One Mama Duck

Crafting my way through life - one adventure at a time.

Hi! I'm LisaDV. Thanks for stopping by. This is my life, crazy and chaotic most of the time, and I wouldn't change a thing.

Monday, December 21, 2015

Productivity is over-rated

The contractor pulled the crew out on Friday evening with a break until Jan. 4th. Hurray! I've cleaned up the dining area, bathroom, and the large floor debris, but I can't move anything really back or get really settled as they'll be back in less than 2 weeks.  The electrician comes in January 7 & 8th. The 11th if needed. 

Friday, Don & Logan went to see Star Wars. They were not impressed. My son said he'd rather watch Lucas' (poorly written and executed) love scenes from the 2nd prequel. That's saying something.  So Gabriella and I decided we could wait to see it.

Saturday, we readied ourselves for a trip to Grand Rapids to see the Nutcracker. It did not disappoint. Gabriella picked out a en pointe shoe that was signed by the Sugar Plum Fairy of the performance as her souvenir. There were 2 different SPFairies during the performance and both were amazing! We  had sushi for lunch too - added bonus.  We hit JoAnns for material for our homemade stockings we're making this year. (and a thrift store for an old cream sweater for my stocking).  Then Don surprised us with a drive through the light display before heading for home. A very nice day indeed.

 The only down side for me was I started Saturday with a sort of runny nose and before we had finished the 2 hour trip my throat was scratchy and sore. Typical, I finally get a break where I can get something done, and I get sick. So yesterday and today, we are doing things but slowly --the I cleaned off the kitchen table and put the leaf in with the kids help and then had to take a break slowly.  I keep feeling I should go do something productive, but once I do a small thing, I'm finished. Hopefully tomorrow I'll be good as new. 

Since every cloud has a silver lining, the up side to being sick and no energy to muster chores means that I have digitally completed a 2 page double layout. These photos are from 5-2-2014.  Journaling reads: What do home-schoolers do when their work is finished? They build extravagant mini-golf courses for the family to enjoy, of course! And we did!  All supplies are either Scotty Girl Designs or Mommyish, including a joint collab by them.

Sunday, December 13, 2015

I'm finished. at least emotionally

My Daily December:

It's done me in!  I'm so over this construction already. The contractor and workers are terrific. They've busted and moved, and I'm super-duper impressed with them. But even if they pull out with their end complete by December 23rd, there is still painting to be done and window wear to be hung and furniture to move in.  But what got me this week was that after clearing the spaces originally told to us so they could work, I was given 3 new areas that needed to be freed up.  With 2 bedrooms and the hall and the basement cleared to the shed, our already cramped bedroom, a hall closet and the main living area.  HOW pray tell do you expect me to clear those areas in the main living area and where would you like it to go?  I guess I forgot to tell you that I don't have a magic wand. The next thing to get me was that I won't be able to put up decorations for Christmas. This is my girl's first Christmas knowing there is no Santa, so I wanted it to be extra special. This IS NOT extra special. It's a special sort of disarray that even us in our chaotic and crazy adventures we consider a horrible mess of YUK.  And for us, that's saying something.

It's also my co-op break which I was hoping to devote more school time since we'd have a whole extra day. Of course, with the the construction, everything has been strained to say the least.  Also, I like to get some crafting in during the break and I'll be hard-pressed to get the room back in order before the new year.  I was hoping to do some cards for Christmas but that is not going to happen.

And to top it all off, I ordered tickets to the local Nutcracker ballet. I had it in my mind as the 12th and even written on the calendar. We (my daughter and myself) were all excited.  She was asking on the evening of the 11th about the tickets (it was probably 10:00pm). I took them off the refrigerator and showed them to her and saw. They were for the 11th at 7:30pm.  I've cried more than once at my blunder.  I'm usually the responsible one.  The girl with the planner.  Not so much this time.  So we'll be attempting a run to Grand Rapids to see the ballet there.

I have to remember that it's all worth it in the end!  So, so, so, SO VERY worth it.  Yes, embrace that. Stop the worry.  Don't beat myself up over the mistakes that are bound to be part of this unrest now.

Remember the true meaning of Christmas is that we have a Savior that came to this earth so that we might be saved and live forever. Talk about a joyous time of year even without decorations.

Friday, December 4, 2015

Embracing the Simple

Hubs started his own business at the beginning of the year. The Lord just seemed to open the path before him after he was laid off last year. On Tuesday, the first of December, we were talking about the gifts he was getting his associates this year. In the years past, he would pick something out and charge it to the company he was working for and most often a staff member would mail them.  It then donned on me that I should make him some Christmas Cards to send. Since he is giving bottles of area whiskey, wine or beer (depending upon the persons taste), I did make a couple of bottle tags that he could sign as well. These are a cut file from Lori Whitlock over at the silhouette store.

The stamp is from a Christmas tag set from Stampin' Up! that I just used a marker on one of the three trees in the row to stamp it. Super simple for me, and super cute to get. I think I'll be all about EMBRACING the SIMPLE this year.

Day 3 of Construction:
 Started like this, with 2 small holes for supports 
and this large section at the foot of the stairs needing concrete.

And ended like this: The spots filled, plus some to level a spot in the waterheater room, some leftover going around a dirt spot by the furnace and leveling some space behind the furnace.

  And then with the kids putting their initials into the concrete, so they can show their grandkids how they've marked their house. (Again, embracing the simple) We went upstairs from that and Gabriella tells Logan, "I call dibs on the house!" haha. I've told them a million times that they're each just going to build wings onto the house for their families so they have their own space and we (Don & I) will be in the middle. My secret is....Shhh.....Easy access to warping the minds of our grandkids!!!

Thursday, December 3, 2015

My December Daily

The contractor has started the work. The first work day being - December 1st. We're on day 3 and I just realized this is my December Daily. Plus I need to remember to take photos in process. And to think I actually use to always be taking photos, and now I can't ever seem to remember too.

Day 1: The first day was cutting holes for the footings for support beams in the basement. Talk about stench and dust! Even with us trying to block most of the holes and major spots, the flooring itself would allow the dust through.

This is what it looked like after day one. There are actually 7-8 of these holes in the basement. Don worked tirelessly in between work calls to help them, which helps keep our costs down since we're on an hourly rate for each worker here.  After they had left there was a 5 foot by 3 foot section that was just dirt at the bottom of the stairs and over to the door of the water heater room that Don and I cleared down 3 inches. Don wanted concrete poured there as well.

Day 2:  All of these holes had re-bar put drilled into them. And just like the size of the hole and the amount of holes may be over-kill, the re-bar as well. I wish I had taken a photo of the large holes, but imagine steel bars on each side of at least 4 per side. And then it was filled in with concrete. There was a whole palette of concrete brought in and when they left at 3:30, it was to go buy more concrete. The doorway and 3 holes were still empty at the end of the day. 

Over the course of the first two days, I kept myself busy taking off the old barn wood white painted paneling from the upstairs hallway. I want to keep that for a future project. Not sure what, but those hoarding tendencies obviously extend past crafting supplies. 

But as my niece pointed out, I should be tracking these changes. So I really like the idea of making this my blog a place to post about the construction process. It will hold me accountable and remind me to take those photos. 

WOO HOO for having this work complete.  Now to settle on a floor color.....

Saturday, November 28, 2015


With only 2 days until the contractor FINALLY starts on the extra support for this old house and the rooms upstairs, I've come to realize that it is also only 2 (TWO) days until December 1st. With that, I sit and ponder if the advent calendar might be downstairs or is it out in the shed. Then the next realization, my daughter, who started having massive belly issues the summer of 2014, was taken off eggs, soy, all dairy, gluten, legumes, and green beans just to name a few this past spring -- WHAT am I going to put in the advent calendar???  I've come to realize also she does best with very limited sugar and with no grains in the evening.  Normally I can think of things further in advance, but with the house being in the shape it is, and life as it has been, I seem to only be able to comprehend the next task at hand.  If I had been thinking, I would have had hubs look at the food store by where he works last week for certain advent items. Before I could stuff the box with notes about we're making a treat or putting up a decoration.  We haven't tested a large variety of cookies or candies, but have some. There are a few decent ones, but none that are what we're use to quality.  As for decorations, we've decided that we're not  doing anything until the contractor is done. 2-3 weeks. We'll be lucky to get the tree up, quite honestly. And we usually put it up the first weekend after Thanksgiving.  On a positive note, for my immediate family, I'm almost completely finished with holiday shopping. Sonshine still needs a few things, but I know what I'm buying. Just waiting for those credit card reward gift certificates to get here. Love reward points! Especially love almost being done. Now to really clean the bathroom since the workers will be using it and the path to the bathroom. With the upstairs and the downstairs having to remain basically clear, the stuff has to go somewhere and the new shed only holds so much. Hopefully we're only talking 2 weeks to completion, but realistically, I just hope the kids have bedrooms by Christmas!  Realizing we might be up a creek without a paddle here.

On a scrappy note, I  sent out my annual calendar swap for this year earlier this week. I wasn't as happy with it as in years past, it's just so simple. I really wanted to make a shaker preserve jar embellishment. But it is what it is.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Scrap Our Stash Sketch Challenge 31

This past October as I was gleaning ideas from multiple sources for the 2peasrefugee crop, I ran across the Scrap Our Stash site.  Now I'm a hoarder by nature, so anything where my stash gets used grabs hold of my attention pretty darn quickly. This was the only site that I bookmarked to go back to which also says something.

So with my hubs, who was off for hunting last week but ended up sick and in my face instead, now back to work, I finally had some time to play with their current challenge. It's Sketch Challenge 31. I chose to flip the sketch. I also used the "I" column in BINGO: paper clip (swirl at the top of the photo which have been in my stash for years), doily, glitter (washi and alphas), journal card (which I cut down and rounded the corners of the 'focus on the happy' card in the lower right hand corner), and metal (in addition to the paper clip, a heart brad and a making memories metal and rhinestone word "LOVE" all being very old stash items). Does anyone else get giddy when they use old items on the page??

The photo color isn't quite true and seems a bit blurry to me. It's not IRL. or maybe I should put on my glasses. ha. Also used: the newer Shimelle True Stories collection which was love at first sight for me; wood veneer hearts, sequins, some homemade hearts made from colored modeling paste, and a old large foam heart used for stringing practice when the kids were small, I just cut the top off so it wasn't as bulky. Re-purposing items also makes me a bit giddy

I knew I was going to use the Shimelle collection and that journaling card on this layout. If not for this sketch challenge, I would have stuck to the normal band or L design with regular rectangle layers and a full sized journaling card. I have to say I'm thrilled that I didn't, I love how this turned out! 

Thursday, November 19, 2015

A Few Favorites

Over at the 2peasrefugees proboards group, we just had a crop.  I was reminded again how truly wonderful Peas can be. Many volunteered to host challenges or to give prizes.  I think everyone who had the time to participate had fun. For me personally, it was a long overdue time to be creative. The whole month of October was very limited on creative time. Thankfully, I was teaching art journaling and scrapbooking at our homeschool co-op, so I did have some creative time for that. But with prepping for the contractor to come in  (ehem, still waiting - he says he'll be here next week) and with putting away the wood for winter, because yeah, we waited until the last minute to order 9 cords of wood.

Anywho, I really wanted to put up a few of my favorite layouts from the crop. I finished 12 layouts in total! Woo Hoo!

This was from the triangle challenge and uses the Shimelle True Stories collection. Unfortunately, I could not find the pedal to my old sewing machine that I use on paper. So I hand treadled the needle to make stitching holes on each triangle. I really wanted it threaded and almost (ALMOST)  hand stitched them.  But then I remembered something very important -- I'm lazy!
 This was a sketch challenge. AND I LOVE how it turned out. My journaling is the little pocket.

 This  is a die cut challenge and was hosted by Ashley Calder at Things That Shine Etsy. She donated 6, SIX, die cut files including this fabulous one - the Nordic Star Sweater Full. I cut the file and then individually pieced each one with my Scotch Quick Dry in my fine line applicator using the large piece to ensure all the little pieces were placed properly. 3 hours, but totally worth it!  The photo mat is on pop dots so that it is about the same level as the paper straw border around it.
 The art journaling challenge hosted by Patter. I also chose to use it to complete one of the GloryArt Journaling challenges she hosts on her blog.  I've been reading them in my down time at homeschool co-op each week and taking notes, but this is the first time I was able to be creative with them.

 This was for the curvy element challenge. I LOVE it. It uses Amy Tan papers. I still have the journaling left to do. I think I'm going to gesso just to the right of the photo to give myself a toned down area to right and it be visible.  Roxy cannot just lay on the floor. She has to get blankets, hers, ours, it doesn't  matter, and then paw them and paw them maneuvering them until they are just so, before turning in a circle and laying her butt down. It's so funny to watch her.

My favorites from two weeks ago. This week I'm working on my yearly calendar swap. I'm itching to do a layout though. So hopefully, I'll finish it tomorrow and be able to do layouts over the weekend.  Wish me luck!

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Journal 52

 There is a Journal 52 group on facebook that does an art journal prompt each week of the year.  I found it last December and thought I'd try to play along and up my art journaling skills this year.  Of course, I totally suck at any challenge that has a weekly deadline. You know that crazy thing called life always gets in my way!  So I did the first 3 weeks and almost 4 in good time.  I spent May playing a bit and trying to catch up on some of the prompts

Week 4 Prompt: silhouette

 Week 5 Prompt: Television

Week 8 Prompt: Aromatherapy  Lilacs were in bloom when I was doing this one.

Week 10 Prompt: Coloring Book
I used a stencil to draw the birds and bee. 

Week 13 Prompt: Spring Clean
Cleaning out the cobwebs of my mind.
Liking the vibrant color on this one.

Week 21: Top Ten List
Ok, so I did a huge list. But you have to go where the vision takes you.
They're on week 23 so I still have quite a few to catch up on. If you like art journaling, check it out.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

2015 Layouts to share

My little reminder of life happenings to our family (this blog) has been severely neglected. I'd say it is a bad thing, but part of me is grateful as the whole moving in to a house that isn't refurbished yet and waiting until your other house sells to start is kind of - disheartening.  The OH house sold at the end of March. We just started ripping dd's room to the studs.  I'd love it finished by July 31st, but honestly if it gets finished by October I'll be thrilled. We just aren't full of peppy energy in our old age. Where we once would work all day long, now it's an hour or two and then a break time which is an hour or two. 

Well, the house mess does mean that I haven't had a lot of crafty time. But that's starting to change around.  I thought I'd share my layouts for this year.  They are not the best work, but they are finished.  Sometimes we take what we can get.  These are all quick and easy pages.

January through April:

This was all the scraps from a BoBunny MammaPapparazzi collection.  I was thrilled to get another page out of it.  And I think, Steph took this photo of us. I think it's cute.

 Uncle Jeff changed his name to Grandpa, a fairly big milestone.

 An old fancy pants design set that I was saving my leftover pieces just for this layout. An Amy Tan puffy sticker too. I need more puffy stickers!!

 Senior Discount!!! on groceries, hubs was very upset over getting this. I told him those punk kids are getting younger and younger, and I left off that his hair is getting grayer and grayer.

My May Layouts: 
   I had no idea how to use this overlay from that old Fancy Pants Design set, but wanted to finish the set off.  It's definitely not my favorite layout, but.... oh, well.

I actually like this one quite a bit, more because of the story.  Loved using all the stamps too.

I actually like this one quite a bit as well. It's all about how our dog thinks she is our 3rd child and her funny child-like antics.
Next up, my art journal pages.