Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Please help Riley

This story really touched me, because I lost a cousin of mine(6 years old) to cancer earlier this year, and this little girl is the same age as my daughter

Riley Philpot is a 9 year old that is being sent home with leukemia, the doctors can't do anything else for her. She lives in Winterville, NC and according to the doctors, she has run out of options. Her one wish from Make a Wish Foundation she asked for LOTS of letters/pictures to be sent to her home that she could read/look at. If you would like to be a part of this effort, please send Riley a get well card to the address below. She has been battling cancer since 2006 and went into remission, but the cancer has since come back and there is nothing more they can do. I think it would be SO wonderful if any of my friends from other areas would help out, even if it's just a quick card in the mail. Also, if you have friends and/or neighbors that would like to be involved in this effort, please pass this along to them too. Here's the mailing address:

Riley Philpot

206 Slaney Loop Rd.

Winterville, NC 28590

All it takes is a Get Well Card and it will make a little girl feel good about her life. That is something that we all can do for little girl.

You can view her website by clicking here.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

My Happy List

We have been going through alot of crap here recently. No other way to describe it. Mostly financial stuff. So, today I thought it would be fun to make a list of things that make me happy................things that really dont involve money(well, most of them) so here we go:
  1. late night Netflix movies with my family
  2. the sounds of my daughter playing
  3. listening to it
  4. writing music
  5. performing music
  6. playing my piano
  8. making things
  9. journaling/blogging
  10. taking pictures
  11. going to church
  12. dancing in the rain
  13. laughter(its contagious)
  14. the beach
  15. listening to my daughter play piano and sing
  16. Freecycle
  17. learning about other countries and cultures
  18. receiving things from other countries
  19. compliments
  20. a good hair day
  21. cool weather
  22. warm weather(the sunbathing kind)
  23. a good book(although I havent read many lately)
  24. positive TV shows like the Biggest Loser
  25. making a nice meal for my family that wasnt taken out of a box somewhere
  26. SUSHI
  27. The Dallas Cowboys(even though I really dont care for Romo)
  28. The Texas Longhorns.....hook em baby!
  29. the look of a clean house(dont get to experience this too
  30. a good cup of Starbucks
So, thats it. Now time for you to go make your happy list. I hope you have fun.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Weighty Issues

So, this past week the new season of Biggest Loser started. I will be following it, it is always inspirational to me to watch. I really got to thinking alot. All the sob stories. Abby who has lost her family, Shay who at 476 pounds, is the biggest contestant ever. The majority of them all had certain events trigger thier food addicition. I do not have an addiction, I just have a lack of discipline. Ill admit it. I started this year out with the highest of expectations............I have fallen soo short. Everything I have set out to do, every goal I had hoped to complete for myself has fallen by the wayside as far as my diet and loosing weight are concerned. I guess i need to look at the bright side, I have lost 20 pounds, and that is more than i have been able to lose in 9 years.............its not alot but it certainly a start. I have reached two conclusions in the past few days:
I have been fat all of my life. Its a part of me that i am afraid to lose. I dont know if I will like the new,physically improved person i may become because i dont know that person..............Now, i dont think i would go getting all self centered and stuff. I have never been that way, its not me. But what if? I like myself just the way i am..............why change?Other than the health aspects of it, why else?
The second conclusion i have come to is that I dont want something drastic to have to happen to make me get my butt in gear. Being a death or some other form of tragedy................and thats about all i can say without crying...............
I set a goal for myself at the beginning of this year, but what i failed to do was set other mini goals to work up to that goal.So here are a few of my mini goals i am setting up for myself the rest of the year:
no more caffeine(it stunts weight loss) and not to mention it depletes your calcium
exercise for at least 15 minutes once a day(will work up to more gradually)
no eating after seven PM. This one will be the most difficult, I think.
I would also like to knock out breads and pastas. I dont eat a whole lot of them, but when i do, they really mess with me.
These are just a few goals. I have attempted these before and failed. i would do them for about 2-3 weeks and then scratch it off my list and then continue back to the same thing as always.
Wish me luck, as i will you in all of you weight loss endeavors. Together we can do it =D

Friday, September 4, 2009

Jon and Kate plus 8

I have been a follower for the shows Jon and Kate plus 8 and 18 kids and counting for years. Due to recent events, Ive stopped watching them however. I guess they just got old after a while. By now everyone knows about the very public break up of Jon and Kate Gosselin. Its very sad. But,its reality. It happens to people everyday. I, for one saw it coming years ago. Im not taking sides,but Kate, shame on you. The way you publicly treated Jon on TV was horrible. If you treat him like that in public, I hate to see how you treated him in private. Not that i am taking sides. But there were weeks I would watch and literally want to throw something at you because of the way you treated him. That is not how a wife is supposed to treat a husband.............granted, we dont know what goes on behind closed doors, and he may have deserved it at times,but still. In my years of watching, I never saw him demean you or disrespect you in front of the camera. I know life was stressful for the two of you. It shouldnt have been all ways about the kids. Somwhere along the way, the marriage became about the kids and not about Jon and Kate. Your husband should always come before your kids. God first, husband second, kids third, and then yourself. Everyone knows that.Marriage is hard work, and you have to invest time in it, go on dates,put one another before yourselves,etc. I heard , or actually read somewhere that Jon wanted to throw the series out the window years ago, and that you wanted to continue. Ride it for all that it was worth. If it werent for those little blessings, you wouldnt have been able to live it up and go on all those book tours,and eat steak and lobster dinners, and leave Jon at home with the kids for weeks at a time.Shame on you. and shame on you for continuing the series after the seperation. I dont know if that was your doing, but Im guessing it was. Thats pretty pathetic..............I for one think its sad and will no longer be watching.
And Jon, I am getting to you. What are you thinking having a relationship with a 23 yr old girl? Jon, you are still married, can you at least wait until the divorce is final? Sheesh. Would you like any of your girls parading around with a married man at 23 years of age?
So, those are my current annoyances as far as that whole saga is concerned. Im anxious to see Jons interview on tuesday on abc with Chris Cuomo.
I was going to touch on the Duggars, but will save that for another day.

Where I been

I honestly cannot believe it has been that long since I posted. The past two months have been extremely busy. Went to camp with my daughter(see pic above. This is the first time that I recall ever wearing a lifejacket, its not because I didnt care to wear one, just havent ever done anything that required,went to the very first cowboys game in their new stadium(which they won by the way). That has probably got to be the most fun I have had in a long was just like one big, huge tailgate party. People playing frisbee and other games in the parking lot,taking pics in a tricked out suburban(wish I could find pics of it, it was dallas Cowboy everything, right down to the seatbelts),it was just like one big, Dallas Cowboy happy family.
We also got a puppy last month. He was one of those you see people trying to get rid of in the Wal-Mart parking lot. This couple lived in the country, and someone dumped off a batch of puppies right in front of their we took one. he was the first one who looked at us, and now he is ours. We named him Boomer,which at first didnt seem appropriate,but now that hes getting older, the name fits

Other than that,not much else going on. I should be on here more blogging since things have calmed down a bit.................

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Veggie Quest Week 2

So, I am well into my second week of no meat. Did I mention I am not having any caffeine or bread eiether? I have lost about 6 pounds. Not bad in one week......I feel like crap. But "they" say thats a sign that toxins are leaving your body. The tiredness, the achyness, the headaches......suprisingly enough i have not been very cranky. Which usually goes hand in hand with being tired and hungry. Fruits and veggies are pretty filling, who knew?lol.
So, a suprising side effect I have had is smoother skin. My skin is not as dry. I am not sure if this is due to the extra veggies or what, but I like it. It has also been clearer. i have rosacea,which is a reddening skin condition. Here lately, it has been horrible,I tend to look like I have constant sunburn.Even with make-up on, I still get the "oh, we got some sun today" comments. No red skin this week. Not even a little bit. Its weird.Im thinking it was the caffeine.
Can I just say how much i hate scales? Not for the obvious reasons,they just seem very tempermental to Mine seems to have a mind of its own lately. Why yes, rachel, I will weigh you today. Then the next day its "nope, dont feel like it today, sorry. You'll have to come back at a more conveneint time".
So, that it for now, I will try to check in weekly and post about my progress(or lack therof). Hubby and i are going on a mini-cation next month(its like a vacation only and I am trying to lose at least 15 pounds before then, so we will see.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Giraffes for Ola

Ola Helland is a guy from Norway who is trying to collect one million images of "hand made" giraffes by 2011. Besides of a bet with a friend, he's got a deeper reason for this project:

"The giraffes cannot be drawn on a computer since the whole point of this project is to give the digital world a break and let humans be humans for just a little while. People spend too much time in front of their TVs and computers. It's time to create something with your hands! Something you can feel, touch and hold! I don't care how you make you giraffe(s) as long as it's not on a computer. Try being old fashioned for once, it actually is a lot of fun."

"Getting one million giraffes in such a short timeframe is impossible. Or is it? That's what I'm trying to find out. Yes. I know it means that I need about one giraffe a minute. And that I'm not even close to making it at this pace. But at this point it really doesn't matter if I make it to a million. It would be mindblowingly cool if I did, but consider this for a second: There are people all over the world drawing giraffes right now. Isn't that cool? I think it's really, really cool. I think it's very interesting to see how many giraffes I will get, but it's even more interesting and fun to just sit back and look at all the amazing giraffes that are pouring in. Have you looked in the gallery? There's some really amazing stuff in there. So. If you think this is only about reaching a million you've kinda missed the point of the project. It doesn't matter if I make to a million. I really, really want to and I'm still working towards that goal, but at this point it's just fun to see people all over the world turning off their TVs, putting their computers away and sitting down and drawing giraffes. Old school style. People spend too much time being digital. They should try be analog, being human, creating something real (not 0's and 1's) for a change. Most people love it when they try it.

This would be a great summer project for your kids, or even for yourself.

Click Here: One Million Giraffes

Good luck with your project

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Go veggies :-)

So, for the next month or so, I am going to be trying out the vegan lifestyle. Not full fledged vegetarianism,probably the next step down.Right now I am cutting out all meats completely,but eventually I will introduce fish and chicken in small amounts. I am also giving up bread, not pasta, just I will do my best to report my progress here, but I think overall, I will be pretty successful. Today is Day 2.A couple of years ago, i gave up beef and pork completely,and it went really well. I am not sure what happened, but slowly I gave into the burger temptation, and even now I have to have one every once in awhile...........wish me luck

go veggies!!!!!

I wanna be like Mike

Its been a sad, sad week in the world of celebrities. They seem to be dropping like flies. First, it was ed macmahon, then Michael Jackson and farrah fawcett on the same day. Then Billy Mays,the oxi clean guy.While the death of Ed was emminent, because well, he is old, and farrahs was as well,because of the cancer, the other two were not. People die everyday..........some expected, some not. We all have a designated time on this earth, and we all have a purpose. My own personal belief is that we dont die until that purpose is fufilled, should we choose to fufill it, and sometimes we may live long after our purpose has been fufilled.In life, we are just passing through. it is a temporary assignment and test. Life does not end at death. Michael Jackson, as well as the others, will be greatly missed. They will also be remembered. Especially Micheal Jackson. Not because of who he was but because of the good things he did while he was here(speaking of his music). I didnt have the privilege of growing up in that decade,but still enjoyed his music. I cant remember where i was when this song came out or that one(probably tugging at my diaper and sucking on a, like most people can, but I can remember the way his music made people feel................ I am not sure where I was going with that, but oh well. I want to be like Michael Jackson. I dont mean I want to get the plastic surgery and have a pet, although plastic surgery would be When I say that I mean I want to leave behind something great, that people will remember. A legacy.Legacy. let that word resonate within you for a second. What will you leave behind? What will people say about you when you are gone?
Thats all........................

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Mommy Monday

Yes, I do realize it is Tuesday,and am a little late in getting this out.My next blog will be about procrastination, but I think i will put it off until next
This weeks featured mommy is my friend Crystal Allison from Michigan. Our paths first crossed when i was looking for a pen pal for my daughter. She is one of my closest internet buddies, and I even got to meet her a few months ago. Her kids are the cutest, as you can see from this photo.............

Tell us about your family: We are a family of five. Chris and I (crystal) have been married for going on 10 years. We have three kids- two girls and a boy, in that order.

Why did you decide to homeschool: For me, it was a mix of personal reason and religious reasons. Probably the biggest motivator in my mind was situations and people that I had to endure when I was in public school. Some may say "kids will be kids" and laugh it off but for me it was truly hurtful and at times unbearable- yet having no choice in the matter I had to grin and bear it! I decided I did NOT want my children to "bear" going to school, I didn't want them to feel as trapped as I did. I wanted freedom and a love of learning for them that I felt I never had. Also, I wanted God in their lives. Homeschooling gives me the opportunity to incorporate the Almighty Creator in our every day lives and whatever they are learning (that is helped greatly by the way many Christian curriculums are set up!) We don't believe in evolution, yet it is taught as fact in public school. Why would I want my child being taught something that goes against what we as parents believe? We stand firm on our faith in the literal six day creation/ seventh day rest that is presented in the Bible.

What do you feel is the best thing about homeschooling your children: I could list about a hundred things here but I'll try to keep it to one or two. =) For one, my children are comfortable in ANY social situation....whether it be with a group of elderly grown ups or a room full of kindergarteners and younger children. They have never known the segregation of the public schooling system that teaches to only associate with those that are in your "age group". I see a joy and enthusiasm in my kids that I don't see in other kids, mostly because those other kids are just plain exhausted! During the school year they have to get up at 6 am and are expected to spend HOURS sitting in a desk listening to instruction and reading books.....for my kids they get to sleep in some, we can sit in our desks, or relocate to the floor, go outside on a sunny day or even just play a bit before we "do school" so they can wake up fully and be alert. And one more thing, I LOVE that I get to have my kids with me all day! I truly don't understand these parents that dread summer vacation because they don't know what to do with their own child. I'm around mine so much I KNOW their likes and dislikes, I KNOW what kinds of activities they will enjoy, I KNOW what to do with my kids because I've already been doing it all school year!

What is the hardest thing: I do have my days when I just don't "feel" like doing school. On those days its a real inner struggle to make myself be disciplined and just - DO IT! There are other days when I can't wait to get down to it and yet my kids are being less than cooperative. There have been days when we have had to not do school purely because we were becoming too frustrated and it was impeding on the educational process.

Your favorite website(can be homeschool realted or non) and why I'm a huge fan of and - that is where I get all my free downloads of educational material. My girls enjoy - its entertaining to them and helps them to read.

Advice for someone interested in homeschooling(something you wish someone had told you when you first started out) When purchasing material, if you buy a teachers guide that breaks down the material into lessons for DON'T have to follow it can break it up more if need be or you can double what works for YOUR family...they are providing the guide but YOU can tailor it to your families learning style/ability

Something you or your family like to do for fun(include links if you have them) As a family we enjoy going to the beach in summer, we don't make it often so its a treat when we can go. Also, Chris has taken the girls to hockey games before- they loved them and can't wait to go back. Most of the time we just like to goof off at home, play in the yard, or maybe watch a good movie here and there.

*anything else you may like to add :-) Homeschooling is one of the best choices I have ever made! Each year that goes by I fall in love with it more and more....I love watching my kids grow and learn! I love seeing how happy they are when they "get it" in an area where they have been struggling. I love knowing that they are safe, happy, and well cared for- because I am the one doing it for them! God gave me these precious gifts and I get to enjoy them all day long....what could be better than that!

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Friday, June 19, 2009

Crafty Corner : Crafting-Its not just for girls

I am very excited, today is my first edition of crafty corner!!! I will feature different crafters from all over every week who i think have some amazing things that you should check out.
But before I start,a little bit about my crafting experiences. I got the bug about 12 years ago, in my senior year of high school. It all started with scrapbooking, and Ive dabbled with various things through the years, but that has been a constant for me, with little bits of sewing in between...........
Earlier this year, i was introduced to Swap-Bot through a fellow postcrosser . Swap-bot is a community of crafters who swap their handmade stuff, and even things non handmade. I have met such wonderful people through this ite, and it has really made my love for crafting blossom. I have moved on from scrapbooking to making just about anything,but my current love is making stuffies and recycling things into works of art like cds,old records,etc.
But enough about me,every week in my crafty corner, I will interview a fellow crafter...............this week it is Jolene & Alasdair Martin (MadeStuff) from
Leadhills, Scotland. I wanted to feature them this week because they are a husband and wife duo who craft together, and I thought that was amazing...............Many people think of crafting as a girly thing, and that is soo not true.........I smiled when Jo told me about their business because it took me back to a time where my husband and I were dating, and we constructed this doll house made out of popsicle We added little miniatures to it and everything. was it the greatest? Heck, no but it was made with love and we had soo much fun putting it together. We havent done anything like that since,but I think that will change soon.............this couple has really inspired me to go do something crafty with my husband, and perhaps it will inspire you too, to get your husband or significant other involved in a project of some kind...... here we go:

We started crafting in earnest around the end of 2007. It was around this time I found out about and became addicted to Japanese craft magazines and started to make gifts for family and friends. Also, at this time Alasdair became hooked on wood carving and paper crafts. Our house was very quickly getting filled with wood carvings, amigurumi and half finished dolls (yep, I've still not mastered doll making!).

To keep ourselves occupied in the evenings we sew, carve, knit, or crochet. I started to post about my handmade items to my now defunct personal blog and Alasdair was posting about his wood carvings and papier mache bowls on his also now defunct personal blog. It seemed a natural progression to merge our talents into one site. We decided towards the end of 2008 to set up an Etsy shop and started the MadeStuff website to support the shop, which we finally opened in March this year.

Our methods and materials are continuously evolving. I've discovered how easy felt is to work with and don't think I'll ever go back to cotton fabric. Alasdair has spent many hours perfecting his papier mache mix and his methods for finishing his wood carvings. I don't think we'll ever stop experimenting and improving.

Since March we've been on a steep learning curve and are very excited to be in the throws of preparing for our first craft fair next month, which is why our blog hasn't been updated in a few days.

When did you first get the crafting bug?

When I was a little girl I begged my gran to teach me the crafts I would sit and watch her doing; sewing, knitting, crocheting. I always loved crochet and have progressed from granny squares to miniature amigurumi over the past few years. I started sewing again when our son was born almost 6 years ago but wouldn't say the bug really hit until we moved to Leadhills almost 3 years ago. Our house was once the highest house in Scotland and we have amazing views that definitely inspire and we are surrounded by some very talented artists and craftspeople. It's hard not to be creative up here.

What do you consider to be your main area of expertise?

I will always be better at sewing and embroidery than paper crafts, but I'll have a go at anything.

Alasdair works mainly with wood, lovingly hand carving each piece over many, many hours.

How many hours a week do you spend on crafting?

Time is limited due to me having a day job, but I create most evenings for a couple of hours and sometimes all day at the weekend. Probably around 15-20 hours.

Alasdair spends around 30 hours a week on his crafts, although his work is bitty due to waiting for varnish to dry and his thumbs to heal! Hours can vary wildly though whilst crafting around two small children.

You are on a desert island and can only have three items to craft with, what do you have?

Felt, scissors, threads - oh gosh I don't have a needle! Can I have four? Ok, pre-cut felt, threads, needle!!!

Favorite Quote or saying?

Jolene: "You can't stay in your corner of the Forest waiting for others to come to you. ... You have to go to them sometimes." Winnie the Pooh

Alasdair: "arrgh! bugger! ... where're the plasters!" Haha, thats funny :-)

favorite website?

Jolene: I'm addicted to That's my daily muse.

Alasdair: I could spend hours browsing through, indeed this was my first creative outlet and I maintain an account there where I continue to post my work and discuss related topics with fellow deviants, my account there is

Visit our Etsy Shop

Thursday, June 18, 2009

A Change is Gonna Come

So, how do we like the new and improved look? A bit bright for my taste,but for now, its ok. I am starting to finally get this blogging thing figured out, and i am trying to be a bit more creative. Lots of good changes to come, contests,weekly features(more about that in a minute), and a whole ton of fun.
Two of my passions in life are homeschooling and crafting, So a new feature i am going to have is Homeschool Mom of the Week............I will feature a weekly interview from various moms across the US. This may be a bi-weekly thing, it just depends. And this is the most exciting part, at the end of the year, you will get to vote for our first homeschool mom of the year................If you have a mom you know who homeschools who you think wouldnt mind being interviewed, or if you yourself would like to be interviewed, I can be contacted at Im still trying to work the kinks out, but overall, I think it is going to be great :-)
I am also going to feature fellow crafters and their etsy shops from time to if you are a crafter or know someone who is,please contact me or have them contact me. They dont have to have a shop,but it would be nice if they at least had a blog so i can put a plug in for them here:-) and as always bribes are accepted.....roflol.
And lastly, i am looking for others who like to write about stuff, and would like to have it featured here. I am looking to have at least one article a month not written by me.
So, thats it for now,Im excited, and hoping it all works out for the best...........

Thursday, June 11, 2009

90 in '09

Greetings from the world of weightlossland...............Im here to report my discoveries and findings, since it has been awhile since Ive done that. I am a third of the way through to my 90 in '09 goal..............but at this rate I will be happy with 60. To lose 60 more pounds I would have to lose ten each month for the next 6 months,and that is completely do-able but not without torturing myself . I have been pretty sucessful at non torture thus far,giving in to my cravings from time to time.Pizza, Burgers,DQ brownie batter Blizzards, its ok to have these, but in moderation.........Me and the hubs are going to have chinese this weekend,where i will meet with a new love of
So, up until this far I have been semi sucessful without the aide of exersize .Here more recently I have dealved into the world of protein shakes. I got excited when the label said to mix with your favorite beverage but quickly learned that it does not taste well with iced So, i have been mixing mine with good ol' OJ,Sunny D to be more specific. It has a somewhat gritty taste,and for some reason they do not sit well with me. I have a sneezy, sore throat type of reaction going on,so i have to do it in moderation..........
So, like I said, i have done well without exercise up until this point. I recently added some in. I have been scrimping and pinching my pennies for months, and purchased a wii for my birthday, or as i like to call it, exercise in I am totally digging the boxing, probably a little too much...............even my daughter, who needs the physical activity as much as I do is digging it, and has shed a few pounds. Im telling you, whoever came up with this concept is a get your physical activity in while playing a video game, what an idea!!!! I am sure I will grow tired of it eventually,I know right now my body is already tired of I am hurting in places I never even knew existed :-)
Ok, Im back :-) So, I am going to try to get a gym membership next week, and go at least once a week with my hubby.It will be nice to have a pool to go to as well. i am hoping to find a gym buddy. I know several people who go there, so we shall see............He keeps doing the "belly slap" thing as if its some kind of rite of package or medal of husband)
So, thats about all i have to report on the diet/exercise front. For awhile there, I was doing the 6 small meals a day, and if you can swing it, I highly reccommend it,it really does work. I just found it hard to stop what i was doing ever 2 hours to stop and eat.......
Thats it, and remember, if I can do it, anyone can............

Friday, June 5, 2009

Summertime is Here!!!!!!!!

Monday, will officially be the start of summer for us..............if you are like me and have children, you are probably thinking, what in the heck are we going to do with all this free time? Like i said, if you are like me, but unlike me, most people have a life, are vacationing this summer or doing something equally exciting. Might I offer you a few suggestions?
Check your local paper. there are always a ton of things going on for kids in the summertime, whether it be camps, Vacation Bible schools(a personal favorite of mine), or something else. Try this summer camp locator to find local camps in your area. Check your local phone listings and call the churches in your area to see if they are doing anything for the kids this summer. Better yet, if they have a website, go to their websites.You will find a ton of stuff, espcially if you live in an area with alot of churches. There are a slew of day camps, sports camps, music camps,etc.
Do you have a GPS? If the answer is yes, have you ever heard of geocaching ? What you do is use your GPS to locate caches filled with little treasures, and then share your experiences online. You go to their website, and enter your zip, it will show you caches that are nearby. Its fun for the whole family!!!! We are definately going to try it this summer, and I will record my experiences here.
Keep your childrens brains sharp by enrolling them in a summer reading program, Here is a great list of reading programs across the nation:

Half Price Books: Feed Your Brain!
Kids can earn a $3 shopping card each week for reading just 15 minutes a day. Maximize your savings by selling your books back to the store once you are finished with them! Don't forget, you can also sell your magazines! (Sign up instore for this one)

Barnes & Noble Summer Reading will reward kids with a free paperback book when they read just 8 books this summer!

Borders Kids Reading Challenge allows kids to save 50% or more on selected items when they read 8 books this summer!

Scholastic Summer Challenge gives kids a chance to read books, earn points, win prizes and sweepstakes, help a worthy cause and achieve a world record!

H-E-Buddy Reading Club lets kids earn a cool T-shirt for reading 10 books this summer! While you're there, don't forget to click on Clubs & Contests to register for other great clubs for even more fun and prizes!

TDBanknorth will make a $10 deposit into a Young Saver Account for your child when they read 10 books this summer! This offer is available at TDBanknorth locations in CT, MA, ME, NH, NJ, NY, PA, and VT.

The AAPC is sponsoring a Sensory Gang Summer Reading Program specifically for kids with Autism. Upon completing the reading log, kids will earn a certificate of completion and a $25 AAPC gift certificate!

Special thanks to Karrisa for this compilation

So, as you can see, there are plenty of things(besides video games and TV) to keep your kids entertained over the summer. I hope you have a good one!!!!!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Happy memorial Day

Wow, what a week it has been.............Happy Memorial Day everyone. Many thanks to our troops who keep us safe and are fighting for our freedom. Many thanks to the families of our troops who allow their husbands/wives to go and fight for our country. I tip my hat to you. I could never do it.................God Bless You.
Memorial day, originally called declaration day, is a day to honor all of those who have died in service to our country.

Memorial Day was officially proclaimed on 5 May 1868 by General John Logan, national l commander of the Grand Army of the Republic, in his and was first observed on 30 May 1868, when flowers were placed on the graves of Union and Confederate soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery.
What are some ways we can remember and honor our troops? Well, praying for them is a good start. There are also several organizations you can support or get involved in.Soldiers Angels is an organization that features everything from adopting a soldier , making blankets and homemade good, to having virtual baby showers for the wives of the deployed. Check them out, get involved.
Happy memorial Day Everyone, remember to thank a soldier and their famiies while you are enjoying that hotdog

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Free weiners

Wow, has it really been that long since Ive blogged? Got to be more careful............
So, tonight is the idol finale,and i havent commented in over two weeks on this. I am just totally blown away. You have Kris and you have Adam,two polar opposites. Kris totally slid under my radar and several others..............he was the second favorite of alot of people, and because he was the second favorite,he got alot of votes when the favorites got voted off. When Scott got voted off, his fans started voting for Matt, when matt got voted off they started voting for Kris,etc..........all the Allison fans went to Adam,securing his place in F2. And all of Danny's fans will vote for Kris this week, including me...............For the first time in idol history,I was wrong about who the final two were going to be, and I dont have a clue who is going to win tonight. Im loosing my touch apparently. Ive been able to predict it every year until this year. Idol has been pretty unpredictable for sure. I do know one thing. I am pretty sick of Adam. He isnt versatile. He didnt do a single slow, love type song this season. All of his songs were upbeat. And although that is his style,the fast upbeat stuff, it really doesnt show his versatility and the full extent of what he can and cant do. A true artist can sing the phonebook, as paula often puts it..........they can do it slow, medium, fast,standing on their head,on one foot, They can be themselves,not pretend to be someone else. I am not Adam bashing, i like the guy, Im just saying, i dont think he has shown us who he fully is and what he is capable of. Hes wayy too theatrical..........I could be wrong but Im pretty sure Kris was destined for this.We shall see.
So, now moving on to a different subject. lets talk about swine flu. Here we had multiple school districts close for a week or more. Ive been seeing strange things like shopping cart wipes, people carrying hand sanitizer around in their buggies,people in protective white suits with masks(ok, not really, but that would be funny) all seems to be winding down somewhat. Honestly, I dont know why everyone is freaking out over this stuff. Over 12,000 americans die from the actual flu every year.Sometimes I wonder if these health crisis's are government
Well, thats about all i can think of right now.Swap-Bot and My Etsy Store have been keeping me pretty busy.Friday is my birthday so i may write something about birthdays........... boring I know.
Oh yeah, for today only, Kraft is giving out free weiners:

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Idol Musings

I was totally suprised last week by the double elimination,but Im glad we got all of the bad ones out of the way.You had the r and B wannabe and the R and B should be who did everything Now its time for the true talent of the competition to shine.On tonight's American Idol, the top five finalists sang the standards of the Rat Pack era (think Vegas, the sixties, Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr and Dean Martin).

Jamie Foxx was the mentor this week.

Kris Allen was up first and sang The way you look tonight. I cant beleive Im saying this, but I think I agree with Simon when he made the comment that he sounded "wet"

Allison Iraheta sang, "Someone to Watch Over Me" and did pretty well. Once again, I agree with Simon when he says she lacks the confidence to win the compitiion. I am having my doubts as to whether she will make it to top three is really pushing it, but we shall see. My opinion is starting to change about her.

Matt Giraud did "My Funny Valentine" , and sung it really low,too low if you ask me.Judges loved it though, and Simon called it brilliant. I still think as far as genuine talent goes,he by far has it. He has God given talent, and unlike Adam,it didnt come with years and years of practice, it really just kindve comes naturally to him

Danny Gokey performed, "Come Rain or Come Shine" and it was ok. Simon thought it was great. If he wants to make it to final 2, he needs to do better than that

Adam Lambert sang, "Feeling Good" with his usual excellent vocals,but needs to cool it with the theatrics.People are getting really sick of it. I want to see something more toned down,perhaps a love song of some sort.

My pics for bottom three this week are Kris, matt, and Allison, with Kris going home,but you never know what suprises may happen.We shall see.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Dove Awards

Tonight I am watching the Dove awards, and I am going to play online The hour kicks off, with some of the worlds greatest artists doing a "what gospel is" montage. They then give the stage to Kiera Sheard with starts the singing off with her song "Invisible. She then introduces Mary Mary, and they sing a song. i think the name of it is Get up.Then Martha Munizzi and her sister present the award for male vocalist of the year. the nominees are as follows: Jeremy Camp,Jon Foreman, Ernie Haase, Brandon heath, David Phelps,Marvin Sapp, and Chris Tomlin. The winner is ....................BRANDON HEATH.
Next they go backstage to backstage correspondents Lisa Kimmey and rebecca St James,who interview Toby Mac. Followed by Third day with a performance of revelation.
interview with Brandon heath. says he was making sure his legs were moving and accepted this award for all the other talented nominees.

Group of the Year:
Nominees are: Casting Crowns, David Crowder band, Ernie Haase and sig sound, mary mary,Mercy Me, Skillet, Third day. And the dove award goes to..............CASTING CROWNS
such and amazing honor,What he loves about Christian Music is that it doesnt point to itself, but points to something much bigger.
Donnie McClurkin takes the stage introduces Remedy Drive. I am not sure what song this is, but I wish they would have sang All Along. This song is*Its called daylight*

Donnie then introduces Francesca Battistelli, she sings Free to Be Me. I like her.
These are all montages by the way, not the full version, which I was thankful
Donnie then introduces Chris Sligh who sings, what else, Empty Me. Go Chris!!!!!!!

Donnie then introduces Jonathan Nelson, who won three stellar awards this year. I have never heard of him. Donnie likes Got a woot out of him.
Donnie then introduces Tenth Avenue North, I love these guys. They sing By Your Side
Donnie then introduces Addison Road,Im not sure if they are singing cause Jenny just had her baby like last week.
Back to Rebecca St James who is asking people to vote............. I did my voting earlier today, voted for Addison Road, Third Day,and some others who i cant remember.

Can i just say i love the gospel music channel commercials, I dont have to worry about sending my daughter out of the room, or switching the

We're back with another advertisement for the American Bible Study.
Isaiah Thomas and Fireflight take the stage: nominees for urban recorded song of the year. Declaration KF ,get Up Mary mary, Love him Like I do, Detrick Haddon with Reuben Studdard, No Looking back, Not a slave, JR Courtney Peoples. and the award goes to................. MARY MARY GET UP

Chris Tomlin takes the stage. Its estimated that 44 million people sing his songs per week. He sings I Will Rise. Wow, he sounds amazing live, I have never heard him live.Wow, the whole atmosphere just changed. What a treat. I wish they wouldnt have shortened it.

Lisa kimmey asking people to vote again


backstage interview with Mary Mary.. talk about their song

Tye Tribbit, December radio and Canton Jones to present the female vocalist of the year award. The guys joke that they got all men to announce the award, and said they were going to go watch a LifeTime movie the nominees are: Francesca Battistelli, Brooke Fraser, Karen Peck Gooch, natalie Grant, Mandisa, Sandi Patti, Laura Story....and the dove goes to................NATALIE GRANT. She encourages those who are pursuing music not to give up and to keep blooming where they are planted.

Mark harris, Marty McGeehee, and wayne watson take the stage. announce this years receipient of the GMA gospel change award. They present this award to Jars Of Clay, for the work they have done with the wells in Africa.
David Pop Winans was recognized, he passed away earlier this year,father of BeBe and CeCe.
GMA inductees were announced for the year, and these included Dixie Hummingbirds,Larry Goss,Dr Bobby Jones,Dolly Parton, Michael W Smith.
They also recognize 39 dove awards, 9 grammy winner Sandi Patty, who takes the stage and sings We Shall behold Him.
She speaks and acknowledges Dottie Rambo.They do a Dottie Rambo song montage by various artists. One of them includes her family members, daughter, son in law, and granddaughter. They sing mama is teaching angels how to sing. It was pretty.


Brandon Heath sings Give Me Your Eyes , with some really funky dancers in the background. Oh wait a minute, those are the characters in his song, thats pretty cool.

China and vaghn take the stage, with Toby Mac to present the song of the year. You may remember Chynna Phillips from the group Wilson Phillips(I am really showing my age She is in a duo now with this other chick. The nominees are as follows: Amazing grace, my chains are gone Chris Tomlin, Cinderella Stephen Curtis Chapman, Empty Me Chris Sligh,Give me your Eyes Brandon Heath, I will not Be Moved Natalie Grant, Im Letting Go Francesca battistelli, Mighty To Save Ben Fielder(my favorite pic), Never Going back to Ok The Afters, Reason Enough Ernie Haase, You reign, Mercy Me and the dove goes to.....................GIVE ME YOUR EYES Brandon Heath What? You cant be serious.............. another award. Wow,what a good year he has had.He lets his songwriter speak........


Award for new artist of the year, Jeremy Camp and the Afters,introduce the superfan..Alicia Nelson. nominnees are: Addison Road, Francesca B, Fee, Jonathan Nelson, Remedy Drive, Chris Sligh, Tenth Avenue North..........and the award goes to................TENTH AVENUE NORTH. Sweet!!!! They were toatally not expecting it.

Jars of Clay takes the stage,introduces Natalie Grant and she sings. I dont recognize the song,but then again Im not a huge natalie, she is really wailing...............gets a standing ovation



Ok, we are back, they are backstage with natalie grant
AJ Stiles and Grits take the stage........... present the short form video daylight,Fan mail Kj 52, in the valley of the Dying Son, Groovin, Slo w Fade, SLOW FADE BY THE CRASTING COWNS(lol, that was funny, he mispronounced it) Grits makes a shout out to Obama.

Miss California takes center,she gets a standing ovation, not sure why. Presents Mercy Me and they sing a montage of thier songs:I Can Only Imagine, Home.

Sinbad takes center stage,they forget to turn on his
Michael W Smith comes on and presents Steven Curtis Chapman, who sings Cinderella who dedicates it to his late daughter Maria Sue(getting teary). She died last year,for those that didnt know. Got ran over :-(
He gets a standing ovation

backstage with Lisa and rebecca
artist of the year award presented by Willism Baldwin and Kirk Franklin. William jokes that he is the white sheep of the family,kirk asks what does that make Casting crowns, Stephen Curtis chapman, Fireflight,marvin sapp, Third day, Toby Mac, Chris Tomlin.........and the dove award goes to Stephen Curtis Chapman. he comes on stage with his wife. He talks about hope and how that has gotten him through this year. Hope makes us bold,Jesus is coming, he cant come soon enough.

Brinign it to the close, the blind boys of Alabama with mac Powell(what a

Overall, Id have to agree with the Tenth Avenue North Choice, and SCC, but not the others.

and thats a wrap

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Uncle Sam you can..............

Im going to be nice and not finish that sentence.........its ok, Im human.So, tomorrow is April 15th,otherwise known as tax deadline day in the United states. i dread this day to no end,which is why i am writing this blog, trying to avoid the inevitable. I hate having to give the government our hard earned money,knowing that it might go to support something I dont want our funds supporting like abortion,or redecorating the homeland security headquarters.That money that could go to something really important,like a car for me........ Its always a hard time of year, and i shed many many tears. Its espcially hard when i see others getting returns and stimulus's etc, when we get nothing,and probably make way less than these people do.Spending it on frivilous crap like Flatscreens and Nintendo Wiis, it just really makes me want to vomit. Its not fair, but as I always tell my daughter life isnt Its a big shot in the foot, especially this year, all the economy stuff,etc.
Speaking of jobs and the economy, I have been looking for things to do online, and suprisingly I have found some interesting prospects,sadly i havent had much time to look into them,but I will let you know what comes of it..........much to my suprise, there are a ton of companies,well known ones at that, that offer work at home positions.
Not much else to write about. Happy April 15th everyone(not). Do me a favor. Or at least think about it. If you do receive a return,do something nice for someone else,buy them a coke, take them out to dinner. Dont use it all on yourself................remember what goes around comes around, if you spread a little kindness, it will come back to you.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

An ode to easter candy
Because i am bored and have nothing else to do
I just wanted to give a shout out to my absoloutely favorite st( as my dd would say) easter candy in all the world............the ever popular, soo yummy and scrumdidlyuptious cadbury creme egg...........Easter would not be easter without this delectable treat filled with ooey gooey caramelly goodness . It would win an easter candy throwdown against peeps anyday. Who the heck would want to eat a neon chick with no flavor and no center, that is soo boring?lol
and while we are on the peeps topic, here are some pretty hilarious pics i found:
Theres Obi-Peep
Biker Peeps
When we left our intrepid riders . . .

and my absoloute favorite peeps photo of all time:

peep smores2

Until next year cadbury Egg................see you then

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

The orgins of Easter

Before i officially begin this blog, i just wanted to say I am soo happy megan went home. Yipeeeeee. Ok, enough of that. Who do i think will go home tonight? Well, probably Scott, but we'll see.I wrote this on Tuesday evening,but am just now posting it, so looks like i was right

So, this Sunday is Easter. For some of you, its the only day you go to church each year. Others will gather with family, hunt eggs,pay a visit to the Easter Bunny.Some will attend sunrise services, buy new church clothes(Ive got mine, and it is three sizes smaller than what i was wearing at the beginning of the year. Yipeeeeeee), and decorate eggs. After recently receiving some pretty harsh criticism from a few people about taking my daughter to an easter Egg Hunt, I decided to do my research. I have never researched Easter, its just something we, as a family have always done. I know whats its about,the resurrection of our Lord and savior. But still had so many why does the date always change? Well,The resurrection of our Lord and Savior has been celebrated since the discovery of the empty tomb. However, the “official” holiday was declared in 325 A.D. when Emperor Constantine convened the Council of Nicaea. At that time it was determined that the church would celebrate Easter on the first Sunday that occurs after the first full moon on or after the vernal equinox. This is why the actual date of Easter varies from late March to early April every year due to the variances in the timing of the full moon.
The name "Easter" derives from the pagan queen of heaven Ishtar or Astarte, also known by other names,depending on the region celebrating.Ishtar is the goddess of love, war, fertility, and sex. In the Babylonian pantheon, she "was the divine personification of the planet Venus".In every other language but English and German, the name Easter is derived from the Hebrew word pesach for 'he passed over. And what about "easter eggs"? Well, eggs represent fertility,new life, a new beginning.

Eggs are often identified with Easter. Long a symbol of fertility and immortality, the egg reminds Christians of the rock tomb from which Christ arose.

In medieval times, eggs were traditionally given to all servants at Easter. It is said that King Edward I of England (1307) distributed 450 boiled Easter eggs, dyed or covered with gold leaf, to members of the royal household.
Today, in most countries the eggs are stained with plain vegetable-dye colors. The Syrian and Greek faithful present each other with crimson eggs in honor of the blood of Christ.This is where we get dyeing eggs from,but as with all traditions,it has been changed to suit each individual, and now we dye them many colors. Belief among various groups of pagans was that at one time, a very large egg fell from heaven into the Euphrates River. Fishes then rolled it to the bank where doves rested themselves on the egg until it hatched. Inside was said to be the godess Venus (who was also referred in other pagan cultures by other names such as Astarte...). It was also believed that the egg served as an ark in the time of the Great Flood in which the human race was housed inside.The Egg Hunt is designed that who finds the egg/eggs has good luck/new life for the year. Not all cultures hide their eggs. Some give them as gifts and in some European nations they play a game called “egg dumping” where players hit each others eggs and whoever has the intact egg wins. This is also likely why we see bunnies around easter time as well, because they represent springtime and fertility and give birth in multiple numbers. The actual concept of the easter Bunny came from Germany.

The Easter bunny was introduced to American folklore by the German settlers who arrived in the Pennsylvania Dutch country during the 1700s.

The arrival of the "Oschter Haws" was considered "childhood's greatest pleasure" next to a visit from Christ-Kindel on Christmas Eve. The children believed that if they were good the "Oschter Haws" would lay a nest of colored eggs.
So, what do all of these things have to do with the true meaning of easter(or as i like to call it Resurrection Day)? Is there anyway to tie these things into that without taking away the real meaning? More importantly what is the real meaning? Its a serious question. A friend of mine drives a bus. Today,they all loaded up the bus, easter baskets in tow, and he asked them if they knew what it really meant. Only one little girl on the whole bus knew the answer. A recent poll indicates that only about 48 percent of our children know what the true meaning of Easter is.Easter is celebrated to mark the rebirth of Jesus Christ. Jesus was resurrected from the dead on this particular day. Jesus was crucified two days before Easter and that day was known as Good Friday. In these two days, Jesus went through hell and all the sins of mankind were washed away. He died for our sin, so we would not have to!!!
So, in all actuality,in my humblest opinion,and after my research Easter,I would have to say that yes, easter does tie into Jesus Christ's resurrection..Will I continue the traditions i have always done? the easter egg hunting,dyeing,etc? i guess that is all a matter of personal conviction. I see nothing wrong with it, as long as i can symbollically tie it into Jesus Christ's resurrection.I may just dye our eggs only red next year though. I think it is important to find a healthy balance somewhere. I think I am beginning to understand why some people dont celebrate holidays at Im only kidding of course. I leave you with the lyrics to this song, by one of my favorite artists, Mac Powell :
He was pierced for our transgressions
He was crushed for our sins
The punishment that brought us peace was upon Him
And by His wounds, by His wounds we are healed

He was pierced for our transgressions
He was crushed for our sins
The punishment that brought us peace was upon Him
And by His wounds, by His wounds we are healed

We are healed by Your sacrifice
And the life that You gave
We are healed for You paid the price
By Your grace we are saved
We are saved

He was pierced for our transgressions
And crushed for our sins
The punishment that brought us peace was upon Him
And by His wounds, by His wounds we are healed

We are healed by Your sacrifice
And the life that You gave
We are healed for You paid the price
By Your grace we are saved
We are saved

He was pierced for our transgressions
He was crushed for our sins
The punishment that brought us peace was upon Him
And by His wounds, by His wounds we are healed
And by His wounds, by His wounds

What can wash away my sin?
Nothing but the blood of Jesus

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

More Idol Thoughts

So, last week we said goodbye to Michael Sarver. I really thought, based on his last performance alone, that they should have saved him. I wasnt able to watch last weeks performances,so I dont know whether to agree with America or not.
So heres a recap of last night. i will start with who i think did the worst, and who i thought did the best. Worst, hands down was Anoop. I am soo not feeling the whole R and B thing with him, he seems more Clay aikenish to me. He totally butchered that Usher song, and came across as a wannabe.Totally agree with Simons comment. There seems to be alot of that going around. He looked stiff and a little constipated the whole I dont think he will go home tonight, however, because he has a pretty huge fan base.
The best performance of the evening was a tie between Danny and Scott. Danny did an amazing job with what hurts the most by Rascal Flatts. he really captivated the audience,and almost brought me to tears. it was soo hearrtfelt, you could feel the emotion, and really tell that he was putting his whole self into that song. I have to admit, i have been a fan of scotts, but not of his vocals,probably because he is blind, for the most part, but last night his vocals and his ability really shone through with Billy Joel's Just the way you are.
And then we have the rest of them, dear Megan Joy who sang yet another older song. She could have picked anything, and she chose Turn your lights down low,which is a Bob Marley song. Boo!!!!!!!! I like her voice, but her song selections are going to be the death of her.I dont think a stool is her problem, paula. Although, maybe it would keep her from doing that stupid dance that she does.Please go home, Ryder needs you.Song selection seemed to be the downfall of most of the contestants,with the exception of Allison and Kris. Allison just didnt have a great night, and the clothes were very distracting. I love No Doubts Dont speak, and she did a good job, it just wasnt her best. Lil should have done an R and B song, instead she chose a Celine Dion song................she gets points from me because her daughter went up and hugged randy, that was just precious. I think her daughter may have kept her there another week. Which brings me to Matt. I really like him. I should have voted for him. he messed up one of my favorite songs,once again, not sticking to his own personal style,trying to please the judges,etc.At this point, i dont think he has a big enough fan base to keep him around.
Bottom three tonight: Matt, Megan Joy,and megan Joy(oh, wait a I predict Matt will go home,we'll see..........
I probably wont have anymore idol thoughts for awhile,because my Tuesday evenings are going to be occupied, but we will see. If Rachel had her way, this is how the rest of the season would go:
9. Megan Joy
8. Anoop Desai
6.Scott MacIntyre
5.Matt Jiraud
4.Kris Allen
3.Adama lambert(hmm, was that a typo?)
2.Allison Iraheta
1.Danny Gokey

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Oh yeah :-)

When your right,you are right. I was right for the second week in a row.Poor Alexis Grace. Hey, if you want to see whos gonna get voted off, just read my blog. I need to be a judge on the show, i think Ive found my true
So, next week Obama is giving yet another speech(whats up with all the speeches, my goodness), so idol will be on Wedensday. And its motown week......Im only going to get to watch bits and pieces(I dont have dvr.........snif snif).
My top three predictions are as follows: Danny, Adam, and Allison. She will definately be the last girl standing................

Thats all for now

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Country Week on Idol

All i can say is wow. There is some pretty amazing talent on this season of AI. I think after 8 seasons, the judges finally got it right. Its hard to say who is going to go, because they all have some really amazing vocals and loads of talent. Last week, i predicted Jorge and jasmine would go, and i was dead on. This week, based on solely thier performances this evening, I would have to say...............hmmmmm, think Ill wait a minute.
Tonight was country night, with special guest randy travis. I kept expecting someone to bust out with a randy song, but there was no randy Travis Love this evening. I think forever and ever amen would have been cool...........Michael sarver was first. He was the only one, besides Allison to pick something kindve peppy, so he gets big points for that.He also gets cutie points from me.He did garth's aint going down til the sun comes up. Next was Allison, and she did Blame it on your heart by Patty Loveless, a very good choice indeed. She rocked it, my favorite girl for sure. Top three material. Kris Allen did To make you feel my Love, another garth song. OMG it was amazing,this was his best night yet. He reminds me of a 13 yr old, he just looks soo for that reason, no cute points from me. Hes probably my least favorite guy, but who knows, that may change if he continues to do what he did tonight.Lil did a really bad performance of martina's independence day, very bad choice of song for her,what a shame............. My favorite performance tonight, hands down was Anoop. he totally redeemed himself from last week with Willie Nelson's you were always on my was spectacular..........
Last week I had the privelege of hearing danny sing for the first time, and he is by far my favorite. But his song choice tonight wasnt that great. I think Carrie Underwood would definately approve, however.Poor megan Joy, i feel soo bad for her, I hope she gets some rest this week. her voice is starting to grow on me, but she did that stupid dance tonight, and i hate it. She needs to do something more contemporary, she has been doing too many old songs. reminds me alot of Nora Jones........
Adam just really creeped me out tonight with that whole egyptian thing. I did not like it at all. I am starting to like him less and less.He had me at satisfaction,but no more.
So, all that said,my pics to go home, based solely on their performance tonight are eiether Alexis, Lil, or megan Joy. If Lil or Megan gets picked the judges may use their save..........but I think they would let Alexis go.
We'll find out tomorrow.............

weighty issues

Well, now for a bit of happier news. I thought I would give a report of my weightloss journey,since I havent updated in a little over a month. I am right at 20 pounds, which is a little less than I had hoped for, but it a good start, and halfway to my short term goal of 40. Saturday I was going through the weekly ritual of trying on clothes to wear to church the next day( a thing I purely despise, not church,but figuring out what to wear, since half of my clothes dont fit right),when I spotted THE DRESS, you know the one I had mentioned I was trying to fit into? Well, I figured I would give it a try. Why not? So I slipped it over my head,and it actually went past my neck this This looks promising. So i continue and Viola!!!! To my suprise it actually fit!!!Now, I am not to the point where I am comfortable going out in it, but just the fact that it fit was huge for me,it means that what i am doing is paying off!!! Such a wonderful feeling.So what have I been doing the past few months? I guess i will spill the beans, i had wanted to keep it a secret, just in case it didnt work. I have been taken the drug Alli, which is an over the counter dose of Orlistat, which is prescribed by doctors for weight loss. Alli is about half the dosage of orlistat that the doc would prescribe. I must admit, I was expecting greater results, but that is partly my fault, because I didnt exercise as much as i should. My supply is beginning to diminish, and i am contemplating if I should get another bottle or not. I'm not sure if I want to do that. beacuse its soo darn expensive.I think alli is perfect for those who have maybe a pesky 15-20 pounds they need to lose. But if you are like me, and have way more,its not the best way to go. But what it will do is give you a boost. Thats really all i was hoping for when I got on it.In addition to that, i have just been watching what i eat,absoloutely no pork,fried,or beef. Yuck. Its amazing what you can live without if you really try. So, this week, I added a little change to my diet,if it works, i will tell you what it is.Ive already lost 2 pounds in a day, so i think its going the thing i really wanted to say though, is that if I can do it, anyone can!!!!! I am probably the most undisciplined person i kow when it comes to diet and exercise. But all it takes is a few minor changes.... You can do it :-)

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Better to have loved and lost, than _________

I apologize for the lack of uninteresting posting the past several weeks. This month has been a whirlwhind. We have experienced three deaths in the family, 2 of them taken by cancer. One of them a 6 year old girl. I consider myself to have a pretty good concept of death,we all die, we dont die until our purpose here on earth is fufilled,and we eiether go to heaven or hell(yes,there is a hell, and there is a heaven). Then there are other cases of death,which I beleive are caused by pure evil,things that we cannot see, and I beleive that this was one of those instances.........I could open a whole other can of worms,but I will not go there. Thats another blog post. I do know one thing for sure, Selena, my grandmother, and Aunt Wanda are in heaven now, and pain free. Selena is probably eating tacos with Jesus :-) . She doesnt have to suffer anymore. I am not a death expert, that is something no one has the answer to,why people have to suffer and die. But I do know one thing. One day, we will get to see them again in heaven,that is, if we make the choice to go there.I also know I cant walk around feeling guilty about the "should haves" I should have called more, I should have prayed more, I should have done something more. Because the reality in any death situation is that it doesnt matter how much we did for this person,we would have always felt like we could have done more. Its part of the grieving process. Thats pretty much all I have to say for right now. I leave you with the a picture of the bravest little girl I have ever known:

RIP Selena Barajas March 27,2002-March 14,2009

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Wildcard Picks

So, it is wildcard night on American Idol, and here is who your judges picked:

Von Smith
Jasmine Murray
Ricky Braddy
Megan Joy Corkrey
Tatiana Del Toro
Matt Giraud
Jesse Langseth
Anoop Desai

Im not at all happy with the choices right now, and I really think Ju'Not and Felecia, and Kristin should have been considered.I would love to pick the judges brains . Its not at all a vocal competition, but a popularity one, and that is becoming more and more evident.

My pics for wildcard:Anoop,Matt, and Jesse, but we all know that wont happen.I really hope Megan doesnt do that dance thing again.

So, who will finish off the final 12? We will soon find out.........

We'll see how it plays out, Im afraid to even watch.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Idol Thoughts Week 3

Since my dreams of auditioning were shattered this year, i figured blogging about idol each week would be good So i am going to try my best to do so. I have a pretty good track record of picking who is going to win every season, I started watching season 4, and so far am 3 for 3. Here ar my thoughts on tonights final 12. By the way, i do not like how they have done the voting set up this year. Boo!!!!!! They should have stuck with the original 24 thing. The new voting system doesnt give several of the really good ones a fair chance. Now that Ive said my peace, I will share my thoughts for tonight:
I was right on last week(except for Cris), with Adam and Allison,so we will see.........
I predict America will send the following on:
Scott,Lil Rounds, and JU'Not

Rachel's picks are Scott,Kristen,and eiether Felicia or Ju'Not
Wild card predictions: Jorge for sure, and any of my other favorites that may not make it.

I didnt catch the name of Vons song, but I know it was marvin gaye. That pretty much sums up his

Taylor-very Demi Lovato-ish. I cant beleive she sung the same song that she did in Hollywood,thats not very smart. Not to mention that song has been beaten to death with the idol contestant beat-up stick(sorry, couldnt think of a better Good song, its just been done way too many times. Go home sweetie :-( And whats up with Karas shopping comment? What does shopping and personality have to do with good vocals?lol

Alex- Oh my goodness, this guy is just, well, um, weird. I loved Simons Old hamster trying to be a tiger comment. I would say he has more of a gerbil like Elton, poor Elton.

Arianna aka "Button girl"- Abba? Are you kidding me? Why would a 17 year old pick something like that. Bad song choice. She had a few nice runs in the middle though.........

Ju'not- I liked him, my prediction is that he will be this seasons Chekeezie,but better. They have to have a black man in the group, I think its a general

Kristin- I liked her, very distinct quality to her voice. What was up with all the fashion comments? I thought this was idol, not Project Runway. I think she looked fine.

Nathaniel- you know, i actually kindve liked him, and he was on my list,until I heard the rest of the guys, then he got knocked down.Way down. I thought the meatloaf choice was interesting. It was a little dry,however,and did not leave me hungry for more.

Felicia- I am really glad they brought this girl back. Shes on my list. I know it must have been hard for her to leave her baby(and LIl Rounds to leave hers as well). I didnt like the song choice, i dont think it showed off her range very well. But like she says, everything happens for a reason, and i am hoping she comes back.

Scott- I have really enjoyed him since day one,hes different and unique. He has a very Josh Groban like quality to his voice............he did not dissapoint tonight.

Kendall- Honey, this is not Nashville Star. It was very pitchy. But she looked great,loved the dress.Very Kellie Pickler-ish.Texas is not very well represented this year,oh well, thats what they get for not coming here.........

Lil Rounds- I really like her. I loved the call the show if you want me comments she put in the song,very clever.I like the fact that she has three kids and is a mom, unlike alot of the other female r and B singers out there. I guess, for me personally, i am just looking for something fresh and for someone whose style hasnt been done 1000 times over. i think it would be cool to see her do a country song and make it her own.

Jorge Nunez- I personally didnt care for him, had great vocals, very Marc Anthony, I think he will be back on the wild card show.

My wild card predictions for next week: Kai Kalama, Jorge Nunez,Mishavonna henson, Matt Giraud,Anoop, and Stevie

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

The Buzz

A few months ago I stumbled across an awesome site, where people sell their crafts. All excellent high quality stuff. if you are looking for a perfect gift for that special someone, you can find it at Etsy . Not all of them, but a good majority are work at home moms, so when you shop there, you are not only receiving high quality handmade items,but you are supporting(in most cases) a work at home mom as well. I set up my own store several months ago,Im just a little slow at getting things started.
I recently got really into cupcakes for some reason. Why, i dont know, they are just the cutest little things...... I went on an etsy mission to find some cupcake items, and was not dissapointed. I stumbled upon something amazing: jewelry made from old scrabble tiles. You can find these little treasures at Kelly's Etsy Store . They are interchangable, and she has one to fit any kind of taste. I was very impressed, it even came shipped in a cute little organza bag. She also has her own website Bumblebeadzzz .
So, everyone be sure to pay her a visit and buy some of her stuff. I know Ill be back. Thanks Kelly :-)

Friday, February 13, 2009

Happy Valentines Day !!!

First off, I am happy to report that I have lost close to 22 pounds since I posted my diet blog. This is the littlest I have weighed since my daughter was born,almost nine years ago. So yeah, I am happy about that. Strangely enough, I still cannot fit into that dress,some parts of me are taking longer to lose than
So, this weekend, i am selling flowers at a flower tent, to help kids go to camp. I have done this for the past two years. This weekend, as you also know is Valentines Day. I always hated this day growing up,probably because I never had anyone special on this day. Luckily my Dad was born on this day, so i always had something else to is the purpose of this day and here did it originate from? Why all the flowers and chocolate? Have you ever wondered that? Well, today it is my mission to answer those questions for you.
Its funny how when you first get married, you want the flowers and the chocolate,the dinners, the romance. Then the longer you are married the more practical you become. You ladies know what I am speaking of. For example,what do I want this year? Flowers? No, they just die. Chocolates? Nope, they make me fat. I want the most romantic of all gifts: a vegetable Cant get much more romantic than that. And that is after ten years of marriage, I can only imagine what kinds of exciting things my heart will desire in the years to silverware, perhaps? Or how about a nice,romantic rain Better yet, how about doing the laundry and dishes for me, that would send me on cloud nine. That is because acts of service is one of my love languages. What is a love language,and do I have one, you might be asking. Sure you do, and you can take this short quiz
to find out what it is.
So, how did this holiday all begin?

No one knows for sure,it remains a mystery,but here is the story I like the best: One legend contends that Valentine was a priest who served during the third century in Rome. When Emperor Claudius II decided that single men made better soldiers than those with wives and families, he outlawed marriage for young men — his crop of potential soldiers. Valentine, realizing the injustice of the decree, defied Claudius and continued to perform marriages for young lovers in secret. When Valentine's actions were discovered, Claudius ordered that he be put to death. In some stories he was sent to prison, and according to one legend,According to one legend, Valentine actually sent the first 'valentine' greeting himself. While in prison, it is believed that Valentine fell in love with a young girl — who may have been his jailor's daughter — who visited him during his confinement. Before his death, it is alleged that he wrote her a letter, which he signed 'From your Valentine,' an expression that is still in use today. Although the truth behind the Valentine legends is murky, the stories certainly emphasize his appeal as a sympathetic, heroic, and, most importantly, romantic figure. It's no surprise that by the Middle Ages, Valentine was one of the most popular saints in England and France. Pope Gelasius declared February 14 St. Valentine's Day around 498 A.D. The Roman 'lottery' system for romantic pairing was deemed un-Christian and outlawed. Later, during the Middle Ages, it was commonly believed in France and England that February 14 was the beginning of birds' mating season, which added to the idea that the middle of February — Valentine's Day — should be a day for romance. The oldest known valentine still in existence today was a poem written by Charles, Duke of Orleans to his wife while he was imprisoned in the Tower of London following his capture at the Battle of Agincourt. The greeting, which was written in 1415, is part of the manuscript collection of the British Library in London, England. Several years later, it is believed that King Henry V hired a writer named John Lydgate to compose a valentine note to Catherine of Valois.

In Great Britain, Valentine's Day began to be popularly celebrated around the seventeenth century. By the middle of the eighteenth century, it was common for friends and lovers in all social classes to exchange small tokens of affection or handwritten notes. By the end of the century, printed cards began to replace written letters due to improvements in printing technology. Ready-made cards were an easy way for people to express their emotions in a time when direct expression of one's feelings was discouraged. Cheaper postage rates also contributed to an increase in the popularity of sending Valentine's Day greetings. Americans probably began exchanging hand-made valentines in the early 1700s. In the 1840s, Esther A. Howland began to sell the first mass-produced valentines in America.

According to the Greeting Card Association, an estimated one billion valentine cards are sent each year, making Valentine's Day the second largest card-sending holiday of the year. (An estimated 2.6 billion cards are sent for Christmas.)

Approximately 85 percent of all valentines are purchased by women. In addition to the United States, Valentine's Day is celebrated in Canada, Mexico, the United Kingdom, France, and Australia.

Valentine greetings were popular as far back as the Middle Ages (written Valentine's didn't begin to appear until after 1400), and the oldest known Valentine card is on display at the British Museum. The first commercial Valentine's Day greeting cards produced in the U.S. were created in the 1840s by Esther A. Howland. Howland, known as the Mother of the Valentine, made elaborate creations with real lace, ribbons and colorful pictures known as "scrap"
So there you have it ,thats the story Im sticking with.

More Valentines Day factoids for you:
What are the most popular gifts?
  • Roses rank number one.Red rose, which is commonly associated with passion, a pink rose, commonly associated with appreciation and sympathy, and a white rose, associated with friendship & peace. are popular gifts on Valentine's day.
  • Last year Valentines Day spending topped 17 billion in the US , and it is expected to stay the same, possible even a little lower this year.
  • The average consumer will spend 102 dollars this year,down 20 bucks from lasy year according to a national survey.
So, however you spend your day, I hope you have a Happy one surrounded by those that you love. And always remember,you dont have to wait for a holiday to do something special for the one you love.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Its a Hit :-)

I am going to share recipes on my blog from time to time. Today instead of the usual hot pocket or lean Cusine that I normally have for lunch, I got a little adventurous and made some Italian Sausage soup with a recipe I got from Cooking Light Magazine. Heres the recipe:

8 ounces hot or sweet turkey italian sausage
2 cups fat free chicken broth(I used rachel ray's stock on a box)
2 cans diced tomatos with basil, garlic, and oregano
1 cup uncooked small shell pasta
2 cups bagged baby spinach leaves
2 tbsp grated fresh parm and romano cheese
2 tbsp fresh basil

Heat a lg saucepan over medium heat.Remove casings from sausage.Add sausage to pan,cook about 5 min until brown and crumbled.Drain and return to pan. Add broth, tomatoes,and pasta to pan, and bring to a boil over high heat. Cover, reduce heat,and simmer 10 minutes or until pasta is done.Remove from heat and stir in spinach until wilted.

I think it was a hit :)

Tomorrow I am going to write an actual

Monday, February 2, 2009

Project of the week

From time to time, i am going to post different projects that I am working on,products Ive tried,books Ive read,or recipes Ive attempted to make(notice i said Recently, i got introduced to the world of ATCs. What are atcs? well, they artist trading cards, about the size of a baseball card,little pieces of cardstock decorated with whatever:buttons,lace,ribbon,paint,etc. The idea is to trade them with a bunch of people, and put them in a binder as you would a sportscard. It sounded like fun, and i am always up for a challenge, so i decided to take a crack at it and this is what i came up with. I have decided to devote a few hours a week to crafting, since it is something I really enjoy. I figured it would help me destress a little. Hope you like.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

To go or not to go, that is the question

Today I will continue my discussion on new years resoloutions. I am going to talk about going to church(Dont roll your eyes, I can see you through my screen, you know who you made the top ten,so apparently it is worth discussing. I have been fortunate to be an active part of a church all of my life,and for this I am very thankful. So the question that is in my mind isnt why go to church but why not? If you dont go to church will you go to hell? Absoloutely not, that is absurd. If you are a christian and beleive in God, is going to church a requirement? No, it is not. Well, why go then? This is an excellent question and I will try to answer it to the best of my ability. I am soo thankful that we have freedom of religion in this country,and we dont have to do what we dont want to do. Religion, or lack therof, is never forced on us. It is up to us, and no one else whether we want to follow God or not and attend church. We are all born with free will,this is true. We are also born with a hole in our hearts,that we , as people, are constantly looking for things to fill, whether it be material posessions,drugs or alcohol,sex, knowledge,etc. These things may fill the void for a short time,only leaving you wanting more.material things of this world can only satisfy for a short amount of time. This leads me to my first reason why we should go to church,and that is to be closer to God,to meet with him, and allow him to fill a void that can only be satisfied through spiritual, not material means. What did you say? if I were to look up hellion in the dictionary, your picture would be there? You've done too many wrong things in your past, and dont feel you would be welcomed? My friend, that is where the love of God steps in,it is unconditional, as all love should be.
My second reason for going to church is simply that we need to be around good people. Positive people who we know we can go to for anything,whether it be a shoulder to cry on or prayer. Have you heard the saying you are or you become who you hang around? If you hang around eagles, you'll become an eagle, if you squawk with the turkies,yep, you guessed it, eventually you will get served up for Thanksgiving dinner(ok, that was a really bad analogy, pardon, but you get it, or at least I hope you do.People need people, good people. Not people who are going to drag them down, but rather, build them up. Several years ago, i went through a really, I mean, really rough time in my life. I am soo thankful for the freidnships that were formed through that very difficult time in my life, friendships that i have still to this day. Friendships that were found at my local church,not at a local bar, or at the shopping mall. I hope you get my point.
My third and final reason is rest. Im not talking about the physical rest. I am talking about the "I need a break or I just might pull all of my hair out or kick and scream until i turn blue in the face kind of rest". You know, a mental break. Moms mental health day, i like to call Matthew 11:28 says "Come to me all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens and I will give you rest". I know for me, personally,when I go to church(and I always, it really sets the week off on a positive note for me. I leave feeling refreshed,renewed, and like i can take on the world. It really helps my attitude and destresses me. It affects the way I treat my family,it affects every part of my life, on a positive level. And in most cases, its free childcare....roflol (I am totally kidding, although that is a definate plus ). Not only do I notice how it affects me, but I also notice the positive effects it has on my family as well.
So, if you have been thinking about going, then what are you waiting for? I dont normally do this, Im not sure if anyone even reads this, but if you need help finding a church in your local area, i would be more than happy to help,just leave me a comment or something.
Have a great week, see you next time................