Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Blog Vacation!

I'm taking this week off from my personal blog...trying to catch up with the rest of my life!
Come back next week when I hope to be back in the saddle again!

Friday, July 25, 2008

Almost Wordless Weekend....

Since I'm two weeks behind on wordless wednesday......

So, take note that none of the cabinetry has door or drawer fronts on them yet!

The mudroom: 4 lockers with a bench inbetween

I call this the insane wall of storage in the laundry room

Stonework in progress

Front porch in progress...no columns or railing yet

Master bathroom shower

Master bathroom vanities and raised make-up vanity/counter

Kitchen in progress ...that's dusty paper on the floor...not the flooring!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

My Nanny

For today's Thinking Back Thursday I'd like to share some of my favorite memories about my Nanny...my grandma on my mom's side. Her full name (including her catholic confirmation name) is Emily Mildred Theresa Caterino Bakken...whoa...that's a mouthfull! I'll just stick with Nanny!

My earliest memories of her are when we lived in Modesto, CA and we had a pool in the backyard. I just remember her laying out on a lawn chair watching us kids and smoking her cigarette.

My Nanny has always made the BEST homemade spaghetti sauce with italian sausage and meetballs. However when I was little, I was clueless and had no appreciation for it. She would labor over the stove for a HUGE family gathering making her sauce and when mealtime came I would say..."can I just have butter on my noodles please!" But she loved me dearly and always set aside a plain bowl of noodles before she lathered the rest of them in her yummy sauce.

I mentioned staying at my Nanny and Papa's house in a previous thinking back..but I'll elaborate. I stayed with them for over a month the summer when I was 6 years old. They managed an apartment complex so there was a pool and always lots of interesting people around. There was one lady who had a parrot and another who was a clown....stuff like that. Everybody loved my grandparents and they would often stop by the front office just to say hi to my Nanny while she was working. Every morning my Nanny would stand at the bottom of the stairs and call me down for breakfast. When I got downstairs my breakfast would be sitting there on a tray in front of the couch waiting for me. I would eat breakfast while watching the show "Alice" (you know the one with the waitresses who worked at Mel's Diner) Our favorite was when the character Flo would say, "Mel, kiss my grits!"
My Nanny ALWAYS had a jar of pickles in the fridge for me because she knew they were my favorite! And one of our favorite commercials was the vlassic one with the bird that would say, "that's the best tasting pickle I ever had." Remember the one with girl who says, "Dad...when you gonna eat that pickle?" That was our favorite.
Then there was the Young and the Restless. I watched it with her everyday that I was there! She still watches it everyday...I gave up the habit years ago!
When I left and went back home that summer, my Nanny had a really hard time letting go of me. In fact there were days that she would prepare my breakfast tray and call for me, only to realize I was gone. She told my mom she would never keep a grandchild that long again...it was just to hard to let them go afterwards. There are so many memories, but I know all you bloggers out there prefer posts that aren't on the lengthy side! So I'll share more another time. I just want to say that my Nanny is the BEST. I love her tons and love spending time with her playing cards. She is the coolest, hippest, cutest 85 year old lady you'll ever see!

This is her and I at her 85th birthday with the cake I made for her!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

What's wrong with me?

Today I'm on a Tirade...and it's about MYSELF!!!

I'm totally living in this place of frustration with myself. My nature in the past has been to be a tunnel vision type of person. When I'm into something...I'M INTO IT.

A year and a half ago it was coupon shopping. I lived and breathed it. I was saving money and it was good. But then it was my daughter's birthday and we put the house up for sale and my mind didn't seem to be able to handle it all. Then it was onto house plans...oh boy did I live and breath house plans! Somewhere in there I was really good and focused about my cleaning schedule for the house and planning out my meals. But I guarantee you I wasn't doing good with that while doing one of those other things.

Then there's the things I do that are easy to laugh at (and I do) but they also made me cry when I did them...like back into the garage door at the last house...two different times....both times from INSIDE the garage trying to get out! Then like 6 months ago I backed into a pole that only 10 minutes before when I got out of the car I had noticed and said to myself..."don't back into that pole" When these things happen I have an honest reaction of crying because I truly wonder what it wrong with me.

In the last year and a half I have experienced the emotion of being overwhelmed by things...and that NEVER use to happen to me. So my tunnel vision and my forgetfulness (or whatever you want to call it) affects more than just me. It affects my family because I get so enveloped in what I'm doing sometimes that I neglect other things that need to get done...even the simple things like laundry. But when you have a husband whose love language is Acts of Service...this doesn't exactly fill up his love tank!

So I spent yesterday telling my counselor how screwed up I am. She suggested that I plan out a daily schedule and really try to stick to it. Plan when I'm going to do blog design. Plan when I'm going to do housework. Plan when I'm going to exercise. Plan when I'm going to have my quiet time with God. I know that to some of you all this planning sounds heavenly....but to me it sounds like my own personal hell! But I'm going to do it and that will be the last time that I say I'm going to hate it! Because I really want to have a positive attitude about it and not train my brain to think that I can't do it! The other thing I'm suppose to do is go to the library and get this book about cognitive thinking. Apparently its about being in the moment that you are in instead of the next one....which is why I back into the garage door apparently...because my mind is thinking about what is next instead of what is currently going on. Right now I think that's what it means anyway. I need to get the book. Hopefully I can learn how to think cognitively...because the new garage doors need to stay dent free!!!

So that's my tirade. I'm frustrated with myself and the way I function. And I want it to change. Now I just need to make the effort and take the steps to move forward and do it!

Do any of you ever feel like this though? What is it about YOU that bugs YOU?

Monday, July 21, 2008

From Fun to Sentimental....

First I want to show you my newest pre-designed Brand Name look. It's for all those teachers out there looking for a way to communicate with parents and students and do it in style! I'm calling it Schoolhouse Teacher.

I got a few blogs done last week. A couple Couture looks, and a couple pre-designed Designer Label looks.

The first was a Couture look was for Jacki who was the winner of the big SITS giveaway! She wanted something bright and fun to reflect her personality!

The next Couture look was for Kelly of Jewelry by kd designs. Not only did I do her blog, I did her business cards, shipping labels, and packing labels. Hop on over to her blog to check out her jewelry!

Then it was onto a pre-designed Designer Label blog for Miss Matz! Do you recognize it?

It use to look like this......She paid a little extra to have the colors of this pre-designed look tailored to her personal taste!

I love the idea of this last blog I did. It was orignally a pre-designed Designer Label look titled "ribbon wrapped vintage". But now it is the home of a family memorial blog to honor the life of Emily LaRue Gardner McCleve. The family will be using it to share the stories of her life. Beautiful idea!

Saturday, July 19, 2008


I was just listening to the radio and this song came on. I was brought to tears by the powerful words. I've heard it before. Several times. But I don't think I had ever really listened until a few weeks ago.....We have some dear friends who have been through more than some people have to go through in a lifetime and they are only in their early 30's. The loss of both parents and they themselves being near death and undergoing emergency surgeries.

One of them gave their testimony at church a few weeks ago and during it he mentioned how this song had really hit home for him. Take a minute to read the lyrics of the song "Bring the Rain" by MercyMe. It's VERY powerful and SO TRUE! It's been true in my own life, and I watched this other family live out the truth of these words as well.

I can count a million times
People asking me how I
Can praise You with all that I’ve gone through

The question just amazes me
Can circumstances possibly
Change who I forever am in You

Maybe since my life was changed
Long before these rainy days
It’s never really ever crossed my mind

To turn my back on you oh Lord
My only shelter from the storms
But instead I draw closer through these times

So I pray

Bring me joy, bring me peace
Bring the chance to be free
Bring me anything that brings You glory

And I know There’ll be days
When this life brings me pain
But if that’s what it takes to praise You
Jesus Bring the Rain

I am Yours regardless of
The dark clouds that may loom above
Because You are much greater than my pain

You who made a way for me
By suffering Your destiny
So tell me what’s a little rain

Holy, Holy, Holy
Is the Lord God Almighty

Thursday, July 17, 2008

From Trailer to Trailer

If you've been reading my blog then you know that we are currently living in our 5th wheel trailer inside of our shop while we are building our house. What you probably don't know is how this is a return to our early marriage roots!

When I met my hubby he was a single guy who owned his own business, owned his own piece of property....and his own 1970's single wide trailer! It was complete with 70's green shag carpet and everything!! During our engagement he remodeled the single wide and updated pretty much everything. New paint, new carpet, new vinyl floors, new faucets, new countertops, new light fixtures...you name it! It wasn't totally done by the time we got married but our family worked on it while we were on our honeymoon and by the time we got back it was "fit for a princess".....on the inside! From the outside...well that's another story it was your classic 70's single wide complete with lots of RUST and tin roof!
Two years later we moved into our first home that we built on the same property. 2.5 years after that we moved into our second home..and now5.5 years later we are living in a trailer again waiting for your third home to be complete. It's funny how things come full circle sometimes!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

It's my One Year BLOGIVERSARY!

{no wordless wednesday today}

Wow, I actually can't believe it's only been a year since I started this little bloggin' adventure!
This was my very first post:

First Time

My first blog post. I don't like to type too much, so my words may be scattered, my sentences incomplete.

Life is crazy. House for sale. Travel Trailer for sale.
New house plans incomplete and up in the air.
Tired of keeping my house clean for showings!

Just finished leading crafts all week at VBS for church....
best moment.... when a first grade boy came back into the room to tell me that "This was a nice craft." My heart melted. I pray the hearts of children were changed forever last week!

Creatively Speaking: Getting ready to work on an ad for a local realtor. It don't pay the bills, but it can buy mama a new pair of shoes!

And my first comment was from my SIL Michele:
glad to see that you joined us bloggers. it is a great way to get inside someone brains to see what they are thinking... people just share different things when they can type it instead of say it.

It's hard to believe that I've gone from that to what my previous post was with my new "website"!!!

I've done 269 posts in 365 days....NOT BAD! And that's just on THIS blog! What started out with one blog became several blogs. I've got a blog with some girlfriends about taking pictures where we share pics and tips called Fotogirlz (it's private) I had a workout record blog at one time...that was a bust (which is why my butt keeps getting bigger!) I did the 500 prayers for Luke blog and all of you prayed for a little boy with leukemia (who by the way is currently in remission and doing VERY WELL! Praise God!) Then I started my design blog...my portfolio.. and at any given time my profile can have like 15 blogs listed because of the blogs I'm currently working on and designing! It's crazy!!

So, I know a lot of people do giveaways and stuff like that, but I'm playing it low key. Just sittin' back and saying "Wow, what a year!"

Monday, July 14, 2008


I was WAY to busy last week with VBS and the Carnival to work, so come back next week for new designs. In the meantime this is my newest masterpiece..........

Announcing the new and improved {and shorter} www.eightcrazydesign.com

That's right! You can drop the blogspot because I'm a big girl now and bought my very own domain name! WHoooo Hoooo! It even kind of operates more like a real website...even though it's really still a blog from the backend!

Check it out!!!

Thursday, July 10, 2008


Working at VBS again this year has made me think about church camp from when I was a kid. The camp I went to was called "Hooplagrande" It was soooo much fun. We met at the church and took a bus to this outdoor day camp and there were all sorts of fun things to do. We would meet in these little tree covered dens with our group leaders for teaching time and I remember there was a zip line. The bus was a blast because we would sing songs like "spring up old well ....splish-splish-splish-splash...." and "the wheels on the bus" ...and ... "give me wax on my board, keep me surfing for the Lord" But my favorite song was the camp song!! I remember every word:

Oh they say that camps are boring and they're never any fun
But we know the camp were going to is surely number one.

We drive the counselors crazy and we keep them on the run
The fun has just begun!

Singing songs and running races
Itcyr skeeters in all places

We gather in our dens with friends
To learn of Jesus Christ

Hooplagrande is the BEST

Hooplagrande is the BEST!!!

......it really WAS the BEST!!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Fireworks and VBS

VBS Water Games!

And since I can't just put pictures of random kids on my blog.......

Oh Kelli..... I'm sure you're gonna kill me for this!!
But I couldn't resist!!!!

4th of July

This is blury because the shutter was open and I didn't have a tripod, but it gives you an idea of how many fireworks we could see throughout the valley.

Just having fun with the shutter open thing!

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

What’s on my mind today….Well, it’s really not that much of a Tirade today…but here it goes…..

Actually I’m in a pretty good mood today! You would think with VBS I’d be stressed, but I’m not. I’m super excited about planning the Friday Carnival this year. Last year at this time I would’ve Tiraded about the Carnival….so that’s why I’m planning it this year. For the most part I’m a person who likes to live by the code of “If you’re gonna complain then you have to be willing to be a part of the solution!” I realize that sometimes that’s just not possible. But when it is…I try!

I suppose I could Tirade about that…people who only complain but NEVER DO anything about it….oh but then I’d be talking about myself and how I complain about my body but don’t work out and eat like food is going out of style!

Ok, where was I…oh yes, I was in a good mood!

Anyway…I’m excited and I will have to tell you more about the carnival over the weekend. I’ll take lots of pics! It’s gonna be fun!

Ok, so this may change ya’lls opinion about me altogether…but I think ya’ll should know that I watch The BACHELORETTE! Oh my goodness who would’ve thunk that she would’ve ended up with Jesse with the pink shoe laces, and neon splatter painted jacket? But they were the most giddy couple I’ve seen on that show!! And they already set a wedding date! Could there FINALLY be another marriage out of this show after like 8 years or something like that!!! I think the tell tale sign of who she was choosing was when she took Jesse on the romantic private island date and then she took Jason scuba diving with sharks!

Well, I’m feeling like it was kind of a boring Tirade today…OH OH OH! I know….SPAM! Blogger comment SPAM! Oooooh it makes me mad. A few months back I had to add the word verification to my comment form because I would always get one spam comment right away after I would post. I have more than one blog…so it was especially annoying. So, it’s been a few months and I decided to lift the word verification to see if maybe the spammers had given up on my blog since I’d blocked them for so long…..NOT SO MUCH! I posted and IMMEDIATELY got THREE spam comments within like 2 minutes of posting. So now I’m back to the word verification thing again! ANNOYING!

Ok, now I’m done!

Monday, July 7, 2008

I'm kinda weird...

So I was leaving the dollar store eating the ice cream sandwich I had just bought and I started thinking...."what is my problem? When am I gonna get it together and start eating right and working out again?"

So as I drove home I made up this song in my head to the tune of "Tomorrow" from Annie:

I’m gonna work out
Bet your bottom dollar
That tomorrow
I will run!

Just thinkin’ about
And the workout routine,
I will follow...
It’ll be FUN!

When I start off my day
And weigh,
thinkin' “if only”,
I just stick out my double chin
And Grin,
And Say,

I’m gonna work out
This fat is gonna hang on
‘Til tomorrow

I’ll work out

You’re always
A day
A way!

Blog Fashion

I installed one Couture Design last week. I have about 3 more in process right now that will probably get installed this week. So lots to show you next time on Masterpiece Monday.
Unitl then take a look at Equilibrium. It's a fun, funky, retro design!

I spent a bit of time sort of revamping my design blog and what I'm offering to buyers. I have new price points ranging from $18 - $88. I'm looking at designs more like "Blog Fashion" and asking....."How can I help you dress up your blog?"

I'm offering Couture, Designer Label, and Brand Name Blog Fashions! For more info about my Blog Fashions and pricing go HERE!!

I've got lots of new pre-designs up with all different price points, so take a look by going to my portfolio!

Here is a sneak peek:

Thursday, July 3, 2008

There are people who would file a law suit today!

Today I'm taking you back to the second grade.

I walked home from school everyday. Most of the time I walked with my sister, but some days she would walk with her friends, and me with mine. On this particular day I was without my sister and I was walking home with my friend Stephanie. I lived about 3-4 blocks further from school than Stephanie did, though, so some of the way I walked by myself.

There was this boy named Doug. Doug was the kind of boy who would come up to you on the playground and tell you he had a secret to tell you. Then when he went to tell you the secret he would kiss you instead. He was a skirt flipper on "Friday flip up day"....that kind of boy! YUCK!

I hated when Doug would try to kiss me! He walked the same way that Stephanie and I did to go home, so sometimes he would just try and run up and kiss us.

So on this one particular day Doug was walking behind us but he wasn't alone. His older brother and a couple other older boys were with him. I knew his older brother was trouble, so I was a little bit nervous. I remember when we got to Steph's house and I had to continue walking by myself....I got really scared. I did not want to walk the rest of the way alone. I came to a corner where there were two ways to go to get to my house. I went one way and Doug followed, the older boys went the other. When we came to the place where those two paths met I was suddenly surrounded. The next thing I new I was being held down by two of the older boys while Doug kissed me. OH I was so disgusted!!! And I was soo mad!!

It's funny though, because I don't remember running home afterwards, or telling my mom and dad all about it. I'm sure they will comment to let me know if I did or not!

I remember just being really disgusted and mad, but can you imagine that happening today!! WOW! That would be called sexual harassment these days and somebody would probably sue somebody, have them sent to anger management classes, or have them expelled or something. Oh how times have changed! It's not anything that scared me or anything like that. It's really just more of a surreal memory.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Giveaways Galore!!!

First things first....I'm being featured Thursday by both the SITS Girls and Tip Junkie! Am I the luckiest girl in the world or what!!!! So exciting! I've been blessed to have Tiffany, Heather and Laurie all as blog design clients of mine! They are the best!

I've got two giveaways to share with ya'll! The first one is July 3rd only! Head on over to Tip Junkie to win a $28 gift card towards and EightCrazy Designs Blog Design. You know you want to "eightcrazyify" your blog!! Oh, and after today her giveaway continues with lots of other great stuff! CHECK IT OUT!!

The next is some BEAUTIFUL jewelry from Gems By George!! Head on over to her blog to enter to win a fabulous piece of jewelry vauled at $40!!!


by the way....
come back tomorrow because I'm being featured by Tip Junkie and participating in a giveaway. You could win a $28 dollar gift card to eightcrazy designs!

A little explanation.....

EdITED AT 12:31 pm:

Wordless Wednesday will commence a little later in the day!

Just wanted to explain my new commenting thing. When you click to comment it opens up a page that asks for your email address and your url (or blog address) YOU SHOULD ONLY HAVE TO FILL IT OUT ONCE!!! It should remember you after that.

PLEASE FILL IN YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS!!! It will not be visible to ANYONE BUT ME! It allows me to respond to your comment by email if I so choose!


When you say something funny and witty...I just might have something to say back! Or sometimes people ask questions....I want to answer you...really I do!!

For example, someone named LARISSA left me a comment and wanted me to respond, but she didn't leave any info! Larissa....I'd love to chat with you about blog design, but I have no way of reaching you!

It's pretty simple and it's way more practical than the normal blogger process. Thanks everybody! Keep the comment love comin'!!

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Too funny not to share....but kinda gross too!

so each tuesday it's my son's job to empty all the trash cans out. Today he was emptying the bathroom trash and comes in and says, "MOM! Someone went poop and wrapped their poop up in the toilet paper and put it in the trash can!"

so.....at that moment do you explain to a 5 year old boy about tampons and periods, or do you just let him think it was poop and continue to wonder WHO would do that? Yep, I opted for letting him think it was poop!

I know...kinda gross...but like I said, too funny not to share!

now scroll down to read my Tirade Tuesday!