Monday, March 28, 2011

Spring Break

Hi y'all. Let me first say "Wahooee!!!!!!" I am sooooooooooo excited that my Kentucky Wildcats are going to the final four. Hot digity. Cannot wait. Big tall hubby is still sad about his Buckeyes, so I am trying to contain my excitement for now. Next, let me tell you it is spring break for the kids here. (Big tall hubby's school is in session, yet another reason we need to sell our house and move- so we'll all be on the same schedule!) So I am not sure how much I will get to post this week. I am already waaaaay behind on things I want to do and with all three of them home all week, it doesn't look too promising. So if i don't talk to you, have a great day (or so.)

Friday, March 25, 2011

A Rare Occasion

This is Parker's room before I painted it a year ago, just wanted you to see that we have equal representation of UK and OSU at our house. He also has UK and OSU pictures on another wall.

Lordy, lordy, what the heck, is you know where freezing over?!

For those of you who do not follow college basketball (I am a freako who does!), my beloved University of Kentucky Wildcats are playing my big tall hubby's Ohio State Buckeyes tonight in the NCAA tournament. Yikes! In all the years that my big tall hubby and I have been together, this has NEVER happened. OSU is usually a dominant football school while UK is a basketball powerhouse. So we kind of cheer for each other's teams during the appropriate seasons. Never been a problem. Well last year OSU had a great bball year and this year they have been ranked #1, a lot. My Cats have been somewhere in the top 25 all year, but they lost a lot of players last year and they are a young team. Nonetheless, I cheer for them and go crazy during March like all true blue fans. Tonight should be very interesting to say the least. Which ever team wins will be a loss at my house. :( On that note, I have to say...


Thursday, March 24, 2011

Brotherly Love

Who says boys can't be sweet? Especially brothers.

Look at this...
Parker decided to get a snack for Tanner. He wanted to make sure that I knew it was for Tanner. He couldn't write "Tanner" so he just put a "T" and a heart on it. Oh my gosh, I am crying. Seriously. (dang pregnancy hormones)

Then just last week I found them watching tv together. Is that the cutest thing ever?! I did not pose them. Right before I snapped the picture, Parker dropped his arm. They were just sitting there with their arms around each other. Uh oh, more tears. (darn you pregnancy hormones!)

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

watchin' my weight Wednesday


This is probably the single most important thing that keeps me working out and eating right. It is also the biggest thing that can grow and diminish from day to day, no, make that minute to minute. I mean, really, I need lots of motivation to keep myself on the healthy track. I find motivation in so many areas. I talk about it here a lot by sharing my I-pod choices, my workout ideas, healthy recipes, where to find cute cheap workout gear, etc.

But, am I motivated to eat right every day? Um, nope. (I just finished a couple tacos from Taco Bell because we spent three hours at the doctor and Walgreens and by the time we were done I was going to eat one of my kids!) But, am I motivated to exercise every day. Heck no! I haven't exercised since Sunday this week. (Been up all night with sick baby and sick preschooler... that kind of wrecks havoc on my workout schedule.) So, what to do?

Start over, right now. This minute. OK, so I ate kind of crummy food for lunch. Well it wasn't crummy, it was yummy, but was it healthy, not so much. I ate a healthy breakfast (yay me) and I am making a really good potato frittata with roasted broccoli for dinner (yay me again). I am also going to attempt to take a walk outside with the boys and the dog (if the weather permits) because we have done this every day this week and they are enjoying and I am getting some sort of physical activity in my sleep-deprivation mode. So I feel pretty good about the whole healthy living thing, despite my "oopses" this week.

With all my true confessions today (who knew that's how this would turn out!) I thought I'd share some things that keep me motivated. Once I started thinking about it, I was surprised at how many things I rely on and look forward to that help me on this healthy living path.

Things that motivate me:
  • being a Weight Watcher member (currently on hiatus until bambino is born)
  • reading fitness magazines and blogs
  • reading success stories of people who have lost weight or concered a fitness goal (usually in magazines but I do have a great WW book with success stories)
  • tracking (writing down) what I eat and how much I exercise
  • new workout clothes, that fit correctly (kind of a problem now but I know it is temporary)
  • taking fitness classes (spinning and bootcamp are my favorites- still doing them, it is not pretty but I go and do it big belly and all, and will continue until it becomes uncomfortable)
  • running 5K races (someday that marathon!)
  • finding new recipes to try and actually trying them
  • music, I am still working on filling up that new Ipod I got for Christmas
  • tv shows that highlight healthy living (Biggest Loser, Ruby* see below*, Thintervention, Jaime Oliver's Food Revolution)
  • writing these Wednesday posts :)
  • new clothes that fit correctly (again, not so much in my current state)
  • pictures of me that show me in good shape, how I want to look (some people like the ones that show them heavy or out of shape but those just make me so sad)
  • working for Weight Watchers as a receptionist (again, temporarily on hold until #4 is born and I reach goal weight)
  • having energy to play with my kids
  • trying to find fun activities to do with my kids that encourage them to be active
  • having the will power to avoid those dang peanut M&Ms at the checkout (that is a victory every time I go shopping!)
  • lifting weights, sometimes I am the only female in the weight room and I do not get the least bit intimidated by all those men
  • getting rid of clothes that don't fit (either too big or too small)
  • just knowing that the choices I make are enabling me to have a healthy, hopefully long life is a pretty big motivator!
So as my motivation waxes and wanes, I know eating healthy, exercising, and maintaining a healthy weight will be a struggle for the rest of my life. Darn, why couldn't I be one of those gals who could just eat anything and not worry about it? Or be like my mom, the kind of gal who "forgets" to eat, um, yeah, whatever. Or why couldn't I be a professional athlete, then I'd have to be in shape for my job? All right, that is getting far fetched!

Anyway, so on to Ruby. Do you watch her show? She is on the Bravo channel on Sunday nights. I don't know how I found her but I think she is amazing. At one time in her life she weighed over 700 pounds! Through changing her diet, exercising, counseling and sheer will and hard work, she has lost half of that weight. She has not had any surgery or anything to help her out. Her show documents her struggles. Just because she wants to lose 200 more pounds doesn't mean her struggles don't mirror my own. She lacks motivations sometimes (she has two sweet trainers to help her, wish I did too!), she emotionally eats (um, me too), she has things in her life that made her the way she is (yep, understand that too). So you can see how she is just like every one of us who strives to be healthy. This clip is kind of a preview for this season. She is having a lot of emotional stuff going on this season so it is kind of melodrama but I really think it is worth a looksee.

So what motivates you all? I would love any tried and true remedies from my bloggy momma friends.

Also, my recommended song to download this week is: "Born this Way" by Lady Gaga. I wanted to include a link to the video, but I watched it and honestly it is frightening and really gross. I love Gaga but this one is too icky. Trust me. The song is great but the video, not so much. I think it would be great for hill running and/or intervals. Right now, I am not running but it is a nice addition to my treadmill songs nonetheless. Anything that makes me want to dance is a keeper! Some of you might be saying, "duh, isn't this song like #1 on the charts" but if you haven't exercised to it, you are missing out.

Happy Wednesday!

what's in a name

Parker James, Tanner John, & Zoe Abigail
Photo from 2010

How do you feel about picking a name for your child? Oh my gosh, I stress about it so much. I have the most common name on the planet, really, Jennifer. At least my mom gave me Renee as a middle name, so I am sort of unique. All the Jennifers I know are Jennifer Marie or Jennifer Lynn, I ask, it drives Zoe crazy but I always ask a Jennifer (reading nametags!). I have only met one other Jennifer Renee at a scrapbooking thing no less, and she goes by Jen Renee. I never thought of myself as a Jen, Jens are always really sporty and cute. Me, not so much. I am Jenny or Jennifer (to my family). I am ok with it, luckily Jennifer kind of lost its luster and it is slowly becoming old fashioned, like Sarah, Sophia, or Katherine used to be. Maybe it will be in vogue when it is time for me to have a granddaughter.

I hate trying to figure out what would be appropriate for a child and an adult. I scour baby name books finding nicknames that might be questionable (i.e. cause major trauma for my child during their teen years). I look at their initials combinations. I have already begun to search the web for names for #4. It is overwhelming.

I like sort of different names (not celebrity different- Apple or Moses or Honor) but not run of the mill (being one of three Jennifers in all my classes kind of traumatized me). When I was pregnant with Zoe, I knew she would either be Zoe or Parker (I picked Zoe and Paul picked Parker.) So then came Parker, we knew he would be Parker or Paige. Then along came Tanner. I had picked Tanner and Olivia. One of my besties from college also had a Tanner a few months before I did. I was so worried that she would be annoyed that I took her name choice, I dreaded it for weeks before finally telling her that we had picked the same name. She lives in another state so it's not like we are seeing each other all the time! She promised me she wasn't mad so I was feeling ok when Tanner was born.

Then, SURPRISE! Here comes #4, we have never found out gender before but I felt like this time we had to, we have a lot to organize and I have to begin purging baby clothes, they are taking over my basement (that's a whole different post)! Anyway, I was convinced this one would be a girl. Surely the good Lord would give me a boy, three boys! Just for the reason that I hate going to the grocery most days, Dear Lord, do you know how many groceries I am going to have to buy in the next 18 years?!!? I mean the gallons of milk alone, are totally frightening!

Anyway, I thought we would have an Olivia and boy names just never really entered my mind. Two ultrasounds later, we are 99% sure he is in fact a he, it was pretty obvious if you know what I mean. ;) So here I am wondering, boy names... I want it to be an -er ending name so #4 doesn't feel left out from his other brothers. But I don't want it to sound too much like Parker and Tanner. Hmm, this is really hard! I mean, I like these: Tucker, Conner, and a couple more but none are sounding like the "one." So how would you feel if someone picked the same name as one of your kids? I mean, really, be honest. Some of the names I like are very similar or the same as some friends, hey my friends have great taste! I had no idea anyone would name their daughters Zoe, I had never met a Zoe until I had a Zoe, now they are everywhere!!! I thought naming my daughter after a Lenny Kravitz song (and his daughter by the way) was just so unique and different. Just ask any Jennifer... being uniquely the same isn't so bad.

Monday, March 21, 2011

updates and Monday stuff

Still for sale!
Some updates about recent stuff... the big meanies came back Saturday, really early for their second look at our house.
First off, thanks for all your kind comments on Friday regarding the big meanies who came back (for who knows why) for a second showing on my house. I really appreciate all the nice things you all said. I always feel bad using my blog to vent but sometimes it just feels so much better to get it written (well, typed) out.

They decided that they would put an offer on another house because our house was too expensive and they felt like they could get more for their money somewhere else. And they thought our kitchen was a "disservice." Which of course I take personally, even though I shouldn't. I love my wood cabinets. I love my ginormous island. I love my white appliances. I love my laminate counter tops for now, sure I'd like the limestone ones I picked out before we decided to sell our house but I'll be dipped in you know what if I spend money on those only to leave them here! Plus, I don't think I'd get stainless steel even if we have to do a kitchen redo at our new house. I just don't really care for them for me. I see them in other people's kitchens and in magazines and on tv and I agree, they can look really nice but for me, Jenny, they just aren't what I prefer. I would like a new backsplash by the way, big meanies, but everything else can stay. Anyway, it was an emotional weekend. Knowing I had to clean my house for a really awful couple, waiting to hear what they said about our house again, second guessing all our choices in building this house, realizing again that we aren't any closer to moving, just made me really emotional.

Oh, and can I say they were also worried that their kids might get hit by golf balls. Whatever. We back up to a putting green. If someone is hitting their ball that hard on a putting green, they are a really bad golfer. Anyway. Jeez.

Grocery update:
I got my coupon savings tallied up for last year. Can't believe I forgot to do it sooner. From my records, I saved $1257.15 in coupon savings and $2034.98 in grocery savings (shopping ads and sales). That is a total of $3236.15 savings. Not too bad really. I definitely want to try to save more this year the past couple years I have been hovering around these numbers. We'll see I guess because I just read that all grocery items (foods and non perishables) are going up in price. Boo hoo!

I'd also like to add one more pet peeve to my grocery list: I really hate when the bagger doesn't tell you which bag your eggs are in, I mean, really bagger people!

Sick baby update:
Mother Nature has a rotten sense of humor or she believes in tough love, I don't know yet. I was literally up all weekend with this guy. He was so sick (starting to feel better now) for three days. I was going insane. I slept about 45 minutes Friday and Saturday nights. I think Mother Nature is helping me remember what life will be like after our new guy makes his arrival. (please ignore this hideous picture- Parker took it while I was trying to watch a basketball game, I think I was mid-cheer/heckle, not sure).

We've started to call Tanner my little baboon because he has the same wispy hair baboons have. It was really crazy after all his feverish no-sleeping nights, plus he was latched on to me like a baboon, I couldn't even go to the bathroom without him. You other mommies know those kinds of sicknesses!

And a Dyson report:
I love this guy. I really do. I just knew I would but I really do. I knew that all my friends who had one were not exaggerating. He was my birthday present. I have been wanting him for a long time. He works like a charm. That canister thingy gets filled up every time I vacuum. And I have to vacuum a lot. Last week I did a ton because of the house showings and it amazes me how much crud that thing picks up. I don't know how often I changed my old vacuum bags, but I know it wasn't after every use so this is like pure joy. I am still getting used to the attachment pieces, they are really different from my old vacuum but nonetheless, emptying that can is so satisfying! By the way, Kerri, I did name him Tyson. :) Thanks for the suggestion.

my things to do this week:
  • put away St. Patrick's Day decorations
  • get out Easter decorations
  • finish sorting birthday pictures into the kids' albums
  • finish my sewing/mending, almost done
  • continue making my master baby to do list
  • clean my upstairs doors
  • sort/purge my really old scrapbooking supplies in the basement (two tubs)
  • clean/purge my cleaning supply cabinet
  • get dance competition stuff ready for Saturday
  • drop off a load to Goodwill
  • sell books at Half Priced Books
  • clean house for a Sunday open house
  • if time/energy sweep high traffic areas in the garage (no moving or rearranging, just walking areas)
I am hoping again for lots of energy this week. I actually was on track to get my whole list complete from last week until the showings got scheduled. I am hoping that Tanner feels better so I don't have to carry him around all day, that will definitely make it harder to complete my list.

my menus for this week:
I am winging it this week. I did not get to plan menus or grocery shop because of sick baby. We have stuff from last week that we can eat and I have plenty to get us through.

Everyone have a great week!

Friday, March 18, 2011

mean people


Sometimes I just don't understand the whole grand plan.

I just found out that the people coming through our house tomorrow at 9:30 AM for a showing (nice time, huh?) are the people who came through two weeks ago and gave us horrible feedback. The kind of feedback that made me cry. The kind that I lost sleep over. The kind that made me argue with my big tall hubby. The kind I haven't forgotten or gotten over.

Why are they coming to my house again?

Why do I have to clean for them?

Why did I drag my sick baby to the store to get carpet cleaner so I can clean a bad stain for them?

Why I am sacrificing my quality quiet time (kids at school, baby asleep) to craft or watch "Jersey Shore" for them?

I just don't understand.

Sometimes, people are so mean. I would seriously feel like the worst people in the world if I were them, I mean, now they know that I know they are the big meanies from two weeks ago. I just don't get it.

I'll be back Monday. I promise I won't be all "woe is me" and forlorn.

Have a great weekend.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

St. Patrick's Day

The kids were thrilled to find that Lucky the Leprechaun had visited us again this year.

He leaves clues (sometimes little messes and footprints or confetti) to a pot of "gold".
The kids run around frantic (usually in their jammies) looking for the pot.
This year Zoe read the clues, that was so neat. They were really hard clues but they all (well Zoe and Parker) figured them out.
Parker actually found the pot. The gold was Hershey's Kisses and gold coin chocolates. Lucky always tricks them, he never leaves real gold. That stinker. Funny thing, they don't care. Chocolates for breakfast are pretty golden. (I take the worst action photos ever, jeez.)
Tanner is already an expert at unwrapping kisses. :)
My vintage green bead necklace (from my 96 year old grandma, isn't it pretty?) was accompanied by a green and white striped cardigan sweater. Can you believe I don't have any other green maternity items? I made the kids wear something green so I had to also. Most of them are pink, oh well.

AND I had to put on my UK necklace, it is the start of March Madness today for my Wildcats. Woo! Go CATS!!!

Happy St. Patrick's Day everyone.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

watchin' my weight Wednesday

Two years ago I started a journey to lose my baby weight from Tanner. I joined Weight Watchers and I learned way more than I ever thought I could. I learned that in order for me* to lose weight (and keep it off) I have to have a four piece puzzle completely in place to succeed. I call it a puzzle because all the pieces have to fit together to work for me (i.e. make the perfect picture).

The pieces of my puzzle are:
  1. support/knowledge (WW meetings, being a WW employee, books and magazines)
  2. exercise (very often and very consistent)
  3. motivation (more on that next Wednesday)
  4. proper diet and nutrition
The pieces of my puzzle might change shape or percentages every day but I can assure you that the proper diet and nutrition piece are the biggest deciding factors for me. I think some people's puzzles might have different pieces, more or less components and some people might be like "shut up you're no expert!" But I am only speaking of what works for me.

I relied heavily on Weight Watchers at first for my diet and nutrition. It works. There is no question about it. I lost over 36 pounds and then I began working for the company (and will go back after baby #4 is born). As I felt myself becoming more healthy, thinner, and more willing to try new foods I began exploring magazines, books, television shows, blogs, etc.

I learned so much through this journey. I get so excited to try new recipes and munching on nuts and fruits is something I actually enjoy. I am not kidding when I tell you I was a processed food junkie so all these new habits are thrilling to me.

I have shared one of my favorite healthy living blogs before Carrots N Cake and I have learned a ton from Tina. Her first book is coming out soon, yay her! I love it when someone who has a whole blog (or book or article, etc.) shares something that I also agree with. Recently, Tina shared a list of the 30 Healthiest Foods (compiled from Real Simple Magazine). Funny thing, I had this article from the magazine tacked to our fridge as a reference and reminder. Tina says she is working towards eating and/or trying all 30 foods on the list. Guess what? Me too! (Like I said, love it when I have something in common with an expert!)

Here are the 30 foods:
whole grain pasta
peanut butter and almond butters
skim milk
wild salmon
extra virgin olive oil
chicken breasts
kidney beans
sweet potatoes
nonfat greek yogurt
black beans

I was really surprised at how many of these foods I already eat and enjoy. Those that I haven't tried yet (kale, bulgur, and quinoa) I am currently scouting recipes for us to enjoy. The only one I don't think I can do is sardines. I know, I know, I sound like a kid who won't try it but really, I love tuna and other fish so sardines might just have to be eliminated from my list. 29 out of 30 ain't so bad, right?!

I hope that this list inspires you to branch out and try some new food items, especially with spring farmer's markets opening soon.

Here is the online version of the article: 30 Healthiest Foods

*I am not a health expert, nor have I any certification, this is strictly from personal experience!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

House Cleaning: whole or part?

Tanner jumps in the dryer every time I take things out. He thinks it is so much fun. I thought it was funny too until he decided he didn't want to come out. Stinker.
With spring on the way and more sunlight coming through my windows which makes it easier to see all the dust in my house, I am finding myself making my spring cleaning "to do" list. In the past I just kind of go through my list and mark off the tasks as I do them. Things like: wash windows, doors, baseboards, wash rugs, etc. I kind of meander around and eventually all of the jobs are done. I have "clean my downstairs doors" on my things to do this week because they are totally grody but also because it is a spring cleaning job I normally do. I suppose I am hoping if I start my spring cleaning, spring will in fact come sooner.

I guess it doesn't matter how I do the jobs as long as I get them done, right? That dust sure isn't going anywhere on its own. Here is what I am wondering of all you fine blog mommas out there... when you clean (say for spring cleaning) do you clean a whole room at once or do you do one part at a time? Do you find it easier to do one room at a time or one job at a time?

Monday, March 14, 2011

Monday stuff

School carnivals, don't you just love them?
I do, until the beloved balloon animals pop and the cool hair spray runs all over bed sheets therefore resulting in me having to change all beds and takes three washings to get out of scalps.
I also love the bag of goodies and prizes that come home. They are always such quality goods. (sarcastic tone here!)
My things to do this week: (it is a lot, I am hoping for a good week and lots of energy)
  • clean my doors downstairs (we have painted white doors and they are gerr-oss!)
  • put away our snow pants/suits (wishful thinking-spring is on the way)
  • sort birthday pictures and put in my kids' birthday albums, will try to share this later
  • mail two birthday cards (on time!)
  • do some mending: sew on a few buttons, a Brownie patch, fix Zoe's dance garment bag, try to repair a sweater hole...
  • tally my coupon savings from 2010 (I forgot to do this in January! Can't wait to see my results)
  • begin my master "baby things to do list" (this one is scaring me)
  • shred some old documents
  • get Parker some new soccer shoes
  • get Parker a haircut
  • hang up some pictures and an old window that were moved when we got our new tv
  • I am also planning a leprechaun scavenger hunt, but this is a big secret, don't tell my kids
  • my menus for this week:
    • grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup (special request from Zoe)
    • potato frittata (didn't get to make last week)
    • greek salads with chickpeas and grilled chicken
    • fish and twice baked potatoes
    • spaghetti with roasted zucchini
    • sausage with white beans and peppers
    Here is where our snow pants and big fat coats go for the warm season. I have to store them in the basement because we have the world's smallest coat closet. Seriously, it holds like three coats. Anyway...Do you have one of these storage thingys? I really like it. I got it at Target. I wish I had bought the more expensive one that was a bit sturdier because as the kids' coats have gotten bigger, they are also heavier. If/when we move I have a feeling I'll be needing a few of these guys. The neighborhood we plan on moving to has really old houses which translates to no closet space.

    I finally got my storage baskets corralled and cleaned up, it only took me three weeks to do, jeez. (Sorry for the grungy basement picture, you know how basements are!) I did buy these little storage cubes to put them in because they just kept falling over and the kids were kicking them all over the basement, driving me crazy. I like these cubey-things because you can build them a variety of ways. I have them in a couple closets and they work pretty well for folded t-shirts, toys, and other not-heavy items. I also like them because if/when we move I can take them apart and reuse them in our new (old) house.
    These are my extra baskets and inexpensive plastic storage containers. Nothing special but I do like to hang on to them in case I have to use them again. On top is a small trash can that holds some wrapping paper and bubble wrap I am saving for the big house move, if it ever happens. (I am hearing a pattern today!)

    One more thing...
    OK girlies, who is the bachelor Brad going to pick tonight? I have thought Chantal all along but I think Emily has a good chance. My only reason for him to still pick Chantal is because I don't think he is ready to be a dad yet. (Plus I did break down and buy that In Touch magazine that paints Emily as a fame seeker.... I had a weak moment and now I think she is not the right girl. Dang celebrity magazines!) I am excited to see the finale. Big tall hubby and I have watched every season, even though we swear we aren't going to watch. Brad is really cute but seems to have the personality of a rock. I hope he is better off camera or both of these girls have been wasting their time.

    Friday, March 11, 2011

    grocery store woes

    Do you know how they say you spend a third of your life in bed? I was thinking they should figure out how much of our life we spend at the grocery. I swear I feel like I spend hours there. I am always needing something, even my most well planned trips and organized lists leave me driving home saying, "shoot, I forgot..." Please tell me this happens to you!

    I have so many pet peeves when it comes to grocery shopping. I thought I'd share a few of them. So if you feel like that might be grumpy, it won't hurt my feelings if you click to somewhere else, see you Monday if that's the case.

    My grocery store pet peeves:
    • when one store (in the same chain) doesn't have the same brands as the others (only one of my Krogers I frequent carries the organic peanut butter I like! and it is the farthest away from me)
    • please stop stocking the aisles in the daytime when us mommies are pushing our carts full of kids down the aisle, I hate getting trapped behind a wall of boxes on my way to get Cheerios, can't they do this at another time?
    • I really get mad when they run out of advertised sale items.
    • bad, mushy, non-organic produce
    • dirty kid carts (or wet ones brought in from a recent rain storm), yuck! or when they have no carts available in the store
    • my nearest Kroger does not plow the snow, it is impossible to push a cart out to my car in the snowy weather, I have complained several times
    • bad music playing, my favorite grocery store (that is now closed) used to play the best music, I used to sing along, not kidding
    • frequent and annoying intercom pages- really do we have to hear the employees screaming about price checks and then slamming down the phone every five seconds
    • backed up check out lines with only one or two cashiers working
    • when I forget my reusable bags (see photo above) that's my fault, not the store's
    • my most biggest pet peeve of all: is when I am shopping without my kids (rarely) and I am trying to read Us Weekly and the cashiers tell me to move to another line so they can check me out faster (I know they are trying to help), don't they know I want to take longer.... jeez, it's not that often I am kidless and have time to read a magazine for pete's sake! Usually I end up tossing the mag in my cart and impulse buying it, conspiracy I tell ya.

    Well, I have to go now, I'm off to the grocery for the third time this week! Seriously. Enjoy your weekend everyone.

    Thursday, March 10, 2011

    watchin' my weight Wednesday- except it's Thursday

    What the heck happened to Wednesday? Oh, I was in the car all day shuttling kids everywhere in the pouring down rain... that's enough about that.

    OK, so I was trying to be healthy, when the kids and I got some of this horrid food, I ordered myself one of the new fruit and nut oatmeals. I had a freebie coupon too, so I felt like I was really being good. Hmm, it tasted pretty yummy. I think it is just instant oatmeal and they throw some fruit on top, but it has to be better than a cheeseburger, right?
    I was telling my friend how I was so proud of myself for resisting the fries and she said, "well you know it has more sugar than a Snickers." What? No way. It's oatmeal for goodness sake.

    So I checked. Snickers has 28.8 grams of sugar. The McDonald's oatmeal I ate has 32. I am not kidding. It just makes me sick. Not only because here is McD's fooling everyone again into thinking they might actually care about the people who eat at their restaurants. But also because I would have rather had the Snickers! Geezie-petes, I am going to stick with the plain old boring side salad from now on.

    My workout song to share this week:
    What is it about Dave Matthews that just rocks my world? I don't know. Could it be his awesome song writing? I so want him to write me a song, you can tell he totally worships his wife in his songs, lucky lady. Maybe it is the cute way he "dances" when he sings. Or maybe it is how he has incorporated fantastic jazz musicians in popular music for years. Actually it is the sly way he seems to make eye contact with you when he sings, gets me every time. I blush, not kidding, cannot watch him on tv. Big tall hubby doesn't get it at all, drives him crazy. Oh well.

    Anyway, this is one of my all-time favorite songs. It reminds me of my perfect summer day, not doing anything, being hot and sweaty and loving every minute of it. Our weather has been so cruddy lately, this is the perfect song for me to enjoy. I am so bummed the guys (DMB) are taking a summer off from touring to spend time with their families and I was really hoping to go enjoy a live show this summer, me and my big preggo self among all those teenagers smoking pot. Phooey. ( the missing the show part, not missing the pot part!)

    I like this song when I am running/jogging at a relatively slower pace (5.5 or so) just because it is relaxing and I let my imagination run wild (about Dave- just kidding big tall hubby!!!) I am not running right now, due to my growing belly, but I still use my treadmill and it works for hill climbs at a 4.0 pace.

    Tuesday, March 8, 2011

    confessions of a bag lady

    Ok, I admit it, I'm a bag lady. I love tote bags. There, I said it. I have gobs of them. I see them in stores and just want to snatch them up. I was just at Target this morning and they had some really cute ones for spring but I am trying to refrain from any extra purchases for a while. (They also had a really cute baby bib that said "subject of mommy's blog" but I resisted that too!) So I refrained. (I also resisted the undeniable urge to buy the latest "In Touch" magazine, the one with the cover story of the Bachelor saga. Oh, how I wanted that magazine. I am such a sucker for weekly rag mags, but that is another post.)

    Here is my latest bag purchase. (used my LL Bean gift card so I didn't really spend any extra $$$- see above) I am using it as a purse.
    I know there are so many cute and stylish purses available but for some reason, I am drawn to these bags. Maybe because they are roomy enough for diapers, sippy cups, extra clothes, candy, water bottles.... and boy are they durable. (LL Bean is not paying me to say this, but if you want to LL, give me a call, I'd be happy to mention you anytime. Love LL!) Did I mention they are washable too? I know celebs have all those huge leather bags with zippers and whips and chains on them, but that is just not me. I went to Nordstrom and saw a bunch of those really expensive bags (the kind you read about in the magazines but never see at Target!) and honestly, I thought they were kind of ugly. I'm sure Jessica Simpson and Nicole Richie would think my LL bags are hideous, thank goodness I don't live in L.A! I have a whole slew of these bags in various colors and sizes. I have the cutest madras one for spring, a pink one for summer, a huge one for the pool, a medium one for other stuff... see I am addicted.
    Like I said, I am a bag hound. Here are two more I use all the time. The one on the left is the one I usually take to the library. It is kind of wide and fat and can hold about 30 picture books. Can you believe we actually check out that many at a time? Well, we do. The poor library workers probably cringe when we walk in the door. This bag was a freebie from American Greetings- I bought a set amount of cards and it was a gift with purchase. Love it!

    The bag on the right is from my mom. She bought it at Crate and Barrel and gave it to me filled with fun kitchen stuff once for my birthday. Somehow it became my designated dry cleaners bag. (see the hangers poking out?) I like it too because it is washable (and reversable!). Big tall hubby and the kids know when it is errand day because I will have all kinds of totes lined up ready to go in the car the night before.

    I would love to have all sorts of those LL Bean bags monogrammed with words on them like "library books," "pool," "gym bag," etc. Wouldn't that be so cute? And so organized? If only our budget would allow it. **sigh** For now, I will keep using my menagerie of totes as I tool around town.

    To get your own super cute LL tote go to LL :)

    Monday, March 7, 2011

    scandalous, Monday stuff

    Last week, I took some time to make a few St. Patrick's Day decorations for our house. I have been looking at all the stores I frequent for a cute leprechaun or pot of gold or some brick-a-brack with no luck. I'm not Irish or Catholic but I still like to make it look festive around here, the kids really like it too. You'd think there would be some cute St. Patty's day stuff somewhere!!!
    I bought some cheap frames at Goodwill (even Goodwill was void of tacky decor items!) and painted a brown one white, got out my scrapbooking supplies and got to work. The frames were .99 each, one was still in the shrink wrap, never used. Don't you just love that!?
    Max always joins me for craft time. He grabs a bone or toy and sits right next to me the whole time I work. He has done this since he was a puppy. We listened to Michael Buble while Tanner took a nap and the big kids were at school.I just made some tags and picture-y things. I felt very uncreative or uninspired. But once they were done I felt down right scandalous. Did I just craft some items just for me? Holy cow, I couldn't tell you the last time I made something just because.
    I put some by the kitchen sink. Zoe says my leprechaun drawing is "weird." Thanks honey.
    And some went on our foyer table. Nothing too great or show-worthy but nonetheless, I hope to find some more time just for me in the next few weeks. It was heavenly.

    Since I was sick with the worst cold ever last week and we ended up having two showings for the house (both not interested), I did not get all my "things to do" things done. :( I was really bummed because I started the week so gung ho. So this week has a lot of repeats from last week.

    my things to do this week:
    get tax stuff ready
    deliver tax stuff to tax lady
    finish all thank you notes
    order pictures from February
    clean up baskets and organizers that fell in the basement (3 weeks ago!!!)

    my menus for this week:
    spaghetti and meatballs
    potato frittata
    pasta with peas and proscuitto
    pork fried rice
    salmon and roasted veggies

    Friday, March 4, 2011

    I'll just do anything to get a new Longaberger

    I just love to get these boxes in the mail... I get all giddy...
    Isn't it awesome that they are handmade in America (Ohio, no less!)? I always take a huge sniff when I open the box because they have a smell, not a bad one, just a familiar one, it is from the stain that is put on the baskets. Most of you know I have a nice collection of Longabergers, and I simply love the Homestead (where the factory is located). I secretly wish I was a member of the Longaberger family so I could furnish my home with their loveliness. Oh well, for now a new basket every now and then will just have to tide me over.
    Here is the basket I just got, it is called a "Kiddie Purse."
    While it is cute and adorable, isn't it? The main reason I have bought a Kiddie Purse in the past is to serve as a keepsake. I know, I know, so silly and frivolous.
    When I was pregnant with Zoe someone gave me one of these and said, "now you take this to the hospital and have the nurses stamp the newborn baby's footprints on the inside of the lid." Um, ok, I was a Longaberger fan, so I just went with it. (This is Parker's basket by the way, so cute.)

    I was a good mommy and made sure that all three of my kids have their stamped Kiddie Purses. They do like to look at them and remark on their feet. I know the boys are kind of like, "whatever mom." Someday, I know they will appreciate them.

    So why did I order another Kiddie Purse?

    Because of this little guy. He kind of surprised us. And we can't wait to meet him on or about July 26h. Yep, Sarah, you were right. How in the heck did you predict this after I mentioned my flu shot? You must have uterine ESP or something!

    Anyway, after the shock wore off for us. We waited a while to tell anyone, it took us a while to wrap our minds around this one. We told a few people after the first ultrasound. I just had the second ultrasound on Wednesday and it confirmed his "boyness." We have never found out the baby's gender but this guy is going to be sharing a room and we wanted to try to get ready for that. (Actually we want to help his big sister and brothers get ready.) It is kind of strange knowing he is in fact a he. I am wondering who he will look like and how in the heck am I going to stay on top of all these kids?!

    Like with any upcoming baby, I am scared, excited, nervous, exhausted, and thrilled all at the same time. I promise to keep everyone posted on his/my progress. (As for now, I feel like a big ginormous cow but that's to be expected right?! If I would quit being sick I'd feel tons better!)

    Alternative post titles I considered for today:
    Oops we did it again
    Fore! (we do live on a golf course you know!)
    Well, the kids have always wanted bunk beds...
    I really like sleep deprivation, I do!
    No I didn't eat all the cookies, I'm just pregnant!
    I just love that newborn smell
    Another reason not to get rid of all that baby gear in my basement
    I gained a couple pounds, so I figured might as well use them to my advantage
    This is my excuse to eat M&M's again

    Thursday, March 3, 2011

    While mommy is away

    Seriously, can I not leave the house, ever?

    When you come home (I am speaking to my mommy blog friends) from being at the grocery or an appointment, do you cringe as you pull in the garage? Do you wonder if there will be some unspeakable mess left for you to clean up? Do you ever wonder if all your kids will be un-maimed and unscarred? Do you walk into the house and sniff really big hoping to smell nothing? Do you look cautiously around the corner of where you entered afraid of what you might find? Do you listen for crying or total silence? (Both of which can be bad, really bad.)

    Really? Me neither.
    Parker's version of the African plains...
    Tanner's version of self expression
    I might never leave my house again.

    Wednesday, March 2, 2011

    watchin' my weight Wednesday

    Music motivates me, a lot. If I am feeling stressed or sad, I just need a few minutes of some Frank Sinatra or Michael Buble (or the Grease soundtrack) and I am all set. Good songs on my IPod (or in my spinning class) really get me working harder. I swear, the Black Eyed Peas come on and I have to hold myself back from dancing, so I do the next best thing, run faster. :)

    I just discovered that my library participates in a service called "Freegal." It is kind of like I-tunes but on a much smaller scale. You can go to the site and download a certain number of songs for free. (My library permits 3 songs per week.) You just have to plug in your library card number and a pin so it is sooooo easy!

    I found that they don't have a humongous selection but I did download some Britney Spears and Glee songs, so they are current-ish. I get so excited when a new song comes on as I am trudging away on that dang elliptical, I swear I don't even look at the time passing as long as the music is pumpin'.

    Here is my new favorite song (Besides Lady Gaga- "Born This Way"- that girl is a genius, even if people say she is copying Madonna. Good idea to copy the best right? That's why I want to be Martha Stewart when I grow up!)

    Cee Lo- "Forget You"- I love, love, love it, just makes me want to dance. I love the Motown influence and this video is so cute. If I was in like 6th grade, I'd be watching it all the time, you know when you have time to sit around and watch videos. (Well I did when I was in 6th grade anyway!)
    You might notice that there are "other" versions of this song, he originally released it with a different title, (you'll get it when you watch it) and I am so glad he did a clean version. The kids and I were dancing to it today on the way to preschool. Don't you just love car-dancing?

    Tuesday, March 1, 2011


    I am giving myself a big hug because, dagnabit, I am sick again. Seriously. I felt the sniffles coming Saturday and hoped it was just allergies from the teensie bit warm weather. By Sunday, my big tall hubby was calling me "Rudolph" as in the reindeer, because my nose is so stuffy that I sound exactly like him. If I could figure out a way to put my voice on here so you could witness it, I would. The resemblance is uncanny.

    So of course, what happens when you are sick? Plenty.

    • your daughter needs new dance shoes, now! ($85!! yikes!) why do kids' feet have to grow so darn fast?!
    • your sons also get runny noses, snot flying everywhere
    • you run out of tissues, trip to Walgreens #1
    • you have to deliver Girl Scout cookies, now, because...
    • some dingaling wants to see your house, tomorrow, so....
    • you have to spend the next 24 hours or so cleaning for a showing, grr
    • you run out of Sudafed, trip to Walgreens #2
    • find dog stain in daughter's room that you spent one hour cleaning, have to clean it for showing, grr, again
    • since you have a house showing, you have to put all your other "to do" items aside for now