Monday, October 3, 2016

October, here we go...


I'm making progress. Sorta. With my new computer. Except I've just about been in tears on several occasions, because my kids 'do something' and I can't figure out how to 'un-do' what they've done. They probably know more than I do at this point. But I'm fighting them on it all the same. 

I'm learning about 'finder' and folders. [Finder is your best friend on a mac, so it seems]

I'm googling so much stuff... Some of it makes sense, some of it doesn't.

Now we're officially into October.

I seem to be in a bit of state, as the harsh realization that my 'baby' is in her last year of elementary school. At the same time, my first born is in his last year of Junior High School.

What the.... Seriously. When and how did this happen?

Our first order of business for October, what to be for Halloween.

For the first time ever, Mad asked if she could go out trick or treating with friends. A total bummer that Halloween falls on a Monday night this year. Also, a total bummer for her Uncle, who has taken her out all these years. But when she asked, I said ABSOLUTELY! My only request, make plans known with friends ahead of time. Please let's not be figuring out the logistics of this, on the 31st.

Aside from the costume, and the candy grab itself, we have the yearly Halloween Hop to plan for. I think Mason might have done this for the first time in Grade 2... I kept this on the down low, because really, a dance... For elementary school kids? Come on. Grade 6 kids help in the concession, with all proceeds going towards their Grade 6 farewell. It seems unbelievable that my 2nd kid is going to be taking on a concession shift.

I also gave Mad free reign over the weekend, to decorate the house. Let's face it, pinterest makes all of us feel a little unworthy. Or is that just me? So, I just let her decorate. And she's done a pretty good job. In a few weeks, it'll all be packed back into boxes.

Pinterest makes me want to be super mom... I want to bake. I want to craft. I want to spookify our house. Knowing that this is our last year of elementary school, i know there are so many things that I'll probably have to 'un-pin' soon. Many things that she'll consider 'too childish'. But the days rush on, the weeks rush by, and gosh, it's really hard to fit everything I want to in.

This upcoming weekend is Thanksgiving. Plus, Mad's in a ringette tourney. We have ringette games as well as practices. Mason is in an exhibition game, as well as practices. Try to squeeze in some time with family in there.  We have turkey to eat for heaven's sake! It's going to be a busy weekend. It's hard to find the time to craft. To bake. To create. Sometimes, I just want my downtime to be sitting on the couch, under a cozy blanket, with a nice hot cuppa tea.

I always get so optimistic about the upcoming seasons, and then they seem to bulldoze me over like a freight train.

First on and most important on the list. Decide on a costume, and get that together.

Then make skull and cross bone ice cubes. Ice cubes go in lots of things. Especially adult bevies.

I'm all about the baby steps. And adult bevies.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Baby Steps Forward and 2016 Week in the Life

***Warning, this post is picture heavy.

I've made some progress. Tiny little baby steps. But for me, a huge victory.

I figured out how to get photos from my iPhone onto our Mac. Yay me... [I'm sure any and all Mac users out there are thinking.... Whaaaaat? It's sooooooo easy!] We have a convoluted history, and many different apple products, all under different user names. To a non-technical person [ME] it's terribly confusing. Mason keeps telling us, to MAKE AN APPOINTMENT AT APPLE for heaven's sake... FIX IT! I'm convinced that if we do go in, they'll confiscate all of our devices.  If we're lucky, maybe give us back an old fashioned flip phone, and tell us to give our heads a shake.

I'm sure I could have easily transferred photos by simply plugging my iPhone into my Mac.  But I have a secret. Shhhhh... Come close, I'll tell you what it is. Closer... I haven't updated my phone for months. MONTHS. It sends me a friendly reminder almost every day. Which I politely decline, by hitting the button that says Remind Me Later... And the poor phone does remind me. Daily. But I just keep ignoring it.

Now I've got myself into the position, where all the photos on my PC are no longer accessible, and I've got over 2500 photos on my phone. Yes, you read right, 2500 pictures, ON MY PHONE.

Perhaps, you can now understand my hesitation... I don't want to lose anything.  So of course, I'm apprehensive to plug my phone into the computer. What if, I plugged in my phone into the Mac and it forces me to update, and I lose all my photos. That would suck. Royally.

I finally had a few hours this afternoon, and started googling things. Then I got brave, and tried a few things. Then I actually used this Mac [that we've had since January] for something other than checking out pinterest... So, I've now got a bunch of photos downloaded, and at least feel like I'm one baby step closer to getting back on track.

I'm obviously going to need to download a new version of PSE, but I'm one its-bitsy step closer. I'm at least headed in the right direction.

I'm sharing the mini album I created for this years Week in the Life, back in May.

I think I mentioned, in a previous post, that this was the first time in many years that I had little desire to play along with a week in the life. My DSLR had been [and still is] acting up on me. I hated the idea of taking a bunch of photos and then losing them, or not being able to access them. So, for the first time ever, I played along with a week in the life, using nothing but my iPhone.

I have seen a few scrapbook gals using a simple 4x4 format. Specifically, I'd seen this one from Stephanie Bryan. It super simple. It's super easy. It was right up my alley.

I knew I would regret not documenting our week. I also knew I didn't want to go to a ton of work.

This is the end result. There is still the repetitive nature I love. Each day has two 4x4 sized photos, one at the beginning of the day, the other signifying the end of the day. Sandwiched between those are multiple 2x2 sized photos, in a 4x4 page protector. I have journaled a few sentences for each day, pertaining to the 2x2 photos. I did this during one of my 'sleepless nights'. That however, is a post for another time, sadly it happens on more occasions than I appreciate. I put the photo portion of this little album together between the hours of 1 and and 5 am, and sent it off to Costco to be printed. I'm glad I did that, or they too would be sitting on our PC.

I'm super happy with how it turned out. [On another sleepless night, I updated the kids school albums for grades 5 and 8. Sadly I didn't send them to Costco... Grrr...] #somadatmyself

Here is this years Week in the Life, short and sweet, and filled with a smattering of memories.

Years from now, I might look back and wish I'd included more 'tidbits'. That I'd been more informative. Journaled more. More this. More that. However, I did it. I played along. I took photos. I documented our week, in the simplest manner. I don't regret this format at all. In fact, maybe I've even taken away something from it...

Let's face it, a picture takes you right back...

Monday, September 19, 2016

PL2016 - Week 24

Well, we're still no closer to having the computer situation figured out, and to say that I'm beginning to freak out a little bit, is an understatement. This is the very last project life page I had put together, sent to Costco to be printed and saved on the computer.

Now as the days go by, I get further and further behind... Eeks.

I hate feeling further and further behind.

Here is Week 24, which goes back to the beginning of June. Back to when we had the entire summer looming before us.

Ride your bike to school day happened, Mad was thrilled to ride her bike to school. It also happened the same day as safety buddies, so we needed to be at school by 8:20. Miss Libby gets a wash in the puppy wash station. It's so darn convenient to bath her in a huge sink. She hates it, but I love it.
Weird cloud formations seemed to surround us for most of the summer. My first day of work... [Note to self, don't ever start a job again, at the beginning of June, when you have the whole summer looming in front of you...] It's a downer. Celebrating Ama's birthday with a high tea date. Mason at his last scout camp of the season. He loved using the potato gun.

Sahlin Studio Product Used:

Everyday Routine - Elements
Everyday Routine Journal Cards

Friday, September 9, 2016

Random Rambles and PL2016 Week 23

I'm not computer savvy. 

My computer is still dead. 

I may have quietly drank myself to the point of numbness, every single day, for the first week after said 'computer' went caput... [Is that even a word?]

Please don't judge... I did what I knew at the time... When I know better, I'll do better...

Then we were off camping for a week. No need for a computer in the woods. 

We came home smelling like campfire, and my sweetie quickly got into the role of Best Man, which lasted for what seemed, the entire long weekend.  Barry definitely had other fish to fry. Fixing a computer that he uses maybe 3 times a year, wasn't on his radar. The wedding was over and his duties, finally, came to an end.  

Kids then headed back to school, Grades 6 and 9 respectively. Once we had the first days of school under our belts, and the first ringette practice taken care of,  I casually mentioned, "Perhaps we could take steps to have someone look at our dead computer..." 

"Oh yeah...." was his response. 

I'm no longer drinking heavily. That stopped abruptly on September 6th. [Along with snacking...] One has to start off the school year with a level head you know. 

I've come to terms with the fact that I have lost stuff between January and August of 2016. Maybe I'll get it back. Maybe I won't. Thankfully, because Barry got me a new iPhone 6 for Christmas, I have all the pictures I've taken since our trip to Mexico back in April. So there are good things too. 

All of this wouldn't matter so much, but I love my photos. They are what I would grab from a burning building. Well, photos and my kids. Wait, photos, kids, photos, little dog, jewelry, passports, pictures on walls... You get my drift. 

Any way, I had uploaded a few weeks to the Lily Pad prior to computer failure. I then thought, maybe I can get those photos from that website onto my blog... And by George, I did it...

So without further adieu, here's week 23: 

This was the week of outdoor school. They were gone 2 full nights, and slept in Teepee's. Too say that Madelyn was excited would be an understatement. A quick group shot of the walking ladies. 10 out of 14 is a pretty good turnout. Madelyn painting a mug for her Dad for Father's Day. The little garden bed at the front of the house was beautiful with lilies/iris' this spring. Yet ANOTHER trip to the Vet with Miss Libby. A photo of us pulling our new tent trailer home. A family bike ride through fish creek park, on a day that couldn't have been nicer. 

So there you have it!!

All digital product used was from Sahlin Studio.

Reflections - Journal Cards and Elements as well as 3x4 Photo templates.   

Thursday, August 25, 2016

In Limbo

I'm currently in limbo.

My PC died. Literally died. I had just finished a few layouts, and suddenly the screen on the computer went wonky, and then the computer shut itself off...


I was sick to my stomach about it for 3 days. I still am, but those first three days, those were the worst. You may recall me talking about a new Mac computer we bought, back in January. We had supposedly 'migrated' all our stuff from the PC to the Mac, but as you might expect, there were problems. Do things ever run smoothly in the technical world?

The issues never got fully resolved. We never saw the final migration totally completed.

We saved all our data onto an external hard drive, so I have everything up until January. Supposedly.
[By the way, I'm using finger quotes when I say "supposedly"]

I'm not very computer literate. I get nervous about anything that doesn't go exactly the way it's supposed to. I suppose that goes back to all the years of calling the IT desk for help at work. I never dreamed of solving things myself. Always a nice young man came up and solved things for me...  So, I have the external hard drive, and 'supposedly' all the information on there. [Seriously, fingers crossed]

After a while, we had two computers to choose from. And I always chose the PC of course, it's what I know/knew. I still used PSE, which worked perfectly fine. Why worry about downloading that onto a new computer and learning the new ins and outs of PSE on a Mac? Plus, none of my photos came over during the migration, so even if I had the new program, how did I get to my pictures? It's becoming clear to me by the way, that at least one of my kids should get into 'computer stuff', so they can help their dear old Mum...

So, nothing changed, in how I used our PC computer. I continued on, quite merrily, doing what I've always done.

Sometime, the CD burner on the PC quit working. I'm going to say February-ish. Don't know why, but accessing the CD Burner was no longer an option. Did I just date myself there? By using the words CD Burner in a sentence? Again, that's what I had, and it's whats I knew/know. Please don't judge me.

However, I have all my photos burned onto CD's. Except the photos since Jan-Aug, because, I couldn't...

In the grand scheme of things... I have 10 years worth of photos burned onto CD's, so to say I don't have the last 7 months of photos backed up... Well, it sucks, but it's not the end of the world. Plus, I've kept up to date with printing off my project life photos, so I think I have up to week 24 printed off... But that's where it ends. Week 24 was back to the first week of June... So I have the paper copy of that, but not the digital copies...

The worst part, is I haven't printed off a digital copy of my regular scrapbook layouts since last summer. From 8x8 up to 12x12. It's too expensive in Canada to print them off [a 12x12 size runs $5.99 per page. Per. Page] So, I tend to save them up until I have a significant amount, and send them to be printed in the states. But there again, the Canadian dollar is just terrible right now. The last time I sent photos to be printed, I sent them to Persnickety, I was really displeased with what came back to me...  And I had to pay in US $$ to be disappointed. So I've been a bit gun shy about sending my stuff there, hence the reason I have over a years worth of layouts, that didn't get printed off... Eeks.

So, I'm hoping I can get those layouts back.

Speaking of layouts, I also do a school album for the the kids. I had just finished the pages for Mad's Gr 5 year and Mace's Gr 8 year also. But didn't send them to Costco... Bummer. If I'd at least done that, I could get to those photos... So those are stuck on the computer also.

Any way... I'm not the only person this has happened to. It just totally sucks.

My last complaint is, this isn't high on Barry's radar... To have someone come in and pay them, to restore stuff on our PC. If that's even possible. He has a work computer, so doesn't think twice about the inconvenience I'm experiencing. I have commitments too, so I'm desperate to the this sorted out.

Just like that, the sick to my stomach feeling is back... It didn't go away after all.

I'm hoping that this issue gets solved.

Until then, it's going to be quiet on this front. Can't even post a photo here...

Friday, August 12, 2016

PL2016 - Week 22

So, it's the 12th of August.

We're officially 6 weeks through summer. Kids are off for another 3 weeks. So many of the blogs and people I follow on IG are heading or have headed back to school. That seems so sad...

In June, when all those same bloggers and IG-ers are sharing teacher appreciation gifts, and showing themselves with last day of school photos, at the beach, enjoying their summer holidays, I feel envious. But at exactly this time of year, I feel glad. I am thankful we don't go back to school until September. September 6th to be exact. Whaaaa? How awesome is that?

Now having said that, this is also the time of year that I begin to bleve a lot quicker.  [FYI - the definition of bleve is this: boiling liquid expanding vapor explosion] By now, my kids have had about enough time together. All one needs to do is look at the other one, the 'wrong way', and a battle ensues. Or, they get silly together, and it's always fun, ALWAYS, until someone gets hurt. And in my experience, someone ALWAYS gets hurt...

This summer has been kind of different from summers past. First of all, I'm working... That's right, not a lot, but some. And kids are left home by themselves more. The person who it seems to be affecting the most, is Madelyn. I thought she'd be delighted to have a few hours to herself, that she can watch 'her' shows, play 'her' video games, since her big brother sleeps until noon when allowed to. But it turns out, she's having a harder time with it than I thought. I guess she doesn't like to be alone. 

We have gone on a few camping trips, and still have another one in the works. But we didn't do our annual vacation this year. I guess it just wasn't in the cards. Couldn't get dates that worked for us, and then there's that job again... [Note to self, don't start a new job in June. Wait until September.]

And, the weather has been absolute crap. I kid you not. The rain... We're all so tired of the rain. It started to rain the day after the Calgary Stampede started, July 9th, and has rained ever since. We have had a handful of rain free days. I wish I were exaggerating. July was the wettest month on record in 90 years. We broke records. For rainfall... Not fun. The Calgary Stampede was the wettest on record. Events needed to be cancelled because of the dangerous conditions, water and electricity do not play nicely together. 

Many of us looked hopefully towards August... Having high hopes for a month of awesome weather. Sadly, that too has been thwarted. It has rained and rained and rained. One severe thunderstorm after another. For this girl, who is ridiculously scared of lightning, I'm more laid back about it than ever before, which is likely because we've had electrical storms almost daily.  I'm getting numb to them. Last weekend we met friends at a nearby pub, and guess what popped up on nearly every TV in the place.... 

This did: 

A tornado warning... For Airdrie, which is 10-15 minutes from our house. My kids were home alone, so I was feeling extremely vulnerable and uncomfortable. The only thing that scares me more than lightning, is a tornado. Hell yeah, I have a emergency kit in place in our basement...

It was weird that night, outside... Weird colour. Weird stillness. Weird that someone even commented that it seemed like we could be in the 'eye of the storm', like the Day After Tomorrow. [Which is an epic movie, if you haven't watched it, you should] The clouds were so low, they seemed to hover just off the ground. We had  a great view from the pub window. It was eerie. Super eerie... I have to say that I was grateful to get home that night, and when we did, we were of course treated with an epic light show in the sky.

A few days ago, I heard that we'd already surpassed the amount of rainfall we usually get for August in general. However, I can't find anything to back that up.  But it certainly seems like it's true. Flooding of some sort, have been at the top of so many newscasts this summer, we're now numb to that too.

Any way... Enough about that crummy weather, I guess we can't have it all. Winter and spring were awesome. We're obviously making up for that now. 

Onto week 22 of my project life book:

This week, scouts went to Bowness Park and did canoeing and kayaking. We made several trips to the creek near our house. Libby loves it, but always gets to a certain point and wants up. Madelyn finally fell into the creek, in her quest to find frogs. We were actually in search of goats, a Calgary pilot project, but never found them. Mad had a girl guide wrap up, the season if officially over. We went and watched our nephew perform as part of the Ashley Hundred at the Market Collective. Madelyn was in her first ever fun swim meet. 

The following Sahlin Studio product was used: 

Paper Piercing Stitch Holes:
Totes adorbs – journal cards
Totes adrobs – kit

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

PL2016 - Week 21

Week 21... The week of sick Libby.

Pets. You become totally attached to them, only to get stressed out when they're not themselves. This week Libby dominated. We had her to the vet 3 times in 4 days. Not fun, especially when it makes you  realize how crazy about them you are... 

This week, aside from Libby's vet visits, Mason sent me a text that there had been a fire at his school. It turns out they were doing work in the mechanical room, and an electric panel caught fire. It never got out of control, but did set fire alarm off. The school was evacuated, fire department showed up, the whole thing was over before it began. But sending this text home to your Mum, priceless. Mad got a pass to Telus Spark, so we went one rainy afternoon. Had to get a shot of all the stuff Libby is on... It was ridiculous.

The following Sahlin Studio product was used:

Melon Sorbet - Elements
Melon Sorbet - Journal Cards