Saturday, May 30, 2009

Weekend Update...Buzz Off Bee!

Sunday & Monday....We pretty much just hung around the house all weekend. Calvin smoked some wonderful chicken breast and thighs and I did my juice fast (lost 3 pounds). Aunt Faith arrived and we had a nice chat.

Wednesday....The kids' and I went to Lowes because we needed some more stuff to plant because Mommy bought too much potting soil. Alex and Mallory picked out their own flowers and potted them. They did a fabulous job! We also planted strawberry plants and they are already blooming. Many of our herb seeds are coming up and our radishes are growing strong.

We also went to the grocery store and Mallory disrupted a group field trip for a bunch of Mentally Challenged folks. She wanted to push the child sized cart first and it was not her turn so she threw the mother of all tantrum at the front doors right as these people were entering the store. There was mass chaos as they all freaked out over the ear piercing screams of my child and were herded back out the door.

Thursday....Lazy day of laundry and cleaning. When Calvin got home we ran to Subway, got a couple sandwiches and took them to the park. Mallory is suddenly afraid of heights and Alex was a super's like some kind of Freaky Thursday phenomenon.

Friday...the kids tried to play outside but it was too hot for Mallory. Alex rode this ride-on thing that has no steering; back and forth across the cement until he ran out of shade. I figured out that having the Recession Garden so close to the backdoor has some drawbacks....because all of these flying bugs keep coming into the house and I freak out and chase them out with a broom. A GIANT BEE came in and I was panic stricken! It's buzz was soooo loud!

When Calvin got home we went on a little shopping trip to Target. Calvin needed swim trunks and the kids needed swim diapers and plastic pants for swimming lessons. Poor hubby. He has never purchased, much less tried on clothing in a box store and it was quite a shock for him. He's used to the attentiveness of the Men's Warehouse employees and didn't appreciate trying on his outfits in a topless box in the middle of the store with 15 other people. I think he felt just a little bit dirty when we left.

Finding swim diapers for our giant boy was....a challenge. Apparently they only make them to 37lbs size and my 3 year old is 44 pounds. The Swimming Pool requires swim diapers AND plastic pants. We also couldn't find the correct sized pants. We bought the largest sizes of both...hoping for the best.

Saturday...We had our first swimming lesson this morning. I was really nervous about having to wear a swimming suit....but Alex saved me from anyone staring paying attention to me. You see, my three year old that looks like he should be in the PRESCHOOL swimming class because he is a giant....screamed and cried for most of the class. Lucky for me, Calvin was his handler for the class and he got to deal with it. Mallory and I moved as far from them as we could and acted like we didn't know them. I feel really bad for all of those parents of INFANTS in our class that were video taping their child's first swim experience because they now have audio of my kid screaming his freakin head off. As for the lesson, 10 minutes into class they instructed me to blow in my daughter's mouth and dunk her under the water. Wanna know how that went over?
Does this answer your question?

And after I did it the third time...she looked at me and in her best Linda Blair impression said, 'GET ME OUT OF HERE!' As luck would have was almost time to leave because if I had sung 'the wheels on the bus' one more time; her head would have spun around.

My thighs and shins are killing me from 40 minutes water aerobics....I can hardly walk! I'm going to have thighs of steel by July!

Friday, May 29, 2009

Believe...and You'll See

I'm a firm believer that all things happen for a reason. Even the bad things.

I sometimes regret that I didn't meet Calvin sooner and that we didn't start our lives together at an earlier age. But we wouldn't have been in the same places at the same time if things hadn't happened the way they did.

I feel that way about Utah.

I knew the Lord brought us here for a reason. Calvin has been challenged at work for a reason. And that reason is so that he could gain the experience to continue in this field. To make more contacts and be prepared to move on....somewhere else.

My chance meeting with Monica in a hallway at the Comfort Inn was not by chance. God planned it so that we would become friends and support one another during this trying time.

And Brother Horton....yes, he has a purpose too. To teach me to say NO!

I know that living away from family has brought Calvin and I closer together and that we are a better family for it. We have to depend on each other more than we would have if we were still living in Denver.

I wanted to live in a new place and I did. That's not to say that there aren't other places I wouldn't love to live and experience but I'm ready to go home.

My Aunt Faith was here on her way to Montana on Wednesday and we talked about our plans for the future (she also wants to move to Colorado). Before she left, she prayed with me that the Lord would provide an opportunity in Colorado so that we could go home.

Of course, everything hinges on a job. Either trying to keep the one he has and staying here with frequent visits to Colorado or finding one there. The situation with Calvin's job shows no signs of improvement so I picked up the pace on my plan to get us home and I was becoming frustrated. I could feel the panic beginning to take hold of my heart and it didn't feel good.

Then yesterday, I saw a tweet from @MillionMommyND that immediately changed my attitude and calmed me:

Seeing is believeing...NOT. Believe and then you'll see!

You may also know that I believe in signs and fate and kismet! I didn't want to get out of bed this morning for my walk but I wanted to talk to Jesus and that is my best time to clear my head of things that are bothering me.

I was just telling him that I was putting this all in hands because I needed help when a song came on my iPod that was a sign from God! I was so inspired that I ran for 75 feet! Believe! and you'll See the SIGN!

Gotta make a move to a
Town that's right for me
Town to keep me movin'
Keep me groovin' with some energy

Well, I talk about it
Talk about it
Talk about it
Talk about it
Talk about, Talk about
Talk about movin

Gotta move on
Gotta move on
Gotta move on

Won't you take me to
Won't you take me to
Won't you take me to
Won't you take me to

On a side note....Sego Lily Spa did not pick me to be a finalist in their blogging contest. I'm disappointed but I know that this also happened for a reason....and it's the reason why I can't live here anymore.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Martha Talked To Me on Twitter!

You all know that I'm obsessed crazy about Martha Stewart right? And I love to read her tweets on Twitter. When I see her adorable face pop up on TweetDeck I get all excited because she is obviously tweeting right TO ME! Unfortunately, she is so popular that she can't @ everyone that talks to her. If you look at her twitter stream you will see it is all her tweeting without responding. Just imagine @connieaw before all of her messages. K?

I little bit ago....she tweeted this:

I was shocked by this bit of information. Martha uses a crackberry and not an iPhone? How could this be? I just assumed that she was as cool and hip as me. I suddenly felt like I had one up on Martha and went strutting around my house carrying my iPhone like a Peacock fanning her tail feathers! So...I tweeted this:

Leave it to Martha to put me in my place. Now I feel like a simpleton and have a uncontrollable urge to run to Best Buy with my husband's credit card and make this right.

I just looked to see what a g10's a Canon camera. She can keep her g10 because I have a Canon Rebel that I like very much. I just need a Kindle.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

The Bachelorette~ The Man Code

Is it just me...or does something not seem right about this season of The Bachelorette? I am not feeling the love from any of them but maybe it's just too soon.

The very first words in my notes say...David is an A-hole. I really just want to reach through the TV and smack his face. His mouth is irritating me so much and I'm realizing that last week's shy, loss for words incident was all an act because this guy is cocky and has too much to say.

Jillian throws a pool party and invites 8 of the guys. Mike...sneaks off with her and ends up in her bedroom. He hangs off the balcony like Michael Jackson's baby; taunting the guys. Jill admits that there is something she finds sexy ABOAT him and then she leaves him half naked in her room expecting to receive a rose. That had to hurt.

The boys found out that Jillian had left the building and they were supposed to go chase her down in a Mini Cooper. I really liked this part of the show because I love watching men completely lose their shit minds on national television. Mike and Tanner were acting like complete nut jobs and if Joel McHale doesn't add this clip to his show this week I will be surprised.

They all finally find the map in the glove box, follow the clues, change into tuxes, pick up a million dollar necklace and find Jillian. The winners are Brad and Wes. Brad was the brains behind this operation and he is pissed when Jill decides to share dinner with Wes instead of him. I found the dinner to be awkward and I didn't feel like these two had any chemistry. I think Wes might be here to sell a record. She gives Wes a rose.

Jake is chosen for the One on One date with Jillian and she picks him up in a purple convertible. He asks her if she is a good driver and she says, 'No, I'm a woman.' Jill....come on! Some of us are AWESOME drivers. Maybe you should have went with , 'No, I'm Canadian!' She is dressed in the most adorable black fringe dress and red knee high boots. She takes Jake to get a cowboy makeover and he ends up in a ridiculous black shirt with white scrolling on it. But holy AB'S batman...Jake is built!

They go to a private club where they talk, laugh and seem to have a really good time together and then Martina McBride comes out to sing a couple songs while they dance. Jill is surprised that Jake dances so well but DUH...he lives in Dallas....I'm sure it is a prerequisite to becoming a citizen of the great state of Texas. Jake scores a rose!

The 2nd group date is with Jesse, Mark, David, Mike, Simon, Kiptyn, and Juan. They go to the beach to play basketball. They are all having a jolly good time until the Harlem Globetrotters show up and make them look like little girls. The Globetrotters pick David as a good match for Jill and I throw up in my mouth a little. They are all relaxing watching the sunset when Mike comes running down the sand in his speedo and jumps into the ocean. He is WHITE as a ghost from the waist to his knees and I'm sorry to say but there was a lot of room in the front of his suit if you catch my drift. Jill feels sorry for him and he receives the first Pity Rose of the show.

It's time for the Pre-Rose Ceremony Cocktail Party and Tanner P starts off the night by examining Jillian's feet in open toed shoes. He is so excited about her choice in footwear that he starts to get all shaky and drooly. She seems a little uncomfortable and escapes goes off to talk to some other fellows.

Jesse tells Jillian that he turned down a 5 month trip to Italy to be on the show. Is he crazy? Robby makes her a drink called the ROZMO (half Rob/half Cosmo) and tries to talk to her but Wes steals her away.

Chris Harrison comes in and tells everyone that they must vote for the man they want to leave the house. Much himming and hawwing ensues and the guys don't know what what to do. Many agree that they don't like Juan.

Suddenly, Brian can't take the pressure anymore and he brings everyone out to the pool area and strips down to his light switch and jumps into the pool. Jillian is shocked and by the look on her face...a little amused at the size of his light switch.

The results of the voting are announced and the winners losers are...
3rd most votes....Julian
2nd most votes...David
The most votes...Juan
Chris Harrison says that Jillian has veto power and can give Juan a rose right now....or he must leave the party immediately! You know exactly what she does right? She gives him the PITY ROSE! It appears the new Jillian twist to this season is that she will give a couple Pity Roses each week. At this rate, she is going to end up married to the guy that she most pities...not the guy she most loves.

The Most Boring Rose Ceremony ever ends with 12 more guys getting roses.

David~27 Trucking Contractor from Ohio
*First Impression Rose, picked by Globetrotters as match for Jill, keeper of the Man Code, wants to tie Juan to a tree and beat him

Jake~ 31 Airline Pilot from Dallas
*gave her wings, first One on One Date, ABS of steel

Jesse~27 Wine Maker from California
*turned down Italy for Jill

Wes~32 Country Music Singer from Austin
*singing guy, winner of race & dinner

Michael~25 Break Dance Instructor from New York

Robby~25 Bartender from Houston
*made her a ROZMO

Ed~29 IT Consultant from Chicago

Reid~ 30 Realtor from Philly

Kiptyn~ 31 General Contractor from California

Mike~28 Baseball Camp Owner from NY
*good catch guy

Sasha~ 27 Oil and Gas Guy from Houston

Tanner P. ~ 30 Financial Analyst from Dallas
*foot fetish guy, loves open toed shoes

Mark~ 26 Pizza guy from Denver

Brad~27 Financial Advisor from Chicago
*co-winner of race

Tanner F. ~28 Sales Rep from Denver

Juan~35 General Contractor from California
*brought her wine, most hated man in house, dumps out his shots

And now for the guys she didn't keep.....Julien, Simon, Mathue and Brian.

You remember Brian...he is the dude that striped neeked and jumped in the pool during the cocktail party. His closing comment was that she might not have picked him because he was hung like a light switch and it was chilly out. I'm sure that David would agree that it states in Man Code that one doesn't unleash their manhood in temperature below 85 degrees. And then there is the issue of SHRINKAGE. He obviously doesn't know the first rule of Man Code...if you are hung like a Light switch then for goodness sake....Keep The Lights Off!

David better get a copy of The Man Code out to everyone of those guys ASAP!

On a scale from Zero to Bilbro....I rate this episode a 5.

Monday, May 25, 2009

What I'm Afraid Of...EDITED

You know those email quizzes that ask you a bunch of questions like what is your favorite color and where is your cell phone? The questions are mostly regular everyday stuff but sometimes they contain a question that I don't like to answer.

What are you afraid of?

I usually try to go for the obvious like spiders, snakes and Donald Trump. But really, what I'm the most afraid of is something happening to my kids. I pray every single day that they will be safe and healthy. Calvin and I talk about it often, since his family lost his brother at a young age. He says that for a long time he didn't want to have kids because he was afraid of someday losing them. I'm so glad he changed his mind.

I saw a tweet from my new blogging friend Beth at Manic Mother a few days ago that she was at the hospital waiting on blood test results for her 2 year old son. He had been bitten by a venomous spider a few days before so I thought it was related to that.

I checked her blog this morning and discovered that her baby has been diagnosed with Childhood Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. He is starting chemo today.

Please say a prayer for Ezra. And keep Beth in your thoughts....let's lift her up today and give her the strength to get through this.

Beth has posted more details about their situation....and it's not good. They need financial help. If you have a couple dollars to spare...please help this family. Go HERE and look for her paypal button.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Weekend Update...Scooby Snack Mutiny

Sunday...planted our Recession Garden. For details on what we planted click HERE. The kids are so excited to see what is in the dirt and I have given steen warnings not to touch or pull out any of the plants. They are super scared of the dirt nazi (that would be me).

Monday...laundry, laundry, laundy! And Mallory decided to sop up a puddle with her clothes. This girl loves a good puddle! The kids were so excited to water the Recession Garden and did a great job of sharing the watering can.

Tuesday...spent the day anxious about the Unplugging I was about to do. Soaked in as much internet, twitter and facebook as I could. Kids wouldn't take a nap and I thought about running away from home. We ate Subway at the park for dinner.

Wednesday....Unplugged! Looking back on our was very nice to not have the distraction of the computer and the TV. We read more books and I felt calmer. We had a great time at the Ogden Nature Center and we are looking forward to many more visits there.

Note to self: Always watch where you are walking at the NATURE park. You might find more nature than you bargained for and STEP in it.

Thursday...Alex decided it was 80's day and was channelling Jen Lancaster! Doesn't he look adorable? He even brought out the teen angst just for me. I found out that my friend Loralee had her baby on Tuesday night! Yay Aaron is here!

Friday...another beautiful day in northern Utah! The kids are bored with watering the garden. I see no puppies in our future. Mutiny ensues when it is revealed that we are out of Scooby Snacks*. We drove to Layton to meet Calvin and had dinner at Red Robin. Then Mommy escaped for some retail therapy and grocery shopping and the kids and Daddy went to the park. Have you been to TJ Maxx lately? I got a super cute green straw handbag for summer, some sunglasses, a pair of underwear and a crystal goblet! It's almost as awesome as TARGET!

Saturday...In an effort to jump start my weight loss (which has been very slow) I am doing a juice fast today and a colon cleanse tomorrow. I had to laugh when I went to the healthy food store and the cashier's comment about my supplies was *brace yourself*! Now I'm scared shitless to death. I'm mostly worried about the sugar and caffeine withdrawals that I'm about to experience. Wish me luck!

Potty Training Update: In the words of Alex....Never, never, never!

Job Update: We have heard nothing from the Denver company. I'm bummed....but also frustrated because the cost of living (housing) is so much more in Denver than Utah and we would have to downsize considerably. I don't want to move to Denver and not be able to afford the lifestyle that I want to live there. Does that make sense?

Here is the backyard tree that I told you about a few weeks ago!

*Scooby Snacks...little gummy fruit snacks that the kids are addicted to.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Being in the Moment

I have to tell you that I was a little anxious going into this challenge. A large part of my day is spent on the computer/iPhone and I depend on them to provide me with entertainment, news, information and a CLOCK!

I realized this morning that I haven't worn a watch in years because I check the time on my cell phone which is always attached to me. I also realized that I run to GOOGLE a million times a day when random thoughts pop into my head.

I also check the weather and news from the computer. I felt out of touch.

I started my day by sitting down on the couch with my cold brewed Iced Coffee and my Jen Lancaster book Bright Lights, Big Ass and I read for about 20 minutes until my darling son woke up. He immediately asked for a show and I told him we weren't turning the TV on today. He thought I lost my mind. We put together a puzzle. Then we read books until his sister got up. Then we read more books after breakfast.

Finally it was time to head out to our activity for the day. Ogden Nature Center! We had a great time with our friends and saw birds and Deer and some turkeys. I am still trying to find an exercise calculator that will tell me how many calories you burn carrying a 23 pound toddler through the woods with a 45 pound Preschooler attached to your leg. Check out our photo's not very long.

Click to play this Smilebox slideshow: Ogden Nature Center May
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Kids were tuckered out and took a good two hour nap and I cleaned the kitchen and read my book. Then....things went terribly wrong. Children woke up cranky and started fighting with each other. There was lots of crying...mostly from me.

At 5:10pm, I remembered that Calvin said he was going to be very late coming home. At 5:11pm, I made popcorn chicken for Mallory and poured myself a glass of wine and got into my new comfy pink jammies and slippers. At 5:19pm, I turned on the TV and went back to reading my book.

Lesson learned: I do need to cut back on my time on the computer. There are many other things I need to and would like to be doing. But I can't cut it out completely. It was nice to have a break and focus on the kids....that is where my main focus should be. I am a doer and I thrive on being busy but I need to take the time to be in the moment more.

And man! I missed my friends!

I'm Unplugged!

Today is the day! I'm unplugged from all my electronic devices for the entire day! No computer, twitter, facebook and television. I am also going to unplug my washer and dryer!

I will be leaving my phone on. I don't have a land it will be on for hubby to call me and tell me he's coming home from work. And for emergencies. But I won't be accessing the internet from it. And no texting.

Instead, the kids and I have plans to meet our friends Monica, William and Kate at the Nature Center and we will plant some flowers and we will play! During nap time, I will read and work on my Vision Board. I can't wait to see how we do without all of these things that we depend on but probably spend too much time on.

I told Calvin about this challenge and he rolled his eyes at me. I tried to explain to him that my *friends* on my blogs, twitter and facebook are like my co-workers. You all are the people that I talk with and that most times help get me through another monotonous day. If it wasn't for the internet...I wouldn't have any adult interaction. It is a lifeline for me and I love it. But it is possible to have too much of a good thing and I realize that.

Ironically, Oprah is doing a show about living without TV, Internet and Cell Phone. I won't be watching it...until tomorrow!

Tomorrow....I will be back with pictures of our day!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

The Bachelorette ~ Get The Party Started!

I have been waiting oh so patiently for The Bachelorette: Jillian Harris Edition to premiere. Even my husband (who swears every single season that he is not going to watch this trainwreck show) was asking me when it was going to start.

A few months ago, I even did a post on my shopping blog about what I would wear if I were Jillian. I was thrilled when they showed her going shopping for her wardrobe! What a lucky girl!

I had the best of intentions for preparing to blog about this season of The Bachelorette. I was going to take notes and rewind lots of it to get quotes and I was going to drink wine! The first thing I did was trade my wine for an ice cream sandwich which kind of killed the mood for me. Then, as the guys were going introduced...I didn't like any of them. Except maybe that one guy that says he lives in Denver. But I only liked him because he lives in Denver. And the Billbro guy (real name GREG) was totally grossing me out! I almost threw up. And then the guy....the one that called her HOT TUB HARRIS! I would have sent his ass packing immediately!

Did you catch the breakdancing faceoff? I was kind of impressed that these guys could pull off these moves in their sunday best and that Jillian kicked off her shoes and tried to learn a few steps!

The show finally got exciting for me when the Fabulous Five walked in! Oh a twist! I do love me a good Chris Harrison Twist! The newcomers are Ed, Bryce, Reid, Tanner P, and Mike. I loved that Mike threw her a baseball and said, 'You are a good catch!' Totally loved that!

I was curious about why she kept Simon from England because the guy needed subtitles! How much fun will their conversations be? It was sweet that he wanted to make her a spot of tea....but I never did see her talk with him. Maybe the subtitle translator was tired from the introductions.

I have to comment about the First Impression Rose. My understanding is that you give it the person that most impressed you. Someone that stood out. Not the guy that froze up and couldn't speak. It's not called the Pity Rose!

During the rose ceremony....I couldn't help but laugh at Stephen (the lawyer from New York City) because his face was hilarious! He was obviously upset that he wasn't getting a rose and on his way out the door to the limo said that Jillian must not like AWESOME guys! LOL! Here is who she kept:

Dave~27 Trucking Contractor from Ohio *First Impression Rose
Jake~ 31 Airline Pilot from Dallas *gave her wings
Jesse~27 Wine Maker from California
Wes~32 Country Music Singer from Austin *singing guy
Mathue~ 26 Personal Trainer from Wichita
Michael~25 Break Dance Instructor from New York
Robby~25 Bartender from Houston
Ed~29 IT Consultant from Chicago
Reid~ 30 Realtor from Philly
Simon~ 26 Soccer Coach from England *thick accent guy
Kiptyn~ 31 General Contractor from California
Mike~28 Baseball Camp Owner from NY *good catch guy
Brian~ 32 IT Consultant from Atlanta
Sasha~ 27 Oil and Gas Guy from Houston
Julien~34 Restauranteur from San Diego
Tanner P. ~ 30 Financial Analyst from Dallas *foot fetish guy
Mark~ 26 Pizza guy from Denver
Brad~27 Financial Advisor from Chicago
Tanner F. ~28 Sales Rep from Denver
Juan~35 General Contractor from California *brought her wine

If you would like to read more posts or link to your post about this on over to Mama Kat's.

Love & Sunshine

I like to do little things for people. I like to send cards, packages and get gifts for people....even when it's not their birthday or christmas. I love to send handwritten notes & cards to my friends and family and finding just the right gift for them. In this fast paced world we live in, sometimes it is so nice to receive a little something in the mail that you weren't expecting. It is so easy to do everything by email...the art of letter writing is all but gone!

Just last week....the kids' got letters in the mail from their Nana. They were so excited and Mallory wouldn't even let me read her's to her for a while. She was reading it to herself and when I asked what it said she told me, 'Mally Mally Mally Nana Nana Mally'. This is the same girl that pulled the Twilight book off my book shelf yesterday and was trying to read it. She amazes me.

A couple months ago my friend Denise at EatPlayLove had a post about Paying It Forward, she wanted to spread some sunshine! I'm all about the sunshine! In fact my favorite song of all time, the one that reminds me of Colorado and that I want played at my Funeral is Sunshine on my Shoulders by John Denver.

Last week I received my package of sunshine in the mail from Denise! She sent me a Body & Soul Magazine and a mixed CD of awesome music. It came at the most perfect time (at the end of a frustrating day) and lifted my spirits. The next day when I listened to the CD she made for me I was reminded of my special friendship with this wonderful woman. I felt so loved and happy!

So here is the deal...the first three people to comment on this post will receive a special package full of Love & Sunshine sometime this year. The winners in turn will need to post their own "pay it forward" for their readers and then they will post and the general loving project will grow and grow!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Weekend Update...Manic Housewife

Saturday & Sunday...What a great weekend! The kids got to spend lots of time with Nana, Poopa, AnJew and Bobert! The kids did great in the car (thanks to the in car entertainment system) and we came home all excited to try to find a job in Denver.

Monday...Calvin sent off a resume! I started packing and looking for a house. Already, you say? Yes. Already. This is how I roll! I'm motivated and excited. Thank god we don't have more boxes or half the house would be packed by now. Decide liquor cabinet needs decluttering and have a couple drinks in the middle of the day. Basil is coming up nicely.

Tuesday...A more detailed resume is requested from Calvin. I called the Moving company, cancelled my newspaper subscription and the plans for my recession garden. Got an awesome package in the mail from Denise at EatPlayLove. Mallory learned her ABC's and wants to me to Sing ON* Her all day long.

Wednesday...Trash Day! Failed to win the Colorado Lottery so I throw away half of our belongings when I realize that the housing market in Denver is out of control overpriced and we will only be able to afford a 2 bedroom townhouse. I made Apple Peanut Butter Sandwiches that were a huge hit.

Thursday...I realize I packed my underwear. Decide to buy new undergarments at Target the next day instead of unpacking it. Don't want to send the wrong message to the universe. Start working on my Vision Board. Make an Executive decision not to shop for food so that we don't have to throw anything out when we move. Kids have been eating lots of eggs, cereal, Spam and expired juice boxes. I unearth a package of mystery meat from the freezer and the kids immediately start making me a grocery list. We order pizza and Alex answers the door without his pants on. I am now THAT Mom.
Mallory wrote down what Alex said we needed

Friday....I text Calvin every 30 minutes asking if he has heard anything about the job. He eventually turns off his phone. Me and the kids go on our first outing to Target alone. Alex walks with me nicely through the entire store until we get to the bakery and he sees the Donut case. Throws huge freaking tantrum on the floor until a super nice Mom with 5 kids enlightens me to the FREE COOKIE stand! God.Bless.Her! Stop at Mc Donald's for crack Iced Coffee and find out they are marketing to children now. Mallory cheers!

Saturday...Weeded stupid flower bed in front yard and vow not to plant another f**king thing there because I can't keep up with the weeds. Buy some storage containers at Wal-Mart so I can continue packing organizing. Meet my friend Monica at the nursery to buy a couple tomato plants for now defunct Recession Garden and decide to plant an Artichoke plant in the front flower bed because it will grow 6 feet tall and 4 feet wide. F**k You Weeds! Stop at liquor store and buys lots of wine.....

Potty Training Update. The plan to reward the boy with pieces of Thomas the Train crap has failed miserable. He refuses to go potty and when I ask him if he wants {insert Train Name here} he tells me that he has enough train stuff. So....a new shirt is being made.

Will NOT Poop For Thomas

* Mallory says Sing ON Me instead of Sing WITH me! It's so stinkin cute!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Summer Passports

I love blank notebooks. I have them all over the place with little lists in them. And I love my journals.....always on the lookout for the next one I will fill with my life story.

So the other day, I had an idea that I wanted to find two little notebooks with hard covers that would serve as a Summer Passport for the kids to document where we have gone and things we have done. You know I love to chronicle our lives and reminiscing is so much fun!

I had planned to go to Target and find the perfect notebooks and decorate them. But I never made it to Target (not even when I was in Denver) and I really wanted to get started so I did what I always do when I need something special and creative....I went to Etsy.

I was so excited when I came across these awesome travel journals that have a passport cover.
It contains 40 blank pages and each cover has an inner pocket for stashing paper bits, flat souvenirs, or ticket stubs. The title pages are covered in fabulous airmail stripes, and five reproduction vintage-styled travel tags are included to get you started. ~quoted from Spacedogs Studios

All of this for only $11! Perfect!

I can't wait to start filling these will all of our adventures, outings and trips! And I hope someday they will enjoy looking at them and remembering what fun we had together!

EDITED: I did get 2 of these....a red one for Alex and a pink one for Mallory.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Manic Martha: Cereal Postcards

Manic Mother

It's time for another Manic Martha Moment with Manic Mother! Today I am pulling a craft idea from the archives. Last August, I became Manic and Panicked that the summer was passing us by and we hadn't done much of anything. I concocted something I called, Fun Extravaganza and we did fun crafts and activities for a couple of weeks until I burned myself out. LOL! Click HERE to see all of the stuff we did.

We love to send (and receive) Mail so I made some postcards from cereal and other boxes. Alex and Mallory colored on the back....we love sharing our artwork with our family!

All you need to do for this one is cut your cereal/pizza/snack boxes into 4 inch by 6 inch rectangles and with a Sharpie marker, draw a line down the center on the blank side. Draw a picture or write a message on the left hand side and the address of your recipient on the other side. And a post card stamp is only .28 cents!

By the way, did you know that postage went up 2 Cents yesterday? It now costs .44 cents to mail a letter!

I bought Martha Stewart's Encyclopedia of Crafts last week. I like a lot of the ideas in the book but most of them fall under the category of things I'll probably never make. However, my taste in crafts tends to change every couple years and I always keep my Martha Books so I could end up making some of them. It also makes an excellent door stop!

EDITED: My sister spent the night with Jen Lancaster. Go HERE to check it out. I'm so jealous!!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Who Says You Can't Go Home?

Have you ever been somewhere....and felt like you were exactly where you were supposed to be? A place where you can feel the energy and your body responds to it in a positive way? I suppose I feel a little like Jack from LOST and Denver is my Island.

I drove past our old house on Saturday. I do this every time I visit Denver but I never photograph the house because it looks so different....the big trees in the front yard are gone and there are now shutters and flower beds. I drove around to the park behind the house and I sat in front of the playground. When I was pregnant with Alex, we would walk around this park at night and I would imagine how much time I would be spending here with my children.

I plucked a sprig of Lilac and headed to breakfast with Denise from Eat Play Love at Blue Sky Cafe. I love meeting blogging friends and she is fabulous! Our conversation was fast and covered many topics. It felt like I was chatting with an old friend....not someone I had just met for the first time. We talked about my desire to move back and she encouraged me to do what I need to do to make that happen. We also came up with a Twitter Name for Calvin. NitNots!*
I'm so upset that I forgot to get a picture with Denise!

We visited a couple toy stores in our quest for Potty Training bribes materials for Alex. The plan is to give him a piece of track for each successful PEE and a train/bridge for each POO. I'm having a shirt made for him...


My concern is that he will be so conditioned to receiving a toy for each potty experience that he will only potty at Toys R Us! DOOD! That's a 30 minute drive each time the kid has to crap!

We ate an awesome Sushi lunch at Mikuni in the Park Meadows Mall and the kids sat at the Sushi Bar for the first time. I stuffed myself and developed a small crush on my Sushi Master Jimmy. But isn't he adorable?

I couldn't wait for my date with Calvin! We saw David Copperfield at our favorite venue. The Buell Theater in beautiful Downtown Denver! Imagine our surprise when we drove up to our favorite parking lot and there is now a high rise building going up there! We had great seats and we made out like teenagers. David was already working his magic....

Calvin was looking at the playbill and there was an ad for WICKED and he said of all of the shows we have seen he would love to see that one again and I said, 'you really want to see it again'? and he said Yes and I said when is it going to be in Denver? He looked and saw October...the same time I have a trip planned for his birthday and he figured out that I had bought tickets! I'm so glad because I SUCK at keeping secrets!

The show was wonderful and I was hit in the head with David Copperfield's Balls! It is an amazing show! We walked along the 16th Street Mall to our favorite restaurant...Gumbo's! It was a beautiful night and we held hands and talked about some of our favorite times. We enjoyed a delicious meal and a couple glasses of wine and we talked about our future.....we both got tears in our eyes as we discussed how much we wanted to be back in Colorado and how happy we are with our kids.

And then the super models walked in. It was Prom Night in Denver and a group of teens were there for dinner. The girls were all tall, thin and tan! Wearing slinky gowns and tons of make up. Then I had a Oatmeal Cookie Martini.**

see how happy Calvin is to be in Denver?

We walked back to our car and pasted our favorite hotel. We thought about sneaking in for a quickie....
And this is when it hit me. This is where our story really began...this is where we fell in love and this is where we belong.

I am now on a get us back Denver!

*NitNots is the dull character from Imagination Movers that doesn't like things to get too exciting.

**Oatmeal Cookie...Jagermeister, Cinnamon Schnapps, Baileys, Butterscotch Schnapps.Shaken and served with a Cinnamon Sugar Rim

this song came on as we drove back to my in laws house Saturday night.....

Oh my Candida
We could make it together
The further from here girl the better
Where the air is fresh and clean
Oh my Candida
Just take my hand and I'll lead ya
I promise that life will be sweeter
'Cause it said so in my dreams
The future looks bright
The gypsy told me so last night
Said she saw our children playing in the sunshine
And there were you and I
In a house, Baby
No lie
And all these things were yours
And they were mine
Oh my Candida

Candida...Tony Orlando & Dawn

Friday, May 8, 2009

Weekend Update...Milestones

Sunday...My gosh I had to rest!

Monday' s are always good for preparing for the week. It was a lovely day so I left the back door open and let some air in....and a giant bug that I STILL can't find. I put on my hat, in case it was to fly into my hair and then I couldn't see up to where it might be. I decided that ignorance is bliss. You know how we had lots of rain over the weekend? I somehow forgot about that and let the kids out to the mud! My inner Kate Gosselin was all freaked out and we had to have bath time at 4:30pm and Mallory was mad at me because she thought she had to go to bed. Ever give a cat a bath? Ever give a 22 pound cat a bath? That's what it was like! When Calvin got home he had a heart to heart talk with Alex and they made a decision to take down the crib. Mommy cried.

Tuesday is when all the action seems to happen! We made a trip to Wal-Mart and Alex helped me remember what we were shopping for. He is sure becoming helpful! We decided to do a little craft project that required Glow In The Dark Paint. We have made a little tent with a sheet over the top half of Alex's big boy bed and we thought it would look cool with some stars painted on it. We also needed some more jammies for the little boy that is growing faster than weeds! He picked out a lovely Minnie Mouse NIGHTGOWN but I talked him into the Thomas PJ's. We came home, painted the sheet and then I decided to really get crazy and I got out the poster paints that we bought the kids for Christmas. They had a blast! And then Mallory, covered in paint...took off running up the stairs leaving a trail of green in her path!

Here is Mallory celebrating Jen Lancaster Day.

Wednesday I got the brilliant idea that I should try working out while the kids play in the basement. My home Gym IS in the kids' playroom afterall. It worked out great! I only had to jump off the elliptical a couple times to break up fights and I now have no excuse whatsoever to exercise. I should start shrinking any day now....

Thursday is a super busy day! We are getting ready for our trip to Denver, leaving early Friday morning. I asked the kids to pack a cloth shopping bag with toys they wanted to bring to Nana's house. Mallory was the first to return with her contained books and the coffee mug from her play kitchen. That's what I'm bringing too! Books and Coffee! Gosh I love this kid. Alex returned soon after with a building from his Thomas Train, Sam and some wooden blocks. I asked if this was all he was bringing and he said YEP. I said, 'what about some track?' Oh yeah he said and ran off. He returned with TWO pieces of track. Then I asked about trains. Oh yeah and off again. Then I said 'what about cars Alex, do you need any cars?' Oh yeah! He was channeling Steve was hilarious!

Friday, we are on our way.....see you on Monday!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Time in a Bottle

I'm going to do something wild and crazy that I've been thinking about for a while now. I'm going to UNPLUG. Let me explain.....

I spend a lot of time online. I blog and read blogs, I twitter and facebook. I love interacting with other mom's on the internet and I frequently spend time researching recipes and crafts and I could spend a whole day on Etsy! My iPhone is never far from my reach and I feel lost when it is plugged in recharging. The other day...I went to Lowe's and realized I had left my phone at home...and I felt like I lost a body part!

This feels like a problem. An addiction that I need to get under control.

I sometimes think about all of the stuff I could be doing if I wasn't so attached to these things. I have so many books that I want to read and things I want to do and crafts I want to make.....

Summer is around the corner and there will be less time online because I have big plans for the kids and we will have a garden to water and there will be lots of walks and playing. My kids are so young and so much fun and I don't want to waste any time that I should be spending with them. Time is passing much to fast.....

And another wake up call? My daughter is always saying...Listen To Me! Perhaps I'm not doing enough listening and my attention is not where it should be....

It seems like the perfect time to start to wean myself from my desk chair....and my couch!

I read this post today and I'm taking the challenge. One day in May...completely unplugged!
On May 20th, I will unplug from everything....iPhone, Computer and TV. I will spend the day with my kids and we will enjoy the day free from distraction! We will photograph our day...and post about it on June 1st.

Who wants to join me?

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Celebrating Jen Lancaster Day!

Happy Jen Lancaster Day!

I had this idea kicking around in my head a few weeks ago that May 5th should be Jen Lancaster Day. If you have been reading my blog for more than 5 minutes you probably know who Jen is and that she is my favorite author of all time. I have been reading her books for a couple months now and today her newest book Pretty in Plaid is coming out! What's that? May 5th is Cinco De Mayo? I think I can safely say that Mexico is not our best friend right now and we are much better off celebrating someone that doesn't give us the flu and make us die. Right?

I was so excited that I thought the whole day should be devoted to Jen and my quest to find her book. Find her book, you say? Yes. Here's the Utah, unless your book is about is a little hard to find a funny, sassy book with cuss words in it. Dang it. See! I couldn't even cuss just then because I am in Utah. In fact, when my sister was here a few weeks ago....we searched high and low in Target for Such a Pretty Fat and finally found a copy on the bottom shelf.

Which brings me to my next order of business. I am going to put Jen's new book, Pretty in Plaid in front of all of the Twilight books other books at the store. So it's just a sea of Plaid! Good idea right? I want everyone to know how great these books are!

And because it isn't a party without a theme...I am dressed in Plaid & Pearls today! I even unearthed my Fauxberry purse from the closet! And when I return home with my prized possession...I am going to have a White Russian! It will be 5 o'clock somewhere....

I'm also going to let you in on a little secret....for years it has been my dream to travel to Chicago and meet Oprah. Like if I were on my death bed and you asked me 'what do you want to do?' I would say....Eat Fried Chicken with Oprah! This is no longer my last dying wish. Now, I want to go to Chicago and meet Jen Lancaster.

I have a family vacation to Milwaukee planned in July and we are going to Chicago for one day. My family doesn't know it yet but they are going to help me locate and stalk meet Jen! Oprah can suck it.

So you know what you need to do today right? Get out there and buy Pretty in Plaid! Heck just buy all four books because they are all hilarious!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

What's Cookin with Mallory

Welcome to Mallory's Kitchen!

Mommy is very busy making lists and checking them twice getting ready for our trip next weekend so I told her that I would take over the blog for the day.

One of my favorite things to do is to imitate my Mommy in my play kitchen. She is a fabulous cook and I know she works very hard at finding great recipes and making nice meals for us which Alex refuses to eat and I like to throw on the floor.

Today I am making a really special dish that is so easy *even a cranky Alex could make it*. It is called Skillet Fried Burger Cheese!

This is the tricky part....are you paying attention?

It is all about the technique. You have to push the lettuce down like this into the skillet.

Awww....screw it, let's use the rolling pin to flatten the burger cheese. It needs to be very, very thin. Cook it like this for about 45 seconds and then serve it to your brother. Don't for get to make him do the dishes when you are done.


Martha....look out!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Weekend Update...Singing in the Rain!

Last Sunday marked the first day of Potty Training. Any hopes of training both kids at the same time have been dashed! Mallory wants nothing to do with it. The good news is that Alex is so greedy in love with Thomas stuff that he will do just about anything to get more trains. He had a gold star day...going potty 4 times and wearing real underwear for a couple of hours.

Monday...more potty training that came to an abrupt stop when a ball of poo rolled across my living room floor. Major Potty Training Fail! The kids played with their dyed pasta. Next week I will introduce GLUE! I also discovered my new favorite thing...Cold Brewed Iced Coffee.

Tuesday...we went to the Union Station Museum and purchased a Season Pass. This pass will allow us access to the train museum, Ogden Nature Center and the Dinosaur Park for a full year. Also 10% off all items at the gift shop which had some adorable goodies in it. This special pass is a well kept secret that I am letting out of the bag! This offer is only good at the Union Station. We walked around a bit looking at the trains and the kids enjoyed their first Junior Mint in front of the fountain. Now we will have plenty to keep us busy this summer!

Wednesday... Potty training has been suspended until further notice. We were supposed to go to the Ogden Nature Center but I woke up with a migraine and it was a little chilly so we cancelled. That night, I went to dinner with my friend Loralee who is about to have a baby boy named Aaron! We spent four hours eating, talking and laughing! It was just what I needed....

I have very little recollection of Thursday. Why do Thursday's do this to me? I do know that I made a very good choice and turned down pizza and asked Calvin to bring me a sandwich from Subway! YAY me!

Friday...rain! All morning. The afternoon brought sunshine! We went out for iced cream and then the kids played in the backyard until bedtime...they slept like logs!

Saturday...MORE RAIN! I participated in the March of Dimes Walk with Monica and Kaycee and we were marching for Maddie Spohr. We were soaked! But we had a great time talking and walking and listening to The Band. I raced home in time to change out of my super wet clothes, pick up Alex and we went to our friend Haylie's 1st Birthday Party. He inhaled a pink cupcake and played with his girl friends. Then I raced home and dropped Alex off and went to get my hair cut. I'm thrilled with how it turned out.

Have a great week!

Friday, May 1, 2009

The Year Ahead...May

The world's favorite season is the spring.
All things seem possible in May.
- Edwin Way Teale

April got away from me. I know many of you Mom's understand that your brain wants to shut down and go into denial when your baby turns three. It is completely hard to imagine that 1095 days have gone by and this baby is now turning into a BOY. And the BOY suddenly doesn't need a nap and wakes up at the crack of dawn and can escape from his cage crib.

The good news is that SPRING is always a time of renewal for me. The snow melts away and I expose my super white feet to the sun and I realize I desperately need a pedicure and some new sandals! May brings hope and promise and planting of flowers and seeds! It brings fresh vegetables, grilled food and children playing in the sprinklers!

This is going to be a great summer! I can already tell. There is a big family vacation to Wisconsin planned. We have the kids signed up for Parent/Child swimming lessons, I bought a summer pass to the Union Station Museum which includes free admission to a nature center and a Dinosaur Park. I have started leafing through all of my books and torn out magazine pages looking for fun crafts and ideas for lazy summer days.

Melissa at The Inspired Room has inspired me to work on my goals again and it all started with her list of 20 Little Happy Things. Here are mine....

1. Cold Brewed Coffee
2. The Kid's playing and laughing together
3 When the UPS man brings me packages
4. Magazines in the Mail
5. Tweets from Martha Stewart
6. A fresh Subway Sandwich
7. Snuggling up with my husband to watch TV
8. Dining with a friend that makes me laugh
9. Sipping Red Wine
10. Laughing with my sister
11. Shopping for adorable clothes and shoes for my daughter
12. Getting Comments on my blogs (yes...I have 4 now)
13. When my husband is inspired...he's working on a new project
14. The first tulips of the season
15. Driving my new truck...thanks Big Poppa
16. Sitting in the Sun
17. Pour Some Sugar On Me...just heard it Wednesday night
18. Curling up on the couch with a great book...Jen Lancaster is my favorite!
19. Dessert!
20. Thinking about the future with my husband and children....The Best Is Yet To Come!

My goals for this month are going to be pretty simple....I'm trying not to have two many balls in the air because when I do this I tend to drop all of them and they roll under the couch and it takes me a couple weeks to find them all.

Weight....I started a new blog to help me really focus on the task at hand. I feel like it is helping me make the changes that I need to make. I would really like to lose 10 pounds by the end of May when the swimming lessons start. I have a lot of work to do....

Cooking...I joined the Daring Bakers and Daring Cooks! I'm so excited to complete these challenges and learn more. I also bought a couple new cookbooks and I'm anxious to go through them and find new recipes.

Garden...Me and the kids have already started our Recession Garden and it will be in full swing once we get back from Denver next weekend!

The Kids...Now that summer is approaching I am making big plans! My goal is to see our friends for playdates a couple times a month, go to story time at the library, do crafts, go hiking and find all kinds of fun things for us to do.

Big Poppa...I have some plans in the works...can't really discuss them here since he occasionally reads the blog once in a while but I am getting some great ideas from Love Actually! Cher's blog is devoted to creative ideas for Romance on a budget. I have already gotten so many great ideas from her and the one that started it...send a sexy text to your hubby! I won't tell you what happened after I did this....I'll just saw it was GOOD!

Me Time...I am still struggling to make myself a priority. I feel guilty when I ask for time away from the house alone. Even though I NEED this time and everyone is in a better mood when we get this break. I must make time to exercise. I must have some alone time to regroup.

I'm looking forward to a great month! Head on over to The Inspired Room...she has a giveaway!