Grand Haven

When you can’t get to the ocean a trip to the lake is the next best thing.

I love the sounds of the ocean, toes in the sand with not a care in the world.  (I really do!)

Sometimes it’s just not in the cards.  When that happens, the lake is a pretty close second.

We took a few days to unwind, relax and enjoy the scenery.

We’ve been to several towns around Lake Michigan but this was our first trip to Grand Haven.

It’s a pretty little place with a quaint downtown and plenty of great places to eat.

On Sunday night we happened upon a free concert downtown by the water

and then on Monday night a free musical water light show.

For a small town there’s a lot to do.

On Tuesday, I didn’t quite have my fill of water so we stopped in South Haven on our way home

for a bite to eat and another lighthouse to explore.

South Haven Lighthouse.

I could sit and watch the sailboats for hours.  Not a bad way to recharge the old batteries.  (I almost got my recommended dose of vitamin sea.)

*Disclosure:  This blog uses ads and affiliate links.  If you choose to make a purchase using one of the links, I receive a small commission (at no additional cost to you) that helps offset the costs of maintaining this blog.  Thanks for your support!

Creating a Summertime Essentials Bag

 With Summer and Vacation time here…

it’s a good idea to make a Safe Travels Essentials Bag to pack in the car.

There are so many things to remember when taking a vacation.

So…whenever we take a road trip I like to pack a few essentials to have handy.

When you have kids you never know what can happen.

For my Safe Travels Bag I used:

  1. If you use a fabric bag… cover with a soft clean cloth and iron on cotton settings for 30 seconds. Turn bag inside out and iron for an additional 30 seconds.
  2. Because I used a leather bag… I glued the letters onto the bag using a craft glue.

There are so many items that you might need to have on hand this summer.

These are just a few:

  • band-aids or first aid kit
  • sunscreen
  • anti itch spray
  • bug spray
  • rain poncho
  • scissors
  • small sewing kit
  • tweezers
  • toilet paper?

 

 

“This is a sponsored post.  As a member of the Joy® Design Team I have been provided product and compensation in exchange for my creative ideas.  The views and opinions are my own.

Look for Joy® iron-on embroidered alphabet letter sheets at your local craft store.

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*Disclosure:  This blog uses ads and affiliate links.  If you choose to make a purchase using one of the links, I receive a small commission (at no additional cost to you) that helps offset the costs of maintaining this blog.  Thanks for your support!

Tropical Vacation Mini Album

Who’s ready for a Tropical Vacation?  

Many, many years ago, I met my sweetie while visiting the island of Oahu.

Twelve years ago we went back.  (I’m thinking we’re long overdue.)

I need a tropical vacation!

This week, the Xyron Design Team teamed up with Die Cuts with a View.

I received the Electric Jungle Paper Pad, a bright and colorful collection.  

For my project, I decided to make a mini album.  I’m not sure if I’ll use the really old, kind of old

or wait until I get new pictures to place inside the album.  (hint, hint!)

Tropical Vacation Mini Album Supplies Used:                     (*affiliate links)

*Disclosure:  This blog uses affiliate links.  If you choose to make a purchase using one of the links, I receive a small commission (at no additional cost to you) that helps offset the costs of maintaining this blog.  Thanks for your support!

  • Cut paper to fit the pages of the chipboard album.
  • Lay decorative scrapbook paper (design side up) on the  *Xyron Creative Station, 9″ crank the handle to run the paper through the machine.  As it moves through the Xyron Creative Station it adds adhesive to the back side of the paper.
  • Easy to use and it doesn’t need any electricity.
  • I like using the Xyron Creative Station* when making mini books because you get complete coverage, no wrinkling, no bubbles!

  • Once the pages are covered with the paper, use a craft knife and cutting mat to trim around the edges of the chipboard.
  • Use the XYRON Adhesive Eraser* to remove any extra adhesive from the edges.
  • Gently sand away rough cut edges on the paper using a extra fine sanding block.
  • Because the chipboard is tan and the core of the paper is white, I inked the edges of the pages with a light tan ink and a ink blending tool.
  • I created thick tags by using a tag cut from the paper pad and adhering it onto a small piece of chipboard.  I used a gold calligraphy paint marker to create a gold border around the edge of the tag.
  • The “Palm Tree” and “Relax” on the front of the mini album both have chipboard underneath to create added dimension.

“This is a sponsored post.  As a member of the Xyron Design Team I have been provided product and compensation in exchange for my creative ideas.  The views and opinions are my own.

Create a Beach Votive with a few Dollar Store Treasures.

Create a Beachy Votive with a few Dollar Store treasures.

A cheap and easy beachy decoration.

A great way to display those small shells collected on vacation.

I purchased the Parmesan Cheese Shaker and battery Votive at Dollar Tree.  (Total cost $2.00.)

To make the Beachy Votive here’s what I used:                             (*affiliate link)
Directions:
  1. On the bottom of the Parmesan Shaker, create the look of waves with the DecoArt Glass Paint Marker, White*.

2.  Wrap wire around a pencil for a spiral handle.

3.  Using the needle nose pliers, make a small loop on each end of the wire.

4.  Find two small shells with natural holes on the end.  Tie them together with a small piece of string.

5.  Thread burlap ribbon through both looped ends of the wire and tie around the top of the parmesan shaker.  Add shells on string as you knot the ribbon.

6.  Glue top of broken shell onto the knot of the burlap ribbon with Beacon Fabri-Tac Permanent Adhesive*.

7.  Add approx. 1″ of sand into the parmesan shaker.  Add small votive and shells.

The Beachy Votive looks good with or without the lid.

The Beachy votive was created for Craft Ideas magazine’s Summer 2017 issue.

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I actually made it to the ocean this year.

Myrtle Beach Layout 09768

Going to the Ocean is one of my favorite things to do…

and it had been three long years since we last visited.

It was long over due.  The beach was calling.

Long daily walks on the beach, soaking up the sun, ocean breezes, good food, reading and relaxing.

It was hard to come back.  I needed another week.  (I need another week!)

Jim and Sue 9530 - Copy

During our week there, we allowed our teen-age son to visit and stay with his best friend who lives

an hour away from where we were staying.  Giving him those few days to re-connect also gave

my husband and I a few days to re-connect as well.

Charleston Collage

After we picked him up we headed to Charleston for the day.

Charleston is one of the most beautiful and one my all time favorite cities.

Charleston 9440

Charleston is steeped in history and gorgeous homes.

I enjoy walking along the harbor, taking pictures and checking out the architecture.

Sweetgrass Baskets

Another favorite is visiting the Market Place where I am always fascinated by the Sweetgrass Baskets,

a true Charleston tradition.   (I’ve invested in a few baskets over the years.)

The baskets may seem a little pricey, but, when you consider the tedious hours of labor that goes into

each one, they’re probably underpriced.

Myrtle Beach

Luckily, we had a few more beautiful days of sunshine together before heading home.

It’s never enough time for me.

(If you’d like you can read last year’s post about not going to the beach here.)

Myrtle Beach Layout 9752

I created my beach layout using Paper House Productions

At the Beach Paper Crafting Kit and the New Beach Mixed Card Pack.

I layered three different patterned papers to mimic the color of the water on the horizon line

and the feel of the sandy beach.

Beach Life Close Up 9781

I love the New Beach Mixed Cards, the pack comes with a variety of pictures, overlays and frames.

(I added thin 3-D foam mounting squares to the back of the frame before attaching it to the picture.)

The Myrtle Beach Sticker (for decorating your phone) was found at a local beach shop.

 

Here is a list of the Paper House Productions products used:

My beach layout was created for and sponsored by Paper House Productions.

Visiting St. Joe

Silver Beach Lighthouse

With not much summer left before school starts next week, we planned a mini vacation to the beautiful town of St. Joseph, Michigan.  With life happening yet again, we were only able to get two days.

So….we packed as much fun as possible in the little time we had.  We sat on the beach and laid in the sun, walked down the beach to check out the lighthouse and pier, ate a wonderful Italian dinner, visited fun shops, bought ice cream and desert, then watched the sun go down.  (and that was just day 1)

Justin fishing in St. Joe

The next day as the guys fished off the Pier, I sat on the beach.  I closed my eyes and pretended I was at the ocean.  With the temperature only being 63 degrees, we didn’t stay long.

Sue in St. Joe 3

Next, we headed off for a rooftop lunch.  After lunch we went to the Fun park where Justin hit balls in the batting cages, raced go carts (I won) and then a round of mini golf.  We looked up a local winery, tasted a few and then off to find a new beach.  Still chilly, we only stayed 45 minutes while I soaked up as much beach as I could.  Then off towards Chicago and a quick dinner and then back home again.

This was my first time visiting St. Joseph, I definitely want to go again.

Summer Distractions

Summer Collage 2014

Summer always goes so fast for me.

It’s always around this time in the Summer that I start wondering what I’ve done.

That’s why I’m glad I take a lot of pictures, so I can look back and remember.

No, we didn’t take a big family vacation.  But, we’ve been busy just the same.

33 games of baseball, picnics in the park, swimming whenever the weather

was warm enough, a couple of out of state week-ends trips, unexpected home repairs

and general laziness.

I guess that’s what summer’s really all about.   Enjoying life as it happens.