Monday, March 30, 2009
Show Me the Brie
Saturday, March 28, 2009
Win Tickets to Mingle with the Stars at the Hard Rock in San Diego
The party is April 3 & 4 so if are planning on visiting San Diego, live there already, or can get there for this awesome event, register for your chance to mingle with celebrities at The Hard Rock Hotel and ditch the San Diego airport hotel reservations.
Friday, March 27, 2009
Don't Scramble at Dinner Time
All the meals take 30 minutes or less and the site offers a searchable database to make alternate choices if one does not meet your family's tastes. Aviva only offers tried and loved recipes that have been tested on her own family as well others to ensure satisfaction.
If you are a busy parent, or just one who is looking to increase your family's repertoire of dinner entrees and sides, I urge you to check out The Six O'Clock Scramble. Through the end of March you can get $5 off a 6 month subscription or $10 of a year. Use the code TwitterMoms at checkout for this great savings.
Thursday, March 26, 2009
I have two blogs with Today.com that will no longer be able to participate with Entrecard. I'll still drop with my other two but would appreciate an occasional visit to Letters and More Fun Than Allowed...with Kids from all my regular droppers...thanks.
I need to convince Hubster to enter a contest for Maxim Magazine (Yes, I read his copy). They are having a contest to win a 55" Vizio Flat screen and I want it. We would have to get a flat panel mount because it would never fit in the entertainment center we currently have, but we really need to do away with the current one anyway because it is just too large for the room (but the TV wouldn't be, seriously). Anyway, I thought if I could get enough comments here encouraging him to come up with a song for me to video that he would enter. Anyone?
I'm working out a schedule to be more productive here as well as to attend to the housework I've been neglecting (Hubster will be happy to read that). I'm looking to take 3 days off a week, unless something pressing comes up. I haven't quite worked it all out yet. How do you maintain balance between your real life and your virtual one?
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
Barefoot Bubbly ~ A Review
Sunday, March 22, 2009
I'm late, I'm late....
I'm Shelly (or Rachele). I'm a wife. I'm a mother. I'm a loyal friend. I'm a daughter and a Sister. I create strong friendships that defy time and distance as well as fleeting friendships that create wonderful memories. I'm a blogger (or am aspiring to be) and I love to try new things and meet new people. I've never been described as shy. I'm witty, sarcastic, and a wine drinking fool.
Blogging has been an outlet for me to voice my opinions and share fun stories and to have something to do while avoiding the housework.
I love a good party and this one rocks. There are so many people in attendance that I hope I have the time to meet at least half. If I don't meet you this week, I'll sneak on by after the party is over and maybe we can have a glass of wine and chat.
Thanks for coming by...don't be a stranger.
Saturday, March 21, 2009
Thursday, March 19, 2009
I'm a little disappointed with Americas choice to send Alexis home on American Idol. I really thought she was the strongest girl and would have loved to see Megan or Scott go home. I have my opinions but do not vote, so I can only expect so much. On that note. The judges now have the opportunity to SAVE one contestant. They make it sound like it will totally depend on one performance. If they hated the song choice from the night before, how confident can a performer be singing the same song that put them on the chopping block to begin with. Is this "save" going to be used on someone who picked the right song and forgets the words? I'll be interested to see if it gets used.
I made a video of my new wine opener in use but am having difficulties getting it to load. When you see it you'll be running to get one for yourself, I'm sure!
Got another cool "toy". If you look over in the sidebar I've added Natalie MacLean's Food/Wine Pairing widget. You can type in a food or a wine and find what would go best with it. Try it out! It offers thousands of pairings and you may find some surprises.
I Like to Pretend
I tried scrapping. I have 3 pages in my son's "album". It goes up to 6 weeks, he's almost 6. I just look at the pages and wish I had more creativity, and now there are a ton of scrap booking blogs that point out how untalented I am.
When I got married I did my own Thank You notes. Those turned out okay. It was almost 10 years ago and I don't have a copy so I like to believe they looked really nice. I also did my son's birth announcements with photo and catchy little phrase (while I still thought I could pull of the scrap booking thing). I don't remember ever sending them out though. Hopefully no on has one of those laying around. I am of the belief that having a son or daughter is the most wonderful time in one's life and should be announced properly. I also think that those of us less talented in this area should use a company like Doodlebugs Designs to get that message out. Who needs to be worried about baby announcements when all we really want to do is stare at our new bundle of joy?
I enjoy doing chocolate suckers and make them for my son's class and the neighbor kids at Halloween. It's easy to impress 5 year olds...and they're chocolate, so you can't go wrong. I also posted them on etsy and recently made my first sale. The order was rated before it was received so hopefully the purchaser was happy with the finished product. I may never know, but no refund has been requested.
Oh, and I also do my kids birthday cakes. Again, it's something I enjoy doing for them. I'm not trying to sell any, but the kids think they are great and that's all that matters...to me.
Are you crafty? Or a pretender, like me?
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
Monday, March 16, 2009
Hob Nob Shiraz ~ A Wine Review
Okay, first of all I love the enthusiasm of my co-Hort in this little experiment. Randy of The Wine Whore has been gracious enough to join me in a wine tasting and review for your enjoyment. We weren't supposed to post until tomorrow but he "was excited" and posted early. That's cool...I'm ready.
Now for my review of Hob Nob Shiraz.
I opened it. I poured it. I swirled it (which I never do). I sipped it. First reaction is a very bold dark flavor. Now it’s breathing a little and I’ll try some more in about 30 minutes. So far…I like it.
(30 minutes later)
It’s got a spicy oak flavor. I had it alone…very enjoyable.
I had it with spaghetti and it seemed to overpower the food.
I had it with a dark chocolate Oreo and felt like I’d died and gone to heaven.
This wine boasts a cherry aroma and a hint of vanilla ...I didn't get the vanilla.
Overall I’d give it a 7.
It’s a little strong for my every day consumption.
At $11.00, Hubster would kill me if this was a regular buy (yes, I belong to the under $5 club)but still very well priced for what this wine has to offer.
I think this would go nicely with brie and some stoned wheat crackers and would be divine with a garlic encrusted NY Strip.
Definitely something I would buy again when entertaining guests.
Now if you want a more sophisticated review, Hob Nob over to The Wine Whore and see what he has to say. I'm on my way now.
To Randy: The next pick is on you. Ignore the $5 club comment, I'll tell Hubster "It's for work"!
Bean Boozled, Shark Boy goes to the dentist, and my Evening Wine Selection
Friday, March 13, 2009
When will it End?
I'm over this weather, 80 on Wednesday, 40 and drizzly rain today and throughout the weekend. It's no wonder everyone is sick. I'm just over someone being sick in this house for what seems like 4 months now. Please make it go away!
In other news, I've got a couple reviews coming up that I'm excited about and a new wine tasting comparison with another wine enthusiast that is sure to knock your socks off, so be on the lookout for those.
Wednesday, March 11, 2009
Teaching our Children about Disabilities
Now in Kindergarten, he has 2 friends in his class (part time) that are deaf. He seems excited to be learning their language and often comes home to show me the new signs he has learned. He wanted to know why they can't hear. I explained that it could be for a variety of reasons. Some children are just born without the ability to hear and others may have had an illness causing the loss of their hearing. In order to get a better idea of his relationship with these two boys I asked if they played in his group at recess. He replied "no." I was concerned and asked "why not?" He said "I would like to play with them but they do not go to recess at the same time as us."
I love that these boys are a part of his class and he does not see them as any different than himself. He understands that they can not hear and use alternate methods of communication but other than that, they are just little boys who should be on the playground with him.
CVS Caremark - All Kids Can is a $25 million trust that is making life easier for children with disabilities in our local communities. They are committed to supporting non-profits that provide innovative programs for Children with disabilities. They also are increasing awareness with local schools about the inclusion of these students and push for barrier- free playgrounds so all the children can play in a safe, fun environment.
All children should be able to play and learn together. Thank You CVS Caremark - All Children Can for recognizing this issue and taking steps to remove the boundaries that exist so that all our children can benefit from these wonderful programs.
Top 13 Recap
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
Someone Hacked my E-mail
The e-mail was poorly written and advertising a great site "I" had found offering great savings on electronics. I immediately deleted the e-mails. One of my friends called to find out why I had sent that to her. I explained that I had been hacked but had no idea how to research and fix the problem.
Saturday, March 7, 2009
My Darling Boy
We'll be keeping a close eye on him.
In other news, I just found out there's a watch brand called Jaeger Master. In my opinion this sounds way to much like Jager Meister and when I over heard (part of) 2 guys conversation the other night at the bar, I said "I"ll take one too." Now I know why everyone looked at me like I was crazy...apparently, I am.
Friday, March 6, 2009
Enquiring Minds Want to Know
I really have no interest in having everything spotless.
I can not tell you the last time I dusted our bedroom.
Why am I this way while others are the complete opposite and insist it is what makes a good Mother, woman, human being?
This is what I have been pondering today. Why today? No clue other than it gave me something to do while I wasn't cleaning my house.
I used to believe (until my pondering of today) that the reason I did not find joy in cleaning was due to an early child hood ritual of Saturday morning 9am wake ups by my parents insisting that my brothers and I clean (dust ,vacuum, put everything away) our bedrooms and playroom (full basement) as well as scrub every surface of the bathroom the 3 of us shared. We did this every Saturday for as long as I can remember. Ironically, the rest of the house was cleaned every Wednesday by a housekeeper.
Today I thought beyond that time to when, at 15, I moved in with my Dad and lived in new surroundings and had no cleaning schedule. There was dust, clutter, disorganization, and yet the next 3 years were the best of my young life. I had friends over all the time. While rarely allowed to have friends over to the house we kept so clean (to impress who?) I was now in a place less sanitary and way more open and accepting of anyone who wanted to just drop by.
I also realized that no one cares. Sure there are those who would rather be in a spotless home and look down their noses (even if subtly) as those with lesser standards, but kids aren't usually in that group. I had a friend who's Father was always renovating without completing previous projects. For months when I went to her house (every day) we would climb a ladder to get upstairs and walk across planks to get to her bedroom because her dad had decided to move the staircase. I didn't care. It was a spot all the kids liked to hang out at. Her parents were not uptight, invited everyone in and treated them like family. When I did end up at friends houses' that were spotless i just thought "Wow". Not "wow, I wish I lived like this", just "wow". It didn't matter.
Both My MIL and my Step Mom spend hours cleaning. Part of it is a pride and appearance thing, part of it, I believe, is that they both really enjoy cleaning. That's great for them, but they are also 2 people who think every one's house should be like that. I'm sure they love coming to my house (serious sarcasm).
When I visit my parents (as I just did) I don't revel in the cleanliness of my surroundings, I'm more impressed with the super cool theater room they have. Fully equipped with surround sound, home theatre seating , a 54 in Wide screen, and they even put floor lighting on the steps to the 2 rows of seats. I'm also impressed by the wine cellar they have created and fully stocked.
I want to feel relaxed when visiting people and something about a spotless house just puts me on edge knowing that I will inevitably spill something.
Moral of the story: If you're a super clean freak, just politely decline any invite I send you.
Dogs for the Cause
I've mentioned Paws in previous posts but after my visit home and seeing first hand what a help My Step-Mom's dog Colonel is to her, I felt an urgent need to revisit this very worth while foundation.
Paws is celebrating 30 years of training and placing assist dogs with individuals of varying disabilities and each dog is trained specifically for their owners own needs. I had been told how helpful Colonel is, but it took seeing him in action to fully realize what a magnificent job Paws has done in their training of this dog.
My Step Mom has Multiple Sclerosis, and has pretty much lost all feeling in her legs, but she refuses to give in and is determined to walk for as long as she is able. Due to the lack of feeling and her unwavering stubbornness, she frequently loses her balance and falls. Colonel places himself staunchly in front of her and allows her to use him as a brace to lift her off the floor. I personally witnessed this on 2 occasions and it was amazing.
Colonel is also trained to retrieve fallen or out of reach objects, which proved to be a challenge...for me. Anything at eye level or below is to be picked up and taken to his owner. Upon our arrival, I set my purse on the floor and went to retrieve the rest of our luggage from the car. I came back into the house only to realize that my purse was gone. Colonel had dutifully picked it up and had taken it to "mommy". This went on all weekend. While changing Puddin Pop, I would have to wedge her PJ's between my legs so they would not instantaneously be picked up and taken to grammy. I finally caught on. While cooking, if a utensil is dropped, Colonel is right there to pick it up. He also retrieves a ringing (or not) phone, opens and holds doors and on top of all that, is one of the sweetest, most loving dogs I have ever met. I should have pictures, but neglected to take my camera. I will post picks as soon as I receive the ones others took during our visit.
Thank You Paws for a Wonderful Assist Dog and allowing My Step-Mom her independence.
Thank You Colonel for being a loving and very helpful addition to the family.
Thursday, March 5, 2009
The Gift that Became an Addiction
Every Wine enthusiast should have one of these. I've tried all the fancy schmancy wine openers and always go back to a traditional, no frills cork screw...Never Again. This bad boy goes right over the top, you hold the bottle and push a button, in 5 seconds the cork is removed and you push another button to release it from the opener. It's unique, very functional, and sits in it's own rechargeable base. Definitely a must have for the wine lover in your life, don't believe me? Get one and I bet you'll be impressed.
Tuesday, March 3, 2009
Winter Wonderland with No Snow Toys
So we get home and the yard is covered in about 4 inches of snow and we are unprepared. We have no snow toys, it hasn't snowed since Boog was born (2003). The kids were using pool supplies as their snow toys. The skimmer made a great launcher and it was easy to scoop up the snow and wing it across the yard and the cleaning brush was good for sweeping snow off the toys that were left outside.
I even had a friend bring her sled to Michigan (from Chicago) because I was sure I would be able to pull PP around in it...guess I should have brought it home.
On another note, the visit was great, the drinks and friends were many, and I look forward to our next girls weekend next year.