Thursday, November 20, 2014

Caring for the Caregiver: Guest Post

Mama in the NowToday I'm guest posting over at Mama in the Now.  ToveMaren is a sweet Mama of 4 young boys who has a great parenting blog.  I love her style and her heart for living in the now! It's what I strive to do with my kids and while I have success and failure in this daily, it's nice to know other moms who are working hard for the same thing!

My post today is part of her series "Caring for the Caregiver".  I share a little bit about my struggle to find a community of moms where I really felt like I fit in and how I created my own in this giant city of mine.  It's transformed how I feel about living where I do and I hope it can inspire you if you are searching for ways of taking care of yourself as the Mama Caregiver for your family.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Project Life Catch-Up: Grace's Baby Album

Hi there! Welcome to Almond Place!

Many of you know how much I love Scrapbooking! I've been playing in this hobby since high school and I have changed and evolved as my life demands have changed.  I currently use Project Life by Becky Higgins as my method of documenting our family memories. 

There is currently a class going on at Big Picture Classes called "Catch Up with Project Life" and while I am not at all involved with that class, nor am I taking it, I've been inspired just by the title to get stuff done.

I am a chronological scrapbooker.  I don't always have to do things in order, but I do feel like I need to document something each month.  I've been trying to just let the stories inspire me, but I can't seem to let go of needing something each month.  

I've slowly been working through Grace's baby album.  I am so glad I snagged one of the Baby Girl kits before they were retired this past month.  I finally got her entire first year of photos placed into the album. Now, I need to finish placing all of the journaling cards and catch up  on some fill in images.

Here are a few of her pages.  It's been so nice to get this project nearly done. I'd say I put in about 4 hours over the course of several evenings in planning out the pages and getting everything in. 

Next up is journaling her first year and then starting on the second year.  My goal is to have her caught up in about 3 months.  

What about you?  Do you have any strategies to stay on top of your scrapbooking?  Do you have to do things chronologically or are you able to be a little more free with it? I'd love to hear your tips!

Monday, November 17, 2014

Keepsake Ornaments

Welcome to Almond Place!  I'm thrilled you could join me and some of my fellow blogger friends for our Holiday Blog Hop!  Be sure to stop by their blogs for some fantastic holiday posts!

One of my most favorite things at Christmas time is pulling out all of our ornaments.  Before I was married, I fell in love with pewter ornaments.  I was lucky to live in a  place that had 2 fairly established companies who made hand crafted pewter ornaments...Seagull & Amos pewter. I have been collecting them since 2000 when I had my very first Christmas tree as an adult.

I have added consistently to my collection each year.  They are so incredibly beautiful and I love that I have memories associated with each and every ornament.  When my kids were born, my mom had the "Baby's 1st Christmas" ones sent engraved.  On holiday in Canada, we pick up a couple of extras. 

I love the look of these ornaments on our tree.  I feel like it brings such a peaceful elegance to our Christmas tree.  I like things clean and simple and these ornaments are all of those things!  

Not long ago, I discovered two pewter shops here in the US....Lisa Leonard Designs and The Vintage Pearl.  They are both jewelers and have high quality craftsmanship in their products.  I own jewelry and ornaments from each company and love them equally!

Our 2014 Family Ornament
A few years ago, I decided that I would purchase a family ornament as well as an ornament for each kiddo.  I try to find something sweet that they will be able to take with them when they fly the coop for their own homes.  This will be a small token to get them started and if they don't want them?  Well, they will still be a part of my collection and they will hang on my tree!

This year, I ordered our family ornament from Lisa Leonard and the kids' keepsakes from Amos Pewter.  I think they all turned out beautifully!  This is just a simple and relatively inexpensive way to help commemorate our time together as a family and I hope it helps evoke many happy memories in my kids when they are grownups.

Each child will receive this ornament with their name and the year engraved.

So how about you?  Do you do anything special like this for your kids?  Do you have a certain style of ornaments that you gravitate to?  I'd love to hear your ideas!

Be sure to stop in on the other holiday blogs!  Thanks for popping into Almond Place today!