Same Blog-New Place

This is now my old blog address-I am now one of those Wordpress geeks and my blog now sits at . So, please visit me there and if you subscribe to it, you will be my new best friend and chocolate chip cookies will fall from the sky.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Survival of the Fittest

I can now add another notch on my belt, surviving another Thanksgiving dinner. The turkey passed the test and I think this may indeed be the only dish I can cook to perfection. Since the turkey went so well, I was hoping to be forgiven for the burnt pumpkin pie that followed. I've decided that next year's pie will come ready made from Village Inn. Then, my dinner will be perfect and I will win Betty Crocker's Best Thanksgiving Dinner Award. Amen.

Everyone left earlier then usual, for my brother and daughter had to work in the wee hours of the morning, so I was able to get to bed at a fairly decent time to get some sleep before getting up early for our traditional JCPenney's Christmas globe.

Every year, that darn company opens an hour earlier then the year before. This year, it was four a.m. Don't they realize that I am not a morning person and to make me half to get up at the crack of dawn is like pulling out my wisdom teeth without Novocaine? I will definitely be writing them a nasty letter letting them know how we must get these globes every year because we've been doing it for ten years now and could they PLEASE be nice and not open so early?

We made it though, loaded up on coffee with my kidneys threatening to bring on a very large kidney stone if I drank anymore caffeine. Afterwards, we headed off to Target to try to score some door buster deals-door buster? They should call it ball crushing, leg pulling, face smashing deals, cause that's what it looked like to me.

I've never had the chance to be at a store at opening time on Black Friday. It was crazy. They were lined up like hungry tigers that hadn't been fed for a week and the zoo keeper was at the front of the line, holding up one big juicy New York steak on a fork. Then, they opened the doors and said, "Come and get it."

In about five minutes time, the movies were gone, the electronics were snatched, the appliances were dropped in carts and the lines to check out started forming. It was a nightmare. Everywhere you went, a check out line appeared out of thin air and continued all the way to the back of the store. I looked at my one item in my cart-the one thing that I was lucky to get, and wondered if saving money was worth it.

We (my mom, sister, Emily and I) decided to go wait over at their Starbucks area and get some drinks and wait it out. After about a half an hour, the lines were only getting worse, so we decided to just get it over with. My sister had spotted a new checkout area that wasn't long, so we ran over to see if we'd get lucky. No such luck. Apparently, news travels fast when it comes to mad shoppers. We still waited about an hour to checkout and I tell ya, when you have alot of time on your hands, you have to get creative to keep your sanity. I casually leaned towards the people in front of me and listened to their conversation-I'm bad, I know. Oh also, I mentally counted how many times the lady behind me could hit her cart into mine every time we moved.
I finally made it up to the counter and the smiling checkout guy (who deserves a medal for keeping his upbeat mood) checked out my item and wished me a happy holiday. We were off to try to go to Walmart, but before we left, we got wind that the Walmart across town wasn't very busy, so we rushed-wait, I have to laugh my butt off first after saying "rushed"- I meant to say, after crawling through traffic, we got across town and had better luck with their deals. I think about this time, I was starting to feel the effects of no sleep and hoped that I didn't pass out on the store floor, for I was sure that the shoppers would not notice and I would go home with foot prints plastered on my forehead.

We ended up at one last store and I found a very cute holiday dress for Emily for a great deal and after a tiny bit of protest from my mom over the color, I won, and now Emily will be paying the price this holiday for my love of the color black.
Before my sister headed off, she gave me a special surprise-a pair of Minnetonka boots that she bought and decided she didn't want them.
Now, I've never heard of them before and I also didn't know that these babies run about one hundred and fifty bucks. You see, since becoming a mom, I don't pay over twenty for any clothes or shoes for myself-Wait, I've probably never paid a hundred bucks for ANY shoes EVER.
Ahhh, sometimes it would be nice to live my sister's no-children-unless-you-consider-their-dog-a-child life. Not really, kids, I love you and that's the story I'm sticking to.
Anyway, expensive never felt so good and I have found heaven for my feet. I will love them and kiss them and never let a drop of bad weather touch them. Ok, maybe I will only be able to wear them in the house. Thanks sis, for giving me a taste of the "spoiled" life.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

No Charlie Brown Christmas tree this year

The hubby surprised me this year with a new Christmas tree. If you remember from last year, we had a tiny, Charlie Brown looking one. The new tree is one of those that have the lights connected to it, so you don't have to drag the tangled lights out of the garage and hope to find the one that doesn't work and curse until you end up throwing them out the window.
This kind of tree is also awesome in the sense that it comes in three pieces that fold up like an umbrella, which will be nice for storage since I've gone through about ten trees after loosing branches or the color coded wires were no longer color coded and you end up with a Picasso looking tree trying to match them all up.

We voted on the colors for decorations-have I ever told you that I have a thing about having properly color coordinated Christmas trees? Yes, it is a sickness-one that drives my son absolutely CRAZY. He insists that Christmas tree decorations must be mismatched, with handmade decorations brought home from school and the more mismatched, the better. He must of done something horrible in a past life to be stuck with a mom like me.

This year, I gave the kids and hubby color combination choices; red, brown and green, red and green, or neon multicolored-I thought I was bending a bit for him on that one.

He didn't like the whole "neon" look, so he voted on the first choice. I was happy since I really wanted a brown theme this year. So, we decorated the tree in our official themed colors and I thought it turned out well.

I love it when we get to put the tree up, because I get to take bokeh photos. For those of you who don't know what that is, this definition is taken from PW's site:

Bokeh, which is pronounced bow-kay or bow-keh, refers to the wonderful out-of-focus light and shapes and colors you find in the background of many photos taken with a digital camera.

Here are some photos to show you what I came up with.

Ooh, the brown bulbs are so pretty.

And here is what happens when your five year old helps.

You don't know how badly I want to move those two bulbs that are touching. I won't though, in the spirit of Christmas.

I hope this lands me an extra present under the tree this year.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

From our family to yours

Christmas early-another giveaway!

Boy, has this been a week!
First, I get to do a review and giveaway for CSN Stores and now, I get to do a review for SkinCareRX!
You are going to wonder who I've been sleeping with to get so lucky.
I've been looking for a moisturizer and facial cleanser for some time now and I haven't had much luck. Either they are too greasy, not greasy enough or it made me break out.
When SkinCareRX contacted me to try out their M2 Collection Bundle, I was sceptical but I decided to give it a try. With the holidays coming, I really was desperate.
The Bundle includes M2 Exfoliating Cleanser (6.76 fl. oz.), M2 Skin Refinish 20%(1.7 fl. oz.), and M2 Skin Recovery Moisturizer (1.7 fl. oz.).
I tried this trio for a week and I tell ya, my face ended up being baby butt smooth!
Now, as always, I told them that I would only try these products if I could give one of my wonderful and awesome readers a package too (Christmas is coming, so I need some brownie points ;) )
They said, OK!
So, now one of you lucky dogs will receive a M2 Collection Bundle too!
Retail value:
Now it's your turn.
To enter, you need to comment and tell me what other product from SkinCareRX you would love Santa to bring you this Christmas.
If you feel you need more luck, you can get more entries by following me (please leave a separate comment telling me so)
You can tweet about it (ditto on the commenting )
You can post about it-send me the link please in your comment (leave me 3 more comments)
Ok, that's it. Now, go win this contest, baby!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Getting ready for Turkey Day

As Thanksgiving Day approaches, I've been running around, trying to get things together. I have most of my supplies for the big dinner, but I still need to get the table cloth, plates and utensils. I also have to do the heavy duty cleaning yet, so I may give the illusion that I have a perfect house.
It's been hard to fit the holidays in this year with all the projects I've given myself. I've had to let a project go, due to technical difficulties-meaning, I ran into some snags along the way. That project would be the magazine. It was a hard decision to make and I might be able to start it back up next year. I'm sad about it, but it may be for the best.
We went shopping on Saturday because I like to torture myself like that. I had some major coupon savings and they were all going to expire after Saturday. So, we rushed around to buy for the relatives that you just don't know what to get. Boy, was that fun. I did happen to finish shopping for one of the kids and that's such an accomplishment in it's self. I did the "high-five" with the kids and they just walked away, mumbling something about not knowing me or something like that.
Then, I spent Sunday wrapping presents and seeing what I still needed to get. Of course, Emily who is always with me, seemed to accumulated the most presents so far. I figured that she'd be so excited when she saw them sitting under the tree. I ran and got her and brought her over to the tree and went, ta-da!!
She looked at the pile and said, "Cool."
Cool? That's all I get? I was like, don't you see all the presents? She was like, that's neat. Can I go play again?
I tell ya. Youth is wasted on the young...

Saturday, November 21, 2009

The secret is out-and a contest!

Do you remember my teaser post about reviewing something from csn.stores?

Did you take a guess?

Well, I'm ready to tell you what is was!

I got to review this:

Let me tell you, if you've never tried a food chopper, you've got try one. I've always wanted to get one, but it's been one of those things that you say that you're-going-to-buy-one-because-it-would-make-your-life-so-much-easier-but-you-don't.

I've been in heaven since I've been using this marvelous appliance.

What perfect timing for this puppy, with Thanksgiving coming. I have all sorts of ideas to use it for like, salsa for the appetizers and making a salad mix.

This chopper has a one-touch button and the blade cuts with ease and is super easy to clean.

It's compact size makes it great for storage and I don't know about you, but I don't have much room in my kitchen.

Now, here is the fun part:

One lucky winner gets one too!

That's right! csn stores want you to have one too!

It's really easy to enter, so you know you want to.

Just go visit one of their websites at:

Then, tell me what you would buy from them if they were running a great sale.

Want another entry?

Follow me-I like it when people follow me.

Want another chance?

Tweet about it, then come back and leave another comment.

Can't wait to get something from them?

Well, they are running a holiday sale on just about everything there!
Check out their counter stools too! I wish I had a breakfast nook to use stool for-hmm, the possibilties...

They also have free shipping on just about everything too!

Contest ends:

Dec 5th

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Happy Birthday Emily

Dear Emily,
Five years ago, today, I was given a wonderful gift-you.

I can't believe that you are five now-how time has flown by! You have grown so much and are more beautiful each day. I can remember back when you were a baby and we wondered if your hair was ever going to grow-now, I curse it every day, when we have a ton of tangles to deal with when you wake up in the morning!

You keep me on my toes and I'm always amazed at what comes out of your mouth. You are a very beautiful, head strong and bossy little girl that everyone loves. We get stopped all the time by strangers who tell us how pretty you are. You've heard it so much, that it doesn't even phase you (I feel so sorry for the boys when you get older.)
This year was another adventurous one with you being a finalist in Hallmark's Mother's Day Card Contest. Boy, if that didn't make your head swell. You were treated like a celebrity in our city. You were on tv, in the paper and on the radio. Of course, everyone thought you were so sweet.

We got second place, which wasn't bad and we had fun. Now, your card is going to be a birthday card too, which is really cool!

Now with you turning five, you get to go to school next fall. This is a task that you aren't sure about yet, nor are you sure about not calling for mommy in the middle of the night because you are scared of the dark.
So, once again, we got to throw a dozen parties since you are so special and you made me have to bake-something I really don't do well, but the cupcakes must not of been too bad, because everyone ate them.
I hope you have a great birthday and make sure you are nice to grandma, since it's her birthday too!

Monday, November 16, 2009

No respect

Jordon: "Mom! Where are my school books?!"
Me: "Did you put them in your room like I always tell you?"
Jordon: "No."
Me: "Then, I probably put them somewhere when I cleaned."
Jordon: "This is why I don't like you to touch my stuff!"
Me: Grrrrr....


Hubby: "Tess! Where's my ipod cord?"
Me: "Did you pick it up off of the couch cushion like I told you?"
Hubby: "No."
Me: "Then, I probably put it somewhere when I cleaned."
Hubby: "This is why I don't like you to touch my stuff!"
Me: Grrrr...


Jess: "Mom! Where's my jacket I left over here?"
Me: "Did you hang it up like I told you to?"
Jess: "No."
Me: "Then I probably put it somewhere when I cleaned."
Jess: "This is why I don't like you to touch my stuff!"
Me: Grrrr...


Emily: "Mom! Where's my new player I got from Grandma?"
Me: "Did you put it in your purse like I told you?"
Emily: "No."
Me: "Then I probably put it somewhere when I cleaned."
Emily: "This is why I don't like you to touch my stuff!"
Hubby: (Just laughing from the other room)
Me: "It's so nice that everyone is teaching the five year old such good habits."

Friday, November 13, 2009

Time for some birthday parties-again.

You are probably wondering what the heck is going on with me. I mean, I actually posted several days in a row.You may be wondering, Are you ok? What happened?

I'm actually fine, thank you. Well, other than not winning that damn photo book contest. (I will forgive you some day, PW) I found this new burst of energy and I went with it. I think I may even think of some new ideas to spruce up my little blog.

In the mean time, I have yet another task to accomplish-no, I'm not starting ANOTHER business or book (ok, that one's a lie) or trying to become the next President-nothing like that. It's that time of the year when Emily becomes a year older, which means that I have to plan three parties. Why? If you remember from last year, she shares the same birthday as my mom and well, because it's Emily.

Though her birthday isn't until November 17th, our first party will be tonight. This one is for the grandparents and a few aunts and uncles. We will then have the other two on her birthday, one for her friends and one for her and my mom.

She's been running around all week, excited about the party tonight and telling everyone that TODAY is going to be her birthday. I of course, have to correct her and tell her that next week is her birthday and have resorted to threaten to take her other two parties away since, well, TODAY is her birthday.

Yesterday, she asked if I would sing 'Happy Birthday' to her this morning. I told her I would sing 'Happy Friday the 13th' instead.

So, I've been baking cupcakes (not very well, if I may say) finding just the right Strawberry Shortcake decorations, and cleaning house. I didn't even ask for help from anyone else because that would be a total waste of my time and I'd probably drop dead from a heart attack if anyone actually did help.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Stuffed Turkey Dog

Do you remember these two gals?

They were supposed to leave the nest with their mama when she got her own place. We came so close. She had an apartment that she was going to rent that allowed dogs. Then, she didn't. Then she did. Then, she didn't. I was getting dizzy sending them out the door and bringing them back in.

Well, turns out that the one she ended up having to get doesn't even allow gold fish, let alone dogs-seriously. I would NOT nominate that landlord for pet lover of the year.

So, here we go again. The "kids" are back and apparently staying for awhile. It was either that, or her putting an ad in the paper and the rest of the family hating me forever.

Why are moms put in such positions?

I've decided that I'm ok with it on one condition; Bella gets a professional bath and we hang an air freshener around her neck. I did find out that Petco is having a special orange-cranberry spa with a free "fall" charm for their collar. Do I want my dog to smell like a Thanksgiving dish?

Hmm-this might work.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

I love getting things in the mail.

One of the perks of blogging is being able to review products that you might not be able to otherwise.
I was contacted by the company, and they asked if I would like to review one of their products. I said sure! This company sells a broad range of products from housewares to even counter stools!
What product do I get to review? I'm not going to tell you.
That's right. You have to keep checking back to find out what I picked to review.
Want to guess? Give it a try. Oh, and I have a special surprise too for one lucky reader, so you better come back and find out!

Monday, November 9, 2009

I love fall-really

I love taking pictures of fall...
The leaves are so beautiful when they change colors...

It makes me want Thanksgiving to come and it makes me want to bake cookies and cakes...

Now, if I could only hold that mood while I'm raking twenty thousand bags worth of them from my front yard...

Saturday, November 7, 2009

I could use another camera

I've been working hard on my book but decided to take a break to do something fun. I found out that Pioneer Woman is having a contest under her photography section. I always try to win those darn contests. Most are randomly picked and I must not have good luck, cause I never win.
This contest though, is a judging contest on the best photo book-I might have a chance! It's being sponsored by Shutterfly and if she likes your photobook, you win fun things. I entered it and even if I don't win, I think I like my book enough to order it anyway-but shhh, don't tell her that!
Here are some of my photo book pages.

The cover.

The title page.

I thought this was cute.

Had to end with this one.

You should go enter too.

Here is the link:

Try to win yourself a camera. Then, let me borrow it.

Now I must stop typing so I can cross my fingers and hope I win!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Lynda Carter, please help-bring lasso.

Hello. The owner of this blog has been so busy, they fell over dead.
The End.

Not really. I am alive, just neglecting my blog. I'm just in the works of my book and the website/blog to go with it. Somebody gave me a cute idea to go along with my book to advertise it. I think it will be fun to do, so I'm checking into it.

I finally got over to my food blog too and have a new review, please check it out-thank you for making my day. Things are going great for that blog and I really don't want to neglect this one in the process because my family will never forgive me and Christmas is coming and I need a new vacuum cleaner-and a tea kettle.

Also, my oldest is going through a crisis that I have to deal with that takes up alot of my time, though Jess wouldn't be Jess if she wasn't turning our lives upside down. THAT one I'll have to save for a post all on it's own.

So, it would be nice if everything settled down by Thanksgiving, since I get to have it at my house or we just might be having turkey lunch meat sandwiches and cranberry flavored Sprite-do you think they'd notice?