Mome reads Mommy, My daughter's way to spell it when she was younger... It stuck. My son calls me Mome... just like it looks. I now sign all my notes to them "Love, Mome". It's our inside secret and makes them smile. I always want them to smile.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

It's time to review the Boys

The gentlemen adorned the stage last night in attempt to stay another week. With the results just hours away, here's my take on the Boys of American Idol...

Todrick Hall~ Very comfortable on stage. I enjoyed the performance but didn't feel his vocals were contest worthy. Not at least in this performance.

Aaron Kelly~He did well. I just don't see him standing out. I think he'll quickly get lost in the mix.

Jermaine Sellers~ This poor guy was so nervous. The result was a lot of bad notes.

Tim Urban~ Enough with the smoldering looks into the camera. Those high notes were hard to listen too. He's cute, though, and I think he'll make it through to next week.

Joe Munoz~ Strong performance although the words sounded muffled in the beginning.

Tyler Grady~ I don't like looking at him. Never got into Jim Morrison, don't want to now.

Lee Dewyze~ This was my surprise of the evening. I don't recall seeing much of him in previous episodes. I really enjoyed the sound of his voice and predict he'll make top 6 for the guys.

John Park~Wow. this was another hard to watch performance. The vocals improved at the midway point but it was already too late. Tell the producers to stop making the guys "make love" to the cameras. It's distracting, fake and annoying.

Michael Lynche~I really like him and his story but why was he putting his mouth all over the mic? That was bothersome. I was also surprised at his reactions to the judges criticisms. Looked like he was going to go postal.

Alex Lambert~Nothing about this kid stands out to me. He reminds me more of aPlano dentist than an American Idol. Maybe it's because he reminds me of Herbie?

Casey James~ I hope that's the end of the Casey/Kara references. It's just gotten to be too much. It could also be bad for both of them. I'm probably the only one who doesn't like his hair. He's a good singer, though, and will definitely make it to the top 12.

Andrew Garcia~ My favorite guy after Hollywood week. I did not care for or know the song but still think he'll be in the top 12. I also hope he is more creative in his song choice next week.

Really Octomom?

If you missed The View yesterday you may be better off. It was like watching a train wreck over and over again. "Hold on. I'll get to your question in a minute." Nadya Suleman was unfocused, confused, giddy and energetic all while claiming to be a "shy, quiet person". My a$$. She is on some sort of upper, be it an anti-depressant or some diet pill. I'm sure of it. I think she should have been hooked up to a pulse oximeter . Then we could get some answers....or more questions.

If you missed the train wreck you can watch it here.

Myself and some of the other Brand Ambassadors were tweeting during the show and no one had any sympathy for this woman. We were all dumbfounded and a few even shut off the TV. I think we need to let this woman go back to taking care of these babies she willingly brought into this world. We must stop giving her media attention and insist she goes home to her kids. The only way for her to get her reality is to live her reality and I don't believe she's come even close to achieving that.

I'm pretty sure with 14 kids I would not have time to worry about my own self image, nor would it be a priority. I would be ragged, tired, and also only get 2 hours of sleep a night. I would not have time to indulge in writing a book, going to the gym, or shopping for stylish clothes. Let's show her how her life is really going to play out by not paying attention. Then, for kicks and giggles, let's pop in when the octuplets turn 5. Especially if they've inherited their mom's "natural energy."

As a Brand Ambassador for the View (through Mom Central) I've been promised swag but the opinions are all mine.

Cox Communications~ No You Didn't

While creating a zoo on Facebook with my three year old (she loved picking out all the animals) We had Sponge Bob on in the background. No one was really paying attention and in the future I will just turn the TV off when we aren't watching it. Here's why.

Puddin Pop and I are sitting in a chair, She is on my lap and the laptop is in front of us on the ottoman (on a tray 'cuz it gets so darn hot). All the sudden I hear moaning. Yes. That kind of moaning. I look up and am frozen with confusion. On the TV is full blown PORN (as opposed to the soft stuff). I look around see where the remote is. It's sitting on another ottoman. The dog is no where around (she sometimes steps on the remote causing the channel to change). I finally get my bearings and get up as fast as I can without throwing PP to the floor. I grab the remote and turn the TV off. I then went and added a half shot of raspberry liqueur to the hot chocolate I was drinking. I was that rattled.

Puddin Pop says "Mommy. What was that lady doing?" (her mouth was full. you get the idea) "I don't know baby." Wanting to cry that my 3 year old was exposed to this and wondering what kind of trauma or nightmares she is going to have. "It was icky." "Yes, baby, it was."

I call Hubster and ask him if he feels like chewing someone out. He says "Who?" I explain what happened and he immediately calls the cable company and then conferences me in. They give us the whole "Someone must of ordered it. It wouldn't just change channels on it's own." CRAP.

Let me just say that we don't use PPV. I honestly didn't know we had that option. We use On Demand to watch movies. What they are suggesting is that someone either used the guide or the channel buttons and went to the Playboy channel. Then they would have had to scroll to future programming (we're having them research to tell us on what day this "future" programming was ordered) then hit select and select again to purchase. Not very likely. Sure, Hubster could have done it, but it's unlikely he bought a program that would air while he was at work. It's also unlike that he wants to move out, just saying. Again. We don't use PPV. I have no idea if future purchased programs cause the channel to automatically change to the purchased movie. Anyone?

Bottom Line: I am mortified, disturbed and totally pissed off at my cable company. Looking into other options because I feel this is 100% completely unacceptable!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

American Idol Recap~ It was Inevitable


Yep. The ladies just performed and there is nothing I like more than wine and Idol. I've been watching wince the auditions, so my judgement may be clouded, but here is what I've got.


Ladies Night~ 12 ladies perform. It's America's job to dwindle them down to 6. My recap...


Paige ~ I'm not into her ...yet. Think going first has its demerits. Was she really sewn into her outfit? That would suck and I couldn't sing if I had to pee for 5 hours. Did a good job for first up. She'll make it through...to next week.
Ashley~ Not sure of her song choice. Not the right one for her. There is something about her I like though. Seemed a little nervous but very adorable. We'll see her next week.
Janelle~Wine Rep? I think she may be my new BFF. Not my favorite performance by her. Very karaoke-ish. But I think she has more to show and I look forward to it.
Lilly~ I didn't even recognize the song but I think she's brilliant and will be around for a while.
Katelyn~ I really like her, but what's with the hair and make-up. Seriously, fire those people because it just distracted me from the performance. Made it seem Cabaret-ish. Would have been better without all the visual distractions.
Haeley~ So cute. I love that she got her nosed pierced to commemorate but it I feel she fell short in the vocals. Liked her better with the Country songs. Something nasal in her voice. Cute but irritating. She may be going home.
Lacey~ So cute and spunky. I did not like her performance but hope she gets another chance.
Michelle~ Way too cute. Real. Hope she does well. Seems very comfortable on stage but maybe could have picked a better song for her voice.
Didi~ Her voice is one of a kind and not annoying. I'd like to see her stick around for awhile. She needs to figure out who she is.
Siobhan~ Interesting character. I like her voice but another one who hasn't yet figured out who she is. Strong competition. Did she get her teeth fixed?
Crystal~ Seriously. Best female in the group. Very authentic. I hope everyone votes on talent. She may have not felt she was right for this competition but I'm sure Daughtry felt the same. I'd like to see her in the final!
Katie~ Cute girl. Kind of felt like it was Britney's coming of age video. Love her back story and think she has a voice but is too commercial at this point.
Other notes...
Surprisingly and sad, Ellen seemed very uncomfortable and seemed to copy what others said. I think she'll warm up.
Surprisingly~ I think Kara is my favorite judge this season. Very real. Not obnoxious. This season may prove to be the best.
We're gonna miss you Simon. But we'll be A-OK without you.

Vacation, A foot in the mouth, Twitter. How's that for random?

randomtuesday


We're finally taking a family vacation. By the time we go Boog will be 7. It'll be his first family Vacation that isn't a trip to see my parents or brother. We had tossed around the idea of Florida or a Branson vacation, but thanks to friends who have planned a vacation for us we're going to be spending a week in Nags Head. I'm super excited but haven't told the kids yet. It's not until August and I really can't listen to "Can we go now?" for the next 8 months. My kids love the beach. There will be other kids to play with and teenage girls to babysit. Good times.

I came into the living room last night and found Pudding Pop with her foot in her mouth. Literally. Not just a toe. All five of them. I did what any concerned mother would do, I went and got my camera. She is mortified (at 3) that I may post these and she begged me not to. Tomorrow is Wordless Wednesday. I'm still on the fence about what to do.

Why do people leave their spouses for someone else? We had this talk at our Girls Night In. Seriously. I'm a smart person. I don't make decisions lightly. Especially when committing the rest of my life to someone. If I decided not to be with my husband after all the work I did to hand select him, I'm pretty sure it wouldn't be for another man. I'm pretty sure they'd all suck. Just saying.

Why am I invisible on Twitter? Sometimes people respond to me, when I reply to them first, but other than that I'm a ghost. I recently became a Brand Ambassador for The View and while we (or everyone else since no one could see me) were tweeting during the show yesterday someone was like, "Is it just @blah, @yadda, @dabba...etc, here?" and I was like "no. I'm here too." Nothing. Anyone wanna explain why this is? It's not just in that search either. Whenever I'm topic talking I'm invisible. I need some answers.

Yesterday was National Margarita Day. Had I found out before 4 0'clock I'd of been somewhere celebrating. At least I still have Cinco de Mayo.

That's my random. Random your blog and then head to The Un Mom and link up.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Reunited

I'm still in the process of viewing older posts and thought this one deserved another run. Since this posting, Colonel and Dash have gotten together and their "parents" have met. I feel happy that I helped in getting them together. I'm off to check out some tazorac reviews in the hope that I can find something that finally works. Any suggestions?






How cool is this?


I posted a while back about my Step Mom's dog Colonel. He is an assist dog that was bred and trained by Paws with a Cause to help her in her day to day life with Multiple Sclerosis. I had the opportunity to meet Colonel on my last visit home and had posted about how amazing this dog is and how much he helps WSM (wicked step mother, her name of choice). Through the power of the Internet, WSM now has these pictures and more of her baby colonel...when he was a baby.
In the first picture Colonel is the pup in the red collar. The second is of his mother, Dash, and his entire litter. Here's how I came to receive these:

WSM wrote a letter to all her contributors that helped her get Colonel and sent a copy to Paws. They asked if they could publish it in their quarterly News Letter and she said yes. A couple living not far from them who also participates in the Paws program saw the letter and decided to do an Internet search to see if they could get more info about the new owners of their dog's pup...and found the post I had done here. They e-mailed me with the pics above and explained that their dog, Dash, was originally being trained as an assist dog but they (the trainers at Paws) determined that she had a strong heart and good hips so they pulled her from the assist program and she joined Paws' breeding program. She is bred each year and the top pups are returned to Paws to be trained as assist dogs. Colonel was Dash's first pup put back into the program.


I was glad to be involved in getting WSM baby pictures of Colonel. She is now contacting Dash's owners to see if they can all get together.

Isn't that fun?

Helping Family

Why is everyone I know falling apart? Hubster has his chronic back problems, another friend is suffering from severe joint pain, and now my baby brother has to have neck surgery to repair a couple of herniated discs. They haven't yet scheduled the surgery but are in the process. They'd like to get it done within the next 30 days since he is currently losing feeling in his arms and fingers. I know he's anxious and I've offered to go down and stay with him for a couple days right after the surgery. When I told Hubster of my plans he said "We can talk about it." I'm sure he didn't mean for it to sound like it did. I'm not asking for permission. My brother needs me and I'll be there for him. I'll just have to make arrangements for the kids while I'm gone. I guess that's what he meant. We'll talk about the arrangements. Right?

Stop Stealing Hemorrhoid Cream

I saw a report recently that stated the number one product most commonly stolen from stores is hemorrhoid cream. I imagine it's not a money issue but more likely and embarrassment issue. Now what if I told you that this hemorrhoid treatment could be used for so many different things?

Some people use the cream on cellulite and other flabby areas as the cream is known to tighten those problem areas.

Some women use it under their eyes to diminish puffyness.

It can be used to treat cold sores as long as it isn't in an area that your tongue won't come in contact with.

It can be used to treat acne and the swollen red bumps that it causes.

It can be used to treat frown lines on your forehead.

With all these uses there is no reason to be embarrassed to purchase hemorrhoid cream. Stop Stealing It!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Look what Jimmy's doing now

I mentioned here that I have a new 4 week gig for The View. Now I have to watch. It's rough sometimes all the demands that I put on myself, lol.

So. I'm watching The View last week and they are discussing that Jimmy Johnson is the new spokesperson for extenze. (So is it him that keeps sending me all those emails?) They were talking about how embarrassing it would be to promote such a product (which, according to these funny ladies is a product for hair) and what would make a celebrity choose to do it. I was reading here that Jimmy uses the product and so I guess he thought he may as well get it for free. Shouldn't some things stay private?

Sorting Email

I am super diligent when sorting my emails. If I don't want to keep receiving it I don't just delete it, I mark it as junk or as a phishing scam. I also regularly go through my junk mail and delete it. It seems, however, that I am getting more and more junk. Is it just me? With anything from the best diet pills on the market to male enhancement products to work from home opportunities (scams). It seems to be the new wave in money making. Sending out crap e-mails in the hopes that someone will buy. Is there a way to get off a mailing list? Without actually opening the mail? It's not very often that something goes into my junk mail that shouldn't. I guess I could just ignore it all together, but the thought of looking through 600+ emails to find one that may have gotten sent there seems much harder that clearing it every time I go into my mail.

What techniques do you use?

Repost~ The Hunger Site

I've been spending the weekend looking back at early posts from when I first started blogging. It's been enjoyable to see how I started and how much more focused I've become. By branching out to 3 different blogs I've been able to post about different things and give a little more clarity to each. Some topics, like cholesterol treatment , would fit in any and other topics, like wine reviews, would only fit on Wine at Five? Because Someone Cares is about interesting things I find, charities and giving back, and general topics.

Here's a post from August 2008. I love spotlighting easy ways to give back and this one deserves to be revisited.



Here's a no brainer. An easy way to help children in need. The Hunger Site, developed in 1999, dedicates itself to eliminating world hunger.





Hunger: Do You Know The Facts?

It is estimated that one billion people in the world suffer from hunger and malnutrition. That's roughly 100 times as many as those who actually die from these causes each year.

About 24,000 people die every day from hunger or hunger-related causes. This is down from 35,000 ten years ago, and 41,000 twenty years ago. Three-fourths of the deaths are children under the age of five.

Famine and wars cause about 10% of hunger deaths, although these tend to be the ones you hear about most often. The majority of hunger deaths are caused by chronic malnutrition. Families facing extreme poverty are simply unable to get enough food to eat.

The Hunger Site began on June 1, 1999. In 1999, a year marked by good economic news, 31 million Americans were food insecure, meaning they were either hungry or unsure of where their next meal would come from. Of these Americans, 12 million were children.





By going to their site, you can click the "Click here to Give" button and every click generates money from sponsors which in turn is 100% donated to Mercy Corps and Americas Second Harvest. It's easy, and you get to feel really good about yourself for helping others.

What are you waiting for? Go to the site NOW!

Girls Night In~ Kiss from a Rose

Another Girls Night In has come and gone. I'm getting sloppy. We're having so much fun I keep forgetting to take pictures of the food. It was another fondue night. Steak and Shrimp. I will never get sick of that. We also had some brown rice and a salad comprised of romaine, mixed greens, roasted pecans, cranberries and brie tossed in a balsamic vinaigrette that was to die for. I think I had 5 servings of that. Thanks Kathy!

The star of the night was the beverage.
Kiss from a Rose
1/2 oz. Raspberry Liqueur
1/2 oz. Creme de Cassis
4 oz. Rose Cuvee
Garnish with fresh berries


We modified the recipe slightly. we used 1/2 oz. of each liquor and then filled the wine glasses with champagne. We also left out the fruit.



This is the first beverage (with the exception of Margaritas) that everyone loved. We're a Red wine drinker, a Pink Wine drinker, a Whiskey and a Rum drinker collectively but all really enjoyed this drink. It was light and fruity but not so much so that it clashed with the food. It was a perfect celebratory beverage and we've all decided to have it again.

As usual, we laughed and caught up on everything going on in our lives. We talked diets and fitness (as we drank and filled our bellies). We probably should have talked about the best hgh supplements. Hot topics of the evening were American Idol and the Olympics.

It was a fun and crazy evening and I look forward to next months even though I don't remember which day we picked to have it. Oops.

*Thanks goes out to the nice folks at Barefoot who graciously supplied the Rose Cuvee and the recipe. They truly made the night special with a drink we all loved.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Highlight Saturday~ Barefoot Bubbly Extra Dry

Since I work most Saturdays and don't really get the chance to post or blog hop. I'm starting a new tradition of highlighting older posts (re-posting them) in case you weren't here the first time around. I swear it will be less painful than reading cla reviews and you might even enjoy some of the wines and foods I've discovered.

In honor of Barefoot, who is sponsoring our Girls Night In tonight. I thought I would post a review I did (with another blogger) for their Extra Dry Champagne. The champagne for the review was purchased by me.






I'm not sure where to begin. The Wine Whore and I had so much fun last time with our Hob Nob review that we decided to treat you with another edition of a He said, She said review. This time I let Randy pick the variety and he decided on Barefoot Bubbly Extra Dry Champagne. I usually only drink champagne on New Years and other very special occasions, so there is not much about the production I can share with you. I do love everything else Barefoot produces that I've tried though, so I thought I would give it a whirl.

I usually don't drink the extra dry or even dry versions of champagnes because Hubster doesn't care for them and he is usually my partner in crime when there is a toast to be made. That will no longer be the case. I love this champagne and fully understand why it got 90 points in the 2007 California State Fair wine competition.


I started with a glass as I prepared dinner and could definitely taste the apple flavor it boasts. It was very smooth and refreshing and left me wanting more. I paired it with Scallops and a rice-spinach-onion-mushroom medley and it complimented my choice exquisitely. I really think I need to drink champagne more often. I had a key lime bar for dessert with another glass of the Bubbly and thoroughly enjoyed the combination. While some of the champagne's flavoring was masked with different foods it remained very smooth and delightful to drink. A nice diversion from the wines I usually consume.


Overall I would have to give Barefoot Bubbly an 8.5. It might be higher but I'm not a true connoisseur of champagne, yet, and need to leave room for other great selections. Truly enjoyable and I will definitely buy it again.


If you want a real version of a review, with big words and winery terms, or just want another perspective, head on over to Randy's place and check out what he has to say.


If you have a wine you would like reviewed...let us know.


I'll leave you with a picture of my dinner








Saturday Highlights 1 ~ Bread Boogers

Welcome to Saturday! I must head off to work. I figure I have a short window of time that I can share funny stories about the kids. Soon they will be old enough to maneuver the internet and actually take offense to me telling the world all the cute stories of their youth. It's not like I can talk about what zit cream they're using or which kid broke their heart without them taking offense. I figure I have 5-6 years before the oldest catches on. This is a story re-posted from another blog I used to write. It's one of those stories Puddin Pop would be mortified to know I shared...if she was old enough to understand. It's important to be able to laugh at ourselves and hopefully she will think this story is funny...someday.




Darling Puddin’ Pop,

Up until a couple months ago, you would not even eat bread. Not toast, not a sandwich, a roll or anything. Then we took you and Boogie to feed the ducks and you decided if it was good enough for them, you would try it. The ducks didn’t get much bread from you on your first duck feed outing, but you ate 2.5 hamburger buns.

Now you have a bread fetish. Every night, just before bed time, you want a piece of bread. Nothing on it. Just a plain piece of bread. This hasn’t really been an issue, until this last week.

The boys are already in bed or upstairs trying to go to sleep. I’m dropping EC’s or chatting with my Mommy’s group, and you are watching “Wonder Pets”, enjoying your bread. Then you ask for help.

me: “Help with what sweetie?”

you: “The Bread.”

me: “What’s wrong with the bread?”

you: “It’s stuck.”

me: “It’s stuck? You mean it’s stuck to the plate?”

you: (with your finger wedged up your nose) “No, it’s stuck here.”

Yes, my precious Angel. On two occasions this week you have stuffed bread up your nose. And I’m talking STUFFED!

I pinch your opposite nostril and tell you to “blow”, after three or four tries a large, slimy bread booger comes flying out and lands across the room. Mommy says “Please don’t do that anymore, it’s dangerous and icky.” You smile and say “There’s more.”

We repeat the step above and launch the second bread booger that was so far up I couldn’t even see it

Two days later you apparently needed to check out the size of the other nostril, because you stuffed IT!

I love you. Please stop stuffing bread up your nose, it grosses mommy out!

Friday, February 19, 2010

The easiest way for me to lose weight

I've been busting my butt since the beginning of the year trying to lose this extra 20 I'm carrying around. I fully understand that muscle weighs more than fat so initially as I'm starting to tone up I may not see the actual weight loss even if I can feel the difference in the way my clothes fee. I get it. But 5 pounds in 6 weeks just doesn't seem worth it.

I'm actually enjoying my workouts on most days. It gives me time to focus on me and that feels good. But some days I would just like to eat whatever I want, skip the work out and know that the scale wasn't going to go up 3 pounds the following day.

I guess if it were baby pounds I was trying to get rid of it may motivate me more. I actually found pregnancy, or rather delivery, to be the easiest quick weight loss plan I've ever achieved. In both my pregnancies I gained little weight (12 and 10 pounds) and found myself 25 pounds lighter just a week after delivery. That means I lost the baby weight and then some. So my question is....

Anyone want a 42 year old to carry a baby for them? I'm sort of kidding.

I'm Worthy of The Bogart Award

Look at me! I just got another award. One can never have too many of these. I like awards. Aren't we (some of us) here for recognition? I love when someone isn't afraid to stand up and give me some props. Makes me warm and fuzzy. I actually received this award last week but felt I needed to use my special face creams, and lose that 5 pounds before I was ready to stand up in front of the world and accept this prestigious award.


Thanks Nicole

Young Mama Blog
I received this award from Nicole @ The Young Mama Blog. She really is a young mama too. One of the rules of this award is to say where you would like to be in 10 years. She discusses her goals for when she turns 32. Sheesh, that was 10 years ago. I'm sure she'll do very well, and enjoy reading how the young mom's deal with their children in contrast to how us "older moms" do it. I don't know why I always think there is going to be such a big difference, there seldom is.
So. Here are the official rules:

- link back to the blogger who sent me this award
- post where I would like to be in 10 years
- pass it on to 10 awesome bloggers


In 10 years I hope to still have my hair and frankly will feel blessed to still be sane. You see. In 10 years I will be 52. Not a seriously "old" age, but I will also have a 16 and a 13 year old. That's the scary part. No matter how I envision my children growing up, I always seem to skip right over the teenage years. Maybe it's too much to imagine, maybe I'm subconsciously not looking forward to it. Maybe I know the crap I got away with as a teen and can only imagine how much worse my kids will be. I don't know. I see them now at 6 and 3 and the future (in my mind) is them as adults with families of their own. All the middle is missing from my dreams. Maybe not having any expectations for these middle years will work in my favor.

Passing it on...
Sorry. Can't pick just 10. If you'd like this award and are here to visit, then you deserve to take it and pass it along.

Thank you again Nicole. I'll look forward to checking in 10 years from now.

When is it too much Testing?

I knew when I became pregnant with my first child that I would be delivering after the "cut-off" age. I had read several articles that discussed the increased risks of having children after 35. I would deliver him 6 months after my 35th birthday. I fully expected to be talked to about amnio and other tests, but nothing was ever mentioned. I was pretty sure I didn't want the added risk of amnio so not being asked was probably a good thing. It was my first time and I probably could have been easily persuaded. The entire pregnancy was treated as if that magic age had not yet passed.

When I became pregnant again (exactly) two years later. The difference was mind-blowing. Everything I didn't wasn't to acknowledge the first time was shoved down my throat the second time. I would be 38 when my daughter was born. Not only was the mentality of the doctors different. I was a veteran. I had done this before and no amount of coaxing could get me to do an amnio or go for genetic counseling. The doctors were miffed and (it seemed) upset that I wouldn't take advantage of these added services they were providing.

I'm not telling anyone NOT to do these. Each Mother has to do what's right for her. Some people are worriers by nature and these added tests could possibly ease their minds. I'm the opposite. I don't worry until I have something to worry about. I did not want to go through counseling so I could be told all the things that possibly could go wrong. I wanted to enjoy my pregnancy. At every turn I felt as though My Doctor's were trying to get rid of me. Each test would be explained and then followed with "...and if the results aren't favorable, we'll transfer you to (the other hospital that deals with high risk pregnancies)". It got to the point where I would just say, "You can't get rid of me that easy. I'm staying here and you're stuck with me." It got to be kind of a joke. I took my prenatal vitamins, took all the "regular" tests and did just as I had planned. I enjoyed my pregnancy.

I guess part of me knew that, no matter what, I was bringing this precious baby girl into the world. I would love her unconditionally no matter what. I know some can't do this and I don't judge them for wanting to know. I just wish my decision not-to-know wouldn't have been judged so negatively.

Please Clean Your Own Plates ~ Fitness Friday


It's Friday. I'm feeling kinda crummy. Pudding Pop has a cold and spent the entire night couching directly in my face. I hope she feels better soon. The upside of getting this cold is the loss of appetite she has demonstrated. I can only hope to achieve a quick trim around the mid-section by not eating for a couple days.

I've hit my goal of 3 hours of exercise per week since the beginning of 2010. Wii Fit Plus is tracking my time and any exercise outside of that is just bonus. I've added 2.5 pound ankle weights and for Valentine's Day the kids got me the riser for the balance board to increase the efficiency of the step aerobics.

I've (sort of) started using Weight Watchers. A dear friend sent me all her information so I can count and keep track of points and only have to weigh in at home. Isn't a bulging Mii enough humiliation?

While I have been steadily working out since January, I wasn't seeing much in the way of results. With the added weights, riser and WW menus I've managed to lose 5 pounds just this week. I think the eating healthier thing is just psychological for me. While I love fruits, vegetables and all food healthy, the minute I resolve myself to eating that way I just want burgers and chocolate.

To make it easier, I purchased and cut up a vegetable medley of zucchini, squash, red onion and orange pepper. I have a large tub and saute up a bowl for an afternoon snack of to accompany meals. I also cooked up and shredded some chicken breasts and have had a spinach salad topped with the chicken each night for dinner. I'm eating a heavier lunch than usual and then eating lighter at the end of the day.

Last night the kids wanted breakfast for dinner. I made buttermilk pancakes, sausage and hash browns. I was completely happy eating my salad while everyone else feasted on some of my "other" favorite foods. Fine until it was time to clear the table and do the dishes. The discarded food on the plates were begging to be eaten.

Note to children...If you are not going to eat everything on your plate, you will need to discard the leftovers before putting your plate on the counter to be washed.
Special Note: If you are tired of hearing about all the fun I am having with my Wii Fit and Wii Fit Plus and do not own a Wii but would like to try out the system, go to Wii Mommies for a great opportunity to get a Wii and the Wii Fit Plus to start getting fit. Looking for 5 non-Wii owners to try out and report your findings. Must be willing to follow a designated program and document results.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

The Recipe Club ~book review



I just finished reading the Recipe Club and it was truly a book I didn't want to put down. Written by Andrea Israel and Nancy Garfinkel, it is mostly comprised of letters written between two unlikely friends. Letters ranging from the time they were in breeches in grade school until they are middle-aged.

Brought together by their parents, Lilly and Valerie share everything. Attending different schools and being so vastly different as people, they managed to create a friendship that would stand the test of time. Opposites in almost every way, these young girls come of age in the 70's and have all the freedoms that that era was known for. One sets of to college as her life long dream. The other is forced into college by a father who doesn't understand or appreciate her other talents. They maintain a (sometimes strained) friendship and through it all share their innermost fears and triumphs.

At an early age the girls started to trade recipes. Each one is named after an event or emotion that they are living at the time of writing. Recipes such as Conspiracy Apple Pie, Wash-Away-The-Blues Berry Cobbler, Home-of-my-Own Hamburgers and Missing You Warmly Lentil Salad are scattered throughout the book as part of the girls attempt at an exclusive recipe club.

I would suggest this book to anyone who enjoys cooking as it is an excellent array of unique recipes. I would also suggest this book to anyone who enjoys a good Lifetime Movie. I can see this book becoming one.

I was sent a copy of The Recipe Club by Andrea Israel and Nancy Garfinkel. While I was sent the book at no cost, I am not being paid for this review and all opinions are my own.

Kevin Smith has Nothing on this Guy

With the recent news of Kevin Smith being ejected from a Southwest flight I've been having flashbacks to my senior year in high school and a trip I took to Las Vegas over Spring Break.

While Kevin may become the new spokes person for fat burners for men, he has nothing on the guy who sat across the aisle from us.

The year was 1986. Security was nothing more than a gate to walk through. Non-passengers were allowed through security, right up to the gate to kiss loved ones good-bye. Smoking was also still allowed on the air crafts.

My friend and I boarded our plan. Excited to be off on an adventure without supervision and going somewhere the other kids wouldn't be. We may have actually coined the term "What happens in Vegas...". Anywho...

There was this guy on the plane. Right across the aisle from us. He was a safety hazard. Not only did his spillage block the aisle and cause difficulty for the food and beverage carts to get through, this man couldn't stay awake. He'd take a bite of food and then immediately fall asleep. His arm would drop to his side, in the aisle, and any food that hadn't made it into his mouth would fall to the floor. He would wake a few moments later for another bite, or because the flight attendants (who were called stewardess') would tap him to get his arm out of the way of the cart.

I know. You're thinking that food on the floor isn't really a hazard. The arm in the aisle may cause a back up in an evacuation situation, but that's rare. But what if I told you he was also smoking? Because he was. Same thing that would happen to his food would happen to the lit cigarettes. He'd take a puff, fall asleep and we would watch in horror as the burning stick would fall to the floor. I'm pretty sure this is the single-most reason that smoking was banned on airplanes. Just saying.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

The View











I've been watching The View on and off since Rosie was on the show. The interaction between the hosts and their guests is always fun to watch. It's also refreshing to witness "Hot Topics" being discussed by opposing views. It's nice to see opinionated women discussing topics unafraid to expose their own views. Shouldn't we all be this way?

I've recently been invited to join an elite group to help spread the word of The View. Mom Central and ABC Daytime have teamed up to create The View Brand Ambassador Group. Doesn't that sound elite? We'll be given inside scoops on topics and guests and they're even asking for our feedback (which excites me most).

If you are a fan of The View, check back next week for more info and "secrets" about the show. If you've never seen the show, you can view full episodes on The View's website. It really is like sitting down with some girlfriends for coffee and some chatting.

Today Victoria Beckam was on. Gosh, to have that beauty and body. I'd love to sit down with her for a chat. First I'd ask her what's the best fat burning exercise that she's used. I'd hope she wouldn't tell me to just stop eating. Looking at her I can't imagine she eats much, but jealousy may have clouded my judgement.

Yesterday they were talking with kids about sext-ing. This is scary stuff and I can't even imagine what it will be like when my kids are actually old enough for a cell phone. They had two teens on who's lives were totally ruined by sext-ing. I'd have made the kids watch if they were older. It was an eye-opening segment.

I look forward to watching the rest of the week and tweeting with the other Ambassadors. Look for us at #theviewmoms. Grab a cup of Joe and join in.



I am a participant in a Mom Central campaign for ABC Daytime and will receive a tote bag or other The View branded items to facilitate my review.

WW~ My Contribution to the V-Day Sugar Stock-up


I know this is supposed to be wordless but I just can't help it. I read this post over at Redhead Ranting yesterday and had to admit that I'm that Mom. I wasn't intentionally trying to outdo or impress. I honestly thought it would be a nice little treat amongst all the cards. I did not know that Valentine's Day was the new Halloween. I swear I didn't. I'm new to this. My oldest is in 1st grade. The extra time I had to do this was after everyone had gone to bed. I poured a glass of wine and tinkered in the kitchen. It was relaxing and enjoyable. It's also a marketing ploy. Last year, when I sent suckers for the Holiday Party, I got an order to custom make some for a Birthday party. There is a method to my madness.

As the kids get older the opportunities to make special moments will diminish. Jennifer mentioned sending prophylactics next year. I think she was kidding. With her you never know. I think if the kids keep getting all this candy each year I'll start stocking up the best acne remedies and send those with the Valentine's. They'll appreciate that, won't they?

Wii extras, Wasabi Peas and the Olympics



It's my favorite time of the week. When I get to say Hell a lot and rant about all sorts of random stuff. Yep. It's What the Hell Wednesday. What the Hell have you been up to this past week? If you would like to rant about it and have a couple of What the Hell moments to share (and who doesn't) head over to Elle and Stacy's place and link up. Way fun.

I added 2.5 pound ankle weights to my Wii Fit workouts. I even did a weigh in with them on (by accident) and was pissed I had gained 1.8 pounds. What the Hell? I thought. Then I danced around realizing I had them on and had actually lost 3.2 pounds. Pretty sure I found it though. Those pounds never stay lost for long.

Then...because I'm determined to lose weight without giving up chocolate and chips, I decided to add an extra fat burner. I added the wii balance board riser and boy, have I mentioned how un-coordinated I am? I'm not sure why I can't get the rhythm right on the side to side, and I'm all the sudden really good at the purple steps. Practice makes Perfect. Perfect is my goal...with riser...and weights.

Boog had a Valentine's Snack-nic. What the Hell? He's 6. I also need to get a patent on that word fast. It's seems to be catching on. Remember you read it here first, kay?

I'm addicted to wasabi peas? Have I mentioned that yet. A guy brought them into work and I've been eating them everyday since. What the Hell? They are crunchy and spicy and I'll never be able to get enough. They surprisingly go well with wine too. Just saying.

Opening Ceremonies for the Olympics was a bust at our house. I was ready and excited. The kids were not as enthused. Hubster wanted to see it and kept getting distracted. I kept rewinding in hopes he's soon show up. At 8:30 (an hour after the start) he told me to go ahead and watch. He was with the kids in the den getting them settled but could tell my frustration watching the poor guy crash over and over. I'd start it when he came into the room and then he would walk back out. I started watching, hit record and fell asleep somewhere around 10:30. I went back to watch it the next day only to find that the delay in the actual torch lighting made the "show" go past scheduled time and I missed it. What the Hell? Trying to find it online is like giving away your first born. I'll assume it was cool.

Okay. I'll leave you with time to read more What the Hell post. Head over the Blue Monkey Butt and see who else is playing.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Snack-nics, Enchanted Journey, and a sick kid. It must be Random Tuesday

randomtuesday

It's Tuesday. That means I get to unload a bunch of random thoughts and you have to listen...or read. There's a bunch of stuff floating around in my head today. You've been warned.

I work one day a week. One. In that time (this week) my 6 year old figured out how to use pictochat (on his DS) and somehow ended up with a Valentines date with the neighbor girl. I've been given conflicting information but what I gather is she invited him over and he accepted but decided he wanted to have it at our house. It was a picnic set for 3:00 so they decided it was a snack-nic. How cute. He woke up at 7:00 and the first thing he said was "How long until my snack-nic?" This went on all day. Constantly watching the clock. Constantly looking to see if his date was even home. If this is any indication of how his dates are going to go when the are real...I'm outta here. Or he'll have to wait and date after he moves out.

Puddin Pop is feeling ill today. She has a fever and is vomiting. She also has ballet and a birthday party. Poor thing insists she is fine and "can make it." I don't have the heart, yet, to tell her she won't be able to go. I've explained that she should stay home so as not to get her friends sick. I'm hoping she can make the decision to stay home on her own, or is sleeping when it's time to go. Any mention of missing dance class and she falls to pieces. Poor thing.

So I'm trying to lose some weight. I'm using my Wii Fit Plus 3-4 times a week and for an hour each time. I also just started Weight Watchers...sort of. I'm not attending meeting or reporting to anyone other than myself. I have awesome friends and one of them sent me all her stuff from when she used it. How cool is that? I've also decided that the best weight loss supplement is busy hands. If my hands are both occupied, they can't be stuffing snacks in my mouth. My new diversion is this...




I bought this for Puddin Pop for Valentine's day. Who doesn't want to be a Princess with a magic wand? It uses both the wii-mote and the nun-chuck thus occupying both hands. It has a two player option but PP always wants to go the opposite way. I'm trying to help all the Disney Princesses after she goes to bed. Shhh. Don't tell. She's actually better at it than I am. Don't tell her that either.





That's it. All my random rants. What do you have swimming in your head? Head over to The Un-Mom and spill your mind.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Rewarding Kids for Report Cards

Do you reward the kids for good report cards? What's the criteria?

When Boog brought home his first progress report last year (that gives general grades for categories instead of the breakdowns) he had all S's (meets grade level expectations) and O's (exceeds grade level expectations). My MIL offered him $1 for every O and 50cents for every S on his report card. That was a mistake. There were 11 categories on the progress report and 50 areas on the report card. I think she owed him $42. We got a chuckle out of it and learned the lesson (it was Kindergarten so we really didn't know). She gave him $10 and told him how proud she was of him.

She continued to give him $10 for each report card that had all S's and O's. He just received his second report card for this year and Hubster wanted to reward him (like his mother does) and thought a Lego kit was a good idea. I said "No." Here's my thinking...

I want to encourage him to do well but I don't think money is the answer, or a toy, at least not now. In looking at his report card he did achieve all S's and O's, but 2 of his O's dropped to S's and no S's went to O's. Does this deserve rewarding? I'm very proud of how well he is doing and have told him that repeatedly, but if we are going to reward him shouldn't it be when there is improvement? Or would that cause him to sandbag when he gets older?

I don't remember getting paid for grades. That's not to say that it isn't a good tool. I just think a system needs to be put in place and stuck to. Next year, second grade, he will get letter grades. I think an all A report card deserves special treatment. I also think that bringing a grade up deserves attention. What methods do you use? I need suggestions now so we can set the expectation before the year starts. Please help.

How do your expectations differ in subjects that you excel (or not) at? If you love math do you expect your child to do well, especially since you can offer so much support? I'm awful and History and Geography. Does my kid get a pass in these subjects because I can't give him as much help? (I'm planning on learning it all with him. Maybe it'll stick this time.) Does someone like Richard Willich expect his child to do well in history, specifically civil war history, with all the materials available to the child? Again, I'm asking for ideas. What do you accept and expect? Does your knowledge affect what is expected of your child (ren)?

I'm off to research the topic and will be back with some experts thoughts on this situation.

This Will Make You Want to Drink








I've been trying to figure out why Boog seems to get stuffy and congested when he goes to be at night. He also seems to get more colds and viruses than the rest of us. Hubster always goes for the most dramatic and expensive solutions and believes it's mole under the house. Wouldn't that affect us all? I started looking into other things.

It could just be that Boog is a first grader and spends more time than the rest of us around germy kids, but his sister never gets anything he has. She could just have a better immune system. Then I came across this video and thought "What disgusting stuff is in his pillow?" I've probably purchased 8 pillows in the past 2 years with Boog and Puddin Pop each getting a new bed but...Boog insists on using the absolute oldest, and flattest pillow we own. I think it probably ranks up there with the germs and dust mites of the last lady. Ewww, right? I'm going to toss it right NOW.

Okay. I'm back.

Now that I know that pillows should regularly (every 4-5 years) be replaced. I'm thinking that writing the purchase date on the tag would be a good idea. Otherwise how would you know?

My daughter has 3 pillows on her bed but two are in pillow shams and never get used. I may rotate them on laundry day. Son has 2 pillows (one now) and I'm looking to replace the one I just threw out with an allergy pillow...just to see if that diminishes his late night stuffiness and susceptibility to colds. I believe Hubster and I have 7 on our bed. He uses pillows behind his back and butt (for support) and between his knees and claims this is the only way he can get comfortable. Who wants to put their head on those? Ewwww. I have a pillow that is unlike anyone else's and always make sure it's my pillow under my head. I haven't always been this anal about my pillow. It started when Hubster started with the back, butt and knee pillows. Do you blame me?

So what is your pillow replacement procedure. Did you have one before now?


Sunday, February 14, 2010

Beatiful Weather and how I spent Valentine's Day

What a beautiful day we had today. After all the random snow, today felt Spring-like. The kids played outside on scooters and bikes and had Hubster not put away the outdoor cushions, I'd of been sitting outside reading a book. Okay, maybe I'm just dreaming about the outside reading. It was only in the 40's, but after all the random snow fall we've had, it really was a welcome surprise.

Hubster took his date (Puddin' Pop) to the pet store and to Lowe's (better her than me) to pick out a new garage door and water heater (sounds like fun, right)? I took my date (Boog) to the Farmer's market for some treats for his Valentine's snack-nic he had later on. It was kinda like a picnic, but at 3pm they decided it was a snack-nic. We bought fresh strawberries, vanilla wafer cookies and hot chocolate. We didn't realize his "date" would also be bringing snacks so they only ate the strawberries.

I have a new love. The real reason we went to the Farmer's market is because one of the managers at work brought in wasabi peas yesterday and I just had to have some of my own. Yum. Definitely worth a try if you like wasabi, even if you're like me and don't really care for peas. This is my new snack food and I know the kids and Hubster will leave them alone. Added bonus.

How did you spend Valentine's Day?

Friday, February 12, 2010

Things I'm Hooked On

I need to "un-plug". Every time I turn around I'm getting sucked into something on a screen. Between Reality TV, Social Networks, and gaming, I could be stuck to the screen all day long. Fortunately we have a DVR, or I may never get any sleep. Here's what I'm hooked on at the moment...

TV

American Idol~ Two days a week and I can't seem to take my eyes off it. Especially now with Ellen.

Survivor~ Just started last night. I have missed a couple seasons of this, but this season is going to be good...really good.

The Good Wife~ Love it, love it, love it. Interested to see how a woman can keep around a man who cheats and it's really good on the law side too.

Other shows that don't have to be watched the same day/night: House, Private Practice, CSI, CSI Miami, Ghost Whisperer, New Adventures of Old Christine, The Middle.

Computer

Blogging~ yep. This stuff I'm doing right here. It's addicting and about the only thing I've stuck with this long...in my life.

Facebook~ Chatting and seeing what others are up to. Games. School of Wizardry~ I swear I'm gonna quit this one. No skill involved and yet I log in twice a day just to take lessons and duel. Garden World~ Here's another one I'm not sure why I'm playing. Gardening doesn't excite me at all, but the flowers are pretty, people send gifts like garden gnomes, decorative pond pumps, and stone benches. It's relaxing and if I ever do get into gardening, I can look at some of my friends gardens for inspiration. Save the Planet~ this is one that claims to give money to different charities. You can play games for virtual money, which I sometimes do. I, at least, log in each day for my bonus $1,000,000. I donate every time I get $5m.

Twitter~ I go in spurts. When I get into a conversation, I get sucked in for too long. I also like tweeting during the reality shows.

Gaming~ The only thing I'm hooked on is Wii Fit Plus. 3-4 hours per week. It's not so much that I'm hooked on Wii Fit, I'm hooked on getting fit and am thrilled with the 4 pounds I've lost so far.

I'm sure there is more. I do other things too. Really. I do.

What are you hooked on?

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Job Search is On

I mentioned earlier about Hubster's job coming to an end. We had the choice to move or to seek employment elsewhere. I told him I would support him in whatever decision he made. I even pointed out positives of both choices. Ultimately, I felt as though the decision should be his. It's his job. He needed to decide if it's worth moving to a far away, COLD place. I moved to get away from the cold so that was on my negative list.

I, myself, am not a big fan of moving. I've heard horror stories from people who've used cross country moving companies, especially the ones used by the Military. Apparently it's expected that you'll lose some things and receive some damaged. I've moved from Michigan to Virginia. I did it myself, with the help of a friend. We drove the big truck with my car towed behind. I felt safe knowing all my stuff was with me. I couldn't imagine having to wait for my stuff to be delivered and then finding out that stuff was damaged. Good thing I'm not a Military Wife.

Hubster made the decision NOT to move. He's an only child and his parents live 2 miles away. He can't imagine being away from them. He grew up here and doesn't want to leave. Now the job search begins. He's already had some interviews and hopefully something will pan out. He feels confident that he will find something and I'm thinking positive too.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Help Children, Win a Washer and Dryer

This is a no brainer. In my infinite quest to find ways to give back, I'm always looking for ways that don't directly take money out of my pocket. Not because I'm cheap, because I don't have a ton extra to give. If I did, I would. So imagine my delight when I came across a stunning Jennifer Garner (who stole my boyfriend a couple years back, but I forgive her) teaming up with Frigidaire to support Save the Children's U.S. Programs. Now, for those of you who posted about helping Haiti instead of helping those in the U.S., on Facebook, I better see you registered for this campaign, it's your chance to make a difference and stop pointing the finger.


Make Time for Change is a Spin and Win campaign where you can win daily and monthly prizes, including a new Affinity Washer and Dryer, and Frigidaire will donate $1 for every spin of the wheel you take as part of their $250,000 commitment to Save the Children's CHANGE program. The program is dedicated to providing nutritious snacks and teaching healthier lifestyles to poverty stricken children right here in the U.S.


I just spun the wheel and am in the drawing for $50 to start or finish a project, I'm also in the drawing for the new Washer and dryer. You can spin the wheel every day. What are you waiting for? Just click on Jen and the kids below to make your contribution of time. And just remember who sent you if you win something.

What the Hell Wednesday~ Commercials



All anyone is talking about the last few days are the Super Bowl commercials. I'll be the first to admit that I only watch for the ads and usually never even know who's playing. I know, What the Hell? This year I just wasn't in the mood to fast forward through all the game play to watch and instead watched some shows I had DVR'd. Hubster went over to the In-laws to watch the game with his dad. I asked him who won when he got home and he didn't even know. He's an ad watcher too.

So I was thinking about ads and remembered it all use to be about the jingle. If you had a catchy jingle, people were remembering it. What happened to jingles? I remember back in the day of 8-tracks, What the Hell, I really am that old. My mom had one of Barry Manilow that had all his classic jingles. I found this on You Tube.



What the Hell? Right? Remember any of those?

My two all-time favorite commercials are the one from McDonalds with the kid in the swing that kept smiling as he went "up" because he could see the Golden Arches (watch it here), and the one with the two brothers dipping Oreos in milk. The younger brother had a sippy cup and he eventually figures out he can drip milk onto his cookie (watch it here). That came out before sippy cups were abundant in my house but long after my infatuation with Oreos began.

What are your favorite commercials?

Now head on over to Blue Monkey Butt and get all your What the Hell moments out of your head!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Valentines Deals, Cookies and Crafts

Gimmee Jimmy's Fresh Baked Cookies Makes the Perfect Gift! -Send Now!

Great deals for great cookies. Lots of Valentine's specials available if purchased on or before February 15th. You have to try them. Yum!

I wanted Boog to make Valentine's for his class but apparently that isn't cool anymore...or ever in his 6 year old life time. Will it get to be cool? He has no problem having me make chocolate suckers for everyone, he just doesn't want to make anything. I'm pretty sure he'd allow me to address the valentines for him too...but I won't.

Michael's had clearance savings, already, on their V-day stuff. It's going down another 20% on Monday. I'll be there stocking up for next year in the hopes that someone will want to make their valentines.

Strep, Super Bowl, Krispy Kreme and Ellen

randomtuesday
Random, Random, Random. If you've got Random, head on over to the Un-Mom and link up...after you read here.

Son says he has a sore throat. Last time that happened I sent him to school and he threw up all over himself in class. He also had strep. He hasn't asked not to go to school, and he doesn't have a fever. I'll be waiting by the phone.

I didn't watch the Superbowl...not even for the commercials like I usually do. Hubster was watching with his Dad at his house and I just wasn't in the mood. I did record it though, in case there was buzz about the commercials and I wanted to see something. There was, and I did. However, in this day and age of computers, I didn't even need my TV. Fox had a whole top 10, bottom 10, and commercials by quarter. Guess the advertisers get their money's worth with all the reporting. Good for them.

We're supposed to be getting some more snow...I think. Just a dusting...or it may be rain. I can't keep up. I've enjoyed the winter weather as it's rare we get any. I think I'm the only one. Snow us in. I'm prepared. Won't even need a trip to the store. What is that about anyway? Bad weather and people run to the store to stock up. I must be a bad shopper because I'm always stocked up. It may be with a bunch of food that no one will eat, but we have food. And why the huge lines at Krispy Kreme before the storms. Are they selling shovels too? How are donuts necessary to survival?

Looking forward to Ellen on Idol tonight. Can't wait to hear what everyone is saying about it tomorrow. I think she's gonna rock. There's a twitter party tonight through twittermoms. I seem to be invisible at twitter parties so we'll see how it goes. Anyone know WHY I'm invisible? What would be the best format to participate? Help Please.

Monday, February 8, 2010

I was so close

Hubster has chronic back pain. He's always on pain meds and it drives me crazy that he can never remember our conversations. He'll ask me the same question over and over. It may be the meds, it may not, but as long as he's on them I'll never know. He recently had another MRI done. We're still awaiting the results. His doctor had suggested that it's time for an alternate solution. Hubster is petrified to have his back operated on but what's going on now isn't working.

The last diagnosis was degenerative disc disease so I googled it to see what all is involved in repairing or at least to alleviate the pain. I came across a medical travel site that advertised Lumbar Dynamic Stabilization. It's a minimally invasive, quick recovery alternative for patients suffering from DDD. There's a form to get more info and quotes but before I got to that I noticed that the procedure is "now being offered in Europe and Mexico." Huh? I'm pretty sure there is no way Hubster is travelling to get back surgery. Why isn't it being done here? I had such high hopes.

Back to my search...

Sunday, February 7, 2010

How did I Survive without a Car Seat

With all the added safety products we have today for our children I often wonder who benefits most. I'm in no way saying they shouldn't be used, I just wonder how I ever managed to make it through my childhood without helmets, pads, and car seats. I (almost) always make sure the kids have their helmets on. My 3 year old loves to wear hers. but she's riding a tricycle. I know it's important to set the expectation now but really? How hurt could she get if she fell off?

My theory on Car seats is this: By having the kids restrained they can't physically fight. If they're not fighting, Mommy (or Daddy) can concentrate better on driving. If Mommy and Daddy are paying better attention to the road, less accidents are surely the outcome. Except, Now (some) Mommy and Daddy's are texting and talking and throwing all that extra concentration out the window which makes those car seats necessary, more than ever, for the kids. What will we find to do next to keep us from paying attention to the road?

Friday, February 5, 2010

7-11 Launches Proprietory Wines


At a recent stop for Slurpee's at our local 7-11, I noticed a new label in their ever-growing wine selections. I purchased a Yosemite Road Cabernet for just $3.99. Skeptical after the last "cute wine cube" I purchased...and tossed, I figured worst case scenario...I'm out $4.

I had a glass last night after the kids went to bed. It wasn't bad. I just poured another glass. Either I'm more in the mood for wine or...it's better than it was yesterday. I like it. It's smooth and a tad fruitier than other Cabs. The finish is quick and non-overbearing. This is an enjoyable, mildly spiced wine that doesn't need food to bring out it's flavors. If I was pairing it with food, I would choose a cheese/cracker/grape tray or a salad of mixed greens, blueberries, walnuts and bleu cheese crumbles.

I went in search of more information about this wine I had never seen before and found out that after researching current purchases of their patrons, 7-11 found their inexpensive (under $5) wines to be gaining popularity. This is from the 7-11 newsroom...

Value-priced wines, those under $5, have been gaining in popularity and enjoying double-digit sales growth at 7-Eleven stores as consumers continue to search for value in their purchasing decisions.

How cool is that? They're finally paying attention to my purchases.

“The development and production of Yosemite Road wines was a global team effort and is just the beginning,” said Kevin Elliott, 7-Eleven senior vice president of merchandising and logistics. “By using our collective purchasing power to negotiate product exclusivity and pricing, we can meet customer demand for quality and value, as well as differentiate our brand from the competition.”

Experienced, award-winning wine-makers John Willumson and Jim McDonald were tapped for the task. The winning vintners created a Chardonnay, described as fresh and zesty with notes of apricot, peach and honey, and a full-bodied Cabernet Sauvignon with juicy plum overtones. Both are well balanced, offered at an affordable price and can be enjoyed anytime of the year.

Who wants to throw stones at those glass tiles of wisdom?

So see. It's not just me looking for value wines. Yes, 7-11 isn't the premiere place to shop for wine, but it is convenient, they do listen, and they are providing more and more choices.

Bathroom Re-model. Need Help.

I've been saying for months (maybe even a year) that I want to re-do our half-bath. It's actually a small project and could be done in a weekend. I need to remove wall paper on the bottom half. Remove the "chair rail" on two walls and then paint. We put in a new hard wood floor and vanity last year and now I just need to pick out a color. That's where I get stumped.

What color(s) do you like in the bathroom? It is the guest bath, after all. Should I go with a theme? I have a friend who did a beachy thing with shells and candles and a peachy color. It was very soothing. I was thinking blueish but then didn't feel it anymore. I also need to replace the light fixture and switch plate and would like something that matches. I like the fixtures from Dolan Designs but really think I need a color scheme first.

Please help. I need suggestions people.

Going back to work when the kids go to school

I swear I get more e-mails for online businesses and schools. I've thought several times about going back to school to get my college degree. Then I look at the cost and just can't believe how expensive it is. I know college credits have gone up in the 20 something years since I left but sheesh. Why so expensive for online classes?

I wonder sometimes if it would be worth it to take a specialized course for something like paralegal courses, nursing or medical assistant training school. At least all the classes would be towards the specified degree and I would be wasting money on pre-reqs.

What to do, what to do. Puddin Pop could go to all day pre-k next year, but that just seem like too much for a 4 year old. If not next year, she will definitely be a full tim student the following year and then what will I do. My previous positions are not even an option as I refuse to spend all those hours away from the kids. I need to look into available positions at the school. That would be the perfect solution. We would be off on the same days and Summer's would be free too.

If you were/are a SAHM do/did you go back to work when the kids go to school? What are your plans?

Do I have to Count Calories?


I've been bad this week. Boog was out of school Monday-Wednesday for "Inclement Weather" and we made the most of it. We wend sledding and had some friends over. It was fun. I did not get my daily workouts done these days and had to force myself to get back on it yesterday. I kept meaning to do it. I kept finding other things to do. Why is that? I finally got on at 4pm and dreaded the daily weigh in since I normally do it first thing in the morning. It wasn't as bad as I thought. I also noticed that I was really tired at around 3 o'clock, like I was before I started regular workouts, which made me realize I wasn't having those sleepy bouts since I started exercising.


I thought by just exercising I could start losing these unwanted pounds. I guess my body feels differently. I'm going to need to watch what I eat. I just got to the point of making one meal for the whole family to eat, and I hate the thought of now making something different for me. It's been 6 years of being a short order cook. I like the idea of counting calories and limiting portions better than eating something totally different. Trust me. The kids and Hubster won't eat most the stuff I do and anything with (visible) vegetables freaks them out. Last night I made pork chops, mac'n cheese and corn. I substituted a salad for the mac'n cheese on my plate. I'm hoping these small changes will help. I also need to get back to eating something in the morning to jump start my metabolism.


Hubster
has chronic back pain and just had another MRI done this week. Every doctor has given a different diagnosis. I tell him to just exercise and get off the couch. I can't imagine that spending all day in a chair and then hitting the couch to lay down is a good ankylosing spondylitis treatment. I would think that getting daily exercise and stretching the muscles would work much better. We don't know that that's what it is. It's just one of the only things that hasn't been suggested yet and we're still awaiting this weeks tests results. Since every MRI yields something different...just saying.


I'd love for him to start using Wii Fit. He could probably stretch those muscles with some of the yoga poses...and then I would do them trying to beat his score. There's only two or three that I do so it may motivate me to do more.

Okay. Before I get off track again, I'm getting off here to go see Mike. This will complete my weekly exercise goal. I'm still on track. I just need to nudge myself to keep at it.


How's your exercise resolutions going?

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Too Much Snow for School and Too Cold for a Fire

Being a Michigander and now living in Virginia I'm amazed at what people think is "a lot" of snow and what they think is "cold". It hasn't gotten cold here. Sure, temps have dropped to the teens at night, but I'm not outside in the middle of the night so I don't feel it.

Schools have been closed because the roads were icy and they couldn't get the parking lots and sidewalks cleared. I get it. It's a safety issue. I remember as a kid listening to the radio every morning in the Winter and hearing all the rural school closings. It was rare that us Capitol City Public School kids got snow days. I'm glad I have friends who have lived other places that can laugh with me while others stay home in "panic" mode.

Natives of Virginia are also very susceptible to cold. My In-Laws demand that everyone wear slippers when they come over because they insist the floors are cold. I like to go barefoot. Especially since they keep the thermostat at 78.

Friday Hubster was going to get fire wood on his way home to build a fire, then decided it was a bad idea. He said "It's too cold for a fire." Something about the fire sucking all the heat out of the house. If 30 is too cold for a fire, what is the acceptable temp to build one without "losing heat"? He ended up caving (3-1) and went out to get the wood. The kids and I slept in front of the fire, which Hubster thought was a bad idea for the reason mentioned above. He also thought we'd freeze once the fire went out. We were all very cozy and no one complained of being cold.

When we were re-doing our foyer and bathroom floor I toyed with the idea of putting tile in the bathroom. My MIL insisted it was a bad idea because it would be too cold on our feet in the winter. She was also against the wood floors we did have put in for the same reason, and she warned of the water stains that would develop when even the smallest drops got on the floor.

We're not even in the far south. I wonder how people in Florida react to cold weather. I'll bet most don't even have Winter "gear". Or maybe they do, and they pull it out and bundle up when temps get in the 50's.

Valentines Back-up Plan

I had planned on getting the dippin stix Valentines from Oriental Trading for Boog to give to his classmates. I saw them last week and went in to order but got side tracked. I went in again yesterday to find out that they were on sale, 24 for $3.99. The problem is, they won't guarantee that they'll be here on time unless I pay $20 for expedited shipping. My gut tells me they would be here on time if I used regular ground shipping, but I'm not going to do it. I'm scared. Afraid that if I bank on it coming, it won't. It's just the way things work out for me.

My backup plan is construction paper and candy suckers. I'm pretty sure this will go over just as well...if not better. I'll be buying the candy melts today and starting on these.
Boog has been cutting out hearts for the last couple weeks anyway so I'll pick up some red construction paper and he can cut and "address" all his hearts and then we'll attach the suckers.
I was trying to get out of the extra work. I'm not sure why. Now that I have a new plan I'm getting excited about doing it. I'm sure these will go over well. I remember as a kid feeling so proud the few years I made my own Valentines. I also liked receiving them.
I'm hoping the kids will take some pride in creating Valentines and feel good about what they accomplish.