Andrea's blog



In conjunction with the political t-shirt web site that Ben launched in April,, Ben just released this very cool interactive photo mosaic he calls: Obamosaic. (cool name, huh?).

When you go to the web site, and mouse over each tile, you can see the different Obama t-shirts available. For those of you who are into the political scene (I'm not actually), this is such a cool way to browse the designs and pick a tee to support your candidate.


I suppose he'd make one for John McCain too, but apparently republicans don't buy quite as many t-shirts....

Check it out...and by all it to your friends, post about it on your blog, myspace, or facebook, and help support the Steeds (ooh, you thought I was gonna say support Obama, didn't you???!) :)




While driving around the Lake of the Ozarks, Missouri I noticed there are such cool signs everywhere. While we were waiting to take a boat ride yesterday, I went for a quick walk to capture some of the signage. I have no idea what I'll do with the pictures now, but they were just too cool to pass up! Here's a collage of a few that I collected:


 And, since the one holding the camera is rarely in ANY of the pictures from the day, I was lucky to have my mom with me who could take a photo of what *I* did today. :)



The Canon Family

While on vacation this week, I noticed that our entire family all has Canon cameras and they're all working overtime. So here's the Canon family photo (taken with a self timer on the bed, facing up...that's right....Grandma and Grandpa's bedroom at the condo has a mirror over the bed!)




Tagged by Carol - A to Z

I was tagged by here ya go:
A Attached or Single: married nearly 8 years to my high school sweetheart
B Best Friend: Ben
C Cake or Pie: Apple Pie!
D Day of Choice: Friday
E Essential Item: jeans
F Flavor of Icecream: mint chocolate chips
G Gummy Bears or Worms: worms
H Hometown: Carbondale, IL
I Indulgence: tanning bed
J January or July: July
K Kids: Ayla
L Last movie I saw at a theater: PS I Love You
M Musician: I listen to a lot of Raffi lately...don't know that it's my favorite though.
N Number of Siblings: 2 brothers, 2 sisters
O Oranges or Apples: apples
P Phobias or Fears: my teeth crumbling and falling out
Q Quote:Life is 10% of what you make it and 90% of how you take it.
R Reason to Smile: My job lets me take naps.
S Season: Spring.
T Tag: Betsy, Tiffany, Alison, Patricia
U Unknown fact: I've seen every episode of Beverly Hills 90210...but you probably knew that.
V vegetarian or oppressor of Animals: I really like hamburgers. What can I say?
W Worst habit: picking
X Xray or Ultrasound: Huh? I suppose I'd prefer an ultrasound.
Y Your favorite food: does guacamole count?
Z Zodiac sign: Aries

Calendar Journal

Almost 5 years ago, my sister in law Janel asked me to make her new baby's first year scrapbook.  Normally, I'd say no way, but since she's as ultra-organized as I am, I knew it would work out just fine.  She kept a monthly calendar and jotted down little notes about Tucker as he grew and changed throughout the year.  Then we included the calendars in the scrapbook. 
I thought the idea was so fantasic, I used the same concept for Ayla's First Year album.  The calendar journaling has become a habit, and even now, I keep a daily calendar of stuff she says and things she does each day.  It's a great way to remember all those little things.  Thanks Janel for a great idea that's easy to keep up!
I just use a table-based calendar that I made in Microsoft Word and type my notes in each day.  Yes, sometimes I forget...but my blog helps me fill in the gaps!  This morning I realized I was two and a half weeks behind, so I spent about 30 minutes filling in.  But now I'm caught up again.  Feels good.  

Recent Craftiness

We had Ayla's "friends" birthday party today...a few weeks early, but that's because we wanted her friends to be able to make it before they start traveling.  These were her invitations.  We had a garden/daisy theme... 

 And late last week, I finished this painted wood sign project up for my good friend Betsy's birthday.  She and her husband are coffee enthusiasts, so it was a perfect match:





The Alphabet from "A" to Zoo

I finally finished the cover of Ayla's zoo book tonight.  Well, let me restate that...I re-finished the cover of Ayla's zoo book.  My original attempt was an awful mess of mod podge and vellum.  I like this version much better.  It also is coated in mod podge (as are the inside pages) so that little hands can touch and turn the pages as much as they want!
Ayla absolutely loves this book (and shows it off when we have company) and now is able to recognize almost all of the animals and say their names without me saying the names first. 
and Ayla's favorite animal...the hippo (aka..huppo): 
Thank you to you ladies who have provided elusive animal letters for this book!  If anyone else has a photograph for animals starting with any of the following letters that they'd like to "donate" to the cause, let me know!  We're still looking for:  J, N, Q, U, V, and X

Alterered ABE

For Mother's Day a few weeks ago, I made my mom a set of altered wooden letters.  We picked them up at a Goodwill store in Destin on our Spring Break trip, so I figured it was time I made them and sent them to her!  I ran across the picture I took of them and thought I'd share...
  • Basic Grey Patterned  Paper
  • assorted buttons
  • Mod Podge
  • red cardstock
  • ribbon by Chatterbox
  • sandpaper 
6 Modelsearch: What do YOU think?

So, I'm reading my Parents magazine today and on the cover, they mention their cover-model search. When I get to the page with the rules, I see that all it takes to enter is a digital photograph of your gorgeous kid that you can upload to their web site. Well I have lots of those...and I do get stopped everywhere I go with people saying how adorable Ayla is.
But, I don't enter...not yet anyway. Mostly because Ben would kill me if he found out I did something like that without talking to him. But, he's a good check-point for me to really think about my reasons for wanting to do this.
They make it so easy...just upload a photo and forget about it. If you make it to the finals, they'll let you know. In the unlikely case that she is chosen, we get to go to New York and have a photo shoot and she has 15 mintues of fame. So why not, right?
There are two ways to look at it (okay, probably a lot more, but whatever):
First, the downside: My fear is that uploading a photograph of my daughter to the contest, I've taken the first tangible step towards exploiting my child by using her image and likeness to win something (that she likely wouldn't even remember...) Isn't that wrong? A matter of principle? I'm not sure....
Then the upside: Typing that out, I think it sounds ridiculous...after all it's just one photo, and if I'm not all about getting her into modeling or start some kid-career then it's really not that big of a deal and in the end would amount to nothing, right? Maybe it's just for fun, send in the photo and see what happens. If by chance she won, we'd get to go to New York and we'd all have a fun memory from her childhood. If she didn't even make it to the finals, then what harm was done, right?
So...anyhow, I'm torn...and curious.
What do you think about cute-kid contests like this?
(please note this is not the same question as "should we enter?")

Remarkable Differences

My new lens is here! My new lens is here!
And what do you get when it arrives during naptime and I'm the only one home? Self portraits, of course! :)
Here's a comparison of the same pose, camera held at arm's length, no editing, no flash, no tweaking, different lenses:
Me likey! :)  Let the photo-taking commence....
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