Monday, January 31, 2011

Lauren Alaina

It is very rare that I watch TV shows during its original airing. In some ways, DVR has ruined my social life, but whatever.

So, recently we caught up with American Idol and on one of last week's episodes there was this young lady and she blew me away. Enough that I just had to blog about her. Watch the entire video, she sings twice!

Sorry, Faith, but young Lauren Alaina sang your song better than you did! The tone of this girl's voice is so pleasing and the control she has over it is amazing. There are so many talents out there that I would love to own, and singing is one of them. What would it be like to just be able to blow people away with some amazing pipes like this? I would throw concerts out of my garage every weekend if I could sing like this. She has my vote!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

There are so many things in life that I would love to splurge on: clothes, shoes, purses, jewelry, makeup - gosh, I could really go on and on. Sadly, I usually don’t have the funds to backup my outrageous shopping cravings and have to settle on less luxurious stuff. However, the one thing that I believe takes precedence over all other material things is my home. We moved into our house in June of 2009 and slowly but surely we are furnishing the house, however, a lot of work and big purchases are still needed:

- Formal dining room set.
Although this isn’t a priority since we have a big table in our informal dining area and I have thrown out the idea of putting up bookshelves and placing some chairs in there as a reading “nook”. At the moment this space is housing Bella’s trampoline and other toys.

- Blinds in the master bedroom and spare room.
Yes, the previous owners took the blinds with them. I didn’t really see a point in taking them. I mean, their new place probably doesn’t even have the same sized windows!

- Handles for the kitchen cabinets.
That’s right, the previous owners took all of the cabinet handles in the kitchen as well. Ok, I get that they aren’t the cheapest things in the world, but what if the place they move into already has handles? And what if they are now renting and can’t really put those handles on anyway.

- Coffee table and extra seating for the family room.
We splurged on a nice recliner for two, which I love, but I have found myself sitting on the floor on more than one occasion when we didn’t have enough seating.

- Other frivolous décor.
Our walls are pretty bare, so some artwork or shelving; something to really make a house a home.

As you can see, there is a lot of work to do in my home, so it is a good thing that John recently got his bonus from work (which is about the same amount I make in eight months as a receptionist!) and has allotted me a little bit of money for “house stuff”. I never have extra money for this kind of thing, so I was super excited to have a chance to get creative and, again, start turning my house into a home. For this post, I wanted to share some of the home décor that I found. The bigger ticket items will be for another time.

Let me preface the below décor ideas with telling you that all of the furniture in our house has pretty much been chosen by me. Of course I only picked things that were gender neutral so that John wouldn't feel like he was living in a cupcake; I am super girly and my ideal home would have pink and white everywhere, flowers, lace, ruffles, hearts, canopy beds, flowing curtains, overstuffed sofas and chairs, and – ok, you get the picture. Since the rest of the house is so contemporary and something I basically compromised my personal style on so that John would also be comfortable, I have been granted free reign on our as of yet empty spare room.

I am pretty set on a romantic, modern version of a Victorian era room and have found some wonderful knickknacks at, which I first heard of through Mimi at Irresistible Icing.

Black Baroque Oval Picture Frame $24.00

Cast Iron Key in Lock Hook Wall Hooks - Set of 3 $22.00

Set of 3 Antiqued Vintage Style Mirrors $52.00

Black Baroque Noir Candlestick Lighter $14.00

And how cute are these teacups?! I thought they would look really pretty on a decorative shelf.

Do you love?!

I have such visions for this room and hope it comes out just right! John's family is probably coming to stay with us for a visit (they live in DC) in June and I would love to not only have our spare room furnished, but completely decorated as well!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Weekend Roundup

Having children is expensive. It is the most expensive venture a person will take on. Adding to the cost of your own children is other people's children.

This time of year seems to be the birthday season. Everytime I check my daughter's folder at her daycare, there seems to always be an invitation in there. Bella and I have different reactions to seeing an envelope in her folder: as Bella screams for joy, "Yay! Are we going to the party after naptime?!", Mommy is grunting in her head (whatever, I know other parents must think the same thing when they get an invitation for Bella's party!).

We had two birthday parties this weekend and a memorial service. Hmm, sounds like the making of a good movie á la Four Weddings and a Funeral. Anyway, Saturday was no big deal, went to the jump house (Bella jumped so much that she was super sweaty and I saw a boy touch Bella's head to see what was glistening), ate cake and fruit, went home. Perfect, my kind of party.

Sunday was another story. I took Bella to her very first drop-off party, which was a Princess Spa theme. I was nervous about leaving her at someone's house, but she was too excited to care that I was leaving her. I went straight home and started getting ready for the memorial service to follow. I drove back to the party to pick Bella up, which was just under 30 minutes from my house. I then drove back towards home, where my brother lives close by, just to find out that he wasn't going! Great, that was a waste of gas. I had to turn around and drive 40 minutes south to pick up my mom. We then drove another 20 minutes south to the memorial service in Seattle. Had no problems finding the church, but was very discouraged when I found out the church doors were locked. I tried to call all of our relatives and finally reached my cousin who informed me that the memorial service was on Saturday!

Let's recap that:

Dropping Bella off at a party:
Marysville to Everett 30 minutes
Everett to Marysville 30 minutes

Picking Bella up from party and intending to pick up my brother and his wife:
Marysville to Everett 30 min
Everett to Marysville 30 min

Driving South to pick up Grandma after finding out my trip back to Marysville was useless:
Marysville to Lynnwood 35-40 min

Driving to the memorial service:
Lynnwood to Seattle 20 min

Driving back after finding out that the entire trip had been worthless as we were there on the wrong day:
Seattle to Lynnwood 20 min
Lynnwood to Marysville 35-40 min

I spent way too many hours driving yesterday to pointless destinations. I literally used half a tank of gas in two days. To put this into perspective, a full tank will usually last me eight days, sometimes nine or ten.

I have four sorted loads of laundry sitting on my floor, waiting to be washed as I wasted time driving all over the state of Washington this weekend. Hopefully your weekend was better spent!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Kids Are So Innocent

This was a fun little drawing that my five-year-old made for me of our small family. She was very cute and told me that it says, "Mom, Bella and Dad." I had to point out that, "Umm, I think that says 'bab', honey." She looked at it and giggled. In addition to "bab", there are a ton of things about this picture that would make one smile: the flower being bigger than the child, the fact that my hair looks like gigantic ears, that there is no way our bodies could possibly fit in the tiny house, etc. But the funniest part? Dad, on the far right, is looking a little, well, how to put this lightly? Phallic...

Happy Friday!

Monday, January 10, 2011

One Week Down

Saturday marked my one week abstinence from soda, which included a kid's birthday party, thank you very much! I find it hardest to to resist at home since my house is stocked full of soda. I was tempted several times at the birthday party to indulge in one cup of soda, just one! But I know myself, and the moment I start, I won't be able to stop again. One week down, 51 more to go!

On another note, right before winter break, I started writing again. It started out as such a great idea in my head, but it is slowly turning into a very poorly written romance novel. I am determined to finish this book, though, if only just to go with the momentum and prove to myself that I can keep up with this hobby of mine. I am about 30,000 words into it.

As I am writing and reading more, more new voices and plots pop into my head and I am horribly tempted to veer away from my current project and move onto the next, but I want to stay focused!

Sunday, January 2, 2011


Less than half of the American population will stay committed to their New Year's Resolution past the six month mark.

Every year, I make the same resolutions and every year, I break them. Instead of the habitual "I will lose weight this year!" I have decided to modify that goal with another one that is equally as weight-loss involved and possibly more difficult.

I am quitting soda.

Yes, yes. I know that may seem like such a meaningless goal to the rest of you, but if you can imagine giving up your greatest vice (e.g. cigarettes, weed, gambling, SHOES!) then you have an inkling of how much of a feat this goal really is. Yes, I am basically telling you that soda is my crack. There is nothing more potent on a summer day than the crisp sound of an ice cold Coca-Cola Classic can being opened. To understand my addiction, you will need to take a peek at my pantry:

I had lunch at my brother's house yesterday and when I told his wife about my resolution, she gasped! My family is well aware of my addiction to this sugary bubbly and I am sure they don't think I can really give it up. I probably should've started with giving it up for Lent and seen how that went; 40 days is a lot more feasible than 365. Go big or go home!

I am hoping that eliminating this kryptonite from my daily diet will allow me to lose weight naturally and that I don't substitute it with something else. Day One was no problem for me at all and I am doing great on Day Two so far. Only 363 days to go!

Saturday, January 1, 2011


Happy New Year!

Yes, I have been absent from blogging, yet again! With New Year's comes all those wonderful resolutions just waiting to be broken! But more on that when it isn't so late in the day.

My New Year's Eve was rather mellow. John and I played with one of his Christmas presents - an electronic dartboard (with built in trash-talking feature!). At midnight, we allowed Bella to play with silly string, but that wasn't the best idea I have ever had - it was a pain to get out of her hair and out of my floor!

I hope you had a wonderful New Year's Eve too! Bring it on 2011!!!