Nikki is CA bound

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Monday, March 29, 2010

Disney Princess on Ice

On the 25th we took the kids to see the Disney Princess on Ice show. It was a little bit of a later evening for them with the show being at 7pm and all but they loved it and I'm glad we took them. The show was 2 hours long and the kids didn't complain or cry once though we did miss the grand finale because the kids were exhausted and weren't really paying attention at that point. Sam loved seeing Snow White and 7 dwarfs and was giddy with each new song. Sophia seemed to love the whole show. She sat in Todd's lap for the entire show pointing and clapping at things. At one point in the show Sam gave me a big kiss and exclaimed that it was awesome! He kept asking me questions about the characters and tried to keep them all straight. Some he recognized and some he didn't. Overall it was a wonderful time (even if we did have the cheap seats and couldn't see everything so well). We all had a wonderful time and I look forward to doing more things with the kids now that we know they can handle being up past their bed time from time to time.

Don't let that face fool ya he was enjoying the show as much as the kids were. :)

At intermission Sophia streched her legs and told Daddy all about the show.

Genie and crew from the Aladdin movie. Most of pictures did not turn out so well but I got a few of this act because they had more lights on.

The kids watching the show.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Just complaing about being tired so you can skip this if you want lol

I am tired. I don't really get why. The last 2 nights I've gone to bed early (like 9:30 and 10pm early) and gotten up around 7-8am. I'm exhausted. I also have a headache which I think is due to Spring's arrival.

Oh and did I mention sometime late last week I started to feel some awful pains in my left knee. I decided to take it easy after that last incident and because the week before I pulled a muscle in my back. I've not really gotten a good workout in a awhile and I'm antsy to get back to it. I long for time to myself to not think and just workout. It's not happening though like I said I'm tired and oh did I mention my sweet sassy Sophia has decided she doesn't need to nap and needs my attention every waking moment. Yeah I'm not sure how to handle that and now my window for workingout is gone.

I know that if I worked out I would feel better (physically and mentally). Though I'm sure the strain in my knee and back was from me pushing myself too hard so I'd have to slow things down a bit and go at a pace that isn't so hard on my body. Anyone else have this dilema? How do you handle setbacks like uncooperative kids and bodyparts that ache? Do you push through? Do you take time off? How do you feel if you don't get your workout time in? Lastly is it strange that I would be exhausted even with getting a normal amount of sleep? I'm just not a fan of feeling blah and would love to know how to get over these hurdles.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Awesome giveaway

Ok everyone you need to go over to:

and check out the awesome giveaway she is doing.

She is giving away a $50 value gift certificate for some really awesome Vinyl letters that are made by Lots of really great lettering and designs. In fact one of the designs was featured on HGTV.

If you are interested in winning this great prize and I know you are make sure you go to and enter to win.

Here are just a few ideas of what you could win.

Easy dinner

This was so easy and tasted so yummy that I had to share my little experiment I made for dinner.

I took leftovers from my fridge -grilled chicken cubed, steamed white corn, and some leftover turkey stuffing- and put it all together into a baking dish. I tossed in some shredded cheese and mixed it all up and then put it into the oven at 350 for about 15 mins. Sprinkled it with a little sea salt and some peppercorn and it was good to go.

Super easy and super yummy. The kids loved it and I used up leftovers.

What is the best thing you've made to eat lately was super easy?

Today's blessings

1. The sun is shining.
2. I don't have to have the heat or the air conditoner on.
3. Sophia having a tea party with her teddy bears. Cutest thing ever!
4. Sam giving me huge hugs and kisses after getting home from school.
5. After several days of a painful back issue I am feeling better and did 2 miles on the elliptical machine.
6. Fun mail day: New Moon goodies, new checks, and my Word Made Flesh tshirt.
7. Did I mention the sun is shining?
8. Watching Sam and Sophia play and fight with each other I realized these two will always be best friends and that makes me smile.
9. Shoes--time for flip flops and sandals. Goodbye winter wool socks and snow boots.
10. Having a conversation with my kiddos and understanding what they are talking about.
11. Having a good book to read
12. Two days in a row of getting to talk to one of my neighbors and remembering my trips to Bolivia (and petting the cutest baby bunnies)
13. Watching Sam give his bus driver flowers this morning he picked from the yard just because they were pretty and wanted to give them to her (yeah for picking dandalions lol)
14. No cook meals for the kids - they love when I just give them random things from each food group and I love that I don't have to cook
15. Because it's warmer there are less clothes to wash (yeah for not having to do just a load of sweaters/sweatshirts)
16. Planning a birthday suprise for Todd's birthday in April and actually getting details put together for it
17. Weekly weigh in and I didn't gain weight but I didn't loose weight which means even though I didn't work out most of the week I did alright with what I ate. I can live with that.
18. Realizing my goals are not impossible but that sometimes we have to adapt them just a little bit
19.Thankful for a husband who deals with the frustrating things (like the bank) so I don't loose my temper
20. oh yeah and sitting in the sun and getting a little color on my otherwise very pale complexion :)

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Decorating and taming the chaos

I was recently asked if I could do anything I wanted and money wasn't an issue what would I do?

My response was decorating/organizing.

I'm obsessed. Ask my husband he will tell you. I can't let things be. I always have a project to work on and have something that needs to get done above and beyond the normal household stuff.

I've been debating about how to pursue my passion for decorating and organizing. Should I go back to school? I don't really want to do more schooling right now. I love how my space feels but would I be able to do that for others? I dunno. I haven't had the opportunity to do that yet. Could I do that kind of work and still be avilable for my kids and husband? I'm sure there is a way.

What does all that mean? I don't know. I'm trying to figure that out. I do know that I often get compliments on how nice our home looks, how comfortable it is, and how it's so us.

I love the colors in our home (burgandy, blues, hints of green, and pops or orange), I like the mixture of chrome fixtures and the wrought iron pieces too. I love our over stuffed couch, our very tranditional pieces of furniture mixed with contemporary pieces. I love the clear glass vases, the childrens art work everywhere, and the natural elements like the wicker baskets that I use. It fits because it is us. It suits us. We want to be comfortable so we have too many pillows and several throw blankets out and candles in places you don't think you should have them. I just wonder if I could make someone else's space just as comfy in a way that works for them and not for me.

I love a good bargin. I hardly buy anything new and when I do I've gotten for a steal of a price. As I look around my house I can easily tell you the things that I've gotten new as there are so few. I like using what is considered second hand and finding new meaning in things that would probably be tossed away for something sleek, new, and without scratches. I know there are others out there like me that have a desire to make your home look good without spending a small fortune on things and who may or may not be handy/crafty. I'm kinda crafty but not so much with the handy part I haven't actually tackled many overhaul projects on furniture and stuff like that. Anways my point is I think I could help people make a space comfortable for them by using what they already have and love, using what they have and don't love so they do, and finding the rest of a small budget.

I think I'd like to try anyways. I don't know where to go from there though. I'd be willing to offer up some of my ideas on how to make a space work for you for free to get my feet wet and see what I think. If you live local I'd be willing to even give you 2 hours of my time in person to come and help you set up a room if you'd let me take some pictures and use it to help me start buiding a portfolio of sorts to help me figure out this crazy dream of mine.

If you don't live local you can send me pictures, call me, etc. and we can figure this out. I really would love to try and it's totally free. You can spend as much or as little as you like on your space and I'll help you get right.

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder

Despite being tired and in pain (I somehow manged to hurt my back and it's killing me and that is part of why I'm so tired. I only slept 4 hours last night because it hurt so bad). I needed to get out of the house and have a few minutes to myself. I'm fairly happy with the way that my home looks at the moment as far as decorating goes. There are a few subtle things I'd like to change but I'm happy with it. Anyways because I had to get out I figured I would make a quick trip out to Goodwill. You never know what kind of goodies you can find and it's been awhile since I've gone. I was very happy that I went as I scored some fun little goodies. Check them out and the price that I paid for them below.

Old desk fan $5.50
It works too! It's a pale blue color and is really beat up. Not sure if I'll find a way to paint it or not as I kinda really like that it's old looking. The best part of this is I put it on the dresser near my elliptical machine and it'll help keep me cool. I'm thrilled to find this little guy.

Dark contemporary stand (holding the lamp now lol) $4.50
Love this. It's not traditional at all and it can be so many things. Put a cushion on top and it's a stool, stack things on top of it as a stand, use it as a side table or a game top table. Love it. It's not too heavy either and is a beautiful chocolate color. Right now it's holding the lamp that I just got and is next to Todd's record player in his chill room.

Dark brown/burgandy color lamp with bleh lampshade $6.00
I love lights. I really do. I love the personality and the shapes and the lighting options. lol Yes I'm a dork. Anyways I found this beautiful little guy and couldn't be more pleased with it. The base is a deep burgandy color and the shade is kinda bleh but that can be replaced later and is in decent condition right now. I love it and it's a great fit for Todd's chill space.

2 velvet orange pillows $2.00 total
I'm a sucker for the color orange. I love my burgandy, browns, blues, greens, but most of all I love the punchy color that adding something orange adds to your space. I added these pillows to the ones already on the couch. Love them. They feel like someone made them (and weren't mass produced or anything) and I love that. They are oh so soft too!

Tinkerbell flower headband $1.00
Oh course I saw this and thought Sophia would love it. It's addorable and was in great condition and for a buck who could pass that up.

Tiny woven basket $0.75
This little guy is adorable. He's big enough to store random office supplies, movie ticket stubs, receipts or whatever I want. I love natural element it braings in to my office. It is a nice mix with the orange storage bins, the chrome desk lamps, and the other baskets I have mixed in too.
I can't believe I got all of that for under $21! I love it when I find good deals!

Have you guys found any great deals lately?

Home is where all the fun happens

We had the lovely opportunity to have our pictures taken by Marissa Noe again. She is a long time friend and an amazing photographer. We had planned on going out to Shaker Village but because it was cold and wet we decided to do the photos in our own home. We had so much fun. We cranked up the music, pulled up the blinds, and just had fun. We did what we normally do at home except this time we had someone taking our pictures while we did it. :) Marissa has posted more pictures over on her business blog so if you are interested in seeing more (and I know you are) go to now. KY friends if you need pictures she is the woman to do it!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Books from the year so far

Thought it might be interesting to share some of my thoughts on the few books that I've already read this year. I'll start with the most recent one and work backwards. There haven't been many so this shouldn't be too bad.

3. Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl

Book Snynopsis:

Lena Duchannes is unlike anyone the small Southern town of Gatlin has ever seen, and she’s struggling to conceal her power and a curse that has haunted her family for generations. But even within the overgrown gardens, murky swamps, and crumbling graveyards of the forgotten South, a secret cannot stay hidden forever.Ethan Wate, who has been counting the months until he can escape from Gatlin, is haunted by dreams of a beautiful girl he has never met. When Lena moves into the town’s oldest and most infamous plantation, Ethan is inexplicably drawn to her and determined to uncover the connection between them. In a town with no surprises, one secret could change everything.

My Thoughts:

This book was just ok for me. I didn't love and I didn't hate it. I felt like there were a lot of holes and that the whole story just felt a bit awkward to me. I have no idea if the book is going to be a movie or not but I did see the book trailer (they make trailers for books now?) on the authors website and honestly I like that more than the book at this moment. Though I did just read that there is going to be a second book and that might change my mind on the whole story. I'd give it a solid 3 out of 5 stars (and hope the second book is better).

2. Unwind by Neal Shusterman

Book Synopsis:

In a society where unwanted teens are salvaged for their body parts, three runaways fight the system that would "unwind" them Connor's parents want to be rid of him because he's a troublemaker. Risa has no parents and is being unwound to cut orphanage costs. Lev's unwinding has been planned since his birth, as part of his family's strict religion. Brought together by chance, and kept together by desperation, these three unlikely companions make a harrowing cross-country journey, knowing their lives hang in the balance. If they can survive until their eighteenth birthday, they can't be harmed -- but when every piece of them, from their hands to their hearts, are wanted by a world gone mad, eighteen seems far, far away.

My thoughts:

This book blew me away. It was given to me by a friend as a Christmas gift since she knows I love Young Adult books. Boy was she right. This book was amazing. I'd give it 5 out of 5 stars. You have to read this book. It will leaving you thinking without a doubt and will be with you days after you finish reading it. I'd say more but I really don't want to give any of the story away. It's really that good.

As a side note I did just see that the book rights were purchased to be made into a movie. I'll be looking forward to seeing what develops with that. In the mean time I'll be checking out more of Neal's books.

1. The Lovely Bones by Alice Seabold

Book Synopsis:

My name was Salmon, like the fish; first name, Susie. I was fourteen when I was murdered on December 6, 1973."

So begins the story of Susie Salmon, who is adjusting to her new home in heaven, a place that is not at all what she expected, even as she is watching life on earth continue without her -- her friends trading rumors about her disappearance, her killer trying to cover his tracks, her grief-stricken family unraveling. Out of unspeakable tragedy and loss, THE LOVELY BONES succeeds, miraculously, in building a tale filled with hope, humor, suspense, even joy.

My thoughts:

This was an interesting read. I'll admit the reason I picked up the book was because the movie was coming out and I like Peter Jackson's films. I still haven't seen the film but if it's anything like the book it'll be hear wrenching. The book deals with the murder of a young girl (which was very difficult for me) and shows you how everyone deals with grief, life, and everything in between. While I didn't feel blown away by the story I did like it. It was heavy to read and in some places I felt a little let down. I did put this book back on the shelf to possibly read again later. I would give it a 4 out of 4 stars and a warning that if you plan to read this have your tissues ready because it will probably make you cry.

Here is the movie trailer to give you an idea of what the book was about:

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Life is good

It's been a busy couple of days. First we found out that pop pop keeley (my dad's dad) had passed away and thought we would try and go up to PA for the funeral. After much consideration though we decided we just couldn't do it in the short time that we had to work with. Since we didn't do that though we did decide to get some other much needed chores done. We got both cars oil changed and tuned up and more. Oh and since we got our tax refund we even did just a little splurging on ourselves. :) Anyways here are just a few of the candid shots of the kids from the last couple of days.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Crafty Monday

Today the kids made some treasure boxes. I found some craft boxes and stickers at walmart on one of my last visits to the store. I wasn't sure what I was going to do with the boxes but I knew that the kids would love the stickers since they are some of their favorite characters (Cars and Tinkerbell). Today I figured out what to do with both of those things. I let the kids decorate a craft box first by coloring on it with crayons and then putting their stickers on there to create some little treasure boxes for each of them. They turned out pretty good. We let the kids place the stickers on the boxes or tell us where to put them. They love their little boxes and I love that they did it themselves. :) Afterwards they colored the little color sheet that came with the stickers.