August 28, 2008

Theme Thursday: Round Up

Stacy suggested that for this weeks theme we show off some of our best/favourite images from the summer. Our trip to BC was amazing and the scenery made it really easy to take some fantastic shots. Here are just a few of my faves for you to check out:

The view from my best friend Rebecca's condo.

Heading to the top of the world (aka the peak of Whistler mountain) with the amazing Jessy on a crazy cloudy day - we were literally in the clouds!

It's so incredible that it doesn't even look real does it?

My awesome man.

One of my all time favourite shots. Can you see Mike?

A shot from the airplane window on our flight home.

Can you believe fall is just around the corner?

August 26, 2008

Shop Doors Now Open!

Gingham Skies is now officially open. Please be sure to stop by my Etsy shop to take a look around. See something you like but want one in a different fabric?! Feel free to email and I'll see what I can do!

Please let me know what you think of my new shop!

August 25, 2008

NEW SHOP: Gingham Skies

It's official: Gingham Skies is now open! Please take a look at my new biz and let me know what you think! There are just a few goodies in there to begin with but more will be added soon. Looking forward to hearing from you!

August 24, 2008

This is my favourite children's book.

It's the best book EVER. the end.

August 23, 2008

Turn it up for Todd Terje!

Turn up the volume on your computer if you want to hear some sweet sounds flowing from your speakers. I've resisted the urge to add a music widget to my blog for some time now because more often than not I'm totally annoyed when I find one on a blog (usually because my volume is up waaay too high and I end up being blasted off my chair thanks to some cheese oozing from my speakers) but I'm currently obsessed with the dj Todd Terje. This obsession stems from the mix you'll hear playing if you would just turn up the volume. It's a suh-weeet mix, really... trust me I've listened to it about a kazillion times in the last month and I'm still not sick of it. That being said, let me know when you're sick of hearing it and I'll throw something new on... maybe.

Speaking of music, the other day I was listening Mozart and wow that is one talented guy. I know that sounds absolutely ridiculous but I've never been a classical music sort of girl and I realize now that's because I had never really listened to it. Two thumbs up for Wolfgang!

Crazed Soccer Fan?!

Nope. Believe it or not this (not the greatest quality thanks to a shaky cell phone) photo was taken of Mike last night at a house warming party. His Ireland flag face was pretty friggen creepy in the dark.

Want to throw a kick ass party for your friends? Hire a professional face painter and a steel drum band for entertainment. Good times!

August 22, 2008

Flashback Friday

As if you don't ever feel like wearing a pair of tights on your head.

August 21, 2008

Stocking Up!

I am in love with office and craft supplies. I've probably mentioned this before because it's a slight problem I have. I can't go into Staples, Fabric Land, Michael's or Len's Mill without buying something, even if it's just a highlighter. Cara pointed out to me the other day that it's a good thing I like school supplies considering I'm going to be a teacher. She got me thinking, maybe my obsession with pretty pencils was a sign pointing me towards my future... too bad I didn't figure that out ten years ago.

Less than a week to go before my first day of school so of course I had to go shopping for new supplies. Binders and pens and highlighters! OH MY! Yes I'm a dork and no I don't care who knows it.

I certainly showed my age to all the little uni students in my university night classes when I yanked out the pencil case I bought in 1990 so I decided to update my 'look' by making myself a new one. I love the finished product and plan to make a matching laptop sleeve. Aside from loving the look I'm really pleased with the style and intend to make my Little Bits Bags using this template from here on in.

EEk! Just five more sleeps...

Pretty in Pink

I absolutely love this fabric! It's a Timeless Treasures print and since I seem to have such a difficult time capturing the colour in my photos here's the sample off the company website:

I made myself a pencil case/little bits bag for school with this and intend to make a matching laptop sleeve. I'll be creating an extra of each for the soon-to-be shop as well!

I think this Little Bits bag is the perfect size since it's small enough to stuff in your purse but big enough to hold lots of goodies. I've got a pile of school supplies in mine and there's still room to spare.

Measurements: 5" x 8.5"
From here on in I'll be making the little bits bag this size unless of course I have a special request.

August 20, 2008

Freshen Up Your Blog!

A loooooong while back I posted some tips on how to turn your blog from blah to... well, less blah.

I listed a couple sites that provide free patterns that you can use for your background and now I have found some more for you. Actually, to give credit where credit is due please pop on over to Specky boy to find the list of sites!

A Blackberry Bed

A tiny pouch I made for my blackberry lined with recycled satin, thanks Tanya for the pj's!

Mmmmm Blackberry

I keep *ahem* misplacing my Blackberry Curve's leather pouch. I really don't like it anyways because it's manly looking and the device has to be yanked out whenever I want to check my email or answer the phone. I decided to rectify the problem by making my own little case and I think the final result is pretty cute.

The Blackberry fits snug inside it's pouch which is lined with satin. The satin helps make a smooth entrance and exit: by simply squeezing the bottom of the pouch the Curve slides out of it's new home. I've used quilt batting to ensure there is some extra padding just in case it's dropped.

I'll definitely be making more of these puppies.

August 19, 2008

This is how I like to spend my weekend.

Spending my weekend with friends and family laughing, singing and dancing makes for one fabulous weekend.

Mike and our niece at our Fiesta this weekend. THANKS MOM & DAD!!

Joanne, Paul and the boys at the "August Birthdays" party on Sunday.

Of course laying in the yard with a good book and a cold glass of water makes for a lovely weekend too and after this busy weekend that's exactly what I hope to do on Saturday.

Thanks to Bird Bath for this week's "This is..." theme, it was an awesome weekend which made it easy for me to post.

August 18, 2008

Bliggity Blogs

While searching for laptop bag inspiration (I will be receiving my new laptop from my new school next Monday) I stumbled upon the blog Thimble, what a great find! Loads of neat arts and crafts tutorials and it's a Canadian site to boot!

Thimble led me to the Altered Cloth site which is also worth checking out, looks like there are some great projects there too!

I love the fact that one great blog usually leads you to a zillion others!

One More Week!

It seems like just yesterday that I received the fabulous news in my mailbox telling me I had been accepted to the teacher's college of my choice. Now the butterflies are fluttering madly in my belly because my first day is only one week away. Eek!

I have a few tasks to complete this week to ensure I'm ready for school and there's one you might be able to help me with. I have to fill out an information form and send it in to the school by Friday and I'm stumped on how to answer the question they are asking: list two things you want your professors to know about you. What the?! I don't have any learning disabilities and I have a feeling they don't want to know that my favourite drink is pink champagne... so what do I write?! What do you think they want to know? Thoughts?

Why Do Bad Things Happen to Good People?

Back in June I asked for your positive thoughts and prayers to be directed in my cousin Ben's nine year old son Benjamin's direction, he had a brain tumor and was having surgery to remove the tumor. I haven't posted about it since then because I just couldn't seem to wrap my head around the news, I still can't but it certainly isn't going to get any easier as time goes on: little Benjamin has been diagnosed with inoperable brain cancer. My mom expressed her feelings and the feelings of our entire family really well here. She's right, sometimes bad things happen to good people.

Benjamin's illness has brought out the good in an unbelievable number of people and we saw this on Friday night. We attended a benefit for Benjamin and it was truly unbelievable. There were loads of amazing items donated for the silent auction; hundreds of people were at the benefit spending money on drinks, food, t-shirts, raffles and more to show their support; the Harvey brothers who play for the Edmonton Oilers were there signing autographs... it was overwhelming.

My cousin Ben (Benjamin's father) got up and spoke to the room of appx. 500 and expressed his gratitude to everyone involved in this benefit and the other fundraisers that have taken place. It broke my heart to see him up there. Nobody should have to watch their child fight an impossible battle with such a horrific illness, it's not fair. Please continue to send positive energy in Benjamin's direction, pray that his time left here on earth is filled with more laughter and fun than tears and pain.

August 14, 2008

Suds for Slugs

I've had a problem with slugs in the garden and finally tried out the cup of beer trick; sure enough the poor buggers were lured by the aroma of hops. Next year I'll tuck my beer cups in the ground as soon as I plant.

Here's an update that will likely bore you but will be useful to me when I plant my veggie garden for the second time.

Lettuce: grew really well until mid-July. Next year I'll pull out out the plants and replace with fresh guys in mid-July. Butter crunch was by far our fav type: yummy tasting and grew quick and clean (upwards). Six heads of lettuce is all we need.

Peppers: growing well. Jalapenos are coming along best but the bell peppers look like they're doing pretty well too. Mmmmm

Peas: planted them super close together but didn't seem to matter, they grew really well. Three rows is plenty and they're best planted next to the fence where they were able to lean for support. Yum Yum!

Tomatoes: loads of tomatoes and they're delish! Four plants are enough. They have just started ripening in the last week but according to my neighbour and grandma I'm not alone. Guessing it's the ridiculous amount of rain we've had this summer that has delayed red from showing up.

Dave, our neighbour, tossed a carrot from his garden over the fence tonight and sold me on planting carrots next year. Mmmm so good. His beans are growing like crazy too but that means including a trellis for them to climb when building the garden next spring and something tells me I'm going to be swamped with school then... maybe the following year.

I know, I know you wish I would just keep on writing because this post has you itching for more. I promise I'll post something more interesting tomorrow.

August 13, 2008

Ripping with a Glass of Vino

I was hoping to post today with a picture of a new bag I had finally finished sewing but instead I am about to sit on the couch with a glass of wine and a stitch ripper. I love to sew but hate ripping out stitches; one thing I have learned since January when I first started playing with my machine is that a glass of wine eases the pain of ripping stitches. The bag is finished but the strap is almost two times wider than it should be. Oops.

Free Samples!

**LINK FIXED** Oops! I told you to click below but forgot to add the link; it should work for you now!

As mentioned in the post below Listerine is offering free samples of their Whitening quick dissolving teeth whitener strips to Canadian households, they'll also send you a coupon which will save you $8 off a box. Click here to visit the site!

August 12, 2008

Matchstick Spreads the Word

A few weeks ago a woman left a comment on my blog asking if I would be interested in testing a health/beauty product. I checked out Matchstick, the Canadian company she works for, online and then emailed her to find out more. The founder of Matchstick is brilliant if you ask me, it's basically a word of mouth marketing company - before I write any more I should let you know that I am not being paid or offered any other incentive to say this - they initiate consumer to consumer marketing by offering product trials to average Joes (Jaimes in my case). It's a simple idea that makes a whole lot of sense. I purchase new things based on the opinions expressed by friends, family, co-worker and other bloggers way more often than I do based off of a TV commercial or magazine advertisement.

Basically I spoke to the lovely Adrienne (a Matchstick employee) and answered a bunch of survey questions. Based on my answers she determined that I would be an appropriate candidate for the Whitening Listerine product trial. All I have to do is use Whitening Listerine quick dissolving strips twice a day for two weeks and let people know what I think. Matchstick mailed me a box of strips (boxed in a really cute tin as I'm sure you can see in the pic above) so it's costing me nothing to take part in this, they also sent me a pile of free trial strips to give out to friends. Finally I will be posting a link so that all of you can get your own free trials as soon as I receive the email with the link.

Here's what came in the tin Matchstick sent me

Now obviously I don't want to tell you how fabulous a product is if it sucks so Adrienne assured me that they did not expect me to tell anything other than the truth about my experience: if I hate the strips or feel they don't do what the box promises you'll be the first to know.

I've used a professional teeth whitening kit supplied by my dentist in the past, it worked but was a messy, gag inducing experience thanks to the tray I had to fill with bleach and wear on my teeth for a super long and nasty period of time; so far I like the Listerine strips better. I tried the strips for the first time tonight and aside from the initial blech chemically taste the experience wasn't so bad - you stick the strips on your teeth and let them dissolve: easy peasy. I have caps on my top teeth so I can only use the strips on the bottom, this works for me because my caps are whiter than my real guys so it will be really easy for me to tell how well the strips work: can my bottom teeth be as white as the top?! *insert suspenseful music here* Only time will tell. I'll be sure to let you know what I think.

August 11, 2008

This is... a work in progress.

My new business Gingham Skies is coming along slowly but surely.

August 8, 2008

Happy 1st Birthday to ME!

Jabbering Jaime turns one today! So much has happened in this last year that it feels as if it has been much longer than a year since I started blogging. It should be interesting to see what happens between now and Jabbering Jaime's second birthday...

Cheers to all of my readers; thanks for taking the time to read my ramblings.

August 7, 2008

Theme Thursday: Eyes

Being in BC means spending loads of time with two of my long distance loves who I think about every day and miss like crazy: Cara and Rosie.

This first shot was taken at the Feist concert earlier this week. It's a wee bit under-exposed but I still love it - Cara's eyes were the first thing I was drawn to when I viewed this pic after snapping it.

Of course Miss. Rosie, the happiest baby on earth, takes after her mommy in the 'perfect model department'. Check out those peepers: too cute!

Happy Birthday Paul!!

Happy Birthday Paul from Mike and I... and Angelina too! I'm sure you would have never guessed it (hope you're catching the thick sarcasm here) but Mike chose the shot of Angelina for your Happy Birthday post.

Use your own photos for fun at this cool site: PhotoFunia.

August 5, 2008

Standing on top of the world!

Our week in Whistler was amazing. Mike and I spent Saturday mountain biking and had an amazing time; Sunday we took the peak chair to the, you guessed it, peak of Whistler mountain. It was a beautiful day on Sunday so we managed to get some pretty spectacular shots.

Where's Waldo Mike in these two pics?

The background is so beautiful it almost looks fake, don't you think?

Off to see Feist with a pile of people at Deer Lake tonight, have to fly!

August 2, 2008

Heading to the Top of the World!

Jessy and I took the gondola to Garbonzo and then took the peak chair up to the top of Whistler Mountain on Wednesday. We were blown away by the fact that we were literally in, and above, clouds!

These shots are all from the top of the Gondola, we went even higher when we took the Peak chair but I'll post some of those pics later.

This shot here gives you a really good idea of what it was like approaching the top of the glacier; it was absolutely amazing!

Our final adventure this week was ziplining at Cougar Mountain with Jess and Colin. It was such a rush! Godzilla was the biggest line at 1500 feet long, 200 feet off the ground with a 200 foot vertical drop: WOW! Colin has video of the ziplining but we don't have any still photos... once the video is on youtube I'll pass along the link to you!

August 1, 2008

Now I Get It!!

I've bitten the bullet and decided to pay for 24 hours of internet access so that I can update everyone on our adventures in British Columbia. We're having the most amazing time!

Mike and I agree that this trip is definitely our second best vacation (first being our Mexico/Jamaica wedding/honeymoon trip) and we're just halfway through it. We arrived in Vancouver last Friday and spent the night with Rebecca; she has the most phenomenal view from her condo on Sunset Beach.

Saturday morning we drove two hours to Whistler Mountain where we had planned to spend five nights. The two and a half hours it took to drive to the mountain seemed like just a blink of an eye thanks to the phenomenal views!

Cara, Herwig and Rosie met up with us in Whistler just a few moments after we arrived in the village. The boys hit the Whistler Golf course where they played a round, drank some pints and enjoyed the scenery.

Cara, Rebecca, Rosie and I spent the afternoon catching up over drinks (milk for the baby, beer for the ladies) and then took a hike to Lost Lake where we snapped some pics, oohed and ahhed over the baby and yapped some more.

Sunday afternoon the fun continued...
I now understand my husband's obsession with mountain biking. Cara, Rebecca and I rented some bikes and gear and hit the trails and WOW was it fun!

I'm totally hooked on mountain biking. I had a blast zipping down the hill with Reebs and Neen, three runs were just enough to get me hooked!

Monday and Wednesday there are women's clinics offered for a crazy good price at Whistler so I attended both clinics on my own and loved every minute. The girls were super cool and the coaches were awesome. They split us into groups by riding ability and there was no pressure to ride any runs we weren't comfortable with or to move at any particular speed. Both nights I rode with the lower intermediate group because I was comfortable riding blue runs (green are the easiest). I learned some basic riding techniques on Monday; Wednesday our coach, Jim, taught us to jump. Hitting table top jumps was what he worked with us on - not jumping over anything so mom don't fret - I caught a little air on a few of the table tops after practicing over and over again so that was pretty cool!

So far I've ridden Easy Does It (green), part of Golden Triangle (blue), B-line (blue), a bit of Ho Chi Min (blue) which was my least fav due to the zillion rocks and roots, Crank-it-up (blue) which I loved and Heart of Darkness (blue) which is pretty intense thanks to the drop on the right but wow is it fun! Mike is pretty stoked that I liked riding, we're going to bike together tomorrow! Yay!

Jessy, Colin, Ian and Jackie all arrived on Sunday afternoon. Rebecca headed back to Vancouver after riding but Cara and Herwig stuck around for another night. Remember I said we had planned a five night stay in Whistler? Well it has turned into eight nights thanks to a crazy rock slide that has blocked the only highway from Whistler to Vancouver. Thankfully our hotel has offered us a fabulous price for additional nights while the road is blocked. We've got it made at the Mountainside Lodge and would definitely stay here again in the future, we're right at the base of the mountain in the village. Check out the view from our room.

Monday the girls all went kayaking while the boys rode and others (Herwig - such a good man) took care of Rosie.

We had such a good laugh, particularly when Jessy flipped her kayak landing in the freezing cold creek next to a beach where three strangers were sitting, thankfully they were kind and helped us to right jess' kayak before they laughed at the situation. Hilarious!

We've been up to much more since Monday but I think this is a long enough post for today. I'll tell you about some of our other adventures tomorrow. It really has been a fabulous week!