Random Ramblings: April 2014

Monday, April 28, 2014


Since the SILHOUETTE AMERICA design team was chosen each of us members will be featured on thier blog.  Just for everyone to get a chance to meet us.  Many of the members have been featured already, and today was my turn.
So if you want to check it out and all of the other team members head on over to the SILHOUETTE AMERICA blog and take a look around.  



I just wanted to say hello and welcome to all the new and old visitors to my blog.  

Feel free to stay and take a look around.  I have all kinds of projects for you to take a look at.  I have been sharing my project life pages, crafty projects, recipes, cards and even some of my photography work.  
If you want to get notified with my posts you can sign up with your email address and get notified.  
If you are on bloglovin you can also follow me HERE and follow my blog HERE . 

Over to the top right sidebar of my blog you can find all the links of where you can find me, but you can Ill share them right here in this post too for you...

You can find all my PROJECT LIFE 2014 posts HERE .

and as soon as we start sharing SILHOUETTE AMERICA DESIGN TEAM PROJECTS I will have a page for all of those in one place too.  

Thank you for taking the time to stop by and look around.  
Don't hesitate to leave comments or ask any questions.  


Friday, April 25, 2014


Last May my step dad wanted to throw my mom a surprise party for her 60th birthday.  So he put me in charge of somethings and one of them was the invitations.  
I wanted something shiny and sparkly.
These came out exactly like I wanted and were super easy to make.
First I drew a rectangle in my SILHOUETTE STUDIO SOFTWARE and then drew the 60.  I placed the 60 on top of the rectangle and then welded them together.  So this way it would cut out on the black as one complete piece.  Then I cut the 60 out by it self from the gold glittery paper and glued them on top of the black 60.  I offset it a bit to give it a shadow effect.
I then cut down and piece of gold and centered that in the middle of the black rectangle.
I created the card info in my word program and printed that on vellum.
I cut the vellum down to size and only glued in on a small spot towards the top of the card.  I then tied a bow in some black ribbon and glued that down right on top of where I glued down the vellum.

( note : I did blur out some information that I didn't want to share over the internet in these photos )

They were easy and quick to make and I loved how they turned out.  


Thursday, April 24, 2014


I really need to kick my butt into high gear and get completely caught up on my project life pages.  :)

Today I am sharing week 6 with you.  

february 2 - february 8 

This is the entire week in an overview.  

The left side.

 The right side.  


SUNDAY : Me and the kids took Jacob out lunch today and just wondering around was this coyote.  The kids thought it was super cool. Today was also SUPERBOWL.  We didn't have anything planned for the day, but Jacob did bbq some burgers and hot dogs.  His mom and sister stopped by for a little bit.  I didn't even watch much of the game so I didn't even know who was playing or who won.  ( I had to google it for the page lol.  )

MONDAY : Dentist appointments for all 3 kiddos today.  The boys did great and had no cavities.  Chloe would not let anyone look in her mouth, she said she was scared.

TUESDAY : Chloe used her birthday gift cards at Target today and picked herself out a Doc Mcstuffin toy and a car for each of her brothers.  Today was also the birth of my brothers new baby Bria Rose.

WEDNESDAY : Today I worked on spray painting Chloe's easel.  We also made some homemade peppermint patties for the kids teachers on Valentine's Day.

THURSDAY : Chloe just all of the sudden can write her name.  She can look at it and just copy it.  We had no idea she could do this.  Such a smarty pants.  We got some rain today too.  Yay.. so needed.  I am also catching up on mounds of laundry today... I hate laundry.

FRIDAY : Today I had a maternity photo shoot in Barstow at the train station.  So I decided since we are WAY overdue I would get some family pictures of us too. Got a lot of great ones of the kids I am excited to get them hanging in frames around the house.

SATURDAY : Jacob wants to get his garage all cleaned up and organized.  So he got this peg board and today he is hanging in up in there.  It is going to look nice all organized out there.


Wednesday, April 23, 2014


Jacob and Caleb have folders for school that are filled with clear page protectors and they can practice on them with a dry erase marker.  I thought that was a pretty great idea.  Saves on so many wasted sheets of paper for the kids to practice on.
So the other day Chloe was playing with the blank photo book.  You know the kind that holds a bunch of 4x6 photos and you could carry it around in your purse if you wanted to.  It isn't huge and bulky but not super tiny either.  
My mom got the kids each one in a different color for Christmas to go along with their cameras.
They are still all empty.
So when she was playing with it, for some reason a brilliant idea came to my mind.
Why not make Chloe a little book to practice in too.  She LOVES to write on her dry erase board I made her with the markers.  With this, she could take it places with us too.. which she also loves to do.
So in photoshop I just created all these pages to look like it had notebook paper on it and then capital and lower case letters for her to trace.  
I found the tracing letters as a font HERE.  ( I think that is the one I downloaded - but if not just google tracing fonts and you will get a bunch of links )

I just went through and made a page for every letter of the alphabet, then numbers 0-9 and since there was still a page left over I did her name too.  
Then I printed them out on photo paper in a 4x6 size and just started filling the book.  
She LOVES this and calls it her homework.  
It is a perfect little activity to take in the car with us or just for her to sit at the table and work on.  She is getting really good with tracing the letters.  


Tuesday, April 15, 2014


One week at a time and I am getting all caught up on my PROJECT LIFE album.  Slowly but surely. 

january 26 - february 1 

Both sides of the entire week.  

Left side.

Right side.


SUNDAY : Me playing doll house with Chloe down on the floor.  She came to me and said, "Mommy, please please please don't tell me know when I ask you this.. but will you play doll house with me?"  Of course, and not just because she asked me like that which was too cute though. 

We also had a new recipe for dinner tonight.  I made stuffed manicotti.  It was really good. I made a few trays so that I could freeze a few for another night.  

MONDAY : Jacob bought me a new saw today.  I am so excited.  It will make all my wood projects so much easier. Girls can love power tools too. 

TUESDAY : Little Jacob up late tonight working on homework.  He isn't liking homework or school lately...
WEDNESDAY : Caleb's 100 days of school project.  Everyone in the class had to glue 100 of something to any kind of hat. I got him this beanie and we hot glued 100 Cherrios to it.  

THURSDAY : Target couponing today.  THIS is why I love couponing.  Digornio pizzas were buy 2 get a free bottle of soda.  They were on sale for $3.99 each pizza.  I had coupons for buy 1 pizza get 1 free.  Or something like that.  But in the end I got 12 pizzas and 6 bottles of soda for $32.00 plus paying with my Target red card gave me an additional 5% off.  

FRIDAY : Today we dropped this yellow sunshine basket off to Michelle, someone who we appreciate all her hard work.  Love doing this.  
Today was also free dress day at school with a sports theme, so the boys wore their Miami Dolphins jerseys.
This afternoon we had to take the KIA in for a routine oil change and the kids wanted their picture taken with the KIA hamsters. 

SATURDAY : Made a Home Depot run for some supplies. I have a project in mind !  


Monday, April 14, 2014


My neice is turning 2 soon.  They had her birthday party this past weekend.  They live in Sacramento, and it just didn't work out for us to go up to her party this year. 
But I was glad to be able to help by making her the MINNIE MOUSE BIRTHDAY BANNER that I recently shared.
I then was seeing all these buckets all over the internet and knew I just had to make something for her with a red bucket.
The kids and I found the red bucket at the Dollar Tree.
I hate when I go in there, because I find so much stuff I want to put vinyl on.
I think I have a serious problem lol.  
So I found this plain red bucket and the water bottle with a snack bowl underneath it.
I knew these could make a perfect little gift for any 2 year old.
I cut the black and white polka dots out of vinyl and her name and the minnie mouse heads.
The Minnie Mouse heads I used the trace feature on my SILHOUETTE CAMEO.  
The bow part was just empty inside showing the red of the bucket to look like Minnies bow.  
Then I cut some tiny white circles from vinyl and placed them on the bow part to look like it is a red and white polka dot bow.  I cut some of the tiny bows in half and just hand placed all the little circles inside the bow.  
I added her name and the big minnie head first, then just randomly added the bigger circles all around the rest of the bucket.
Then I added the ribbon to the handles and it was all finished.
It turned out better than I had imagined it would in my mind.  

While I was at the Dollar Tree I also picked up this water bottle for her with a snack bowl on the bottom.
I added her name to that and the word snacks to the bowl part, and the circles and that was super easy to do.  

Fun little things to add vinyl to and make them so personalized.
Now what can I vinyl next....


Sunday, April 13, 2014


Since I shared that Friday was mine and my husbands anniversary I thought today I would share the card that I made for him.  
I used my SILHOUETTE CAMEO for the entire thing.  
I cut the cirlcle background from a card file in my silhouette library.  
I used all white smooth cardstock from my Simon Says card kits.
I put a piece of dark red cardstock  and on top of that I laid down a piece of vellum, then glued the cirlces on top of that.
I centered that on my card.  
I put the vellum on becuase I didn't want the red behind the circles to be so bright and stand out, but I wanted something back there to add a little contrast from the white on white.  

 I cut the coordinating heart out of red, and the word always.  The word love I cut from some dark grey smooth cardstock.
I glued on the red heart and the words LOVE always.  

Then I covered my red heart in some glossy accents and let it dry completely.  

I love how the card came out and was excited to give it to my husband on Friday.  
I love making cards, I really don't know why I don't do it more often.  :)


Friday, April 11, 2014


I look back and sometimes it is hard to believe that it has been 5 years already, and yet sometimes it feels like it has been much longer.
Well we were together for 10 years before we did get married, so technically it has been much longer.  :)

It has been 15 years since Jacob and I met.  
It has been good, it has been bad, we have laughed, we have cried. 
 We have shared births of our babies and the loss of loved ones.
  We have moved, we have lived in apartments and houses. 
 We have had our share of vehicles, even shared buying a brand new car for the first time recently.
We have shared our lives with those around us that we love.  
We have hugged and we have kissed.  
We have learned things together and we have grown together. 
We have argued and we have made up.
We have gone on trips and vacations.  
We have made messes together and we have cooked and cleaned together. 
We have gardened together.
We have walked together and talked together. 
We have watched movies together and had lazy days together. 
We have played games together.
We have played with our kiddos together. 
We have gone shopping together 

But most importantly we have grown together and loved together.  
Jacob I love you for more reasons than I can even put into words.  We have been through a lot over the years and I just hope that we can continue to grow even more as the years go by. 

You are such a hard worker and without you working so hard I would not be able to stay home and raise our kiddos and spend time doing some of the things that I love doing.  You are supportive of me and all my crazy craftiness :)
more than you will ever even understand.  
Here is to many more years to come babe.

love, NICOLE

Saturday, April 5, 2014


I have to admit I don't really know what to call this thing lol.  I saw something similar and much smaller on pinterest and I was determined I was going to make my own for the wall in the living room.  Ever since Jacob suggested we add turquoise to the living room I have been all about adding it any way that I can.  
I took my favorite cheap wood to work with... fence boards. 
 I cut them each to 24 inches long.
I used straight edge boards on all except the board I wanted to be turquoise.  
I stained the boards with some paint and water mixture.  I used a bunch of combinations of browns and blacks for the dark ones and turquoise for the single board.
I stained them and let them dry over night.
I laid out the boards how I like them and nailed them to a smaller board across the back on both the top and bottom.
Then I already knew I wanted the dandelion but I wasn't sure on the saying, so I just googled dandelion sayings and found this one that I really liked.
I cut them all out with of course, my silhouette cameo.
( I will never get tired of talking about how much I LOVE this machine ).
I then attached the cut vinyl to my transfer paper and laid it out where I wanted it on the board.
I pressed really firmly and peeled away the vinyl backing very slowly.
After that I went over the entire vinyl area with my scrapper to make sure it was good and pressed in.
I coated the entire thing with a few coats of mod podge to make sure it was all set in and let that dry overnight.
I LOVE LOVE LOVE how it came out.  I knew exactly where it was going to be hung in our living room.  Since Jacob moved the tv to over the fireplace I have wanted something to go about the tv stand on that wall.  It is PERFECT right there.  I love it so much.  I know I made it but it makes me so happy to say I made that piece of art hanging on our wall.
I love the one board in turquoise, it just gives that pop of color that I love.

I have to admit I think this is one of my ALL TIME FAVORITE things I have ever made.  It makes me smile everytime I look at it hanging on our wall.  
It reminds me to not stress over everything and truly enjoy the journey of life.  Well it is something I am working on at least.  :)  


Friday, April 4, 2014


When my brother and sister in law had their first baby I threw them a small family baby shower when they came to visit at Christmas time. You can see that Ballerina Baby Shower HERE
So this past year when they came to visit I was going to throw them another one.  Well it didn't work out that they were going to be able to come at Christmas or anytime before the baby came, so I thought I would try to throw a shower together when they were going to come at Thanksgiving. Unfortunately  it didn't work out because it was such short notice.  Oh well, 2 weeks time is just not enough to coordinate with everyone and get a shower together.  BUMMER.
But I was able to create these shower invites when I did start planning.
I realized I never shared them so I thought I would still share them.  I was going to do the shower in a BEE theme.  I always see baby shower themes out there in the internet world and would love to throw a party in all the cute themes I see.  :)
I cut the honeycomb background on my silhouette and in a yellow paper I had on hand.
I wanted to do grey chevron with it, so I cut out some of the honeycomb shapes in the chevron pattern to fill in the negative space on a few random spots on the card.
I printed the "come celebrate the parents to BEE..." on my printer on some grey cardstock and cut them down to size and notched them with some scissors.  I of course had to tie a little twine on the end of that, just for some added fun.
Then I just took my little extra fine staedtler  ( I got mine at Target )  and drew a dotted line, like if it was the path of a bee.
Simple card but it sure would have been cute to send out.  Maybe next time.  :)


Thursday, April 3, 2014


I am so excited to be able to share this with the world now.
I have been asked to join the 2014/2015 Silhouette design team.
I am so honored and I am looking forward to working with these talented ladies.  

I want to thank my husband who encouraged me to apply for this.  I told him about it and said eh, I doubt Id even get picked though.  He then said to me why not try its worth a shot, you never know and what could it hurt.  Well he was so right.  He said exactly what I needed to hear and here I am today, as part of this amazing team.  

YAY!! I can't wait to start working on some projects.  
If you want to follow the silhouette blog where we will all be sharing our stuff you can find it HERE.  

HAPPY CREATING to all of you! 


Wednesday, April 2, 2014


I love lemon desserts! There is just something so summery like when you bite into a sweet treat and the lemony flavor takes over your tastebuds.  

I found this recipe HERE .
It was one of those by chance things that I ran across this recipe. It was a link I followed and then followed another link and so on just until I ended up finding it.  Lucky me and everyone who has had some of these cookies.  

These cookies are just that.  The perfect amount of lemon flavor to fill your mouth in each bite.  

These are such easy cookies to make too.
Here let me show you.  

1 8oz. tub of cool whip, thawed
1 box of lemon cake mix
1 egg - lightly beaten
powdered sugar 

Heat oven to 350 °
Mix the egg, cake mix and cool whip in a bowl. 
(the dough will be very sticky - it is suppose to be this way)
After completely mixed scoop a small tablespoon full and roll it into a ball.
Roll each ball in a bowl full of powdered sugar.
Place dough balls on a cookie sheet 2 inches apart.  
Bake for 8-10 minutes until the edges are a slight golden brown. 
Let them cool for 1 minute before placing them on a wire rack to cool completely.  

Serve warm or at room temperature.  We liked them both ways.  

Another special ingredient.. Make sure you have an adorably sweet 4 year old helping you bake these cookies. It makes them that much sweeter.  :)

Enjoy theses cookies, and make sure you make enough to share with everyone. 
I also was told you can make these same cookies using a chocolate cake mix too... OMG I have to try that next time. Then thinking about making chocolate ones got me to thinking about the endless possibilities of flavors you can make with this easy recipe.  I just got an orange cake mix, and OMG can you imagine with a red velvet cake mix.  Yep I think I need to make them in all the flavors I can think of.  :)


Tuesday, April 1, 2014


I know St. Patrick's Day was a few weeks ago, but I still wanted to share this project that Caleb and I worked on together as a school assignment he had.  

Caleb's 1st grade class has had several home projects that he has to work on and turn in on a certain day.  This month his project was to make a mini shoe box sized float in a St. Patrick's Day theme.  
Caleb and I discussed his float for a while until we got started on it.  We talked about some ideas we wanted to try for it, what he wanted, I made some suggestions and we came up with a general plan.  

We had the shoe box at home so we were good there.  
Then one day when I was at Target we picked up the green tissue paper for the grass area.  
We headed to the dollar store and found the salsa bowl which we used as the pot of gold.  We went there looking for gold coins , but instead they had green and he liked them so we went with the green.
I also found this window hanging that had all the shamrocks on it and the glittery Happy St. Patrick's day so we picked that up too, We figured we would see if we could use it in some way.  

When we started on the mini float first I showed Caleb how to put the cut up piece of tissue paper on the end of a pencil and dip it in some glue and put it down on the box.  Well he started out doing this, but it was taking FOREVER, so we started ripping chunks of the tissue paper and scrunching them up and gluing them down.  I started helping him with this part since it had been taking him days to do it the other way.  He was working on it a bit each night after his homework.
So we did the top and all 4 sides of the box.  I think we ended up liking this look better than our first original idea.  
 Next I cut out the shamrocks from the window hanging and the Happy St. Patricks Day saying.  We still weren't sure what we were going to do with these.  But knew we could figure out something easier if they were individual shapes and not one large square thing.  
Then I cut out the rainbow using my Silhouette Cameo .  I just sized it and then cut each color out with some patterned paper.  I glued it onto some chipboard and just trimmed around the edges to make it sturdy for the mini float.  
I also used my silhouette to cut out all the parts for the adorable mr Leprechaun too.  Caleb helped me with all those by loading and unloading the cutting mat for each cut we made.  He also helped me pick out which papers we would use for the rainbow and leprechaun.  
I did the same thing for the leprechaun that I did for the rainbow. I glued him onto some chipboard and cut around the edges to make him sturdy. 

After all our cuts were made and put together we went to work on the actual float itself.  
We first figured out where we wanted to put everything and then I got out my trusty hot glue gun to hold it all in place.  We didn't want anything to move since he was going to have to carry it to school.  

When we glued down the rainbow we then used cotton balls as the cloud on one side of the rainbow.  This was my idea and Caleb loved that idea.  :)
We had the other end of the rainbow coming from the pot of green gold.  We also hot glued every single green coin into the salsa bowl/pot of gold. 
We had the leprechaun holding onto the rainbow with a gold coin in his hand. We randomly placed the shamrocks around so it looked like he was standing in a field of shamrocks in a rainbow field.  The last thing we did was glue the Happy St. Patricks Day saying to the very front of the float.
All in all this I would say was a job well done.  I always have fun when I can help the kids make something crafty for school.  
On the Friday before St. Patricks Day was the day it was due.  (they were on Spring Break the week of St. Patrick's Day).  His teacher invited all the parents to come to class that morning so we could view all of the floats everyone made.  They all looked so good.  Some even had wheels like a real float would. What a great idea! 

Here he is in class that morning (It was also picture day and free dress day because of that, so no uniforms that day).  
Our handsome little guy was so proud of his float.