So, this is my fourth or fifth attempt at writing a post during the holidays.  Ha!  Here at Romper Room, we have been having a very busy time!  Whew!  Between the children having their winter break from school and children getting sick, we have had a time of it.  All the while, we’ve been entertaining holiday visitors, getting together with loved ones and friends, baking and sharing cookies, giving gifts and getting them, too, and all the rest of the revelry we call the holidays.  
 
Life is never dull, you know?  I may not have had the time to finish a single post, but, I loved it when Jaela came and climbed up in my lap to get some loving.  It was also a welcome interruption to spend an hour with my grandson, watching a program on animals and how smart they are.  His outlook on such things, at 8-years-old, is so amazing!  I had plenty to do, too, the day Kaleb was brought to me for his mommy to go ‘see Santa’.  But, that time that I spent with the little guy was so neat!  He’s all but walking and a ton of fun.  And, his cuddles while rocking him are so sweet!  His daddy, my son, started walking on his first birthday.  Today is Kaleb’s first.  We’ll see!
 
Happy Birthday, Kaleb! 
My birthday was the other day, too.  Yep!  December 23rd!  My family took me to dinner and went in together on a new terabyte external hard drive for me.  I was tickled!  I’m slowly getting my 450gbs of designing resources switched over.  I also received the most beautiful greetings from my friend Miss Edna.  She is such a peach!  There were a lot of folks who stopped in and wished me a happy one.  I THANK all of you!
Real quickly, before another interruption, I have a couple of links for you.  Before they are put away, zoom on over to Sandy Crea’s blog and collect those 25 days of Christmas goodies!  For 25 days, there was a free downloadable “present” for the readers.  The links were still up as of this writing.  What is it about this give away?  You won’t believe all that is in these downloads!  They are amazing.  From Christmas goodies to dinosaurs, they have it all.  Give it a checking out and see.  The website is in French and I don’t do French, but, you can easily figure out the download process.
Next, for anyone who is into fonts, I found what I believe is a well-kept secret.  Over at typOasis, there is a complete collection of Dieter Steffman’s fonts.  Actually, they have some awesome collections there!  Dieter just has so many and they are all works of art!  You can also find some cool dingbats from Eduardo Recife!  His art is amazing!  See what all is hiding among the pages of this site and who knows?  Your next big inspiration may just be there!  LOL
I think I have written about this place before, but, Vintage Vectors is one you need to subscribe to.  Vintage is hot right now!  If you have Photoshop, you can use vector files in it.  They offer free downloads of some really awesome designs!  Here are some they offered recently:
 
Also, there is a ‘sister’ site, Keep Designing.  There, you will find the vectors, but, there is a lot more.  This is more of a general design site with Photoshop things like brushes, Illustrator stuff, tutorials, etc.  I know you will find something you like!  Subscribe to the RSS feed of either site and catch all the downloads as they are posted, at least several times a month from Vintage Vector.  The best thing about vectors, if you need more persuading, is that no matter how large or small you make them, they retain their shape and all details as they aren’t based on pixels.  And, lastly, but, most importantly, the people are so darned nice!  You leave a comment and they’ll respond.  That means something to me.
I promised that I would come back after my last post with a little present for everyone.  I didn’t get it posted in time for my birthday.  Didn’t make it on Christmas either.  But, I’m finally getting it posted.  I have made a few things.  Click on the images to go to 4Shared for downloading.
 

SU CheshireCat

Greetings!  In my last post, I mentioned that I was coming back to give you folks a little present from me to you for the holidays.  Well, here I is!  LOL  I’ve been trying to post this since yesterday morning.  We have so much going on around here, I am having some probs with that.  LOL  Tomorrow is Christmas and all the children and trees and gifts and dinner.  Yesterday was a busy day, too, with the family getting together, too.  It was my birthday!

The family took me out to dinner last evening for my birthday.  It was very nice.  There was 10 of us and, though the children were a bit out of sorts, it was an excellent time and food!  I enjoyed myself!  After dinner, we went to visit my oldest daughter.  She had the cake and ice cream for my birthday. She couldn’t make it to dinner as she had to work.  She’s a paramedic.   That was fun and really neat!
My in-box has been slap full the past couple days with all the online peoples sending me birthday greetings.  You know how you register to be able to log in at most sites?  They ask for your date of birth, then, send you greetings on that day.  Some included cards and/or a download, some coupons and just a lot of merriment.  Everyone is in always in the holiday spirit on my birthday, so, it is most often a joyous time.
I’ve been doing a lot of Photoshop stuff this week.  Digital Whisper has been having their “12 Days of Christmas” and, WHOOOEEE!!!  What fun!  Each day we are given a tutorial and a challenge, centered around the theme of the poem/song.  For instance, on the first day, we used a specified set of brushes to make a pear tree.  With some of the challenges, we are given an image, or two or three.  It has been both, a learning experience and a hell of a lot of fun, with prizes, too!  It wasn’t necessary to stick with the “12 Days” theme if we didn’t want to, as long as we used the items given.  As an aside, there is a challenge where we start with a mansion image.  Each challenge we complete, we place it in different ‘rooms’ we make on the mansion.  Here is what mine looks like with only four(4) of the days filled in.  Click to enlarge to see better.
The pear tree in the front was the first challenge.  It was within an image, but, I thought the tree would look nice as landscape for my Christmas mansion.  So, I put it in front.  Room 5 is ready, but, that piece isn’t placed yet.  Here are the first 4 days as I made them:
Day 1
Day 2
Day 3
Day 4
We’re on Day 11 today, but, I’ll post the remaining images later.  It has been so much fun!  I’m going to hate to see it end!
Finally, I put together some things to give you.  I’m a sucker for textures and I can’t get enough flowers, roses, specifically.  So, guess what is in this pack?  LOL  I hope you can find a use for the stuff.  

SU CheshireCat

Freebie Final Parts Collab with Miss Edna

Good Monday!  Gosh!  It’s the 20th of December!  Do you know what that means!?  Only 3 more days until my birthday!  LOL  Yep, I am one of those lucky individuals who celebrates their birthday at Christmas time.  On the one hand, there are always a lot of pretty lights and music, family and feast and a lot of ‘good will’ on my birthday.  On the other hand, many of my friends go out of town for the holiday.  Plus, it falls when everyone is out of school for the holiday and isn’t around to help me celebrate.  No ‘mom brings cupcakes and punch to school for your class’.  Mine was spent with family more than anyone else and that was fine.  There were several years that my family and I were traveling on my birthday.  We would go to visit my sister for Christmas.  I awoke several birthday mornings in a motel with my family.  On more than one occasion I was told about some neat toy I had wanted, but, that I would have to wait until we returned home to get it – it was too big to bring with on our road trip to my sister’s.  Though I can appreciate the family getting together, I totally think children should be in their own homes for the Christmas morning.
 
There are some really fun things going on online for the holidays.  I’ve been collecting all kinds of goodies!  Sophisti-Scraps has their annual 17 Days of Christmas”, which, based on previous years, is always a real treat!  Then, Sandy Crea has a gift a day until Christmas.  The offerings are absolutely marvelous!  Each day there is a big bright present posted.  You click on the link and it is just like getting a present!  LOL  The goodies are such fun!  The links are still up, too.  I’m sure you’ve found some more fun Christmas “dailies”.  They’re neat! 
Alrighty!  Today is the third and final installment of my collaboration with Miss Edna, “Visions of Sugar Plums.”  The previous two(2) releases, parts 1-4 of this kit are still up.  See the previous posts.  We give out 2 parts of our kit each in a release, so, today will be parts 5 and 6, the final.  Miss Edna and I got a kick out of doing this fun kit.  You’ve got to get this one!  My parts’ links are below the previews.  After you get those, head over to Miss Edna’s Place and collect her final 2 parts.  Her preview is clickable for her blog.
Elements:
Papers:
Miss Edna:
I intend to be back before the big day with a little pressy for all.  Until then,
SMILE!  It’s all the rage – EVERYWHERE!
Hugs,
Su

SU CheshireCat

Freebie Collab with Miss Edna Second Parts

Hi!  This is going to be short.  I’m down in my back.  It’s freakin’ cold and the metal rods don’t take to it very well.  But, I want you to have the second parts of the “Visions of Sugar Plums” kit that Miss Edna and I collaborated on together.  It was such a fun kit to make!  I hope you are enjoying it.
 
The links are below the preview.  After you download my 2 parts, head over to Miss Edna’s Place and collect the 2 parts she will have over there for you.
Click on Miss Edna’s preview to go to her blog.
If you’ve missed the first parts, both, Miss Edna and I, leave the links up for a while.  Please check previous posts for earlier parts.
That’s going to do it for today.  Since I didn’t write anything, I will get back on here later to share a little with you.  Right now, I have a date with a heating pad.  LOL
Smile, for me!

Hugs,

Su

SU CheshireCat

New Freebie Collab with Miss Edna

Hi, all!  For Florida, IT’S COLD!  It’s 37 degrees F out there and it’s the first real cold snap of the season.  Tonight it is supposed to get down in the 20’s.  Brrr!!  To some of you in colder climates, you are probably laughing, but, it’s all relevant.  We’re just not used to it, plus, with the humidity, the cold permeates into everything and sticks.  We just aren’t accustomed to it.  I recall a young man, a friend of my ex-in-laws, coming from Illinois to visit Florida, one summer.  The man was complaining that, in Florida, “It’s so humid and rains so much, you can’t tell when it is raining or if it has stopped.”  It hangs in the air.  I lived up up around Chicago a few years when I was married.  I was not cold for even one second the entire time I was there.  It was a dry cold.  Even when the wind chill factor made it 70 degrees below zero and with 6 feet of snow on the ground, I was never cold.  I come back to Florida and see 45 degrees and I shiver.  LOL  You know what, though?  I would much rather have the cold than the heat.  It’s alot easier to get warm than it is to cool off.
All over digi-land, folks are gearing up for the holidays.  We ramble along, shopping, decorating, visiting, and cooking, all to the red and green theme of the season.  Salvation Army bell-ringers provide the soundtrack and the smell of pine teases our nostrils.  All thoughts are on gifts.  What will we give?  What will we get?  My family always asks me what I want and I tell them, “I am the easiest person to shop for!”  But, this year, I told them I wanted a new External Hard Drive.  The one I have now is almost bursting at the seams.  Time for more space!  I hear there are some out now that can hold a Terabyte.  Whoa!  That’s what I need!  I would never have imagined that, one day, I, as an older person, would be wanting electronic equipment for a holiday gift.  The times, they are a changin’!  LOL  What are you wishing for?
Yesterday was my oldest step-grandson’s 16th birthday.  What a nice party and cookout there was for him.  My son and his wife out did themselves with food, family, friends and fun.  It was so fun, but, more than anything, I saw what a great home they have made for their children, all 5 of them.  Oh, and two dogs and some fish, too.  Their house is open to all of the children in the neighborhood, as well, with rules.  While there yesterday, every child who walked by, my DIL spoke to them and invited them in for cake.  Some of the parents of my grandson’s friends dropped them off, but, still, she was there, speaking to each of them.  The home is warm and comfy.  There are family photos everywhere, which just echo all the living that is going on within those walls.  
On one prominent wall in the great room area, there was a collection of green, construction-paper wreaths, each decorated in very different ways.  My DIL had sat everyone down together and they made a fun thing out of decorating individual wreaths with little bits and cut-outs like sleighs, trees, bulbs, whatever.  Everyone of them, my son included, made their wreath and they’re all very different.  They were all awesome.  From 11mo Kaleb, up to 16yo Chad, everyone had a wreath up on the wall!  The atmosphere was, above all else, loving.  With all of the kids and friends and family and pets, even my DIL’s ex-husband and his new wife, everyone was respectful, kind, generous and loving.  The children, even those of the neighborhood, were well-behaved and everyone looked out for each other, toddlers and teen-aged boys alike.  Like the old adage, ‘ran like a fine-tuned machine’, my son and DIL were the picture of relaxation and happiness – contentment, I guess it is.  There are two people that genuinely “get in to” their children.  And, it shows.  My son pulled me aside at one point and noted that ‘this was like our house used to be when we were growing up’.  I am so proud!.  Too often, I dwell on past mistakes, errors in judgment and things that just couldn’t be helped.  I wish that some things had never happened and I mourn the things that have been taken away from me.  I can stay busy dwelling on the bad in the past, but, rarely, do I ever stop and think that I might have done some stuff right.  It is a good feeling.  One that I like.  I couldn’t have done it, however, had it not been for the three wonderful children I have or the other members of my family.  Thanks, guys!  I love all of you!!
Now, what I know you have been patiently waiting for, the December Collaboration with Miss Edna, “Visions of Sugar Plums”.  I wrote in another post of how I used to have the book, “T’was the Night Before Christmas”, or “Visit From St. Nick”.  In it was an image, on the page where it said, 
“The children were nestled, 
All snug in their beds,
While visions of sugar plums
Danced in their heads.”
This isn’t the same exact image, but, you get the idea:
The image fascinated me!  I don’t know what it was about that one image, but, all the candies, cookies, cakes, pies, trinkets and ‘sugar plums’ really tickled my imagination.  (Just what exactly is a sugar plum, anyway?  LOL)  I’ve kept it in my store house (brain) all these years and it is still vivid!  You know, I think I still have that book.  It may be in my old trunk.  I’ll have to go check it out.  If it is, I’ll copy the image to digital and show ya’ll.  To me, the ‘visions’ epitomize childhood fantasies.  LOL  They have just never gone away.
Below are the previews.  Beneath the image, there are two(2) links to go to MediaFire to download.  There are two(2) files each week, until, in three weeks time, you have six(6) parts from each of us, Miss Edna and myself.  I separated the papers from the elements for the preview only.  Each download will have some of the papers and some of the elements.  There are a couple of extra ‘pages’ I threw in there that I tinkered around with.  You are welcome to fix them up and, with one, add decorations(enclosed) to it to get your own “Christmas tree in a room”.  There are lots of sparkles and fairies, candies and flowers.  I hope you have as much fun playing with this collection as we did making it.
Visions of Sugar Plums Preview
After downloading my two parts, you need to stop over at Miss Edna’s Place to pick up her two parts.  Click the link or on her preview to go to her blog:
 Try as I did to spread things out and come up with file sizes close to 25 or 30 mbs, with all the glitz and images, each file is closer to 50mbs.  If you have a problem with files that size, leave a comment and I will re-post the two files in to four parts for you.
There you have it!  Do enjoy and have fun!  Until the next time, take care and remember to
smile!
Hugs,
Su

SU CheshireCat