Saturday, January 31, 2009

These Hands



These hands are priceless.

These hands can:
make an awesome gourmet dinner with anything and nothing
make a bump stop hurting by putting some water on it
wipe away tears and make it all better
sew a masterpiece outfit out of a few scraps
knit beautiful blankes that keep us all cozy and warm on cold winter days
crochet beautiful sweaters that totally hip and cool
These hands are so very loved and appreciated.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Today Is My Birthday.... welll

........ it was on January 28, but lets just pretend I'm posting on my birthday. I really really wanted to but I had such a crazy choc-full busy day at work, that I was exhausted by the time I got home. In the evening, my mother made me my most favorite dinner ever... a very simple, chicken cutlet parmigiana, peas and mushrooms (just the way my mom makes it), mashed potatoes sprinkled with paprika, and a tossed salad with oil and vinegar! Talk about yum...


I've forgotten what a really good dinner tastes like since I've moved out.. Laugh.


My birthday present this year is a trip to Punta Cana, Dominican Republic. I'm sooooo excited. It's been eight years since Domenic and I have been away. Yes. We're taking the kids. Of course we're taking the kids. They're going to so love the sun, the sand, the beach, the pool. I can't wait to watch them have fun. It'll be a really nice break from all the cold, slush, and snow. Oh look at some of the heaven I'll be visiting soon. See ya March 5 'ol beautiful land of sunshine...!! Laugh.




Right now at 38 I:


am healthy and happy.
love being back at work.
can't wait for our first family vacation.
am dreading trying on bathing suits!
love my computer.
excited to get two scrapbooking packages in the mail soon.
have to cut my long ass hair.
want to stop biting my nails.
REALLY want a SLR camera.
an addicted to diet soda.
can't wait for Elisa to get outta diapers.
am sad I have to leave the kids with a baby sitter.
am happy I have an awesome baby sitter.
love life.
love my kids.
love my husband.

Life is good.


Francesca

Sunday, January 25, 2009

'You Fit Into Me' - Catalyst #46

Here's this weeks catalyst #46, "What is your favorite poem? Why?"

My favorite poem ever, is this one by Margaret Atwood:

You Fit Into Me

You fit into me
Like a hook into an eye

A fish hook
An open eye

Whoa. Pretty profound, no?
It nearly knocked me off my feet the first time I read it back in my university days.
It's such a fabulous play on words. It's very simple, and perfect description of the duality of love. That is, love hurts.

Supplies: Making Memories (glitter stickers) (journaling stamp); Doodlebug Designs (beetle black chenille cardstock); American Crafts (red and white cardstock for scallop circle); Quick Kutz (puzzle die cut); 7 Gypsies (Fragile sticker); DMC (red floss)

Journaling reads:

"Eight years later...and we still fit. From day one there was a strong, sweet, instant connection between us. However, all love is fraught with its' share of heartache and conflict - somehow we have made it work".

Have a great night folks..

Francesca


Saturday, January 24, 2009

A Random Post

So I've been busy!

Getting used to this new schedule of mine is wearing me out.

I'll get used to it eventually.

But here's some fun stuff..

First, as you know I've been playing with the catalysts on Creative Therapy. And guess what? I actually won a rak. A gorgeous rak from Scrapbooking From the Inside Out. Take a look at it. I so can't wait to get it. Oh happy day - it's the first time I have ever won anything. ANYTHING. EVER. Wohoooo.



Anyway...

I found this website, Wordle.net - you basically pump in a bunch of words and it puts them all together into really neat formations. You can then scrap around it. Take a look below:

This one I'm going to use for Elisa and all her little doll friends. I've used all the names of her favorites and some adjectives, click on "go" and it generated this. So cool. You can change the fonts, the size, the layout, and you can even keep on clicking "randomize" until you like a particular layout. I could spend hours on this.





This one below: I'll be using for Xavier. I have a really gorgeous picture of him all wrapped up in his winter duds, looking all sombre and dreamy. I want to call it, "Dreaming of Summer". He's really hating the winter, and frankly I don't blame him, so am I.. it's already been a long hard one, and it ain't even half way over yet!

CHA is in California and I so wish I could be there. Check out the link for sneak peaks into what is to come in the scrapbooking world. I'm sooo envious of those that are going. I'd pay money to get to go... And I'll pay big bucks to get my hands on some of this from Sassafrass, "Hog Heaven", and "Anthem" lines. Check it out. And October Afternoon, "Cherry Hill". Oh to live in a paper heaven.

Xavier is sleeping over Max's house; Elisa and Domenic are sleeping; Samson is snoring away at my feet; the house is quiet and oh so warm; and I'm feeling really happy! Life is good. Life is great. Enjoy every single moment.

Have a peaceful night all..

Francesca

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Catalyst #45

Here is the catalyst #45 from Creative Therapy: "If you got to write a book/movie/song what would it be about?"





I would definitley write about growing up as a first generation Canadian from Italian immigrant parents. I'd write about the struggles of my parents trying to maintain a very strict Italian culture, yet at the same time trying to immerse myself into our Canadian culture.
I'd write about what is now called our Italo-Canadese dialect. A dialect that was once a Sicilian dialect that turned into half Sicilian-half English. For example, two-by-four, in Italo-Canadese is 'tuba-fora'. Funny strange thing that happened. It's no longer distinguishable as a genuine Sicilian dialect.
I'd write about the traditional foods we grew up with, how to make home-made tomato sauce, smoked sausages, and sun dried tomatoes!
I'd write about Italy, a land I really felt like I knew, that I identified with, and loved, but had never visited. I'd write about how for many years when someone asked me what nationality I was I'd say, Italian, when in fact I was Canadian of Italian descent. I'd write about this for my kids and their kids because by the time they grow up most of our Italian heritage will be lost if not maintained, nurtured, and passed on.
This is an ode to my Italian heritage.
Francesca

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Catalyst #44

I thought this was what I always wanted to do. Just stay home with my kids. I tried it out for two years when it just struck me that I really did want to go back to work after all. I was missing my career. Believe it or not. I had two beautiful years with my kids and I enjoyed it as much as they did. As tough as it was having to leave them with a sitter that first day, I knew going back to work was the right decision, for all of us. The interaction with other kids, and new people is good for them. And the iteraction with adults and getting out of the house is REALLY good for me too! I didn't realise how much I'd missed working until I got back. Being gone for two years is a long time, but the people were still the same (some new and some gone), nothing really did change. I'd thought I'd forgotten a lot but when I got into it I was working on auto-pilot. It just all came back to me just like riding a bike. You're a little rusty at first but once you get going it's full speed ahead. So, anyway, this is my response to Creative Therapy's catalyst #44, "What’s something about the way you live your life that doesn’t align with who you are (or wish you were)?"







Supplies: American Crafts Thickers, Heidi Swapp jumbo crystal brad, 7 Gypsey's tag, Hambly transparency, Anna Maria Horner fabric, acrylic paint, female chipboard (not sure!), and Ranger Alcohol Ink (gold)

I'm keeping these catalysts in a small book and am keeping them simple so I can manage to complete them. Waiting for the next one to come up this Sunday!

Thanks for looking...

Francesca

Friday, January 9, 2009

The Party is Over! Or, is it?

I have sort of been missing in action these past few days, so to speak.
I've gone back to work.
Yup...
After a very long maternity leave.
Here in good 'ol Canada we get a year of maternity leave and I tacked on an additional year leave.. so needless to say, going back was hard.
Very hard.
Not only for me but for the kids too.
Elisa didn't surprise me too much, I figured she'd cope well.
It was my 5 year old son who took it hard.
By late afternoon when I still hadn't showed up to pick him up, he cried himself silly, and then fell asleep on the couch.
That first morning, I cried ALL the way to work.
I felt guilt ridden that I had left my children, my precious cargo, the two things that I loved most on this planet, with literally a stranger.
OK, I know everyone does it. Everyone has a sitter. Everyone has to go to work.
It didn't matter what I told myself.
I was a mess all day.
I'm feeling much better about it today.
The kids are a heck of a lot more comfortable with their sitter.
Sweet older Italian couple, husband and wife team, Concetta and Angelo.
They live around the corner from us, and closer to Xaviers school than we do, not to mention they're super sweet and great with the kids.
For some reason I still feel guilty for having enjoyed myself away from the kids.
Back in my position where I feel in control.
In a place where I can excercise my brain.
And heck, speak to adults about something besides, 'what sports your kids are signed up for', or 'what ballet class', or complain about how many stinky diapers you've had to change.
It was adult talk.
Joking.
Seeing my pals.
Working on my computer without my kids tugging at my pant legs.
Eating lunch, and not having to worry about anyone else's lunch (this one's a big one for me folks).
I could leave all the worrying to Concetta.
She could worry about the kids for me.
I'd deal with the kids when I'd get home.
Life sure is different at 'work'.
You're head is in a different space when you're at home with kids, than it is when you're at work with adults.
I'm glad I went back.
I may just have saved my sanity afterall.

This will definitely be a scrapped 'moment' in my life.

Any words of advice from other working moms?
Do you feel the 'guilt' thing too?
Why must women's lives be so complicated?

Francesca

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Catalyst Forty-Three

"Tell us about a BIG dream you want to achieve (aim high!)"


Here is my page in response to the Creative Therapy catalyst number Forty-Three:




psssst.: I got the date of the photo wrong. It should be June 1996 when I received my B.Ed., NOT 2006!


I used up some Sassafrass pp for the clouds... and lots of distress stickles to accents the details. With a jumbo brad from Heidi Swapp. Alpha stickers are Making Memories. And the title alphas are American Crafts Thickers.


I've included my University's motto by my photo (Making Memories shimmer alphas),
"Velut Arbor Aevo", may it grow as a tree through the ages - it is an adaptation of Horace's lines, "crecit occulto velut arbo aevo fama Marcelli" Odes I.12, line 45.

I've used a 6" x 8" bound album for my pages that I create around the catalysts. I'm loving doing these 'cause later in life it'll give my kids an awesome glimps into the person their mother was! This is my way of including myself in my scrapbooking.

I've always loved going to school. My university experience was absolutely awesome. I never enjoyed myself more than when I was in a lecture room, listening to a renowned professor lecture on one of my favorite subjects. Love it. It's no surprise to anyone in my family or friends that I went on to University to complete my Bachelor of Arts, and then eventually my Bachelor of Education.

I've always dreamed of getting my Masters in Education, so I can eventually complete my Ph.D. This is my dream, well, more of a goal. I'm not ready to start it yet, but I plan to start by 2011. I need my kids to be a little older and not so dependent on mom for EVERYTHING.

Every year for the past three years, I always get the application to apply. I hang on to it as a reminder of what I need to do. And I want it ready and handy for when I am ready.

Now that I work for the University of Toronto, there is no excuse for me not to do it. To make it even more enticing, I get a tuition waiver since I'm an employee of the University.

It certainly can't get any better than that!

Thanks to
Karen Grunberg for creating such an awesome site.

Check out the site, ask yourself some questions, create art around yourself, and share with the rest of us! It's really fun.

Francesca