Friday, October 22, 2010

Free Association...

I'm still trying to find a consistent blog hop, but it always seems like there are different days each week I can take a time-out and participate, so it's hard to commit.

However, I love the free association prompt at Fill In The Blank Friday!

So, here goes...if you are new to my blog, welcome! You will soon learn that I'm kind of nuts, hopefully more than a little funny, true to myself, and purposefully use lots of incorrectly placed commas.**

I am...unique. And very picky about food. It would be nearly impossible for even my husband to consistently pick what I will order. Just when you think Eggplant Parmesan is my favorite Italian dish BAM! There I go ordering Gnocchi and sausage in vodka sauce.

I wish...that losing weight was a snap. I am trying, but again, it's hard to deny my cravings. Baby steps will work eventually, right? Please don't tell me I have to start sprinting, literally and figuratively.

I I am so, so lucky to have the best parents, in-laws, sister, right down to my cousins. Most Saturdays I would much rather spend at a 5 year old's birthday party with my family than out at a trendy restaurant. I also like Indian food.

I a stick shift like a madwoman. Our next car will not be a 5-speed, so I'm trying to get all the Zoom Zoom love in while I can.

I hope...that November 2 will be a wake up call for America that no matter what side of the fence we're on, it is TIME to start working together. (I also hope that a Libertarian candidate in any major race in NC will get at least 12% of the vote so we can lock our party into the ballot, debates, etc. It is time that our philosophy starts being recognized.)

I think...that I should start reading more nonfiction and less US Weekly.

I was...planning to never get married or have children, true story. Then I met my husband. Ten years later, I cannot imagine life any other way.

That was FUN! Here's to hoping I will make this a regular feature.

**After re-reading my post, I should probably point out that I talk about food. A lot.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Winner winner...

So, yesterday, when Angie informed me that I had won her Veeve cosmetics giveaway (I am a beauty product who-are, so I cannot express how excited I am to try this stuff out!) I jokingly said "wow, now I kind of hope you don't win my giveaway because people will think we're in kahoots!" (Okay, kahoots was her word, but I liked it, so I used it.)

I swear to you we're not! I can make my hubby get on here and verify for y'all if you want me to that last night he pulled a scrap of paper with Angie's name on it out of a little pink bucket while we were watching Dennis Miller on Bill O'Reilly (I LOVE DENNIS MILLER...DENNIS MILLER FOR PRESIDENT!) I am old school like that. No for me, mostly because with people getting 5 entries for joining the newsletter, I really didn't want to require everyone to have to post that many comments. I made a tally sheet of how many entries each person got (Angie had 10, by the way) and then filled out that many papers with their name. Simple as that.

But in the end, I love each and every one of my followers, and I'm so glad to have this community, but the truth is it's exciting that she won b/c she has been loyal from the beginning. I mean it when I say I wish we could be friends in real life! Thanks to everyone who entered, and if you are interested in any of the products, let me know.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

WMW: I'm Copping Out...

Prompt Numero Uno: You know you're stressed when...

So, I always try to be true and honest in every post I make, especially when following the prompts of Working Mommy Wednesday, because I really appreciate those girls and everything they have to say. We are a community going through many of the same things.

However, all week I've been thinking about how to mold my Blog Giveaway (LAST DAY!) and trying to get some good Ebates referral money** into the working mommy wednesday topic. I know it's a total plug, and I know it's slightly tacky that I would promote my stuff for my own good on my blog, but hey, you know what stresses me out?


And you know where I turn when I get stressed out? Retail Therapy. It's a vicious cycle, for sure. I NEED new shoes, and I don't mean that in a Carrie Bradshaw way, I literally mean I need shoes because more than a year later, I cannot fit in my smart work shoes from pre-Jacob days. I need brown dress shoes, black dress shoes, and black comfortable but still office appropriate loafers. And because I have huge, super wide monster feet and I stand up and walk a lot at work, I have to buy pretty pricey shoes, and I have to buy them online.

So when Naturalizer or is having a 20% off code, I tend to go hawg-wild, y'all. I have to order a lot of pairs of shoes until I eventually find one or two I can stand to wear for longer than 98 minutes. That ain't easy. Currently, I have 3 shiny shoe boxes in my office drawer, and a shopping cart loaded with 6 more pairs. It is almost worse than bathing suit or bra shopping.

Except that I only have to look at my feet.

And shoes are fun.

**So, if you haven't been introduced to ebates yet, allow me to make the introduction. I earned back about $75 off what I spent on Christmas gifts last year, and my shoe purchases alone net me about $40 a year. Seriously, all you do is sign up, shop through their link (often finding awesomely good coupon codes along the way) and every quarter you get a check in the mail. No scam, ladies.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Crying Over Spilt Milk...

So, as part of our life-improvement movement, I have joined two of my favorite lady bloggers in a Bible Study series.

I am a Christian, and although I accepted Christ once at a young age, I have the feeling that because of the damage I did in college and my young twenties denouncing Christ and his place in my life, I believe that my true "salvation moment" did not happen until just over a year ago, as I held my 5-day old miracle in my arms and prayed.

Since then, it hasn't always been rainbows and sunshine and ra-ra-rah...I still get stressed and I still yell and I still cuss and I'm still not perfect, but as my best friend told me way earlier this year, I seem settled and at peace, which I was not when she knew me 10 years ago. I was wild and free and ready to take on anything, but with that wild and free came an unhinged, out-of-control feeling.

I am slowly finding my way into being a true Christian, which means only praying and learning from God exactly what he holds for me in life. I can pray with the best of them, and I do it multiple times a day, but usually the best place to find God's answers to those prayers is in His Word. And I'm no good at reading the Bible on my own.

So D over at Unpolished Parenting is heading up a casual Bible Study for those of us that want to find some of those answers. So far, Julia with Work Wife Mom Life has joined us, and we're excited to get started. The devotional guide we are using is Linda Vujnov's Spilt Milk: A Devotion for Moms. It looks perfect, with it's cheeky cover of a bowl of Froot Loops (no, really, that's the way they are spelled...I just found out this year).

If anyone wants to join us, email D at

Monday, October 18, 2010

Just a Friendly Reminder...

Do you guys love a giveaway or NOT?!

I mean, I am sitting here all day with my handy new clock radio listening to Katy Perry sing about her damn skintight jeans 14 times a day just so I can try (along with about 128,637 other Raleigh area residents) to win a damn Dolce and Gabbana purse from our local pop radio station.(I also just finished listening to Taylor Swift blabber again about being a careless man's careful daughter, whatever the hell that means.)

So I know ya'll can take the time out to just vote for me and get extra entries into my giveaway for totally free, totally awesome smelly-good house stuff from Scentsy!

So ENTER! Only 2 more days and 3 hours left...

Friday, October 15, 2010

October 15

Today is National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day. Even if you've never suffered a loss yourself, I'm sure that you know someone who has, and it is devastating.

Just before I conceived Jacob, I had what doctors believe was a Chemical Pregnancy. To recap, basically my body thought it was pregnant and exhibited all of the signs and hormones needed to house a fetus. When I started bleeding just before my scheduled OB appointment, I freaked out. And when I took a test at the doctor and got called in to sit down with my OB, I already knew the news she would give me. At the time, being childless and yearning for a baby, worried that this was the start of a long, drawn-out fertility battle, this felt almost harder to me than a real miscarriage.

There were no answers, and nothing even really to mourn. How could I explain to people when they asked me that I felt like I lost a child even though there was likely never a child there to lose?

Of course, I now know how much more difficult it is to have a miscarriage. I can console myself with the fact that I did not lose an actual baby, and that if that had been a child I would have never had Jacob roughly 10 1/2 months after sitting in that doctors office and mourning the loss of a pregnancy.

And I know that because I have had friends and family members that have suffered the loss of a child through miscarriage, stillbirth, SIDS, and other afflictions.

So today I do not remember my own loss, but I do remember the loss of my niece. It is not my story to tell, so the only detail I will share is that her gestational age was 21 weeks, and although I never got to meet her, I will always remember her. And tonight, I will light a candle in her memory, and the memory of so many others.

Our First Toddler Tantrum!

First things first, enter my giveaway! And don't forget, you can get an extra entry every time you vote for me on Picket Fence and leave a comment!

Ah, the bliss of parenthood before you reach certain "stages". I love how I should now be able to fit not only my foot, but my entire right leg in mouth with all the times I've said "when Jacob does ________, I will respond by doing _______". And then he does that thing that you weren't expecting to have to react to for at least another few months (biting, throwing food, hitting the dog, not listening the fifteenth time I've taken his hand out of the water bowl) and it just kind of takes you completely by surprise.

Last night, he had his first meltdown. And while my husband and I always said we were going to be Perfect McPerfectsons who handled the situation exactly as we should (ignore it until he was finished), instead we bursted into completely unexpected laughter. And then spent the next 120 seconds or so trying to hide our laughter from our poor son, who was just all out of sorts.

The reason? Because Da-da wanted to give him his medicine, instead of Ma-ma. Bad move, parents! I have never seen a more asinine request be met with a more ridiculous emotional response, but hey, we're dealing with a 13 month old here. Daddy and I were sitting side by side on the recliner (I, the rule breaker, was sitting on the arm of the recliner) and Jacob was standing beside us in the floor, being a crankypants and wanting me to pick him up. He loves medicine, so this should have been uncomplicated, but when I said "go sit in Daddy's lap" he threw his little fists in the air, turned in the opposite direction of us, and threw himself on the floor, complete with banging fists and crying.

Oh, we tried so hard to hold it in, but it was seriously the funniest thing I have ever seen. Imagine a tiny toddler (barely 18 pounds and all of 28 1/2 inches tall to put it in perspective) in his cutesy pajamas throwing a full blown temper tantrum, red faced, blonde hair standing up on end, runny nose. He did it three more times: get up, reach for me, I told him calmly to sit in daddy's lap, turn, fall, tantrum, rinse, repeat. HILARIOUSNESS! I thought I was going to feel upset, frustrated, anxious, angry, guilty, whatever: I felt NONE OF THAT! I just felt sheer joy at the fact that A) this was seriously funny and B) that I could recognize this is normal behaviour for his age and that the best thing to do was just remain calm and firm.

What's the point of this story? I don't know, I'll be honest. I just wanted to share that maybe things you are dreading won't be as bad as you are expecting. After 4 or 5 times of the tantrum cycle, it ended just as quickly as it began, and he walked right over to my husband, reached up, and happily sat in Daddy's lap as I gave him his antibiotics.

I'm not even going to say what I will do next time, but I can tell you that I do not yet know if I would have the same reaction if my kid was face-to-face with a dirty grocery store floor. I may just end up being one of those moms that do the kid-snatch and leave a half-full grocery cart right in the aisle. Just goes to show...the best made plans are often laid to waste!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

I Went Looking For a Thursday Blog Hop...

All morning, I scoured my friends' blogs for some way to make some new connections on the Interwebs. Thursday seems to be a good day for Blog Hopping, not sure why, but I still haven't found one that just seems to fit. Well, I hobbled over to my friend Angee's blog and saw she did a really neat one today:

I like when they come with nice, gentle, built-in prompts! We'll see how it goes this week.

Outside my window.. is a parking lot and gas station. Oh so thrilling...
The time is.. 4:07PM
Today I feel..hopeful for so many things.
I am thinking.. it's almost quittin' time!
At the moment, I am thankful.. for so, so many things. Mostly that I have a healthy child and a supportive family.
I am pee when I'm done with this.
I am wearing..uncomfortable, too-big work pants, a too-short top, and a cardigan and cute scarf.
I wish.. that young children never had to die.
I am reading..lots and lots of blogs, with the Sunday newspaper and an occasional gossip mag thrown in.
I am working many things I gave up for the rest of the day.
I am hoping..that my Scentsy party and Giveaway is a success!
I am hearing..the crappy easy listening station we have to keep on at work. Can't wait for my new mp3 clock radio to arrive.
I bet you didn't know..that this is the first year I haven't been to the State Fair in my whole life.
One of my favorite.. foods is Caprese (mozzarella, basil, tomato). Yum. I should have been Italian.
Weekend Plans.. Friday: some type of alcohol. Saturday: Dave Ramsey workshop. Sunday: the Scentsy party and hopefully some snuggle time.

Another Giveaway? No Way!

Ladies, I have something to share with you.

And I'm really (literally) putting myself out there with this one. As in, if you click the link you will have my whole name, phone number, email address, etc. (Doesn't that get you all excited???) But it's because I am sharing my newest business venture with you girls.

If you know me in real life, you know that I've always kind of scoffed at the home party businesses out there. Tupperware? I love it (some of my favorite kitchen items were passed down from my grandma, mom, and mother-in-law...okay, maybe the ones from my mom weren't exactly passed down but more, um, permanently borrowed) but that crap is WAY expensive! Pampered Chef is nice, but I think I've been cooking long enough that I either already have the gadgets I need, or have found a quicker way without said gadgets. As far as the make-up companies go...meh...I prefer the tactile Sephora-Ulta-Target beauty section style browsing too much.

But then I won a blog giveaway from Mrs. Foreste. And I met a wonderful woman who sells Scentsy products. And after I received my warmer and Camu Camu scent, my office smelled so good that I had clients and co-workers constantly asking what made our branch smell so delicious. So I ordered some more smells, and I was like a kid two weeks before Christmas waiting for them to come in. I couldn't believe I was so excited over a warmer and some scented wax, but honestly, I AM A GIRL. We all get like that!

Eventually, I offered to do what we call a "basket" party, and my consultant sent me samples to let my friends, family, and co-workers smell all the different scents and place orders. And it was SO EASY, that I thought...maybe this is just the perfect fit. So now I am a consultant with Scentsy, and I couldn't be more excited to share with one of you the rewards of my hard work. Scentsy offers hostesses all kinds of free product and half-price product credits, and since I am having my own Open House this weekend, one of you lucky readers will earn something from my free product credits. Something worth $40!

I am gifting one of my lovely readers with their choice of a Full-Size Warmer and 3 Scentsy bars to grace their home, office, or anything else. As you can tell, I really believe in these products! Please feel free to visit my website: . Even if you do not win the giveaway, you can purchase directly from my website, or contact me to find out about hosting your own party, either in person or through the internet. If you have been thinking about joining as a consultant yourself, I'd love to take this journey with you. I have a terrific sponsor/director myself, and you would be joining our team. The requirements are easy to meet and the stuff practically sells itself!

On to the rules: to enter, you only must be a follower of my blog and tell me which warmer you would choose, along with at least one scent that sounds intriguing to you. (Don't worry, if you win I won't hold you to those, you can always change your mind).

For extra entries, I would love it if you would vote for me on Picket Fence blogs (1 entry per vote, per day) and/or blog about this giveaway (2 entries) and I will give you 5 entries if you click on the link to sign up for my Scentsy newsletter (it's only once per month, no spam!) Just leave me comments telling me what you've done! Good luck ladies...I will choose a winner next Wednesday, you have until 8PM (EST) on 10/20 to enter.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

WMW: Me, Overwhelmed?

I can't believe I went a whole week without blogging. I've missed it, I have to say, but this prompt is right on time because, honestly, work has been a little overwhelming lately. Like anything else, my job ebbs and flows and sometimes I have 50 things I'm working on at once, and sometimes I resort to cleaning out old files in my office or in our storage room because I can't find anything else to work on.

Now is one of the more overwhelming times, so when I saw the prompt for Working Mom Wednesday today, I thought "wow, life is coming full circle"! Because honestly, this is what I do when I need to take a break.

I am a planner and a delegator, so it's not that I have anything pressing that is just stressing me to my core, I don't have that kind of job. I have the kind where I am happily plodding along in my planned tasks for that day when BAM! a problem falls from the sky right onto my desk and the rest of my day is spent cleaning up the mess. That's part of the reason I love it, for the change and flexibility and excitement of it all. But until recently, I've never been a person who can sit in an office and look at reports and do paperwork and make cold calls all day, so even on the best of days I need a break to liven life up a bit and get out of my slump.

And that's where you ladies come in! Blogging to me is a stress reliever. It's my cigarette break, coffee break, get up and stretch and stroll around the office chatting with my co-workers break. Other people may go get a snack or talk about Dancing With the Stars when they need to "take 5". I come and check on my fellow mom-bloggers, enter giveaways, share a little piece of what happened in my life recently. I think the other reason I turn here is because I am selfish. I'm just going to be honest: I am not a friend you want in real life. I don't send letters, I don't like to talk on the phone, and I am way too busy to make a lot of time even for the people I care about most. I communicate by email and Facebook more than anything, and I have a very good friend who can probably tell you about the time she asked how I was doing and I actually responded with a link to a blog post. Now, that's sad.

But what's not sad is the last 10 minutes I've spent typing this, and the excitement I feel by knowing at my next breather I will be checking out all my fellow WMW poster's thoughts! I am returning to what I was working on feeling refreshed and ready to work again instead of burnt-out and ready to go home. And for that, ladies, I thank you for allowing me to share!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Working Mommy Wednesday: Pushups? FML...

(*Disclaimer: I know that what FML stands for is not befitting of the Christian example I am trying to set and follow, but I just discovered the phrase and you know what? It fits. Jesus is the only perfect one, the rest of us are just trying.*)

I open Julia's prompt today and see a post about PUSHUPS. Really? I'll have to admit, I was pissed. First of because I used to be able to do pushups, the strong-man kind, back when I could also do a split and call myself a dancer, but now I must resort to the wall-kind or the knee-kind, if I am even attempting them at all. Which makes me feel like a fat cow. Second, because even with my newfound discovery of SparkPeople, my commitment to eating better, taking in more water, and trying to be less sedentary, the last thing I want to do is turn my blog into diet central. Luckily, her reasons why and how to do push-ups provided me with a goal: 20 a day for the rest of the month. This is great because I can't commit to walking every day, but I can commit to 20 pushups and walking at least 3 days a week. And small, attainable goals are good.

And then I continued reading and noticed that today's prompt is actually just a Top 10 list. Man, I LOVE me a Top 10 list, from David Letterman all the way to my blog friend Kelley, Top 10 lists are AWESOME. And I wish that mine was going to be just that awesome, but I guess since I have free reign and I don't want this to be about being healthy, I will take this moment to return to the roots of this blog and make a list of my Top 10 Favorite Things About My Son.

10) He is a genius. I mean, I know every mom says that about their kid, but what 13-month old do you know that can say "go-gurt" to his daycare teacher every day at 4:30 because he knows it's snack time and he's about to get his favorite. thing. ever. Or how about how yesterday he was "reading" his Maisy's Favorite Toys book in the car and turned to the page with the Tractor and Train on it (vehicles with wheels) and shouted "CAR"? Can your baby do that?

9) He chooses edamame over grilled cheese. Now I KNOW he nees to fatten up, but you have to appreciate a child who learns early to love his veggies. (This will come back to bite me in about 3 months when he suddenly starts to refuse to eat anything green.)

8) He still is an open-mouth kisser. Even though we're starting to get just the teensy-weensiest bit self-conscious about this in public, there's nothing cuter than when you say "can I get a kiss?" and his little toddler mouth comes towards you wide open and raring to go and plants a big smacker on your lips.

7) Except maybe sitting on the floor next to each other while brushing your teeth. We got the grins and giggles toothbrush not long ago and his little fingers wrapped around that fat little toothbrush is so adorable I want to die.

6) He is totally fearless (and reckless). This guy loves to climb anything, and his favorite game is getting on the couch or bed and throwing himself against the pillows. Sometimes I swear he's going to fly right off.

5) He already knows to look up to older kids. He follows his nearly 3-year old niece around like she is the best thing in the world (I mean, I can't blame him) and has so much fun playing with older kids.

4) But he'd still rather play with Mama or Daddy any day. His new favorite thing is to bring us a book, yell "BUH", and let us read about 2 1/2 sentences before grabbing it, and closing it while saying "ALL Done."

3) The kid loves to be naked. After his bath, he will play "catch me if you can" as long as possible, and there is nothing I love more than chasing a naked toddler around the upstairs part of the house, especially if he leaves the hooded towel on like a superhero cape.

2) He makes me better. I want to be more patient, I want to cook more nutritious meals, I want to exercise more, and I want to spend more time with my family (immediate and extended) because of him. He led me back to God and Christ. What could be better?

1) His laugh can change whatever I'm feeling into pure joy. Seriously, when that little sweet blondie smiles at me with love, what do I have to be angry/stressed/upset about? Absolutely NOTHING!

Thanks to anyone who joined up from Working Mommy Wednesday, and feel free to join us today or any time!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Am I Really the Example You Want to Follow?

Ahem. After the last post, I am sure that you are surprised to find me participating in Mom Friendly Meals Monday. I was not exagerrating when I called myself Obese. Really. My BMI is 35. I found that out today when I joined Spark People. See, Step 1: I CAN CHANGE!

I refuse to participate in anything called "McFatty" anything, but I do want to give a little update since it is, after all, my first day on the wagon. Here is how I'm trying to make this lifestyle change work: I am NOT going hog-wild-crazy on a diet, people. I can't. I've done it before with disatrous results, b/c I am a giant Yo-Yo. Lose 5, gain 6, eat really well for 3 days and then say SCREW YOU, FOOD! So, today I had 1 hot dog (not 2), a container of easy mac, and frozen veggies. 2 servings of frozen veggies (this is where you lavish praise). Sadly, this is an improvement.

But, here is what went RIGHT today:

*This morning, I really wanted a Salted Caramel thingy from the evil place. Instead, I went to Mickey D's and got the healthiest breakfast item they have: the egg mcmuffin. And plain old coffee. Which, once a little Splenda and flavored creamer was added, satisfied me a little bit.

*I have not had a soda yet today. I have had almost 6 servings of water. (I will drink a soda on the way home, but only after my 6 servings.)

*Went to Target on my lunch break and got yogurt, applesauce, and cookies. With chocolate on them. I told you, I ain't going cold turkey, but when a 3PM snack craving hits I will eat ONE serving size and faithfully put the rest back in the cabinet.

*Resisted the 3PM chocolate craving and had applesauce and yogurt instead.

*Joined Spark People and I am faithfully logging every single thing I put in my mouth. So far today I'm way high on the sodium (as expected) but hitting my targets for all the other categories. Yay me!

OKAY. So you came here for a recipe? This one is untested and on the menu this week, but SO easy, fairly healthy, and in Cooking Light's recent issue with the pantry staples article. I love Cooking Light. I am just giving you the link directly: Tex-Mex Confetti Pizza!


Saturday, October 2, 2010

I'm Not Who I Claim to Be...

A rare Saturday confession...

I've been struggling a lot lately, with the fact that I am struggling. It seems counterproductive to being a good mom/wife/person/Christian that I have the luxury of being the first person awake in my house on a Saturday at 8:45AM yet I can complain that I am always busy and have too much going on to breathe. I have it SO EASY compared to my mother, who had me just before she finished nursing school and had to take care of the house, the baby, and find time to study. Or so many others out there who have gone through a separation with their baby's father and have to do it all on their own. Or the parents whose children have had to endure medical issues, multiple doctor visits, surgeries, and complicated feeding schedules.

And now I must confess: I am lazy. I have motivation issues. I am obese. I don't take care of myself or eat right (damn Starbucks for re-introducing that Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate this fall...). And I desperately want to change that. Finally, I feel that I am making a commitment I can follow through on.

The time is right: October is my absolute favorite month, and this October began for me with a 3-day weekend and the most beautiful fall weather you could imagine. I joined a work-sponsored wellness program that starts at work on Monday. I am starting a new home-party business with Scentsy (more on that in a couple of weeks with a giveaway) that motivated me to get my house company ready since I've invited oh, about 50 people over in 2 weeks. And this new drive has caused a sort of pay-it-forward morning for me.

I got up and began preparing breakfast for my family, when usually I lie in bed until the last possible second on Saturday and then bring Jacob in to nurse while hubby goes downstairs to cook. After breakfast, we had wonderful family time playing for an hour or so and then we let Jacob play on his own while we started dusting and cleaning the clutter out of our living room. I think starting to clean before he was down for his nap really drove me to do more. I usually wait until he's asleep, get on the web for a while, sip my coffee and watch College Gameday, and then clean for a half hour or so.

Now, I have clean baseboards, doors, the top of the fridge, a dusted, vacuumed, and mopped kitchen and living room, and significantly reduced clutter. My nearly 3 hours of work possibly burned my sensible breakfast's calories, and my ensuing cool shower was better for my hair, skin, electric bill, and possibly even environment than my usual 15 minute hot ones.

I'm using the rest of my "me" time effectively by sending out e-vites for my Open House and getting ready for a family gathering.

And my underwear even matches my shirt.

Who is ready for a whole new me?