Monday, March 30, 2009

Mod Podge Mania!

I am so super excited for our first edition of Mod Podge Mania! I love this stuff, and I LOVE getting new ideas for how to use it...so hopefully this will be a great place for "inspiration" where we can all get some fun new ideas!

So here's how it will work. Post about a project on your blog, along with instructions on how you created your mod podge masterpiece! OR you can do a post featuring a project you have seen someone else do, just to pass the idea along. Just make sure you give credit where credit is due! Also, make sure to include a link back to my blog in your post!

Next, link up by entering your name and copying the URL to your post into Mr. Linky - he's waiting at the bottom of this post. It would be helpful if you put the name of your project along with your name so people will know what they are coming to look at! (example: Xazmin - decorative eggs)

Last, go check out everyone's fabulous projects and let the inspiration begin! You can link up as many projects as you'd like today, or space several out over upcoming editions.

I'll go first! I already posted my decorative eggs - so I'm going to post the shower gift I made for my baby brother's fiance last week! This also qualifies me for Kimm's Trash to Treasure Tuesday as well as Kari & Kijsa's Trash to Treasure party...can you say DOUBLE BONUS!? You should go check them both out...it's so fun!

I started with this:
We have tons of 2x4 scraps laying around in our basement, from when we started to finish it! It's all framed in, but we had to take a break so we could save up more money!

I picked out several that looked good and spray painted them Ivory. Then I took some scrapbook paper, cut it to size and mod podged it to the wood!




I got some unpainted wooden letters from Robert's and spray painted them brown.

After the mod podge dried, I glued the letters to the 2x4's.

I sprayed a clear coat protective finish over the entire project and tied some tulle around a couple of the blocks. Here's how the finished project turned out!

My new little SIL loved it and I got some great compliments from the shower guests. I only had glossy finish clear coat, but I'm going to make some more and try the matte finish. I only had to buy the letters, because I already had all the other supplies. But don't worry, I'm not being cheap on the gift - my mom and I gave her a bunch of other stuff too! After all, she IS marrying my mom's baby!

If you make some of these...please link up next time so we can all see how they turn out! I can't wait to see what you all have done!
Also, I've decided to host this once a month on the last day of the month. It will be so fun!

Friend Makin' Monday - Woo Hoo!

It's time to make some friends! Each week Kasey hosts Friend Makin' Monday...an awesome way to meet new people and make new friends! If you want to play, go here to find out how!


This week's task is all about sharing. We're sharing 10 things we can't live without! So here goes:


1. My mascara...right now it's this kind (with the collogen in it! love it!):



But I really want to try that new kind with the "tips" I can't remember what it's called. It's like $11.00 though, so I might just stick with this!


2.My Camera. I love my camera! It's nice enough to take decent pictures, but simple enought that an amature like me can use it.
3. Itunes. I sooo love the convenience of getting my music anytime, day or night with the click of a button! And making playlists is sooo much easier than trying to make a mixed tape! And I can burn a cd for my car, listen to my workout playlist while exercising outside... It just rocks.


My current obsession (as those of you who read me regularly know) is these guys. I can't stop listening!

4. Herbal Essences Shimmer Nights Spray Gel. This stuff is a lifesaver while combing my girls whispy, fine hair. It helps me work with it, and also has a subtle, girly shimmer! Go glitter!
5. Dr. Pepper, Oh how I love thee! I rarely drink this anymore, Extreme Makeover Me Edition and all, but I'm not ready to give it up completely. It's still one of my treats!6. NCIS. I enjoy TV. I have to! It's the only thing that gets me through my 60 minute treadmill workout each day! I enjoy several shows, but this is the one show that I cannot miss! And if I do, I make a point to go back and watch it online before the next episode! No ladies, I am not up with the times...I do not have TiVo, or DVR!
I originally started watching for this guy - Michael Weatherly. Can you say "yum"? I fell in love, lust, physical appreciation with him back when he was Eyes Only on Dark Angel. But now, I am just addicted to the show, and all the characters!



7. hand sanitizer. What did we ever do before this stuff?


8. little claw clips. These are another necessity for doing my girls' hair. Their hair's too fine for bobby pins, and these hold it all in place great! In fact, I'm off to Walmart today to get some more so they can have FAB hair for the wedding on Thursday!

9. sunglasses. Especially right now with all the snow...it is BLINDING outside!
Would you guys still be my friends if I wore these around?


10. Cute colored nail polish for my toes! Hurry up sandal season...get here!


UPDATE:

I almost forgot to remind everyone about Mod Podge Mania! Be here. Tomorrow. Link up your ideas, and check out everyone's fab projects!

Saturday, March 28, 2009

I HEART Shoes!!

Have I ever told you that I LOOOOOOVE cute shoes? Especially cute heels? Well, I do.

So here's the deal...my baby brother's getting married on Thursday. I had to get a new dress, so OBVIOUSLY I have to get some new shoes, right? Actually, I really did need a new pair. All my black heels are looking pretty beat up and that's not okay for a wedding, ya know?

Soooo I was on the hunt! I always go look at Forever Young whenever I'm at the mall (which isn't very often these days!), because I think they have the stinkin' cutest shoes. But it's never at a time when I have new shoes in the budget, so I just look and admire. I don't really have new shoes in the budget now, but it's a wedding, right?

So today I eagerly went in knowing I would be able to buy something. I was immediately greeted by a bubbly size 0 18-year-old. I swear you have to be size 0 to work there, because I have never seen any normal size person in there.
Anyway, she says "Do you know about our sales going on?"
Me: "No, please tell me."
Size 0: "All our boots are 50% off and everything else is buy one get one 50% off."
Me: "Fantastic, I'm sooo buying 2 pair!"
I knew I needed black for the wedding, so I picked 2 fabulous pairs. Size 0 got them in my size, and I tried them both on. I couldn't decide...they were both so fabulous! So, I know you're just dying to know how I finally made my decision and what it was.

I decided to buy the pair that only came in black for the wedding. AND the other pair came in a variety of colors. So I picked hot pink! Now I know you're wondering if I have anything that will go with a pair of hot pink heels. NOPE! I don't. Here's what I decided:

The hot pink heels are definitely those kind of shoes that you buy the shoe, then have to buy an outfit specifically to go with those shoes! I've never done that of course, BUT... these shoes are my reward shoes. When I reach my goal weight - I will get to buy a new outfit in my new size to match my new hot pink heels! Isn't that the best idea? I thought so. Do ya wanna see 'em?
The Wedding Shoes
The REWARD shoes!Do you love them? They look kinda fuschia in the picture, at least on my monitor, but they really are a true hot pink!

Friday, March 27, 2009

Mod Podge Mania Preview...

Just wanted to give you a little preview for next week's 1st monthly Mod Podge Mania!


The project that inspired this fun feature was this Mod Podge egg project. Go here to see the details of how to turn these:

into this:



I also have been working on these fabulous coasters for my Spring Fling winners - I'll be finished today friends...I promise! These take time, but are NOT hard. I learned how to make them here.



There are soooo many fun things you can do with Mod Podge. I made a shower gift for my soon to be little sis-in-law, and am making another one for Saturday. Here's a "tease" of what I will be sharing for Mod Podge Mania.
I'll share my second gift in an upcoming edition! So this upcoming Tuesday, March 31st will be our first edition of Mod Podge Mania...I'm reminding you now so you can use the weekend to get your projects finished! Or maybe you already have something done that you want to share! Or maybe you just saw an idea online that you want to share...the whole point is for everyone to get some great new ideas for creating with Mod Podge!

So get your pictures together - be prepared... and make sure to come back on March 31st and link up for Mod Podge Mania!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Hot Hubby Award!


Today I need to award my Hubby. I think he's pretty dang cute. However, that's not why he's hot. Let me tell you why my husband's hot.

The last couple of days I've abused my body just a little. My back is aching because I moved a bunch of cases of food storage in order to get them out of the way. Then last night when I was exercising, I did something a little foolish.

You see, I usually go for an hour on the treadmill, then I take a few minutes to cool down at a slower pace. Well last night I went to change the pace after my hour was up,and I hit the wrong button and it messed everything up on my pace/time, etc. Well, instead of taking the time to reset everything and do my cool down, I thought "ah, forget it" and just got off the treadmill without cooling down. I sat on the couch next to hubby and caught up on some blogs while he watched the basketball game. When I stood up to get cleaned up (I don't smell fantastic after and hour on the treadmill!) before going to bed - OUCH! I could feel it in my legs, especially my calves... the were STa-IFF!

When my tired hubby (he works nights and only got home a few minutes before I got done exercising) followed me into bed, he sat down and massaged my sore back and legs. It was sooo what I needed! He takes such good care of me, even though I'm not always the easiest person to live with. Okay, I'm almost never the easiest person to live with. Believe me - sometimes the fireworks fly! But still....

Thanks for being hot - this one's for you babe!

I pass this award along to all of you who have a hot hubby! Take the award, post it on your blog and tell us why your hubby's hot! Make sure to leave a comment if you do so I can come read!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Extreme Makeover - Me Edition!

I've joined up with Amber to do a weekly linky fest for those of us who are trying to make ourselves over! If you are in the same boat, and want some bloggy support, go over and link up!

This week has been good for me. After a few slow weeks, my weight loss has really kicked into gear. I've been better at my exercise - something I actually LOVE, but seem to run out of time for. I know, I know - you're supposed to exercise first thing - but that just won't fly for me...believe me, I've tried! Evenings are when I seem to be able to really get it done. I hop on the treadmill, turn on a show I enjoy, and only allow myself to check "how much longer" during commercial breaks.

Also, I'm always trying to make food choices that are on the lower calorie end of the scale. I don't eat "light" or "fat free" of anything though. I feel like it is so synthetic - I question the actual health benefits of something so unnatural.

This week Amber asked us to share some snack ideas that seem to work for us. Here's mine...


With this:


Now I know you're supposed to snack on fruits and such, but to me, fruit is not a food. Yes it's delicious and yes it's refreshing - it's just not satisfying when you have the munchies. Yep, fruit is definitely a beverage - not a snack.

I crave salty snacks like nachos, chips, french fries...so the popcorn is a great substitute. Even the movie theatre butter (the kind I like) is very low in fat and calories. I know the sodium may not be as low as one might hope for, especially when I add my magic pixie dust - but I'm a salt craver and there is NO WAY I could pull of a sodium free diet. Instead I choose to drink lots and lots of water. That way the water retention effects sodium can have are countered. I also have really low blood pressure - so the high blood pressure risk associated with sodium is not an issue for me. If you have this issue I don't think lots of water will help much!

I still try to eat lots of healthy foods - especially those high in fiber - but when I am just craving a salty snack - the popcorn is better than the nachos or fries!

Thanks Amber for starting this great support system!

Quick Post

Just wanted to do a quick post before I'm off for the morning. Sassytimes has posted a request for support at a spaghetti dinner fundraiser for the family of a young boy who lost his mother and unborn baby sibling in a car accident.

I don't live in the Toledo area - but if you do and you want to help, you can read the details here. Let's keep this little boy in our prayers.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

I can't wait until April 3!

Is it my birthday? Nope.

Anniversary? uh-uh

How 'bout hubby's birthday, or one of the kiddos? Nah.

On April 3 there is NOTHING going on! Isn't that awesome? This past several weeks has been CaRAZY! You see my baby bro is getting married. You might remember my mom and I, with the help of my aunt Darla, and her daughter Stephanie recently threw a bridal shower for the soon to be little sis-in-law. We have a HUGE family, and it was a luncheon.

We had mahogany chicken wings (they're fab. I will post the recipe sometime), sweet and sour meatballs, salads, rolls, desserts and goodies. Oh, and can't forget the Jello! We had lots of baking, making and cooking to do. We divided it up - but it still kept us hoppin'!

I had the idiot idea of trying a new cut out cookie recipe that is chocolate heart cookies, then dipped in white chocolate, then drizzled with semi-sweet chocolate. Why, oh why do I not know how to do anything simple? It took FOREVER! They looked super cute, but I have to say, I wasn't too crazy about the taste of the actual cookie. Oh, well.

I was in charge of coming up with party favors. I was drawing a creative blank! Luckily you crafty ladies chimed in with lots of great ideas! We ended up using this adorable idea from Shortmama. We took plastic spoons and put a couple of Hershey's kisses in the spoon and wrapped them with tulle. We tied them with ribbon and a tag that said "A spoonful of kisses from the soon-to-be Mrs." Isn't that cute? And when I say "we" I mean the other ladies, because since I was preparing for a boutique as well, they didn't trust me to get mine finished! Okay, okay, they were just being thoughtful - but I would have gotten them done!! I would have! Thanks for the perfect idea Shortmama!
I also made a gift for the shower, to go along with the other things we were giving "C" (that's what I'll call her). This took a bit of time, but I'm so pleased with how it turned out. I'll post pictures of it next week for Mod Podge Mania. Make sure to come back on the 31st to see everyone's great projects!

Now, I thought it would be a relief to have it over with (not that I don't LOVE "C", I just meant the pressure to get everything done would be off!) But now here's the itinerary for THIS week! Thursday C is going to be going to the temple for her first time. She has invited hubby and I to go. We wouldn't miss it! Saturday is another shower that her family is throwing, and I am also making a gift that goes to that shower. I'll post a pic of it when I'm finished.

Besides wedding stuff, Ribbon Blossoms has kept me on my toes! We are working to get the Girly Giveaway package ready. The bow-holder was custom, so we needed to make it - it wasn't all ready or anything! Also, I'm finishing up the coasters I'm sending from the Spring Fling giveaway - that's right, I haven't forgotten you ladies!!!

And April 2 is the big day! Yay to J (my bro.) and C! What a day it will be. We will head to the temple in the morning for the marriage. We will then take pictures on the temple grounds, after which we will be heading to Mimi's Cafe for the wedding luncheon. We may have a little bit of down time after this, but then it will be off to the reception center for the festivities! I am so excited - it is going to be such a beautiful day for our family!


Then... then comes April 3. I will sit home and blog ALL. DAY. LONG. Yup. Not gonna do a thing on that day. I may sleep 'til noon! Who knows! All I know is it will be divine!

I'm sorry I don't have any fun pics to post from the shower. My mom took them all, so they're on her camera. But I'll post a bunch of pictures from all the showers and the wedding next week!
Now I'm off to work on the gift for Saturday's shower! Wish me luck!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Friend Makin Monday

I'm a little late today, but better late than never...right?

Today for FMM we are to list 10 things we are super thankful for.
Here goes:

1 - I'm thankful for the Atonement of Jesus Christ. What a wonderful gift!

2 - I'm thankful for a wonderful husband who works so hard to provide for our family, and makes it possible for me to stay home with our children. (still won't let me post his pic.) This brings me to...

3 - Bookworm. He is bright and talented and oh so inventive! I am so proud of him!

4 - Cowgirl. She is kind and good. But at the same time she is witty and slightly obnoxious!


5 - Pixie. She will be the death of me! But her strong spirit will serve her well! She's a diva!


6 - Monkey. She cracks everyone up! Her antics are about to crack me up all the way to the nut house! But she is growing up so fast. Each day she learns something new, and my baby slips further away to be replaced by this smart, "big girl".

7 - I'm thankful for a home that keeps my family safe and warm.
8 - I'm thankful to live in this great nation. The greatest on earth.
9 - I'm thankful for our Founding Fathers, and all who have sacrificed so much to preserve the cause of freedom, as well as those who are still sacrificing today.

10 - And I'm thankful for wonderful, warm friendships. For longtime friends, as well as new ones - yes that means you!

If you want to join in the fun, go visit Kasey to learn the rules and link up!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Holiness to the Lord

My heart is full tonight. Today I had the opportunity, along with my husband, to take our two oldest children and attend a session of the dedication of the newest LDS temple.

A few weeks ago we were able to take the entire family to tour the inside of the temple during the public open house. During this time, before the temple is dedicated to the Lord, the temple is open to the public for anyone to come walk through and tour the inside. My kids were so excited - they have always asked me what it was like inside the temple. I've tried to explain it to them. There is nothing in this world that can compare to the beauty, the serenity, the absolute peace that can be found within the walls of these holy buildings.

Today as we attended the dedication, I was overcome with emotion as I sat with my husband, and two of my children, sharing with them this special experience. I am so grateful to have had this opportunity.

As I was waiting for the meeting to start, listening to the beautiful music and feeling the sweet spirit that was present - I pondered on a couple of things. Recently, as I have been hopping around different blogs, I have read a couple of things pertaining to my faith, and to the way members of our church are perceived by those not of our faith. I also reflected on some of the words that were spoken when I attended church this morning. The topic was on sharing our faith and beliefs with others, and how it is sometimes difficult because we may be afraid of over stepping our bounds, or perhaps offending someone.

I thought about how there are times when I feel perfectly comfortable with reaching out and sharing what I believe - and it is such a joy. But there are other times when I feel like sharing something with someone, but don't because I am too afraid of what they will think.

It also occured to me that there may be many people who are actually wondering about some aspect of our beliefs, or religious practices but don't know how to ask, either because they are afraid of offending someone, or they maybe just don't know anyone who is a mormon.

So I have a couple of questions. If you are LDS, do you sometimes find it difficult to share your testimony with those who aren't members, because you are afraid of offending them?

And if your aren't LDS, do you, or would you find it offensive if someone who is LDS wants to share what they believe? OR do you have something you have wondered about that you don't know how to ask?

I really want to know what you all have to say. Leave me a comment, or a question. I promise that: 1- I will not be offended no matter what the question or comment, and 2- I will answer each person who asks me a question. You can leave a comment, even anonymously if you prefer, and I will respond through the comments, or you can email me through my profile and I will respond through email.

The Church has a website specifically for learning about the beliefs of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, you can visit at http://www.mormon.org/.

To end tonight, I just wanted to share this video about the blessings of the temple. I love this video, and hope you will enjoy it as well.



Friday, March 20, 2009

I've been awarded!

I really didn't mean to save these all up and do them at once! But I haven't had a chance to pass them along, because I really like to take the time to put thought into who I want to pass them to.
And it's been an INSANE couple of weeks with our family UNvacation, and planning for a boutique AND a bridal shower. I'm not complaining - I love the boutiques (although it was a small relief that this one got postponed) - and I love my future little sis-in-law. I just don't want anyone to think I don't appreciate them thinking of me for these awards!

First up:

Amy at Keeping Up With The Shultzes gave me the Love Ya Award. I can't believe how sweet she is for thinking of me! I love reading her posts, and "keeping up" with all the fun she and her family have. Thank you Amy!



The LOVE YA award:“These blogs are exceedingly charming. These kind bloggers aim to find and be friends. They are not interested in self-aggrandizement. Our hope is that when the ribbons of these prizes are cut, even more friendships are propagated. Please give more attention to these writers. Deliver this award to eight bloggers who must choose eight more and include this cleverly-written text into the body of their award" .

I would like to pass this award on to the following gals that I just love, you must go check them out - you will love them too!:

Kari at U Create.
Sturgmom at Sturgmom, In General.
Bonnie at The Boatwright Family.
Martha at The Confetti Chronicles.

I'm going to keep this at 4 tonight, as I have some more awards to pass out.

Next, Michelle at Live, Laugh, Love and Learn has honored me with the Fabulous Award! I can't believe she thinks I'm fabulous! I think she's fabulous too! And she seriously has THE BEST SMILE! Thanks Michelle!
I pass this to the following ladies - I think your blogs are FABULOUS! Mostly because you crack me up! But also because you have some really cool stuff that I love reading about!

Jennifer at Just Bee Koz

Shortmama at Family of Shorts

Shawn at Seriously

I feel so loved this week, because I'm not finished yet! Dawn at Life At Eventually Cottage and That Girl at Sunshine and Rainbows, have given me the Sisterhood award. I need to pass it to 5-10 bloggy sisters who show great attitude or gratitude.

I want to pass this to the following wonderful bloggers who truly show great attitude and gratitude:

Cheryl at Twinftuation

Rhonda at Down Memory Lane

Michaela at Mama Michie's Musings

Joy For Your Journey

Aimee at HomeSpun Threads

I am going to stop here for tonight - but I'll be handing out some more awards soon. Thank you everyone for making me feel so welcome, and loved in bloggy land!

Fantastic Friday!!!

Do you want to know why today is FANTASTIC? Well, I'll tell you...I've finally hit the 20 lb mark! WOO HOO!!! I have lost 20.4 lbs. I still have a ways to go, but the last few weeks have been sloooooow losing - so this week I'm pleased to say the weight loss has picked up!!

Another FANTASTIC something?.... Shawn at Seriously is having a fantastic giveaway to celebrate her 100th post. Go check it out! GO! Right Now!

Last - I've been honored with awards from some FANTASTIC ladies. I will be back before the day is over to tell you about them and pass them along!

I'm sorry I haven't been by to visit many of you recently - I have been seriously lacking in computer time. I've had my hands full preparing for a boutique AND a bridal shower I'm throwing with my mom. Well, the boutique was cancelled due to a booking conflict at the venue, so a little sigh of relief there. And the shower is tomorrow, sooo by tomorrow night I will have the freedom to visit you all to my hearts content!!! Don't give up on me - I'll be by soon - I promise!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

What we did instead of Disneyland

So the first week and a half of March was supposed to be spent together as a family in sunny California. We have been planning this vacation for over a year. We had estimated the amount the trip would cost, and planned for Disneyland, Seaworld, Universal Studios, and San Diego Zoo. We were all so excited. We've never been to Disneyland as a family.


Here's what happened during the couple of months preceeding our trip. First our carpet cleaning equipment broke down. We own a carpet cleaning company, and this is our livelyhood. We had a major repair and multiple minor repairs that resulted in a couple thousand dollars price tag.

We still thought we could swing the trip. Then our family car got sick. Another several hundred dollars in repairs.

The best part was the Sunday afternoon that we came home from church to find that both our company vans had been broken into. We had one of our portable cleaning machines stolen, as well as some other small equipment, my husband's stereo, and damage to both vehicles from the break-ins. Our insurance company for our business told us that it would be 3 separate claims, one each for the damage on the vans, and a separate one for the machine. We would need to meet the $500 deductable 3 times! How lame is that? Seriously, if your house gets broken into, or burns down, you don't have to do a separate claim for every item that needs replaced!!!

Anyway, needless the say the bank account was pretty slim. Even if we pulled together the money to make the trip - we would be in trouble down the road. Most of our work is commercial, so we bill our customers and get paid within the next 30 days. Because of the time my husband was unable to work when his equipment was down, and then when he was without one of his machines - we knew that the income for the next couple of months would not be what it had been for the previous months.

Sooooo, with what was left of our Disneyland fund, we decided to go out and do some fun things around the community each day the kids were out of school. We went...

To Nicklecade

bowling


To a local pizza place that has all sorts of kids rides - they loved it!

Even though it wasn't Disneyland (It actually SNOWED!) We had such a good time together and made some great memories. We also played laser tag, went to some great restaurants for dinner and breakfast, and did some shopping and crafting together. We're still trying to make it to Disneyland before the end of the year!