Author Archives: Elizabeth Kartchner

light & laughter

Sure, I could reminisce about the days before we had 3 munchkins… but those days don’t have nearly the same warm light or contagious laughter.
Even though there’s more laundry, more drama, more patience needed.
There’s also more purpose, more meaning, more love.
Even though I can get lost in my role as mother and, some say, I might lose a bit of elizabeth… it’s actually made me who I am and a better me.
No matter what it is in life, the difficult times always makes us stronger. Sometimes I even get scared when things are going good because I think, okay, it’s time for something horrible to happen. Like a Disney movie and their extreme movie plots, where the absolute worst thing has to happen before you can find happiness.
But slowly I am learning to trust that God has a plan for me & to not be scared. Instead treasure the light & the laughter and… just be prepared for the crap! ;)

In other news: It’s this girl’s birthday today. The birthday party will be another day which I am so glad we didn’t plan today because she had a 103.2 temperature last night and we were on the phone with her Pop Pop who’s also a Doctor making sure she’s ok. She slept like a dream & is her same silly self today.
Happy Birthday my darling girl! xoxoxoxo
I was soooo giddy about the pictures I captured last night of my girls! My grandma sent Q&A those outfits so I promised her I would take pictures.

scrapbooking on vacation

cover paper: Block Party & Elastic Ribbon
My diy: Art Kit ended up being a success for our trip to Lake Powell. Usually in the afternoon around lunch time when the kids had enough sun for a while we came inside onto the houseboat. We sat on the second level with a gorgeous view and spent time with the art kit and journal. I brought a larger fabric bag to hold everything along with my paints, scissors, Elmer’s glue, stuff for me to supervise-otherwise known as damage control. ;)
I wouldn’t say that I stole the art kit from Avery, like I joked before our trip, but it worked out perfect because I scrapped the Instax pictures while they watercolored, painted shells & drew pictures. It was kinda fun to only use, scissors, Elmer’s glue, construction paper & the kit.
Everything in this art journal I brought in the art kit. When we got home I added the metal rim tag, a 2″ punched sun, sticker letters, ELASTIC ribbon (I’m obsessed), the vellum envie, fabric scrap and some staples. I love the Tim Holtz mini stapler. Mine wasn’t working but I McGyver’d it & it works like a charm again. It even staples through acrylic & chipboard. Did I mention I love it?

Inside the envie I added extra Instax photos, a shell Quincey gave me, a painted wood dog from Avery, a tag with journaling and extra chipboard shapes. Plus, I added the feather because the girls were so funny whenever a duck came waddling along. This I added at home as a reminder of those ducks.
Dear Lizzy banner paper// Crate Paper stickers//button flowers

Watercolor circles + crayon outline// deco tape// label stickers// chipboard bird tab// button flowers //mini stapler //Instax photos

Including the pre-strung buttons and button flowers was perfect because you just popped them right on the page. Also Studio Calico rubons, paint, deco tape, mini stapler.

Watercolor + crayon circles, deco tape, label stickers, pre-strung buttons, paper flowers, Instax photo
The girls enjoyed painting shells & I included one in the book here. Along with an Elle’s Studio tag.

Precious drawing of Avery & Alfie… and she drew a “toy snowman” too. What I would do to have a peek inside her silly mind? haha

More pages of Avery & Quincey’s art. There’s journaling behind the flashcards. It’s basically a colorful mess but I adore it!

This is so perfect for a vacation… or even if your kids are out of school because it’s all in a bag so when they are done for the day just put it all away and it’s ready for next time.
Congrats if you made it to the end of this post!

fleeting feeling

There are moments on vacation where you stop everything to savor it, “Okay this very second made it all worthwhile.” For our Lake Powell trip this was the defining moment–on the front of the boat, wind in her hair occasionally calling out, “I’m flying!” Not a care in the world.
Oh, man I bottled up this fleeting feeling and will occasionally open it up on those not-so-great days to live it all over again.

As often as I could, I would follow Q-ey around and just do whatever in the world she wanted to do. This was one of the main reasons I was looking forward to this trip. No distractions, no let-me-just-finish-the-dishes-then-we’ll-play. It was all about just being together. I needed that. She needed that.

My tried and tested hypothesis remains true: You can tell how much fun by how ratted her curls are. As you can see lots of fun going on here.

Hiding under a floppy hat. It was awesome when I was holding Lola because that hat is ginormous and could block the sun from her too. Ha!

She had her own floppy hat, of course. Not only is this a cool camera angle it’s also the best way to drop drool bombs on mom while dad snaps a photo. Good thing momma doesn’t mind one bit.
Heck, I’m usually the one drooling over her. ;)
Collin was definitely in his element there! Sure, he can’t pull his wakeboard tricks like he used to: An Air Raley, Hoochie Glide, Bee Sting, to an Oh Really, Batwing but he can drive our Honda Pilot like you wouldn’t believe. ;) The boys in our group had fun showing off for the Go Pro camera. It attaches to the end of your board then you can watch yourself get “sick air” ;) or eat it. haha. But, really, we need that camera. Since I already brought 4 cameras on my trip why not an uneven 5?

Meet Annie. My darling, talented neighbor who is also hilarious… she invited us to their house boat with 2 other families… and clearly we had a blast!
I’m sure you will see more of her in the future since, she can sew circles around me, she is going to take me under her stylish wing and we are going to work on some summer sewing projects.

how to make cake jars

I can hear some of you cheering through my computer screen since I am finally posting this recipe. I got a bunch of emails where you cute ladies wanted to make this for graduation, showers, birthdays…! So as promised here’s the cake jars that my sister & Emily made for my birthday party! Photo by Jefra Starr Linn

· Make your favorite cupcake batter recipe. Then spray your cupcake pan thoroughly with cooking spray – don’t use your liners so you’ll have a nice fit in the jars once your cupcakes are complete! Fill each hole about 2/3 with the batter.

· After your cupcakes have completely cooled on a wire rack, bag them in freezer Ziploc bags and freeze overnight.

· Slice frozen cupcakes in half. Place the bottom half in a jar, pipe with frosting, add the top half, and pipe the top.

· Seal the lids (add your favorite scrapbook paper or a photo of the person of honor on each lid ahead of time.)

· Tie spoons to the side of each jar with twine.

· Refrigerate until party time! Yum!!!

Let Emily make custom cake jars for your next party. Email Emily at if you’re local in Utah.

somewhere far from home

Last night we got home from our family trip to Lake Powell with our awesome neighbors. It was just what we needed to refresh from the busy-busy day to day.

As amazing as it was, I love the feeling of coming home. I had to laugh when I laid my head on my own pillow. Collin hollered from the bathroom while he was brushing all the road-trip sweets off his teeth, “What’s so funny?” I think I was just so happy knowing I wouldn’t be sharing a sand-filled bed with two little kung-fu monkeys. ;)
Hope you had a nice Sunday!
PS For those of you who asked the wood circles for the Memory Game: diy are from a local store in Utah, Roberts Craft.
PPS If you like to shop at Ruche as much as I do everything is 15% off today and tomorrow. (code Memorial15)

Art Kit: diy

Along with the memory game I posted on Wednesday I put together an art kit for both girls on our trip. The contents:

1 Art Journal: full of construction paper, pages from coloring books, cardstock, flash cards and other fun stuff. I will show more of the inside when we fill the pages.
3 A stamped fabric bag to hold it all
4 Watercolor
5 Journaling Cards and tags
6 Markers
7 A wood circle I painted with chalkboard paint + chalk
8 Paint Brushes (To paint rocks. the paint is in my stash. :)
10 Gluestick
11 A glassine bag full of chipboard shapes, foam heart and paper flowers.
I was seriously giddy putting this together! I might steal it from Avery on our vacation. :)
Which wouldn’t be nice since this will post on her birthday! (love you avery girl! I don’t know why I just wrote that since she can’t and doesn’t read my blog. But maybe someday she will.)

wood memory game: diy

A simple memory game I put together for our trip this week. It’s perfect for the sand but keep it away from the water. I tried it out and the girls loved it. Seeing all of the faces of the people they love and trying to find the match! I was going to make one with the alphabet I will have to do when I get home.

It’s easy peasy: Just paint the wood circles then attached photos to the other side.

There’s a fabric bag I stamped to keep it all together.
All the colors remind me of summer!

xoxo lizzy

right now

Right now:
1 We are sitting on this big, comfy, glider chair listening to the thunder and rain.
We purchased this chair for one reason. Clearly, that reason was not for its beauty… but more comfort AND most importantly so I could hold more than 1 girl at once. It was nice when I had Quincey because I could hold both girls & then when we added Lola to the mix we’d all four be on this chair reading books and falling asleep at bedtime. Avery would sit on the arm. It was nice especially if you have kids close in age.
2 Getting ready for this girls birthday.
3 Planning our trip somewhere with lots of sunshine and no computers and cellphones. Yes!
4 Enjoying teaching my classes at Something Splendid.
5 Working on products for the next Dear Lizzy line.
6 Dreaming of the above number three.
7 Dreading making a dentist appointment for my toothache. Why do I have the worst teeth?
8 Dying to chop off my hair. It’s time.
9 Thrilled that despite my brown thumb, our garden is sprouting corn and the raspberries are a foot high.
10 Laughing at Quincey asking me over & over & over if she can put on her new “swimming soup” from Lime Ricki.

I can play favorites, right?

This is one of my favorite days of the year.

I had gotten home from a meeting at American Crafts and I went exploring outside with Q&A. Since I was not up to lugging my huge camera along for the fun I opted for the easily accessible iphone. I will never regret this decision, because instead of coming home empty-handed… except for the guilt I would have filled my pockets with for being a bad mother and not taking photos (why do I do that?)… I came home with these gems!
The top right one I absolutely am obsessed with because this spring she’s had a circle of yellow all around her nose from smelling those darn dandelions any chance she can get. (And if I’m not mistaken I don’t think those flowers have that great of a smell anyways. ;)
My other favorite is the one of Quincey showing off her double band-aided elbows from running too fast. She gets so excited and eager to go somewhere and her poor klutzy feet can’t keep up with her curious mind. Like I said in my last post… another way that we are very much alike.
(The bottom left picture is from Mother’s day!)
Tell me one of your favorite moments this spring?