Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Beth and Carissa’s Luau Birthday Party

B&C_LuauInvite-front-webB&C_LuauInvite-back-web  credits: Paradise by Flergs at scrapbookgraphics; font: Baby Boston

Technically Beth and Carissa haven’t had their 12th birthday yet, but we have had their party. I decided to just get it done before school starts next month so we weren’t trying to cram it in among all of the new things for the school year. It was a bit of a challenge trying to find friends’ phone numbers and/or addresses that we didn’t have, but I think we were able to invite all but one person that they wanted to. Considering that a lot of people are still trying to get vacations in before school we had a very good turnout at the party. We had 20 children running around in our yard at one point! All week the weather had been cool and rainy, often with hail too in the afternoons, but July 23rd turned out to be a beautiful day thankfully.

There was a little bit of drama before and during the party due to some unexpected guests- big, fat bumblebees. I was putting the torches up on the terraces and Carissa was sweeping the patio around the table. A bee came out of nowhere and stung her on the chin. After stinging her, the bee went after Beth who was working on something across the yard. We finally got inside the house, and when I went back out about 10 minutes later the bee was still flying around and started coming after me. Dang aggressive little thing! I was finally able to whack it with a broom. While the girls were opening gifts in the middle of the party the adults were seated at the table, and out of the blue another bee flies up, lands on Mark’s nose and stings him. While he was in the house getting meds to keep his nose from swelling I started having a look around and finally figured out that they were coming from a hole in the siding of our house near the patio edge. After the gifts were all opened we moved the party to the front yard for the remaining time. Thankfully only family members were stung and no one had a horrible reaction to them. Bee killer seems to have taken care of the nest, and now we just need to get the hole sealed up so no other unfriendly insects try to take up residence.

Despite the bees, the party was a success. Food was demolished, cake devoured, lots of fun games, dancing and laughing. Definitely a good time! Happy Birthday, girls!

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Friday, July 16, 2010

Photos by Jen Ulasiewicz

You know, it really is a small world out there today. I have friends through the scrapbooking community on the WWW all around the world, from Australia, Europe and all across the US. When we first moved to CO Springs, the friends I made in this completely new place were ones I met when I posted on a scrapbooking forum and then later an email group for the state. Those ladies are still my friends today.

I first heard about Jen Ulasiewicz through a digital scrapbooking site a few years ago. She ended up moving to CO Springs as her husband is military and they were transferred to one of the bases here. Then, she joined Scrapbookgraphics as a designer a little while after I had joined the Crew. Even though we lived in the same city, we hadn’t met- that is until Jen saw a photo of me at the site and realized that she had been walking past me in the hall at TDC for months. Her daughter was taking a dance class with Ms. Cindy on Monday nights. I was usually absorbed in working on something or trying to get my girls fed during their break between classes and not really paying attention to all of the other parents walking by. Though they were in different classes, Amelia and Sarah were both in the ‘I Won’t Grow Up’ dance during recital, as  some of the classes with multiple times were combined.

Jen is also a professional photographer, Jen Ulasiewicz Photography (or go directly to her site here). Jen offered about a month ago to take some portraits of the kids for me and I jumped at the chance. I really like her portrait style. I hadn’t done the annual portraits of the kids yet, other than the ones I’ve taken myself. We chose Palmer Park as our shoot location. Jen had picked a place and shots to start, but then she just let them loose to climb and explore on their own. She followed them as they ran around and captured their unique personalities by watching how they interacted with each other and the environment. They all told me several times how much fun they had after we got home. Jen didn’t mind me taking a few photos with my own camera right next to her either. Here’s a peek at the results of the morning.

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and of course I had to scrap one of the photos I took- love these shots of them all spread out standing on the rocks.

credits: Good Times by The Studio Girls at Scrapbookgraphics, screw from Psycho Magnet by Flergs; fonts: TXT Abrasive

Thanks for the photos, Jen! My kids had a blast and are willing guinea pigs any time you need them ;)

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Monday, July 05, 2010

July 4th 2010 Festivities


All day Sarah had been asking when we were going to see the fireworks. We planned to go up to the Air Force Academy to enjoy the symphony and fireworks show, but as the time to leave got closer severe thunderstorm warnings dominated the news shows. The bad weather warnings didn’t stop the neighbors all around us from celebrating with displays of their own. We finally found some information that the fireworks show was still supposed to go on as planned, so we got in the van and drove north to the AFA. It had obviously rained hard before we got there, but we could hear the AFA band playing and people were patiently waiting for the fireworks still. We were able to enjoy about 20 minutes of music in front of the band shell, and then they began the fireworks display 15 minutes early because another storm cell was headed our way. The light rain didn’t dampen anyone’s patriotic spirit as the colorful explosions lit up the sky along with bolts of lightning. Once the show was done we walked back to our van as quickly as we could because the rain was increasing to a downpour. It was definitely a memorable July 4th celebration.

credits: Happy USA Album and Kit by Shabby Miss Jenn; font: LD Old Glory

Journaling: It was probably the most interesting fireworks show we had ever seen- mostly because we were standing in the rain and watching God contribute to the display with thunder and lightning that silhouetted the mountain skyline behind the Air Force Academy  athletic fields.
credits: Happy USA Album and Kit by Shabby Miss Jenn; fonts: Snowshoe

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