December Daily, catching up

Cathy ZielskeScrapbooking26 Comments


I wanted to post the pages I've yet to share, doing a little catch up for my December Daily.

Here are the days:




This next page is a scan of the top of a box of Shiny Brite vintage ornaments I bought at an antique store in Stillwater, MN, over the weekend. There is something so cool about 1950s graphic design.





Dan and I spent a weekend in Stillwater, MN, a little sleepy town on the border of Minnesota and Wisconsin, set on the St. Croix river. There was such a whirlwind of emotion for me this past weekend. In fact, when I look back to the December 13 page, my heart aches. How much we need days of normalcy in our lives. You know?

One of the things I decided to do was to get an Elf on the Shelf for our house. I'd asked the kids if they thought it would be fun when we were out last week at Barnes & Noble. They both echoed a resounding, "NO!"

But the next day I hatched a plan to go and get one, and leave them to find him when Dan and I were in Stillwater.

I left Aidan with a standard list of things to do: water the tree, bring in the paper, check the mail, etc. But I left the first note from Malachi (yes, that's his name) in our mailbox, to be found a few hours after we left town. The note was from an extremely bitter elf, who knew he wasn't wanted and just his luck, as he decided to come to our house anyway, found himself in an extremely sticky situation. (He was blindfolded and trapped in the dryer.)

Suffice to say, Malachi was a hit.

The kids were left with a challenge to one up the parents and create their own paper trail of elf-dom so we could come home and search him out as well.

Aidan took it to the next level.

She went online and got ideas for posing him. She created an Instax clue trail, complete with some serious riddles we had to figure out to unearth all of the clues. In short: it was totally awesome and she was giddy with excitement over the whole thing.


I put all of the notes and the photos into a little glassine pocket from Paper Coterie that was part of a Christmas card I received.

Each photo spelled out one letter of the key word that would help us find our poor elf.




We found him laying quietly on our basement wine rack.

My heart was about to burst, just at the fun and the joy created by my teen-aged girl.

So much to be thankful for right now. So very much. 



I've thought about a song that I posted once before here on my blog, years ago, a song by Everything But the Girl, and while I know this will pull on your heart strings, I feel like in addition to sending love and hope and prayers to these families, we owe it them to try our best to stay with their pain and their sorrow.

So they can know in some tiny, infinitesimal way, that they are not alone. 

I've thought of having children
But I've gone and changed my mind
It's hard enough to watch the news
Let alone explain it to a child
To cast your eye 'cross nature
Over fields of rape and corn
And tell him without flinching
Not to fear where he's been born


It's time to hold your loved ones while the chains are loosed, and the world runs wild.



Cathy ZielskeDecember Daily, catching up

26 Comments on “December Daily, catching up”

  1. #1
    Chris H

    HaH! We got an elf on Friday too. We’ve been having a bit of fun with ‘Joy’. I wasn’t too sure about the whole thing until yesterday my daughter said one of her friends commented that they got one and it was boring. It just sits on the mantle. She proceeded to relay some of the silly things she reported to her friend Joy has done.
    Makes me happy that sometimes the goofy stuff I come up with is actually making memories for her.

  2. #4

    I am typing this from sunny New Zealand, at work, with tears in my eyes! Great post Cathy especially that last sentence …. I am also a huge EBTG fan and those words are very true! Christmas wishes to you and yours from me and mine. Take care out there ……….

  3. #5

    EBTG are awesome. I still have my 99pence Cherry Red album from before they got HUGE. Do u know they have twin children? Just so u know they did change their minds.
    So sad for all u guys in the US after last week.
    Jo xxx

  4. #7

    Cathy, I have really enjoyed your Daily December and Project Life posts this year. Can you share some of your favorite fonts for these projects? Thanks!

  5. #8

    Love that you can still have fun with the elf even with teenaged kids. Mine are younger and love ours and fully believe in the magic… but just this year my older one is starting to question whether the elf is real. I love that you’ve shown you can still have tons of fun with the elf whether or not they “believe.”

  6. #9

    Sounds like the kiddos had tons of fun with the elf!!

    Thanks for sharing the stuff you do – especially in the last few days. I really love how you string words together in a real way that expresses the way I guess a lot of us are feeling right now. Yet it’s eloquent rather than bumbling. Reading your blog helped soothe the jumble of words in my head…. just thanks for being you I guess – and putting it out there for the more bumbling among us. šŸ™‚

  7. #11
    Kendra B

    What a great post!! Lots of fun going on with your family šŸ™‚
    I spent the past weekend crying a lot and being very clingy to my son šŸ™ He didn’t understand why, but was very good about it.

  8. #12
    Nicole B

    It’s so nice to see that you are starting new traditions with your family. I love that you guys are doing the elf on the shelf thing with all/mostly adults in the house. What an awesome new adventure for you guys each December.

  9. #13

    Hi! Great post – and definitely a week to be reflective & grateful for sure. One question, are the stars on your journal cards stamps or digital? Do you have links for either? I’m obsessed with stars, especially during the holidays. Thank you!

  10. #14

    Love your pages Cathy! YIPPEE you got an elf, soooo cute and fun this was to read. I almost got one for my teen kids this year but wasn’t sure they would love it. Now of course I wish we had one. Putting it on next years list! Glad you and Dan got a night away even during this sad time. Keep up the good work on your DD!!

  11. #15
    Stephanie Howell

    I love this post Cathy. I love your family…and I feel that we will be a lot like y’all when our kids are older. i LOVE how you have fun.
    also? love your heart.
    love YOU.

  12. #18

    Awesome elf story!! That’s really awesome you found that box of shiny brite ornaments, I have that same image [though in an olive tint] in my december daily [you can see it on my foundation pages here: though mine was part of a Tim Holtz paper pack [it’s filled with all sorts of awesome vintage looking holiday things, my December Daily is full of them. That’d be really awesome to have the story behind actually finding it though!!

  13. #21
    Lauren Hershey

    I know you usually post your products used but I don’t see it here this time…I’ve been looking for those little sticker tags that have the thread sown through them on your bridge picture?…can you tell me what company produced those? Thanks.

  14. #23
    Lauren Hershey

    Thanks! I had seen them a few days ago at Archivers and then saw them used in your DD, so went back and spent twenty minutes looking all over for them but couldn’t find them, and the Archiver gals didn’t know what I was talking about. I’ll have to make another stop back by. They look like they would work great for Project Life, too.

  15. #24
    Kris Van Allen

    I love that photo of the lift bridge. It brings back sweet memories for me. My husband and I grew up on Hudson, so Stillwater was definitely part of our stomping grounds, and such a lovely little town.

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