Friday, September 30, 2011

31 Days Of Change

Tomorrow starts the 31 Days of Change Series over at The Nester.


Basically, you pick and topic and write 31 days about it. It's kind of like a "how to."

My topic is 31 Days to Breaking Your Mold.

I am excited and hope I don't miss any days! I see alot of scheduled posts in my future!

LOVE this wreath

I will definitely be trying this. Courtesy of Thrify Decor Chick. 



Have a great weekend everyone!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

New House

So, Jason went to go visit the possible new rent house this week - it's older, yes, but the backyard is enormous and it's a house.

I haven't lived in a house in almost 10 years. The last house I lived in was my parents, right before I moved out at 22. Do you know how excited I am to not have to walk up stairs to get home? Or to not have to worry about our downstairs neighbors when the kids get rambunctious? Or to be able to send the kids and dogs to the backyard when the inside gets too crowded? 

What I am really excited about it decorating the outside of the house for Christmas. And to be able to buy patio furniture. And Jason is happy he has a lawn to take care of (I am sure that will wear off soon).

I am also excited to be going back to my home town. There is something strangely appealing about knowing people there. I don't know what it is....

So, we have another busy weekend this weekend with the kiddos. I really would love to go to the State Fair, but I don't see that happening this weekend.

I am ready for Friday.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Aggravated

Ugh - I get so aggravated with people sometimes.

I read Yahoo almost every day. I will check to see what is going on, but they have Yahoo contributing writers that are people like you and me. Sometimes the articles they write are helpful, sometimes they are not, sometimes they are just plain ridiculous.

But what aggravates me so much are the people who comment. Especially in this economy. I am just so tired of hearing people complain about money. And unemployment. And how much money they don't have. TO me, if you are on Yahoo, commenting and making fun of the ideas that some of these people used to save money or get debt free, and you are saying you are unemployed and "I'd like to see him to what he said living in my shoes, I've been unemployed for two years..."

Well, my answer to that is that MAYBE you should spend your time NOT on Yahoo, commenting on articles that don't even matter. MAYBE you should be using that time to find a solution to your problem.

I read this article today. This man wrote two books and this article is about how to raise a family of four on $40,000 a year. People just criticized him and I am not sure why. He talked about how he and his wife were both teachers and before they had kids, they knew they wanted her to be home, so they planned for four years, saving her salary and only living off hers. They only planned on her being home for a year, but she has been home for six. It talks about living frugally. (From the sound of this article, they followed Dave Ramsey's advice on Total Money Makeover.)

But this family sacrificed and they had a PLAN. And yet still, people continue to write their opinions about "whoa is me" and "$40,000 is alot of money, compared to what I make" and "I'd like to see him make $15,000 on unemployment with 5 kids and a mother in law to feed." Um, excuse me? I am SO TIRED of people in this country being victims. And that's all I hear constantly. Trust me, I have empathy for people, I do. I can never judge someone until I walk a mile in their shoes. I know what it's like to be broke and poor. I know that sometimes, you just have no choices about your situation. I know. I just know that the people who are like me, the ones who are doing everything they can to get out of their situation, are NOT on Yahoo making fun of someone else who made different CHOICES and is now not suffering the consequences.

Jason and I know that it was not ONLY his job loss and me having a baby that contributed to our money problems. They were choices we've made, for a long time, about how we chose to spend our money. Things wouldn't have been so bad, had we planned better when we did have money. I mean, you could sit there and say, "If only I had more money, I wouldn't have these problems anymore..." but it's simply not the case. Jason and I struggle everyday with how to spend money. It's a huge obstacle we both have, something we fight against. We are not savers at heart, we are spenders. Always have been. And it's worse when you've been broke, because your first inclination when you have a little extra is to spend it. "We NEED this," we say. And yes, sometimes we do. It's very hard for me now to spend money on clothes. But when you've got holes in your shoes and no jeans because they are torn, you need to buy things. What happens when you are broke is that you put off things for so long that you need because you can't afford to buy them, that when you have a little money, it goes fast for things you need. Clothes, getting hair done, oil changes and other car maintenance. It's hard, I am not going to lie. But I would never sit there and judge someone because of my lousy choices (and lousy luck sometimes). It's not fair.

And furthermore, you could have all of the money in the world, but if you do not have a plan on how to spend it and have some limits, you will end up right where you started, which is exactly why lottery winners so often go broke. Before, if they had an extra $20, it was spending it on going out to eat. Now, they have an extra $20,000 and it's spent on a vacation. Or new car.

I guess I am just tired of hearing all of these sob stories. Just today, I am. I know there are genuine people out there with sob stories. But survivors are not going to sit there and complain about it all day. They are going to actually do something about it and sacrifice to get back where they want to be.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Avery is 10 Months Old....

Oh my goodness - my daughter is 10 months old today! I can't believe how fast this year is flying by...


Avery is a happy, happy, happy little girl. She loves to shake her head no, loves to dance, and loves to be thrown around (thanks to her daddy!)

She is starting to learn to say "uh-oh" and can say "momma" and "dada" and usually use it within the right context!


She stands up all the time and can stand by herself for a pretty long period. She loves to slap her belly when she's naked while standing up. And she goes, "Oh,oh,oh." We say, "ho! ho! ho!" cause she looks like Santa with that big old belly!


She eats anything and everything we give her. There is NOTHING she doesn't like to eat (obviously, the little chunkster!)


She loves to give kisses now. She will even give you a kiss without having to ask for it!



She is just the light of our lives and we can't wait to watch her grow!



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Thursday, September 22, 2011

Pretty In Pink

So, I am using the new Blogger interface - we will see how we like it! My phone decided that it wanted to die today. Can't say that I am sad. I tried to use the camera this morning and it didn't want to take any pictures. I thought - I definitely need a new phone. I have been looking for a long time but couldn't make up my mind. Then, this afternoon, I dropped it one too many times and the screen went white and that was it. Ok. Time for a new phone. Off to Walmart I went and ten minutes later, I had a new droid for $1.05. Pretty awesome if I do say so myself!

Avery went to Gigi and Pops this morning, but since my camera phone didn't work, I have no pictures of them together. Boo. But I did take pictures of her today - she really looked like a big girl! I found a pink headband that is so cute and I've never seen it before - it must have been Soph's at one point but it was so cute, I am sad she hasn't been wearing it this whole time! She is wearing her little jeans and Keds. I got a pair as a hand me down from a girl at work and I have been waiting for her to fit in them! She is so cute. I can't believe tomorrow, she will be 10 months old!




These are such terrible pictures - but I am putting them on anyway! (This new phone takes great pictures, by the way!)


Have a great Friday! I am tired and going to B-E-D!



Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Updates About ME!!!

I don't have any great pictures to show today, so I thought I would tell you guys what I've been up to.

Well, I think we found a house! I was having a bit of a panic attack that our lease was up at the end of October and we had no place to move, so I posted something on Facebook about needing a place. Within minutes, a friend of our family said, "we have a house! It's the house I grew up in, but if you are interested, let us know." Here is a picture...


So, yes, it's older and yes, it's a little smaller. But it's $500 less than what we are paying now, in the right area, and with no security deposit. Um, yes please! It's got a huge backyard with big trees, which is exactly what we wanted more than anything. But this will give us a great chance to put some money aside, so next year, we can (hopefully) buy. The papers are not signed, but I am hoping it works out!

Avery's birthday is in two months. Yes, on Friday she will be 10 months old and her birthday will be in 2 months. I can't believe it. I thought about some good themes and found this awesome blog site for birthday parties....

Kara's Party Ideas is a great, great site for birthday parties or showers of all ages (but mostly kids, I think). I am thinking Sesame Street because Avery loves Elmo and loves to watch Sesame Street. Here is a preview from one of the party ideas I found...

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Check out this cake....

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There is some potential here! I never thought I would have a Sesame Street Party, but when you look at blogs and see how people have done it where it doesn't look completely cheesy, it makes you think...hmm???

Now, you all know I love Thrifty Decor Chick. But she has outdone herself this time. This is my idea of the perfect backyard patio...

large deck different levels

Look at this beautiful scene she's created!

outdoor candleabra

Now is the best part....

sears gazebo night

Oh my goodness. Heavenly. Her husband built that entire deck. Um, serious skills, right?

Monday, September 19, 2011

Just Stuff

Hmmm...what to write, what to write.

What to write about tonight?

I was a little bit upset tonight - I am totally down with The Sing Off on NBC but got a little upset when I realized I had missed my boy Ashton on Two and a Half Men. But The Sing Off will be awesome this season!

I thought I would post some randonmess...

Here is a picture of Jason and Avery at Jordan's soccer game. Don't let this fool you - Jason is always standing up on the sidelines. But for right now - he was sitting next to Avery.

Avery just sits and plays.....


 Jordan playing...


A good picture of Avery's little ponytail....


I don't usually post pics of Avery in the bath, but this one was WAY too cute not to...


Avery doing what she does best, letting go and standing by herself!!

Have a great Tuesday!!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Avery's New Trick Video Blog

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Avery and Bella Video Blog

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So, Avery found the windows.  And lots of other things, including her closet, which houses all of the other toys we've been hiding from her this whole time. Namely, her sisters. Here is some video and pictures I shot as she was looking at the window.

Jordan's Sleepover

 

This is Jacob. He goes to Jordan's school and they met last year in their class. They were also on the same soccer team for the last two seasons. Jacob's dad and Jason have grown to be friends during the soccer games, so they will text from time to time and we always stood by him at the games. We actually were starting to be friends with everyone on Jordan's soccer team.
For some reason, Jordan's mom decided to move him to a different team this year. We still don't really understand why, but Jordan was pretty sad about it. The new team he is on has played together for a while and he doesn't have any friends on the team yet. So, it's hard when we go to the fields and Jordan is like, "There are the Strikers!" and he wants to go see friends he used to play with.

But, anyway, Jason tries as hard as he can to stay up on the things that are going on in the kids' lives, so it is not always easy for him when things change and he has no control over it. But even though Jordan and Jacob don't play soccer anymore, Jason still talks to Jacob's dad and we will still watch Jacob play soccer when we can. This week, we had talked to Jake's dad about something called Friday Night Live at their school. They can go and dance at the gym on Fridays. (Are they really old enough for that yet??? NOOO!!!)

**Just a little sidebar - I remember Friday Night Live in Grand Prairie at Lifetime Fitness. 90210 was all the rage my 5th grade year and I remember wearing my long sleeve black blouse with the see through sleeves and jewel button covers. Ah, memories.

Jake and Jordan had talked about going and possibly spending the night with each other, but they weren't having it this weekend, so Jason asked Jake's dad if he could just spend the night with us instead. Of course, they said yes, so Jason picked Jake and Jordan up after soccer practice and we planned on taking them both to their game on Saturday morning.

They came over and let me just tell you - all 9 year old boys are the same. Period. Kind of awkward, old enough to be very independent but not old enough to have much freedom, know it alls. They were both so sweet and so well behaved, but if you have a 9 year old, just know, it's not just yours.

Jake was absolutely wonderful - they played Wii in Jordan's room all night long. The next morning, they planned on playing outside but spend more time dressing up to go play outside than actually playing outside.

I took this picture of them at the fields. Ah, boys,. They did make us laugh on the way over to the game when they were dancing in the backseat of the car!

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Thursday, September 15, 2011

Avery's Friend

I'd like you to meet someone. This is a doll that rides in our car with us. We don't have a name for her just yet. Maybe I will ask you for some suggestions. Right now, I just call her "friend." When Avery gets in her car seat, and she usually doesn't like being put in there, I will say, "look who it is! It's your friend!" 


So, she will look at me as I show her her "friend"....


Then she will grab her friend, bury her face in her friend, then bite her friend (for good measure).....


Then, we have a happy car traveler!!!

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Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Avery Pulling Up Video Blog

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The (sometimes) Forgotten One

So, the other day, I was laying in the middle of my floor, with both dogs laying around me. I was hugging the pups, kissing on them, giving them loads of attention. I stood up, swooped my daughter in my arms, and lavished her with hugs and kisses and attention.

As I was doing this I thought, who am I missing?

Oh yeah - that manly figure sitting on the couch. When was the last time I hugged and kissed him, lavishing him with all kinds of attention?

Hmm...I had to think hard about that one.

Oh my goodness, it's so easy to forget about that in a marriage, isn't it? Why was I so free with my TLC with dogs and kids but not with my husband?

So, we turned on the Cowboys game and I said, "Would you like a shoulder rub?" I gave him one, without asking for one in return, and I laid in his lap while watching the game.

He thanked me the next day for the attention. I had no idea me skipping over that little detail meant so much, but it did.

We all love our kids so much, but don't forget about the ones who gave them to us. Whether they say it or not, they need attention too!

Monday, September 12, 2011

Avery Pics

So, the pacifier has been something that we've used a whole lot lately. Avery has her molars coming in, which makes a grand total of 12 teeth, so she chews on it. I try not to put it in her mouth unless she is fussy and I can tell when it's her teeth when I use it and she just stops crying. If it's not her teeth, and she has her pacifier, she will still be fussy. But, I wanted to take a picture of her new ponytail that has become a daily event now! Cutie patootie!


I really hate this camera phone, it takes such lousy pictures. Maybe if I had my regular camera charged up every once in a while, it would be better.


Avery watching her daddy...


Avery watching the Cowboys game....


Avery laughing at her daddy...


More laughing at her daddy...


I just know at any moment she is going to take off and walk. She can stand for a few seconds by herself now. She can stand on one foot, she can pull up on something without having to hold on (like, a wall or something). My big girl.

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Sunday, September 11, 2011

I will never forget

I will never forget that day as long as I live. I can only assume that there are other days throughout history that are burned into other people's minds, the attack on Pearl Harbor, the assassination of JFK. This was a day I can remember almost minute for minute, which is incredible to me, because the only other days I can remember like this would be my wedding day and the birth of my daughter.

I was living with my parents at the time and working as a server in a restaurant. I was also a student at Mountain View. That morning, for some reason, I woke up a little earlier than usual and went to the living room where the television was already on channel 5. I never watched the news at that time so I was getting ready to change the channel when I noticed the images of the World Trade Center. Smoke was billowing out of the tower. At first, I thought I was simply looking at the building on fire, but listening to the newscasters told me it was something else entirely. No one knew why, but a plane had flown into the side of the building. People were saying that is was possibly a prop plane, or perhaps a plane that was having technical difficulties with the controls that had accidentally flown into the building. It was devastating for sure, but for a moment, people thought it was a freak accident, a one time flight gone awry, until the second plane hit.

 I was watching the TV when I saw the live feed of the second plane. When the plane impacted the building, I gasped. I will never forget it - my stomach jumped and I just covered my mouth with my hand, not knowing at all what to think. I just sat there, watching this screen, thinking what kind of awful joke this was, to publicize this movie trailer as actual news. It couldn't be real, I thought. It just couldn't. The newscasters started talking about how the hits had to be on purpose, that the second plane had even flown in such a way that it was obvious it's goal was to hit the WTC. Then, another report: the Pentagon was hit. And another plane had gone down in a field in Pennsylvania.

The look of people on TV in NYC was just the most terrifying of all. No one knew what this was about, or who did it, or what was to come next. Would there be more bombs? More intents to attack? What about World Trade Centers in other major cities? Was this over or was it just beginning? They grounded all flights that day. I looked up in the sky and saw nothing. Not even a small plane, and it was such an eerie feeling. Not since the days of airlines had there been an entire day where no one was traveling by air. No one cared, no one complained. Everyone was just terrified.

My sisters and I didn't go to school, as classes were cancelled, so we decided to go eat lunch. We sat in the bar of the restaurant, so we could see the televisions. No one in the restaurant was talking. At all. Everyone was just staring at the TVs, waiting to hear something. An explanation as to what this was about, a new target, another impact. Everyone knew this was a terrorist attack but we didn't know which group or why. We just sat there, barely eating, concentrating all of our attention on the television. Just then, a group of Armed Forces walked through the doors and sat down. I remember the thought that crossed my mind: "Their lives are about the change forever."

I went to work that night with a new trainee that was expecting me to have a good attitude, even though I was completely distracted. When I got there, the scene was the same. Quiet. Eyes at the screens. Somber. I remember we waited on a gentleman who asked for extra bacon and when he got his bill, he threw a fit about the extra 15 cents it cost. I went to the back and just yelled, "Thousands of people were just murdered and all this guy can think of is the 15 cents for his stupid bacon? What a jerk - he's got his family sitting here, enjoying dinner with him and so many people just lost their loved ones." I was so angry; I normally took stuff like that in stride, but at that moment, it just offended me to the core that this guy had the nerve to say anything about something so trivial when this world changing event had just taken place.

No one really knew what would happen next, or how the world would change. And change it did within the following ten years. But one thing is for sure, I will never forget that day as long as I live.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Ah, Sesame Street

We really do not ever plop our daughter in the middle of the living room to watch TV. But tonight, nothing we could do was making her happy, so I turned on our Sesame Street DVD. Ah.