Jan 31, 2013

30 Things - FINAL Update!

Well, here's the final update.  I didn't do everything, but I'm happy with the progress.  I'm going to add what didn't get done to a new list and try to accomplish them before next year.
  1. Learn to use my new sewing machine and make something special for both kids - This is a work in progress...I'm really enjoying learning my new sewing machine  (I'm crossing this off, even though I still have to finish Gavin's cape.  Both kids are getting mommy-made capes for Christmas!
  2. Crochet Riley a hat {Pretty sure this one won't ever happen.  I tried...I suck at it!}
  3. Complete C25K - Couch 2 5K   Complete!  (Though I hurt my shin in the process and can't run now...but I'm the ice and stretches will eventually help)
  4. Plant an herb garden (or at least one herb!) - I attempted one the Jackie bought for me, but it never did take off.  Now, I've planted just cilantro in a mason jar...we'll see if it grows.  {Yeah, it didn't.  I suck at growing things!}
  5. Create a collage in Photoshop Elements
  6. Make from scratch - a pie, a cake, and brownies {Cake is being made tomorrow for my birthday....so I just didn't get to the brownies}
  7. Have a Mommy-Son date
  8. Cook a turkey
  9. Collect letters to spell PATE for our kitchen - Have the A and the E!
  10. Get a facial (Not technically....but I got a Clarisonic for Christmas and now I feel like I'm getting a facial everyday!
  11. Take the kids to the beach - Trip scheduled for September 30!)
  12. Write a letter to myself to open when I'm 40 {cute idea...but I'm scared I'll forget to open it when I'm 40...still going to try!}
  13. Figure out how to make a DVD of my Flip videos
  14. Go to a drive-in movie
  15. Send at least two 'snail mail' letters/cards each month {thanks for the inspiration, Lauren!} Complete for Feb, Mar, Apr, May, June, July....slacked in Aug and Sept. 
  16.  Pay for a stranger's meal in the drive-thru lane
  17. Give up pop for a whole month {Much easier than I expected!}
  18. Go on a family picnic {We did this....but it was in our living room!}
  19. Create a survival kit- Not to the extent I wanted, but I do feel better about having some supplies in the closet for when we're hunkered down during a tornado warning
  20. Attend a baseball game - Daddy and Gavin did this, but we haven't done one as a family yet
  21. Organize all our photos - huge task!
  22. Read a 'classic' book - I have a feeling I'll fail this one; I'm just not a classics lover!  I tried twice and gave up.  I'll attempt it again.
  23. Publish another blog book - Done!  And I love it!  If any bloggers want a link to the website, I'd love you to use my referral link.                                                                                     
  24.  Play in the rain with Gavin {and Riley if she's old enough when this occurs} I'm counting the 'sprinkle' we played in...we didn't have much rain this summer!
  25. Start Skyping with friends- This is an easy one!  I just need friends that Skype! :)
  26. Go 'camping' in the backyard
  27. Repurpose something...anything Photos to come!!  I'm so excited about this one.
  28. Send someone flowers
  29. Learn to make bows for Riley
  30. Watch our wedding DVD with Gavin

Jan 26, 2013

18 Months?? NO WAY!

Seriously....when did this girl get to be a year and a half old???

Riley, my love....Where do I even begin with you???  You are seriously one of the goofiest kids I know. Between putting food in your mouth and letting it hang out (like veggie straws pretending you're a walrus!) to putting pretzels on your fingers like they're rings, to walking around with belts draped around your neck like they're the prettiest scarves in the world, Daddy and I love your silly personality that shows more and more every day.  You love to put Gavin's clothes on, put on layers of your own clothes, 'wear' mommy's bras, and walk around in other people's shoes.  Everything also becomes a purse and you really enjoy wearing Brother's backpack.  You're quite the fashionista!
The blankie obsession has progressed.  It no longer stays in the crib....it has to come out with her every morning and she spends much of the day with it wrapped around her or dragging it behind her.  We've also added more to the mix.  Elmo and Ernie dolls are now required to be in her bed with her, one under each arm, to sleep, and they come out of the bed in the morning, along with her blankie.  Gavin was never so attached to anything.


To go along with that photo, I have to mention her OBSESSION with Elmo these days.  It was not long ago that I told Jarrod that she wasn't into Sesame Street like Gavin used to be.  I jinxed it.  Now, we hear 'Elmo. Elmo. Elmo. Elmo.' 5000 times a day.  She brings us the remote and throws tantrums if we tell her Elmo is sleeping.  Oh, the tantrums.  That's another thing she's good at...really good at!  Riley is full of drama!  Everything causes meltdowns.  She can't watch Elmo. She can't have the phone. She can't play on the computer. It's not time for a bath. She can't have more to eat... It's never ending!

Riley loves to dance.  We watch Ellen together and she goes crazy for the music.  When we come in from the garage, she closes the door and says 'bye!' to the van.  She has many words (or something for a specific word).  She says mama, daddy, Elmo, cup, bye, Mimi, Sh for Shirley, pants when she sees a dog, moo, signs more and all done, ba for water bottle, wawa for water, nee for banana, does Ernie's laugh for Ernie, cookie, nose, no, eye... I'm sure there's more but I can't think of any right now.


Some of her favorite foods right now are bananas, dried fruit, sandwiches (without the crust now!), and cereal bars.  Riley's sleeping from about 7:30pm until anywhere between 6 and 7am.  Naps are for about 90 minutes in the afternoon.  She's wearing 18-24 month clothes and size 4 diapers.  I weighed her in our bathroom recently and she was about 23lbs; we'll get an exact number from the doctor later this week at her next check-up.

Mommy and Daddy love you, little girl.  So does your big brother!  You complete this family like we never thought possible.  So glad you're ours.

Happy half birthday!

Jan 22, 2013

4 Years!

Happy Tastefully Simple anniversary to me! 
The last four years have been fantastic!  I love this company, my team, and my job.  It's amazing how something that started out as a way for me to get out of the house, make a little extra money, and enjoy the discount has turned into SO much more.

Gavin says we should have a little party to celebrate...I think we'll celebrate with some Classy Chocolate Pound Cake! :)  

{Contact me if you'd like more info on joining my team!  It's amazing....you'll LOVE it!}

Minivan Mama

I know for some, being a minivan mama is something they do NOT look forward to; I am in the minority.  I have wanted one for so long, but I've been patient and waited until the timing was right.  Well, Jarrod decided the timing was right in December and we started looking to see if trading in his Jeep {yes, the one he had for just 9 months...} was the right thing to do.  We didn't think it was going to work out, but in the end, I finally got my new ride just a couple days after Christmas.  Merry Christmas to me!!
 
Isn't she pretty???
 
 
It really has way more than I ever expected to get in a minivan and will totally spoil me.  Navigation, DVD, back-up camera, heated leather seats, heated mirrors, sunroof, tons of storage...  I love the 6 disc CD changer because I'm able to load kids' CDs, my CDs, and books on CD all at the same time.  I love the back...so much room to keep all my party supplies in there all the time and still have room for the stroller and groceries.


Riley didn't love it as much as the rest of us when we first got it.  She screamed and cried every time we got into it to the point of making herself throw up, so she got to turn forward facing many months before I wanted her to.  She still has her moments in the van when we all wish we had earplugs, but she's getting better.

We already broke it in by removing a seat and the console and folding down part of the back and were able to go pick up a 70" dresser in it.  We definitely would have needed to borrow someone's vehicle if we didn't have it!

I love it so much.  The sliding doors are amazing!  I wish I had them years ago when I was lugging carseats around.  But, I'm just thankful I finally have one and so appreciative of my husband for trading in his vehicle and driving what he now calls the 'Tastefully Simple mobile' {since my window decals are still on the Highlander.}  I think he'd agree it was worth it. :)

 

Jan 14, 2013

Instagram Dump

I am a little addicted to Instagram.  I love playing with it and sharing pictures with friends and family.  For business purposes, I also use it to take pictures of meals I've made to share with my fans on Facebook.  I recently ran out of memory on my iphone (again!) and had to do a mass transfer so I'm sharing some random Instagram photos from the last few months.  I love looking back at old pictures....they make me smile. 










Jan 11, 2013

Daddy Time

I don't even recall when exactly it started.  I think it was when Riley was born...maybe it was shortly before.  Somehow, 'Daddy Time' started.  Gavin looks so forward to that special one-on-one time with Daddy after a long day of sharing my attention with his sister.  Every night is a little different.  Wrestling, Angry Birds, pillow fights, superheroes, iPad time, a board game... Since Riley's been in a better routine lately, I even get invited to join them for Daddy Time some nights.  But what I really love is to just sit back and watch them.  Watch my two boys spend that quality time together and think about how one day, when he's grown, Gavin's going to tell his kids about how he used to have 'Daddy Time' when he was their age.

Jan 8, 2013

Snow!

Snow!!  The day we got our new van {yes!!!  I still have to blog about the van!!} we got some snow, too.  It was a fantastic day!  We didn't get home until 4ish that day and Gavin was begging to go out into the snow.  I was afraid it would be our only snow of the season, so we bundled up in the best snow gear I could find (no one has snow boots that fit this year!) and attempted to play.

I say 'attempted' because even though she looks like she's having fun, this little girl wanted nothing to do with the snow.  She lasted less than 10 minutes outside and wouldn't even touch the snow.  I'm hoping next time, if we get more snow this winter, she'll enjoy it more so we can all play outside together for a little longer.


Jan 6, 2013

30 Things

Less than 1 month to go and still so much...oops!
  1. Learn to use my new sewing machine and make something special for both kids - This is a work in progress...I'm really enjoying learning my new sewing machine  (I'm crossing this off, even though I still have to finish Gavin's cape.  Both kids are getting mommy-made capes for Christmas!
  2. Crochet Riley a hat
  3. Complete C25K - Couch 2 5K   Complete!  (Though I hurt my shin in the process and can't run now...but I'm the ice and stretches will eventually help)
  4. Plant an herb garden (or at least one herb!) - I attempted one the Jackie bought for me, but it never did take off.  Now, I've planted just cilantro in a mason jar...we'll see if it grows.  {Yeah, it didn't.  I suck at growing things!}
  5. Create a collage in Photoshop Elements
  6. Make from scratch - a pie, a cake, and brownies
  7. Have a Mommy-Son date
  8. Cook a turkey
  9. Collect letters to spell PATE for our kitchen - Have the A and the E!
  10. Get a facial (Not technically....but I got a Clarisonic for Christmas and now I feel like I'm getting a facial everyday!
  11. Take the kids to the beach - Trip scheduled for September 30!)
  12. Write a letter to myself to open when I'm 40 {cute idea...but I'm scared I'll forget to open it when I'm 40...still going to try!} - In the process of completing this.
  13. Figure out how to make a DVD of my Flip videos
  14. Go to a drive-in movie
  15. Send at least two 'snail mail' letters/cards each month {thanks for the inspiration, Lauren!} Complete for Feb, Mar, Apr, May, June, July....slacked in Aug and Sept. 
  16.  Pay for a stranger's meal in the drive-thru lane
  17. Give up pop for a whole month {Much easier than I expected!}
  18. Go on a family picnic
  19. Create a survival kit- Not to the extent I wanted, but I do feel better about having some supplies in the closet for when we're hunkered down during a tornado warning
  20. Attend a baseball game - Daddy and Gavin did this, but we haven't done one as a family yet
  21. Organize all our photos - huge task!
  22. Read a 'classic' book - I have a feeling I'll fail this one; I'm just not a classics lover!  I tried twice and gave up.  I'll attempt it again.
  23. Publish another blog book - Done!  And I love it!  If any bloggers want a link to the website, I'd love you to use my referral link.                                                                                     
  24.  Play in the rain with Gavin {and Riley if she's old enough when this occurs} I'm counting the 'sprinkle' we played in...we didn't have much rain this summer!
  25. Start Skyping with friends- This is an easy one!  I just need friends that Skype! :)
  26. Go 'camping' in the backyard
  27. Repurpose something...anything
  28. Send someone flowers
  29. Learn to make bows for Riley
  30. Watch our wedding DVD with Gavin

Jan 3, 2013

Happy New Year!

It's crazy to think that it's 2013!  Jarrod and I were watching an HGTV show recently and the house was built in '96 and was so so so outdated.  He made a comment about '96 not being that long ago, and I had to remind him that it was almost 20 years ago!  1996 was when we started dating....that was a loooong time ago. :)

We celebrated the New Year in style....and by style I mean in our pajamas and by ordering pizza.  It was perfect.  We were planning to go out to dinner with friends, or maybe to a friend's house, but it was a nasty, cold rainy day and we opted to skip taking the kids out and just stay home.  We let Gavin stay up 'late' (9pm!) and we had a little 'toast' at 9 before he went to bed....us with our wine glasses, him with water in a small fancy shot glass!  Haha...  We watched last year's Times Square countdown on YouTube and toasted the year.  It was adorable.

Jarrod and I talked about resolutions.  He actually wanted to make one, which I don't recall him doing before.  He decided he wants to spend more time outdoors, exploring our area with Gavin and as a family.  I loved that!  Over the past year, I've enjoyed crossing things off my '30 Things' list, so I decided to make mine more of a weekly list.  Each week, I want to make sure I spend a little time focusing on photography and sewing {two things I want to become better at}, our budget/finances {a big long term goal for our family}, and doing something with Jarrod that doesn't involve watching TV after the kids are in bed or during naps {playing cards, cooking together, playing Wii, etc.}  I added those things to my weekly checklist so I can try to stay on top of them.  I'm also starting the Biggest Loser again to keep myself accountable.  I did well before and came in 2nd place, but I've gained back about half of what I lost last year since Megan's wedding because I slacked off on my calorie counting and exercising.  Time to get back on track!  

I have a huge training this weekend for my team that I'm spending all my time right now working on, but next week will be catch-up week on the blog! More December pictures and videos coming soon.  :)