Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Just a little something...

SO, yesterday my daughter took FOREVER (ok, like 2hrs) to actually go to sleep for her nap. Once she finally did, though, I finally decided what to do with the time. I'm hosting a craft night on Thursday, so I cleared off the dining room table. It had collected all manner of unfinished projects of mine & hers, crayons, coupon clipping stuff, etc.
At the bottom of it all was a project I'd almost forgotten about. I was frustrated that it wasn't working out the way I wanted it to, so I'd set it aside & it had involved using the exacto-knife. I'd let my hubby borrow that & haven't seen it since. Grr. So, I was about ready to scrap the whole thing.
I looked at it again once it was unearthed & thought... I could do this differently. I still needed the knife & I found another that was more of a skinny box-cutter than exacto, but it worked well enough. So, I sat down & with what remained of her roughly two-hour nap & finished the project.
I had found this Gandhi quote & decided I wanted something to hang up in the house to inspire me/us. I'd decided I wanted a nice nature picture to go with it & wanted one I'd taken. I eventually settled on a photo of the sky with some light fluffy clouds I'd taken. I printed letters in a font I liked on transparency paper. I was hoping for a fun layered look. The ink didn't dry on the transparency paper (must have printed on the wrong side)but that allowed me to use it as a stamp on the back of some scrapbook paper & use that as a guide to cut the letters out & then glue them in place on the transparency paper.
Well, that was tedious & frustrating & then some of the letters were coming off, Gandhi's name hadn't printed & that's when I set the whole thing aside.
When I found it again, I noticed that I'd been careful enough cutting the letters out of the scrapbook paper that it was still fairly readable. I figured, I'd cut the rest out & go with the negative space & totally scrap the transparency paper. I did that, stuck the pages together, cut down to size for the frame, used a sharpie to outline the letters & fill in the missing parts & then found this big die-cute flower my friend gave me & glued it on to fill up some of the space & voila!

So, if I do something like this again... not cutting letters out of anything!! I'll use my alphabet stickers, stencils or stamps!! You can't hardly even see my photo at all now, but oh well.

Monday, July 9, 2012

5th anniversary reflections

Saturday was our 5th wedding anniversary (7/7/07!) and May 23rd was the 5th anniversary of Dad's passing. I've been thinking about that time and what I expected to happen in five years at that time... and what has or hasn't happened. While we were planning the wedding, we were also planning to renew our vows at our five-year reunion. That's not happening... maybe at our ten-year, or even seven, given the date. ;)
We had hoped, originally, to have our wedding at Robert Allerton Park near Monticello, IL in the Sunken Garden. It's gorgeous... perfect... popular and EXPENSIVE! So, that didn't work out. We gave some thought to doing it for the vow renewal, but we're not much better off financially than we were to begin with, and we didn't plan for it, so ... yeah. Not happening. Our other thought, to save money & what-not... was to just flash-bomb the place! Maybe we could get everyone to make small donation as a gift & they wouldn't be too mad at us. ;)
Well, we found a deal to get reservations at the fancy Chateau next weekend with dinner & breakfast included. So, that's going to be our celebration.
I had wondered where we would be in five years. What kind of home? Before my dad passed away, we wondered if we'd be able to afford to buy a house after five years or not. We were able to buy just over one year after our wedding with my inheritance. Though, we had to take out a mortgage to pay the taxes on the inheritance!
We wondered if we'd have kids yet, one, two or three? Boy(s), girl(s) or a combination? Now, we're here & have a 2.5yr old daughter & another baby on the way! :)
What jobs would we have? Paul had just started as a temp worker through an agency at State Farm. I was working at Walgreens & Heartland Comm. College library & taking courses at Heartland. Our original plan was for Paul to work full time to support us while I worked part-time & took my courses to get my teaching certificate, then I would get a teaching job & support us while Paul went back to school to get his teaching certificate.
Well, after how long it took to settle my dad's estate, I'd lost my job at Walgreens. As time went on, I was not interested in dealing with all the red tape & parents that come along with teaching. I didn't know what to do. Paul got hired on directly at State Farm & discovered that it really was a good job w/benefits to have. I got a new position at the college working in disability support. I soon was working with their new program from adults with intellectual/developmental disabilities. I really loved it. We got pregnant with Amber.
After she came along, I went back to work, but was all out of sync with what was going on with the program after being gone for so long. With budget cuts all around, my boss decided my hours would be cut... knowing that meant I'd have to go because we already weren't breaking even with the child care. So, I became a stay-at-home mom. I started working very part time (just a few hours a week) for a friend of mine who's disabled & needs helpers. I also started babysitting Jamie this last year. Paul got a new position that was a great promotion, so we decided we could afford number two. Now, we're expecting again. :) My pregnancy symptoms made it too difficult for me to keep up with helping my friend & Jamie didn't need much babysitting over the summer.
So, that's where we are now. Not exactly what we expected, but still good. :)