Friday, December 9, 2011

merry thanksgivoween

Did you know time was speeding up?  Well, it is.  Here's a re-cap of the Halls' important bits:

 Slight obsession with Nightmare Before Christmas here.

 Dessicated jack-o-lanterns, one day after carving (darn Santa Ana winds).

Batterina and the Pumpkin Patch.

Pioneer Woman's turkey brine - it doesn't smell like the holidays until it's going.

Tom looked gorgeous, until we noticed the pink juices - wtf?

Christmas on the Prado, Balboa Park - the annual start to our festivities.

The Christmas train (another obsession) - choo choo!

Our caroling Peanuts gang broke this year - whaaaa!

Yes, the presents are wrapped and ready.  What can I say?

Christmas in San Diego - fake snow back-drop and short sleeves.

With love, from us to you!
Tha Halls

Sunday, October 30, 2011

hallowe'en treats

Happy Hallowe'en - my favorite time of year!  Looking back on the past twelve months it's crazy to realize we've moved TWICE, had twins, and nursed them both to seven months old.  But this year there's still just one kiddo to treat, so here's my creation:

I wanted a simple treat with an attached note.  I like the 'headstone' look of Favor It Box 3 with the Moroccan Motifs impression plate, and *surprise* the Lunchbox Note fit just-so into the Library Pocket with only slight trimming!

To fit the sentiment, I curved the Halloween stamp.

I also had to use my ticket die, so I decided to go with 'creepy carnivale'...

I masked the sentiments and stamped double images from various sets, adding a little Copic marker here and there.  I'm quite happy with how it turned out (and I know of a certain girl who'll be happy too!).

Hope you enjoy your spooky day!

stamps - PTI Been Boo'd, Tiny Treats: Halloween, Just the Ticket, Friendship Jar Fall Fillers, 2009 Halloween Tags
ink - PTI smokey shadow, true black; Versamagic Eggplant
paper - PTI royal velvet, true black, smokey shadow, soft stone
accents - PTI spring moss felt, simply chartreuse swiss dot ribbon
dies - PTI Favor It Box 3, Limitless Layers 1 3/4" Circle Collection, Lunchbox Note, Library Pocket, Ticket Border, Rickrack Border
tools - 1 3/4" circle punch, Copics V91/Y32/T4/T1/0

Sunday, July 31, 2011

100th post - ppd blog hop

This is my 100th blog post (yay!).  There's no better way to celebrate than hopping with the PTI Paper Dolls for our crafty Idol, Laurie Beth!!  Congrats on making it as far as the top ten!!  Now, Laurie is one hard girl to CASE - every change looks wrong since her designs are perfect to begin with! :)  Since I wanted to try out an uninked set, Botanical Sillhouettes, I picked this card here.  So then my card for Laurie:

I love Laurie's Mat Stack 3 window but I don't have that die.  I tried Mat Stack 4 & 6, but they were both too big.  Fillable Frame 8 had a lovely shape but was small for the space so I added the stamped frame.  I struggle with CAS - all that empty space made me just run for my woodgrain impression plate. :)  

Laurie, you are one talented gal!  Congratulations!
Now, hop on over to see what else the Dolls have for you today, you may have come from Amy's blog, so head to Kristin's next:
Amy (kolling143)
Christy (christea)
**Kristin (jcmom04)**
Suzanne (*suzanne*)
Katie (choc0holic)
Lee Anne (Lee Anne)
Renee (Renee L.)
Sara (hiinaz)
Tanna (tfiskers)
Thanks for joining us!

stamps - PTI Botanical Sillhouettes, Fillable Frame #8
ink - PTI plum pudding, ripe avocado, fresh snow, true black
paper - PTI kraft, stamper's select white
dies - PTI Fillable Frames #8, Woodgrain impression plate

Saturday, July 16, 2011

ppd 40/41: baby thanks

Okay, I'm going to double dip for challenges, being busy with life and such.  I'm working backwards through the Paper Doll challenges, with # 41 and # 40: twine and background stamps.  Thanks Deena & Jen, both fun ideas!

Just a fun baby boy thank you - made skinny to fit a banner border.  I used Polka Dot Basics I and II on the kraft bits.  Although I've used the Night Night Moon strip as a background stamp, it's a simple strip here.  I kept the twine on the DL, too - button bows in enchanted evening. 
 Coloring those diaper pins is a blast - I love Pine's images!
Do you ever make a card you like and reproduce it?  I'm making eight of these babies :)  That's a lot of Cuttlebug cranking!  Better get to work...



stamps - PTI Night Night Moon, Tag Its #1, Polka Dot Basics I & II, Fillable Frame #5
ink - PTI spring rain, fresh snow, true black
paper - PTI spring rain, blueberry sky, kraft, stamper's select white, Bitty Star Basics 2008
accents - PTI enchanted evening baker's twine, blueberry sky vintage buttons
dies - PTI Limitless Layers 1 3/4" Circle Collection, Banner Borders, Fillable Frames #5
tools - 1 3/4" circle punch, Copics B41/B45/T1/0
ipod - Bird & Diz, Charlie Parker & Dizzy Gillespie

Friday, July 15, 2011

wonder twins

Wonder Twin powers: activate!  

Form of... an ice bucket!

Form of... a golden eagle!

(Dean & James - 14 1/2 weeks old)

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Cosmic CASE

Summertime is party season and here's a quick gift-on-the-go idea for $15 or less.  Pick up a shovel & pail set at your local drugstore.  Then run around the store looking for age-appropriate items that are:
  1. cool
  2. cheap
  3. tall & skinny
  4. color-coordinating
My super score item - a big pack of GARBAGE PAIL KIDS.  Wow.  I collected those in the 80's.  There's also a water blaster and Twizzlers.  I considered a red & white balsa flyer, but that would have pushed the price above my budget.

Now the card!  I've been slightly obsessed with tag cards.  I cut the card about the size of the PTI Library Card die (3 1/2" x 5 1/2"), which I don't own because I can make it myself with a corner rounder & hole punch, and it saves me $20.  This way I can leave corners un-rounded if I want - which I needed to do on the bottom of this card.  I also LOVE the bit of ribbon you get with tags that you can finish off with a button, bow or simple knot, depending on how rushed you are at the moment. :)

The card design is a CASE from a fellow blogger - Michelle (abzzymom) @ Michelle's Crafting Corner, my PTI Paper Dolls friend.  Her original card is here.  I changed up the color, added swirly planet buttons, and put the moon & star on the outside.  I love how she put Earth in the center of the 'orbit lines' with the rocketship speeding off towards it :)

Of course I had to use the blast-off sentiment, but the front of the card was busy enough.  My, how I {love} fillable frames for finishing the inside of a card!

Hope you're enjoying your summer time fun!!!


SUPPLIES  - (card is 3 1/2" x 5 1/2")
stamps - PTI Boy Basics: Out of This World, Masculine Motifs, Fillable Frames #3, Birthday Basics

ink - PTI pure poppy, enchanted evening, true black
paper - PTI enchanted evening
accents - PTI pure poppy, orange zest & harvest gold vintage buttons, harvest gold swiss dot ribbon
dies - PTI Alpha-blocks, Fillable Frames #3 & Rocket Die; Sunshine Impression Plate
tools - Copics, corner rounder punch, small circle punch, hole punch
ipod - They Might be Giants

Saturday, June 25, 2011

inspiration blog hop

The inspiration photo for this month's PTI blog hop immediately made me think of the cubbies at my daughter's Waldorf kindergarten.  The walls are colored in soft and beautiful shades and each child has a cubbie with a special symbol, which I recreated with ribbon, the alpha-blocks die, and tiny treats images.

This is a special 'graduation' card with requested buttons and a princess.  DD's been a ladybug and a snowman (she's a winter birthday).  But she'll be attending traditional kindergarten at the K-8 school where I teach middle school science.  It's been five years at the Waldorf school, since she was 6 months old in mommy & me classes.  We've treasured our special time there, but we're excited to move forward too.

Thank for visiting - stop by later this week for new photos of the twins, now almost 12 weeks old!!


SUPPLIES  - (card is 3 1/2" x 8" for a business envelope)
stamps - PTI Tiny Treats Valentines and Birthday, Wood Grain 
ink - PTI dark chocolate, true black
paper - PTI rustic cream, kraft
accents - PTI hibiscus felt, ribbon and  vintage buttons in spring moss, lemon tart, sweet blush, summer sunrise, melon berry, hibiscus, plum pudding, and spring rain
dies - PTI Alpha-blocks, Tiny Tags
tools - Copics R01/02/05/20, RV13/14, YR12, Y32/35/38, B41, E55, T1/4, 0

Sunday, May 22, 2011

merry's blog hop

Happy Birthday Merry!  
From your friends at the PTI forum, this hop is for YOU!

I wanted a red velvet cupcake in a jar card with warm, earthy colors. The card base design is a CASE of Betsy Veldman's Night, Night Moon card (link here).   

Hard to see, but there's a layer of clear cardstock to complete the jar look.  The candle also has a glittered star topper.  I Love this look!

On a personal note, our six-week old twin boys (spontaneous & fraternal) are nursing heartily and getting more regular sleep.  We just moved them out of our bedroom into their crib in the nursery.  It's been so nice not hearing grunts and giggles all night!

Twin A is Dean Michael - mellow guy.  He's the rather quiet, long & lean, blondie boy.  Our Dean Machine.

Twin B is James Madison - the squeaky wheel.  He's the vocal, stocky and solid, brown-haired boy.  Our Budgie, Jimmy James.

That's all for now...thanks for visiting!


stamps - PTI Friendship Jar, Cupcake Collection, Mixed Messages, Star Prints, Night Night Moon (small star)
ink - PTI dark chocolate, true black, pure poppy; Distress Ink antique linen, Versamark
paper - PTI fine linen, rustic cream, clear cardstock, Distressed Dots
accents - PTI harvest gold felt, pure poppy baker's twine, new leaf saddle stitch ribbon, pure poppy vintage buttons; crystal glitter multi ultrafine
dies - PTI Mat Stack 2 & 4, Rickrack Border, Jar & Jar Toppers, Moroccan Motifs impression plate
tools - Copics R29 & Y32, corner rounder, hole punch

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

three weeks old

In three weeks I've healed from surgery and brought the twins' weight up by nursing.  They've put on a combined 2 1/2 lbs. in 11 days (with an additional 60 oz. of milk on reserve in the freezer)!  All the pain, sweat and tears is worth it.
Dean (10 days old)

Our nurse practioner was so satisfied with their progress that we can skip the next well-baby visit, and don't need to come in again until they're eight weeks old.  That is savings, people!  Two babies is two co-pays, so that's $20 saved by breastfeeding (not to mention having no formula costs).  Plus, that 2 1/2 lbs. didn't come from nowhere - that's weight lifted off my body!  This is a win-win situation.  Exhausting, but worth it.
 James & Dean (13 days old)

Caitlyn & Dean (15 days old)

James & Dean (18 days old)

 James & Dean (21 days old)

Caitlyn & James (22 days old)

Other family fun times this spring break:
Basketball & Biking

Getting rowdy with Kaya


First haircut with mom

Caitlyn & brothers

First family walk

Saturday, April 16, 2011

buddy pics

The little buddies are 11 days old now - still nursing like champs and getting more regular in their sleep cycles.  Caitlyn's home for 2 weeks of spring break so we're looking forward to slowing down into our natural family tempo.

First Bath at home!  (James, 4 days old)

First doctor's visit: they gained back their birth weight; jaundice is gone in James (upper right) and improving for Dean (lower left)Breastfeeding success! - the nurse practitioner said it's the best weight gain she'd seen for twins in 32 years. (6 days old)

So. Cal. livin' - 8 minutes out in Sun Diego to beat the jaundice (James & Dean, 9 days old)

First Signs - west siiide.

Post-sun, 3 seconds away from screaming for milkies. (Dean & James, 9 days old)

It's a Bonita life!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

they're hee-re

It's been one week since the birth of our spontaneous fraternal twins.  Life is good, but exhausting.  This is as big as it got:
Dean Michael - air lifted on April 5, 2011 at 10:10 a.m.    6 lbs. 8 oz.     19 1/2"
 At three days old:

James Madison - air lifted on April 5, 2011 at 10:12 a.m.     5 lbs. 10 oz.     19 1/4"
 At three days old:

Daddy with James and mommy with Dean - about 2 hours old.

Big sis Caitlyn holding Dean (who looks just like she did) - 1 day old

Our brood, together at last: James, Caitlyn & Dean - 3 days old

Tummy Time: Daddy, James, Dean, Caitlyn - 4 days old

Bruddahs: James & Dean (what they do when not nursing) - 4 days old

Swaddle escape artists: James & Dean - 5 days old