Sunday, April 19, 2015

Double Slider Card

Last week was my turn to teach a project to my stamp club. I got the idea from Stamps to Die For. She even has a great video tutorial.

Just pull the little tab and the secret panels will pull up to reveal a hidden message. Cute and surprisingly simple to make.

Tuesday, April 07, 2015

Another One Bites the Dust

I say that with the utmost respect. But my friend and old boss, who was snarky and sassy as hell, died last week. She'd want me to be sassy in paying respect or tribute to her.
I met Leigh in 1994 when we both worked at a stamp store in the mall during the Christmas season. She's always been a force of nature. Speaking her mind, standing up for what she believed in and jumping into something head first, flying fast. She had charisma, people automatically liked her the 1st time they met her, and learned early on not to cross her. It was very easy for me to be friends with her because she was straightforward, so I knew what her plans were and the direction she wanted to go. We were opposites, really, but we got along very well. She knew how to push me to motivate me, but knew when to stop. She understood that I have buckets of tolerance and patience, but if I'm right at the edge, to back off because I'll burst. She pushed me creatively, had a lot more faith in my abilities than I had in myself, and trusted me more than I thought I deserved. I was lucky that I was friends with her before I started working for her, because I never felt like I had to tiptoe around the boss. I could speak with her candidly.

Grand opening of her store, 1996.

In 1998 she had to close the store because her manufacturing company took off and she needed the space for warehouse and shipping.

Company photo, 2000.

Company photo, 2001.

After my mom died, she gave me a lot of leeway. She knew that I would need a lot of time to figure everything out and I needed to do it at my pace. She understood that I process things different than she does. But 9 months later, I was still trapped in my own headspace, and she bluntly but with kindness said: "ok madeline. it's time to come back to work." And I knew it wasn't because she needed me as an employee, but because it was just time to get out of my own head.

She had wanderlust more than anyone I knew. She used to tell me stories about growing up in New Zealand, her maori 'family', living and working on a kibbutz in Israel, working in the south, traveling through Europe. When she felt the desire to travel to Singapore and Bali, she asked me to go with her. I couldn't refuse.At a temple in Bali.

She bought that big yellow dragon kite above her for her son.

Another temple in Bali.

At a Hindu temple in Singapore.

After selling her business, she and her family moved to Florida because there were more programs available there for her kids. After they finished high school, she traveled a lot more. I would enjoy seeing her photos from all over the world. She was spending a lot of time in Israel again. Last month she was hiking through the sandy deserts in Jordan. The sand in the air as well as smoke from fires in Slovenia, aggravated her asthma enough for her to go to the ER. She started posting snarky photos from the hospital. Making fun of her bruises, joking around about being transferred to ICU. Showing photos of a dragon she bought for her son with an oxygen mask on, saying "uh oh, it's not looking very good". Unfortunately, it was a lot worse than anyone thought. Especially since she was still posting just hours before she passed away. And still being sassy...

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Spring In The City

It's easy to forget about how critical our water levels are when this whole month...winter actually...has been picture perfect.

On the 2nd Sunday of the month from March through October, San Francisco closes a street to traffic so pedestrians and bicyclists can enjoy a few miles without worry. There are random performances scattered through the blocks, but it's mostly a gathering of people enjoying the neighborhood.
Of course, this is San Francisco, so if you have a motorized unicorn to ride instead of a bicycle, the more you'll fit in.

And if you play bluegrass, you're welcome to join this group. Or just enjoy the music as you're strolling by.

If bluegrass isn't your thing, just a few blocks away, a group of young musicians were rockin' out.

A hundred years ago, the Pan Pacific World's Fair was in San Francisco, and all over the city, there are tributes to the event.

On another day, I enjoyed the blossoming trees at Union Square.

This heart of San Francisco is also proudly displayed at Union Square.

Bigger. higher. scary as hell. #cranephobia.

View from our front window. yikes.

Jimmy works in there.

And this is my view from the Habitat office courtyard.

Right at this moment, it's raining and windy, but the windows are open and the smell of the blooming trees and plants are wafting in. It's glorious. The rain is suppose to be minimal, but we'll take every drop.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

It's Not Gonna Happen Again This Year

Last February I didn't blog the whole month. I almost let that happen again this February, but it's the 11th hour, and I've decided to stop the no-blogging madness.

There's no way to stick to a theme for this post since I haven't blogged in a while. So here's a random mish-mash of February 2015...

We were in Southern California for a few days...
I finally got to meet my grand niece! She's 14 months old. My niece drove over an hour just to have lunch with me and my SIL. Also got to see the nephews for a brief moment. And spent an evening and the next morning with my BFF and her kiddos.

Jimmy had to work. He was recruiting at his alma mater. I went to college 15 minutes from here, at Cal Poly Pomona. So I spent a lot of time here, too.

We were staying in Pomona at the fairgrounds. Here's a pic I shared on Instagram for Throw Back Thursday the week we were there.
Jimmy was really into car races back then. We went to the Winter Nationals in 1988 at the fairgrounds. It's hard to tell, but we're posing in front of the Grand National, not the moving truck. It was Jimmy's favorite car back then. I used to love the Saab 900 Turbo. Random.

Also shared this gem from 1987...
Our 1st selfie before 'selfie' was a common term.

We were there Valentine's Weekend...
We treated ourselves to the best fish tacos in a little hole in the wall in Pomona. Two nights in a row. We lamented that Jimmy didn't like Mexican food in college. I remember hounding him for Mexican food all the time but his version of Mexican food didn't extend beyond Del Taco. Now it's probably our favorite style of grub.

Before leaving Southern California, we stopped at another favorite, Bob's Big Boy.

There's a whole hockey store down there that sells just goalie equipment. Not even regular hockey skater gear, just goalie! It's huge and Jimmy's version of my craft store. Couldn't resist a snapshot of these King-kong sized goalie pads.

Back home...
Jimmy actually went to work this way one day last week. The day before, he won a bottle of "Gorilla Snot Hair Gel" and was told to come into work with spiky hair the next day. One of their mottos is to "Be Unboring". Nailed it.

Apparently you're suppose to change the strings on your guitar every 3-6 months. Who knew?? The strings on my guitar were over 5 years old, but only used consistently for the last year or so. But they were due for a change. I was nervous changing them, but I did it all on my own. My guitar has never sounded better and motivates me to play even more.