This is something I love to do. My dream someday is to get a nice DSLR camera, set up a sutdio in the pole barn, and start a photography business. I love doing it. I actually took photography classes in college...developing and all. Loved them. In the meantime, I use my point and shoot at fun angles and a little Picasa fun. Someday I will have my dream....someday. In the meantime, I play.
This is my original taken this summer at our family photo shoot. This is probably my most favorite picture of all time.
And the edit:
I actually like both of them, but the latter seems to be a little warmer- especially if I'm doing a lot of browns, blues and tans in the house.
Ok, friends...this is going to be a quickie. FYI: This momma is tired. Totally sleep deprived. (Almost past the point of newborn-sleep deprived....except without that sweet adrenaline rush you get just home from the hospital. Well, perhaps there was an adrenaline rush in there somewhere....like a holy-crap-my-kid-can't-breathe-and-is-looking-at-me-with-scary-bug-eyes adrenaline rush).
The family has been hit by a little cold, but for C. (my respiratory babe) its never just a cold. It hangs on until it mutates into the scary Muppet Show Monster..you know, the one with the big fat lip?
Yes, well, the monster reared his ugly head at 1am on Sunday morning in the form of a breathing/barking toddler crying for his mommy.
A few hours of steam in the bathroom and cold outside air, his breathing had calmed to get him to sleep...until 4:45 where it went to barking to inhale and wheezing to exhale. So, into the steam we went and then a little Albuterol treatment- which did little to help his breathing, but REALLY gave the boy a crazy demeanor for the rest of the day.
An after-hours Dr. office visit later (upcharges, cha-ching!) , a steriod shot (STAT) later, and a Dx of acute bronchilitis, he's improving. He hasn't slept more than a few hours at a time- which means I'm not sleeping at all. So, in the meantime we're doing 3 neb. treatments a day- which I don't really think help the breathing a ton, but give him the spidey powers to climb the walls and hang from the ceiling. Have I mentioned I'm tired?
Yesterday, during C.'s short nap and while Dave had A. occupied on some science project, I ran quickly to the grocery store. This had to be the craziest 30 minute trip I've ever had in any store. So, before I forget all about it, I'm making a Not Me! Monday post about all the craziness that ensued. Enjoy.
I did not end up entering the store shortly behind a guy who quickly ran to get in front of me only to slow down once we were in the automated In-door corrale. He did not reak of cigarette smoke. I did not instantly nickname the rude gentleman, "Smokie."
I did not make a bee-line to the produce department only to see a two year old throw a tomato at her mother. The mother did not respond to this behavior by doing nothing and leaving the broken nasty tomato on the floor.
I did not turn right around to see a woman spill about three bags of grapes all.over.the.ground. She did not run over about half of them by wheeling her cart through them. Only then did she decide to pick half of them up (including smashed ones), put them back into the produce bags and certainly she did not put them back on the display of grapes for sale. Not at all. Common sense clearly states that a little sticky germ-infected floor dust is an awesome selling point for fresh produce. Why bother any kind of employee from the establishment- especially the one standing 8 feet away cleaning out an apple display. Nope, a dust-free apple display is much more important than e-coli infested grapes.
In the deli, I did not see an employee walking by me cleaning out his ear...with a key. Cause, you know...nothing says 'clean ear' like some shaped, grinded steel. He then, wouldn't think of cleaning off that wax-ridden key on his pant leg. Nope! Not this guy. Nothing says, 'wipe ear-wax here' like an Arizona chino.
And later, I was not accosted by Smokie's stench when we was walking so slowly in the back of the store that I almost rear-ended him. At which point, Smokie did not let out the loudest, longest, nastiest fart I have ever heard. On top of the noise and stench, he certainly was not bouncing to shake it all out. I was never so grateful for being able to hold my breath for a long period of time- as I was at that moment. I did not decide right then and there that the grocery experience was over for the day. Who really needs milk anyway? Not me!
So, I'm going to bid you adieu for a few days while I take care of my little one. This is his neb treatment from last night- all cozy in his little sleeper. I took this picture to keep him occupied during the treatment. He likes to look at the pictures after I take them, and will sit very still for me while looking.
By the way, notice the NEW couch?!?!? Thanks to Monica and Joe, we have an almost new (AND FREE!)couch with hide-a-bed! Love it! The hide-a-bed sure came in handy last night with C.'s sickness- he needs to be inclined while sleeping and kept flipping himself in his crib. So, he and I bunked out.
Here's one of my favorite de-motivational poster. This post is dedicated to my brother- who as a youth- probably tried something like this with his friends Jon, Allen and others (scary, their names escape me at the moment).
It's Friday! And while I often forget to support my blogging friend on 5QF, I'm totally up for the challenge today! These are fun questions.
1. What is better, growing old with out money or dying young and wealthy?
Hands down, old without money.
I'm not a total worshipper of all things money. I don't respect a lot of clothing labels and the NEED to have them. While some do have a higher quality, I'm not the type of person that must have them in order to gain some sort of confidence of acceptance. With that said, not worrying about it DAILY would be nice.
2. Who takes out the garbage at your house?
Dave. Unless its...um...you know, that time. In which case, I usually grab the bathroom garbage before he can get to it.
3. Have you ever had the same dream many times?
I had a crazy dream both times I was pregnant that I was pedaling a big wheel across Lake Michigan. I know...blaming it on the hormones.
4. Can you play a musical instrument?
Well, I can play...but the real question is am I any good? Um...no.
5. If you owned your own store, what would you sell?
Probably like a Bed Bath and Beyond type store...or a craft store. Those are two places that I love to spend extra time.
I've been awarded. I'm loving this award- I love the meaning of it and the graphics with it.
Big thank you to Sarah for this one. Not only do I love Sarah for awarding me, but she is just an awesome person with a great heart! Not to mention, I'm still totally giddy from her "pregnant with twins!" announcement! What an awesome miracle!!!
Here are the rules that come with this award:
-Thank the person who nominated you for this award.
-Copy the award &; place it on your blog.
-Link to the person who nominated you for this award.
-Tell us 7 interesting things about yourself.
-Nominate 7 bloggers.
-Post links to the 7 blogs you nominate.
Ok...7 interesting things: (does it have to be interesting? can it just be random?)
I know 23 people that are pregnant or adopting this year. That.is.crazy.
I start a new nutrition class on Wednesday, and am dreading and looking forward to getting back on the scale. Yes, both...at the same time.
I think more of my friends should blog (yes, you...if you're reading this and do not blog, get to it!)
I eat corn once a week just to see how quickly I digest my food. (I know, I know...tmi sorry)
I am horribly clumsy. Dave calls me "Grace" more than "Sandy." I have bruises on my knees and hands from a fall before church on Sunday to proove it.
I love funky socks, and personally feel you can never have too many of them.
I cried while watching the movie, "Up" during family pizza/movie night last Friday. Seriously, totally tugged on my heart strings.
Ahhh, yes. After a small week-long hiatis, I must come back to Not Me! Monday.
I did not make it for 10 days without sugar only to succomb to temptation this morning when C. wrestled me to the ground, pinned my hands down and forced me to eat a mini-Reeses heart. He then made me chew it and massaged my throat until I couldn't help but swallow. Yes, my 2 year old is just that strong. No, I am not my own worst enemy. And tomorrow doesn't start another Day 1. Ugh.
I am not about to make a long, well-thought out post on the dire straights of my furniture situation. I do not live in squalor, and would never use sarcasm as a way of dealing with this crap. Nope! Not me! Somethings are not a laughing matter, and clearly, living room furniture is one of them.
I did not spend last Saturday searching out a love seat on Craigslist, driving an hour to get it and bring it home- only to realize that I hate it. I did not think that visiting someone's house with a horribly stuffy nose would inhibit me from smelling the barfy cigarette smell that permiates their abode. Dave did not spend 3 hours on Saturday afternoon with a steam cleaner and the love seat only to have me come home and freak out. I did not pick a fight with him to deflect the fact that I was horribly angry with myself. I never rush into decisions, and I never regret them. I am not relisting the loveseat on craigslist with an ad worded as follows:
For sale: slightly faded loveseat with fold out bed. Dude, you guys, this one reaks. I purchased it a week and a half ago and just brought it into our addition. It totally stunk the place up in about 30 minutes. I want it gone a.s.a.p. So, if you're looking for a used loveseat w/ pull out bed, and you suck on cancer-sticks....well, this puppy is for you.
I have a friend on facebook from way back when. He was actually my brother's friend first. Then my brother left for the Air Force. Anyway, we stayed in touch and occasionally saw a movie together or went shopping. Funny enough, I haven't seen him since our wedding- but do stay in touch on fb. He's a hunter and grizzly and funny...and totally a bachelor- so he has a ton of inappropriate motivational posters on his wall....but I find them hilarious. Everytime he adds one, I usually crack up (some are just gross, though). So, anyway, I found a site that I can pull from. I figured I'll post some funny ones on Fridays as a guilty pleasure- so you can enjoy *snort* them too.
This is not a sunny Sandy post. Feel free to not read...its kind of more for me than it is for you. But, if you'd like to laugh along...feel free.
***Disclaimer: I am not myself today. :)****
Aunt Flo is coming. The is the first month I've ovulated since C. was 6 months old. NOT trying to get pregnant- just nice to know that my hormones are starting to head back to "normalcy." However, this PMS thing is kicking me in the bootie.
Today is my day to drive the car pool kids. I never shower on these days. Which I don't get because this is also the day that I run errands....you know, since "I'm out and about anyway." So, I'm the dirty, unkept lady with the dirty-faced toddler still in his pajamas without makeup (me, not the toddler) in front of you at the grocery store.
Speaking of grocery store...today I ran into my second person paying for a basket FULL of groceries with a bridge card (welfare in MI) who was texting on her Blackberry and treating the cashier like crap. Total crap! I bit my tongue...because I really wanted to say, "Hang on, lady! You need to be nice to him because his WORKING butt is paying for your SCHLEPPING one to eat!" Even if she was paying in cash...or American Excess Gold Card...that cashier did not deserve to be treated the way she treated him. Grrrr.
I am currently on day 6 of sugar withdrawl. This, in and of itself, is my biggest problem. I hate being addicted to sugar...but I hate being without it. I was told 14 days is what you need to stop "needing" it. Yeah...8 days left. Oh my. Wish me luck. Better yet, wish my family luck.
I now know 22 people that are pregnant and/or adopting this year. This, by far, does not make me want to have another one. I think I need a better water filter.
I've been scouring craigslist for furniture for our addition. The bathroom downstairs is near completion, and he SHOULD be working on the rest of the trim work soon. Spring is starting to look very busy with large jobs (Praise the Lord!), so I'm praying hard that he gets a lot done on the addition between now and then. Even if it means paychecks of the shrinky-dink kind. I found a bolt of fabric that I love for within my budget and ordered it today. I cannot wait to see it. I'm planning on reupholstering an accent chair for our family room. The chair that I lined up to purchase (w/ ottoman) may have been sold from under me. Need to get my deposit back from that chump.
Why the heck don't people delete their post when they've sold something on craigslist?!?!?!
Seriously...one of my biggest pet peeves...
That and older women that wear their hair in pig-tails and think its cute.
Yeah, its not.
I think C. is addicted to Altoids.
I need to pick up A.'s 6 year old pictures from the protrait studio before I pick up the kids at school. Of course, the studio is all on lunch from 2-3....who goes on lunch from 2-3?!?!?!? Are we in Europe? I'll be cutting it close...but must go.
The questions for this Friday's 5QF are fun, so I'll join in! You can click here to visit my friend's site- the creator of it all...
If you want to participate, copy the questions, answer them and post! You can also link up on Mama M.'s page if you want... but not manditory. :)
1. What's your "comfort food"?
Sugar, sugar, sugar. I'm actually in day 2 of sugar detox...not my favorite state of mind. Ugh. 12 days to go before I'm free of sugar! I noticed that I bacame a little surly last night. Thank goodness Dave went to be early (he had to plow at 1) so he didn't have to deal with me. :)
2. Do you send Thank You's (handwritten or email)?
Yes! Handwritten, thanks. I was raised old school....and old school I shall remain. :)
3. If you had to be trapped in a TV show for a month, which show would you choose?
That's easy....The Biggest Looser. Although, I'd like to be on it for more than a month....but I'd take what I could get.
4. What is your favorite online recipe site?
cooks.com Dave and I will occasionally go on there and search for a recipe with ingredients of whats left in the fridge. Many of them can be easily modified to make gluten free. Either that, or Rachael Ray...love her cooking.
5. If you had to choose: "Friends" or "Seinfeld"?
If I were in collage, I'd say "Friends" but now I love "Seinfeld" more. Kramer cracks me up.
I'm not that great at follow through, and my attention span is one of a gnat.
But, there's a few things that I've been wanting to improve for a while now, and there's a few friends that are working on it as well
(yes, I'm a sheep...baaaaa)
so with a little help from my friends- here's a few things that you'll be able to help keep me accountable on:
1. Get the house clean and organized. My bloggy friend, Clean Mama, has put together a challenge of Zone Cleaning. Four zones of your house- and divide those zones into quarters. Every day set the timer for 15 minutes, clean your quarter for that time. When the timer goes off, you're done. She describes it better than I do- you can check her out here. But, my first zone is my work area (which, in Love Shack terms is just part of the kitchen....but WHO'S COMPLAINING?!?!?!? #*#$^@)#$(#@*;! NOT ME!). So, this is my before picture(s).
2. Make a schedule. For just about everything.
I'm disorganized and tend to fly by the seat of my pants.
While this may be fun and "adventurous" to some, it really doesn't bode well for my family (who are VERY schedule based). One of these areas of work is on dinner preparation. I have a pantry full of half-meals and non-perishibles, but nothing to show on the kitchen table for them. I was making the same old non-balanced meals simply because I failed to think about dinner until 4...ish. :)
So, here's my plan:
At the end of every month, I sit down and write out a plan for dinners for the entire next month. (The list #74!) Some fill-ins are easy- we have family pizza/movie night every Friday and on Tuesday nights I have a nutrition class and get weighed, so the boys eat a nice pasta meal- since I'm not dining with them. There's a few standards that we eat once (or twice...) a month- hamburgers, roasted chicken and tacos. Then, I pick ONE cookbook (for each month) from my (dusty) cupboard and start leafing through. I find ones that look good and write them down. Every 5 days I leave a night for left overs or a yo-yo night (you're on your own). Here's my Janurary:
By the way, the Taste of Homes Quick Cooking books are some of my favorite- lots of pictures, easy recipes and cheap ingredients.
Why only ONE cookbook, you ask? I'm keeping it simple. It's not fun to make a grocery list if I have to dig through six books. In addition, I figured this will be a great way to weed through my current books. If I can't find many great, balanced meals in one book- it will get pitched. Next month, I'll pick a different book- perhaps some recipes this month will become staples next month...but if I can't do them from memory, they will have to wait until this cookbook comes back to the top of the rotation.
I'm hoping this will help me stretch our grocery budget- instead of having to increase it this year. So far, we're 5 days into the new year and I'm really enjoying it. I can prepare some things ahead so its not so crazy during the "witching hour" (4-6pm), and I tend to enjoy dinner a lot more with my family.
3. Get healthy. I took a nutrition class (and weight loss challenge) last fall, and will be taking it again this winter. There was so much information in this, it blew my mind! This time I'll be taking notes, doing some additional research and hopefully sharing some things that I've disvocered with you on my blog. Why the additional research? Because I don't want to regurgitate something that someone else says. I want to make it my own and really gain some understanding of the things I learn. (The list #28!)
4. Pray more. After my 15 minutes of cleaning, I'm going to be setting aside a few minutes to just sit quietly in prayer. I need to do that more, and have been missing the connection with my Father. In addition to that, I'm hopefully going to be more mindful to think of him more often as I go about my day.
5. Update y'all on the list! Looking throw there, there's a lot that I covered last year and never blogged about...ugh, sorry 'bout that. So, consider yourself forewarned- a long update w/ pics coming soon!
There's a few others in there...but they are small...so I'll start here.
HA! Yes, we'll start the New Year of blogging off to a great start with a little Not Me! Monday post! How sweet it is. Click here to see the creator of this carnival and what everyone else has not been doing this week/month/year.
I was not dreadfully embarrased when my toddler not only took off his coat upon our arrival at church yesterday, but his shirt as well. While it should have bothered me that I had a half naked child in the sanctuary, it did not. I was more embarassed by the amount of ink pen scribbles all over his tummy that I was unable to scrub clean in the bath. I certainly do not leave my toddler unattended with an ink pen. I have proactively taught him that coloring all over himself is not acceptable. And, my son knows the meaning of modesty- especially in church.
I did not let my toddler drink the rest of the sparkling grape juice that we used on NYE. I for sure did not allow him to drink out of the bottle. The following picture was never taken.
I would never allow this. Not only am I not contributing to a predisposition to alcoholism, but I'm also certainly not allowing a social faux pas like drinking directly out of the bottle. This kind of parenting ensures delinquency. Something I definitely do not do.
(And his cap is really not crooked. He does not look like a total thug here. Glad this never happened and the picture was never taken. Geez, some people.)
I did not take down all of our Christmas decorations on the day after Christmas. I was not sick of looking at them after only having them up for three weeks. I did not feel like a grinch while quickly tossing everything I could into boxes while C. was napping. I do not move like the wind while he's slumbering simply because I'm too tired and lazy to chase him around. I am not a lazy person by nature. I do not hide events- like the dismantling of Christmas- which would leave them completely perplexed upon waking. Nope not me!
I did not promise my husband a massage if he would go to the store to pick up some brown sugar. Agan, I'm not a lazy person. Nope, not me! I would never dangle something my husband loves in order to get out of heading to the store. He did not totally fall for it. I am not still grateful for that. I'm totally not trying to figure out how to get him home from work and run to Costco for me this afternoon.....
Our couch is not in dire straights. Not only is the material ripped and gashed (which have been slip covered), but now a few springs have not totally busted. I am not trying to convince my husband that this now means God wants us to purchase a new couch. I am not totally obsessed with finding a terrific deal that we can fit into the envelope budget.
I am not bragging that I now have 14 friends and family expecting in 2010. Well, ok...perhaps I am bragging! And that's just up through July! I am totally excited for these families...and even more excited that its not me who is pregnant! (Really, its not!)
Ok, as of yesterday, all Cricut gifts have been delivered...so, here's my unveiling.
Remember when my brother and his family were in town this summer and we had our pictures taken by my photographer friend, Renee?
Well, I loved a few of the pictures....I loved them so much that I made them into gifts.
Here are my two absolute favorites:
So, then I had to make them into gifts:
Then, I had to play off my dad's hat for the next one. Everyone knows my dad's felt hat. Everyone.
Each of his grandsons are wearing his hat (or one identical to it- it is a long distance collaboration, of course) in each picture.
Then, to my friend, Erika, and her girls who are always playing games (especially Memory):
I took out their last name- since she doesn't list it on her blog. But, it does begin with a V. I pulled all kinds of old pictures from my memory cards from birthday parties, baptisms, or just getting together. I made 38 cards to match. I actually didn't have any pictures of her husband or brother- so I offered to add them if she'll send me the pictures.
And my absolute favorite....
(Can you tell I'm very proud of the last one?!?!?!)
I was actually watching the Cricut infomercial (twice...in a row) while Dave was hunting. It gave me a great idea for Christmas gifts...
This one wasn't featured on the infomercial. I saw about 2 minutes on glass etching, and my mind took off. I grabbed my 40% off coupon and headed to the nearest Michaels.
And did this:
The white is all etched in the glass and their last name is in vinyl on the front of the glass. Sorry for the light reflection in there, it's not easy to get a picture of transparent glass with auto focus camera.
This will look great hanging on a colored wall- or if they don't have one, they can simply put colored paper between the two glass pieces and have an instant background.
I ended up making one for my mom's principal, but forgot to take a picture- I love that one too!
What I found awesome about this gift was that I was able to really think about these families and what I love so much about them. It's a fun (and awesome!) way to pay someone a permanent compliment!
In spring 2005, we shoe-horned our family of 3 (and a 100 pound dog) into the 780 sq. ft. house. SEVEN years of stuff and another son later, we're in the new side! An unexpected pregnancy pushed our progress even faster, and now the old side has been torn down, and is currently being rebuilt to accommodate our GROWING family! Updates come frequently, so be sure to keep stopping by for new pictures.
1. Have a garage sale.
2. Organize boxes in the garage.
3. Find bunkbeds for the boys for under $100.
4. Expand garden.
5. Get trees cut down.
6. Clean out broken toys from toy boxes and sand box
7. Clean out my sock drawer and discard holey socks
8. Purchase light fixture for front porch
9. Add more sand to the sandbox
10. Spray the yard for bugs
11. Devise a strategy to increase SCRIP use.
12. Meet or exceed weekly audit goal for 4 weeks straight (6/4)
13. Gather information for MOPS crafts and form schedule.
14. Start blog or website for D's D&J portfolio
15. Set up schedule for working this summer and stick to it
16. Find a secondary way to earn additional income.
17. Set up a successful PTL budget with committee leaders in place.
18. Clean out SCRIP boxes- at church and at home
19. Organize work projects into folders
20. Start a prayer journal
21. Refrain from yelling for three days straight (includes boys, dog and husband) (0/3)
22. Think ONLY positive thoughts and say positive things for 3 days straight (0/3)
23. Attend one seminar focused on improving some aspect of my life.
24. Finish the Ministry of Motherhood and apply to daily living
HEALTH & FITNESS:
25. Stick to uber healthy eating plan for 7 consecutive days (no cheating!) (7/7)
26. Work out three times in one week (3/3)
27. Work out 3x/week for 4 consecutive weeks (4/4)
28. Join a class designed to help me learn about healthy living
29. Drink 4 purple jugs of water every day for 7 days (7/7)
30. Research and obtain healthy and effective cleaners for the house.
31. Get A's hearing tested.
32. Visit the farmer's market.
33. Go for a family walk 4 Sundays (1/4)
34. Give up sugar for 14 consecutive days (14/14)
35. Play a game of kickball
36. Give up pop (again) for 3 weeks (3/3)
37. Get my old rollerblades out and use them
38. Surprise my kids once a week for four weeks (1/4)
39. Make decision about A's school for next year
40. Teach A to ride a two-wheeler
41. Assemble A's computer and load educational games
42. Research and order reading cirriculum for the summer
43. Start C's scrapbook
44. Help the boys start their own garden
45. Enroll C in a sport
46. Enroll A in one activity
47. Build a fort with the boys
48. Run through the sprinklers with the boys
49. Visit a zoo that we've never been to before
50. Teach A all the lower case letters
51. Start A on FPU Jr.
52. Find a summer hat that C will keep on his head!
53. Allow A to help me cook/ bake something in the kitchen
54. Help A with his first loose tooth
55. Figure out 5 ways to show my husband I love and respect him.
56. Take a friend out for coffee
57. Send a card to a friend- just because
58. Meet Elliot T.
59. Find someone starting a business and support them
60. Have a friend or family member over for dinner
61. Have dinner with Jeannie three times (3/3)
62. Reconnect with an old friend I've lost touch with
63. Go for drinks with Karen
64. Go out on a date with D
65. Invite 3 friends to the zoo (3/3)
66. Visit the Hulsts
67. Have a family bonfire
68. Visit an outlet mall with a friend
69. Start a family movie/pizza night
70. Have a Girl's night out with Rochelle
71. Take A on a mommy-and-me date
THINGS I SHOULD ALREADY BE DOING:
72. Visit the dentist.
73. Update checking ledger everyday for 30 consecutive days (30/30)
74. Plan dinners for 2 consecutive weeks (4/2)
75. Clean my jewelry
76. Back up all my digital photos
OUT OF MY COMFORT ZONE:
77. Introduce myself to every person on our street
78. Call in to a radio talk show
79. Learn how to knit
80. Sell something on Craigslist or ebay.
81. Invite someone to church with us
82. Unplug the TV for 2 consecutive days (0/2)
JUST FOR FUN:
83. Get a new hair style
84. Go camping with the boys
85. Plan a family vacation for next year
86. Get a pedicure
87. Find a pretty collar for Molly
88. Go fishing
89. Drive all the way around Lake Michigan.
90. Get a family picture taken
91. Get a massage
92. See a chick flick in the theater (popcorn optional)
93. Read The Time Traveler's Wife.
94. Find fun sunglasses for the summer
95. Have a professional make-up consultation
96. Read a fictional romance novel
97. Go bowling
98. Watch fireworks
99. Take the boys on a roadtrip
100. Find the perfect shade of lipstick
101. SECRET GOAL. This goal will be announced once it has been achieved. A group of select people will be made aware of this goal and will help me get there. NOT SO SECRET ANYMORE! COMPLETE A 5K!!! I DID IT!!!!