Monday, December 31, 2012

Happy 2013

 This is my first canvas project.
I followed a blog post by Southern Belle Soul for my inspiration.
Do you all have the song from Rent in your head now?
525 thousand 600 minutes....
Sing with me.
How do you measure, measure a year.
It is one of our favorites. Sydnee especially.

Just some old magazines, vinyl letters from the school section at Walmart, Fiskars flower punch, and your favorite color acrylic paint.

Happy 2013!

P.S. Some of you have asked about the other two pics from the Garner Christmas Trifecta. Here they are:

Monday, December 24, 2012

Merry Christmas!

Wishing you peace, love, and pure joy!
 Merry Christmas & Happy New Year
Much love,

The Garner Family
Craig, Kim, Christian, Sydnee, and Ella
  {This is 1 of 3 photos: from the Garner Christmas Trifecta}

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Sharing Christmas Advent Calendar

I know I am posting this about 13 days late.  If you wanted to do a 12 days of Christmas, you still have time! Or maybe you can 'pin' it or put it on your to-do list for next year. I know I already have a list of things that are just going to have to wait until Christmas 2013. I did feel that this project or idea, was so important this year, that we are sharing Christmas with 3 of our loved ones.  For more details on creating this Advent Calendar, you can read my article for Fiskars here. Thanks to my friend Shannon, for sharing this idea last year. Since we live so far from all of our family, I knew this was something that I wanted to do for loved ones at Christmas.
This is how I make cards. Cardstock, patterned paper, embellishments, etc....all in a row. Assembly-line cardmaking. It goes quick and it works for me.
After I made my first set of 25 cards, I decided because of circumstances within our family that this needed to be shared with a few more people that could use some Christmas cheer. So I made another set using Cosmo Cricket's Jolly Days paper, chipboard, etc. I love the card pieces on the kraft cardstock. Mmmmmm my favorite color cardstock! Enjoy!
This post is sponsored by Fiskars.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012


I didn't take 12 photos today.
I only took 3.
So I was thinking I would try something a little different to celebrate.
Sydnee was upset because we really didn't celebrate anything today. I tried to think of something.
We could read 12 picture books.
Or we could eat 12 Peppermint Hershey Kisses.
We could run around the block 12 times.
She just wasn't going for any of my ideas.
I think this is the best idea of all.
My 12 favorite pictures of 2012.
Here they are:
One word: Skype.

Our first visitors in 2012.

Anniversary photo. 17 years.

Trying something new.

Going home to Iowa. What a quick week!

Lasting friendships. Through good times, and bad.

Frameworthy? Look close.

Family adventures.

Exploring Texas with favorite friends.

My mom and dad should be proud of this picture after putting up with our fighting in their home for 18 years. Now we are best friends.

This should have been our Christmas card photo. Ella's baptism.

Grandma & Craig. Such a tender mercy. Craig's travel schedule gave him the opportunity to go to England to see his Grandpa and Grandma. Unfortunately, his Grandpa passed away just a week before his scheduled trip. He was still able to spend a few days with his Grandma and all of his other family in England. This was a true blessing.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Christmas Ornaments

I have 2 new articles up on the Fiskars blog this weekend. I really enjoyed finally finishing the revamp of my grandma's cross stitch ornaments. My mom gave them to me a few years ago, and I really wanted to change them for my christmas tree, but didn't really have any ideas.
When the yarn wrapped wreath craze hit Pinterest, I knew what I would do with the frames. I love how they turned out and cannot wait to put them on my tree!

Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket
 I also created some new photo ornaments. I love to see photos on the Christmas tree. It really shows the passage of time and how my kids have changed. This year, I also had them write what was the top item on their wish list. I think as I am posting this, some have already changed their #1 priority Christmas wish. Kids!Photobucket Photobucket
If you would like more information on how to create these ornaments, you can check out the Fiskars website here and here.

This post is sponsored by Fiskars. 

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Winners! A Day Late.....

Grateful journals on their way to:

 meganklauer said...
Love this post Kim! I need to do this soon! Thank you for the inspiration.
November 15, 2012 9:07:00 PM CST
 Muriel said...
Ok, I'm officially a follower, not just a stalker. :)
November 15, 2012 10:21:00 AM CST

 Texas Boy + SLC Girl said...
Kim! You're always so inspiring!!!! Thanks for sharing all these thoughts! Congrats on all your posts!
November 15, 2012 12:23:00 AM CST
meganklauer, Muriel, and Texas Boy + SLC Girl send me an email with your address and I will get these in the mail!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

11 Random Things...& A 700th Post Giveaway!!

I was tagged by Shannon last month and thought I would write a few things that are pretty random about me.

1. I am in love with anything & everything pumpkin. It really should be a flavor/smell that is available all year long and not just in the Fall.
2. I don't like chocolate. But give me any other sugary candy: hot tamales, sour patch kids, Mike & Ike's, Twizzlers, licorice, etc. I likie!
3. I am always trying to improve my parenting skills. It seems I can never get things right. Parenting is hard. Every child is different. I have heard this a million times, and I still completely lose my patience on a daily basis.
4. I want to really learn to use my camera. I am so addicted to just using my iphone camera. It has been easy, and I have become lazy. I never bring the big camera. I am going to take it and get a tune up for it at a local camera store. Then I am going to quit being scared, and just use it more often.
5. With all the social media & technology we have to 'connect' with friends and family, why do I lately feel so 'disconnected'? I want to call people instead of text; write and send cards instead of email.
6. I don't have a middle name. I tried to use my maiden name for awhile as my middle name, but it just didn't feel right. Now I just use my given name & my last name.
7. I am pretty obsessed with reading blogs. I read several on a daily basis. This is one of my favorites and it made my day when this appeared on Megan's vlog a month or so ago:

8. I really wish I had the financial ability to have a creative someone come and decorate my house.
9. I love chai tea. I think I had the most wonderful cup last weekend at Cupcake Royale in Bellevue, WA.
10. I am overwhelmingly grateful for the friendships that I have. I randomly texted this picture to my best friend, it just makes me giggle with joy that we will be friends until we are old, and then for even longer.
11. I am truly happy, from the bottom to the top of my creative soul, when I am making or doing something with my hands. I inherited this trait from my Grandma Virginia. She is always doing, making, serving, creating...I believe it makes her truly happy too.
If my hands are not busy then I am picking my cuticles which is a pretty awful habit.

P.S.If anyone that is reading this, wants to challenge themselves to do this post on their blog, please leave a comment with a blog link so we can all have a peek at your 11 Random Things. Thanks.

P.S.S. After I published this post, I realized it was my 700th post!!!!
Isn't that pretty cool??? Leave me a comment and I will draw 3 winners for a lovely gratitude journal. I picked up these lovely journals at Target and I decorated the cover and just couldn't stop at one! So I have three I would love to send to 3 lovely readers of this blog! I will draw winners on Monday 11/19/2012.
update: Forget the 'follower' thing....just leave a comment & I will draw three {3} winners on Monday!

Friday, November 2, 2012

Ella's Special Day

Last Sunday, Ella was baptized a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. We are very proud of the decision she made to be baptized. Photobucket
She was lucky enough to share this special day with a friend.


I gave a talk about Baptism, and Christian played a special piano solo. We had Nancy's famous chocolate chip & oatmeal cookies with milk afterwards. It was a great day! Photobucket

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Cards for the Troops

Today I found out my brother will be deployed again very soon with the Navy. He will be away for several months. I don't know why it hit me so hard, but I cannot stop thinking about it. I think about his wife and two boys and how strong they are. And maybe they are strong because they don't have any other choice but to be. Like all military families, they have done this before and they will do it again. I really don't think that thank you is even enough. Please keep this family & all other military in your prayers.

There is a great program called Operation Write Home where card makers can send cards and they are sent for the troops to write cards home to loved ones and also for loved ones to write cards of gratitude to encourage them.  You can go to the above link for more information.  I hope this holiday season you will find some time to make a bundle of cards to send for the military troops.

You can read the article I wrote for Fiskars here about making cards for our military troops:


Thursday, September 27, 2012

No Sew Halloween Costume

We have made it to my favorite season of all: FALL! And we love Halloween time. Each year we look forward to deciding what to be for Halloween. My kids always have their own ideas and we work on the costumes throughout the month ready for October Thirty-One!!!
Recently I created a no sew costume for Fiskars. Ella was my model and she had a wonderful time trying on the headbands and loves the tutu! Here are a few more photos of my little Halloween model.
Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket

{This headband actually has a mini witch hat! Can't see it very well in the photo.}

Ella has decided to wear the Little Miss Muffet {spider princess} costume. We have added black lace gloves and spider rings! Are we missing anything you can think of to put this costume over the top??

Read the rest of the article HERE.

This post is sponsored by Fiskars, Inc.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

September 11th

I went through all of my September posts from the past 7 years & I have never written about my 9/11/2001 experience.
We had just moved into our first home over Labor Day weekend. I was 8 months pregnant & Christian was almost 3 years old. It had been an exhausting week of moving & getting settled in. Christian had slept later than usual, so I also slept in with him. When we woke up is was just before 9 am MST. I was getting him breakfast and he turned on the TV to watch cartoons. We didn't have any furniture down in our family room, since this was our first house & had a baby on the way. Just before I turned the channel to PBS, I saw that there was something interesting on the Today show. And then I saw it. The planes crash into the building. They kept showing it over and over again.
I immediately called Craig. He had heard about it on the way to work & they had been watching it on TV from the break room.
I sat on the floor of the family room, and just sobbed. What kind of world were we bringing this precious child into??
That kept going through my mind.
Every time I would look into Christian's sweet innocent eyes, I would cry.
We spent the rest of the day at home, watching the news. I had a list of errands and home projects to start, but going to Home Depot just didn't seem very important on that day.
Craig came home from work & I cried again. I checked on my brother, who was in the Navy; and we talked to many family members on the phone.
It was a quiet night.
I knew that for our children, life would be different. Changed. Forever.
Ella's soccer practice tonight...this is my life. 
Overall people are good. 
Grateful for this day.
Tonight as I put my kids to bed we talked again about this story. We didn't know anyone who had to go through the personal tragedy of losing someone on that day. But I think for all of us it was a day that the country we all knew was different now and would be for every day going forward. But we would go forward and we will continue to move forward & live every day with gratitude, joy, happiness, and probably some heartache. I am grateful for those people who continue to protect our country & for their families you also make sacrifices for our freedom. I will always remember.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Carmel Dumplings

A few weeks ago I was going through my recipe box and looking to resurrect a few favorite recipes. I came across this one which was still written on a 3x5 card I am sure I used while studying at Snow College. My roommate gave me this recipe & it was one of our Sunday night traditions during those 2 years. I remember even after my roommate got married, she made it for us 'single girls' a few times when we were feeling down about college stress, boyfriends, tests, etc. It was such a comfort food.
I made it tonight for dessert. It was a cooler weekend so it felt like Fall was coming. Not sure if that will really happen here in Texas, but I can only hope.

Carmel Dumplings
By Rochelle Kjar
Put in large skillet/sauce pan:
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
2 cups water
1 tsp. vanilla
2 Tbsp. margarine (or I used butter)
Mix together in separate bowl:
6 heaping Tbsp. Bisquick
3 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
Milk - until it is thicker than pancake batter
Bring sauce to a boil. Drop spoonfuls of doling batter into sauce pan. Turn down heat to simmer. Cover & simmer 15-20 minutes
Top with ice cream or whip cream.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Summer Reading Part 2

Ella Minnow Pea is a girl living happily on the fictional island of Nollop off the coast of South Carolina. Nollop was named after Nevin Nollop, author of the immortal pangram,* “The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog.” Now Ella finds herself acting to save her friends, family, and fellow citizens from the encroaching totalitarianism of the island’s Council, which has banned the use of certain letters of the alphabet as they fall from a memorial statue of Nevin Nollop. As the letters progressively drop from the statue they also disappear from the novel. The result is both a hilarious and moving story of one girl’s fight for freedom of expression, as well as a linguistic tour de force sure to delight word lovers everywhere. {from goodreads} 
This was a great book! I loved the word play & the characters. I think that this was a great lesson in taking something too far or too literal, and what the consequences are. 

Alright, if I didn't have this book on my Kindle app, I would lend it to everyone I know. Of course, since this book is about 4 friends & a scrapbook, I fell in love. But I also have followed this author in the scrapbooking community for many years & she has written a wonderful book. I have read a few other fiction novels about scrapbooking and they have been pretty cheesy. This one definitely isn't like those other books. It is a beautiful story of long lasting friendships & the chance for healing. There are 2 other books in the series, A Sweethaven Homecoming is out now.

I have read this book before. But this summer when we went to see Rock of Ages, they had a preview for the movie that is coming out this Christmas season with Leonardo DeCaprio as Jay Gatsby. It looks amazing. So I read it again. It is very short, but was happy that I read it again. It is a classic! Such a rich, engaging story. I am also excited to see Tobey Macguire as Nick Carraway. Such a good character for him.

I received this book for my birthday from a good friend. Wow! It was a thriller. I don't usually go looking for these types of books but I am glad I read this in the daytime & near the pool. It was an intense story and has a shocking twist at the end. Loved it!

As I was reading this, I felt that I have actually read this story before. Maybe I started it with the kids and we never finished it. But this time we did. I love Katie Dicamillo's writing. It is so soothing. She had me at Because of Winn-Dixie & I have been a fan every since. This story has wonderful lessons learned throughout. It is almost like a fable. Expect miracles. Always have a hope & desire for good. It was a beautiful read.

I am actually finishing this one right now. I had it from the library on my Kindle, but after 3 weeks it expired and someone else had it on their waiting list so I couldn't download it to finish. I went on a hunt for another copy & 2 airports later I found it! It is a book that you think about when you are not reading it. I love author's that can write that well. This also has many medical situations that he writes in full detail, so if you have a weak stomach - be ready! It is about twin brothers, and one tries to break free from the tradition of his family to make a better life for himself & the childhood stories that brought him to where he is today through heartache, anger, sadness, joy, and hope! Good, good read! *If you are on please find me from the link on the left side of this blog. I have a long list of books I want to read, but I am always interested in what others have found fascinating.
 What did you read this summer? Please share!
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