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.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Holy 500

500 posts.

I'm in awe of myself. I've never stuck to any "hobby" this long. I guess always being considered "talkative" isn't so bad after all...unless you're the person who has to listen. What do you write to celebrate 500 posts? I thought I would write about all the reasons I kept going. Why I love it, stuff like that. Here goes.

I started a blog as something to do. I found myself (by choice) as a SAHM with some extra time that I didn't want to use up on things like cleaning and laundry. I started writing. When I realized I could make a little money by doing sponsored posts I was ecstatic. I thought "this will get me out of going back to work when PP goes to school." It probably won't. I soaked up all the sponsored posts I could get my hands on and found myself with an extra $200-$300 in my pocket each month. I even hit $500 one December which was great for extra Christmas presents. I got bored writing about stuff that didn't even really interest me. No one was paying attention anyway. I was using EC to boost my rankings but everyone was just dropping and running. I stopped taking every post I could get and found things that interested me to write about. I also started focusing on other writers to try and decide what I wanted my blog(s) to be. I'm still working on that. I think we always are. As we grow as people and writers our focus changes, that's part of the fun. As I started meeting people and getting to "know" them through their blogs I found more people who thought what I had to say was interesting or at least worth commenting on. That got me even more hooked. My stats are way down from a year ago but my comments are up. I've joined great groups like Tribal Blogs, Mom Central and Twitter Moms, that allow me to meet even more like minded people. I now review stuff I'm actually interested in (wine, video games, food products, and online services) I mostly get the products and get paid for my time. It's not as much as it use to be, but I'm truer to myself and so I enjoy the posting rather than dread the thought of "coming up with something". It's a learning process.

The people that have inspired me, befriended me, and think just like me are another reason I've kept going. They must be recognized.

Jen @ Redhead Ranting and Tribal Blogs. She says what most of us are thinking and does it with no shame. She is funny and has courage. Never a dull moment on her blog. She is also relentless in making friends and helping new bloggers find their way (Tribal Blogs proves this).

Sandy @ Traveling Suitcase. She has a way of making history interesting. She takes us all along on her vacations and has tips and ideas on how to do it right whether traveling with kids or other adults.

Randy @ Winewhoreblog. Randy approached me on doing a duo wine review when he first started and it was a ton of fun. His blog took off and he found instant stardom leaving me in the dust, lol. It was incredible and exciting to watch. He's slowed down. (I think his wife is pregnant but he's not talking.) I wish him continued success with whatever direction he decides to go. I also credit him for allowing me into his world and getting lots of free wine sent my way.

Joe @ Whywineblog. Another fantastic person I met through Randy. A wine enthusiast who I was fortunate to have lunch with while he was in town for a vacation. Meeting new people and putting real faces to online contacts ROCKS!

Julie @ Momspective and Wii Mommies. Julie's story of losing 60 (now 100) pounds through Wii Fit and EA Active inspired me to keep an eye on her. She is one funny Momma and is another who isn't afraid to discuss ANYTHING. Who else could do a douche review? And pull it off fabulously.

Re @ Bad Gal Says. She not only post thought provoking topics but reached out and offered to do a post for me when I was in a slump. Probably the best post on this site. How can I not be grateful to such wonderful people.

There are so many more but these are my crushes at the moment. The people I always stop by to visit when I'm not looking for new people to stalk.

Blogging is a great way to get things off your chest. We all (mostly) put restrictions on what we will and will not post about. Those that are willing to put it all out there are the most compelling to me if they know how much to tell.

I am excited about my future in this online world and can't wait to meet more great people and look forward to a day I can meet some of these great writers face-to-face. Maybe before my 1000th post?

Happy 500!

American Idol...My Take on the Finale

American Idol has come to a close.

Season 9's winner is Lee Dewyze!

I couldn't be happier.

AI has gotten some bad press this year. Several people are amazed the show is still on and even more people claim this is the worst season yet. I must be tone deaf. I love the show and don't think this season was any different than past seasons and am thrilled they left out the "gimmick" people like bikini girl and Norman Gentle. It's a people invested show and I think, if you're a hater of the outcome, you're neglecting to really understand how the show works. Just saying.

Here's my take...

Crystal was my favorite from the top 24. I wanted her to go all the way. I predicted Crystal, Big Mike and Andrew in the final 3 (Out of the top 24). It didn't quite work out that way. It never does. There are a lot of variables and while some people, like Lee, soar in their talent, others get lost in the mix. As America watched, this youngin' (24 is young to me) "brought it" each week. We didn't see much of him during the tryout phases so I was shocked when I first heard him sing in the top 24. I decided to keep an eye on him. As he found his confidence, his humble demeanor drew me to him. By week 7 I was routing for him to win. There's also the "Daughtry-affect" that comes into play. You realize you have two talents that will do phenomenally well and have to pick which would do better under the title. Crystal, like Daughtry, in my opinion, will do better not having to follow the guidelines of the Idol Winner.

America picks their favorites early on and we're allowed to change our minds. We've spent hours watching these performers and feel like our votes should count. When one of our favorites goes home those votes have to go somewhere else (if you're of the voting type) so it's no shock that when Casey went home Lee was the winner. See what I'm saying?

Some are blaming the 'tween crowd for producing back-to-back-to-back cute, stubbly, pseudo-rocker winners the last 3 years. I'm not a 'tween. If the 'tweens were really in control shouldn't Aaron Kelly have won? Three years ago I want David Archulletta to win from the jump. David Cook was another (like Lee) of those guys you never really saw early on. We watched him grow as an artist and by the end I was excited for either of them to win. Last year, I invested my votes (in my head, never picked up the phone) for Danny Gokie. He had a large fan base and again, when he left those votes had to go somewhere. A Danny Gokie fan doesn't just change their taste and vote for Adam Lambert, those votes go to the guy who isn't Adam Lambert. That's what makes the show so fun. It's anyone's game, really. It all depends on whether your style is like another favorite. So, in the end, America votes for the music they like best. Makes sense, right?

I'll be interested to see who replaces Simon. The show will definitely be lacking something without him but it's the talent that I watch for so I think the show will be okay.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Twitter Hop ~ Super Simple, Super Fun

I've had a ton of fun meeting new people with this Twitter Hop the last few weeks. If you are interested in gaining more followers, simply follow the directions below and get out there and meet some people.

Welcome to Twitter Hop Thursday, hosted by Simply Stacie, The King’s Court IV, Little Yaya’s, Review Retreat, and Moms Wear Your Tees!

Would you like more Twitter followers and be introduced to more neat blogs and businesses out there? Come and join us!!

1. Add your Twitter to the MckLinky (you only have to add it to one and it will appear on all).

2. Click on the Twitter for the six hostesses and follow each of them on Twitter. We will follow you back.

3. Follow as many people on Twitter as you like, but make sure to leave comments with links so they’ll know where to follow you!

Spread the word and add this MckLinky to your blog! Write your own post or copy and paste this one. Below the MckLinky box, you’ll see “Want to be a part of this Blog Hop? Click here for instructions and code….” Have fun Twitter-Hopping along!

***New this Week*** We have selected a Twitterer of the Week from last week’s entries and the lucky winner is Frugalapolis!!! They will be in the #6 spot! We will choose next week’s winner from everyone who participated today.

Please only add your Twitter url. All other entries will be deleted. Thank you!!!
This is a Blog Hop! 74 entries so far... you're next!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Shrek Forever After ~ Good Family Fun

Wow. Where have I been?

We took the kids to see Shrek Forever After 3D last night. Friday is always pizza and movie night but we decided to celebrate Daddy's new job with a "New Release" at the theater. It was Puddin Pop's first time watching in the theater. The movie was good. Fiona Rocked her Warrior side, Shrek and Donkey were their usual selves and Puss'n Boots was caught without his protective clothing, all soft and chubby. The story line taught a clear message which is always good. I was most in awe of the 3D. Even the previews were in 3D and I'm not sure what rock I've been hiding under. 3D Rocks. We watched Coraline in 3D, at home, it just wasn't the same.

Last week we received this gift pack from Activision and MomCentral.

I love Shrek. A storybook, Mad Libs and the new Shrek Forever After game for the Wii. Puddin Pop claimed the book, which is delightfully illustrated, Handsome snagged the Mad Libs, which were one of my favorites as a kid, and we grabbed the Wii controllers to sit and play the game. Rated Everyone 10+ (for the fight scenes) we felt comfortable allowing both kids (4 and 6) to play the game with an adult...just in case.

We had been playing the game all week. There are battles with witches and pumpkins but it's mild violence and nothing graphic. I know some people would be bothered by this for young kids but I'm of the belief that if we play together and Hubster and I are explaining what our expectations are pertaining to this behavior it becomes a learning activity as well as some good family fun.

Shrek Forever After encourages team play. Similar to the Lego series of games, different characters have different talents and all must participate to get the job done. We played this in pairs for two reasons. 1) We only have two nunchucks. 2) Handsome really like to be where the action is. Playing with only two people allows for one-on-one time as well as gives him the opportunity to change to whichever character is needed to get the task done. We will probably be adding the extra two nunchucks to our accessories to be able to all play together. I hope the family play without the ability to change characters during play will prove to be a beneficial bonding time, especially for my two highly competitive (with each other) children.

It was fun to see the Movie after playing the game for a while. Both kids recognized different parts from the game. It was fun to see them recognize and put together the different parts of the storyline. We've now officially seen all the Shrek movies and are a little sad there will be no more. At least we have the game to continue the adventure. The book to remind us of one of our favorite characters, and the Mad Libs to create our own stories.

I wrote this review while participating in a blog tour campaign by Mom Central on behalf of Activision and received the items necessary to facilitate my review. In addition, Mom Central sent me a gift card to thank me for taking the time to participate.

Wordless Wednesday~ 80's Day at the Elementary School

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Random Tuesday ~MEcation, New Job and a Ring

Tuesday, Tuesday, Tuesday. It must be time for some random, some blog hopping, and finding new Twitter and Facebook Friends. Yep. It's a busy busy day. No one does Random like The Un Mom and her followers. Join us all and get those tidbits of knowledge out of your head. Nothing is too silly for ...


If we're friends on Facebook you already know that I'm out of town. Taking a little MEcation to get rejuvenated before Hubster goes back to work. I actually planned it before the new job came through but then it did so that's what I'm telling people. I just needed a few minutes (days) of quiet to collect my thought and get back into the swing of things. I need to re-appreciate my family and hope they will do the same for me.

So, yep. Hubster got the job he's been waiting forever for. He'll start next week and is very excited. I'm excited to have him out of the house so I can get reacquainted with Mike (my Wii Fit trainer). I'll bet he's missed me.

American Idol Finale tomorrow!!! I predicted Crystal would win from the top 24 and she still may...but I REALLY want Lee to win. I will so buy whatever either of the records.

Speaking of music. I made the 3+ hour drive to Raleigh yesterday and listened to music very loudly the whole way. No one complained it was too loud or music they didn't like. It was heaven.

Lots of follow back blog hops going on. I got a bunch of new twitter followers last week and have been making a ton of new friends on Facebook. I'm too lazy to do a fan page for my blogs and already have them all linking into my personal page. I sometimes wonder if this is such a good idea. It probably isn't. If I create a fan page wouldn't it be super rude to "unfriend"people I don't know and send them to my blog pages? I think it would be. What to do, what to do.

I have Relay for Life next weekend and have only raised $45 of my $200 goal. I'm not a good fundraiser.

A friend just sent me a picture of a ring on her finger (text) and it's a band. Since she's became officially divorced like two weeks ago, what should I assume this is? I texted back "You better call me TODAY!" I guess I could have congratulated her, but since I'm not sure what to congratulate her for...You see my problem.

I'm randomed out. Don't forget to kit up Keely and the others for more fun tidbit brain dumping.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Just Taking a Moment


Hubster got the confirmation letter for his new job. He'll be starting on June 1st. It's been over three months since he started talking to this group and it was the only job he really wanted. It's a relief in this economy to once again feel secure. We've spent the last couple months looking into better deals with cell phone, cable, Internet, and car insurance companies. I think we have found the best deals with all of these providers and have skimmed our usages down to fit our budget. If we can continue to minimize and reduce our spending (we previously already paid off all our credit cards and re-negotiated our mortgage) we will actually be way better off in the future. The kids may get help with college yet:)

Thanks to Hubster for sticking it out when the rest of us doubted you!

Thursday Thunks ~ My Life in ABC's

Where we make you think a little bit before you blog!

We pick a subject, and your job is to interpret it anyway you want. Write about it on your blog... simple as that. Maybe you can interpret it as a picture - we don't care!
Please only leave a link if you have written a Thursday Thunks post. Please mention us in your post, and link back to the blog here.
Don't forget to go visit the other participants' blogs. Read and comment about all their Thursday Thunks! Thats what all this is about afterall, isn't it? We'll have so much fun and become lifelong friends....
The TT questions are brought to you by Berleen, the color of black coffee, which I need more of and the number 8,299,598,330.

This week is going to be easy... just one question. Ok, well maybe not so easy. Take each letter of the alphabet and describe something in your life... don't skip any!

A Always ON TIME. I hate being late.
Before kids I was a little wild and crazy. Okay. That hasn't changed
credit reports . Anyone else tired of getting and seeing offers for them?
D Doing laundry isn't that bad. Putting it all away Sucks!
E Easy Going...most of the time.
Healthy. (as in not skinny)
Jam Maker (as of last week).
K Kinky (TMI?)
L Love to read.
Mindful of others.
Never met a wine I didn't like. (ok. maybe just one or two)
Open as in wide. Not a whole lot off limits.
P Playful
Questioner. I need answers people.
R Restless.
V Very interested in reading others ABC's
Wine Lover
X X-sister-in-law (4 times)
Y Yell too much.
Zoo Member

Twitter Hop Thursday

Welcome to Twitter Hop Thursday, hosted by Simply Stacie, The
King's Court IV, Little Yaya's and Blessed, Review Retreat and Moms Wear Your Tees!

Would you like more Twitter followers and to be introduced to more cool people to follow? Come and join us!!

1. Add your Twitter to the MckLinky (you only have to add it to once and it will appear on all).

2. Click on the Twitter ID for the five hostesses and follow each of them on Twitter. We will follow you back.

3. Follow as many people on Twitter as you like, but make sure to leave comments with links so they'll know where to follow you! The more people you follow, the more follow you back!

Spread the word by tweeting this link! You can use the share button right below the post. You can also add this MckLinky to your blog! Write your own post or copy and paste this one. Below the MckLinky box, you'll see "Want to be a part of this Blog Hop? Click here for instructions and code...." Have fun Twitter-Hopping along!
This is a Blog Hop! 63 entries so far... you're next!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Totally Random Tuesday

Tuesday is for randomness. If you don't believe me check out The Un Mom and all the linkers. Everyone's playing and it's tons of fun.


Did Russell really think he'd win Survivor? Does he not realize that he's missing the likeable component? He doesn't get it. I hope they don't let him play again. I can't watch him another season. I wanted Parvarti to win but...Oh well.

Do you ever feel like you just can't keep up with technology? We used to have all the new stuff...and then we had kids. Not only is it not financially possible but everything changes so fast.
I was all over Napster when it was free and now the thought of downloading to ipods and mp3 players stumps me. My CD/tape player works just fine. Don't judge. I feel like my parents must have.

Puddin Pop has been watching Snow White the last two days. Why did I never notice how annoying her voice was? It's almost hard to hear her. Maybe because it's so whiny and I've learned to tune that out?

MSN has trial versions of games. You can download and try them for one hour. There used to be a glitch and you could play longer as long as you didn't exit out of the game. Now at the one hour mark they close down. You can then decide if you want to buy it or not. Last week I tried a game and, I guess, downloaded the tool bar. BAD IDEA. Yesterday I realized they have a "game of the day". Instead of a one hour trial you can play the game until midnight. I got nothing done yesterday except...finishing the game. Today's game is Fishdom. I hope it sucks.

It's raining outside which for some reason makes me want chili. Anyone got a good recipe?

That's my random for today. Now go to The Un Mom and link up or read some more great random posts.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Time to Tackle the Dreaded Swimsuit Search

We had a work picnic yesterday that hardly anyone showed up for. The boss and his family, The four of us, one of the young girls that just started working (and is also bestest buddies with Boss' daughter) and one other manager and his wife. It was perfect. Sucked a little that no one else showed but the kids had a great time. We had plenty of food. Once the Manager and his wife left we realized that everyone that was left was our Vacation crew. We've got a house booked in Nags head for a week in August and it will be my Boss and his family, the four of us, and the bestest buddy of Boss' daughter. So the dreaded topic of swimsuits came up.

Turns out the Boss' wife has already purchased hers. I thought we could tackle the shopping together but apparently she is was more organized than I am (we already knew this). So now I must take on this chore alone. I don't even know what style I want. My back is breaking out but I'm sure the sun will provide the perfect acne solutions for that. I'll start looking online. Anyone find the perfect suit and want to share the information? I really want to get this task done so I can start getting excited about the trip and start planning menus and excursions. Is it August yet?

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Joe Corbi's Crayola Pizzas

Here's a re-post from a year ago. The rest of these pizza are still in the freezer. I should have pulled them out for our sleepover a couple weeks back. Just loking at them, though, makes me feel as though I've taken a dose of appetite suppressants, that or I feel too nauseous to eat.

Our neighbor has been coming by each year for a fundraiser selling Joe Corbi's pizza since we moved in (6 years tomorrow). Originally they only had 3-4 pizza kits (crust, cheese, toppings) and two types of frozen cookie dough. Now they have branched out to bread stix, pretzels, and other treats. Last year we ordered crayola cookie dough. We received 4 tubs of various colored cookie dough and the kids loved making cookies with them. It was like creating with playdoh but with the added bonus of baking and eating your creations.

This year I decided to try the Crayola Pizza kit. We received a box with 8 rectangular pizza crusts (personal size) 4 pink and 4 blue (not a typo). The box also had 2 each of orange, pink, red and green pizza sauce, and 8 individual packs of cheese. I let the kids pick their colors and make their own pizzas tonight and they had a BLAST! I have to admit that Boog's pizza tasted much better than PP's. I'm not sure if it was the sauce or the crust, but her's just had a funny taste to me. Both kids ate their entire pizza and want to know when they can make them again. Do these look good to you?

PP making her VERY Pink Pizza

Boog decided to go with a Blue crust and Orange sauce

Here they are watching them bake

Ta Da! The finished products. (Boog added pepperoni to his)

So if you want to have a good time with the kids making pizzas, these were a ton of fun. If you want to actually EAT the pizza, go with one of their other pizza kits. Just a recommendation based on my tastes. The kids loved them.

Friday, May 14, 2010

So many Questions My Head is Spinning

I hope Hubster got disability insurance with our Cobra package because someone is about to get hurt. I'm just not sure who yet. I think it may even be me that deserves a good beating...

Handsome does well in school. He's in the top reading group, does well in Math and excels in Science and Social Studies. We got his final progress report home yesterday and he received his first "N" (Needs Improvement) for Work Study. This is the work he's supposed to be doing in class. It wasn't a total shock. He had problems earlier where he was playing around during centers and not completing his work. He was even disturbing other kids which caused him to be at a table by himself for a full month. He hated that and we thought the problem was resolved. Fail.

Two weeks ago we received a note from the teacher attached to a stack of Incomplete (in class) assignments. We made him complete all 13 that night. It took less than 30 minutes. We've been asking him (probably the wrong person to ask) each day if he completed his classwork and he's been telling us "yes". He claimed he was all caught up. Fail (again).

This morning he wanted to switch to a different back pack and when Hubster was helping him he came across a packet of Incomplete worksheets in his front pocket. This is where I start blaming myself. I've been letting Hubster help with homework each night since he is out of work. I haven't even been in his backpack other than to put his lunch in. Mommy=Fail. I'm pretty sure I would have seen these sheets. Handsome says he took them out of his classwork folder when they had a substitute...last week. He didn't want the teacher to know he didn't finish and thought "getting rid of the evidence" was a better idea. He went through a bunch of emotions when we found them. First he was sad. "I feel like such a bad boy." That's his manipulation to make us feel sorry for him. When he realized we were going to take them to the teacher to find out what the deal was he got angry. "Why did Dad have to go through my back pack?" "It's all his fault." "No one would ever know if he hadn't done that." He was beside himself. Fear, anger, sadness...Off to school we go.

The teacher was visibly surprised that she hadn't noticed. Each week they bring home all their classwork. Wouldn't she have noticed sheets missing when grading? I don't know the system. I'm going to know the system before the day is done. I'm also spending more time on homework (catching up the classwork) this weekend.

Basically he tried to get one over on everybody. Upset he got caught. No reason not to have finished it in class. It's not hard for him. He's not disrupting others. What is he doing? Why didn't the teacher realize he was just sitting there doing nothing? Why didn't we? Why is he lying about it? How do we get him to focus and complete his work? How do we make him understand the lying is unacceptable and the most concerning? So many questions. Time for some answers!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Facebook, Speed Racer, 3.14 and More...

The TT questions are brought to you by Berleen, the color of black coffee, which I need more of and the number 8,299,598,330.

Are you a Facebooker? Are you addicted to those stupid games that suck a person in at the drop of a hat? Would you care to share your Facebook identification link so that we may all stalk you be your friend?
I am a Facebooker. I have played games but am not currently playing any now. I get bored with them really fast. My badge is over there on the right. I'd love to be FB friends.

If you had to be magically transformed into an animal that you loathe, which one would it be? And don't give me those "none" answers...
A mouse? I really wouldn't like to be a mouse.

What is the strangest thing you have said to:

* get a job?
* get a date?

I don't think I've ever said anything strange for either. It's never been hard for me to get either. I did find myself with my zipper down after a series of interviews for my very first job at 16. I got the job...and maybe a reputation that paved the easiness of all further positions?

What cartoon character do you find the most sexiest?
Speed Racer

When dog food is new with improved tasting, who tests it?
My kids use to regularly eat dog food when they were little. Should I count them?

What does OK actually mean?
It could mean "OK, I heard you." or, if someone gave me what they thought were the best weight loss pills and I said "They're OK." It would mean they are not the best, not even that good, just OK. Isn't it also Oklahoma?

If a person owns a piece of land do they own it all the way down to the core of the earth?
I'm only interested in the top layer until I can afford an in-ground pool then I'll want depth but not even close to the depth you're talking about. I'd say no and it's probably not sage to dig that deep.

When you were in high school and were sitting in math class... when the day came to learn about 3.14, did you get hungry?
Not a big fan of 3.14. I'm more an Ice cram Gal...and brownies.

Have you ever been on the radio?

Beans, beans the magical fruit The more you eat, the more you toot The more you toot, the better you feel So let's have beans at every meal!
Why do people say that when beans are vegetables?

I thought they were legumes. Neither rhymes with toot so....

What about tv? And I don't mean physically on top of the tv either, you silly people. Same goes for the radio question.

Do you think Adam & Eve had belly buttons?
Of course. Why wouldn't they?

If you were going to own a liquor store or a bar, what would you name it?
No idea. Don't really want a liquor store, Cosmos would be a good name for a bar.

How about you own a grocery store - what's it's name?
Another thing I would never own. No name comes to mind.

If you could only watch one tv show for the rest of your life and no other, what would it be? And yes, it's going to be in series form so you don't actually have to watch the same episode over and over.
Crap. That would be hard. It would have to be commercial free. I wouldn't want to see ads for other shows. That would be tough. I'll say Survivor but reserve the right to change my mind.

What was the name of your 3rd grade teacher?
You had to ask. I can think of every teacher from Kindergarten to 6th grade but am now drawing a blank on third grade. I'm going over to Facebook to ask.

Do you know how to parallel park?
Yes and I still suck at it...try to avoid it at all costs.

What kinds of cereal do you have in your home right at this very moment?
Rice Krispies, Captain Crunch, Some generic Peanut butter Crunch and I think some others.

If you were to have a garage sale tomorrow, what is the first item you own that you would say "I'm selling THAT!"?
We have a surplus of ride-on toys that the kids have outgrown and they fill the garage so I would sell those. But I have no interest in having a garage sale so they'll be here for a while longer...until I donate them.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

What the Hell Entrecard?

I can't help it. I did my Wordless Wednesday post here and a What the Hell Wednesday post here and then went in to Entrecard to look for something and saw something that qualified for both. So I'll be double participating this week. It's cool, right?

Could someone please explain how EntreCard has let this shit happen? I've been reading about a lot of people leaving and had come to the conclusion that I would continue to "use" them for my benefit and not let them rule me by excessive dropping. After seeing this, and knowing I would never get a response from them, I think it just may be time for me to jump ship as well. It's like walking into a billboard advertising natural testosterone. Has anyone else been bombarded like this?

What the Hell???

Too Much TV, Facebook and American Idol ~What the Hell

Wednesdays are great for getting all the "What the Hell" moments out of your head. Sharing them with the world and feeling better for doing so. Created by Stacey and Elle at Blue Monkey Butt, I regularly steal it and link up. Try it!

Facebook is a crazy way to see how other parents choose to raise their kids. A glimpse into the braver souls. I do not consider myself over protective but is has never entered my mind to take my young kids atv riding. What the Hell? If I'm honest, it has entered my mind. To the extent that Hubster thought it would be a good idea and I adamantly said "NO WAY!" end of subject.

I had a guy and his 7-8 year old son come into the boat store to buy some supplies. Turns out the father was assembling a skateboard ramp for his young son. Again. What the Hell? He said something about their not boys unless they break something. Yeah. My kid's sporting a cast from a Frisbee accident. He owns a skateboard and I have all ideas he and his friends will be building jumps and ramps, I'm just not doing it for them.

American Idol. What the Hell? Those duets ROCKED last night. All I could think before they started though was "What if one of them is really bad?" That's a lot of trust to have to put in another person when you're this close to the Finals. Glad it worked out for all of them. My guess is that Casey is going home tonight.

Yes. I'm a little addicted to TV. It's my guilty pleasure after everyone goes to bed. I veg on the couch and watch 2-3 hours of recorded shows. Hubster's started coming back down (he usually goes to bed with the kids). I don't mind him watching but after years of having this time alone, and getting into shows he doesn't even know exist, It's frustrating spending my quiet (alone) time answering questions about the story lines and characters. What the Hell? I hope he catches up soon.

While were on the subject of my TV addiction...What the Hell are the peeps on Survivor thinking? Russell must.go.this.week.

All righty. I'm off to go Strawberry picking with Puddin Pop. It's looking to be a beautiful day.

Wordless Wednesday~ Legos

Monday, May 10, 2010

Strawberry Picking, Killer Otters and a New Hobby

Gotta love Tuesdays. It's an opportunity to take all the fragments in you mind and put them together in completely random order to create a post. All the cool kids do it. Give it a try. Then go over to The Un Mom to link up and read more random from the other cool kids.


Why when I go shopping somewhere like Target I see a barcode scanner everywhere I look until I have a product that I want to check the price on and then they all seem to have disappeared? Is it just me? Why can't they just put a price on everything?

I want to go strawberry picking and make my own preserves this year. Anyone got a recipe? Puddin Pop also thinks we should make some Strawberry wine. She remembers how fun it was to stomp the grapes last year and would like to do it again "with her feet." I think we'll wait for the grapes.

American Idol is getting to the end. I really (now) want Lee to win. Love the sound of his voice and I could look at him all day.

Puddin Pop was having nightmares about killer-out-of-water otters attacking her in her room. I couldn't figure out where the otters were coming from. She said "from Barbie Rapunzel." Gothel has an animal around her neck named Otto and PP figured it was an otter. I'll admit I had to google "Barbie Rapunzel" to find out what it was. It's a ferret. We took her to the pet store to see and pet a ferret. She also isn't watching the movie right now. The nightmares have stopped.

I think I may have found a new hobby. This is pretty cool. I stole it from here.

I'm pretty sure it would take me a lot longer to get it to something I was happy with but it would be really neat as part of a Holiday table setting. I'll shoot for Thanksgiving. That should give me enough time.

I'm out of random. What do you have?

Great Mother's Day Weekend

What a great weekend. Friday we took the kids to Busch Gardens and rode some rides and had dinner. Saturday we hung around the house and Hubster took the kids out for a while and then they had a water gun battle in the yard. They brought me home a faux wine barrel with some fresh basil and cilantro to plant with my chives. Hubster thought about getting different flowers for the yard but the whole gardening thing just isn't for me and a good friend pointed out how resentful I would feel each season trying to keep these up. I did get a hanging basket of flowers for the porch and my In-Laws gave me another basket full of a variety of different flowers that I will split up and also hang. I'm pretty excited about that. The kids surprised me yesterday with a beautiful heart and key necklace with both their birthstones (diamonds and rubies) and told me it's because "they hold the key to my heart". We had a fabulous seafood lunch and then spent a couple hours enjoying the weather and hanging out with the neighbors chatting.

Now it's Monday. Back to business. Puddin Pop and I are talking about going strawberry picking and Hubster is going to amp up the job search. I'm not getting any workouts in while he's home. I need him to go to work. He has several possibilities but it seems as though these companies have slowed down their hiring process. He really thought he would have been working 6 weeks ago. I suggested he stop wasting his time "waiting". He agrees.

Okay. I'm out. Have a great Monday.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

We're Lovin' It. Sonicare for Kids ~ Review

When Mom Central asked if I was interested in reviewing the new Sonicare Toothbrush for Kids. I knew this was something I must have. Handsome, my (almost) 7 year old, does a great job of brushing his teeth twice a day but his sister, 4 year old Puddin Pop, hems and haws each and every time. I thought a fun, new toothbrush, and the chance to help Mommy "review" a product would benefit both of us in this activity.

Monday morning Puddin Pop came down with strep and the doctor said "You'll need to get a new tooth brush after 48 hours." Tuesday morning our new Sonicare toothbrush arrived. Puddin Pop was so excited to try it out. Unfortunately she would have to wait until the following evening to give it a try. It was a good lesson for her in patience.

The Sonicare for Kids toothbrush comes with two brush heads. A small one for children 4-6 and a larger one for kids 7 and up. One for each of my precious babies. Explaining to Puddin Pop that they weren't really sharing toothbrushes, which we've taught them is not a good thing, was a little tricky but she finally understood.

The Sonicare for Kids toothbrush is designed to foster good brushing habits and has a timer that increases to get kids up to the recommended two minutes of brush time. With signal beeps, it also reminds them to hit different areas to ensure a full cleanse. Two speeds, for the different age groups, allows for the right amount of vibration appropriate for each.

Puddin Pop used to stand at the mirror with her toothbrush in hand and debate whether she was going to brush alone or have me do it. She'd always insist on doing it herself and then just stand there making faces in the mirror. After 5 minutes or so she would Insist I do it. On days when we were running late, Ive gotten her set up and walked away to do other things only to find her toothbrush with toothpaste still on it, sitting on the counter when we come in for night-time brushing.

Things have changed.

On her first use of the Sonicare she came down singing to Daddy "I used my new Sonicare and I loved it." She no longer hems and haws, but instead immediately starts brushing and doesn't stop until the brush turns off. I like knowing the brush will gradually (over the next 90 days) increase her time until she is up to 2 minutes. I'm pretty sure she won't even notice.

Handsome is also thrilled with the new brush. Although he's not super excited with the yellow cover (It comes with 3 different covers to make the brush look like new. They stick on so we will switch when the yellow one comes loose) he loves the feel of the brush in his mouth. When asked what he likes best he replied (It tickles the roof of my mouth and that's fun."

Sonicare for Kids is currently available Nationwide at Wal-Mart, Target, and at I may have not been inclined to purchase this based on the cost, but having seen what a difference it makes in our routine and the fact that it removes 75% more plaque than manual toothbrushes while helping teach good oral habits, it's definitely worth every penny.

I wrote this review while participating in a blog tour campaign by Mom Central on behalf of Sonicare and received a free Sonicare For Kids toothbrush to facilitate my review.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Sebeka Takes Home Double Gold

Tasters Guild recently held their 23rd Annual International Wine Judging in Grand Rapids, Michigan. I was immediately contacted by one of the judges about a specific wine. Knowing I am always on the hunt for inexpensive (under $10) bottles of wine, this judge had a wine for me to try. Turns out I had tried this particular wine from previous years but hearing that the 2009 varietal had received double gold from the judges sent me on a hunt to find it. I did, yesterday, at Trader Joes.

(picture courtesy of

2009 Sebeka Cabernet Pinotage ($5.99-$8.49)

This varietal is so rich in color I couldn't get sunlight to penetrate it. It started off as grape juice to the nose and then opened up to an aroma of blackberry and earth scents. On the palate it was a variety of black and red berries, dark cocoa and oak. It is very smooth and has a nice finish. This is a perfect blend... and it's under $10.

I could not be more pleased with this wine. I enjoyed it with the appetizers listed in the post below, chicken Alfredo and salad for dinner. and dark chocolate covered cranberries after the kids went to bed. It went well with all of them.

My "judge" friend just ordered 6 cases. Another friend of mine is thinking about using this bottle as her bridesmaid gifts along with an etched glass celebrating the occassion. I like that idea.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

It's Not a Party without the Melba Snacks

Embarrassingly (that's a word, right?) I spaced on the date yesterday and totally missed Cinco De Mayo. I didn't actually miss it. I was around and thinking about it all day. I was just without a Margarita and my munchies that I normally enjoy with neighbors and friends on our annual Cinco Happy Hour. I had to work. I totally forgot to request it off. Since Puddin Pop has Strep and was still in the contagious stage it's probably just as well. Who says you can't celebrate it late? We do it with Birthday's all the time.

It's a beautiful day. The sun is shining and I'm ready to have my Cinco party. Don't even care if anyone comes. My neighbor picked up my slack and had Margs ready yesterday. Not sure who's going to be ready for round 2. I also found a wine (Yes. You can drink wine for a Cinco celebration) that an inside source has revealed won Double Gold at a recent Wine Tasting. You'll have to wait for more information on that.

I have prepared a spicy black bean layer dip (with cream cheese, black olives and red onion) and found guacamole hummus at Trader Joe's that I knew would go wonderfully with Old London's Melba snacks. Especially the Spicy 3 Pepper ones. I love Melba Snacks for their flavor and stability. Nothing's worse than dipping a chip or cracker and having it break in the dip. I knew the Melba snacks would be perfect with the layer dip and no one will have to worry about digging for their lost piece.

Old London's site A Toast for Everyday Health, offers some very tasty recipes to make with Melba Snacks. I'm going to try the Atlantic Salmon Bites for our next Girl's Night In. They are also offering one Lucky Individual (and guest) a Once-In-A-Lifetime Experience in their Dance Your Way To Hollywood Contest.

Win a Vacation to Hollywood!
“Dance Your Way to Hollywood” will send one lucky winner and a guest to Tinseltown for a once-in-a-lifetime experience, including private dance lessons and tickets to watch the taping of a highly popular television show. The four-day, three-night, all-expenses-paid experience includes air travel and accommodations at a popular Hollywood hotel. Sweepstakes entries accepted March 17 through June 30, 2010

You better believe I entered. Now, I'm not a huge fan of watching others dance, but I secretly (*whispered*) wish I could dance. Maybe this is my chance.

So. (For those of you too far away to attend in person) Grab yourself some Melba Snacks. Make or purchase your favorite dip(s). Grab a Margarita or any other beverage (I'm trying to make this as user friendly as possible) and join me at 5pm (Eastern Time) for a belated Cinco De Mayo Celebration. We'll call it Thursday De Mayo.

I wrote this review while participating in a blog campaign by Mom Central on behalf of Old London Melba Toast and received a sample to facilitate my candid review. Mom Central sent me a gift card to thank me for taking the time to participate.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Teacher Appreciation Luncheon

I just got back from helping with the Teacher Appreciation Luncheon at Handsome's school. So the teachers could enjoy their lunch, four of us volunteered to "transport" the kids to and from the lunchroom. Seeing as Handsome is only in first grade and has taken his lunch all but one day last year I was really unaware of how the lunch line worked. Lucky for me, all the kids were very helpful and coached me along.

The choices for the k-2nd graders was nachos or ham sandwich with the choice of corn or rice. The kids are lined up with bag lunches first, then choice one (broken up by side one or side two) and the choice two (divided by sides as well). I am amazed at the amount of kids that get school lunch. I don't remember it being like that when I was a kid. Maybe 3 kids (and sometimes none) brought their lunches to school.

The older kids were given the first two choices and a 3rd choice of BBQ chicken. Some classes go to the bathroom on their way back from lunch and some do not. One class had "monitors" within the class and boy were they all quiet. I'm not sure how one gets picked to be a monitor but 5 of the 25 kids had bright pink index cards and a pen and were instructed to write down the names of any classmates they observed talking. These kids weren't too popular when I went to school and no one volunteered for the position. These kids were serious. Clicking their pens in the direction of those talking, ready to write at a moments notice. One little monitor had written down five names and had multiple check marks next to some. I think it was a special thing they did since the teacher wouldn't be with them. It worked.

After we were done we were treated to leftovers from the luncheon. Steak, Chicken, Shrimp, Salad and Baked Potatoes, courtesy of Outback. Yum. I'm pretty sure at some point someone decided I should be on the PTA board or at least a committee. Most the board members will be leaving within the next year or two as their children will move on to the middle school. I figure I have 8 years before both my kids get through. I should have kept that a secret. It was nice to meet some new people and discuss everything from the new school opening, the stopping of transportation, and kids who travel to play sports to more personal stuff like affordable life insurance quotes (Insurance Salesman in the group) End of Year PTA Party, and Parenting stuff in general. I'm really glad I volunteered and look forward to doing more next year.

Sleeping, Name Changing and Tragedy ~ What the Hell

Wednesdays can be fun. Especially if playing the What the Hell game with the Blue Monkey Butt sisters Elle and Stacy. They are funny and delightful and you should really head over and visit them before they get so popular that there's a line at the door. Just saying.

My husband was only awake for 6 hours yesterday. What the Hell is that? That man needs a job. I totally made him get up at 6:15 with Handsome. What was he going to say? Neither of them was happy about that. I slept 'til 8.

So now that I'm becoming friends with people through blogging, FB, Twitter and other social sites, and all those lines are getting crossed, I've decided I need to use a few less names. I will now only use "Rachele" (my real name) and "More Fun Mom" (from one of my blogs and my Twitter ID) because I'm too lazy to change that again.)) That should make it a little less confusing (for me too). I've also decided that Boog is getting a little old for his baby name so, what the hell, he will now be referred to as Handsome, 'cuz that's how I greet him each morning when he comes downstairs, and because Handsome doesn't get highlighted when I spellcheck.

I'm really tired of getting junk email about "the best diet pill " or "other pills" that aren't even really for me. What the Hell? Figure out your target audience people. It's not me.

I read this story on Monday and then follow up details became available on Tuesday. The story made me think, "What the Hell" and "Why the Hell". These kids seem to have been brought up right. They are (were) both athletes and appear to be good students. What went wrong? As a parent I need more answers. Shit like this scares the hell out of me. I'm am sorry that both sets of parents have to go through this. It's just tragic.

It's Cinco De Mayo and I have to work. We usually have a porch party for the nieghbors. What the Hell? Anyone want Margs on the 6th?

What the Hell is bothering YOU? Post about it and then link up....NOW!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

It's Been Sneakin' Up On Me

I'm a huge American Idol Fan. Have been since season 3. This year there have been mixed reviews on the talent and some have speculated that it's the worst season so far. I beg to disagree. Here and here are my early comments on the top 24

I started out routing for Crystal Bowersox and designated her as the winner. She is an amazing talent and I will listen to what ever she puts out. I love the sound and tone of her voice and envy the individual she is and the music she creates.

Big Mike is another of my favorites. He's the snugly Teddy Bear with the awesome pipes and can sing anything and make it sound good. His back story is touching and I appreciate everything he has done in the competition and think the judges made the absolute right choice in saving him.

Lee DeWyze is my new favorite to win! It's been creepin' up on me. We really didn't see a lot of him in the early stages and I was like "Who?" when they announced the final 24. He was shy, lacked confidence, but still belted it out every week. I think I'm crushing on him a little and would love to see him win.

Any input?

Broken Heart, Chicken Minis and some Beading


A friend of mine lost her husband to cancer early this morning and it saddens me to imagine what she is going through. We're only friends through facebook but getting that e-mail this morning broke my heart a little. Is that strange?

Still looking into a life insurance online quote. Hubster needs it too now that he is currently un-employed. We also discussed weather or not we needed to get the cobra coverage for health insurance since (we thought) he would be starting a new job within the month. It's been 5 weeks with no start date in sight. 3 visits to the pediatrician, 2 emergency room visits and a visit to an orthopedic and we're damn glad we opted to get it.

We had Puddin Pop's Birthday Party over the weekend at Chick-Fil-A, her favorite place. I ordered party platters to feed all the guests. If you haven't tried the chicken need to. It's a single nugget in a mini biscuit brushed with honey butter. So delicious. I'm not sure if it's on the breakfast menu because we usually only go for lunch or dinner but I would encourage everyone who has a Chick-Fil-A near to get their hands on some. You won't be disappointed.

Puddin Pop and I spent some time beading together last night. She got a kit for her birthday and I broke out my beads that I have had packed up for over a year. I got the bug again so we'll be doing more today. She is making some pretty bracelets...all on her own.

That's my random for this Tuesday. Make sure you head over to The Un Mom to link up and read some more random posts.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Tropicana Juicy Rewards ~ Deal(s) of the Day

If you are not already collecting Juicy Rewards off the Tropicana tops you are missing out. We've used points for $5 worth of tokens at Chuck E Cheese (twice) and for buy one get one tickets at the Living museum where the kids can get up close with all sorts of animals and marine life.

Each day Tropicana lists a Deal of the Day. With things like discounted movie tickets through Fandango to their latest offer of the chance to win $1000. I spent 3 points on that. They are giving away a total of $24,000. Wish me luck? Right now you can get $15 off any purchase over $49.99 at 1-800-Flowers. Just in time for Mother's Day. Of course you have to have points. It's as easy as logging in and entering the code from the tops of the juice you're already buying. You are buying Tropicana, right?

I was guilty of buying the "sweeter"-not-really-juice for the kids and decided to switch because it's better for them and I like REAL orange juice. It tasted funny to them at first (my fault) so I used a little trick my dad used with us. I added a splash of grenadine. It adds a little sweetness and makes for a "really cool looking" (Handsome's words) morning beverage. Try it.

Rewards range from discounts on Family activities to outdoor apparel and supplies. I'm really hoping they come out with a deal on outdoor chair cushions . I'd totally spend all my points on that. They really have something for everyone and the lists keep growing. Check it out.

I am part of the Mom Central Juicy Insiders and have received Juicy Reward points and a gift card for my time on this project.