Monday, June 30, 2008

graduation goodies

OK, I'm late, I know, graduation was like 3 weeks ago or something like that but whatever, I have no excuse. I just have to share a little project I made for a friend of mine who graduated this year from high school. It isn't a new idea to the whole crafting world but it was new for me. I have been wanting to make a similar project for a long time. This was one of those things that I had on the back burner and once I got started it just kind of took on its own life and happily I think it turned out really cute.

First I painted an Altoid box navy blue and made this cute little graduation cap with paper and a brad and tassel (found those tassels at Hobby Lobby a couple years ago and I have used them every year for someone's card!). BTW his school colors are blue and gold... Open up the box and I made a cute little accordion scrapbook, stamped images decorate the first page, don't laugh at my "signature" crooked stamped letters, I can never get those darn things straight.
These were pictures I had saved over the years, I can't believe I actually had them still but I was so glad I did. Now just a note, my buddy Daniel, is really quiet and shy so I didn't want to make his scrapbook too over-embellished. If it had been a girl, I think I would have gone crazy with lots of words, flowers, stickers, etc. It just didn't seem like I good thing for him.
On the last page I wrote a sentiment to him. He sent me a thank you note (didn't his mom raise him well?) and he said he really liked it. OH I ALMOST FORGOT THE BEST PART (darn preggo brain!), I enclosed a nice sum of money inside the box for him to use towards school or whatever. It's a gift box/scrapbook/card all in one! I think gift card would fit too. Now if I only liked Altoids enough to eat more of them so I could make more boxes...
This has nothing to do with my project but it is my hubby on the jumbo-tron speaking to his graduating seniors (all 800 of them or so) plus all the 5000 or so people that pack the arena to witness the event. I don't know how he does it, keeping so cool and collected while speaking to such a huge crowd. I am always so proud of him and the kids too, they are great and I am happy he gets to be a part of such a special day for them.

Friday, June 27, 2008

glass cleaner

OMG, just to save a buck or two I bought the cheap, store brand window cleaner. Do not do this! I repeat, DO NOT BUY THE CHEAP STUFF! I normally don't give a hoot about what brand something is but the store brand has made me have to work twice as hard. I cleaned all the mirrors and most of my windows downstairs with this stuff and every single one of them is streaked so bad you cannot see out the windows and you cannot see yourself in the mirrors. I am not exaggerating. I tried using newspapers and the better quality paper towels, didn't work. The crazy thing is, they look good right after you clean them, then like a day later, it's all hazy and smeary. So I thought I was doing so awesome getting all this work done, no such luck. When Zoe said, "Mo-om, what happened to my mirror it's all smoky?" I knew I had to get the good stuff. Ugh, so I bought the stuff that costs more and says, 'streak free' and now all my mirrors are at least reflectable. Now the windows, we'll see about those, it is one of my least favorite chores (besides cleaning my husband's sink and the toilets) so they might just have to be streaky for a while. Hey, now no one can see in, right?

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

my boy finally gets his toy

I caved... I gave in...
My husband won, he is the very proud owner of a brand new, 2008 Vespa scooter. We had to get this one (most expensive) because he is so giant, it is the only one he fits on. I couldn't handle it anymore...he has been asking me for about a year and a half (since he turned 40) for a boy-toy... first he wanted a $40,000 boat, I talked him out of that one. So now with the gas prices soaring, he convinced me that this would be a much more practical toy, it gets like 80 miles to the gallon or something like that.

My only consolation is that in 6 years when I turn 40, I will get my very own toy... an orange, 1974 Corvette Stingray with t-tops, complete with rockin' stereo, and a v-8 engine, that kind of cancels out the scooter's gas saving props... I don't ask for much do I? Hey, I've wanted one of these for as long as I can remember... no joke, since my Barbie got her own 'Vette, I have been wanting my own. I beg my mom every year to buy me one, no such luck yet. Too bad, I'm really too short to drive a 'Vette, but I don't care, I'll sit on phone books if I have to, I'm gettin' one now, there is no turning back. The deal has been sealed!
Is the guy helping Paul learn all about his new toy so cute?! He was so teeny compared to my giant husband and so passionate about scooters, it made him cute. I always like a person that is really excited about something without pressuring you to like it too. If I wasn't so set on my 'Vette, I would get one of the cool icy blue scooters of my own, just because he was digging them so much! That's a good salesman. All I really want is for Paul to be happy, I think mission accomplished.

Friday, June 20, 2008

SATC question

Went to see "Sex and the City" movie last night with some of my gal pals. Ok, the movie was good, just like the t.v. show, you know, you laugh, you cry, the whole deal. So here is my question? Why does Carrie think it is OK to wear a gorgeous (or not so gorgeous) dress with the back cut out with a black (or other color) bra? Did I miss something in the fashion world that said it was OK to have your undergarments just totally out there? I don't get it. I have always wondered about this even when the show was airing originally. She looks so great and then she turns around and blah- like it is screaming in your face! I mean with the popularity of thongs, seamless undies, and convertible bras and for heavens sake, stick on bras, can the girl not get it together?! I just don't get it...

Thursday, June 19, 2008

lost sippy cup

Have you ever found a long, lost sippy cup with just a teeny bit of apple juice left inside? Well, I have and guess what it makes?! Moonshine! Woo hoo! If times get any rougher with the economy and stuff, I know I'll be able to make homemade liquor for myself (in about 6 months of course) and my husband. Wow, I opened up one of Parker's cups that had been MIA for about a week (found in his closet) and not only did it reek of wine-ish smell, it popped and fizzed when I opened it, just like champagne! I have since washed it about 6 times and the smell will not go away. I don't know if this happens with all juice or only the kind of juice we use (the concentrate kind- my sneaky way of getting my kids to drink tap water, gotta have that fluoride). Just a fun little experiment you can try at home, sans children of course.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

just a quickie

I just got a call in my car from the doctor's office, do you know how frightening that is when you are waiting for test results?! They should say, "now, are you driving? You should pull over until we're done..." Anyway, after almost having a heart attack, the nurse told me that the results of our Down Syndrome tests were "normal" and that the baby is "fine". Whew, I have been a wreck wondering about it and truly I think they should not make a person wait a week for those results, but it is what it is. Thankfully, we are blessed and now I have to move on to the next round of baby worries, if only I could find a starting point in which to worry! So much to fret over and not enough time in the day!

Monday, June 16, 2008

Dad's day

No pictures to commemorate Father's Day, the digital camera was acting weird, again. I did take good old 35mm pictures, maybe I can figure out a way to get them on here...
Meanwhile, we did celebrate and it was a fun day. The kids and I got Paul a tree, he was super excited, it is one we have been wanting for a while to complete our patio surround. It is a Crimson Lace Leaf Japanese Maple. The best part is when I go tree shopping and the guys at the nursery are shocked when I actually know what I am talking about, most cases, I know more than they do. Pat myself on the back *pat*pat*pat*. It is because my landscape loving husband has taught me well and we watch DIY and HGTV almost 24/7 when he is home(not my idea!). Anyway, Paul is loving his new tree and we are looking forward to watching it grow, even if it is a slow-growing, focal point, miniature tree (told ya I knew my stuff!). He also got a scrapbook/journal in which to write about his trees/plants, it has places to put pictures and other stuff like the tags and receipts. The kids got him a shirt/hat combo that said, "worlds greatest dad" which he was made to wear to Bob Evans for our Sunday breakfast. He didn't even complain! Later, my extended family came over for a cook out and corn hole (the game!). It was a nice day celebrating our patriarch. I hope all the daddies I know had a great day.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

preggo dream

You gotta love those crazy pregnancy dreams... last night I had a dream that I was a teenager again and my boyfriend was Nick Jonas (of the Jonas Brothers). Is it because they have been on Disney nonstop for about two months or because he is just so darn cute? I won't go into details but I will say I had to look away when their new video came on Disney channel today, I was feeling little guilty! Ahhh!!!! At least in my dream I was only 15 again, not 29 and holding, he he he! Oh and even better, I did not have any acne, I did not think I was fat, I was dressed really cool, my hair looked so cute (no mall bangs!), and I knew everything I know now. How is that for a cool dream?! I can't wait for more exciting preggo induced imaginative dreams... if they're any good, I promise to share.

my teen crush, singing at our Hannah Montana concert!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

feeling a little out of sorts

Now that school is out and it's hotter than blazes it seems like my schedule has flown out the window. My house is a mess and there are piles of papers everywhere from my husband's end of the year projects. More outside time, trips to the pool, keeping up with the yard and all the other warm-weather activities have made my scrapbooking come to an abrupt halt (almost). I did finish my hubby's father's day gift (it's wrapped so I can't take a picture of it yet) and I did make two layouts this week. Other than that, I am going to have to re-evaluate my schedule and find some time to scrap, I am having withdraw. Every time I walk by my desk I just sigh heavily and say, "soon, my love, I will return..." For now, my other love needs some attention. Some much needed reading is taking place. I am catching up on a mountain of magazines (Real Simple is my most favorite! Don't ya just love the cover of this one! I might save it just to look at for inspiration!) and some good chick flick reads my mom has passed on. It feels good to just relax and read and let my brain rest.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

junk drawer

I just have to show my newly cleaned and purged junk drawer. Ahh, I love just seeing things all neat and tidy. We've had this drawer organizer forever and about once every 6 months or so I empty it out and put everything back. It is amazing how much stuff I throw out of here. I think I had an entire gallon sized ziplock baggie full of Zoe's hair accessories, things she takes out of her hair (five minutes after I fix it) and leaves all over the house. Somehow I end up putting them all in here instead of back in her room. Regardless, a little project that made me feel good.

Monday, June 9, 2008


My little ballerina...(and tapper)...
that's my girl, right smack in the middle... arabesque...their ballet number was to "My Favorite Things", Zoe looked so graceful, I cried, I am such a sap!
with her beloved teachers...
her favorite costume and number... they did "Hey Mickey" complete with pom poms! I had to show Zoe the Toni Basil version on YouTube so she'd understand why they were using the pom poms and dressed like cheerleaders...
Noah, the only boy in her class was really shy, he was "Mickey", that's Zoe second from the right... my mother-in-law said that they put Zoe in the front because she was the only one who knew all the steps! She might be a little biased... that's ok, I liked her being in the front!

Zoe worked so hard to perform in her dance recital. I have to say it was because of her wonderful teachers, Miss Jennifer and Miss Chelsea. They were so sweet and nurturing, perfectly suited for Zoe's personality. They really helped her blossom this year, her confidence and ability have really improved from last year. I hope next year's teacher(s) will be just as perfect. Zoe has been invited to perform with the competitive team and I felt like it would be a good year to try, we don't have to pay for preschool next year so the added expense won't seem like a true hardship. They get to perform several more times in addition to the yearly recital. Zoe is so excited to be a member of the "Tiny Stars" team. I, of course, am so proud that her dedication has been recognized. She still doesn't understand why she only got to be "Dancer of the Month" one time, she tells me, "mommy, I kept working really hard every time, I think I am dancer of the month this time too!" My sweet girl.

Friday, June 6, 2008

on my own

In my house I am on my own. I am the only person who truly believes that being neat and tidy is essential to life. Now don't get me wrong, my husband will tell you he loves it that I am organized. And I like to think that I help him do his job well because I do mine well. Zoe will admit she likes her room clean rather than dirty. But it gets so messy you can't walk in there, literally, no joke! Parker is quick to tell me when he made a mess in his room. But he won't help to put anything away. Am I fighting a losing battle? I think so, you decide, here is the evidence!

Our computer desk while my husband is working on a project... and what it looks like days later...
Every morning I wake up to clothes on the floor and bags or suitcases are left out for weeks after a trip...
Drawers are left open after an item is removed, this one really gets me in a tizzy.

Parker's room after he refuses to take a nap, he just throws whatever he can reach from his crib to the floor.

I am truly on my own here. **sigh**

Thursday, June 5, 2008

"fun" meals

My mother-in-law and my husband always call any meal from a fast food place a "fun meal" instead of "Happy Meal" or kid's meal or whatever. I always tell them it is because they lived in a cave until 1986... just kidding they didn't but it never ceases to surprise me when my husband says he never did _________ or tried ________, things I see as universal to childhood. (The man has never had a Twinkie for goodness sake! I mean, I practically lived in a convenience store as a child, Twinkies, Ho Hos, Snowball, soft serve ice cream and penny candy were staples to me... I am starting to understand more about myself as I write, hmmm...)
Anyway, I stopped at Wendy's the other day for the kids and they protested vehemently, they are die-hard McD's fans as most kids are, and when we got home and unwrapped their sodium-laden-fat-filled-non-nutritious lunches (I was weak people!) they found these Arthur stationary sets. Parker said, "Dat a game mommy?" No buddy, it's some paper and stuff to make cards. Zoe said, "Oh mommy, that is the best fun meal toy I ever got!" And she proceeded to work until all her supplies were used up and I had a collection of notes then she moved on to Parker's supply, she said, "mom, he won't want to use these old things." Turns out she is a paper junkie just like me! She is mine after all, sometimes I wonder because she is so much like her daddy, she even calls them "fun meals!"

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

cleanin' my ride

I just love a clean car, always have, always will. I don't like clutter in my ride or food everywhere. I guess I'm consistent because I don't like my home like that either. When I was a single gal and all I had to keep track of were tapes and scrunchies (hey, I was livin' in the 90's!) it was kind of easy. I just kept everything in the console between my seats. Add in two kids, a dog, and a husband and well, things get a little complicated. With this warm weather and the kids playing outside constantly, I am having cleaning and organizing withdrawal, I know, I am a sick person! So I use this time to tidy up my van. I don't know who the knucklehead is who designed a mini-van with no console between the seats but if I ever meet him I am going to b--ch slap him, it had to be a man, no woman would do that to us moms-in-vans. Anyway...

I keep this cute little Longaberger basket up by me, it has pencils, my phone charger, a wipe or two, some hair rubber bands, and scissors. I like having something pretty and that I love in my car, it makes it nicer to be driving around doing all those errands.
Here is what I keep between the driver & passenger seat... a coupon organizer (for restaurants and Target, etc.), a bag of treats for the kids, wipes, Ziploc baggies to divide M&Ms (!), my little pouch that holds my library card and change for fines (hey I'm not organized all the time!), and a CD case. I also keep a trash bag here too that is emptied about every other day.
In between the kids' seats is a basket of books, doodle pads, clip boards, a pouch of pens and crayons, and whatever else junky stuff that Zoe just has to bring with her.
In the very back I keep diapers, more wipes, toilet seat covers, bandaids, neosporin, and a teeny sunscreen bottle, and a towel to dry off playground slides since we usually go in the morning when things are still wet with dew.
I also have started keeping my canvas grocery totes in the back so I don't forget them when I go shopping. There it is, how to organize a van that has no built-in storage. It's a good thing (I can't wait to catch up on my Martha this summer!!!!)

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

the beast

I slayed the beast! I finally finished this book after about 3 months and 3 library renewals, I did it! Woo hoo! I really wanted to quit but I kept pushing through. I am glad I did. I learned a lot and it really put things in perspective. I wish if I can tell the author (a Marshall University professor) that I liked the more human interest side of the story in contrast to the specific factual recounts of budgets, campaign costs, etc. I can see why FDR was elected four times, he was a pretty cool dude, I wish we had such a brave visionary now. After reading about the Great Depression, I can't help but think we are experiencing a similar if not smaller scale version of a depression, with all the home foreclosures, loss of jobs, banking disasters, recession, high unemployment, etc. This fall with the upcoming presidential race looming is going to be very interesting.

Monday, June 2, 2008

a secret

I have a secret, I bribe my children all the time. Shh, don't tell anyone! Lately, I have had trouble with Zoe keeping her room clean. Actually this is an ongoing battle and I don't foresee it remedying itself anytime soon. BUT I have found a way to get her to make her bed! It's called bribery. She made it a few times on her own and I praised her obnoxiously. She loved the praise but I knew that wouldn't keep her making it forever. So one day, I got a flash of genius, I said, "Zoe you have done so well making your bed I think I'll read you an extra Junie B. Jones (her favorite books) chapter tonight. You deserve a reward." She was so stoked it was ridiculous. I am a mommy prodigy! Hurray for me! We read these chapters after our group reading time and after I put Parker to bed, it's our "special time." So this is a big deal for her. Now in the past couple weeks, I'd say she makes it about 75% of the time but she knows when it is time to read if she gets an extra chapter or not. My problem is going to be when we run out of Junie books... bribery, you should try it, it ain't pretty but it sure does the trick sometimes!