Archives for October 2012

Honey & Bunny


My layout highlights a photo of Phil and me on Halloween night in 1977. We were all ready to head out for some heavy-duty trick-or-treating.

Because I think it’s kind of funny, let me take a moment to list the elements that made up our costumes that night:

  • Phil’s female impersonator costume: An auburn wig (that we used for many costumes and dress-up sessions over the years); hoop earrings; blush and lipstick; my sweater and skirt; Phil’s sneakers
  • My bunny costume: My pink footie pajamas; construction paper ears; eyebrow-pencil whiskers and nose

I followed the October Club CK sketch, below, and am entering it in the challenge:
Club Creating Keepsakes October sketch challenge

Celtic warrior


I don't think Matt is quite right as a redhead. ;-)

For Halloween in 2005 Matt wanted to wear his kilt and be a Celtic warrior, so we pulled together this outfit. After doing a little online research for face tattoo designs, I “tattooed” Matt’s face. It was fun to do! Then we sprayed his hair with this outrageous color of orange to finish the look.

Admittedly, it’s a hodgepodge costume, but it’s fun and looks good on my guy. And he got a great reaction when he wore it to his business meetings that day!

Product/technique notes:
On this layout I used products from Echo Park, Little Yellow Bicycle, My Mind’s Eye, Paper Studio and Pink Paisley. I cut the title on my Silhouette using the Stonecross font.

One fall day


The colors in the Echo Park Fall Fever mini collection were perfect with this photo!

This is just one of those sweet photos Mom or Dad took of Phil and me on a random day in October 1971. I was a month from turning 5, and Phil was a few months from turning 4 years old. We’re posing in the living room of our childhood home in Willoughby, Ohio.

Product/technique notes:
I paired the photo with this Echo Park Fall Fever mini collection because the colors went so perfectly together. The background sheet is from Echo Park’s Take Note collection.

Baby’s first acorn


I created this layout to celebrate this natural beauty.

Our city had a “free tree” program this spring to increase shade in our drought-stricken desert climate, so we signed up to receive one. We planted this tiny oak in an open area of our back yard and watered it faithfully all summer.

The other day I watched a locust catapult itself from the grass into our little oak, so I ran over to check it out. When I got up close to see it, I found this adorable acorn. Just one on the whole tree. The locust is so many times larger than the acorn, and it was just so beautiful. I had to capture this lovely moment with nature and dedicate a layout to it.

Product/technique notes:
The majority of the patterns I used here are from Little Yellow Bicycle’s Acorn Hollow collection.

Trap-Neuter-Return gone awry

National Feral Cat Day 2012

Alley Cat Allies launched National Feral Cat Day® on their 10th anniversary in 2001 to raise awareness about feral cats, promote Trap-Neuter-Return and recognize the millions of compassionate Americans who care for them. Feral cats are domestic cats (like pet cats), but they have had little or no contact with humans, and so they are fearful of us and cannot be adopted. Their home is the outdoors. And there is a simple way to help them: Trap-Neuter-Return. This program ends reproduction, stabilizes feral cat populations and improves individual cats’ lives. The behaviors and stresses associated with mating—pregnancy, yowling and fighting—stop.

The basics of Trap-Neuter-Return (also called Trap-Neuter-Release) programs include:
Trap: Humanely trap all of the cats in a colony (a group of cats living outdoors together).
Neuter: Take the cats in their traps to a veterinarian or clinic to be neutered, vaccinated and eartipped (a universal symbol indicating they have been neutered).
Return: Return the cats to their original outdoor home.

I have written on my blog in the past about the fact that Matt and I participate in animal rescue in our area, and we believe in the good that TNR programs do for both the feral cats and the community in which they live. So, when the beautiful and spirited (read really aggressive) tomcat in my layout below “moved into” our back yard a few years ago and started scaring off most of the other animals we regularly saw and fed, we decided he needed to be TNRed. It was for his own welfare as well as that of the other animals.

We did it all: trapped him (which always makes me so nervous), took him for checkup/vaccinations/neutering and then after he had recovered, released him back into our yard. We actually quite liked having him around—just wanted him to be safer and less aggressive—so we hoped that he would stay in our area. All went as planned for Gandalf (named after Gandalf the Grey in Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings trilogy).

Until my brother, Phil, came for a visit from North Carolina shortly after we had gone through all this. Phil had been seriously considering rescuing/adopting a cat. But instead, in a surprising twist, he fell for Gandalf (who he renamed Willie (for Pittsburgh Pirates’ home-run hitting hall of famer, Willie Stargell)) and flew him home, thus ending Willie’s era as a feral cat! I called this layout “TNR gone awry” because Gandalf/Willie’s story did not end as we had expected; I think the actual ending is much sweeter.


Willie is Phil's homeboy.