Monday, January 1, 2024

States & Countries Visited

 Updated map (from my 2013 post)

We visited Hawaii in 2017, and added multiple states from our 2020 road trip from California to Ohio. I count states that we drove though, but I don't count a state if I have only been inside an airport. 

visited 33 states (66%)
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Now onto the world map... 

visited 5 states (2.22%)
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I am planning to add 3 more countries in 2024. 

My Word for 2024

 Happy New Year! 

It's been a minute (or 11 years) since I chose a word for the year. I was having some angst as the calendar turned over. I have a variety of ideas for the new year and a big trip planned. I wanted to add a structure to the new year without setting a resolution or strict goals. Then I remembered One Little Word

Past Words: 

2007 - Discover

2008 - Challenge

2011 - Happiness

2013 - Create

My sporadic assignment of words included some "unofficial" words as life unfolded: Baby/Alex (2009 & 2010) and Change (2012). Yep, those years included some big life changes! 

Now older and wiser, I will try to anchor my year with a word. I happen to have a gift card to cover the cost of the year-long workshop to help me connect with my word. (Thank you preschool families!) 

Here are my top ideas: enough, joy, love, enjoy, journey. 

I am choosing LOVE ENOUGH for my word. I debated between two words and am looking for a word to help me be more self-reflective. 

Cheers to a new year! 

Tuesday, October 31, 2023

New Hobby: Sewing

 I have been interested in learning to sew for years, and I am finally starting this new hobby. I took home economics in 7th grade, and my mom has a sewing machine, but I never took the time to learn beyond a few repairs and sewing on a button. I am teaching part-time this school year, so I can use my more flexible schedule to have time for sewing. 

Our library allows you to check out a sewing machine for 2 weeks, so that was a good start. I quickly realized that I wanted to learn on my own machine. I started with a budget of $200 and was interested in a couple of Singer machines

I also realized that it will be helpful to have classes about my machine and projects. YouTube has a variety of helpful videos, but it won't completely replace in-person learning for me. After looking at a variety of machines at JoAnn's, I expanded my budget a bit. The Husqvarna Viking Onxy 25 looks like a good beginner, mechanical machine. 

I decided to check out a local sewing store on my day off. I tried the Onyx 25 again before asking if they had a ny used machines. It was my lucky day! They only had two used machines, and one was the right fit for my budget and interests. I found a Smarter by Pfaff 260c for $300 (including tax). The machine is less than a year old, and the previous owner was quickly ready for an upgrade due to her stronger interest in sewing than she originally expected. The machine had been serviced and comes with 90-Day warranty and lessons. 

For now, I have made an infinity scarf and am checking out for help with my machine. 

Wednesday, September 20, 2023

Bike Ride from London, Ohio to Columbus

We had the perfect weather for a fall bike ride! It is about 30 miles one way from London to Columbus, Ohio. 

We started with coffee from the London Coffee Peddler, and I will go back from more of the cold brew. We had time to chat and get helpful biking tips from the owner. We had lunch at the M & M Diner, which is a popular spot right off the bike path. We went to park our car for the night in the public lot before beginning the ride. (A call to the London Police Department helped us plan this aspect of our trip.) 

The ride started off with miles of flat, nicely paved trail and beautiful views. We enjoyed both the trees and the fields. Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park was a nice stop during our ride. This park offers another option for overnight parking, shade, and clean restrooms. The park connects riders to the Ohio to Erie Trail with some gravel paths. John's gravel bike was great, and my road bike slowly made it without pavement for a little while. 

It was a change of scenery to enter the Columbus area from rural Ohio, especially later on a Friday afternoon. We had to navigate more road crossings and turns. It was nice to make it to the Scioto Riverfront area with wide paths and a well-kept area of downtown. 

Our ending point was German Village, which we had only briefly explored before this trip. We booked a room at the South Wind Motel and enjoyed our stay. The first floor room allowed us to park our bikes inside. We stopped for Jeni's Ice Cream and walked around The Book Loft. Breakfast at the German Village Coffee House was a highlight with more time to walk through Schiller Park and around the neighborhood of German Village. It was a quick trip, so it makes me want to find time for more biking adventures during the cooler weather. 

Sunday, June 25, 2023

Cricut Creations


I bought my Cricut in the fall of 2019, but I only use it sporadically. I am still looking for ways to learn the machine and use it more often, but I am still happy to have it. In April, I made gifts for my niece's second birthday. I used Cricut heat transfer vinyl and images from Design Space. 

Thursday, June 15, 2023

Card Making Shortcut & Shop Hop

Cut and scored white card bases are my favorite card making shortcut! This really does save me time and energy when I am crafting. I try to keep the A2 size on hand, but I am running low on my pack from Catherine Pooler Designs. Unfortunately, I can no longer find the 8.5 x 5.5 size from Catherine Pooler. My local paper store came to the rescue, and I am ready for the Shop Hop in July. I plan to make it to 5 of the stores included this year since we have a variety of family plans in July. 

My daughter is at a morning day camp this week, so I had some uninterrupted shopping time at one of my local stores. I found a good deal on a couple of dies! The Bee Happy set came with my Shop Hop Passport. 

I have birthday and thank you cards to make, so I can put these new supplies to good use. 

2 New Cards

 I bought some craft supplies this year, and now summer allows me more time for crafting. I made two cards with some new and older supplies. A couple of months ago I added large rainbow stripes to some watercolor paper with my set of paints, so this became the starting point for my cards. 

Supplies used: 

from Stampin' Up! (many are retired) 

Amazing Silhouettes stamp set 

Amazing Thanks Dies 

Butterfly embossing folder

Stitched dies

Ink pads

Night of Navy ink and card stock

Glitter and gold papers

Pearls and sequins 

General Supplies

Watercolors & Watercolor paper 

Catherine Pooler white card stock 

Thursday, June 8, 2023

Baby Shower Card

 It's fun to see your craft supplies with fresh eyes. My friend and neighbor looked through my supplies as we planned for another neighbor's baby shower during our annual block party, and we found this stamp set. 

I stamped simple advice cards on colored card stock and made a card. It was fun to add layers and details after taking a break from card making. 

I even decorated the envelope! 

Our block party was a hit as we celebrated neighbors expecting their first baby and a family moving to Pennsylvania for new career opportunities. The fire department brought over one of the trucks for the kids, and we stayed out until dark. The disco ball has been passed on, and I know that we will continue to gather on our block. I am grateful for my neighbors, friends, and hobbies as we begin summer!