Wednesday, July 30, 2008


I do plan to bring a travel journal with me. I can't pack a lot of stuff so it will be very bare boned. It's quite possible that I'll be bringing just a backpack with me. Isn't that a scary thought? I pack way too much stuff just when I go to work for the day!

This week I checked out some beautiful photos of Denmark. Here are my flickr faves:

1. Copenhagen, 2. Gefion fountain at night, 3. New theather building, 4. Rosenborg Castle, crocus fowers, 5. Rosenborg - Copenhagen, 6. tivoli gardens_9, 7. Tivoli Gardens, 8. Egeskov Castle, 9. Spring., 10. Copenhagen view., 11. Carlsberg home base., 12. A new coating for the Round Tower #3., 13. The Tunnel on Brogårdsvej, 14. Castle - Castillo, 15. Lighthouse in Dune, 16. Fishing At Sunrise, 17. simply w, 18. Copenhagen University Library, 19. Lone tree by the sea, 20. Copenhagen - Nyhavn, 21. A stony coast, 22. hey hay!, 23. the colors of København, 24. and over the years it's slowly taken by the sea, 25. the black diamond.....

Monday was my full day of editing wedding photos. I'm trying to wrap that up so I can get those off to the Bride & Groom. Dan & I went to see the movie Step Brothers. It was entertaining and thats about it.

Jenna & I grabbed a ride from our Aunt Sandy & Uncle Harry over to Walnut Creek yesterday. We had lunch at a beautiful restaurant in Lafayette called Postino. My traveling mind of course jumped to the town Positano in Italy. YUM! It was decorated so beautifully I had to take a photo.

The outside eating area was just lovely too.

The five of us went to see Mamma Mia in downtown Walnut Creek. Its kinda funny when I go to a musical and forget that its a musical because they are speaking in some parts and then they break out into song. It was a cute uplifting movie with stunning shooting locations. Pierce Brosnan seemed to be miscast. That's all I'm going to say about that. Weird twist at the end. I probably shouldn't have seen it in the theater because I found myself laughing during parts that no one else was (except Jenna was quietly giggling). Oh well!

So today I am off to take some photos with my cousin Jeff in the Marin Headlands. Yes, I'm going back to get that harry potter tree/door thing to show you all since you all wanted to see it! Hopefully it won't be too windy. Happy Hump day!

Sunday, July 27, 2008

My quiet weekend

Kelly came over to scrap on Friday night. We watched more Sex & the City episodes while we goofed off.

Played one of my most favorite games this weekend. Jessica, Kelley, Jeff, came over to play with Jenna & I. We laughed so hard and played for 3 hours.

It was PJ night and we were all very tired so I didn't take a lot of photos.

Finally took some photos of two minis that I've had finished for quite some time. I went to Oregon with Dan & his mom's family back in 2005 for a family reunion. I had a lot of fun with paint and messy stuff while making it. You can see the full album here.

I took a great class with Kerry Lynn Yeary at Picture Me Perfect. This was the mini that she had us make. I changed it from a weekly book into my favorite photos that I took during January 2007. The rest of the album is here.

I watched the incredible movie Freedom Writers. It was so good, I watched it twice (two nights in a row). The message is so empowering. Go check it out! Oh I should warn that it is violent, but if I can handle it, so can you.

It hit me today that I have just a little over a month before I leave for my European trip (September 3rd). I went to REI on my lunch break today and was overwhelmed with all of the things that a traveler "needs."

Thanks for all of your wonderful comments. I really feel like I am so lucky to have found so many great people that share such a craft hobby. :D

Friday, July 25, 2008

Etsy update

So I'm updating my etsy shop with a few new albums in the next few days. You can find my favorite 6x12 album here.

Got the pictures back from the photo shoot. Here are a few more faves:

The sun came out on Wednesday so I went with Jenna and some friends to the beach for an hour. We got a little sun burnt. Oops! We were just so excited to see the sun. I went to the dark room and tried printing for a little while. It is so much more fun with my friends there. Every one is away on vacation.

Some fun movies I've been re-watching these past few weeks: Romancing the Stone, Look Whose Talking, Roman Holiday, Harry Potter & The Sorcerer's Stone. Some really fun summer movies! I am curious to see Mamma Mia too.

Hope everyone has a great weekend!

Monday, July 21, 2008

*Scrap Mojo 18* Seed Bank

My weekend was a little bit laid back in comparison to last weekend. It felt good to not have to be in three places in a day. I did work a lot and that had something to do with it. Our 12th anniversary party at the store went better than expected and it was great!

I finished editing some real estate agent portraits and spent a bit of time at Kristi's new digs with Sandy and crew. I always love seeing these girls and I was super excited to see Kristi's new scrap room. I didn't take any photos inside though. Dan was kind enough to take this photo of us:

Challenge #18 is up at Scrap Mojo. The lovely Kerry Lynn Yeary is our guest designer. The challenge is to ask someone what they would do with a million dollars. The second part is to use a pin or journal with a pen somewhere on the project. I have to admit this isn't my most favorite lo's but you have to work through it. I think the photos really have a lot to do with inspiring me. My mom in her garden.

I found a gift card that I got for Christmas and happily purchased this great cd (I partially blame Jill), as well as two widescreen dvds: Across the Universe & Edward Scissorhands. I was thrilled to find they arrived at my door today.

Let's see. The weather has been positively overcast for exactly a week now and its getting to me. I am looking forward to the nice weather in the East Bay on Tuesday. The positive thing about yucky weather is that I edit photos for a longer time period. I made some head way on my wedding photos while watching the third season of Sex and the City.

I also took a break to replace my edge distresser that's gone missing for 2+ months. I missed it terribly. Went shopping for good walking shoes for my trip. Didn't have much luck. Any brand suggestions?

Friday, July 18, 2008

Battery Townsley

Wednesday was a really cool experience. My friends Eric & Greg picked me up and we drove over the Golden Gate Bridge to Battery Townsley in the Marin headlands. It was such a cool place to explore. I discovered a door that went into a tree all Harry Potter style. I told my friends that it went underground but they didn't believe me. After further investigation, I found a small crawl space with a ladder that went down underground a few feet away. I can't wait to go back and take some photos of my own. Here is one that I had time to snap real fast.

Eric asked me to model for him a second time and we finally found a time when all three of us could get together. I should be receiving a CD with the photos in the mail in a week or so. I'll share more as they come. Here is one that I think is fun:

The lighting and textures were totally cool there. Now I just need a model to photograph. Anyone up for it? Let me know if you are available and able to come to San Francisco!

I visited my grandparents in Belmont for lunch with Jenna & Dominique on Tuesday. It had been a few months since I'd been to their house. We stopped by to say hi to Dan & Mom hard at work. Yesterday I worked to prepare for our 12th anniversary party at the store. Its going to be a fun celebration on Saturday! Trying to take it easy the after such a busy weekend/week. Hope you all have a great weekend! And thank you for all the wonderful comments. I always enjoy reading them.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

The Girl Effect

Was checking out Holly's blog today and was touched by this. I'd like to help in the best way I know how. Please take a few moments to view this:

You can learn more about the Girl Effect here.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Discovery Kingdom

Dan surprised me yesterday with a trip to Six Flags Discovery Kingdom. We had so much fun, I felt like such a little kid. The swing ride used to be my favorite back in the day. That was before I got into riding roller coasters. I still have a huge fear of heights, but I love the adrenaline rush I get from them.

Did you know you aren't supposed to take pictures on rides? Even if they are the little kid ones? I'll just add that to my list of places that I've gotten in trouble for photographing... If you take pictures lots, its bound to happen!

I channeled my grandfather for a short time while I was in the butterfly area. Great place to photograph them since they are all over the place. I remember one time my grandparents came back from a trip and they had a cocoon. I thought it was so cool.

I brought Jenna's little point & shoot canon elph 850IS. Love that it fits in my pocket but I really missed my super fast shutter. I got a little frustrated that it didn't capture what I was really trying to get. Made me appreciate what each camera is made specifically for.

Rode on 4 roller coasters and that was enough for me. Below is the Tony Hawk Big Spin. We also went on Medusa, Roar, and Kong. Medusa was my favorite. It might have been because it was the first one we went on that day.

I really tried to retrain my eyes on finding abstract photos as the park. I adored the colors of this elephant.

And my favorite part of the day was getting to take photo booth pictures. I have quite a collection of them from over the years. This is my first photo strip with Dan. The first two are overexposed because a little kid was playing with the curtain. Oh wells.

My second favorite part of the day was going to see the Bengal and white Bengal tigers. We didn't see the show but I did time it so the trainers were out and answering questions. I had to know when the big cats were born for a very important reason.

I was really lucky back in 2001. Gary, our family friend, had a friend that was a vet/trainer at Six Flags. For my 17th birthday he got me behind the scenes to meet and play with 3 cubs that were rather young. This was huge to me, since white Bengal tigers happen to be my favorite animal.

So here I was looking at two fully grown tigers that were each 7 years old. And they were cubs in 2001. It was really special for me to see them still there and lively. I didn't take pictures of them through the fence. Ok, sappiness over!

All in all, my day was wonderful. We ate lots of unhealthy food and it was just the perfect summer day. I love days like these.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Action packed

Happy Birthday Chez! Hope you had a fabulous birthday.

This morning I was pleasantly surprised to see that I was picked as one of the scrapjacked favorites! And to top that off, so was Chez, Dani, and Melissa. Congrats to you all!

I had a great day today. I was thanked for doing my job well and quickly. It felt great to be appreciated. And then I got to go scrapbook shopping because the Scrapbook Depot was having a sale on a day that they are normally closed. I didn't buy a much since I'm saving but it was still nice to stop in and check it out!

We met Kristi & some friends at Red Robin for dinner on Friday night. We had some great onion rings and caught up a little. I've been sad that Kristi moved (she went from living 15 minutes away to an hour away).

We goofed off a lot before we got this semi-normal picture of me, Kristi, Ethan, Ephraim, and Nick. Gotta love it!

Saturday was a crazy day, plain and simple. After I got off work, I drove to Livermore for Courtenay's Bridal shower. She is engaged to Dan's first cousin Kevin. I'm sad to say that I'll be missing the wedding, but its Europe! Here is an eagle eye shot:

Did you know that they make pinata's with strings that you pull? It guess its the more "lady like" way of doing it. You have to guess which string will cause it to break. I wouldn't have believed except that I witnessed the real thing! I had a fun time, but I arrived with it coming to an end.

I stayed late and played Scrabble with Dawn. Tim & Dan came over after the party and played another round of scrabble. I really need to get back into playing. They are so hard core! We hung out until 9pm and then drove back to the city for a little get together at Amy's beau's house. It was such a beautiful flat! I totally wanted to break out my camera and spend a few hours shooting their decor but it was not that kind of party where I felt okay to do that. But man, was it cool! I did take a shot of their stairs as we were leaving. Half the stairs had everyone's shoes (they had white carpeting).

We celebrated my cousin Dominique's 21st birthday with the family this afternoon. I can't believe she's going to be 21 on Wednesday! It was a pretty relaxing party. I didn't break out my camera until dessert, what an oddity!

Dom & her adorable boyfriend Kenny:

And that's it for the weekend. It's officially Monday for me. More pictures later!

Friday, July 11, 2008

Scrapjacked: CandiMandi

I jacked CandiMandi for the lastest scrapjack challenge and I love how it turned out. I adore this photo from my graduation and it really inspired me. I used the May Dozen's kit. Lisa suggested that I stamp the journaling with a type writer font. I dipped a gatorade cap in green paint and used it as a stamp. :D

I added the film rub ons, the yellow rose (from Aja), restroom lady, the journaling paper behind the labels etc...

I watched the first Season of Sex in the City while I worked on this. I am super slow at scrapping and get distracted easily. I didn't realize I'd seen all except one of the episodes. I've started on the second season, but just barely.

What else have I been up to? A lot of play and some work. The thing with editing photos is that it requires a lot of minute details and intense focus. And I can handle about 2 hours of that and then I need a break.

Jenna & Tiffany stole me from my computer on Tuesday to grab a sandwich and we ended up car dancing. I have so much fun with them. We grabbed an ICEE and went back to our cool house. I think it was 85 here on the coast.

That night, I drove Jenna, and friends to Mountain View. I had never played laser tag (yeah I know I missed that fad). This was everyone else's second or third time playing. I thought for sure that I'd place last, but I placed 15 out of 20! Here is my card to prove it (and Jenna named me Mc Mama but it got typed out as Big Mama).

Went to Taco Bell which is located on our beach at Linda Mar. It was so crowded I couldn't find a parking spot. I guess everyone was playing hooky. The cool thing about living so close to the beach is that I can walk from my house and go multiple times in a day. I went back later when it was cooler and walked Brewster.

Went out to dinner with Dan last night. Had a good time. Not much else going on. Just starting to realize how close I am to leaving for Europe. I am such a planner and its going to be interesting to see how I handle the spontaneity of this trip. Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

Oh, and those of you who were curious about that fireworks photo, I had a tripod set up and I was using (S) shutter mode at 1/8 of a second.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008


I've been on the fence about visiting Austria. I really love Swarovski crystals and there is an incredible museum there. It's so close to Germany that it really doesn't make sense to skip it. I am hoping to find time to stay there for 3 days or so. I'd love to visit longer but there are only so many days that I will be in Europe. So this week I searched and picked out these photos as some of my favorites from flickr:

1. Werfen, 2. Where Eagles Dare, 3. Votivkirche, 4. IMG_4315-2, 5. Linz/Donau, 6. Burg Gutenberg - Balzers, Liechtenstein, 7. Schaanwald (Liechtenstein) - Inside Train Station, 8. Karlskirche (St. Charles Church), Vienna, Austria, 9. Heiligenblut, 10. Austria 2006, 11. Großer Ahornboden bei Hinterriß, Österreich / Austria, 12. Wien (Austria) - Rathaus, 13. The bumping heart of Austria, 14. Hallstatt, Austria, 15. Viena - Austria, 16. Best of Austria, 17. Castle Liechtenstein - Austria, 18. Linz Austria - Kulturhauptstadt 2009, 19. Leoben (Austria), 20. Hallstatt - Salzkammergut Austria, 21. Salisburgo, Austria, 22. Tyrol Austria, 23. Tannheimertal, Austria, 24. Fontanella, Austria, 25. Day #3 - Seebensee [1657 m] / Austria.

That heat wave that I mentioned...OMG! This is not the weather we are used to for summer. We have what the locals call an Indian summer. The summer weather usually is in September. We've already had several heat waves (February, April, May). Considering that I am used to coastal weather of 60-65 degrees, its nice, but I really can't handle more than 2 days of it. We are lucky that its in the low 80's. I skipped Walnut Creek this week because its supposed to be 104 today.

Speaking of heat, I drove to Sacramento (Citrus Heights) to visit Sandy & puppy on Monday. I was so excited that I was going to see her that I woke up early. The drive took me two hours but it was worth it! I loved that she was finishing up a page when I arrived. She had a beautiful cardboard with lots of paint over it that she was working with.

Sandy was so much fun. She planned the whole day out for me. We went to lunch at this cute little restaurant that serves breakfast all day. Sweet! I'll eat breakfast anytime of the day. I ordered Banana Nut Pancakes and loved the yumminess.

Then Sandy drove me to Green Tangerines. I've heard so much about this store. It was the second reason that made me drive for two hours. Sandy has been raving about this store for a long time. We are both into organization and this store is all about that. I was completely overwhelmed but in a wonderful way.

I tried to be good about my purchases. I told myself I couldn't buy any more paper since I have loads of it but I found things I really "needed", especially for my travel journal for Europe. But, I did stay in my budget so I was happy.

We went to the biggest Jo-Ann's I'd ever seen before and they had a huge scrapbooking area in comparison to my store's measly 3 isle scrapbook section. My purchases can be seen above. We went to another store which was closed on Monday's (boo) and the other store went out of business recently.

We went back to Sandy's place and played with her puppy and I looked at all her scrap stuff. So much fun. Then Nick picked us up and drove us to Red Robin. Ok, I haven't mentioned how hot it was because we just didn't care to know. But Nick's car said 99 degrees at 6pm. ICK!

Nick & Sandy while we waited for our dinner:

On my drive home, my iPod started skipping a lot during one of my songs. I thought it might have been because the CD was scratched but then it did it with every song on the last hour of my drive home. The hard drive wont spin up anymore. I have loved it for almost four years now and its time to let go. :( I've been having bad luck with electronics this summer.

On a happier note, I found a lovely package from Vee. I won two RAKs in the same week! It felt like Christmas looking through all of the great stuff. I had to take two photos since there was so much. Thanks Vee, you are so incredibly sweet and generous.

I must get back to editing wedding photos and staying cool. Maybe even a little time to finish up a lo I've been working on.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Fourth of July Weekend

Lots to catch up on.

Jenny came to visit me on Tuesday. She brought me some scrap paper that she bought me a while ago. She found some cool stuff!

I stayed home for the tree guys to come and trim out Mexican Palms. They didn't come until Wednesday morning. YUCK! Wednesday Jenna & I played scrabble with our grandma in Walnut Creek. Went to the Elephant Bar with Dan for dinner. Hadn't been there in a while so it was quite the treat.

Thursday I ordered $20 of food at Taco Bell. My favorite part is when the employee asks if I want it for here or to go. This time I didn't get asked since I was laughing as I was ordering. I know this doesn't sound as funny as it is when you are there...

Rode with a car full of people (2 hours each way) to Pittsburg, California for a July 4th BBQ. Tei Wei cooked an incredible spread of food that could have fed 20 people instead of just 6! He made the most delicious potato salad that had beats and peas in it as well. I'm not a fan of beats but this was yummy and pink.

I decided the photos at the table would be more exciting with a duel (Zena & Robert).

Played the Wii after dinner. I swear that making the Mii is the best part. We bowled and I lost drastically. But that's how I roll. ;)

Went to the San Francisco Zoo with Dan's father's family on Saturday afternoon. Gabriella, Nathan, and Franchesco standing in front of the Penguins. There were a lot of changes since the incident with tiger. Higher fences and lots more glass.

Found this amazing RAK waiting for me when I got back home from the Zoo. I won it on Aja's blog. Thanks so much!

Lisa came over Saturday evening for fireworks at Dan's house. My parents joined in the festivities and we had so much fun. I took a neat-O photo of the fireworks. Just a different take on the cliche firework photos.

So its starting to heat up big time. The news keeps saying its going to get into the 100's by tomorrow. Should be interesting!

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