Friday, October 31, 2008

Pumpkin Patch

Do not worry - I do have pictures of the actual pumpkin, TBSL. (To Be Scrapped Later) We had a good time, even though the boy-child was more than a little tired & cranky. Frankly, I'll be glad when the week is over and we all come down from the sugar high.

More Than Meets the Eye...

Check out this bad boy! I knew I wanted to do a Transformers pumpkin for Halloween, then time got away from me and before I knew it was Thursday and I had to carve the pumpkin now or it would be too late! So I hunkered down over the table for two and a half hours and created a masterpiece.

Okay... maybe not a masterpiece exactly. I had pitiful tools to work with, and the design was thin in places and had to be held together with pins. Still - I am quite proud of my efforts. :)

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

So There!

It's been a hectic week. Besides chasing after good test grades, I've been dealing with Halloween costumes, Halloween parties, laundry, cooking, and a zillion other things. In fact, I totally and completely forgot Parent-Teacher conferences were today! I will never forgive myself...

So I was stomping around the kitchen, and Jeff decides to do his I'm-an-idiot-so-why-won't-you-smile routine.

Spoken in a baby-coo voice: "Aw, baby, smile. You know it takes less muscles to smile than it does to frown!"

Without a pause, I responded, "Yes, but what if I want the exercise?"

Monday, October 27, 2008

Environmentally Conscious Eggnog

Wait... it's just two scrapbook pages, totally unrelated except for the colors - from Color Combos Galore:

Crunch Time

No, not sit-ups (though I should be doing those, too). Nah, I'm on a head-long race into the last six weeks of school. By some sick twist of fate, all three of my classes have generously arranged a test due on the Sunday after Thanksgiving. Since I do not want to spend my entire break with my nose stuck in the books, I'm going to have to pace myself to get the material done before the weekend.

I am also fast approaching the burnout stage. I had a big A&P test this weekend, and at least 25% of the material were questions we hadn't covered. Hate it when that happens. I spent my entire weekend studying the wrong stuff. Now I have to hunker down on Nutrition, and this is going to be a really hectic week, what with Halloween and all.

But I should say this - I am actually quite excited. Wednesday is Braeden's school trip to the Pumpkin Patch, and Friday I get to help out with the Halloween party at school, and then there's trick-or-treating, and then we have a party to go to. Busy, but fun. Mostly I'm excited about getting to see Braeden enjoy himself. He's going to have a ball.

I will leave you with a quick spread I did about Bebo's report card. He's doing just fine - we really only need to work on his handwriting skills. If he's anything like his daddy, his teachers may just have to settle for sloppy!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Musings on a Fall Morning

Have you felt the blessedness that is the cool, crisp fall air? Oh, it makes me happy and tingly all over! I love wearing fluffy sweatshirts and the way the house smells when you first crank up the heater and my nose turning red from the wind and the promise of the holidays...

Yeah, I know, I say it every year - but I love fall!!!

But... I'm drowning in a sea of bones and muscles - way more information than my brain is willing to compute at the moment. Stress levels are high. Thank goodness I always feel invigorated at this time of year, because I certainly need the extra energy.

Tomorrow I have my teeth cleaned (an experience I never anticipate with much excitement), there's a quiz on Friday, and Saturday will have to be spent studying, studying, studying. And cooking - I am really loving the weekend-cooking bit. It saves time and energy, because I only have to heat up the oven one time. I like that!

Jeff has applied for a job at Park Ridge as a nurse tech. Say a prayer that he gets something besides icky pizza delivery soon. We need the money!

Braeden is a pill, as usual. He's doing great in school. Currently he's in a phase where he's constantly asking, "What does ____ start with?" And he likes to spell, too - except his idea of spelling is to string random letters together - such as pxybmorlagekla - and insist that it spells train.

I am thinking we may need to take him to a speech therapist soon, though. No matter what I do, I can't convince him that "L" is not pronounced with the same sound as "W." It's almost as if he can't hear the difference. I'd hoped he would outgrow it when school started, but so far, no luck.

I am deep in Christmas preparations, too - trying to come up with ideas for spectacular-but-handmade gifts that I can 1) easily afford, and 2) people will actually like. Tricky.

And speaking of tricks, Bebo got an Optimus Prime out for trick-or-treating, and he is so proud of it. I do believe Thomas the Tank Engine is on his way out. The first thing we look at when we hit the toy aisle is now the Transformers section. He still passes by the trains, but only briefly. Kinda sad, actually. I will miss Thomas.

And now that I've bored you to tears with my rambling, I really must go. Enjoy your fall afternoon!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Color Combo #93

For the color challenge...

Play Happy

I should really be studying.... but I couldn't help myself. I had sketched out a layout design, but it just wasn't doing anything for me. So I tossed the paper to the side and ignored it. But this morning, when I saw the paper again, the paper was on its side, and I realized I had the layout all along. I just need to turn it over! So here 'tis, and with that, I am gone!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Onesie Card Freebie!

I really wish I could take credit for this idea, but I can't. All credit goes to Lauren Meader. I first saw it on 2peas, and here is a link to her blog. She's posted directions to do this with paper if you aren't digitally inclined. I asked her permission to post a digital template for those of us who prefer our crafting on the dark side. :)

The template has two cards, each on their own layer. You will need the ability to print a borderless 8.5x11, so if you can't, just delete one card and tip the other sideways. Enjoy - making this project is an absurd amount of fun!

Onesie Card .psd file

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


Did you look at the really cool site I linked to in yesterday's post? Really, check it out... good stuff. Anyhoo, one of the pictures totally inspired this layout - which was a ridiculous amount of fun to do. I'm actually thinking of framing it, if I can find the right size frame. It would fun to duplicate with paper, but I enjoyed the challenge of doing it digitally. And how cool is that quote?

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Eye Candy

No, really.... it's candy. Check out the loveliness (just don't go hungry!).

Eye Candy

Monday, October 13, 2008

Fall Break

Ah, fall.

Sort of.

I'm not sure 80+ degrees counts as fall weather, but the leaves are starting to turn (if only slightly), and the air has lost the sickening humidity. The calendar tells me it's fall, so despite what my thermometer says, I suppose it's truly fall.

Braeden is on fall break for the entire week, and Jeff & I technically have fall break today & tomorrow. I say "technically" because our teachers didn't get the memo. We still have tests, big assignments, and midterms to deal with. At any rate, I decided to at least pretend to take a break, so I've done a bit of scrapbooking. JES's fall festival was last week, so I did a page for Bebo's kindergarten book, plus I did one for the color blog (lemme tell ya, that one was agony - but I can't post here until Janet posts to her blog). Oh, and I did a hybrid card/gift bag for a baby shower present, too.

At this point, I need to abandon scrapping and move on to something more productive... like actually reading the material for the Psych test I have on Wednesday.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Facebook, Cooking, and Grades

I finally gave in... thanks to a pesky friend who kept poking me with Facebook stuff. I'd signed up ages ago, but the social networking thing just escapes me. Heck, I don't even like to carry a cell phone. (Jeff says that's because I'm antisocial. I prefer to think of it as Socially Reserved.) I'm still trying to figure out how to use the thing, but if you're on it and search for my name (Amanda Gates McCain), you can probably find me. Be my friend!

In other news, I've got a big day ahead of me. I have to work on my Nutrition test, and then (speaking of nutrition) I need to spend a few hours in the kitchen cooking up meals for the week. If you want some new dinnertime inspiration, check out my recipe blog. I'll be adding recipes for Aromatic Couscous & Veggies, Curried Coconut Chicken, Peanutty Noodles & Chicken, and Ranch Chicken & Rice.

And finally - I thought I'd give you an update for my online classes. I just totally aced my A&P lab midterm. My average in the class is somewhere around a 95. Psych is mostly a joke, because it's 100% open book open notes open computer. Heck, he even gives us links to sites to help us with the test! LOL And Nutrition... it's a little tougher, and a lot more frustrating, mostly because the course doesn't feel organized to me. At any rate, I'm still doing well, but I will admit that I will be happy with a B when the course is over. I think.

I told Jeff last night that I have never worked this hard for a class. Ever. Stuff has always come so easily to me. It's not that I am having trouble understanding, but there is So Much Stuff. For instance, I thought a skull was a skull. Nope. There are 22 bones in the skull, plus sutures and a zillion markings to remember. Eeek!

The good news is that I am really enjoying it, no matter how much work it is. I have long wanted to put my brain to good use again, and exercise the old neurons. And besides, I'm the quintessential dork - I just like school. I like to learn. It's fun, okay?

Thursday, October 9, 2008

In the News

Braeden has made his debut in the paper - and they didn't get his name right. I don't mean misspelling, which I fully expect to be a common occurrence. No, they didn't even get close. Heck, take a look for yourself:

Chad and Melissa? Um, no. Oh well - at least it makes for a good scrapbook page.

And I forgot - Braeden got his school pictures back. Oddly enough, they sent us a package and then asked us to pay for it. It seemed strange, because I could have easily scanned the photo, sent back the entire package, and gotten pictures for free. I was honest, though, and forked over the $40 bucks. I just wonder how much money they lose from scanner-savvy parents. At any rate, his expression is somewhat amusing. I get the feeling he had no idea what was going on, and then went into Big Boy Mode. He looks so much older than five in the picture!

Tonight is the school's Fall Festival - I think it's their fundraiser for the year. I wish I could be more involved, but it will have to wait until I'm out of school. I need to charge up the camera so I can get lots of pictures. I need material for Braeden's scrapbook!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

A book! A book!

Would you believe - I actually read a book! I didn't really have time to read a book, but once I start, I can't quit. Odd as it sounds, I probably set a record - it took me 3 days to finish it. Usually I finish a book in one sitting, but I just couldn't do that this time. Certain things override pleasure, such as study and sleep. ;)

Incidentally, I bought the book last weekend on my girl's day out. My hubby, who I abandoned to entertain the boy-child, decided to go all romantic on me, and when I returned home with the book in hand, he just stared at me and said, "No, you didn't." It took a second to realize that lying on the coffee table in front of me was another copy of the book he bought just to be sweet.

I read his book, instead of mine. :) I can return the copy I bought later.

In case you're wondering, the book is Brisingr. Not the best-written series I've ever read (can't touch Harry Potter or Sword of Truth), but considering the author was 15 when he wrote the first book, it's pretty good stuff. Perfectly enjoyable fantasy fiction - a nice break from the monotony of textbook studies.

Speaking of studies, I should quit rambling and get back to it. I'll leave you with a scrapbook page I did of my nephew, Branden. I don't see him much, and he is really growing up fast.

Color Combos Galore

Monday, October 6, 2008

Anatomically Correct

It's Monday... I survived the Week from Hades (year-end inventory + 2 tests). I even had a fairly relaxing weekend. My friend Elle & I hung out in Huntsville Saturday, and yesterday I even got a nap!

There's someone I'd like you to meet. This is Herman:

Herman arrived in my A&P lab kit, along with a brain and an eyeball. (I will be nice and not show those to you.) We've been working on the skeletal system this week, so I've had Herman fully assembled on my desk for a few days now. Braeden is fascinated by this 3-foot tall skeleton. He likes to point to parts and ask what they are. One day he pointed to the pubic bone, and said, "Dat's where the weiner is."

Not wanting to overdo it, but at the same time to give him at least a hint of an anatomy lesson, I replied, "You're right. That's where the boy's weiner is."

To which he responded with all the tone of a anatomical expert, "Yeah. Girls don't have weiners. They just have butts."

I'll leave you with a digi page of Braeden. Have a good week!

Friday, October 3, 2008


Our government has voted to give themselves even more power in the private sector, line their pockets a little more - and make us, Joe & Jane Taxpayer, pay for it.

Just watch... this will only be the first in a series of attempts to a bail out an economy that would heal itself if just left alone. Kinda makes me glad I'm too broke to feel the difference.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008


Thank goodness - the long, crazy, busy week is over! I had to stay up until almost midnight last night to wrap up the inventory postings for the company. Today I am seriously dragging, but at least I can breathe a little. My two tests are out of the way, so I can start focusing on midterms and memorizing the names of fifty zillion bones. (Okay, so really there are 206, but a lot of them have multiple parts that have to be learned, too.)

Anyway, it's Wednesday, which means a bit of a break for me. Braeden will go to Grannie & Peepop's after school, so I can choose from a) study time; or b) nap time.

Think I'll go with the latter.