Tuesday, December 29, 2009

it's Dana's special day!

Happy 5th birthday today to my niece, Dana! She lives in Philadelphia, PA.

We wish you a day full of FUN & GOOD TIMES, Dana! :-)

Aunt Susan, Uncle Sal, Buddy & Aruba

Monday, December 28, 2009

Christmas fun

Hey there ... hope your holiday was fun!

Buddy & Aruba were anxiously awaiting Sal's arrival home from work so that we could get the long holiday weekend underway (so cute!):

Sal and I kicked-off the holiday weekend with a Christmas Eve get-together hosted by his Mom ... lots of festivity and good food! ... here are some scenes from our visit:

Sal enjoying time with his Mom & her sweet little pup, Noel:

Sal and Mom Lepore cooking up a traditional Italian Christmas meal (pasta, of course!):

It was a full house!:from left to right, back row: Angie (Tricia's daughter, age 13), Sal, Jonathan (Tricia's son, age 18), Ralph
L to R, middle row: Tim (Patricia's son, age 12), Mom Lepore with Noel, Patricia, Deborah (holding Rebecca, Mark's daughter, age 3), Jen, Mark, Carolyn (family friend)
L to R, front row: Marisa (Patricia's daughter, age 9), Leah (Mark's daughter, age 9), Sarah (Mark's daughter, age 6)

Sal and his brother Mark enjoying a moment together:

My niece Rebecca playing with her favorite toy:

Sal and his sister Deborah, just hangin':

Mom Lepore with one of her gifts ... a Snuggie (yes, it's a blanket ... with sleeves! LOL):

My nephew Tim modeling his COOL new shirt:

Later, Tim & I played MANY spirited games of Connect 4 (and he's so good at it!):

Meanwhile, Uncle Sal was helping Leah tune her new guitar (that's Sarah in the background):

The festivities and good food continued on Christmas! Our day was split between a holiday lunch at Patricia's (Sal's sister) and then a holiday dinner with my family.

This year, I made my own gift wrap, "recessionista"-style! It was a nod to my Dad, who did this one year with gifts when I was a kid. I got some brown paper bags from the grocery store and, of course, glammed them up using my scrapbooking stash. Because bling is my thing!

Each recipient's name was in red glitter ("garnet" by Martha Stewart), using alpha stamps from one of Lisa Bearnson's Kits-of-the-Month and a glue pad. Then I used a "Merry Christmas" stamp and gold glitter ("florentine gold", also by MS). To complete the look, I added snowflakes using 3 fab MS punches ... aspen snowflake, glacial snowflake, and alpine snowflake. For an even more diverse look among them, I covered each snowflake shape in a different variation of white glitter ... Diamond Stickles, Crystal Stickles, and MS "crystal" fine glitter, respectively. Everyone loved their package! :-)

And then I got a surprise of my own! ... Sal also did the brown-bag gift wrap thing for ME! I had to laugh. Take a look at my gift package, front & back:

He even used red letter stickers to label my package! (this will be of interest to my sb'ing pals ... he chose the Tinsel Thickers in red (cherry) foil chipboard - nice font!) So, can you picture Sal in Michaels choosing letters? ... too funny! ... whoa, he must love me! *wink* (and, yes, he gave me the leftover letters for my stash, LOL)

My sister, Terry, received some scented luxuries from Bath & Body Works:

Terry's husband, Heince, will be picking up a good read and a coffee at Barnes & Noble:

My Mom will be heading to Michaels for some new crafting goodies (she does crochet, cross-stitch, quilting & sews too!):

My Dad will be looking spiffy in his new shirts: And Buddy & Aruba always LOVE opening their gifts! ... wanna see? ...

It really WARMED my heart to see Buddy so healthy and active, our sweet angel! He & Aruba had such a fun time! :-)

Enjoy this final week of 2009,

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas Eve

It is the Eve of Christmas ...

... our suitcase is packed (which means the laundry is done! LOL)
... the gifts are wrapped
... and the John Denver & The Muppets: A Christmas Together CD is in the car, ready for our road trip (if you've never heard any songs from this album, go HERE for samples ... you're in for a real treat!)

... it's almost Christmas!

Wishing you comfort & joy,

Saturday, December 19, 2009

movie review

It has been a while since Sal & I went to the movies. I'm not much of a movie person; frankly, I think a lot of what hits theaters would leave me wanting those 2 hours of my life back.

Today though, a rarity ... there are 2 movies out simultaneously that we were interested in. I convinced Sal to see Up In The Air with me (thanks sweetheart!) when he really wanted to see Avatar (the 3-D version). But he'll see that soon (maybe tomorrow!). I'm gonna pass on Avatar, I'm not a sci-fi gal.

Anyway, UITA was very good. Not a movie I'd watch 10 times like, say, Working Girl or My Big Fat Greek Wedding. But the snappy dialogue and underlying "travel" theme were right up my alley. Sal thinks it was just the George Clooney eye-candy, LOL! It was cute to hear a couple of elderly women behind us saying how nice looking he is. Actually, I'm more interested in his Italian villa. *wink*

Hope you're enjoying the weekend. Only 6 days until Christmas, wow!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

HS + GM = :-)

So my fave scrapbooking designer, Heidi Swapp, recently announced that she'll be teaming up with the manufacturer of one of my fave sb'ing products, Glimmer Mist. Woo Hoo!

So far, they've released a sneak-peek of 4 new shades of the glimmery goodness, with fun names like Viva Pink, Silver Sugar, Black Magic & Electric Blue:
And there's more fun to come when everything is divulged in January. Can't wait to see what Ms. Heidi has designed for her fans!

By the way, we're getting drenched down here in SoFla ... a constant downpour Thursday evening, and it'll continue all of Friday ... flash flood warnings & power outages too. Whew!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

home for the holidays

All of us know how wonderful it feels to be home for the holidays, surrounded by family, friends, and love. But lonely, homeless animals in shelters don't have this joy.

This holiday, please consider adopting a new animal friend. Please, with THOUSANDS of lovable animals awaiting homes in shelters, don't patronize breeders or pet stores! Search this animal shelter database to find animals in need near you.

And although it's popular to think that an adopted animal makes a great gift, often this is not the case ... it results in many animals returning to shelter life. Instead, consider giving a
Pet Promise Certificate ... a "gift card", of sorts, that allows your gift recipient to choose when (and if) they are ready to rescue a new furry friend.

Rescued animals will return your love 1,000-fold!

On behalf of the animals, thank you,

Saturday, December 12, 2009

'tis the season, Florida style

Last night, Sal and I attended a unique holiday event, one with local flavor ... a boat parade!

About 50 boats, ranging from small vessels to lavish yachts, sailed down the Intracoastal Waterway from Boynton Beach, passing thru Delray Beach, and into Boca Raton. Each boat was decorated with holiday lights and other bits of holiday flair, like Christmas trees or menorahs ... and some boat owners dressed up as Santa and played holiday music ... fun!

We had a great vantage point in downtown Delray Beach ... we arrived early to stake out a good spot on the seawall, enjoying sandwiches for dinner as we waited for the boats to begin passing by. We had a great time ... this is definitely a new tradition for us each December!

So I'd love to know ... what holiday traditions are unique to your hometown? Shoot me an e-mail, or post a comment here for all to see.

Enjoy the weekend,

Friday, December 11, 2009

it's Ruth's special day!

Happy birthday today to my sister-in-law, Ruth! She lives in Philadelphia, PA.

We wish you a FUN day that's full of smiles, Ruth! :-)

Susan, Sal, Buddy & Aruba

Thursday, December 10, 2009

weather extremes

I realize that many of you living at a latitude north of me are in the midst of a blizzard right now (keep safe & warm!) ... but I just wanted to mention that we're having odd weather here in SoFla. I snapped a photo of our TV screen during our local Wednesday evening newscast:

Yes, that's right! It was a record 90 degrees (F) here yesterday ... in December! Weird stuff!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

gaga for glitter!

A footnote to yesterday's post ... you can probably tell that, as a scrapbooker, glitter is one of my go-to supplies. And Martha Stewart makes some of the prettiest glitter I've seen (aside from the signature colors of Doodlebug Designs' glitters).

My latest obsession is Martha's "tinsel" glitter. Have you seen this stuff??? Here's an enlarged view to show the detail and texture of it:

Whoa, right? I can't wait to play with it! A friend gave me a giftcard to a sb'ing store, so several YUMMY colors of this glittery goodness are now part of my stash. They're also available at Michael's (grab their 40% coupon out of the Sunday newspaper and head over there to see it in person!).

And it was too funny to see Martha "glittering" on The Jay Leno Show ... Jay couldn't have been less interested (LOL), but it was a fun segment. I'm loving her "glitter-by-number" painting concept! Go HERE for instructions and a demo video.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

coming soon to a mailbox near you

One of my favorite things about the holidays is doing my Christmas cards. That's odd to some, I know, because surely some of you see it as a "chore" ... but every year I love seeing the new holiday postage stamp designs, addressing the envelopes, and writing a couple of lines to friends & family who I don't get to see very often.

Right now, my cards are spread out all over (sorry Sal) to "dry" ... yes, drying, because I raided my scrapbook stash to add some special touches to plain drugstore cards {recessionista!} ... and I chose Star Dust Stickles (glitter glue) to bling-up the card's snowy scene. And if I do say so myself, it's pretty. So watch your mailbox! :-)

Thursday, December 3, 2009

catching up...

Hi there, here I am! Where have I been? Just kind of occupied with the stuff of life, you know how it goes. It's no excuse tho ... I need (want) to get back to blogging!

Hope you had a nice Thanksgiving holiday? Sal & Buddy & Aruba & I took a road trip to the Tampa Bay area and spent the weekend with our families. Had fun catching up with everyone ... and seeing Buddy all energetic and playful with "Grandma & Grandpa" (so THANKFUL for that!), and me being playful with nieces and nephews (I love to goof around with them).

Here's a sweet moment from the festivities ... Sal's Mom (Angela) with her little poodle, Noel. He was born in December, hence his name. Happy birthday, Noel! :-)

Enjoy the day,