Monday, August 31, 2015

Cocoa Daisy Sept Guest Designer


I’m the September guest designer at the Cocoa Daisy kit club, and I’m excited to show you a few projects that I created with the September main scrapbook kit “Daydream”!  I sat down on a Saturday night two weeks ago and was able to whip up two 12x12 layouts and three pages for my 6x8 summer fun album.  Today I’ll show you the first 12x12 page I created about Noodle’s birthday!


My cat Noodle recently turned five years old.  We celebrated him by giving him the trifecta of homemade whipped cream, some tuna, and licking a Cheeto!

Since it's a fun and light-hearted page, I decided to use the Pinkfresh Studio Geo Stripes patterned paper as a background.  I love the colorful circles, they look like confetti and add a whimsical and festive feel to the page.


The letter stickers from Simple Stories were really versatile to add my title.


I used a subtle patterned paper to mat my photo and I bent the paper slightly on top and bottom to create more dimension and draw the eye to the photo.


The entire sheet of Simple Stories patterned paper with all the cameras were perfect for cutting out and creating my own embellishment.



Some more letter stickers from the Simple Stories sticker sheet, and my journaling.


Hope you’ll check out the Cocoa Daisy monthly kit club.  It’s so fun to receive a happy crafty box every month!

I’ll be back with more project posts this week.  Thanks for stopping by! :-)

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Saturday, August 8, 2015

What I Cooked | July 2015

Cooking sort of took a backseat in July.  Both because I got sick of picking out new recipes, and also because it was hot and I didn’t feel like cooking as much.  Plus the summer daylight meant we spent more time after work going out.  But I did manage to try out three new recipes.  You can follow my “Stuff I Cooked” Pinterest board for all the new dishes that I cooked this year so far.

America’s Test Kitchen | Singapore Noodles

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I made this on 7/12/2015. I always thought Singapore Noodles would be hard to make, but it was fairly simple. Simple and delicious. Next time I would use less lime juice, it was slightly too sour.  The recipe is behind a firewall, so you’d have to register for free in order to see it.

Cooking Light | Summer Corn and Shrimp Succotash

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I made this on 7/14/2015 – I used a frozen green bean, corn, carrot, and fava bean mix. Halved the recipe so I used 3/4 lb shrimp. Turned out tasty!  The broth is made by stir frying the shrimp shells and then adding the chicken broth to it.  After you make the broth you discard the shrimp shells.  This made the broth super-flavorful!

Skinnytaste | White Bean Caprese Salad

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I made this on 7/27/2015 - I cut up some mozzarella cheese but they didn't turn out as pretty as the ones in her photo.  I also added roasted chicken to make it a meal. It was quite filling and delicious. For a no-cook meal, this was awesome.  Very easy for the summer!

So that’s what I cooked in July.  Lazy and easy, ha ha!

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Sunday, August 2, 2015

Thoughts on Sharing

At the end of 2014 I quietly stopped sharing most of my personal life on this blog.  It was definitely a conscious decision on my part.  Sharing my life so publicly on my blog and on other social media has become a squeamish and undesirable thing for me.  There were several reasons I felt this way. 

I am now a middle-aged woman.  I like living my life joyfully but mostly anonymously.  I started to feel like sharing on my blog and on social media actually took away from some personal experiences that I want to savor for myself.  I like enjoying the experiences with family and friends with just those people and not plaster them on the internet for strangers to look upon.  I felt like people commenting on my experiences took away from them, rather than added to them.  This is a very personal thing that has changed for me.  I did not feel this way when I first started blogging 10 years ago.  But in the last year I’ve definitely felt this way, so I wanted to test the waters of NOT sharing for myself to see how it feels.  So far I like it.

What a lot of people don’t understand about online sharing and blogging is:  You are only seeing a SNIPPET of someone’s life, not their full life at all.  People think that just because I shared a lot about eating out that I eat out all the time, when that couldn’t be further from the truth.  We cook at least five dinners every week at home.  I don’t scrapbook every dinner I make at home, because it’s just not that interesting.  It’s mundane most of the time.  But I used to blog about eating out a lot, because those were special occasions to me.  People drew the wrong conclusions.  That was just one example.

One downside of sharing so much less of my life on this blog in 2015 is I sort of miss the connection with people.  For some reason people do connect with me when I share about my personal life, even if they don’t see the rest of my life and sometimes draw the wrong conclusions.  I’ve made some good online and even real life friends through this blog.  I’m somewhat wistful that this is less likely to happen now.  But really, many of my favorite bloggers have stopped blogging.  I can see that blogging is becoming less and less of a thing now, and I am a part of it too, without planning to be. 

You are probably wondering, hmm, what about the memory-keeping aspect of your blog?  You used to say that most of your memories are kept on the blog, and only a few of them get scrapped, and that’s ok with you.  The answer is, I have been blogging my personal posts on a private blog this year, where only Todd and I can post and see the blog posts.  My life is still documented and I very much enjoy looking at my personal posts about the fun things I’ve done this year.  There’s actually been around 70 posts on my private blog that I started at the beginning of 2015.  When I scrapbook I still reference those posts and sometimes copy and paste the journaling.  I still love blogging as a form of memory-keeping.  Just not publicly.

It is the beginning of August now.  I don’t know how I’ll feel about blogging personal life blog posts here at going forward.  I sort of enjoy my setup for now.  However, while blogging some personal posts at my private blog this weekend, I came upon some fun experiences that I may share on this blog selectively, from time to time.  We shall see.

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