Friday, December 30, 2011

Not so happy in the old year

Yeah, so my Gram moved yesterday and I have yet to see her. Apparently, I and my children would be in the way. No one has really said it that rudely, of course, but I was told last night that it would be too chaotic and I was supposed to come up today to take her to the grocery store and visit, etc. and I just got a call from her that it wouldn't work for today because other people would be coming over for other things and... could we do it tomorrow instead? Sure. Why not?

I'm really struggling right now to feel like I'm not really needed by anyone outside my home. At least my kids and husband still love me.

Looking forward to a quiet night in tomorrow night. Usually, we get together with friends and drink a little too much and laugh and play games, but this year a combination of things led to us just staying in for the night. I'm really looking forward to the special take-out we're going to bring in for dinner and the fact that the last Harry Potter movie is coming in the mail via Netflix today (so we'll save it for tomorrow.) A bottle of wine, some strawberries and my favorite snuggle partner (my husband) and it sounds like a bit of heaven to me.

Not feeling too happy right now, but I'm managing. Add to that that this is my late uncle's birthday and yesterday was the anniversary of his death. He passed away several years ago (before I was even married, actually) but we were close, and I really miss him.

It really hasn't been a bad year - overall, things are good, it's just I'm having some darker moments this week. Here's to hoping that 2012 is a little better!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Excited

Excited about the outlet sale - already placed my order, got my SIL to place hers and now I have to get my mom to check it out. You too can get in on these prices - 50% or more off original retail! Stock up on gifts for birthdays, baby showers, etc.

My Gramma is moving to town tomorrow. I am also psyched about that. She's beginning to show her age a bit more (she's 84) and has been more forgetful and not as spry as she once was. Which is understandable, but still, it will be nice to have her closer where I can check in on her more, we can get together more often and if she has any problems, my mom and I are more available to her. It will be wonderful to have her nearby. I have been wanting to spend more time with her, but making the 2-hour car trip with the 2 kids is not easy. And since much of the trip is somewhat in the middle of nowhere, it's not something I like to do by myself very often. This move will allow me to visit her for an afternoon or just drop in to take her to lunch. As her favorite granddaughter, (well, in my mind anyway! she would never admit to that) I am very happy that she moved closer to us and not further away (and thus closer to my uncle and his family.) Not that I begrudge her time spent with the other part of the family, but I think this will ultimately be more relaxing for her as opposed to always feeling like she needs to help out with my soon-to-be 12-year-old cousin, T.

Anyhow, also a relation-of-sorts of mine is getting married tomorrow. I won't be able to be there, unfortunately, but I am so happy for her - I know that this guy is basically her best friend and that is the BEST way to begin a marriage. I am still madly in love with my best friend, nearly 7 years into our marriage and it just gets better and better.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Christmas Passed*

I've spent my morning hitting refresh on a number of pages, waiting for the link to the Thirty-one Outlet Sale. We were told it would open to consultants on December 27th and to the public on December 28th. But no further info was given. I'm supposed to be folding the MOUNTAIN of laundry I have collected recently, (which I have done SOME), but I keep coming back to the computer to check to see if it is open. Geez, people!

I got a Nook Tablet for Christmas and I am LOVING it. It would be perfect if I could switch all my already-downloaded Kindle books over to it, but we shall see. Having a blast playing Words with Friends with my Aunt Sharon. Though, dang, that game takes a long time because you have to wait for the other person to notice that YOU played... anyhow. It's fun. I've already found several books and apps. Good times.

We had a nice Christmas overall. The kids were spoiled by everyone and we have so many new toys and things for them to play with! My mom was so excited about the Moon Dough she got for Fuss. My sister had told me about it and Fuss has played with some at their house - but OMG is this stuff a pain to clean up! I mean, yes, you can vacuum it, but it's like it doesn't really stay together, so you are vacuuming it up A LOT. On one hand, this means that I am vacuuming more than usual and getting my floor cleaner than usual. On the other hand, I am vacuuming more than usual and I hate to vacuum and both of my children are sensitive to loud noises and fuss, cry, and run away when the vacuum starts up. So there's that.

I've been having my daily headaches again and I am SO over it. Wishing there was a way to make myself feel better!

(* I stole the title today from Heather Spohr at The Spohrs are Multiplying.)

Friday, December 23, 2011

Christmas Adam

My cousin posted on FB this morning that this is Christmas Adam - the day before Christmas Eve (and Adam came before Eve.) Apparently they made a tradition of an appetizer feast on Christmas Adam at their house. Sounds like fun.

My husband is home from work early today. He snuck into the back yard to put together the climber toy that we got the kids for Christmas. Now we have to finish wrapping and CLEAN UP THE HOUSE. Kat and Gracie came by to drop off presents for the kids and I was SO embarassed! The house is a disaster.

I'm cooking my crabcakes for lunch. I have another headache and I am just SO over the pain and discomfort I've been feeling lately. I'm not REALLY old enough to feel this old. I have joint pain, muscle pain, back pain and then there are the headaches. I just want it to be OVER.


Thursday, December 22, 2011

You Live, You Learn

I was with my in-laws (J, LP and my MIL) from 8:30am to 6:30pm yesterday. Seriously, I think 10 hours of them might be too much. Especially without my husband as a buffer. It was nice of them to include me (and the kids) in their holiday plans (LP's gift to her mom) to visit Bok Tower and their holiday display, but wow. It was a really long day.

Add to that that I almost (accidentally) killed my dog. Geez. We wanted to bug-bomb the house while I was gone. So my husband and I rushed around in the morning getting everything ready. When he left, I thought he had put the dog in the garage (where he would spend the day while the house was being fumigated) since I didn't see him anywhere and he didn't get up and make noise when the ILs came, etc. We loaded everyone up, I set off the bombs and we left. Forty-five minutes later, I had the thought - I really hope Daddy Fuss put the dog out. I called him to make sure. He didn't answer, so I called again and he answered. No, he HADN'T put the dog out. I called my mom who was THANKFULLY off that day and able to come by the house and rescue him. We was barking when she arrived, so that was a good sign and didn't seem like he was having a problem and has been fine ever since, as well. But here I was, on my way to a day that I didn't really want to be doing anyhow, worried about my dog... I was really trying to keep it together in front of my MIL and the kids.

Every time I spend a large chunk of time with my ILs, I always vow never again. (without my husband around - it's something very different when he is there to buffer and be on my side, etc.) And it's never really overt, but it's almost like they don't really want me around, they somewhat ignore me, etc. It's a little crazy. And separate, we get along just fine. We can talk and whatever with very little issue, but it's like when they are together, they are this impenetrable unit and I am an outsider.

And what's crazy is that they asked me to come to this thing. They paid. (or LP did.) They could have very easily just asked for Fuss to come along if they had only wanted her (and she was free admission) and I would have been (mostly) fine with that. (We've had one incident where I felt they made poor choices while caring for her, but I really try to not harp on it much. She wasn't hurt or in danger, so I'm working on letting it go. I haven't yet, but I'm working on it.)

Ah, well. I shouldn't really complain. Things are fine. There was no major problem yesterday (other than 2 tired kids at the end of the day) so since it was just my own interpretation of events that led to feeling slighted, I should just get over it.

As the Philosopher Alanis once said, "You live, you learn."

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

My achy breaky back

The kids gift to their daddy is done, wrapped and under the tree. I'm kinda proud of myself for getting it finished.

I have so much crap to do around the house between now and Sunday. While the mess has improved, there is certainly plenty left to do.

And I am so tired. And I ache all over. I did something to my back. What started out this morning as mildly annoying joint aches has progressed to the point where I can no longer pick up my baby. Right now I'm waiting for my mom to come over to change his diaper (she's on her way). I hurt so much.

And I'm supposed to go to this thing tomorrow with my in-laws. Where we spend all day walking around some fancy garden or something. I'm supposed to drive. And bring the kids. And right now, it hurts to move.

I just want to lay down. I have all this stuff to do and I really, really don't want to.

I love wrapping gifts, I have so much fun making the packages pretty. But I am so tired of wrapping right now. And to sit on the floor and do it sounds like some sort of torture. I guess it's good that at least half of my wrapping is done!



Monday, December 19, 2011

Done!

No seriously, I think I'm done with my Christmas shopping. Including prep stuff. We have our turkey thawing in the freezer (his name is Ignatz. Although, my husband keeps referring to him as Ignatius. I told him either way, he was going to get very personal with said bird and so he might as well just call him Iggy.) And this morning, Living Social helped me out with the final gift for my husband - something I didn't think I was going to be able to get in time, but did!

I am still waiting for one small package for Fuss. Technically, it's the package that contains the gift from her brother, but I have an alternate if it doesn't show on time. I bought it off Amazon and didn't realize that they weren't guaranteeing delivery by Christmas until I had already bought it. Also still waiting on the package containing the bulk of my husband's gifts - but that is scheduled to be delivered tomorrow. I'm not overly worried.

Regardless, I am done. I think. I had one other project that I wanted to do for my husband, but it might not get done. Depends a lot on the kids and if they cooperate. I really should do my best since it 's technically their gift to their daddy, but he won't really care one way or the other. I also need to go to the post office to mail my SIL's package, but again, that might not happen before Christmas and even if it doesn't, no biggie. So they get some gifts after Christmas, the girls will be thrilled!

I am so happy with all my homemade gifts this year! I'm proud of myself! Of course, my addiction to Pinterest should be credited and I keep finding other things I want to do, but my husband has declared that anything additional needs to wait until after Christmas. Which is fine. I can handle that.

I found something yesterday that I had bought months ago (September?) for Fuss and I'm excited about it. I mentioned that I thought she might have gotten the short end this year from us (though Grandma has totally picked up the slack) but I think there will be plenty for her to be excited about.

I made my Snickerdoodles yesterday and they turned out great. I'm hoping to make the pretzel chocolate things today and my husband's oatmeal, crasin, white chocolate cookies tomorrow. If I can I need to make Cowboy Cookies for him on Thursday. They are his favorite.

Things I made this year:
1. Bean bags for the kids. Sure to be a big hit.
2. Doll diapers for Fuss and her friend Gracie.
3. Stuffed, crinkly owls for my future niece or nephew and Gracie's little sister.
4. Rice-filled warmers for my SILs.
5. Picture frames (I decorated them) with pics of SILs and the kids for my SILs.
6. The annual family calendar for all the family. Courtesy of Shutterfly.
7. Framed kid-artwork for my Dad.
8. My Christmas Wreath.
9. Ornaments (with Fuss)
10. Decorated plates for my neighbors. I will also fill them with cookies.

I think that's it, but it seems like a LOT! And I have that one final thing to finish for Daddy Fuss. I'm quite proud of myself, actually.


Friday, December 16, 2011

7 quick takes

I realized at 4 in the morning that I hadn't written here all week. Blogger (me, not the website) FAIL.

1. I have found myself intrigued by Christmas lawn decoarations this year. Mostly, I used to think they were tacky. (Though I liked to look at them, so apparently I'm attracted to tacky.) But I want to find something tasteful to put up - though I'll probably have to wait until next year. I think I want a nativity scene. But not the blow up kind. There was one that was popular a few years ago and I swear, Joseph looked like Osama bin Laden.

2. We went to Kat's house yesterday and Gracie and Fuss made ornaments. We had so much fun. All of my ideas were courtesy of Pinterest. We had a good time - and even the mommies had a blast trying different things.

3. Need to go to the post office today. Love our Christmas cards this year!

4. I have to buy some food for Christmas dinner, finish the stocking stuffers, wrap gifts (one of my favorite parts), and clean up the house. And then, I am completely ready for Christmas. Of course, the day that everyone is coming, I may be singing a different tune.

5. This year, the Little Man is getting a Baby Laptop, a Little People Airplane and a CD and book. Fuss is getting a Sleeping Beauty set (similar here), wooden paper dolls, and a handful of other things. Santa is bringing them an outside climber-thing. It's got a small tower, a slide, a rock wall, and a ladder. Little Man is also getting a bean bag chair and a step stool. Fuss is getting those, too, except they are from my mom. (the step stool will be here Christmas morning, though. The bean bag chair is coming later.) My mom also got her an Our Generation doll - similar to the American Girls, only MUCH cheaper and more accessible. (sold at Target.) I think I might have not made the gifts terribly even this year. It seems like Fuss is getting the short end of the deal, but mostly the climber is for her right now and my mom is more than making up for it with the doll, etc. I wanted to get her the doll, but I thought my husband might kill me.

6. I've planted my first 2 recruiting seeds for my Thirty-one team. I'm psyched. Because both friends I've talked to have mentioned that they thought about it, are considering it. If I can get them BOTH to join, I could get a promotion before mid-year! Which would be AWESOME.

7. I'm dealing with a cluster of headaches again. I went to bed with a bad one and I woke up with an even worse one. I am grateful to my husband for letting me sleep as long as possible this morning. Between that and Excedrine Migraine, I am currently able to function.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Contentment

If you had asked me a week ago if I were content with my life, I would have sighed and told you no. For that matter, if you had asked me that the minute I woke up this morning, I would have answered the same.

But I'm reading a book that is reminding me how much I have to be thankful for - that being content in my life right now... is what I want to be. I look at my children - and they are SO beautiful. So smart and fun, and despite the fact that they often run me ragged, I enjoy them so much. And I wouldn't give them up for anything.

So it is my desire to be content in the gifts that I have been given. To enjoy each day and each moment of my life more fully.

People keep asking me what I want for Christmas - and they are trying to get a bead on what I want for my BIG GIFT when they ask. I can't tell them. I don't know. I don't really want for anything in my life right now. I have a beautiful family - a husband who loves me and two amazing children. I have a home that isn't perfect, but is more than sufficient for our needs. I have friends and a life that is really pretty good. I have been blessed. And I need to be reminded that I should be - and truly am - grateful for all of these things.


Monday, December 12, 2011

Wrappin'

The holiday have come to our house. Our (small, fake) tree is up and has ornaments (at least all of the ornaments I'm putting up this year, save our annual family ornament I haven't yet picked out) my wreath has been repaired, improved, and hung on the door. My husband hung the hooks for our lights outside last night (our icicle lights have gone missing the last 2 years. I bought more lights at Target last night.) I don't think I'm putting up my Christmas village this year, though. I'm feeling lazy. And there are already 4 wrapped Christmas presents under the tree! Actually, I think I am done Christmas shopping. I have a few more things to make, but overall, I'm done. That always saddens me, though. I love to shop and I love to give gifts so open season on gift giving for my family and friends is one big shot of joy directly into my veins.

I have a couple more projects to finish - the bean bags for the kids, the doll diapers for Fuss and her friend Gracie (I found a simpler pattern for the diapers and I have lots of cutting out to do over the next few days!) I bought a really nice (but on sale!) journal I think I'm going to give to Kat instead of making her something. I just couldn't figure out what to make. (Though she'll also be getting a small bottle of  homemade Limoncello, so there is that).

I'm unimpressed with the shipping this year. In years past, Amazon, Toys R Us, etc. have exceeded my expectations with the speed of their shipping. Not so much this year. I did most of my online shopping within a week of Thanksgiving. And most of it still hasn't arrived.

Now comes one of my second favorite parts of holiday prep - wrapping. I love making presents look pretty and I learned the art of making tissue paper flowers this year, so my packages will be festooned with pretty and full flowers and bows. I'm really feeling the festive RED this year, so I have lots of red paper and tissue and ribbons. Very pretty.


How exactly does one wrap a bean bag chair, though? Or a handmade (by someone else) step-stool? These are the challenges I'm facing over the next 2 weeks.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Brazil

A week ago I went and got my first Brazilian wax. My friends, the Luckies, convinced me to do it, I had a coupon for 1/2 off and my husband was positively giddy at the thought. (I declared it part of his Christmas present.)

Holy crap. I mean, wow. I thought I had a high tolerance for pain. Apparently not when it comes to ripping the hairs of my nether-regions out by the roots. Twice I almost told the girl to stop, that I was done and couldn't do any more. I didn't, but I came very close. Hot wax, stinging, etc. not my idea of a good time.

The salon where I had it done was very nice. My esthetician was great, patient, personable, not too friendly, very professional.  She really made the whole experience as pleasant as it truly could be. I kept apologizing for my occasional outbursts, but he assured me that it was completely fine, that I was hardly the worst, and that it was completely understandable to be surprised by the feeling, etc.

Now, my darling husband has been very appreciative ever since. He is enjoying it a lot. Only fair after the near 3-week break we had in November when his illness, my illness, and an untimely and annoying visit from Aunt Flo came sequentially, with no overlap. I made a follow up appointment for after Christmas, but wow, I'm not exactly looking forward to the experience. I'm going to give it the old college try -they say subsequent waxings are much less painful, so I'm certainly hopeful.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Cuteness abounds

Have a rotten headache. I feel like someone punched me in the cheek bone - like the after effects of that punch. It's sort of dull, but really sore. I haven't so much as had a mild head bump, so I'm not sure what that's about. In addition, my head throbs, too. So you are stuck with a cute pic of my kids instead of a post.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Make it up

Well, so much for posting every day. I had some great ideas, too... But Saturday night my husband declared that we were going to bug bomb the house on Sunday and while we were out of the house, we would go to Orlando to see ICE! with the kiddos. Worked out great. (we are having a problem with ticks and our dog and so the bug bomb to was to hopefully obliterate the current issue. Here's hoping.)

Today, I succeeded in making 2 felt crinkley owls for Christmas presents for my future niece/nephew and for my hopefully soon-to-be new BFF's baby girl. They turned out cute. I also cut all the fabric for the plethora of bean abgs I'm making for my own kids. I also want to make this really pretty personalized nightlight for Fuss's best friend, Gracie, but the tutorial calls for an item found at Hobby Lobby and the closest one to me is 90 minutes away. Not happening. I need to go to Michaels and find out if they carry it and if not, I need to go back to the drawing board. My current back-up plan is making doll diapers for both Fuss and Gracie's baby dolls, but I was honestly going to cut out the shape of the diaper out of some extra receiving blankets we had and leave it at that for Fuss (I am not great with my sewing machine and she isn't picky) but it seems tacky to do that for a gift for a friend, doesn't it?

I also finished the calendars for the family yesterday, and ordered our Christmas cards last night from Tiny Prints. I'm quite excited about them!

I'm really proud of myself for all the Made stuff I'm doing this year. I always love making stuff, but I have trouble coming up with something USEFUL that I can make, so I don't end up doing it.



Saturday, December 3, 2011

Christmas-ish

I went out with my mom this morning and we got holiday pedicures. Then we made a few stops at some stores, and I think I finished my Christmas shopping for the kids. (Well, I still need to fill their stockings, but all the presents are bought, I guess.) I hate getting it done so early, because then I see all this other stuff that I want to get them and I can't shouldn't for budgetary purposes.

The kids are driving me bonkers right now. They are just WILD. We finally got the living room sort of back to normal and I started to put up the Christmas tree. And by the time I got all the branches unfurled, I was over it. Geez, I'm becoming a humbug!


Thursday, December 1, 2011

Bulleting

  • We had more time with the nebulizer than I would have liked, but Little Man appears to be good as new. We have a prescription for a puffer and a nebulizer of our very own, plus the albuterol to go with it. We think we may have a recurring problem on our hands, so we're planning to be prepared. (My mom was a Girl Scout Troop Leader. This also explains the large size of my purses and why they are often so full and heavy.)
  • This week we had firsts for both children: Little Man stood up completely by himself - no leaning, no grabbing, no support of any kind. And Fuss colored in the lines of a coloring book picture and also drew her own toddler-stick figures on paper all by herself. I'm quite proud. 
  • I had a migraine on Monday that nearly felled me. It had been SUCH a long time since I'd had one that strong and it came out of no where. And the fact that Little Man wanted to do nothing more than climb on me and smack me in the head ALL DAY LONG really did not help the matter. 
  • My dear friend Kat - who I am hoping will one day be my life-long BFF (she is the mother of Fuss's "best friend") is having a birthday next Wednesday. I want to make her a present - something small, but thoughtful and sweet, as we aren't yet in the "usually exchange presents" place in our friendship. But it's something I want to do. I just don't yet know what to make. Argh. She's a great baker, so treats aren't really ideal (plus, 2 days later we're doing a cookie exchange at MOPS, so...) I kind of want to do some hand-made notecards, but I'm not really sure... seems like it's so old fashioned that I don't know if she'll use them and... I'm still scrounging for ideas. 
  • I'm also looking for ideas for crafts for the kids to make for Christmas. Both at home (Fuss and Little Man) and as a fun get-together project for Fuss, Gracie, and possibly C (my friend Jo's son who is the same age as Fuss and Gracie). 
  • My next Thirty-one Party is next week for my friend M. I'm planning to really play up the Christmas angle -wrapping and decorations accordingly. Hoping for some big sales! 
  • I'm getting my first-ever Brazillian bikini wax tonight. I guess you could say it is an early Christmas present for my husband! I'm a little nervous! 
  • I have this plan to get back into blogging regularly again. My initial idea is to blog every day in December, but that is probably ridiculous considering how busy December usually is - and that my calendar is filling quickly! But I will try!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Oh who knows

I've been wanting to post for days but Little Man is sick (again? still?) and things have been busy, Busy, BUSY! Packing for our trip, dealing with life's usual schedule, etc.

The Little Man seems to be dealing with a form of asthma. The Dr doesn't want to officially diagnose him with such because it can cause problems in the future, so unless it becomes chronic and drastically worse, we have a diagnosis of hyper-something, (for the life of me, I can't remember). He's on oral steroids, nebulizer steroids, and anti-biotics. Poor little guy.

I was going to do a post on how it seems like now that we're not nursing, he isn't all about the Mama anymore, and I may still do it, but when he's sick... he still wants the Mama. It's nice to feel needed, though I hate that he's miserable.

Heading to the mountains tonight - looking forward to some time away, seeing the nieces, my SIL, etc. Fuss has been counting down the days for MONTHS.


Happy Thanksgiving!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Treading water

So I got the bug that the rest of the family had last week. I am grateful that it waited until after my incredibly busy week/weekend to hit me, though, so I won't complain too much.

I had a successful party on Saturday and I am happy to report that I hit my goal for my sales for the first 45 days and I earned my Start Swell kit for FREE. I made over $2000 in personal volume (which isn't to say I earned that much of my own, but I sold that much) and I'm very excited about that. (I just wish that I would get my confirmation email already!!!)

We are now in the throws of preparing for our road trip over Thanksgiving and I feel like I'm up to my ears in clean-but-unfolded laundry.


Thursday, November 10, 2011

Oy with the poodles already!

I've spent the last hour googling things like "vomit, fever, child, 4 days" because my kids are sick. I thought it was a short-lived thing, since Fuss began her fever on Monday night and seemed better by midday yesterday, but her fever is back this afternoon with a vengence and brought along a friend, vomit. Fun times. The Little Man started his fever yesterday and threw up twice this morning, but other than the fever still hanging on and general fussitude, he seems better than his sister, at least for now.

I've got so much going on this week - yesterday was supposed to be the beginning of our non-stop 5 days of business and I've had to cancel a lot. Fuss did feel well enough to go to dance class last night, which was nice since it was Visitor's night and my in-laws all came along and it was the first time they let the parents in the classroom since the first week. So cute.

I turned in my latest Thirty-one order and have hit the 2nd-level threshold for my Start Swell Incentive, so I'm pretty psyched about that. I also got my first "paycheck" today - my commission check was deposited into my account this morning and it is so nice to be earning some $$ again. If I have an average party this weekend (which I'm really hoping, since I'm driving all the way to Orlando to do it), I will hit my top goal for my first 45 days and I will be able to get my second kit for free. Which is awesome.

I've booked another show for December, gotten my in-laws excited about the next 2 months of incentives, potentially booked a way-out-of-town book party for December/January and have a strong lead on 2 January fundraiser deals. I'm feeling confident right now.

But I really, really wish I could make my kids feel better. Fuss keeps telling me how much she misses her daddy - something I understand all too well. And the Little Man can't decide if he wants to be free or to snuggle and seems to whine every time his whim changes.

I have no idea what to do about tomorrow. It's MOPS and I have 3 of the four Mentor Mom's out this month. We have 3 alternates (one of which will be out of town as well) so I was supposed to lead my own Discussion group as well as my regular duties. Plus I really wanted to hear this speaker. But I can't bring my sick kids to the kid care. I don't even like it when other moms bring their kids with the sniffles, so flu-like symptoms seem like a ridiculous conflict. I just don't know what to do!




Tuesday, November 8, 2011

It's beginning to look a lot like....

It's getting to be that time again - and while I tend to prefer to wait until Thanksgiving is over to actually put up my decorations, I have to start thinking about the gift list and the Christmas cards NOW. I prefer the picture Christmas cards, so that means I have to do the kids outfits (finished this weekend!) and get their pictures taken early so that I can find the perfect card to put their beautiful faces on.

And where better to find the perfect card than Tiny Prints? I've used them in the past for birth announcements because theirs are always the absolute best. They have a great selection of Christmas and holiday cards this year. From the classic to the whimsical, from the sweet to the humorous, Tiny Prints has such great options! Now, I just have to figure out which one I'm going to choose - which could take me a while!

This one made me smile.

I loved the look of this one.

this one is sweet.

I could just do a
pic of each kid for this one.

I liked this one for the typography, etc.


And I LOVE this option - an ornament card! They have a whole bunch in lots of styles/layouts, so there are choices, choices!


Sunday, November 6, 2011

Shop 'til he drops

My dear husband went to work for a free-lance client this morning - hoping to get it done and out of the way so we could spend the rest of the day together. Here's hoping.

He also agreed to a shopping trip later today. Poor man doesn't know what he's gotten himself into. My shopping list is as follows:

  • Boots for me. Most likely black, but I also need some sort of brown low-heeled shoe as well. It will depend what I find.
  • Christmas clothes for the kids - have pretty much picked them out online at JCP where my MIL gets a discount. 
  • Overalls for Little Man. April's Henry had on the cutest outfit of a simple white polo and overalls yesterday and I couldn't stop melting every time he toddled past me. Must get some for my Little Man. Probably going to look at Old Navy
  • Warm jackets for the kids. While we're at Old Navy, I plan to check out the jackets. I've seen several online that I like for Fuss (she's only getting one, but I like to have options). We are going to NC for Thanksgiving in less than 3 weeks (!) and the temps are quite cold (for us Floridians) up there in the mountains. Considering we were all shivering when the house dropped to 71 yesterday morning, the temps that are predicted to be somewhere in the realm of "highs in the 50s" are going to demand warmer clothes for both munchkins. 
  • A warm jacket for me. I have a lovely black wool pea coat that is 12+ years old that barely fits. Also my leather jacket that only fits over thin sleeves. I need something that looks good and will keep me warm. 
  • Other warmer clothes for the kids. Fuss has a few things - I bought her jeans 2 weeks ago at the consignment shop and she has some stretch pants that still fit from last year - but mostly she has a few long-sleeved tees and a couple of hoodies and that's it. 
Now don't know that we'll be getting all of these things, of course.  I imagine that list will be quite expensive and we just can't afford to get it all at once. But this is what I'm looking for, so he'll be dragged around the mall for a bit. I'll buy him a Starbucks (which lengthens his shopping tolerance significantly) and I put on sexy undies and have teased him with that info, which also lengthens his tolerance (reward at the end, etc.) so I'm hoping he can deal while I at least look.




Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Musings

Need sleep. Once upon a time, my bedtime was 10PM. It worked for me. But then, I had to get up by 6 at least several mornings a week, so it made a lot of sense. Then, when my job came to an end and I didn't have to get up as early, I started being able to sleep in a little ('til 6:30 or 7) and started staying up later. Over the last 3 days, I've been up past 11, and one of those days it was past midnight. So yeah, I'm tired.

Both kids are coughing these days. Yippee. I might take them to Bible study tomorrow, regardless. I know, I'm terrible. But I missed 2 weeks ago and don't want to miss again, plus it's like my only "adult only" time during the week, usually. But I hate it when other kids infect MY kids in the nursery, so... debating.

I have a party this weekend - very excited. Also nervous. Trying to decide what sort of presentation to do. Also trying to decide if I should do the gambling game or not. It backfired last time, but since none of my in-laws are coming to this one, I should be safe! I will talk it over with my hostess. But since I NEED bookings, I might do it again to see if I can get some more.

My knee started up again last night and this morning both my knee and my hip hurt. I'm falling apart. Ironically, when I read up on the meniscus injury, it mentioned that it happens to athletes (which I am not) and older people (which I apparently am).

Have to go to the store this morning to buy milk and nothing else. I have a whole list of things that I need or will need rather soon, but my husband paid a ton of big bills this week and we have limited funds until Friday. And I need gas. And he needs gas. So you know, trying to only buy the essentials. And maybe a new shirt for this weekend with the cash I've squirreled away.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Remembering/post-Halloween

We took the kids to the Trunk or Treat event at my in-laws church last night. As we were walking up, I started to feel weird, remembering what happened the last time I was there... the last time I took Fuss to this church all dressed up...

You see, that's when I started the heavy spotting. That was when I began losing my baby.

I calmed myself down. I reminded myself that if that baby had lived, I wouldn't have the Little Man. And I wouldn't give him up for anything. It helped that the church had changed a lot in the last 2 years, there were new buildings and a new football field for the attached high school. So the event wasn't laid out the same. It was crowded and the kids were having fun and my MIL and SILs were oohing and ahhing over the kids, etc. I saw my 31 sponsor with her kids. I saw a couple the my husband and I knew in high school (he graduated with my husband, she graduated with me), we saw some really cute and creative costumes... it was a nice evening. But I was exhausted by the end. Physically and emotionally. And I started to wonder if realizing the date had something to do with the way I had been feeling all day - tired, grumpy, like I just wanted to spend the entire day in bed.

While we were there, my knee started acting up and by the time I was driving home, I seriously didn't think I was going to make it all the way home. The pain had gotten horrible. I was limping when I got to my moms. She thinks I might have injured my miniscus (sp?) and I'm going to have to get it checked out, I guess.


I'm remembering my lost baby today. And enjoying the 2 that I have with me.

Friday, October 28, 2011

7 Quick Takes

1. I just submitted my second Thirty-one order. I have officially earned the right to purchase my bonus kit, though I still have 3 weeks to earn it for a discount or for free (which is what I'm hoping for). And I have 2 parties coming up before I'm done with that time, so there is a good chance I'll make it, too! Yay!

2. This weekend looks to be busy - stuff to do, another garage sale, Trick or Treating for the kids and errands to run. Also: my car is acting up and I've had to jump start it the last 3 mornings. Gonna have to look into that. My neighbor was so kind to take care of it for me the last 2 days and we checked it before my husband left for work this morning and he was able to do it.

3. I had what seemed to be a completely random panic attack this morning. No idea what triggered it, but my body got all tense and I was having trouble breathing, etc. The weird thing was my brain was rational the whole time, it was my body that was reacting and I seriously have no idea why. But I'm better now.

4. My mom is going to visit my Gramma this weekend. She's going to be moving closer to us here, into her sister's former condo, and she seems to be wanting to give everything away. She's 84, and she is starting to show some signs of age, but up until about 2 years ago, I always joked that she was healthier and more active than I was. She's survived breast cancer, a car accident (not at all her fault) bad enough that she had to be cut out of her car with the jaws of life, and a fall that broke her shoulder. She has outlived her husband, her younger sister, many of her friends, and even one son. But she still has SO much life left and I kind of can't imagine my world without her.

5. It's not even 9am and I need a nap. My head hurts, my stomach has been bothering me, the kids got us up extra early today, and then the panic attack... I'm seriously ready to go back to bed!

6. My munchkins are going to be a "Beautiful Ballerina" and Linus Van Pelt (from Peanuts) for Halloween. I can't wait for the pictures.

7. I was thinking about wearing this new dress I got recently for Trick or Treating this weekend. It's sort of Spanish Dancer style, but it needs more accessories for me to really pull off that look. It's pretty much plain black, so I wouldn't really look in costume, just over dressed if I wore it plain.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Friendship morphology?

I'm a busy girl this week! Didn't do much on Monday, but yesterday the kids and I got to have lunch with April to chat and for me to deliver her Thirty-one stuff. Today I Fuss has a play date with her best friend, Grace and I get the chance to chat with my friend Kat. Tonight Fuss has dance. Tomorrow, we have Bible study and Friday... we don't have plans, but I'm expecting my order from Thirty-one to arrive, so I'll be spending some time sorting and working out the delivery schedule. I am SO psyched. Saturday we're going to the City of Halloween/Trick or Treat event and having a garage sale in the AM. I know Fuss is excited to T or T.

I was having a conversation with my husband last night about adult friendships. How i always wanted a friend that would be my best friend until we're old and grey and we move into an ALF together or something. I've always felt like the odd one out. The third wheel. It's frustrating. In high school, I was part of 2 close-knit groups, but I was always the odd one when there were pairs. (Freshman year I was part of a foursome that did everything together. J and T were BFFs and H was my BFF, but she had a BFF from where she had lived before. And then she got a boyfriend and I was squeezed out. We remained friends, but weren't as close. Sophomore year it was my friends Liz and Cherry - we've all been friends for eons, but THEY are best friends and I'm just along for the ride. You get the idea/see the pattern.)

I feel like my closest girlfriends around here don't see our friendship as important as I do. And I feel left out. I and I feel stuck. I feel like my lot has already been cast - my adult best friend is K and that's who I'm stuck with, for better or for worse. My husband says that's not so. And if I want to pursue a friendship with Kat, that I should.

Is it immature to continue to label people "best friend" as an adult? And how does that work anyway? I mean, when you're on the playground as a kid, it's easy to say "do you wanna be my friend?" or "my best friend is ______" and it's done, but how does that happen when you're 30?

Monday, October 24, 2011

Busy, busy and emptying out!

It's 9:30 and I have already changed 3 diapers - 2 of them poopy, wiped one poopy bottom, and cleaned up a puddle of pee on the floor and 2 yogurt messes. It's going to be one of THOSE days.

I ignored my business responsibilities this weekend and didn't make any calls that I should have made. But you know, it happens. We had a very successful weekend - had a garage sale on Saturday and got rid of a ton of junk and made some money in the process. We then purged and emptied another section of the main room in the house - so now things around my desk are much more organized and clear. I know one part of the party order I just submitted is already on it's way! (a direct ship order) But that probably means that the rest of the order is coming along, too and I'm so excited to get it!!!

We had a few cool days recently, weather-wise. I actually had the opportunity to put the kids in a few of their warmer clothes and I broke out one of my long-sleeved tees for the garage sale the other day. It's fun to see the new stuff.

I got Fuss's new tights for ballet in the mail and the new Children's Place order I ordered for her - a couple of dancing themed shirts, some leggings, and a tutu-like skirt to wear over leggings. She looks ADORABLE in it. And she LOVES it, so score one for mom. The Little Man has a couple of hoodies that are keeping him warm and I got both of the items I had to have for their Halloween costumes this weekend, too. (Her new tights have an opening in the bottom so that they can be peeled back off her foot when she's not wearing her dancing shoes. Reminds me of the footless tights the more advanced students in my own ballet school wore - I was so jealous. I thought they were SO cool.) But I'm hoping that these are more comfortable for her - they seem like they are WAY better quality, so here's hoping they last longer.


I am loving the need to purge all the junk and unused items in my house. My husband is very supportive. I even sold a table that I had an emotional attachment to, but was really just taking up space in my home at the garage sale. It wasn't useful to me, and when someone made me a good offer, I took it. My husband was surprised, but pleased. I am just so over having all this stuff taking up space. I haven't purged all my knick knacks yet, but things are thinning out.

I also sold my Christmas wreath at the garage sale - which means I get to buy a new one!!! I'm sort of psyched about that!



Thursday, October 20, 2011

Bits and pieces on Thursday

I was SO looking forward to submitting my first order for Thirty-one, but OMG, it is taking forever. Now, that is due to some mistakes by my customers (someone ordered something that I realized she didn't actually want and now I'm waiting on her to decide what to do about it...) and my mom not bringing me a check last night... so you know, not entirely the company's or my own fault, but wow. It's a little time consuming. I tried to do it during the Little Man's morning nap - thinking I could also get in my shower. Didn't happen. I wasn't even done by the time he got up. Oops.

Fuss is still incredibly fussy about the pain/sores in her mouth. I get that, I know it must hurt horribly, but wow - I am so sick of it already. Probably makes me a bad mom - I'm really trying to be sympathetic to her, but I really hate whining. So it's getting on my nerves. My nerves which are already fried due to hormones, lack of sleep, and my own stresses.

I woke up this morning with this AWFUL headache. I can only describe it as "my brain hurting." It was all in the top, front part of my head, but behind my face, all inside my head, not sinusy, but in the inner part of my head. Thankfully, an Excedrin Migraine and another hour of sleep seemed to help, but I can still feel it there, lurking behind the painkiller. Good times.


Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Sick Fuss

So Fuss is sick. She has some sort of viral infection in her mouth - lots of little sores, sore throat, swollen tongue, hurts to chew/swallow/eat. Mild fever. Was thinking Hand, foot, mouth, but no rash on her body, it's all confined to her mouth. She wailed all night long in her sleep. I got very little sleep. Poor thing. She's wiped out. And miserable. And she is hardly talking and when she does, she does so with her jaw clenched shut like that's going to help the tongue/swallow factor (no idea if it does, but that's what she's doing nonetheless.

Meanwhile, tired, exhausted mama (who hasn't gotten a good night's sleep in a week because of various reasons) is also menstrual and stressed, etc. Our plans for the rest of the week are shot - because she'll be contagious for several more days and can't be around other kids. But we'll make it. But I confess, my plan for keeping my sanity is to allow a lot of TV again. (I've been trying to cut back.) Ah well, we'll go back to limiting it when she's better. Right now she's a lump on the couch.

My party is closing today or tomorrow. I think I'm going to end up with some pretty good totals, so that's happy! I have 2 open book parties right now and a display (sort of a casual party) at a MOPS event this weekend. My schedule is starting to fill up and I'm loving it.

I'd like a nap, but the baby fell asleep in the car and refused to wake up when we got home. So I have a feeling about the time I get Fuss to lay down for a rest, he'll be getting up. Ah well. I've got lots of work to do, I shouldn't be sleeping anyhow.


Tuesday, October 18, 2011

10 on Tues: Vacationing

1. You’re packing for a week long vacation, do you pack ahead of time or wait until the last possible minute to pack?
I start the planning part ahead of time. I make lists, and if it's clothes that I won't need in the meantime, I start some small piles of stuff, etc. But mostly I do the bulk of the packing in the last 24 hours.

2. Are you a light or heavy packer?
Somewhere in the middle. I hate not having the clothes/extras that I want, so I tend to bring 2 sets of PJs (one for if it's cold, one for if it's warm), tons of extra undies, extra shirts, etc.

3. What are your favorite road trip snacks?
Goldfish, pretzels, and Coca Cola

4. Do you take any reading material along?
I always take a book or two or my Kindle, but I get carsick if I read in the car, so it's for any downtime once we're at our destination or on a plane...

5. Do you prefer to drive or fly to your vacation destination?
Depends on how long it would take. If it's less than a day and I get a whole week, then I'm fine w/ driving. But if it's a really long trip, then I am all about the airplane!

6. What is your favorite time of the year to take your vacation?
Probably summer - so I get out of the sweltering heat of FL.

7. Where is your favorite place to vacation?
North Carolina mountains, New Orleans, St Augustine.

8. You are vacationing in the mountains, what is your favorite thing to do while there?
Shop. :) As a kid, we'd go to all these cute little towns and look in the quaint little shops. I loved it. Also, I loved checking out the historical areas nearby. We used to go to NC every summer and I loved Old Salem Village, Cherokee, The Biltmore Estate... it was great.

9. You are at the beach for your vacation,  do you like to take it easy on the beach or play all day in the water?
Take it easy. Partially because I burn easily and hate being out in the sun very much and partially because I'm not really a beach person in general.

10. While your on vacation do you prefer to eat out every night or cook some of your own meals?
Depends on how long we're gone, but I love to eat out in general. My husband and I do a lot of lunches/breakfasts by getting stuff at the grocery that we can store in our rooms (fresh fruit, crackers, etc.) and then eat out in nicer restaurants at night. I love sampling the local cuisine.

For more, visit Chelsea, here.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Follow up

So, the party was a success, overall. My "booking game" backfired since the only 3 people who drew the "book a party" cards were my 3 in-laws who probably won't do it, or at best, will only do a book party. But oh well. I did get one booking during the night and another call from a friend who couldn't make it saying she wanted to book a party, so there's that.

I had several last minute cancellations - including one from one of my closest friends, a lame "something came up" text 30 minutes before the party started. And several no-shows. But all my in-laws showed up (and they were only maybes) and one friend brought a friend, so... overall we did good. The sales will put me more than half way to my minimum Start Swell goal. And I have 2 more official parties before that deadline and a book party closing and an informal showing... so I think I will totally make it!

I have follow-ups to do this week. I have to check in with those who said they were going to do outside orders and haven't yet followed through and those who took the catalog home with them to decide. I feel like I got a good start and now have some things to follow up on. They claim the key to success is 3 (calls per day) 2 (parties per week) 1 (recruit per month, though I don't care so much about the recruits at this point. I won't turn them down, but I'm trying not to make a big push at this point.) But up until now I've felt like I would be completely cold-calling people if I called them up and were talking about booking or ordering.

My 2 best friends didn't show up. But my 2 oldest friends did, despite the fact that they both had to come from other counties (and one of them drove 2 hours each way to be here.) I got really upset about the one at the last minute and I'm sort of pissed about the other in general. How can someone who calls herself your best friend just not make ANY effort to support you in something that you're really excited about? I don't get it.




Friday, October 14, 2011

Quick Takes

1. I got peed on at 4:45am today. It was not the start to the day I was hoping for.

2. The good news is that my day did get better.

3. I hurried around this morning and got ready for MOPS which was fun and mostly snag-free. I got some feedback from my church friends regarding the party tomorrow - and even have another outside order coming in.

4. I had a chiropractor appointment this afternoon to (hopefully) fix the problem I was having in my back. When he tried to adjust me, it didn't work right or something, so he made me sit with ice on my back for 5+ minutes. It was COLD. But then the adjustment seemed to work and I'm hoping for some improvement.

5. I'm sort of psyched about tomorrow. I've been practicing more than I would have if this were a school project (not that that is saying much - I was known to do very well on off-the-cuff oral presentations in high school, but I'm seriously out of practice, so I think it's best to practice.) and I have a written opening and tons of notes. I really think it should go well.

6. Neither kid got more than about 20 minutes worth of napping today because of all our running around. I'm looking forward to a good nights' sleep tonight for the first time all week. (the baby has been waking in the 5 o'clock hour and today went even earlier (see Quick Take #1) and I've been yawning all day long.

7. My Fuss has a best friend. It makes my heart happy to see them together, how they play together so well and how they love each other. It also makes me happy that her BFF's mom is a good friend of mine. So play dates? They're awesome. :)


Thursday, October 13, 2011

"Mastering" the art of sales and early rising

I'm starting to figure out how to do this Direct Sales thing. You have to be friendly and a little pushy. But not too pushy or you'll be off-putting. So you make extra phone calls. And you send extra emails. And you mention your party/business/event slightly more often than is natural. And you bring it up. And up. And up.

Yesterday, I made a couple of phone calls to the people who said "maybe" but I knew were leaning against it. I left upbeat messages about how much I was looking forward to seeing them at my party. I sent emails and FB messages to others who hadn't RSVPed. I implied that I was assuming that they were coming. (because isn't that what you have to assume when someone doesn't RSVP? Otherwise if they show, you don't have enough stuff/food/supplies for them.)

I'm up to somewhere near 20 if all the maybes come and people bring the friends that they have mentioned they will be bringing.

There are also about 10 more people I haven't heard from. So things are going well.

_______________________________________________
The baby keeps waking in the 5 o'clock hour every morning. Mostly, he'll go back to sleep if we pull him into bed with us, but then I don't get as good sleep as I do when he's not there. He's gotten big and he twitches. And the last two mornings, my brain has kicked in and I can't go back to sleep. I'm sitting here at 8:20 and my eyes are SO heavy and I'm sleepy. But I've been up for 3 hours and I have Bible study this morning (which reminds me, I have to make the kids a sack lunch for today, so I'd better wrap this up.) so I can't go back to bed, even if I wanted to.


Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Looking Up, Business-wise

I visited my husband's work yesterday with the kids and passed out some more of my business cards and left a catalog and order forms with my husband. We had invited several people to the party already and some mentioned that they would be coming and some mentioned that they would have outside orders. I also got an outside order from an old friend who is going out of town, so that's 2 before the party even happens! Things are looking up.

If all the confirmed and all the maybes show up, I'll have 15 people attending plus up to 5 outside orders that have already been mentioned to me! I'm psyched. I'm sending the packet for a book party today and I have a casual showing next weekend as well.

One of my closest friends works with my husband and I asked her yesterday if she was coming. She told me that one of her friends from the office had said "are you going? Because if you go, I'll go," and M answered "well, she's my friend so I kind of have to." I think she was joking around, but I'm finding it hard to stop thinking about those words the way they COULD be interpreted. She's one of my closest friends. We've grown very close over the last 3 years and she's dealing with some major things in her life and I've supported her through thick and thin lately. I would have thought she would want to support me, would want to encourage me. Because that would be MY attitude if the situation were reversed.

Meanwhile, my best friend still hasn't committed to coming, technically. And then she casually mentioned that her step-son's mom is also starting out selling the same stuff and I'm a little livid. Not at the step-son's mom - because she can do what she wants, I'm certainly not the only person selling this stuff! - but if my best friend doesn't show up to my party and does buy something from her, I'm going to be really, really pissed. But, I'm not going to borrow trouble, so I'm just going to move forward and see what happens.


I'm feeling very encouraged right now. I feel like things are moving forward and things are coming a long. I feel like this just might work after all. And I am SO excited to be doing something new, something I believe in. I'm ready. I'm still a little nervous, but I seriously think I can pull it off.


Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Ten on Tuesday: All About Pasta


1. Red Sauce or White Sauce?
White, but many of the cream sauces mess with my stomach unless they are literally freshly homemade. So I eat plenty of red or butter sauces, too, and I LOVE them.

2. Do you prefer pasta you can twirl or stab?
I like twirls, but I'm really pretty equal opportunity on my pasta. My husband uses the term "evil pasta" for those which you can't twirl and don't often stay on your fork easily. He hates penne, for example.

3. Baked or boiled?
Boiled.

4. Do you like meat in your sauce or do you kick it vegetarian style?
It depends. I always hated my mom's "meat sauce" spaghetti as a kid, but I love some meal that includes meat - I just don't like it to be equal parts meat and sauce.

5. Where have you had your very best pasta ever?
Ooh, boy, that's a tough one. I have no idea. My husband makes this stuff we call "O"-fredo sauce (because it's like having a little orgasm in my mouth!) so maybe here at home?

6. What is your favorite pasta dish?
I love a good seafood pasta in a lemon butter sauce.

7. Do you serve meatballs when you make spaghetti or just do a meat sauce?
I don't do meat sauce. We either do meatballs or italian sausage.

8. Why type (rice, whole wheat, egg, etc) of noodles do you use?
I love spinach noodles and egg noodles, but more often than not, we use whatever is cheap and on sale or BOGO, so it's pretty standard white flour pasta.

9. What type of meats or vegetables do you put in your sauce?
I love mushrooms in pasta sauce. We do a lot of sea food and Italian sausage in our pastas. I also make an aribiatta sauce with lots of peppers and mushrooms and onion, too which is great!

10. Do you make a “Sunday gravy” to use throughout the week or do you just open a jar of whatever and heat it up? (No judgment on this one!)
I don't make Sunday gravy, but I nearly always doctor a jar of sauce to make our regular dinner sauces. I only use it straight out of the jar if I'm microwaving it to put on some lunchtime noodles or something.

Check out Chelsea and the rest here to see others' answers.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Weekend in review

We had a nice weekend, full of family time and productivity. We did another "unplugged" Sunday, which was nice, but also... by the end of the day I was really ready for some TV or a movie. I have really cut back on my own TV watching this week, so by Sunday night I was ready. But we stuck to our plan and I made it through the evening without TV. But I am starting to think that Fuss thinks it's a punishment instead of a break from the norm or whatever. We're trying to explain it, but...

I got my consultant kit from Thirty-one and I'm psyched! I also got my new business cards and labels, so I'm in business! My Kick Off Party is this Saturday and I'm a little nervous and also very excited. I've gotten a few more responses, some yeses and some nos, but at least more people are responding. And my SIL LB (from NC) has already given me an order, so I've officially had my first sale! And I've had a couple more people tell me they will check out the website and a few more commit to some orders. And as long as I can get a couple of bookings, I'm good.

We have another busy week ahead - MOPS, my Bible study, and party prep, of course. I have to assemble my customer, hostess, and recruiting packets and I need to continue to purge all the JUNK in my house for the garage sale we are having in 2 weeks. I am DONE with having all this STUFF in my house and we've been making some nice dents lately. I am just ready to be organized and it's frustrating to not have it be done with a snap of my fingers. Of course, I've been collecting things for 31 years, it's very likely to take at least SOME time to sort and purge!


Thursday, October 6, 2011

Loyalty

You know, it's funny, my closest friends - the ones I confide in, the ones who come to me when they need someone to complain to, the ones who I spend the most time with... they haven't so much as RSVPed to my party. I take that back, one of them did, but it was a no. None of them have offered to host a party and a couple of them have completely ignored every mention and invitation I have made/sent, etc. But my 2 oldest friends? The ones I met in Kindergarten and 1st grade, respectively? Yeah, they're coming. One is even driving across the state (a good 2+ hours) to come and she has even said she'd be interested in hosting a party if I was willing to drive that far to do one. (I am.) I find it interesting to see how people react to their friends when they are asked to do something for them like this. You would think that my BEST FRIEND would want to help me and support me, as I have done for her for years and years. But she can't even leave her son's t-ball game a little early to be there for me in this.

I know I keep complaining about this, but I feel like it's incredibly rude and stressful to have so many people ignoring the RSVP request on the invitation. I have made it as painless as possible (email! FB!) - I mean, really, you don't even have to DO anything. Click a flipping button.


Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Nothnig to write about 10 on Tues

1. How do you take your coffee?
Light and sweet

2. Do you prefer soft or crispy chocolate chip cookies?
Soft! As a matter of fact, my husband over-cooked our cookies the other night and it has made it SO much easier to resist them. I am unimpressed by crispy cookies.

3. Do you wear a belt everyday?
Nope.

4. What is your favorite color combination?
Brown and _____. I feel like brown goes with so much. Right now I'm really focusing on brown and sort of a light, aqua blue.

5. Do you like sour candy?
Sometimes. Used to love it.

6. How often do you do laundry?
Several times a week.

7. Did you ever wear braces?
Yes.

8. Are you good at Roman Numerals?
Not really. Only through the 100s.

9. What is your favorite form of social media?
Facebook, I'd guess.

10. How do you feel about chin dimples?
Lift a cleft chin? Neutral

For more ToT click here

Monday, October 3, 2011

Red hats

My great-aunt passed away last week and today was her funeral. It was a very nice service and all my cousins were there (sans the one who is away at school out of state) even my cousin W who I often jokingly refer to as "my deadbeat cousin" because he often seems to forget he has an extended family even though he lives within a mile of my mom and me. My Aunt Jean was a very friendly, fun-loving, and flamboyant lady so there were lots of people and lots of colorful flowers all over. It was so nice for her children to see how much she was loved.

My usually tough uncle was there and I heard him let out a sob when he stood by the casket, which surprised me. I guess you never really know a person and how they'll react to a family loss. I don't even want to know what he'll do when my Gramma passes - I don't even want to think about it, really.

We saw the movie Courageous over the weekend and both my husband and I were really moved by it and it's message. We have spent the bulk of the weekend discussing the changes we need to make to the way we live and the way we parent. If you have the opportunity, I highly recommend that you see this movie.

I'm increasingly nervous that I'm not going to have a good turn out for my Kick Off party - I haven't heard back from anyone else yet (though my Gramma did tell me that she is planning to come down for it!) and when I mentioned my new endeavor to my dad over the weekend, he didn't seem that supportive or encouraging, which sort of surprised. I would have thought that he would be all about me trying to do something to earn some money, etc. but he seemed a little sarcastic about it. Ah well.






Friday, September 30, 2011

7 (Neuroticly Obsessive) Quick Takes

  1. I'm starting to freak out. I have only gotten regrets from my "Please RSVP" note on my party invitation. Granted, even then, it's only been 3 of them and I invited 50 people, but still. AND! My "cousin" (my mom's best friend's daughter - she's "aunt Sharon" to me, so "cousin") is hosting a Thirty-One party the week before. We don't have a lot of friends in common, so that's not an issue, but she was one of my top prospects for both coming AND hosting a party, so that's out. 
  2. And I keep finding these amazing deals for great little things I can put in my hostess gifts, door prizes, and "bring a friend" gifts. But I really think I should stop buying now. I don't even know what all I have at the moment - I need to stop, take stock and put the gifts together to see what I need still and yet, I have all this other stuff that is a higher priority for RIGHT NOW. 
  3. I also keep thinking of cute little ideas to MAKE for said gifts, but then I'm like will people actually like them? I mean, every single one of these things is something I'd like to get, but I am not everyone. And I have a weird obsession with paper and journals and notepads, so there's that, too. And part of what I'd like to promote with my shows is the opportunity to help with organization, so do little things I've made (decorative candles, framed inspirational quotes) really help support that?
  4. What if this doesn't work out? What if I've spent time and money and effort and I fail from the get go? I know that these types of things are not always "easy" since you are only successful if you can continually book parties and you will quickly run out of friends to help you out. 
  5. And that's the other thing. My closest friends? None of them have offered to host a party. I'm going to have to get a little more pushy and I don't really want to! My BF, K, even told me she wanted to do a Pampered Chef party soon, so she couldn't host a party for me. Seriously?
  6. I wanted to do some "bigger" gifts as well, like Starbucks giftcards, and even a couple of products (smaller ones, obviously) from Thirty-One, but I don't really know how to go about getting the freebies since I already placed my big order (I should have thought of this ahead!) and I'm assuming that I will have to send in a minimum order once I get started officially. I wish I didn't have this time limit hanging over my head and I could go ahead and sign my contract NOW. But then, since I'm freaking out about it a little, maybe that's not a good idea, either...
  7. Loyal reader Jessica asked "What is Thirty-One?" in the comments the other day. And I'm happy to explain! Thirty-One is a great little company that sells bags, totes, organizational items, as well as gifts. Many of the items can be personalized. Their selection is fun and functional and it is set up as an in-home product party type of of scenario and their employees/consultants are "independent contractors" so they have the opportunity to work for themselves and be flexible in their schedules. (Think Mary Kay, Party Lite, Pampered Chef etc.)


Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Never-ending to do list

My first party - my own Kick Off - is scheduled for October 15th, about 2.5 weeks away. I am nervous. I've heard some interest from friends and my husband's co-workers, but my mind constantly flashes back to the first product party I ever hosted in my early 20's (not as a consultant, just as a host) that was Party Lite and only my mom and my sister attended. I was heartbroken. It all worked out in the end (your hostess rewards were based on both sales and getting another booking, so I just booked another party for a date when more people could come), but I remember setting up the house and getting all excited and then the feeling of no one coming... it was bad. So that is my fear, that no one will come. I haven't really started to fret over the whole "what am I going to say to these people?" issue yet, but it's there in the background of my mind!

I've purchased a handful of things to help me present - a black sheet (in lieu of a tablecloth), purse holders, prizes, hostess gifts, etc. I'm still trying to find a few more things and I'm going to be hitting up a great sale/coupon at Michaels this weekend (20% off the whole order, including sale items!) for a bunch of organizational-like calendars and organizers I found. I really want to focus on the organizational aspects of these products. I feel like that is so needed in this society and in my own life that I know others can relate.


The invites are being mailed out today, though several of the hand-delivered ones have already been handed out. My best friends are getting theirs tomorrow when I will be seeing them anyway.

I'm both nervous and excited about this. I'm also a little nervous since I just found out that one of the friends I was counting on to book wants to put off scheduling it for awhile because she had already committed to hosting a Partylite party in October. So I really only have a couple of bookings (2) plus my own.

But I feel like it's going to work out okay. I hope.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Tummy Drama

I have gastrointestinal issues. I always have. So there's often at least a little tummy trouble around this house. But over the past few days, my tummy has been the least troubled.

Both kids got sick over the weekend - seemingly random, both threw up during the night on Friday night/Saturday morning and no one got much sleep. I blamed it on a bad bottle of apple juice, but then on Sunday, my husband started getting sick and spent about 12 hours near a bucket or in the bathroom. He got little sleep and once his stomach stopped purging, he slept most of the day.

The baby had more troubles over the weekend, but seemed better by yesterday. Fuss seemed fine over the weekend, but started with troubles (not vomiting, though) yesterday. And last night... oh dear. She repeatedly woke screaming in pain. I can't tell you how I felt when I heard her - it was awful. And she was so tired so it took forever to calm her and get her to stop wailing. She was hurting so much and we're fairly positive it was simply a ton of gas built up in her belly. She feels so much better this morning, but slept in until 8:30.

Here's to hoping that the tummy drama is over around here.

Monday, September 26, 2011

After some (minor) drama in getting it moving, I finally got my Thirty-One order submitted last night. For $150 I got nearly $500 in product once I factored in my Hostess rewards (credit and half-priced items) and it's a great business investment PLUS I get a bunch of fun, useful stuff! Yay!

And then this morning I realized that I should have ordered a pen case to hold all my pens, but I'll get that the next time around.

Anyhow, I am so psyched about this. And part of my excitement is that my husband is also really excited for me. He sat down the other night and said, "I have something I need to say," and I thought he was going to tell me to slow down, not get so caught up, quit buying the stuff until my contract was signed (I've been searching for and buying hostess gifts, supplies, etc.) But he told me that he was really excited for me, he was so happy to see me doing something that was making me happy, that he was proud of me for taking the leap and making steps to do this, etc. He pointed out that 3 months ago, I wouldn't have (because of the way I was feeling, etc.) and he's so happy that things seem to be moving forward. He's such a supportive husband! I am blessed and lucky to have him.

On the other hand, some of my excitement is tempered by the fact that no one else from my initial list of "might possibly book a party" friends has offered to do so! I sent out the email Thursday, I think, and while I do have 4 shows committed (the minimum to sign up) I was hoping to get at least 2 more before my big kick off. At this point, I'd be happy with one. But it will happen! I'm (somewhat) confident!


Thursday, September 22, 2011

Grrr. Argh. and then something good.

Last night I was stressed, grumpy, achy, frustrated. I don't know if it was hormonal, chemical, exhaustion or what. I took a bath. I picked up my Kindle and soaked for awhile. It helped my aches. But as I went to sit up, I put my hand on the soap holder and ended up pulling it down on top of me. So there's a whole in the wall of our shower. And a leak in the faucet. And I think I'll just go sit down and cry now, thanks.

I had a rough morning. I was rushing around and the baby was fussing (his favorite thing to do these days) and Fuss was dawdling and I had to go to Bible study... I didn't want to go. I was grumpy about the subject matter (Genesis/Creation - something I've studied a million times through school) but I really wanted to have this extra time with my friend Kat and it IS 90 minutes of free babysitting while I get to talk intelligently with other adults, so I made myself go. I had to stop at 7/11 to get a cup of Coke. (because of course, I didn't have any caffeine in the house!) I also didn't have my "homework" done - so I had to rush in the car and finish answering at least some more of the questions.

Once I got there, I still felt so rushed and pushed and my head was pounding (lack of caffeine) and I just didn't want to be there. BUT once the discussion started... I got into it. I got passionate about it and it was really good. I took notes during the lecture that followed (never a strong suit of mine in high school or college, but at least I won't be tested on this!) and it was really good.

At the end of the lecture, I picked up the kids and made plans for a play date next week with Kat. I struggled to get the kids in the car (diaper bag, bag with my stuff, baby who doesn't walk, toddler who does...) and came home. I arrived home and settled the kids down (Little Man missed his nap this morning and consequently fell asleep in the car, so I plopped him in his crib when we got home) and found an email from my friend April (thanks again!) who told me she was willing to do a party for my new business! I have my 4 parties now, so I can get started! That really helped my mood.

I ate my carryout sushi (from last night) and my dad came over to look at the bathroom catastrophe. I'm hoping the rest of the day continues to improve! I have cake class tonight, but I need to dump this headache before then, ideally.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Recipe!

I am starting a business - as a consultant for Thirty-One Gifts so I've been very distracted of late getting things ready! But! Today, I have a recipe to share that I found on Pinterest and it is yummy, yummy! (I promise, I made some myself. I'm also already plotting how to get a mini-loaf pan to give this stuff away for Christmas gifts, too!) So I thought I'd share in lieu of a real, post!


Cinnamon Sugar Bread
Ingredients
1 cup white sugar
1/3 cup white sugar (divide it out, as you need some for the batter and some for the "filling")
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup white sugar
1 egg, beaten
1 cup milk
1/3 cup vegetable oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease a 9x5 inch loaf pan.
In large bowl combine flour, baking powder, salt and 1 cup sugar. Add egg, milk, and oil to flour mixture.
Stir until just moistened.
Pour half of the batter into pan.
Sprinkle with cinnamon and 1/3 cup sugar (you can mix together cinnamon and sugar before hand, I didn't though I just sprinkled away).
Cover with remaining batter.
Top with more cinnamon/sugar if desired.
Bake in preheated oven for 45 to 50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into center of the loaf comes out clean.
Let cool in pan for 10 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.
Wrap in foil and let sit overnight before slicing (I sliced off pieces then wrapped the rest of the loaf in foil).


Monday, September 19, 2011

Weekend Review

I went to a product party this weekend. Technically, my mom and I were co-hosting. But, while I'd seen the products before (and even owned a couple, thanks to gifts from my mom) I'd never been to one of the parties before. My mom kept telling me that I should consider selling this stuff. And now I am. I will be signing up to be a consultant with this company - more on this later. But I'm very excited. I'm just nervous. I know I can get up in front of people and talk about the products, but my concern about these things is always - will I get more bookings? And once I've hit up all my friends to book parties, then what? My mom can and will only host so many, you know?

I took Fuss to her first movie-theater movie this weekend. They did a short-term re-release of The Lion King in theaters to promote the release of the Blu-Ray version coming out. I hadn't seen it in theaters before (on video, but missed it in the theater) so it was a new experience for me as well. She loved it. She loved the theater experience, the popcorn, the seats, the big screen. She behaved wonderfully and excitedly asked "can we see it again?" as the credits rolled and the lights came up at the end.

We had a bad week last week here at Casa Fuss. Fuss has just been very difficult lately and the tantrums and the disobedience have gotten out of control. Things improved over the weekend with the constant monitoring/teaching of both parents on her, but between that and my PMS last week (I started on Friday) I think we have found the reason for my horrible week last week. I no longer feel as if I need to sell her to science, so things are looking up!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

I need this to stop

I feel like I'm living off of caffeine and chocolate and the occasional handful of goldfish. I'm not eating. I'm not hungry. I eat dinner because my husband is home and it's the thing to do.

I've had a few really bad days. Today I wasn't so much depressed as anxious. Where'd that come from? Sure, I was walking into a new experience (Bible study with a friend at a new church) but seriously, I felt like I was having a panic attack. I was tense and started getting hot flashes... it was so weird.

I want this to be over. I don't want to deal with this any more. I am tired all the time. I don't seem to ever get enough sleep. I just want to sleep.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Ranting about nothing

Yesterday was a good day. Today not so much.

I went out to the craft store yesterday and got inspiration for homemade Christmas presents and bought some water color paints for Fuss. She had a blast painting this morning. And things were okay until she got real whiny and demanding today and then I just SNAPPED. My house is a disaster. You would not believe the mess/chaos that is all around me and I just... don't know where to begin. I hate it.

I got lost in Pinterest and Bejeweled this morning to "hide" and I hate that, too. I hate that I don't want to talk to my kids when I'm stressed. I hate that I get upset with them over accidents (like when the baby knocked over the water color water this morning because we hadn't put the paints away yet (she was finishing the painting she was doing when he got up from his nap) and I yelled. I feel like there is nothing good in me right now. Which is crazy, because up until about 7:30 yesterday things were peachy and happy around here. What the heck is wrong with me?

It's like I just don't want to do this anymore.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Whirlwind out of the east

Raise your hand if you assumed I forgot I had a blog... no one? Oh, that's probably because all my readers have disappeared due to my unscheduled hiatus.

This is going to have to be quick, because I'm on a time-crunch, but here's my last few weeks in bullets with a few pics thrown in to help with the monotony:

  • Little Man's birthday: he turned one, he had a party (which went very well!) and he got dedicated. He had his well-check (22 lbs, 5oz, 29.25" tall) and is starting to pull up and stand while leaning on things. We lowered his crib, he got 2 more teeth (at once - he's up to 6 now) and he got his first pair of Stride Rite shoes. And even those seem like they might still be too narrow.



  • I got my haircut. I loved it in the salon, though I was a little surprised as she kept cutting away at my hair, but it's cute, it's at least a little different (as I told her that I had had the same haircut since I was 4 and wanted something different without sacrificing my versatility). I loved it, I hated it, I tolerated it and I've embraced it. (All in 8 days!) I'm currently rocking the semi-big hair look that reminds me of my mom in her 30s, but hey! I'm in my 30s. I can pull it off. :)
  • Fuss: is still fussy, she's 3, she's a whirlwind of cuteness, sass, and trouble, but I love her. She began dancing school (ballet/tap/tumbling) this week and is loving it.

  • I'm on the MOPS committee this year, so that's kept me busy. We have our kick-off tomorrow and I'm already worn out. But it's fun, it gets me socializing more, gets me active at church, and lets me socialize.

  • I'm still taking cake decorating classes. I love them and I'm about to start one that focuses mostly on fondant. Yay!

  • Our street has been flooding regularly lately due to some drainage issues and my husband unfortunately flooded his car last week. Thanks to an old friend who used to be a mechanic, it is running once again and all seems to be well. We haven't reported it to the insurance company, so I'm thinking it won't show up on the record for when we need to resell it. Not that we're planning to do so any time soon, but nonetheless.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Thirty-one

So, I had my birthday on Tuesday. It started out great, but wasn't quite as wonderful by the middle. Three-year-olds and nearly-one-year-olds don't care that it's Mommy's Special Day and that she should get treated extra nice. The Little Man did sleep in until 7, so that was nice, though.

I'm struggling again with mood swings and anger and anti-social tendencies. The several nights of little sleep recently haven't helped, I'm sure. (We stayed up WAY too late at my party and got up early, and then Little Man has been teething and has some sniffles and isn't sleeping well the last few days). But I almost canceled my annual Mother/Daughter pedi-and-lunch-and-shopping trip yesterday because I didn't want to go out. Now THAT is strange for me.

So I'm hoping I'll start getting more sleep and things will even out, but if not, back to the Dr. I'll go. No fun, but neither is feeling so out of control.


Monday, August 22, 2011

Birthday weekend


Whew! We had SUCH a busy, fantastic weekend.

We spent the morning on Saturday getting ready for the rest of it. Daddy Fuss fixed the car (which ended up being a PITA, but it got done and all is well) and went grocery shopping and ran the have-to errands I hadn't been able to take care of yet. I finished packing and tried to clean up some more so that my mom and Gramma wouldn't have as much mess to deal with. I failed, but it was at least BETTER, so there's that.

We left the house around 3 and drove down to the beach. Over 4th of July we had left my husband's sunglasses at Cherry's mom's house, and Cherry just announced that she is pregnant (!) so I wanted to deliver some maternity clothes for her. We checked into the hotel and ended up in an upgraded room with a view and a little more privacy than originally expected and began to get dressed for our evening out. Our best friends picked us up (there were parking issues at the hotel) and we drove the throwing distance to the restaurant (I was wearing heels and there was a LOT of traffic, so we were lazy and drove instead of walked.) We had an excellent dinner and I got my Espresso Martini (theirs are the BEST thanks to Van Gogh Double Espresso Vodka - yum!)

My cake turned out beautifully and delicious and I will certainly make the ganache topping again some time. Everyone loved the look of the cake, so I was happy that my second attempt turned out so nice.

We had a fun time with our friends - a few things got out of hand, we all drank too much, stayed up too late and the other 2 guys (not my husband) got into an argument that could potentially end up being really awkward in the future. But all in all, things went well and we had fun.

My mom and Gramma cleaned and scrubbed while they watched the kids and also set up the wading pool in the back yard for them. My fridge is spotless for the first time in a year (we had something very sticky spill and it was really a mess in there, but I didn't have the time or energy to deal with it) and and while both of them were exhausted by the time they were done, (my mom reported taking a much-needed nap Sunday afternoon) they all had fun.

The Little Man's face lit up and he practically swam across the floor to see me when we returned. He does good on the cup and bottle, but he misses his Mama Milk, too. He fell asleep in my arms after emptying my full-to-overflowing breast and slept for 2 hours.

We attended a friend's 1-year-old's birthday party on Sunday afternoon. It was fun, though I was a bad mama and forgot sunscreen and the Little Man got a mild sunburn on his back from being exposed while in the wading pool. It's so funny because I was SO good about coating Fuss when she was younger assuming that with her pale parents she would burn easy. Nope. My girl tans. And she tans beautifully. It's sort of amazing. She gets beautiful tan lines from a mild exposure to the sun, even with sunscreen on.

April gave me a bunch of clothes that she has shrunk out of (she looks amazing. I'm somewhat inspired) and I ended up with practically a whole new wardrobe. I had almost no dressy clothes (like nice pants and skirts, etc.) so her work wardrobe really filled in some gaps in mine. I am incredibly grateful!

We had a pleasant and quiet evening at home and my husband made dinner and it was great.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Accomplishments and plans

Ugh. My son is having more separation anxiety issues lately. And when I say separation anxiety, I swear it's like he doesn't ever want to be put down, let alone have me or whomever walk away from him. At this age, Fuss was walking so she constantly wanted to get down and run around - she had to be really tired to even snuggle with me.

Anyhow, we cleaned out our garage this weekend and I am SO happy with the progress we made! We have it all organized by category, and we know where everything is. I finally got the Christmas decorations box out of my bedroom. My laundry room is under control and I can walk in there without stepping on things. We'll be having a garage sale within another month (every weekend is booked from now until then with birthday stuff) and I am SO excited to get rid of STUFF. There is also a HUGE pile of garbage out by the road. Yay for dumping it!

My birthday party is at the end of the week. I'm going to be baking a lot on Friday - making the cake, filling it and then covering it with homemade chocolate ganache. Doesn't that sound incredible? I think so.

I have a bunch of work to do on my kitchen, I have to make the icing and color it for my class tomorrow and I have a Steering Committee for MOPS tonight (which I am nervous about because I have had NO LUCK finding group leaders) and I want to organize a play date this week for Fuss at the bounce-house place. It's gonna be a busy one.