Tuesday, December 30, 2008

I love Mii

I must confess, the best Christmas present by far for us was the Wii. The boys were sooooo excited to get *their* new Wii even though (according to my mom who gave it to us) it was for the whole family. It didn't take long before it was promptly claimed by the boys, but only after after Hoyte and I showed our dominance in bowling! ahem. It has been so much fun, but by far the best time had to have been when we were making our Mii's.

I laughed so hard when we were creating these mini-versions of ourselves. And some of them were just dead-on, even if the the person it was supposed to be didn't agree! My favorite, though, was Carson's. It was so stinkin' cute and looked just like him. Apparently he thought so, too, because all we kept hearing from him everytime he appeared was "I just love Mii!" Seriously. We obviously have some work to do in humility. (But who wouldn't love that face? ;))

Monday, December 29, 2008

I hope you had yourself...

a Merry little Christmas and that Santa brought you all your heart desired. We had a really wonderful holiday - very low key but several gatherings with family and friends that were so relaxing and enjoyable. It's definately my favorite part of the holiday. Unfortunately I didn't get many pictures to share (I really enjoyed myself with everyone rather than being behind the camera so much - one of my 2009 resolutions ;)) but I did get this one...

I've taken a shot like this of Ethan since his very first Christmas (and even before since I took one of him under the Christmas tree when he came home from the hospital). I love how even though he gets older, the wonderous look on his face doesn't change. So very sweet. So sweet that I had a hard time with the fact that this beautiful boy turned 9 yesterday! NINE??!! Happy Happy Birthday to the most handsome, smart, fun, silly, crazy, wonderful nine-year-old boy I know. I love you, my Ethan!

And here's to a wonderful, safe, and healthy 2009! I look forward to sharing this next year with you!


Monday, December 22, 2008

Color Combos Galore!

Only 3 more days until Christmas (or 2 if you celebrate on Christmas Eve like us) - anyone else still not done and a little panic stricken? It's ok...panic loves company, so join me right here! Ha! But I am finding some time for work and a little fun thrown in and hope you are, too!

This week I'm the guest designer at Color Combos Galore. When Janet asked me some time ago, I couldn't say "no" because I'm all about color - the more color the better. And I love sharing my love of color so this was such a nice challenge for me. I picked two of my favorite colors - lime green and navy blue and after Janet worked her magic, we ended up with the following colors:

The exact colors are: Green Grape (RGB: 165,187,42), White Clay (RGB: 239,231,220), Cobalt Blue (RGB: 1,45,90) and Carrot Stick (RGB: 235,117,47).
LOVE them...they just make me happy!

The "rules" were that I had to use all the colors (and no other except perhaps minutely...hence the silver), and stay as true to the colors as possible. So here's my layout:

*sk8r* by Kelly Goree

I have to confess that Ethan wasn't thrilled I used pictures of him falling down but as I told him, it was all part of the day and his learning. I think he's ok with it now (lol) since there are cool stars and colors. ;) Anyhow, I hope you all will take a minute and play along at Color Combos Galore! Thanks to Janet for having me and I hope to see you there!


Sunday, December 21, 2008

He Cracks Me Up!

Seriously, it's like a three-ring circus around here most times, with each kiddo leading a ring. It can be utter chaos and so there comes a time (sometimes frequently) when the kids have to be in Time Out. Carson, my youngest at five, is the best about going to time out - he always has been. He'll go and sit and do his time and you hardly hear from him. So, um...sometimes we'll forget for a minute that he's there. (Yeah, I know!) So then we'll hear:

"Daddy? Mama? Can I get up?"

Well this happened just a few minutes ago. So C's Dad responds with a sassy "Sure! If you say I'm the greatest!"

(two second pause)

C: "I'm the GREATEST!"

and off he runs. Yep, that'll teach him.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Superdidooper Winner!

Oh yes, everyone! It's time to announce my superdidooper prize package WINNER!!! (Not to be confused with WINTER which is decending on us all too rapidly after a 50+ degree day yesterday! No wonder the kids keep cycling these colds! Ugh!)

HUGE congratulations and Merry Christmas to PHINNY!

Phinny said...
Oooooh - I can't WAIT to get my hands on the Bittersweet collection. Yum!

12/19/2008 7:12 PM

Hurry and send me your address to kelly.goree@gmail.com and I'll do my best to get your package out so that it arrives before Christmas! I hope it helps to make it extra Merry! :)

Thank you all so much for participating and following along with us this week. I hope that you'll continue to do so and say hi every now and again!


Friday, December 19, 2008

You better not Pout!

*********** CONTEST NOW CLOSED! THANK YOU! ******

Even though it's Day 5 of our BasicGrey & Hero Arts sketch week over on the Hero Blog and things are coming to a close! ;) Can you believe it is Friday already!? My boys are all out for the holidays and things are wild around here and there's still so much for me to do before next week. Anyone else??!!

Today, Jen McGuire from Hero Arts and I are back with one more sketch challenge. We are really having fun with all this and hope you are too. Today we picked Hero Arts Bold Caps Alphabet set and the BasicGrey Granola line. I hope they leave you feeling inspired.

Here's Jen's layout sketch for today:

And this is my page based on this awesome sketch. I decided to use the alpha stamps to create my own patterned paper, so I stamped, then embossed on the paper, then cut it to size! Very easy and gives such an impact!

Page by Kelly Goree
Supplies: BasicGrey Granola papers: Wholesome, Trailmix, Natural, Flax, Honey, Vanilla Bean, Gorp
BasicGrey Granola Chip Sticker ABC's
Hero Arts Clear Design Bold Caps Alpha
Other: Zig Pen, Clearsnap (Colorbox) Pigment Ink, Ranger Adirondack Embossing Powder, Bazzill CS

Jen has another awesome card sketch over on the Hero blog that she and the super-talented Shari Carroll did cards based on as well. Here's a taste of Jen's here! Isn't it adorable?! Granola is so perfect for masculine based projects! Run on over there and check them out!

I mentioned yesterday but it bears repeating since it's such good news - Hero Arts realized how crazy busy we are during the holidays so they extended their sketch challenge deadline to the 28th! YAY! More time to play! I hope that gives those of you that wanted to play the chance you need! You can check out all the details about that and see the start of our sketch week here!

And one last time - remember to leave me a comment about just about anything :) on any of my posts from this week (including this one!) by 11:59 PM Eastern Time and be entered to win my Superdidooper Prize pack (sneak peek shown in the post below!) I'm off to do more holiday things...yesterday's Gingerbread House was a bit of a disaster! ha!

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to you all!


Thursday, December 18, 2008

A Little Detour for the Holidays

We're taking a little detour for the holidays today rather than having a sketch and page to share as Jen and the Hero girls had a few prize winners to announce (yay!) and business to take care of. I promise we'll be back with tomorrow to wrap up our week in style!

Before we go any farther, you might not have seen yet that the awesome folks over at Hero Arts realized how crazy busy our lives are at the holidays and they wanted to give everyone more time to play with us, so they extended the sketch challenges until December 28th! BIG YAY! How awesome of them! So now you have no excuse! You can check out the beginning of our week here to see the very first sketch and learn about all the things you can participate in/sign up for to win goodies! AND while i'm at it, let me give a sneak peek into my "superdidooper" prize I was telling you about all week....
Tempt you yet?! This is only some of the goodies that are in that box. (Yes, that's an entire package of BasicGrey's Bittersweet you see there, too!) As I mentioned I keep finding more things to share, so I don't think you'll have to shop for months! Just remember to be entered to win this package, leave a comment telling me something (anything!) on one of the posts from this week (including this one). I'll leave comments open until 11:59 PM Eastern Time on Friday and will have a winner announced by Monday, so get those fingers typing!

More tomorrow and enjoy your day!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Day 3 with BasicGrey & Hero Arts!

Good morning, all, and welcome to day three of our Sketch Challenge Week with BasicGrey & Hero Arts. It's video day over at the Hero Blog and Jen has an awesome one lined up for you. (I really need to figure out how to do those!) Jen and I are having such fun with these sketches and I hope you are, too!

For today’s projects, Jen and I decided to both use Hero Arts' ClearDesign Birds and Branches, along with BasicGrey’s hip but country line, Urban Prairie.

And, Becky Fleck from PageMaps offered to make two exclusive sketches for us to use today. How awesome is that?! Thanks, Becky!

Let's start with the layout sketch:
Don't you love that bird up there?

And here is my page on flipping the sketch around horizontally. I changed the two photos to one (I'm on that kick lately for some reason!) and used the super fun tree stamp as the focus of my page. To give it a little extra punch, I colored in the leaves with colored pencils.

Hero Arts ClearDesign Birds and Branches
BasicGrey Urban Prairie Papers: Bluebird, Hayfield
BasicGrey Delilah Dark Chocolate Chip Alphas
Other: black ink, Uniball Pen (white), Pentel Pen (Black), Bazzill CS, Doodlebug Alpha stickers

Head over to Hero's Blog to see Becky's card sketch and more about this adorable card Jen did, including a video tutorial! There's even a bonus card done by Lisa Spangler that took my breath away. Such talent these ladies have! I'm totally saving my pennies to attend one of Jen's stamping retreats!

And while you're over there, be sure to get signed up to win this fabulous PageMaps book by Becky Fleck! F&W Media was kind enough to donate a copy for us and it's full of great sketches to get you creating… even for cardmaking. So hurry! This is a book you want to own - I have worn out mine!

Oh! And one more thing - make sure to leave a comment sometime this week to be entered to win my "superdidooper" prize. I'll be posting a peek at just SOME of it's contents tomorrow, but I keep finding more goodies to add, so don't miss out! :)

Have a happy day!

Day Two - Hero & BasicGrey!

Good morning, all, and welcome back to Day Two of Hero Arts & BasicGrey's Sketch week! So glad to have you here. I don't know about where you are, but where I am, I could sure use a distraction from this weather we're having! It's a snow day today and I have three little men underfoot and excited for Christmas!

So here we go! Today Jennifer McGuire and I both worked from sketches from Becky Fleck's amazing sketch site, PageMaps. Thank you so much, Becky, you know how much I love your sketches! I choose to do a layout and Jen picked a card (you're surprised, right? ;)) but we both used Hero's new 2009 release "Hello Circles" Clear Design Stamps and BasicGrey's Offbeat Papers! Be sure to check out Hero's Blog for more of their new release sneak peeks and some awesome giveaways and challenges they have going on this week!

Here's Becky's Layout sketch:

And now my layout based on her sketch:
As you can tell, I followed her sketch very closely on this one. That's my favorite thing about sketches. You can have all the guess work taken out of it and follow it to a "t" like I did or interpret to your heart's desire. Fantastic! I stamped directly onto my page as well as taking the stamps, stamping on papers, cutting them out and layering them with pop dots to get some dimension.

BasicGrey Offbeat PP's: Easy Going, Nonchalant, Lighthearted
BasicGrey Offbeat Element Stickers
Hero Arts Clear Design Hello Circles Set
Pentel Pen
Bazzill Cardstock
Delta (Rubber Stampede) Dye Ink
Clearsnap (Colorbox) Chalk Ink
Berol Prismacolor pencils

And here's the fun sketch Jen worked with from PageMaps:

And the stinkin' cute card she created from it....As always I'm in awe of the creative and ingenious ways she uses her stamps. Love this!

She's got more cute samples over on the Hero blog along with those giveaways I mentioned, so hurry on over there and check it out!

And remember, I have a huge prize/holiday box going out for one lucky gal this week so be sure to post on one these Hero/BG posts to be entered to win!

Happy Stamping,


Monday, December 15, 2008

It's BasicGrey & Hero Arts Sketch Week!!!

I told you it would be something big!

BasicGrey and Hero Arts have teamed up to bring you a week's worth of sketches and inspiration over on the Hero Blog (and here too, of course!)! Headed by the amazing Jennifer McGuire, the Hero girls and I have created some really fun projects all based on sketches! Sketches are such fantastic timesavers and creative block destroyers that I can't get enough of them! So glad to be working with Hero during this week! Add to it that we're all using the same products each day so you'll really get to see diverse ways to use them!

To kick off the fun, we are pairing BasicGrey's newest line Bittersweet with Hero Arts' Patterned Hearts, an adorable new stamp set for 2009 that they just sneaked today! So let's get started :)

I did a layout for our first joint project. There are couple of techniques I used that you might find fun to try. First I cut away a large circle from my main base page, then mounted another page under it. I liked the the depth it created which is quite a bit different than if I had just cut a circle and mounted it on top of my base. For the "conversation hearts" I used Hero's Patterned Hearts stamped with white pigment ink onto white cardstock. I then embossed them with clear embossing powder. When that was done, I rubbed various shades of chalk ink over them to get this fun "resist". I finished by cutting them out with decorative scissors and scattering about my page. And because I couldn't find a title I wanted that fit in the space I had, I created my own in Word and cut it out with a craft knife.
BasicGrey Bittersweet Papers: Almond Toffee , Vanilla Fudge, Essence, Blushing Pink
BasicGrey Bittersweet Element Stickers
BasicGrey Bittersweet Chip Sticker ABCs
Hero Arts Patterned Hearts

Bazzill CS
Colorbox (Clearsnap) Chalk ink
Versacolor (Tsukineko) White Pigment Ink
Ranger Clear Embossing Powder
Queen & Co. brad
Zig Brown journaling pen

Here's the sketch Hero created off my layout so that you can create something fun of your own:
Now hurry and head over to Hero's blog for a card sketch by Jen and several other Bittersweet/Hero projects! I understand there's some great challenges you can participate in to win some goodies! (Here's a little sneak of her project...Isn't her son soooo cute!?!)

But before you go, be sure to post a comment (about the holidays, your favorite sketch site, your favorite BG or Hero products - anything, really!) sometime this week and you'll be entered to win a HUMONGOUS holiday package filled with goodies from both companies (and many others!) And be sure to check back each day this week for more Hero Arts and BasicGrey!

Happy Monday, all!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

This Boy

Not only lost his first tooth today, but was the big winner (and by big I mean he stomped us ALL....hard!) in Monopoly last night. It was quite the weekend for him! The Tooth Fairy comes tonight. He's hoping for big money. Hmmm, perhaps, but not nearly as much as he got from me last night! ;)

Saturday, December 13, 2008

A Whole Bunch of Random

Oh boy am I not kidding. Random is par for the course this week, it seems. Let's bullet-point it, shall we?

*Last night was the bigs' Winter Festival at school. E wasn't into going, so I took Turner who was all about it. But he found the Moon Walks in the gym and didn't want to do anything else. He took his own money and bought a goodie bag from his teacher. Awwww.
*Caught wee-one's icky cold and spent from 8 or so pm last night until 10 am this morning in bed...and asleep. Whew.
*Feeling slightly better today but too lazy to do much of anything, so we all enjoyed a relaxing day at home building with Lincoln Logs.
*Tried to organize and clean a bit in anticipation for the holidays but not succeeding to well at that. But don't let it fool you that it's due to the sickness! ;)
*Because we haven't been out of the house all day and were low on groceries, I cooked breakfast for dinner and the boys were thrilled.
*Tonight is a Monopoly fest. I say I'll win, but Ethan usually does! :)
*Trying to gear up for CHA. There's alot of great stuff coming your way from BG and I'm excited to play with it some more.
*Still need to finish Christmas shopping (anyone else??!) of some odds and ends, then wrap them, bake goodies, decorate the Gingerbread House, etc...and trying not to feel overwhelmed about it. Succeeding only because I still feel icky.
*I'll have some fun stuff to share come Monday and a huge Christmas giveaway (I seriously mean a stuffeverythingyoucanintoonecostlargeuspsbox type of giveaway) at the end of the week so stay tuned.
*In the meantime, Scrapbook & Cards Today's Winter issue is out absolutetely a-may-zing. Seriously. And I'm not just saying that because I have the cover ;) Download it for free here and you'll see what I mean!
Have a wonderful weekend and stay healthy!


Wednesday, December 10, 2008

How do you Holiday?

As I haven't had time to look at (much less edit!) pictures from the parade though I promise they're coming, I figured I better find something else quickly to post about today. Since the holidays are weighing heavily on my mind, I thought I'd share that this month's BasicGrey Newsletter is all about "How do you holiday?" It features our new holiday line, Wassail, along with some awesome designers contributing to our sketch column this month - all with their own winter/holiday flair. I hope you'll take a minute to check it out and that it leaves you a bit inspired.

This layout is the one I did for the intro section and it's one of my favorites. It just evokes such a warm and happy feeling in my heart and is truly a holiday memory and tradition that I treasure.

I hope you are all feeling more organized than me, that you have your holiday shopping done and that Santa brings you your fondest wish.

OH! And p.s. I promise to be back with a vengence next week - It'll be good, I promise....AND there just might be a few things to fill your stocking as well. Just sayin'.


Monday, December 08, 2008

Even with the best intentions...

I've tried so hard this past month to be the good little blogger and at least post updates every other day or so, but darn if this holiday season isn't spinning my life out of control a bit lately! I'm trying to get a better grip on that but not having much luck. sigh.

Among other things keeping us busy this weekend was our town's annual Christmas Parade that the bigs were in. I have to admit, it was stinkin' cute. Where else can you get boys scouts (the bigs), tractors, a baby doll baby Jesus, the homecoming queen and Santa appearing on a firetruck all in one place? I kid you not, but that story is a post in and of itself. I'll "try" for that tomorrow. ;)

We also spent some time writing our letters to Santa. It's so amazing now that all the boys can write their own list. Santa may have to do some seriously crafty interpreting for some though. Just sayin'. This photo of them "thinking" completely cracks me up. Carson kept looking around, putting his pencil to his mouth going "Hmmmm...what else do I want?" Brother and Dad had to get in on the action a bit. Too funny, but what a Christmas memory.

I hope this weekend has been a good one for you and yours, too!

P.S. To my friend, Lindsay...SO glad to hear of the girls' safe arrival today. Happy Birthday to them and Happy Mother's Day to you. Congrats, sweetie!


Tuesday, December 02, 2008

The Busy Scrapper.

At the very first CHA I attended years ago (I won't even say how long!), I had the priviledge of meeting Courtney Walsh. Courtney and I had chatted online a few times and I was a huge fan of her and her work. After meeting her, I liked her even more. She's such a genuine, positive person and a pleasure to know. Over the years, we worked together on several projects, mostly through Memory Makers Magazine where she became a contributing editor. Working with Courtney was always a joy and a breeze, so when she asked me some 18 months ago to work with her on her latest book, I jumped at the chance. I was even more excited when I found out the topic was going to be about "busy scrappers" and how to find time to scrap when there was no time to be found.

Fast forward to well over a year later (it's been a long time coming, hasnt' it, Courtney?!), and The Busy Scrapper is now out and available for your purchase this holiday season. (I've linked you to the Amazon site, but it's available at local book stores as well). This book is a must have for you or any other busy scrapper or wanna-be scrapper you know. It's well written, has adorable graphics and if I do say so myself, some pretty kickin' layout samples! ;)And just to give you a quick feel for it, here's one of my favorite contributions to the book. This was Carson in the fall leaves last year. For this one, I used mostly cardstock as my base and then pulled elements out of my pictures to recreate as a design element. I even cut the leaves out of pieces of patterned paper so it was already done. Super quick for this one.

I hope you'll check out this awesome book for yourself. I think you'll love it. And to Ms. Courtney - congratulations, my friend! I'm so happy for you!

Monday, December 01, 2008

Purple Heart.

I don't often talk about my extended family much publically (mostly to protect their privacy) but I just have to break that a bit for today and tell my nephew, Pvt. Brent Carroll, how very proud I am of him. 

Brent went into the Army and completed basic training early in the spring and was almost immediately deployed overseas. I know some of you were there standing next to me at CHA Summer when I got the call that Brent was missing in action.  It seemed his unit had been attacked and not only were a number of men (boys, really) killed, quite a few went missing as well.  Brent was one of those.  He was recovered a day or so later (getting info from the military is like pulling teeth at times), physically ok, but mentally scarred. Even though Brent could have taken leave to come home for a while, he chose to stay in the combat situation. His particular job requires that he scout ahead of his unit for Taliban locations and then report back. On one of his recent missions, the Taliban opened fire on his scouting group and killed them all and seriously injured Brent. Brent returned fire and defeated the remaining Taliban.

For his extraordinary bravery and valor in the line of duty, on Veteran's Day, Pvt. Carroll was awarded The Purple Heart.

We love you and are so proud of you, Brent.