Saturday, April 30, 2011

Whereabouts and such.

I could easily throw myself into typing a rather lengthy list of reasons why nothing seems to be going on here (perhaps that would answer some of the almost panicked e-mails that have been arriving in my inbox these last few days?) but that would be sufficiently boring, I am sure.

I can tell you that the headaches I seem to have are not friendly to a computer screen.  Not really friendly to much to be quite honest.

Then there are projects that I have been working on, that are very friendly to my headaches.  Projects that require not much thinking at all, repetitive actions, and lots of holding still, or being semi-still. 

There are also possible reasons/causes for these awesome headaches..  just a few theories: 

- allergies

- sinus issues (due to the above)

- sleep deficiencies

- children (reason for sleep deficiencies)

- old age (?)

- too much sugar

So following one of the possible theories, I, in a rash decision (according to Merrill), vacated my craft room to turn it into a bedroom for Ashley.  If you, or he, were here to experience what  a non-peaceful event bedtime was, you would have done the same thing.

Ashley and Peyton are not good roommates.

Well, that actually depends on who you ask.  They would say that they make fantastic roommates, I would have to disagree.  You see, Ashley has encouraged, cheered-on her younger sibling to ascend the ladder to the top bunk to “hang out” and “talk”.  I took that ladder away.  I took it far, far away, and then what does the older, influential sister do?  Why teach her younger sister how to scale the bed frame, using the windowsill, whereby to gain access to that upper bunk.  The look of triumph on that littlest girl’s face was magical.  The look on mine was pure annoyance, a sheer second of shared excitement, but mostly annoyance.

(Fantastic roommates!  If no one needed to sleep.)

Bedtime commences around here at 8:30.  They would usually fall asleep somewhere after the final beating, or to people who go by actual “time”, roughly 10:30 pm.  Sometimes later, after more beatings, and various threats.

Bedtime for me, took on an entirely different name.

Thus, the move.



Ashley does love her new room, I have somewhat enjoyed putting it together.  I only wish that the weather would cooperate so I could finish painting a shelf to help rid the floor of it’s newly inherited mess.

Bedtime, is back to being bedtime in my book.


Meanwhile, I am homeless.

My stuff, the whole lot of it, sits in one of the unfinished rooms in the basement, waiting for me to feel inspired as to what to do with it.

Merrill seems to think that I should take the large room in the basement.

(Well, that is only after the thought that I was too “rash” and should not have given up my room in the first place, but remember, *he was not present for the hellish routine of bedtime on the most hellish of nights*.  “Rash”, I think not, I have been pondering the move for quite some time now.)

Now back to that room in the basement.  It is a very nice, large space, with sucky morgue-ish lighting.  It also has a wall color on one one (thank heavens) that resembles a place where bright orange outdoor basketballs have been massacred.

Can I be creative in a poorly-lit basketball murder scene?

(Quite a coincidence how the two of those details go hand in hand..)

No, I can not!

I need a color that inspires, lighting that makes me feel alive!

So maybe, once I feel better, I will want to paint, and move on in…

Meanwhile, I am homeless.

Oh, and I have a headache now.

In the genes.

Quilting, the love of it, the ability to do it, is in my genes..  I am sure.

I grew up helping and watching (mostly) my mom and grandma, my great aunts even, while they quilted.  Laying underneath the quilt on the frames, watching how fast they would work, learning how to roll it, and get a good, tight roll.  From that point on, I have loved doing it. 

I made my first quilt when I was twelve years old.  I used a pile of scraps that my grandma gave me.  They consisted of everything from polyester knits to 100% cottons.  Quite the mix for a pieced quilt.

I pieced it together using a re-furbished old Singer that had issues with it’s tension.  I didn’t use it much after, out of frustration mostly.  I think it’s still in my parents crawl space, but I really want to conquer it.  Like, bad.

I bound my funky little pieced quilt by hand as I sat with my grandma, and as my mom and brothers shoveled snow off of her roof.  It was an exciting winter.  I am sure, if I tried, I could find that picture..

If I really wanted to, I could dig in my cedar chest, waaay down to the bottom and un-earth that first little quilt of mine.  Then you could see just how far I have come.

I have made many quilt since then.  I like to think of it as our storage of warmth in case we lose power for an extended period of time.  I have no blanket shortage here.

Here’s the latest:

    quilt 033

I have to admit, I have had this material for more than two years.  I bought it when I heard that my sister-in-law was having a girl.  I saw it, and fell in love with it, thought it would make a darling quilt for a baby girl.  Then, she posted her nursery on her blog, and there was the same fabric.  Needless to say, since she is also an amazing quilter, I gave up on that.  So it has sat.  Then I decided to do something about it and just do it!

(Maybe if I have another baby girl..  someday.)

(Or maybe I will just hold on to it for a grandbaby..)

(Do you know my husband?)

quilt 006

I got really giddy about making my own bias tape.  Grandma left behind her own little pattern for making the fun stuff, but I also found helps on the internet.  There are great resources out there.  My favorite one for pictorial help is here and the technical one is here.

quilt 001

(I am not so proficient in math, but that technical one is awesome, I found the most help there.)

It was fun making it.  I am not going to lie, I got a bit geeked-out about it.  But it matches my quilt perfectly and I love it!

quilt 011

I already have another one in the works, ready and waiting..  if the weather stays the way it has, slightly warm, rainy, snowy, warmer, windy, snowy..  it will be perfect weather to be snuggled-up inside working on another one. 

quilt 018

Monday, April 25, 2011

Thinking Summertime..

Even though the weather forecast is talking rain, and threatening snow, Carina Gardner has me thinking summer.

cg_freshpickedsummer_mindypitcher copy

(Click on image for list of full credits.)

All this lovely floral is from Carina’s newest release, “Fresh Picked – Summer”.

I love the gentle feel of it, but there are some fun vibrant colors!  Perfect to showcase this pic of Ashley.  (One of my favs.)

I’ve been hunting around for Carina’s fabrics and patterns too.  She is certainly a woman who inspires!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Paper Kiwi

I recently got a book printed with Paper Kiwi.  They are local (to me), just a couple of hours down the road. 
april 009
Let me tell you a little about my experience:
I created my book in Photoshop Elements, saved the files as jpegs and uploaded them into their software (that you must download) dragging them into place (super easy).  You can create your book using their software too.
I loved how you were able to select your style of book, how it let you preview exactly how it would look while you were building it (to see how pages would merge together and such), and I loved how easy it was to add pages! 
The final step was to proof just how the book would look, catch any mistakes before you click on that final submit button.
I ordered my book late Tuesday night and had it, in my hands on Saturday afternoon. (!!)  Can you say fast?
I chose a hard-bound cover, in color, and was amazed at what I saw.  It is gorgeous!  The colors were a little darker than I saw on my monitor, but my monitor isn’t calibrated either.  That would be one detail I would have to remember for next time, to amp that up a little bit.
The first two pages were perfect, great weight of paper, colors vibrant (but still a little dark), and then the pages were sideways. 
I had to giggle.
Then I notified customer service via e-mail, and they responded later that evening.
(Fantastic customer service!!)
They informed me that they would begin re-printing my book first thing Monday.  And they did.
(Awesome customer service!)
A week later, my corrected book arrived, all things in their proper order!
april 010
My experience was amazing. 
I had read other reviews about slow software, but I didn’t experience any of that as I didn’t use their software to create my book. 
Comparing it to my Shutterfly book, I would have to give Paper Kiwi the upper hand.  The cover is thicker, more substantial, the pages seem to be a little thicker to me.
I definitely plan on using their services in the future. 
(Did I mention that their customer service was incredible?)
Love my book!
**My review and opinion of this company and it’s services were compensated with a free 8x8 printed book.  Just sayin’.*

Monday, April 18, 2011

Welcoming a new designer.

Jodie Lee is a new designer to Jessica Sprague.  

Her creations are amazing!  I was lucky enough to get to play with some of her designs in the last class I took, and fell in love.

Today is her debut.  She has some shabby, amazing, gorgeous products out today.  Go check them out!

These are her Vintage Paper Textures, perfect for this layout.

jl_oldpapertextures_mindypitcher copy

(Click on layout for full credits.)

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

The happiest puke-face in the world.

I got my due punishment for taking Ashley to lunch at McDonald’s (or as I have so appropriately re-named them “Yak-Donald’s”) yesterday.  You see, there were basically no groceries in our little house.  I fully intended on procuring some while Ashley was at kindergarten (because only one child makes that errand MUCH more enjoyable), but instead, got caught up at Costco, two fabric stores and one thrift store.  Oh, and a book store.  No groceries were purchased (other treasures were), unless you can count the three bricks of Tillamook colby jack I bought at Costco a meal.

So we picked up Ashley at school, and went to that “one place” for lunch.

(It helps to go shopping with a full stomach.  I know, I have had experience shopping with an empty one.  I almost bought a cake at Sam’s club because I skipped lunch one time.)

We had a great lunch, and even greater lunch conversation.

“Mom, I have to tell you something, and I don’t know how I am going to tell you this…”

“Just tell me.”

“But it is something serious and I am not sure how you are going to take it.”

“How about telling me, and seeing how I take it.”


(Deep breath followed by a sigh.”

“You know that kid from PBS kids, Calliou?”

“Um, yeah.”

(I am thinking about that annoying kid.  The show I dislike SO much because he is ALWAYS whining about something…  why did I ever buy that DVD?!?)

“Well mom, he’s bald.”

I’m laughing.

“Seriously mom.  He has NO HAIR.”

“Well (more laughing) that is usually how one looks when they are bald.”

Holy crack me up.

Then, while shopping, she brought up an un-finished conversation that started during sacrament meeting. 

“Mom, does your middle finger really mean a bad word?”

(See why it was left unfinished during sacrament meeting?  I seriously prayed that she would forget entirely about it.  That seemed like an appropriate thing to do during sacrament meeting, pray, I mean.)


“What bad word is it?”

“I will not say it.”

“Why not?!  Tell me!!”

“No.  It is the worst word ever.  The finger is an obscene gesture, it is basically telling someone: ‘Forget You”, and that just isn’t nice, we don’t want to forget people.”

“So we shouldn’t show people our middle finger?”


Later on, she got a paper cut.  The only reason why I knew was because she was trying to swing (in the nanosecond of actual spring weather we had yesterday..) with a Kleenex wrapped around her middle finger.

I asked if she wanted me to put a band aid on it.

“Yes.  I am tired of holding my bad word finger.”

See, funny.

But now I get to the follow-up to our little trip to “Yak-Donald’s”…

I get her up to get ready this morning.  She doesn’t feel good and proceeds to throw up.  (I am blaming “Yak-Donald’s only because the food is gross and the place is a breeding grounds for all sorts of communicable diseases.) 

But get this:

She is the happiest, cutest, sweetest puker in the whole world.

(Of this I am completely sure.)

“I love you mommy.”  she said after I wiped her face.

“Thank you mommy, I love you.”  she said in between heaves while I held her hair out of her face while it was in the toilet.

“I love you mommy.”  she said again while I pulled it into a ponytail while she threw-up in the barf bowl.

And after every session of heaving, there would be a little, weak smile on her sweet face.  I wouldn’t be smiling if I were barfing the day away.  I could learn something from this kid.

Later on, after a bubble bath in my tub, she thanked me again.

“I love you mom.  I am sorry for giving you attitude and not being nice or making good choices, and you love me anyway.”

That is my job.  To love her and take care of her no matter what, and sometimes she gets it.

She really is the sweetest, happiest, cutest puke-face ever.  I am glad she is done puking though.


I used to babysit this girl, and now, I am taking her senior pictures?!
Thank you for making me feel old..
(There were other moments of that this past week, me feeling old and all..)
But what can I say, I love her!
The weather did not want to cooperate with our desires whatsoever, so we made do, at an indoor-ish location, which had great light, I might add..
jaycie_001_sharp&burnjaycie_041_sharp&burn jaycie_004_soft jaycie_005_bold_b&w  jaycie_012_sharp jaycie_019_sharp&burn jaycie_006_softjaycie_021_sharp jaycie_026_soft jaycie_028_sharp&burn  jaycie_035_sharp&burnjaycie_032_soft jaycie_033_sharp&burn  jaycie_029_bold_b&w jaycie_043_soft

hello spring!!!

well, at least i think it is…


i had to make myself a reminder of what season it is supposed to be, last week, while it was snowing.

it has done it’s job sufficiently, for those who are literate in this house.

pretty cheerful, eh?


i used crystal wilkerson’s june 2009 papers to make this, along with my trimmer, scoring board (freaking love that thing), twine, gluedots, scissors, my scalloped border punch, and some ribbon.

april14 018

as for the fonts:  lobster on the banner, bebas on the little “hello” banner.

as for the pom-pom garland…

that was some inspiration gained from watching studio 5 (a local lifestyle show) and a segment from diy dish

styrofoam, fun yarn, twine, and a yarn needle, and there you have it!

Monday, April 11, 2011

candy, candy!

this week’s layout comes courtesy of cosmo cricket’s latest line of “garden variety”.  my layout features paper and elements (aka “candy” to the cosmos).

love the fresh-picked feel it has to it, makes me want to go live on a farm.

(i tell merrill that is the plan if something were ever to happen to him.  pack up the girls and head to the rural i tell you..)

tangent:  i realize, as i post this, that i took this picture on our anniversary..  kind of funny to see just what has happened in 11 years..

CC_garden_variety_candycandy_mindypitcher copy

(click on layout for full list of credits.)

Friday, April 8, 2011

Parental Supervision

It is spring break around here.

(Don’t let the un-springlike weather fool you.  We just reside in Utah, that’s all.)

So what does a momma who rarely gets the chance to sleep in do on spring break?

Sleep in!

There is a slight hazard in that though.

The smallish children.

The things they can do while mother hen is sleeping in…

Take for example our first day of spring break:

The older two were having a sleep over with grandma, Peyton was my only charge.  She wakes up at the butt crack of dawn regardless of what day it is, vacations are not part of her little mindset as of yet.

(I say as of yet, because one day, they will be, and they will be priceless to her!)

So Peyton rose with the sun, needing her Trix and chocolate milk.  I got up, groggily, got the cereal and milk for her, turned on PBS kids (Curious George to be exact), and dragged myself back to bed, hoping for a few more minutes of sleeeeep.

I woke up a little after 8.  It was all too quiet.  I thought to myself: “Self.  When things are this quiet, something is a muck.  You should get your lazy self out of bed and go see about that little one.”

But as soon as my inner monologue ended, that sweet, most darling three year old came into my room, skipping into my room, and climbed into bed with me.  I kept my eyes closed, hoping that that little sprite would want to snuggle with me for a minute.  As she cozied-up to me underneath my down comforter, she said, “Mommy..  I got an owie on my face.”

(But when she says “face” it sounds more like “bace”.  Those three year-olds and that “f” sound..)

As I opened my eyes is slight alarm (knew I should have checked on her!!) and turned to see her face, this is what I saw:

 april 012

Scary and funny all at once..  I know.

But there were no real “owies” underneath. 

Upon further investigation, I found this:

april 008

But the smart kid threw away all of the garbage! 

Guess I won’t be buying the character band aids for a while.

We’ll stick to plain old boring skin color.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Dear momma,

I learned a lesson yesterday while watching “The Brady Bunch” with my bunch.

You should have given me a little sister.

(It would have been helpful if you had named her Cindy, but that probably would have caused more than a few moments of confusion, as Cindy and Mindy sound a little too alike.)

You see, Marsha (Marsha!  Marshaaaa!!) had a diary in this particular episode, she wrote incessantly about Desi Arnaz Jr. in it. 

(She was crushing on him just a little.)

Then, while collecting items for Goodwill, innocent little sis Cindy, gave away Marsha’s diary, thinking it was just some random old book.

You’ll never guess what happened next mom…  well, after Marsha freaked out, and gave little Cindy the silent treatment.  (Of course, because what else does one do when their little sister has wronged them in such a way?)

The family took every chance they could to find that old diary.  But guess who had it mom?

Desi Arnaz Jr.!!!


He returned it to Marsha, and gave her a little peck on the cheek, after saying some flattering things.

(Well, she did about him first.  He was the best thing since Captain Kangaroo in her life.)

She didn’t wash her cheek for a week (or more, I am not sure).

So mom, you see what my life could have been like?  Who did I write about in my diary?  DO you remember?  I know the New Kids were in there, but mostly, Patrick Swayze.  (Doodled hearts should be surrounding that.)  Only during the Johnny Castle phase, of course. 

Do you see how a little sister would have changed my life?!

SHE would have donated my diary to Goodwill, and Patrick Swayze would have found it..

I am sure of this mom.

I would have not washed my cheek for a week (or more I am not sure), had he pecked me there.

But oh well.  I guess life really didn’t turn out that badly.

I think I forgive you for the no little sister thing.

Love Minder

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

(Insert sappy title here.)

Another year has rolled around in the timeline of the Merrill and Mindy Pitcher franchise.

We celebrated 11 years of marriage yesterday.


What I love about our relationship, like, love a lot, is that we don’t necessarily have to do anything really big for our anniversary.  I wouldn’t complain if we did, but I like that we just sit back and enjoy it.

Most years, Merrill has been too busy with work to really do anything anyway, but with the girls being bigger, we like to involve them now too.

Some of the highlights from our day yesterday:

- Papa John’s for dinner.

- Listening to music, playing and some dancing.

- Lots of reminiscing.

- Making treats.

- U-Gluing our rug to the floor.  (Nail-biting excitement I tell you.)

- Bribing Merrill to take a few pictures with me.  (For some reason he wasn’t as willing or happy about it as he was 11 years ago..)

- Getting the kids to bed a watching “Deadliest Catch”.

- Ending the day with some sparkling cider.

While it wasn’t anything terribly big or fancy, it was time together.  That is just what I love, being with him, no matter what we do…  and I loved every minute of it!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011



We love them.

(Especially with our taco soup.)

But yesterday, while enjoying above-mentioned soup, Ashley and I happened upon this cute find.


So glad we didn’t crunch it right away.

Terrific Tuesday!

(I am trying hard to crank out creative post titles and sucking adequately at it.)
Today is not only “Template Tuesday” but it is also my 11th wedding anniversary.
Not only that..  but I finally had time to complete templates from not only LAST Tuesday, but today as well..
(For full credits, please click on the layout.)
notquitegoodbye_mindypitcher copy
laugh_mindypitcher copy
And the fun news doesn’t end there my friends!!
I was featured at CK’s blog.  Pretty close to that place I have been dreaming of being featured at for years….
Pretty terrific for this Tuesday if I do say so myself.

Something fun to do with the girls.

I saw something a while ago on the good old tee vee (T.V.) that I was dying to try out with my girlie-girls.
march 029
Glitter toes!
I went and purchased all necessary items (like the “stickey” coat and more glitter, because one can NEVER have enough microfine glitter..) clear back in January and had intentions (good ones too) to do them before Valentine’s Day.
But, well, SOMEONE decided to be born the day before Valentine’s a few years ago, which complicates such plans when I am busily baking cakes, cookies, making Valentine’s boxes, making birthday and Valentine’s gifts, and other such junk..
So no glitter toes were debuted then.
The good intentions (which pave the road to hell, so I’ve heard) carried through the month of March, when I had visions of green glitter toes just in time for St. Patrick’s day.
Needless to say, that didn’t happen either.
But, I finally got around to it.
One of those kind of nights, when Merrill gets to go back to work, after being with us for a whopping 2 hours, so we girls were left to our own devices so entertain ourselves.
Let me tell you a few things that might prove to be a tad helpful if you so decide to attempt glitter toes yourself:
- You should not include a sugary treat in the process of doing glitter toes.  You might think it a genius bribe to get someone to stay in one spot for the multi-step jobber, but it doesn’t.  IT DOESN’T HELP AT ALL.  I tried root beer floats.  (I am addicted after all..) Didn’t help!  The sugar only adds to the glittery excited energy.  Energy motivates one to wiggle.  Sugar increases this motivation.  A lot. 
- It would also be well-advised to do these on a nice day (nice meaning one of those rare days when it is really “spring-like”, not “Utah spring-like”) outside.
(Read between the above lines.  “Utah Spring” would mean extreme wind, inches of rain, thunder, lightening, and snow.  Sometimes at the same time.)
- If you can’t do it outside, do it in the bathroom, with the door shut, and in the tub or sink. 
- Be prepared to vacuum. 
- Have lots of Q-Tips and polish remover handy.
- Be patient.
(You might want to pray.)
So the necessary items to do this shiny/fun/messy technique are as follows:
april 006
- “Stickey” base coat.  I went to my local beauty supply and bought mine for around $8. 
- Microfine glitter in whatever color you desire.  (I used Martha Stewart.  40% off Michael’s coupon anyone?)
- A plush make-up brush (that you don’t plan on ever using again, or a wide, soft paint brush.
- Clear top coat.
- A blow-dryer.
(Or patience for the drying time can be used instead.)
- And then there’s the aforementioned polish remover, and Q-Tips, and patience, and prayer.
You want to make sure that you start with clean and trimmed toenails.  I placed my girls’ feet on top of a piece of cardstock, to catch the glitter.  (Not that it did any good for keeping it off the floor or anything..)  Apply a coat of “stickey” on all toes, then sprinkle on a good amount of your glitter on to each toe nail.  Then you want to press the glitter into the “stickey”.  Gently brush the excess glitter off of each toe.  Now, you can either be totally patient, and wait for this to dry, or you can bust out that blow dryer, with the person’s feet smartly placed in, I dunno, say, a bathtub, to try to help in containing the glitter.
march 012 march 015
(See how the out of doors would be helpful here?)
After drying, apply another coat of “stickey” and glitter, pressing, brushing, and drying again.
Repeat this process until your toes are adequately sparkly for your personal taste. 
Then, after they are dry, again, apply a clear top coat to seal in all the glitter.  They will not exactly be smooth, they will be sparkly, but not smooth.  Apply clear top coat, drying between coats,  until you are happy with the gloss.
Use the Q-Tips and remover to clean up the skin around the toes.
march 021
Rinse off with cold water.  I like to use Ulta’s shower smoothie.  It takes off what you don’t want left on your skin, and leaves you soft and smelling yummy.
(It also helps remove permanent marker, ink, and gum, from skin and hair.  Sound like I have some experience in that area?)
Have fun cleaning up!
Glitter bubbles are beautiful but messy, just be warned.  They will totally mesmerize you, and then make you a little miffed at how messy they are.

Monday, April 4, 2011

(Title Goes Here.)

How many variations of a Monday greeting can one possibly come up with?  This is a new list I can start, I guess.

But anywhooo..

Here’s a few new layouts for your enjoyment. 

(Click on layout for full credits.)

First up, decorative bookplates – set 2 from Splendid Fiins:

sf_bookplates2_mindypitcher copy

Then there’s these GORGEOUS butterflies from Kitschy Digitals.

I had a moment..  while I was finishing up this first layout, I had another idea come to my mind for another layout…  I can’t decide which one I love more.

kd_jeweledbutterflies_mindypitcher copy kd_jeweledbutterflies_oneofakind_mindypitcher copy 

And then there’s some good old fun, just for fun’s sake from Creativity by Crystal…

cw_july09_sunshine_mindypitcher copy

I know that my week will have a fabulous start, hope yours does too!

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Ogden Temple

The temple nearest us is closing for renovations.  There will be an entire re-do of the exterior and interior.  There will also be a similar job done to the tabernacle located next door.
I grew up going to this tabernacle for Stake Conferences and other meetings. 
I also did baptisms in this temple as a youth, and went through this temple for my first time as an adult.  I have been here countless times, have seen sealings here, been with family.  My mom and dad were sealed here.
There have been many special experiences here..  so while it won’t be the same, it will be.  We look forward to all the exciting changes to come!
My brother and his wife were also sealed here, and they realized that they did not have any pictures of them at this special place.  So we figured we’d better get some before it is not the temple they knew.
ogden_temple_01 ogden_temple_02_b&w ogden_temple_05 copy ogden_temple_08_b&w ogden_temple_12 ogden_temple_13_b&w ogden_temple_19 ogden_temple_21_b&w ogden_temple_22_b&w ogden_temple_23 ogden_temple_25
(I got some of my girls too, don’t worry..)