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Now available at Faith Sisters

And since it’s CYBER-MONDAY it is half off until tomorrow!



Turkey made by Ellie last week at Awana. He will be joining us later for dinner.

Earlier this week, Ellie’s class performed a play about the first Thanksgiving. She was a tree. She was a very cute tree. She did a great job being a tree (and this wasn’t easy for a girl who doesn’t like to stay still for long!)

Have a happy and blessed Thanksgiving!


Two weekends ago Jeff and I had the opportunity to spend much needed weekend at the cabin WITHOUT the kids! I love my children so much, but the rest, quiet and couple time was wonderful. We drove up Friday night after Jeff got off work. On Saturday we took in the local craft fair at the school after pushing the boat into the garage for winter storage. We didn’t buy anything but there were many nice things to be had. Then we did a bit of shopping and topped off our outing with lunch at the Pizza Ranch. By mid-afternoon it had started snowing. Things in the cities were much worse (they were getting 6 inches back home) while we only got about an inch. We didn’t find out until later, but apparently Brandon got his first winter driving lesson on the way to debate that morning and slid off the road. He and the car were fine.

Jeff and I had originally planned to go out to a nice dinner to celebrate our birthdays but with the snow and our big lunch and a bottle of wine we decided to stay in for the night. The next morning we awoke to a beautiful winter scene:

As you can tell I loved how the snow stayed on the branches and the tops of the cattails. While I was out photographing all this beauty, Jeff was inside staying warm.

The annual Minnesota Viking Cheerleader Holiday Show was held the same day as Jeff’s birthday, so after spending the afternoon with him, I picked up the girls from school and headed to the Mall of America. The show featured the awesome ladies of the MVC and also all the MVC programs including my A-team (alumni), the All Stars (Anna’s team) and the Training Program (ladies that tried out for the MVC and didn’t quite make it but showed high potential–they are in training for next year’s tryouts). We had a quick snack, got into costume and got ready. They had reserved seats in the first few rows for team members so I set up in the front with my video camera. Ellie was so excited to see all the dancing. I was in 3 of the 4 dances by the A-team. It’s a bit intimidating dancing at the MOA rotunda area with the crowds not only spread out in front of you but also above you.

I was the most nervous for my last routine since we hadn’t performed it yet. It also was right after Anna’s team performed so I was concentrating on her dance and enjoying every second of it and not thinking about what I was going to do next. Good thing my teammates pointed me in the right direction.

MVC Head Coach Tami with Anna and me after the show.

We were surprised at the end of the show with the presentation of a rose to each member of the MVC family: the All Stars, Training Program, A-team, Coaches and Staff. While we were all on stage here’s what Ellie was doing:

On the way home Ellie commented that, “All the dancing was awesome…even you Mom.” I think that was a compliment.


Last August my Ellie had so much fun at a local splash pad:

This layout is made with an awesome new kit by my digi-friend, Heather T.

It’s available at Mscraps


I have a new kit in the store and it’s on sale 25% off through Sunday (just to get you into the holiday spirit). Get ready to scrap all those Christmas memories or get caught up from last year (I confess I’m one of these!).

This kit also include two holiday cards (one vertical design and one horizontal):

Get it at Faith Sisters

And don’t forget to follow my work at LATZ designs on Facebook

Just three days after my birthday is Jeff’s birthday. He likes to tease me that we are the same age for those three days. But I know he’s still a year older. Jeff took the day off to enjoy his birthday. After my Bible Study Fellowship class, we went out to lunch and enjoyed a walk through downtown and along the river. It was amazing to see the huge log jam at the old bridge.

Later in the day both Anna and I had a performance at the Mall of America (Ellie came along) and Brandon had to work at his job at McDonald’s, so Jeff and Austin had a dinner out to celebrate. When we got home it was time for cake (another wonderfully decorated Ellie creation) and presents. Now we’re done with the birthdays in our house until next month (there are 3)!

OK, there I said it..I am now officially 47. It happened last week and I survived. Actually it was fun. I started the day by showing up at the Metrodome by 8:15 am to practice on the field with the MVC for our end zone routine. A bit of added pressure was on as the Arizona Cardinal’s cheerleader coach and her captains were there observing in addition to the MVC coaches. After practice the A-team ladies all sang “happy birthday” to me. Then it was time to head outside for more practice for both Anna and myself since both our teams were performing on the Plaza. I dropped Anna off with another All Star Mom and headed to the other side of the dome for a run-through of our Plaza routines with the A-team. I got back to the Plaza in time to see Anna’s team run through their routine. My A-team danced first to “Not Myself Tonight”. It was fun having a large group this time and we really rocked it out.

Then the All Star teams hit the Plaza. Anna was awesome and I am so proud of her. She really gives it her all when she performs.

After the performances on the Plaza the girls all helped with the food drive. Then it was into the dome to watch the game.

It was so much fun dancing in the end zone with the MVC, but I was happy when it was done so I could relax and enjoy the game. I can keep up with those ladies half my age at least through one routine. The Vikings even pulled out a win in over-time for my birthday. Thank you Vikes!

Anna and I stopped for a quick chocolate birthday treat after the game. I arrived home to a clean house (thank you Jeff!). A family dinner complete with cake (decorated by Ellie) capped off my wonderful birthday day.

Last week Ellie made a request that I teach her to play the piano. She was both serious and excited about this. So I dug out my old primer book that I started with for her to use. I noticed that the price tag on the book said, “$1.50”. I wonder what it would cost today. Anyway, I began by teaching her C-D-E using the proper fingers. She practiced C-D-E and then E-D-C over and over again. She was so excited to be playing music. We just had to share this new skill so I called Grammie. After Ellie played for her and Grammie congratulated her on her new skill, I continued to talk on the phone while Ellie continued to practice. A few minutes later I hear Ellie saying “F-G-A”. I went over to the piano and realized that she had figured these 3 notes out all by herself just using the diagram in her book. Here she is at her first lesson:

This kit is also from Heather T and will be available starting tomorrow at her store.

I couldn’t resist capturing this on video also. Thanks for indulging this proud Mom.


In other news, my “Glitter Fairy” layout of Anna in her Halloween costume was featured this week at MyPicTales Blog