yes, my food storage finds are being included in my Project Life 2012.

Here is my PL 2012 coverpage.

(I know there are lots of photos of Zoe, we need to get family pictures taken. I promise it's on the to do list)

Have a great Monday!

XOXO,
Holly & CO. Pin It Now!

January 6, 2012

Doily Banner

Happy Friday everyone. First of all, thank you for all the sweet comments on my last post. I am truly blessed with such wonderful friends, in life and online :)

I've been putting the finishing touches on my craft room/office this week, trying to get it all organized. My craft room is finally starting to look like a craft room instead of a junk room. But it needed some decorations.

When I was in Utah over the holiday, I made this fun doily Valentine's Day banner. I know it's a bit early for Valentine's Day, but I didn't really want to decorate for January :)























I used Crate Paper, Paper Heart collection, purchased HERE. For the doilies, I bought a pack of 30 at Dollar Tree and sewed 3 together, to make them more sturdy. I used a lot of the chipboard elements and glossy accents to give the pieces a little shine.

For the "Be My Valentine" banner, I misted some white cardstock with colors of pink, red and white. Then I cut out the letters on my Silhouette SD,  using the free font, Blackout, (found via Lisa T.).


































I kinda stuck with a circles and squares concept to keep the design uniform. Crate's large amount of chipboard shapes, made it super easy. My favorite one is the conversation hearts + love letter. That was the first one I made :)

Have a great weekend!
XOXO,
Holly & Co. Pin It Now!

January 4, 2012

See Good Days

Yesterday, I had a bad day.
I was sad and disappointed.

We've been trying to concieve our second child the past several months and no luck yet. When I got pregnant with Zoe, it was unintentional and in my opinion, a series of small miracles. This is my first experience with the waiting game, and patience is not one of my virtues.

So yesterday, I pouted. I cried. I prayed. I ate ice cream. and then I went to town to get some final items for Zoe's good behavior chart.

While I was in town, I went into Deseret Bookstore. I wandered around and this book caught my eye.


I picked it up and held it while I wandered around the store. I debated putting it back several times, as it's not really a "need". But when I made it to the checkout stand, it was still in my hands and I bought it.

I came home, and read it cover to cover.

It was exactly what I needed. It was the perfect reminder that even though at times, life is hard and we can't change those circumstances, we can choose to see good days.

and today, and am choosing to see good days.

Along with this sweet book, last night I took a hot bath and got to use the brown sugar scrub that my sister in law, Jen gifted me for Christmas. Well after using half the container last night, I thought I had better figure out how to make somemore.

I did some searching and found this recipe. It was the least expensive ingredients and it has the same consistency as the one Jen gave me.

Brown Sugar Scrub

Ingredients:

1 cup Dark Brown Sugar
1/2 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil, can substitute Sweetened Almond Oil or Vegetable Oil
1 teaspoon Vitamin E (cut open Vitamin E liquid gel caps)
1 teaspoon Pure Vanilla Extract , optional (or your favorite citrus essential oil)
1 tablespoon honey, optional for dry skin

Directions

In a medium mixing bowl, combine oil, vitamin E and vanilla. Add the brown sugar and mix well. 
To Use: In the shower, apply Corrie’s Brown Sugar Body Scrub into skin and rinse.  Can be used daily.  
Original Source: Paula Deen


I wish I could gift this book to everyone I know. My hope with this post is just to remind us all to ...
See Good Days

XOXO,
Holly & Co.
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January 2, 2012

Old Friends


































This layout is not about old friends, but about getting old friends and family together. This picture was from "Pie-Fest" earlier this holiday season at my Great Aunt Meridee's house. We got to reconnect with my second cousins and Zoe spent the entire night playing with her third cousins.

Not too far off from that event, tonight, we had dinner with our dear friends, the Stauffers.
They missed us too much, and decided to move to Idaho to be near us :)
We are thrilled to have them so close again.

Their boys came over while they unpacked, Zoe was asking all morning, "Are they here yet?"
We had some dinner and dessert and let them get back home to bed and/or more unpacking.

I can't think of a better way to start off a new year.

Thanks to my sweet husband, my craft room is a disaster. And I don't mean that sarcastically. He build my Ikea Expedit bookshelf yesterday, so I have been busy organizing and sorting all my craft stuff to put back in it.

On my little blogging break, I was able to finish sewing Zoe's quilt for her bedroom and a new dress for her, which as soon as I can photograph, I'll be sharing on here, complete with the patterns :)

I also started on my Valentine's Day decor, but I think I will hold off on sharing that until we're a little closer.

XOXO,
Holly & Co. Pin It Now!

January 1, 2012

Hello 2012

Happy New Year.

Thank goodness blogging doesn't require talking, because I have lost my voice :)

At the beginning on 2011, I deemed it the year of change, and it sure lived up to it's name. We moved 4 times, I changed jobs and started working from home, Ryan enrolled in school full time, Zoe went to a new school and then to Daddy day care and back to her school, we lived with my parents for the summer, we almost changed Ryan's school, etc.

But besides the obvious stress all those changes bring, I would say 2011 was a good year.

I love looking back through all my photos and remembering all the fun things we did the past 12 months. I picked out some of my favorite pictures form the past year to share today.














We're planning on 2012 being a year of steady. I don't have my normal resolutions like I have in the past.
 I have a few things in mind that I want to improve on in our family, and I'm gonna working on that with steady, small steps. I want to approach it this way, so that those habits form and become second nature.

Thank you for your friendship, love and support this year! 
Wishing you a happy new year!

XOXO,
Holly & Co.


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