Archives for April 2015

Happy Mail time!!

bookgoodies1First let me say, I love Etsy. It is the best place to shop for many reasons.  But the big one for me is the people. Let me rewind a little. I enjoy watching Booktubers (people who share their love of books on YouTube).  I subscribe to several channels and have found some great references from them.  One of the BookTubers I watch  (Jo ReadsBooks) made an announcement that she was opening an Etsy store and I thought wow, I want to be her first customer. Because I know how cool it is when you get your first non-family or friend customer.  So I ordered this beautiful book bag and bookmark.


She shipped so fast, I thought she lived down the street. But the great thing about Etsy is the personal feel. Look she wrote me a little card.  So the entire experience is awesome and I have shopped with many Etsy shops and had amazing experiences.  I can’t stop smiling when I look at this book bag. I can fit two goodsized books and I also put my Kindle and phone in there when I go to pick up and they fit comfortably. Isn’t the bag so cute? Love it.

bookgoodies4I’m on an aqua phase right now so I had to have this bookmark. It adds a little feminine touch and makes me smile when I open the book. I love the idea.

bookgoodies2So if you find time do stop by Jo’s Etsy  shop it is called JosBookBaubles because I can tell you from experience, you won’t regret it.

Have a blessed day friends!



Project Life: Week twelve – My girlfriend weekend


Hello! I think my week off with the boys zapped my organizational skills because I thought I had already prepared this post before vacation and scheduled it for today. Only to find out that none of that was true. So I had to process this photos for this post and gather my thoughts to share. Here it goes…

week12aWeek twelve!! Well, this was a highly anticipated week because it included my 4-day girlfriend creative getaway.  As many of you may know, I go away once a year with the most talented and inspiring women I know. So this week, was extra happy because I was anticipating the fun to come.

week12bI took a picture of both boys the day I was leaving to share with my friends. Apollo did some kind of pose that looks like he might be dancing.  Nicholas took the time to show off his March Madness t-shirt he would be wearing later that day because he volunteered to help. Each year, I feel bad because March Madness always coincides with my girlfriend weekend so he doesn’t go. But this year, Leao took Apollo and Nicholas. They had great fun.

I included a funny picture of the “happy pills” my friend Kathryn left on my desk one morning. She gave them to all of us and inside was fun candy in the shape of pills. It was funny to see each of our reactions to the case on our craft tables.

Down the bottom was my daily selfie shot that I sent to Leao and the boys. I usually took them in my room or at my craft table so they could see me and what fun things I worked on.

week12cI tried to contain myself when it came to including too many photos and finally gave in to some inserts.  Another selfie, photos of the scenic view while Ashley drove and of course our favorite place to stop for  a sandwhich before finishing the last 40 minutes of our journey.  On the left, I found it fun that a journal Leao had given me that I brought to write in, coordinated with the linen on my bed and pillows.

week12dHad to include breakfast pictures. They are so yummy. I worked on some sunflowers that I had pre- cut on my Silhouette. Then I took a picture of this amazing baby blanket Cathy made for Ashley’s new baby girl. Cathy even made me a pretty knit hat. She is another one of my talented friends who pretty much can do it all, sewing, knitting, paper crafting. Such an inspiration.

week12eI had to include a packing organization picture since that is part  of the process the week prior to the trip. I included my organization of my watercolor and stencil supplies. Since I wanted to try out some watercoloring.  I also included a funny screenshot of a conversation I thought I was having with Ashley to coordinate what I was bringing. Only it turned out that I was texting Leao and even though he responded to tell me, somehow I missed this fact for a few more texts!! I almost wet my pants when I finally realized I was texting him instead of Ashley!  Another great thing is that only another crafter gets how much stuff you bring to a crop or weekend away.  So I included a photo of the final bag total before loading it into the car.

week12fI love that I can get the same room every year. I love the fireplace and layout of the room. I decided a picture of me relaxing in my room would be a great thing to reflect on when I get home so there you have it.  I focused on coloring with different mediums this time around so not just my Copics.  I had new watercolor paints and gave them a try. I also had watercolor pencils. Very fun.

week12gDown time is great because there are all sorts of conversations going on and always something to eat or drink available. I always think I am going to really eat too much but I think with the exception of breakfast, I do pretty good.

week12hOne night we had take out brought in for dinner and I had to snap a photo of all the food waiting for us. I had the most delicious salmon that night. Totally ordering that next year.  I’m drooling just thinking about it.

Well I will be back next Monday with week 13. Wow! We sure are cranking along here aren’t we?

Have a blessed day!


Earth Day in my Coloring world

earthday1Well Earth day and Arbor day sort of sneak up on me every year. I have grand thoughts on what I would like to do with they boys and then’s over and I feel bad.  But what I gently reminded myself this year, is that Earth and Arbor day are everyday.  And just because I may not do some grand gesture on those two days with the boys does not make me a bad person.

Because it’s more than two days and my commitment to my garden throughout the year as well as supporting the local wildlife (bees and birds) demonstrate my commitment to the earth. It’s not about a symbolic planting of a tree on the designated day (although that is a nice activity). It’s about our daily connection to the earth. That’s what matters and I know I have that and my boys witness my love for it regularly. That said, I did not plant a tree on Arbor day but I did color this lovely free printable of a quote from Dr. Seus’s Lorax. I used my distress markers for a change up and now I have a little poster to hang in my craft room.


So if you were feeling down about not doing an activity on the designated day…don’t.  Make it a new habit everyday to spend a little time in nature to find your true connection. It might be a flower garden, or a vegetable garden or maybe it’s just supporting wildlife (birds) with a feeder and starting a bird watching practice daily for a few minutes each day.

My boys always tease me because I put my good camera near the door and daily spend time watching my feeders and yard for bird interactions and new birds. If I’m lucky I see cool things and if it’s a special day, I actually capture it on film. But their teasing let’s me know they are aware of my connection and I hope one day, they too will find theirs.

Have a blessed Monday friends!


Belinda’s Book Nook Review: And We Stay by Jenny Hubbard


Title: And We Stay
Author: Jenny Hubbard
Copyright: January 28, 2014
Genre: fiction
Format: audiobook

Synopsis (from Goodreads):

Senior Paul Wagoner walks into his school with a stolen gun, he threatens his girlfriend, Emily Beam, and then takes his own life. Soon after, angry and guilt-ridden Emily is sent to a boarding school in Amherst, Massachusetts, where two quirky fellow students and the spirit of Emily Dickinson offer helping hands. But it is up to Emily Beam to heal her own damaged self, to find the good behind the bad, hope inside the despair, and springtime under the snow.

My thoughts:

No matter what book I am reading in print, I always have an audio book to play on my iPhone while I work or cook dinner. So I just looked through quickly and found this book. I never heard of it before by I think it is a young adult book.  I can’t lie, I was drawn to the fact that the main character was going to be going to a school in Amherst, Massachusetts and being a University of Massachusetts alumni, I love hearing about the area. So that helped when it came time to select this book. I also thought it would be a good book for me to check out since young suicides are prominent in the news over the years.

Bullying, rejection of young love, sexuality preferences, depression all these things seem to be top reasons that the youth of today are taking their precious lives. So I wanted to see where this book went with such a heavy topic.  The book slowly releases the reasons why and what led up to the suicide of the young boy, Paul while viewing the story through Emily’s perspective. It shared the aftermath and what happens to Emily. I could see the wholes in the “support” Emily received from her parents although I believe their intentions were well meaning.

I am saddened every time I hear a person particularly a young person taking their life. I wonder what brought them to the decision and always pray that we will find better ways to support each other so that no longer becomes an option. The story was interesting and I liked how, Emily, who was a young aspiring poet loved Emily Dickenson.  The author did a great job of weaving Emily Dickenson’s poetry into the story. I have to admit that I am not well versed on poetry but this book has peaked my interest.  I think this book did a good job exploring the aftermath of suicide and the struggles of the one’s left behind in a light enough manner that it wouldn’t overwhelm a young reader.

Overall, I felt although the topic is very complicated, I thought this was a good book and not the end all but one that might give insight to the guilt of the one’s left behind and how they grieve and process the loss.  I think the inclusion of Ms. Dickenson’s poetry improved my experience with the book. If not for it, I might have a lower rating but again I liked how the author utilized the poetry to help convey more meaning throughout the book.

That said, I would give this book four butterflies.

Happy reading!




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