Monday, April 29, 2013

Project Life: Week 16

Scrapbooking has always been such good therapy for me.  It gets me out of my own head. I had no clue what to do with myself these past few days other than sit around and mope.  I put this together just because I needed some kind of accomplish-able goal.  Even though Ryan was out of town and now Avinash seems to be getting sick, I got it done in bits and pieces when they slept.  I kept it very simple this week.

This week: Was my 32nd birthday.  I asked Ryan if we could go to LA instead of a party or anything.  Between flight credits and Disney points, it worked out.  I guess we didn't do much at home before we left.  I took few pictures and honestly I don't remember.

 First side: A random collection of things. Avinash's night time questions.  A few beach pictures to help connect the two sides.  We had a fabulous dinner out in LA, and I only broke one chair!
I matted our photo on this glitz birthday paper, added a few pink fabric thickers, black letter stickers.  Finally used the foodie stamp set too.  

I used an SC kit PL card here.  The die cut looking everyday is actually a sticker.  And, yes, when she says paper it sounds like papier. So cute I just want to squeeze her all the time. Then she runs away when I try to give her hugs. Weird.
The top card is also SC.  I added an Amy Tangerine sticker and recolored some alpha stickers with silver metallic. I love painting over things with a metallic sharpie.  Sharpie covers up anything. Initially I was going for the chic minimalist look with just the ormolu flair, but all the stickers kinda got away from me.

I trimmed off this misspelled SC journaling card to hold the date.  Mostly I just like that font (dotness or dotline I believe).

Look at my Audrey Hepburn baby. So glamorous. I find it so funny because she usually throws every hat off and to the ground in seconds. The little word strips are Paislee Press.  

It is so hard to find cards for these non-A page protectors.  Finally found something that worked.  I added a bit of washi and ribbon to the side to give it some definition.

How happy does she look here? I know, I know.  But she would follow that cat around everywhere.  And just lie on the bed.  Font is Savu.  A lovely handwritten sans serif.  Chipboard is old Maya Road.

Second Side: I printed out this lovely print at home.  Despite all of Ryan's incredulity, I did actually take this picture myself (and added a rainbow overlay using Pixlr, but don't tell him that).  I added two Ormolu fabric flappers (at 75% off now, I had to get second pack) and one paislee press tab.  I was going for getting it done quickly but I spent so much time staring at it and just figuring out what I wanted to do it really didn't feel that fast.

Wood veneer, trend thickers, and a little journaling. 

ps. TwoPeas is having a huge sale and I just noticed that wood veneers stars are back in stock!!  

Let me know if you have any questions. Linked up with The Mom Creative for Project Life Tuesday. The PL kits I am using are the Seafoam kit and Clementine kit, with multi-pack page protectors, and grid journaling cards.  Thank you so much to everyone in this wonderful community. I love all the feedback and looking at everything people do each week. It definitely keeps me motivated. Also, please include a link to your projects below so we can check them out too.

Thank you

to everybody who commented, called, texted, fb messaged me, helped me out with the kids, met up with us, offered a hand, and is just there for us.  You have no idea how much it all means to me.   I'm trying to keep a list of everything I'm grateful for and be sad when I need to be. 

I love you guys.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Falling down hard.

I found this series of pictures on Ryan's phone yesterday.  It struck me as kinda funny because I had no idea these pictures were taken.  I realize that maybe Nandini grabbed the camera and took half of these. Yes, that is the hem of my skirt on the ground there.  And her finger over the lens.

The last thing that happened to me before we left Disneyland was I fell flat and landed on the back of my head.  It was like being rudely pushed out of this hazy dream of characters, rides and a big pink castle, down onto the harsh reality of solid concrete. 

I fell even harder the next day. I went to see my Ob's NP because of some bleeding.  We hoped it was only spotting, but it wasn't.  She calmly delivered the news that the sac was empty.  No heartbeat, nothing. The baby was gone. 

She printed out a picture from the ultrasound machine.  I instinctively reached out for it, but as she quietly put it away in the chart I realized there was only one copy and it wasn't for me.  I felt so stupid. 

We were only 8 weeks along and had hardly told anyone yet.  We had only known ourselves for about 3 weeks. I even felt stupid for coming in at all.  For wasting her time on a baby that wasn't even there anymore. She still wants to do more bloodwork and another ultrasound to be sure, but I know it is all pointless.

Life keeps going of course, especially when you have two littles who need taking care of and don't really understand what's going on anyway.  I called a few people, left vague messages to call me back.  A few people texted me to see what was wrong.  Ryan was amazing throughout.  I was so happy last week because he really made me feel taken care of on my birthday, and he did it again this week. 

Even though it was so new and so early, it is hard not to start making plans.  We rented a house in Austin with a 4th bedroom.  We bought a little onesie set at Target, so the baby could have something new.  I started writing about it in my Project Life album.  I thought about going back and taking it out or covering it with pictures, but I don't want to pretend.  Not sure how or if I will document this loss, but I don't want to act like the baby never existed at all.  We already loved it and were so excited. 

Visiting California, seeing our cousins and being at Disneyland was so magical. Being back home is just like slamming into reality all over again.  It is hard to think about that while we there, having fun, the baby was dying, or was already gone.  I just don't know if I will ever know how to feel about that.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Project Life: Week 15

This week: We went house hunting in Austin. We went to brunch. We did projects at the museum and we went to the Japanese Day festival in the park.  

The full spread.  Lots of SC kit cards this week.  Love the corkboard card.  Especially with the 'fight the power' instagram of Nandini.  (See her little fist in the air?)  Not too much color overall.  I kind of loved these photos I took of Avi and Nandini in the hotel, and let the 'minimalist' thing take over from there.  Well, minimalist for me. 

Second Side: I have used that Geralyn Sy filler card many times before, but I found a place for it again this week.  Call it a theme? 
I used another Clementine horizontal card (only available in digi), and added this adventure stamp.  A serious gem from the SC retail line.

 The little loved tag is from the Lucky Charm bits. And yes, they are magically delicious. 

 I printed out this free april circle (from here) after I recolored it bright red. I just pasted it to the outside of the pp. It is a free printable that I found on Pinterest, but darn it if I can't find the source anywhere.  Sorry.  Anyway, can't be that hard to recreate. White text and a colored background, cut or punch out in circle shape.  

 I made an insert this week too. I have been taking photos of Avinash's preschool art creations and then letting go of the guilt as I chuck them in the trash. I made a mini layout with hanging 'frames' and I put a story of his on the back along with a page of Nandini's 'writing'.

Let me know if you have any questions. Linked up with The Mom Creative for Project Life Tuesday. The PL kits I am using are the Seafoam kit and Clementine kit, with multi-pack page protectors, and grid journaling cards.  Thank you so much to everyone in this wonderful community. I love all the feedback and looking at everything people do each week. It definitely keeps me motivated. Also, please include a link to your projects below so we can check them out too! 

Monday, April 15, 2013

Project Life: Week 14 Adventure

 This week: We went to Round Top to look at antiques and eat pie (twice!). We found out that Ryan got a new job in Austin.  We took bluebell pictures (for the second week in a row) at this lovely place near Brenham on 290.  Just a huge field filled with flowers.  We decorated eggs and hung out with friends. Nandini started trying to mimic letters with her crayons. Avi tried to play April Fool's jokes but was always giving away the punchline.  

The whole spread. Always so happy when I remember to take a picture of everything. I'm going to miss this wood when we move.

First Side: Most of my pictures in this album are daytime pictures. So, when I saw this picture Ryan took one evening I decided to put it in.  It is a bit yellow and dark, but I have so few unposed shots of me and the kids I wanted to include it anyway.

I printed out a collage sheet of photos from Round Top and wanted a quick& seamless way to put them on my spread.  I made two journaling cards using a Paislee Press kit.  Then I took a ombre'd piece of BG patterned paper and chopped it to fit into the pockets. 
I like that the ombre lets your eye know that it is one paper and one set of photos. Interspersing it with those kraft cards helps it from becoming one heavy block on the side of the page. I put woodgrain thickers across three pockets to further emphasize their continuity. I had some old banner chipboard pieces that I added to each card.  Then I drew a few thin outlines around each card and just filled in my journaling between the photos.  All together I think it looks surprisingly good for how cluttered it is.

Technically this picture is from the day before our easter egg hunt. Oh well.  Love the simplicity of the midnight kit (I am using the digi kit). I trimmed a Becky Higgins Holiday Mini kit to get the 'easter egg hunt' tab. Those chipboard alphas are Basic Grey.

This is easily my favorite part of the spread. I stamped a Studio Calico stamp in neon pink (just like I did here), added a border of rainbow stripe washi and black thickers for contrast. 
I split the blue sky photo between two pockets and I added my journaling on a die cut kraft circle. It is a lot of color, but I love it.  

 Side two: I used a Paislee Press woodgrain card for the new month. A BH holiday mini kit card for the 'Sunday Brunch' picture of Avi in front of the periodic table. I split another photo of him and just journaled about some random stuff that came to mind about him. 
I put a 3x4 polaroid frame around the four of us in the bluebell picture.  Always so nice when people offer to take a group shot for you. 
I added this picture of me and Nandini from Day in the Life. The journaling circle is from Chic Tags, with a little wood veneer camera on top. I used the self-timer to get this picture.  Nandini wanted nothing else to read her book.

 Nandini was such a doll this day.  She just decided it was the perfect time for coloring outside and out she went. I used another BH Holiday Mini Kit card trimmed and topped with those same black thickers. Her actual drawing was washed out in the photo so I used that space for journaling. Also love how you can still see the Holi powder all over the rug outside.

Brother&sister. They both look so vulnerable here. Pulls at my heart strings. I added a few brother sister stickers to the side. I wasn't sure about them, but they refused to lift off after I put them down.  I guess they add color to this side anyway.
Just wanted to let you all know that  I am offering free domestic shipping in my Etsy shop on all orders over $10 to celebrate spring, just type in RAINBOWS at checkout.  If you are international, email me and I can send you a slightly different code (kumar.niru at  Thank you everybody! 
 Let me know if you have any questions. Linked up with The Mom Creative for Project Life Tuesday. The PL kits I am using are the Seafoam kit and Clementine kit, with multi-pack page protectors, and grid journaling cards.  Thank you so much to everyone in this wonderful community. I love all the feedback and looking at everything people do each week. It definitely keeps me motivated. Also, please include a link to your projects below so we can check them out too! 

Friday, April 12, 2013

You Laugh..

I am playing along with another Centipede challenge from the JBS mercantile forum today.  I'm still a little bummed that I didn't get time to play Calvinball last month, but I am trying to make up for it now..

I made this layout with the 'stamp on text paper' challenge in mind.  Actually, I thought they meant notebook paper at first, so I included this sheet from a new Rifle&Co. notebook, (my new major score from Target). 

I used this sheet of Wren patterned paper that did have text on it, without realizing it was for the challenge.  From there I stenciled the medallions in teal chalk ink and punched some blue patterned paper to sit in the center.  I messy stamped this butterfly + text bookplate stamp over it.  The layers are part of a JBS hodge podge book that I took apart.  I love the old check printed on a transparency. I used vanilla glitter thickers and red JBS letter stickers for the title. 

 I decided to add a few more stamps because I was itching to use my new Ormolu stamp sets - montage and

The ribbon is some old velvet trim I got from my mom's stash. (See? Doesn't that make you feel better about hoarding stuff? Our children may someday find and be enthralled with it!)

I have one last JBS project to share, which I created for the JBS inspiration blog.

I need to get started on my project life layout for last week.  I am no where with "This is Me" yet. Maybe this weekend.  That's all for now. Hope you guys will play along with the JBS centipede challenge too!

Here is my count so far:
1. Take a walk - Our walk around Round Top (why not?)
2. Nature in the home - My Patio Garden

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Project Life - Lizard

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My project life post is a little late this week because went to Austin to start house hunting.  Still no luck yet, but we are keeping our fingers crossed.  The market is really tough out there right now.  Anyway, back to PL.

This week: We took a trip to Hill Country with my parents after Nandini's birthday.  My mom wanted to do the beach, but it is still too cold.  We played Holi again at home like three more times.  Avi had the week off of school for Passover, so we also played a lot at home.  So fun to see Avinash and Nandini playing together more and more.

What I used: Most of my cards are from a digital kit at One Story Down by Two More Days.  This kit is really graphic and fun.  I thought it paired well with my bright Holi color pictures. My go to embellishments are still thickers, wood veneers and enamel dots to add texture.

First side: Love that big picture of Nandini covered in color.  
And the photo of Avinash and Nana roasting s'mores.  I added text to it (font: Silverfake) and a make magic Ormolu flapper. Love those little things.
I also added a little digital stamp from Two More Days to our bluebells photo. 

I took a piece of cardstock outside on one of our Holi days and let it get covered in color.  I let it dry and then trimmed it down to fit in a pocket.  Then I wrapped it in clear OA washi tape so the powder wouldn't leak out all over the place.  I found the days of the week washi worked well with my "play Holi everyday" theme.
The black glitter thickers were added on top of the pocket.  I find that foam thickers are very sticky and adhere well to the plastic.
The little heart on the photo is a fabric flapper from BG.

Nandini keeps losing one shoe.  We call her little Cinderella, plus she loves helping me with laundry.  I think I have to make a full page about this as well.  I added a Chic tag Love note triangle to this TMD journaling card.

 I love that picture of Avinash and Nandini in front of the old barn.  As soon as I saw it at the hotel I knew it was perfect mini-photo shoot material.  I cut apart that little banner from some SC printables.  That cute little notebook paper bag is from Whisker. I tiny attached a little die cut and added the date to the photo (my only one of the spread I think).

I used an Amy Tangerine stamp on this journaling card.  How cute is the hand drawn chevron? I am so blown away by it. I added a MS label sticker to the picture of me.  It turned out a bit dark, but I still like it.  I layered an SC sundrifter wood veneer over a BG sticker

 Second side: Love that little story about Avinash's nature scavenger hunt at the hotel.  He spotted this lizard all on his own.  I thought the Trend thickers paired well with the photo and black striped card.

Love those Holi pictures where you can the color just scattered in the air.  I stamped white on kraft to make this sticker.  I added a cork arrow from SC and this BG button.  It looks really Indian I think.  

 The A is a coordinating TMD font.  I added it directly to the photo before printing. 

I cut this circle out from another TMD journaling card and stapled it on to the photo.  I could have added it on digitally, but I don't always plan ahead.  I just journaled right around it.

On a side note, in my Etsy shop I am offering free domestic shipping on all orders over $10 to celebrate spring, just type in RAINBOWS at checkout.  If you are international, email me and I can send you a slightly different code (kumar.niru at  Thank you everybody!
 Let me know if you have any questions. Linked up with The Mom Creative for Project Life Tuesday. The PL kits I am using are the Seafoam kit and Clementine kit, with multi-pack page protectors, and grid journaling cards.  Thank you so much to everyone in this wonderful community. I love all the feedback and looking at everything people do each week. It definitely keeps me motivated. Also, please include a link to your projects below so we can check them out too! 

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

"This is me...."

I signed up for a new scrapbooking class over at Studio Calico.  It is all about documenting yourself.  A novel concept in my memory keeping to be sure. 

I haven't even selected an album to use for this and I have already hit a wall.  Everything I think of is somehow in relation to my children.  I love them a lot, but I am struggling to find my own voice. 

Maybe I'm overthinking this project just a little and need to dive right in. 

To be honest, the class itself has frustrated me a lot.  Starting with the name. This is me?  That is not a sentence.  And, part of being 'me' is being a grammar nerd.  Sorry, so no, I don't want to title my album "this is me", it just makes my skin crawl. 

Also, most of the example pages are about people's possessions.  I am just not into that.  I think collections can be fun, but to me, it is just not as page-worthy as people and emotions. 

See? I told you I was overthinking this. 

Our lives keep getting more and more busy.  And, seem to be getting more so.  I am inspired by my friend who says she sits down for fifteen minutes or so each night to put something together.  That is going to be my new goal.  And I will share what I come up when it does finally start coming together.  Thanks for listening.

Friday, April 5, 2013

favorite books.

Our kids, like most, love being read to. Avinash is starting to memorize short words and even read a few of the simple ones. He quickly gives up any effort if we try to push him at all but we are happy to let him learn at his own pace for now.

I do love it though when I catch him by himself 'reading' books. His little sister is starting to do the same thing too. Most of the books we read are old favorites, but we have found a few great new ones thanks to the library's weekly giveaways at storytime.

1. Orange Pear Apple Bear
This book is so silly and cute. Just these few words repeated over and over. Avi can sound out the words. Nandini tries to repeat what they say.  It is funny because she calls all these fruits oranges and her favorite lovey is a bear (which she sometimes calls a bowwow).

2. My Very First Book of Words
This book really is a wonderful first reader, especially if you have a child that loves games and is hesitant to read like ours.   The book has two rows of pages, the upper row has the words, you have to flip through the bottom row of pages to find the matching pictures.  I was amazed at how many words Avinash was able to read on his own with this book.  Definitely a keeper.

3. Spooky Old Tree
This is a very old book of Ryan's, that seems to be very early Berenstain Bears.  There is a mysterious younger brother in this book who does not seem to appear again.  There is twisty old stair and a giant bear. Both of them love to sit and listen to this book.  It is a light and easy read. Interesting enough to keep my son's attention (and mine), and quick enough to hold the baby's as well.

4. Messy Room
I loved this book as a kid and I still do now.  The organization is just inspiring. I can even get the kids to clean up their rooms every once in a while after reading this book to them.  Score. I also love that Avinash combs through all the pictures of books on the back looking for new ones he just knows he is going to love. Just like I used to too.

5. Charlotte's Web
This was the first chapter book Avinash and Ryan read together.  They did it over a week or two. We love anything by E.B. White and this was a perfect chapter book to start out with.  The story definitely held his attention.  He paid close attention to the pigs at the rodeo and has told me many a story about spiders and egg sacks since.  Ryan was amazed at how many names and details he remembered from the book. 

6. Ganesha's Sweet Tooth
Ryan recently purchased this new story book for them as well.  It is a fictionalized retelling of how Ganesha wrote down the Mahabharata epic using his tusk as a pen.  Instead of breaking it off himself, the tooth falls off after he bites into a jawbreaker laddoo.  Our children love to read books about our culture and it is always a thrill to find new ones.  Avi very proudly showed it to his Nana and asked him to read it. I think it makes them feel more connected, and I like that this book makes Hinduism a little more relatable since they get very little main stream exposure to it on a daily basis.  Being different is hard, especially when you are little. I am extremely grateful too for the few Sesame Street episodes which focus on Indian culture.  If Elmo likes ladoo, what else do I need to tell them?  { Plus, they both remembered how much they love laddoo and have finished most of my stash in the freezer. Also, am I rambling? I feel like I'm rambling.}

These books are nothing that new or groundbreaking, but I just wanted to relate our experiences with them and how they worked for us at this age (2 and 4).  Linking up with Kelly's Korner.
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