Friday, May 28, 2010

Finally Friday!

It seems as though I've made it through another week.  Let the weekend begin!  It has been a long and boring week at work and the most that I can say about it is that noone stole my Diet Coke.  You heard me right, I put a Diet Coke in the refrigerator here and waited all day for it to get cold.  Couldn't wait to get my hands on it at the end of a long day, I was anticipating its' icy cold goodness, only to open the refrigerator door to find that someone had helped themselves to my Diet Coke.  Oh, I was so angry!  I kinda figure if you don't put it in there don't take it out right?  But that leads me to another topic of refrigerator work etiquette.  Why is it that people put food and drink in the refrigerator and then just leave it there?  They don't eat it and don't seem to have any intention of eating it, it just sits there.  It drives me crazy!  I posted a sign on the door asking everyone to remove anything that they may have left in there for any length of time including 'plastic bags, food items and any science experiments'.  Sorry to say it  hasn't worked.  I swear there was a brain in there.  I let it go for a while, but when the thing started to grow a penis I had had enough.  That was when I had to throw the thing out,  plastic container and all.  I figured there were enough men here telling us what to do and messing up the place we didn't need to grow our own! I shudder to think about what their homes must look like. 
So, on to the weekend plans.  Three day weekend.  WoooHooo!   I am so ready for some time off!  Heaven knows I need some down time.  We have a wedding to attend on Saturday in Virginia, but other than that nothing on the calendar.  I am thrilled!  Which is not to say I don't have plans, I do.  I have a lot in mind and I am sure that the time will fly and I'll be lucky if I get a portion of my list done, but I'm going to give it a go.  First on the list I am going to attemp to make some sugar cookies for Bella's birthday party.  They have never been one of my specialtiey, particularly decorating them but I am going to really try because I think they'll look cute.  I'd also like to finish up with the decorations and other plans for the party so that I can be done with it and have nothing to do but set up come Saturday morning.  (In a perfect world!)  I still have the mudroom and bathroom to paint and the basement to organize, though I don't know that I'll even be able to begin those things this weekend.  Of course I do need to get in my nap and a hot tub , maybe take Bella to the pool as she has been so looking forward to that.  There just isn't enough time!!
Oh well, I'll do what I can.  What are your plans?  Picnic?  Backyard fun?  Beach plans?  Staycations?  What are you doing?  I'd love to hear about it!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

It Seems So Silly

But I am exhausted beyond words!  Just that little trip to NJ has me so worn out that I can barely make it through the day.  I fight the fatigue all day long and struggle to keep my eyes open on the way home from work.  When I get in the door, I go right for the couch or chair and immediately fall asleep for an hour or more until someone wakes me up.  I don't wake up feeling refreshed though, I feel groggy and sleep deprived.  It is amazing to me how my body can react this way to something so seemingly minor.  I used to be able to do so much more and then keep on going!  Now any deviation from my routine sends me into a tailspin and I can't seem to get enough sleep to recover.  Last night I was in bed by 9:00 so I missed the season finale of Dancing With the Stars, Idol, Biggest Looser.  Thank goodness for Tivo!
In other news, I bought a pedometer.  I have been curious about how much I walk in a day, particularly at work and now I can find out.  It is simple to work, I just clip it on to my pants and go and it measures each step I take.  I got it through Weight Watchers, so it also calculates how many steps I need to take to add an extra point into my daily point intake, the date, and time, it's pretty handy.  I'm not sure where I heard it, but I know that the goal is to walk 10,000 steps per day.  That seems like an awful lot of steps, but we'll see!  I have noticed that what it does do is make you more concious of how many steps I am taking and by wearing it encourages me to take more steps.  So hopefully it will bring about some good results.  Heaven knows I  need them!  I didn't have a very good week weight wise and it is the first time since I started on my weight loss effort that not only didn't I have a loss, but I actually showed a gain!  I am not going to beat myself up over it, but I am going to try harder this week.  My whole goal is to try to loose weight while continuing to live a somewhat normal life.  Well, as 'normal' as I ever get anyway.
That's all for now.  I'll check in with you all later! 

Monday, May 24, 2010

Monday, again!

Another week has come and gone!  I can't believe that the weekend has already passed, seems like it should just be starting.  Needless to say, I've been  busy again.  Or still.  Oh how I crave a weekend with nothing to do, but that doesn't seem to be in my future.  Ha!  I guess that is a good thing. 
Anyway, we traveled up to New Jersey for the weekend for the Anniversary and Vow Renewal Ceremony of my Dad and his wife Marlena.  They have been married for five years and have decided to make the most of each and every moment together.  I think that it is a wonderful philosophy and one that we could all take a lesson from!  They had about 60 friends and family there to celebrate with them.  It was a beautiful day!  They had a tent set up in the backyard with tables underneath and we spent the day outside, the kids had lots of room to play and the adults had room to socialize, it worked out very nicely.  Jim and Timmy stayed for the day, while Michelle, Bella and I spent the night and shared breakfast with everyone the next morning before we headed out for home.  Here is a picture of the happy couple:

On our way home, Michelle and I stopped at the outlet center in Gettysburgh and did a little shopping.  I picked up an absolutely adorable outfit at Gymboree for Bella's birthday for her.  I know she will love it!  So that was fun, too. 
Bella was so tired when we got home.  She kept asking in the car if it was her bedtime yet, so we knew that she would crash early.  She played hard with her cousins Carly and Michael, met new cousins Katie and Cameron and played with them and was up later than usual.  After dinner and story time she headed off to bed and I went downstairs with Michelle.  While we watched Celebrity Apprentice I worked on the banner for the birthday party and Michelle worked on creating an printing out a Bingo game with Candy.  Here's the banner that I made:
The picture doesn't really do it justice, but it came out really cute.  The colors are very bright and cheery.  While we were driving home Bella tried to gently remind me that her party was now only 2 weeks away and there was still so much left to do.  She was afraid that she was going to make me feel badly, but I was already aware of the clock ticking and how much was left to do!  I'm not worried about it though, whatever doesn't get done, doesn't get done.  It's that simple. 
Jim is working again tonight and it will be just us girls on our own again, so I'm sure I'll be downstairs working again.  The problem is that each time I get closer to finishing up I think of something else to make!  I have to stop that! 
So, I'll keep you posted on my progress. 
For now, here are some pictures from the weekend:
Bella and Katie
Michelle and Tim

Michael and Tim
Bella and Carly

Monday, May 17, 2010

Busy, busy, busy!

Whew!  What a busy, but productive weekend!  It was jam packed with lots of stuff and I feel very good about my productivity level.  Friday after work I was able to spend a little time with Bella before heading out West of town to meet up with the girls to crop.  On my way there I stopped off at the outlet mall for a quick tour of Chico's to see if I could find anything to wear for next weekends afair (more on that later).  I was pleasantly surprised to find that I was down an entire size on the top and bottom and picked up a couple of tops and a nice pair of slacks.  I am officially down 15 pounds and still working on it! Then I jumped back in the car and headed for crop night.  Since I still hadn't located all of my things from my move and wasn't sure where my pictures were, I had decided to work on something that I could locate.  The 'treat bags' for Bella's birthday party.  Her theme this year is Sweet Shoppe and I needed something that would accomodate some trinkets that I had already found, one of which is a good sized picture to color.  Anyway, I was able to find some sand buckets at M's in the dollar section that are a nice size in the colors of the party.  I had been trying to think of how I could tie it in to the theme of the party when I decided to stamp the buckets.  I used Staz On ink and stamped a Bubble Gum machine on one side and a few pieces of candy on the other, colored them in with Sharpie markers, accented them with Stickles and then put 'sweet' above each girls' name.  No pics, but I'll get to it when they are completely finished with ribbons and such!
Saturday was dance pictures in the morning.  What a mess!  Picture this-about seventy girls, costumes, hair and makeup with parents, photographers and siblings in a school that has 3 studios a narrow hallway, a front entranceway and two bathrooms.  Oh and in many cases-two costumes!  Then of course there are the parents who show up late or who show up without the one item that they are required to provide for their child-tights and say they didn't know they needed them!  'How did you know that they were needed? You read it? In that letter that was handed out to all the parents you say? Oh and the teacher told us at a meeting you say? And I was supposed to read and/or listen you say?' Ha! What a mess! 
Anyway, after that we had a surprise, but short visit by our friends Andy & Durinda.  It was great to see them even for a brief time!  Then I hit the basement and tried to make some sense from the madness that was down there.  By midnight I felt like I had made some headway and headed off to bed.
After church on  Sunday we ran a couple of brief errands and then headed back downstairs to get to work on birthday stuff.  With a few weeks to go before Bella's birthday, I felt like I needed to get things in gear, so I was determined to get a move on!  Here's what I got done.
The wreath:
The table centerpiece:
One of the games (think pin the tail type)

Table decor:
And place settings:

I also got about half of the invitations finished, here's a peak:

So, as you can see I worked well into the wee hours and I worked hard!  Some of the things I admit I worked on prior to the weekend.  The gumball felt piece I had completed earlier, and I had started the lollipop topiary during the week but finished it last night.  The invitations took the longest by far!  Working out the wording the size then taking the picture and figuring out how it would fit, then adjusting the text, the stamping, all of it.  Once I figured it all out and got the template down, the rest was just a matter of putting it all together but still time consuming.  It sure was good to be crafting again though!  I'll keep you updated on my progress as I go along.  I have a few weeks to go. 

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Where has the week gone?

It's Thursday already?!  The week has seemingly flown by, I guess that is what happens when you are busy!  Work has been crazy as usual.  I have really been putting in the hours and working hard.  When I get home, there is always so much to do.  I've been trying to get caught up on housework and the ironing, which is always such a pleasant experience, especially as a working mom.  You know I can never just go to the bathroom.  I go in the bathroom and take a seat and look around me and see the dust on the floor or the toothpaste in the sink. I try to keep the Clorox wipes nearby, but sometimes you have to do what you went in there for, so some things have got to wait.  Anyway, my trip to the restroom is never just in and out.  I clean out the sink and scrub out the toilet bowl, spray down the shower and wipe up the floor before I head out.  Then I can leave. If I am lucky, I have used the downstairs bathroom and get to skip an entire floor if not I have to pick up the clothes that Jim has left strewn in his path-he hasn't yet been able to locate the hamper even though it has been in the same location for the last ten years!  I quickly make the bed, straighten up the room, grab any misc. dog toys/bones that may be lying around the room and head on down the stairs, stopping to pick up any stray socks that Roxie may have taken from its unsuspecting mate and lost interest in along the way.  I get to the kitchen and put any dirty dishes into the dishwasher, sort through the paper and mail, put away any small appliances left on the counter, let the dogs out, and take my medicine.  Then, having forgotten that I went upstairs to get the ironing board and the iron, and head back upstairs...
And so I begin the chore of ironing.  Can you see why it takes me so long to get things done!
Tonight, I get the night off though and get to play the role of the proud Grandma.  Not a hard role for me to play!  Bella's kindergarten class is putting on a concert tonight and Michelle and I will be attending.  Jim has to work so wont be able to be there.  Bella is so excited!  She has been singing around the house all week, while she plays, at the dinner table, in the bathtub, everywhere!  Shades of her Grandmother? 
I'm sure that I'll have some pictures to share with you tomorrow, but in the meantime I have a few for you today. 
I may have mentioned that I got a new camera lens for Mother's Day?  Well, I was playing with it on Sunday and here are a few pictures from then.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Weekend Roundup

The weekends are just never long enough.  That being said, I had a good weekend.  It started early on Friday when I left work early.  I've been saying that work has been kicking my butt, well by Friday I had had enough and after getting in and being hit in the face (figuratively speaking) by it again, I called my boss and told her that I was leaving for the day.  She agreed to let me leave, so I took off and started my weekend with a little retail therapy.  I had heard about a scrapbook/stamp store that is about 40 minutes away from me, and decided to go for a visit.  It was worth the trip!  Lots of variety in stamps and scrapping material, nice people, classes, and it was a good distraction.   Spent some time with Bella, took a little nap together, then when Jim got home from work he and I went to pay our respects at the wake of our friends' father.  On Saturday, Michelle, Bella and I hit some yard sales before dance class, but we didn't find anything worth buying.  We then spent the afternoon working on moving some of my stuff down into the basement.  That is when it hit me just how much crafting stuff I truly have!!  Currently, there are piles and piles of stuff on the floor of basement just waiting for me to find a home for it.  My desk is still sitting in the garage and I don't have a big closet like I did in the mud room, so I think that eventually I will need to get another bookcase for storage.  In the meantime, I'm not sure what I am going to do!  The other issue is everything from my old room is pink and or green and that doesn't go in the new rooom which is gold and olive.  I couldn't really paint the room pink or lime green as it wouldn't match the couch, but I think I will have to slowly change some of my accent colors over to match the new color scheme. 
Sunday, I am sorry to say we did not make it to church.  Again.  Jim wanted to take Michelle and I to breakfast for Mother's Day and so we went to Cracker Barrel and enjoyed a nice relaxing breakfast.  After we got home we opened gifts and relaxed around the house for a while before heading out to see the Frederick Keys baseball game. It was a good day for a game, when the wind wasn't blowing it was actually quite beautiful out and warm.  The Keys won 8-2 and it was just really pleasant.  Bella hadn't been and she had a ball, though I think she was more interested in the various food and games than in the baseball!

The only dull spot in an otherwise bright weekend came when my son called to wish me a Happy Mother's Day and told me that he would not be able to make it home as scheduled on Monday.  :(  I miss him as I don't get to see him too often, but I understand that he is working and the stress that he is under. 

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Guess What I Got?

Quiet Time!  Bliss.  Can you believe it?  I got off work a little early because my hip flexor had been acting up and I had been pushing myself like crazy so I decided to kick off early.  I called to say I was on my way home and Michelle told me that she was picking Isabella up from school and dropping her off with Jim who was then taking her to the circus.  Michelle then had to head back to work and didn't know how long she would have to be there.  So I got home to an empty house.  It was strange, I have to say.  I have become so used to someone being around all the time that I am not used to being home alone.  I didn't quite know what to do at first.  So I went upstairs to change and well, it went downhill from there.  Not really.
I changed the sheets on my  bed and cleaned up my room.  Then I ironed the basket of clothes that had been staring me in the face for the last several days and magically growing as I did nothing about it.  I got through the whole basket.  I indulged myself and watched Oprah while I was ironing and it was pretty funny too.  Male makeovers!  Next I went downstairs and unloaded the dishwasher and straightened up the kitchen, fed the dogs and let them outside.  I figured I'd let the dogs back in then sit down and read my book, but Roxie had caught a bird in the yard and wanted to bring it inside with her and I wanted her to leave the poor dead thing outside.  Michelle came home then and was able to get Roxie to drop the bird outside.  Dumb dog!
Then Michelle and I sat down and watched the episode of Biggest Loosers that we had TiVoed (sp) from the night before.  It was the make over episode and it is amazing to me!  Anyway, as we were nearing the end Jim calls and said to meet him and Bella at Poblano Grill for Cinco de Mayo dinner and to bring a camera.  So we did and this is what we saw:
Bella had gotten her face painted by a clown at the circus!  Doesn't she make a cute cheetah?  What you can't see is the glitter.  The best part, is was super easy to remove-that gets bonus Mom points! 
Asked what she liked best about the circus Bellas reply?  "Everything!"  She was mezmerized. 

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Shopping Trip

So I took Bella shopping for a Mother's Day gift for Michelle.  She was so excited, can't tell Mommy!  Where do you want to go?  Let's go to the mall!  What should we get Mommy?  Questions, questions, questions!
So, she had an idea and we headed out in search of this particular item.  Something that she had seen on the tele.  She just knew  her Mom wanted it and needed it.  We went to the store, Kohls and found the item in question and they had it in two color options.  Bella preferred one color and I couldn't find it in Michelle's size.  Silly me, I thought I could just talk Bella into the other color.  No.  Can't you find a guy? she asks.  A guy?  I reply.  Yeah, GaGa, a guy that works here that can find the color I want in Mommy's size.  Oh, that guy.  So, we shlep around the store looking for the guy-finally find him and no they don't have that color.  Only then can I talk her into the other color.  Next stop, the mall.  She wants to go to Sears.  Lands End dept.  So we are walking through the mall and what does she see?  The item that we just bought at Kohls in the color that she had wanted that they didn't have.  Hey!  Can we get it?  She asks.  But I just bought it at Kohls I tell her.  That's okay, you can take it back she tells me.  The kid is way too shopping savvy!  I convince her that its fine and if her Mom wants to make the change she can after Mother's Day. 
So, we get to the Lands End section of Sears and I ask her what it is she wants there.  A new bathing suit she says, Mom likes these bathing suits and she only has one.  I check the price tag and decide that I'm not spending $84 on a bathing suit for her because the reality is, she looks fine in a bathing suit that costs only $40.  Now me, I need a bathing suit that expensive to go out in public in but she is still young, thin and has elasticity in her skin and doesn't need an expensive suit.  Me on the other hand, I have to have an expensive suit just to stay on this side of the law!  (Once I went to the beach in a cheap black bathing suit and before I knew it PETA activists were throwing buckets of water on me and trying to get me back in the ocean!) 
Anyway, I was finally able to convince her to settle for a bathing suit accessory.  Something a little more versatile a lot cheaper.  I paid for it with a gift card that I had and was delighted to find out that I had some left on it when we were done.  Silly me, I thought we were done, but Bella had other ideas in mind.  You see, to get out of the store we had to go right by the children's section.  Bella wanted to try on a bathing suit, so she tried on 5 or 6.  And while my resolve was strong not to give in to a bathing suite for Michelle, it didn't work so well when Bella was modeling them for me.  So I told her she could pick one.  One bathing suit.  "Oh, but they are so cute GaGa.  I can't decide."  While she is trying to decide we see that they are on sale 30% off and she sees this as an opportunity.  "GaGa they're on sale.  That's good, we like sales."   That was it, I caved and she got both bathing suits.  Best part though when we went to the register, they rang up at 50% off! 
Then we get home and she sees her Mom and whispers to me "GaGa, I don't think I want to give that to Mommy for Mother's Day".  Read: I want to give it to her now!  I held off though and made her wait until Sunday.  She's too much!
So then she went swimming in her little pool.
This is one of the bathing suits that she had to have!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010


As promised, some pictures of what I have been up to! 
First, here is the basement:
This is the back wall where my scrapping area will be...
This is a view looking towards the back wall, there is another window next to this one and that door leads to a closet.  A little further down from that door is the exterior door.
This it in the throne room, the castle mural...
and the chalkboard is next to the door.
This layout is of Bella's 5th birthday.  It was a safari themed party.  Michelle thought that it was funny that I did a whole layout of her party and didn't include one other person in it.  Ha!
And this is Bella and Roxie.  The title is a little difficult to read, it says "Sun, Sand & Someone to Love".

Monday, May 3, 2010


You heard me, I finished the painting!  For the time being anyway.  I finished what needed to be finished before the carpet goes in.  I still have to do the bathroom and then the mudroom, but that can wait-for now I am celebrating.  Although my celebrations are pretty boring anymore.  I am too tired and sore.  Ha!  But I am so glad to be done.  I've declared next weekend a paint free weekend!  Not gonna do it. 
So it was a busy weekend.  I did go cropping on Friday night, haven't done that in too long.  What's more, I got a couple of pages done.  I figured that since Bella's 6th birthday is now just a month away, I should at least scrap her 5th birthday.  Started on that.  I also got another random page done from last summer.  I know, I am so behind.  The pages were very basic, but it felt good to do them.  It's been so long that it was almost like starting over.  I didn't have anything packed, couldn't remember what stuff I had or where it was, so I just used the most basic things, but that's okay.  Got them done and that's what matters.  Hopefully I can get some pictures posted soon.
Then Saturday we went to dance class as per usual.  Getting ready for the recital which is going to be in June.  After dance we  headed for Home Depot.  Since it was the first Saturday of the month, Bella was anxious to do the craft because it was for Mother's Day this week.  A lawn chair with a hole in it to hold a small potted plant.  She loves doing those things and the price is most definetely right-free!  I got my last gallon of paint and then we headed for home and I got to work on the basement. 
After I had finished for the day, I was showering and the girls had heard sirens and noticed that they sounded very close so headed out front to investigate.  They saw emergency vehicles turning from our street and walked down the street to see what was going on.  It turns out that on of Bella's little's friends dad's was working in the yard while mom went shopping.  Mom came home and dad was still outside, when she didn't hear from him after a few minutes she went out to say hi only to find him on the ground.  His heart had stopped.  She called 911, and started CPR, neighbors came out to help, but they were unable to get his heart started and he was later pronounced at the hospital.  So sad.  He was 48 and leaves behind a wife and 7 year old daughter.  I've been thinking about them all day.  When Michelle told Bella that he had passed, she looked at Michelle with the saddest eyes and said 'But I prayed!'  She just didn't understand why that wasn't enough. Michelle did a wonderful job of explaining it to her, but it is a difficult concept for a child to understand.  Last night when she put Bella to bed, Bella said that she was going to say an extra prayer for her friend Tess and for Tess' dad in heaven.  Sweet little one. 
Again we are reminded of lifes fragile wings.  How in a heartbeat a life is over, a loved one is lost, lives are forever changed.  Give those you love an extra hug tonight and let them know you love them.  Tell them.  And never forget-Count your blessings!