Tuesday, December 27, 2011


Maybe I should take a hint, but I was banned from Facebook today. Had Facebook banned me for spending way too much time on there, then fine. They have a pretty decent case against me. I mean, what else is a girl to do while she's nursing her baby? But no, that was not their reasoning. I was banned for "suspicious behavior." Meaning, they thought I was trying to hack into Facebook or maybe thought I was posting too much of the same thing over and over. [Not unlike the millions of people that post stupid game stuff over and over and over, yet nobody is banning them.]

But the dumb thing is that I never actually posted anything at all. Stupid Facebook wasn't working and wouldn't post the link to the blog I wrote earlier, and I maybe tried hitting the share button one too many times for Facebook's liking. I mean, it wouldn't post so I kept trying to get it to work! What's the harm in that!? & then I got served a 24 hour ban. No posting on anything for a full 24 hours, and there is no way to complain and get the ban lifted. I'm able to see everything, but I'm not allowed to tell you that your baby is cute, or laugh at a witty status you posted. It may not seem like a big deal to you, but darn it, it's a big deal to me. You don't just take the pack of cigarettes from the smoker and make them quit cold turkey, do you??

Anyways, it's time for my weekly photo dump. And this week, there are explanations for some of the pictures. Please, try to control your excitement.

This was my week:

All pictures taken with Instagram. Feel free to follow me: laceyloo22.

A. Charley has a new best friend: Mr. Bear. He's a little blanket with a bear head, and she was hanging out with him at all times until she tried to smother herself with him a few times. They are now taking a break.

C. A pretty church I walk by every day.

D. I went and assisted Mr. Claus in the wrapping of my niece's Christmas presents this year.

G. This is the "mother's room", or the pumping room at work. I spend a lot of time in this super accommodating room. It includes: a table, a window, a cushioned bench, and a tub of Lysol wipes.

H. I was working in the clouds on Thursday.

I. I went shopping with my sister and nieces so my nieces could buy everyone a gift for Christmas from the dollar store. This was Lori during our trip.

J. Who's that cute baby with a bow in her hair on her bald head?

M. Santa brought Charley a hobby horse!

N. Piggies on the little piggies.

Fabulous Holiday Blog Challenge: Day 9

Fabulous Holiday Blog Challenge

Still playing catch up, and I'm way late now. But the topic for Thursday December 8th was this: 2012 goals/resolutions.

I'm not much of a goal setter (says the girl that has a 101 list). Setting a goal puts too much pressure on me and I feel like I give up on it before I even give myself a chance to start it. I'd rather just start and finish things as I can instead of pushing through it because I've officially called it a 'goal'. But regardless, there are a few things I'd like to do in 2012.

1. Start (and finish this time) a 365 day challenge. I tried to do it last year and only made it through mid February. Pa. The. Tic. The premise is this: take and share a picture every day. Last year I claimed that the reason I couldn't continue on is because I didn't have a baby and therefore I didn't have a helpless victim, er, subject for my daily photo taking. This year I have solved that issue:


2. Get ourselves in to an even better financial situation. We did really good in 2011, and I hope to continue that and add to it in 2012.

3. Spend as much time as possible with my sweet Charley. This one should be easy!

4. Travel. Take a big trip. Take a girl's trip. Take a family trip.

And that's really about it. I know I should add something to this list about losing weight (can't seem to shake off that last 5 pounds of baby weight), but I don't wanna put too much pressure on myself or else I'll never do it.

Anyone else doing a 365 day challenge in 2012? Let me know so we can motivate each other! And good job to Kelly who stuck with hers throughout all of 2011! I'm impressed!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Is It Just Me? [Slumpy Slanty Shoulders]

I find great relief in asking "Is it just me, or..." to you. I've asked twice before, and both times people have reassured me that I am not in fact crazy, but that they also felt like a giraffe neck or a caped crusader. I'm looking for some more reassurance this time.

Anyone else feel like they have super slumpy, slanty shoulders? Kinda like this, maybe?


And, it's not even the way I think I look in the mirror. It's the way the slumpy shoulders perform every morning.

You see, I carry three bags in with me to work every day. I have my purse, my pump, and my little cooler bag that carries my lunch and Charley's milk for the next day. I try to balance them out and hang the pump bag on one shoulder, the purse on the other, and the lunch bag in the hand of the arm that has the purse, since it is lighter than the pump. We wouldn't want me falling over from an imbalance, after all.

But, every single day, I feel like my shoulders must be super slanty as I spend my entire 4 block walk each morning and afternoon yanking my bags back up on my shoulders. They won't stay! What am I doing wrong?! I never see anyone else during my walk with this issue.


So how do I fix it? Is it hopeless and just a design flaw in my body? In that case, should I ask Rihanna if I can borrow her shirt?


If I had that, I bet I could carry tons of bags on my shoulders! I could just slip each handle around it's own spike!

Seriously though, is it just me??


There is a major case of anxiety going on here at Life of Lacey. I currently have 28 (TWENTY EIGHT!) posts in draft mode that are just waiting to be finished. They either just need pictures, or I ran out of steam, or are just old and never got finished. But having 28 posts in draft mode makes me very anxious, and much to John's displeasure, finishing these blog posts takes precedence in my life right now. They come before cleaning the house, making bird mobiles, cleaning up my coupon mess (they are cut - just need to be filed), or even feeding my child. Okay, that last one was a lie. But seriously, this gives me major anxiety and I need to finish these ASAP!

Fullscreen capture 12192011 85145 AM

And of course, instead of finishing one of the 28, here I am typing a new blog post. And I have two more ideas in my head that I will likely blog about before I get to these 28 too. What is wrong with me?

You are probably going to tell me it's not that serious and I should just take a few steps back because it's just a silly blog, after all. And I'm going to tell you that I KNOW IT'S JUST A BLOG BUT I HAVE A MILLION THOUGHTS SWIRLING AROUND IN MY HEAD RIGHT NOW AND UNTIL THEY ARE BLOGGED MY MIND IS ALL A'CLUTTER! Thankyouverymuch.

So, depending on how my week goes, like, whether I'm super busy or not (I mean, who is actually busy the week before Christmas anyways?), there may be a surplus of Life of Laceying this week. Any complaints about that? I'm not guaranteeing their quality, but as long as the quantity of drafts goes down I'll feel much better myself.

Anybody else get bloggy anxiety, or am I the only crazy?

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Fabulous Holiday Blog Challenge: Day 7

Fabulous Holiday Blog Challenge

This topic for this Fabulous Holiday Blog Challenge is this: How do you celebrate the holidays? Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Christmas, etc.

In one word: Christmas.

In more than one word + some pictures:

Christmas Eve we typically go to a candlelight service/children's play at my sister's church. Afterwards we eat and play a gift game at my (other) sister's. We used to always play Christmas Bingo, but the last couple of years we've tried different games to change it up a bit.


On Christmas day, we eat and exchange gifts as one big, happy family. There are 16 of us now, but our family has always felt big, even when it was just the 6 of us. I love our Christmases, and feel a pang of sadness when it's all over.



I'm so looking forward to Sunday! More memories, another new family member this year, and lots of volume and laughs. It's not Christmas if it isn't loud, crowded and full of love!

Phone Dump

I used to periodically share pictures with you from my iPhone. They were funny, random things that I really had no business taking a picture of in the first place. I believe the last time I posted one of those blogs, I had 496 pictures on my phone. Since Charley has been here, the phone picture taking has gotten out of control. I currently have 1,170 pictures on my phone, and it's showing no signs of slowing down any time soon.


Since the phone is so quick and easy to use, I find myself grabbing it first before grabbing my big camera when Charley is doing something cute. All of her first smiles were caught on my iPhone camera, and just yesterday I caught the tail end of Miss Charley holding her head up during tummy time for the first time.

And now, I've downloaded the Instagram app. It's basically the same thing as the regular camera, but it takes square pictures which I love, and then has tons of different filters you can put on your pictures. I'm slightly obsessed. Which is why I'm going to have to start sharing these with you weekly or every other week or something.

Anyways, here are the instagram photos for this week. Everything from Christmas cards, to waffle fries, to Charley Jane. It's a quick summary of my week from the lens of my iPhone camera:
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(P.S. I'm Laceyloo22 on Instagram if you'd like to follow me! Share your instagram name with me too!)

Friday, December 16, 2011

The Christmas Card 2011

***I thought I had scheduled this to post on Saturday, which would be long enough to ensure that everyone I sent a card to had already received them and I wouldn't spoil the picture on the card. But apparently I don't know how to read a calendar and it posted today instead. If you have a feeling that you will get a Christmas card from me, come back and read this later after you get it if you don't want to see it here first!***

I am 90% happy with our Christmas card for this year, which is better than I thought I would be. I assumed getting a picture of all 3 of us, when one of us is just 3 months old, would have been a nightmare. Especially considering I had my heart set on one certain pose, and I was going to set up the shoot myself instead of have someone take it for me. I tend to make things hard on myself.

This stems back to my complex about having to be original. I didn't want to do a picture of us in front of the Christmas tree. Too easy. Too common. I also didn't want to make a collage of sorts with separate pictures of each of us. Again, far too easy. & also, I'm a fan of a one-pictured Christmas photo card instead of the multi-pictured ones. Just my preference, and again, I like to make things hard on myself. So I set out to take the perfect Christmas card picture.

This is what I had in mind: The three of us, laying down in sort of a triangle shape, Santa hats on our heads with the points of the hats meeting in the center. Sorta like this:

xmas card

But here are the problems this posed: 1) In order to set up a shot like this by ourselves, the camera needs to be directly above us and that would be hard to do logistically, 2) John and I don't own Santa hats ourselves, and 3) I would need to get all 3 of us smiling in one shot. Considering #1, I thought this may have been impossible to do on our own unless I was able to do one of these things:


A: Dangle the camera from the ceiling fan with a string. Use remote to take picture and hope for the best.
B. Develop go-go-gadget arms and take a beautiful self portrait, while making sure not to drop the camera on the subject in the middle of the picture, Charley.

Since those two options were totally doable but far too easy, I started to think that maybe this idea in my head wouldn't come to fruition after all. I started to give up on it until,



I got an idea.

You see, we are proud owners of a glass topped kitchen table. And you know what is awesome about glass? It's clear, that's what. And you know what is awesome about my DSLR camera? The fact that it 1) Can be placed lens down, with the lens hood supporting it, 2) That I have a remote to use so I don't have to use the timer button, and 3) That my camera has a screen that can flip around for you to be able to see the picture. Like this:

So, combine my glass top table, with the cool features of my camera, and my Christmas card picture all of a sudden becomes doable. A little crazy, but doable. And who says I'm not a little crazy anyways?

So one evening, I was particularly liking my hair that day and decided it was time to set up for the Christmas picture. We didn't have Santa hats yet for me and John, but I was fine with giving up on that aspect of my idea. I was having a good hair day, after all.

John wasn't home yet, and Charley was napping so I decided to get it ready for when John got home and Charley woke up. I ran off to get my white comforter to use as our background and got to work.

I laid the blanket underneath the table, set the camera up on top of the table, grabbed the remote, and crawled under the table myself. I flipped the screen around so I could see the pictures immediately after taking them instead of having to crawl out from under the table after each picture.  It only took a couple of practice shots when I realized that my crazy idea was actually going to work. While I was under the table, I went ahead and ate an old french fry I found on the floor.

Soon, the baby had awoken, John was home, and I was somehow able to convince John to participate in my crazy idea. We were ready.

We all crawled underneath the table and I started taking a million pictures. I knew it was going to be hard to get a good picture of Charley so I just took tons of pictures with the hopes that one of them would turn out good. At first Charley was pretty thrilled with the fact that her two favorite people in the world were laying on either side of her and she was happy. Soon though, she realized we were laying under a table and decided this was not cool anymore. Photo shoot was over.

I went to the computer and started to scan through the pictures. The very first picture comes up. My eyes scan from left to right: "Damn, I look good... Wow! Charley is even smiling!... Whoa. What on earth is John doing? Next." So I flipped through all of the rest of the pictures hoping for something even better than the 2/3 I got on the first take. Only, it wasn't there. JOHN had ruined the very best picture of the batch!

There were other good pictures of John though, so, another idea was hatched in an effort to keep my family from having to go underneath the table again. I opened up Photoshop.

I spent two full evenings replacing something-in-my-teeth-John with a good John. And in the end, I was pretty happy with my creation. I give you, our family Christmas card for 2011:

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And if you notice, there are no names or a signature on the card. That's because I'm an overachiever and left them off so I could sign them all by hand, so that there would at least be somewhat of a personal touch. I'm such a thoughtful Christmas card giver!

Are you a Christmas card sender? How do you feel about photo cards? Most importantly, do you think my Christmas card from this year is the cutest thing you've ever seen? Discuss.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Charley Bear - 3 months

[1 month, 2 months]

I realize I am now 9 days late, but "late" is my middle name lately so that's nothing new. Anyways, I have to write this stuff down or I'm going to forget it! My little lady is growing so fast!

I really slacked off with the bear pictures too. I only have weeks 10 and 12. Oops.

Her big accomplishments this month have to do with her hands. She has learned how to hold onto toys (and much prefers her left hand)...


...and has mastered the art of thumb sucking. She still has a little trouble finding her thumb sometimes, but once she's got it, she's a happy little lady. Each morning when I go into her room to wake her up, I can hear her before I get to her because she is going to town sucking on her thumb. I think the open handed thumb sucking is the cutest thing ever, by the way.


She's still working on picking her head up while she's on her tummy, but has pretty great head control while I'm holding her. She's not interested in rolling over yet, but I bet that is coming soon.

Oh! And I almost forgot! While the car seat was on Charley's list of hated things from the two-month-old blog post, it has somehow become more tolerable to her. I wouldn't say she loves it yet, but I can happily say that I've had much more pleasant car rides and even trips to the store with no tears or screams. The thanks for this goes to my sister (who keeps Charley for us every day while we work) because she has broken her into the car seat. It's not that she keeps her in the car seat all day or anything, but she does have carpool duty a few times a week and Charley has had no choice but to get used to her seat. After a few tearful, screaming car pool rides, she has since gotten used to it and dare I say, even smile while in her seat sometimes. Thank you, thank you, thank you sister!


Also, she is now taking a bottle with no complaints, which is good since I've been back at work for two weeks now. Glad she didn't decide to starve all day while I am at work. We did switch bottles to the Avent brand and all is well with that now.

But most importantly, she's still really freaking cute and such a good baby.


I love my Charley girl! Happy 3 months baby!

Fabulous Holiday Blog Challenge: Day 8

Okay, I am determined to finish this even though I'm now a full week behind. Oh well, whatevs. It's not Christmas yet so it's all still relevant. I hope I don't lose too many points for turning in my homework late.

And, I'm not posting these last few in order. I'm such a rebel.

Fabulous Holiday Blog Challenge

The topic for last Wednesday's Fabulous Holiday Blog Challenge is this: Your Christmas wish list.

I tend to be practical even when requesting gifts. You'd think if it was a gift I'd be okay with lavish, unnecessary spending, but sadly I just can't do it. But if I COULD do it, these are some things I'd be okay with getting.

1. A Massage Gift Card

massage chillin
I will also need a flower in my hair during my massage.
 I have never had a professional massage. My ex-boyfriend actually gave me a gift certificate to get one once, and I never used it. I was far too insecure with my tiny, skinny, not-an-ounce-of-fat-on-it body to strip down and let someone give me a massage. But now, in my non-tiny, stretch-marked, have-an-extra-pooch-left-over-from-pregnancy body, I have decided that I'll strip down for someone to rub my achy shoulders with no second thoughts at all. John is anti-massage and will only rub my shoulders if I have begged and pleaded for a week. I'm thinking my change of heart is due to two things: 1) The number of people that have now seen me naked due to childbirth and/or breastfeeding, and 2) Desperation since carrying so much stuff each day hurts my shoulders & back. [Daily, I carry a purse, my lunch bag/milk tote, my breast pump - which is quite heavy, FYI, a diaper bag, and Charley + her car seat. Of course I only have those last two items in the afternoons when I go to pick her up, but still. That's a lot of crap to carry!]

All of that to say, I would like a massage gift certificate.

2. Camera Stuff

I assured John after I bought my latest lens that I was finished buying camera stuff. But, there are just a couple more things I would like to own one day.

Tripod. Extra dorky flash. Couple more classes.

3. Boots & more boots.

I'm not a boot fanatic. I don't need a million different pairs to match each outfit. But, I feel like I don't even have the basics covered. I have a flat, brown, suede pair and a black suede heeled pair, and some cowboy boots and rain boots, but neither of those get much use. I used to pretty much wear ballet flats all winter long, when not at work, of course. But now, the tops of my feet have developed some sensitivities to the cold weather due to them getting used to boots. And who could deny the tops of my feet warmth?

The day after Thanksgiving Kohl's had a lot of boots priced at just $29.99, and I still couldn't find what I wanted. This is all I'm after: A black or grey pair of leather (real or fake) FLAT boots. No heel. No suede. And possibly with some sort of cute element, such as a buckle, or some slouchiness, or something. Doesn't seem like it'd be that hard to find! But maybe it's not that it's hard to find, it's just that it's hard to find when you are as cheap as I am!

These are decent.

So yes. A pair of boots or two. Not too much to ask I think!

4. Toms

Staying on the shoe theme, I also wouldn't mind a pair of Toms. Apparently they are very comfy, would solve my issue of top-of-the-feet-warmth, and there is no heel on them so I won't be taller than John. (I only wear heels when I'm at work, for the most part.)


5. Custom Wedding Photo Album

Found here!

I've had this marked as a favorite for 2 years now, and have yet to justify the price to myself. I absolutely love this photo album, but can't ever seem to fork over the cash for it. But if it was someone else's cash and/or decision I'd have no problem with it!

6. Undies

I feel slightly awkward putting this on my wish list because it's a necessity of life and I shouldn't be WISHing for undies as I'm pretty sure they are in the budget, but, Charley is 3 months old and I've yet to get myself some new drawers.

I also feel awkward knowing that I always share each blog post on my Facebook (so that my Mama sees them), and I am Facebook friends with several coworkers of the male variety, and here I am talking about my unmentionables. But, if they weren't scarred by all of the boob talk in recent months and I still have a job, then I guess I'm okay.

So anyways, I'm sick of wearing pack underwear and would like to go back to pretty undies. Pack underwear is a godsend while pregnant, but it's time to part ways pack underwear.


Take notice of the one word for women's unmentionables that I did NOT use. I loathe the word. If you don't know what I'm talking about, it starts with a "p" and ends with an "anties". Blech. What an awful, icky word!

7. Sapphire Jewelry

I would love to own a piece of jewelry with a sapphire on it. It is Charley's birthstone and I think it would be nice to own something sapphire in honor of my baby! But, what I don't like, are those recently popular necklaces or bracelets that spell out the kid's names and have their birthstones, etc. (Like this one.)  It's too much. I think it's the word thing I don't like. Ick. I would just prefer a ring or a necklace that I know represents my baby and doesn't spell it out for everyone else to read. Make sense?


Any other cool things I should be wishing for this Christmas?

And, several times as I was making this list I realized I was about to wish for something for Charley and not for myself. It's started already - no longer wanting anything for me anymore and wanting to give everything to Charley. Perhaps that is why I've yet to buy myself some new underwear and I'm buying her new underwear (err, diapers) every other week.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Fabulous Holiday Blog Challenge: Day 6

Once again, I'm late and playing catch up. I just can't seem to do things on time these days...

Fabulous Holiday Blog Challenge

The topic for Monday's holiday blog challenge was this: Share a Christmas dessert/treat recipe! This should be easy enough!

Each year I have high hopes for my Christmas treats. I come up with these grand ideas in my head, and somehow, they never come out quite as I had hoped, as demonstrated by the Whoopie Pies of 2009.

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So, instead of sharing that failed recipe, I'll share a favorite. It's not Christmas specific at all, but it's all I've got.

Cajun Brownies/Goodie Bars/A-Million-Other-Names/Everybody-Calls-Them-Something-Different


(I stole these pictures from Allrecipes.com because I haven't ever taken a picture of mine. It looks just like this, but this version doesn't look like it has pecans in it....which is totally unacceptable!


1 (18.25 ounce) package yellow cake mix
1 cup melted butter
1 egg (beaten)
1 cup chopped pecans

2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese
4 cups confectioners' sugar
2 eggs


1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a 9x13 inch pan. Mix together the cake mix, melted butter and the egg. Stir in the chopped pecans. Press mixture into the bottom of the prepared pan. Set aside.

2.In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese with the confectioners' sugar. Beat in the eggs one at a time until blended.

3.Pour cream cheese mixture over crust. Bake in the preheated oven for 45 minutes. Cool in the pan, then cut into squares before serving.

That's it. And, it's delicious. John actually requested one last night, so since today IS his birthday I suppose I'll make one for him tonight.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

The Things I Do For You II

I'm continuing to do things outside of my comfort zone for Charley. We all remember Nip Dip 2011, and now, we have The Poop. No need to fancy up the title, because, this poop was the master of all poops. At least until she starts eating solids anyways.

So, lets start from the beginning. A few weeks ago, Charley decided pooping daily was no longer for her. She decided to lessen her poop quantity by 75% and go just once every few days. We started out with a 3 day stretch, and then a 5 day stretch, and then she went 6 days which was last Saturday evening while I was out (by myself) shopping and John was home with her. Excellent timing, if I do say so myself. John disagrees, obviously.

"Daddy, I said I'm sorry! Next time I'll let Mama have it!"

So, with these less frequent poops comes more quantity poopage. And each time I have been amazed at just how much a diaper will hold. Luckily, it has always been contained since we've gotten to it fast enough and we have been at home. So yes, lots of poop to wipe, but, it's dooable. [That additional "o" was no accident.]

Which brings us to Sunday. Charley was now on day 8 of no poop and by the smell of things around here, I could tell it was coming soon. It was 10:00 in the morning, and my sister Joy was coming to pick Charley up at 10:30 for a few hours of babysitting while I went to get my hair did. [More on that later.] I had a pep talk with Charley as I was changing her (pee) diaper and asked her very nicely not to poop while with her Aunt Joy, as this was her first time babysitting her and I certainly hoped it wouldn't be the last.

Not 5 minutes later, I hear the tell-tale sound. Luckily, she's laying on the changing pad clothed in only a [fresh] diaper, as I was still searching through her drawers for something for her to wear. But that fresh diaper didn't last very long. Soon, it was full of a week's worth of poop, so I put my gloves on and got to work. [Figuratively I put my gloves on, I don't actually glove myself while changing diapers, but maybe in the future that wouldn't be such a bad idea.]

I think this job was about a 10-15 wipe job. Lots of wiping. Especially because half way through she decided to go again. More wiping. I hated having to use that many wipes, but I figure she's only pooping once a week so my wipe usage is way down as it is!  Anyways, as I use the wipes, I lay them inside the dirty diaper. Once everything is said (usually I'm singing made-up songs about poop to her) and done (dear God please let her be done!), I like to wrap up the dirty wipes inside the dirty diaper, making a ball of dirtiness, if you will, using the diaper tabs to tape it closed. However, this ball of dirtiness was too big to close. I was going to have to carry the OPEN ball of dirtiness the one and a half steps over to the diaper pail next to the dresser.


One and a half steps, you say? No problemo. I mean, I walk one and a half steps all the time. I could walk one and a half steps with my eyes closed! When it comes to walking one and a half steps, I am the master. If walking one and a half steps was an Olympic sport, I'd be the gold medalist. Get the picture?

But this day, I stumbled during my one and a half stepping. Stumbled ever so slightly, that the top 3 wipes fell off of the open ball of dirtiness and landed poo side down on the floor. And one of those wipes, decided to gracefully graze the side of Charley's wicker toy basket on the way down. Are you aware of what wicker looks like?

So yes, as it so gracefully grazed the basket, it deposited fresh poo amongst all of the crevices. All I could picture was a scene from my future:

Charley is one year old and she and I are playing in her room. She is running over to her toy basket to get another toy. Mid-reach into the toy basket, she decides to gnaw on the side of the basket for a minute. Cue: Me, remembering The Poop of 2011, and running to get her screaming NOOO! for fear that I never got all of the poo out of the crevices.

So just to be safe, I will be scrubbing the basket once more with an old toothbrush.

But, the good news is that my sister did not have to deal with The Poop and had a really good time babysitting sweet Charley. I know she would have fared just fine if The Poop occurred while she was in her care, but I would have felt really guilty for her crappy luck.

Crappy luck, indeed.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Fabulous Holiday Blog Challenge: Day 5

Fabulous Holiday Blog Challenge

Day 5 is this: Ideal outfit for Christmas/NYE festivities. Since I'm SUCH a fashionista, this was right up my alley.

Let's start with the ideal outfit for Christmas. This is such a no brainer:


Isn't that what everyone wears on Christmas morning while sitting around opening gifts? No? Well, this is what we wear at my families' Christmas celebrations. I would consider you a scrooge if I saw you wearing anything else.

For New Year's Eve, I tend to dress more for function rather than fashion. Everyone knows that on New Year's Eve you are supposed to go to a NYE party and get so drunk that you don't even remember the new year starting at midnight. In an effort to make sure I reach this goal each year, I go for function with my outfit.

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It's definitely not about the outfit for NYE, but about the accessories.

[No offense to the hosts of this blog challenge! This particular subject was just not my cup of tea...the day I make a "fashion inspiration board" will be the day that I start tracking my outfits using a spreadsheet. Oh wait, I already do that.]

Fabulous Holiday Blog Challenge: Day 4

Fabulous Holiday Blog Challenge

Day 4 of the blog challenge is this: Favorite Holiday Movies & TV Specials. This one is tough for me. Because, well, 10 minutes after I watch a movie or TV show I have already forgotten it. Which makes it hard to pick a favorite because they've all been forgotten. Usually my favorite movie or TV show at the time will be the one I've most recently watched. That's pathetic, I know.

So the Christmas TV special that I've most recently watched was this:

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer

So I guess that's my favorite? And, as many times as I'd seen this in my lifetime, it was all new to me! There was an Abominable Snowman character that I didn't remember, and some toys on some rejected toy island. Yeah, see, I'm already forgetting it again and it's been 3 days since I watched it.

And as for movies, I know I enjoyed Elf before, and there was a movie where Tim Allen was Santa that I liked. I'm sure they were great! It's so exciting to have this media-related dementia, because everything is as exciting as it was the first time I watched it!

Anyone else suffer from this ailment? I've always wanted to be a cool person that could throw out funny lines from a movie and people would laugh and think I was so awesome. I remember in high school or middle school where everyone was trying to outdo each other in inside jokes - like, if you had the most friends with the most inside jokes between you two then obviously you were the bestest friend! And, a friend and I would go to a movie after school one day, and the next day in an effort to prove my best friend status to the other friends I'd try and throw out a funny line from the movie the night before as an inside joke between us, and I wouldn't be able to remember a thing. Like, "Hey BFF, remember last night in that movie, that guy in the movie, errrr ummm, remember how he umm, drove that car? Oh man that was funny, right?" and they'd have no idea what I was talking about and I'd lose points in BFF status instead of gaining them. I'm so smooth. Man, who doesn't miss those days?

Anyways, any classic Christmas movies or TV shows that I need to watch again? What are your favorites?

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Fabulous Holiday Blog Challenge: Day 3

Fabulous Holiday Blog Challenge

Today's Yesterday's holiday blog challenge is was this: Day 3 - Holiday Decorations. I'm all over this one. [Although clearly I wasn't all over being timely with this one as I'm just finishing it up today.]

I've shared my Christmasfied home with you before. But each year is a little bit different so I'm sharing again. Plus, it's part of the holiday blog challenge so I hafta share it this year! It's the rules! Also, I have a sinking suspicion that some of you haven't gone back and read all of my old posts so this could be new to you!

My goal is to one day have enough stuff to decorate not only the living/dining rooms and kitchen, but to also decorate the bedrooms and bathrooms too. But for now, limited closet space for storage is going to limit how much stuff I can have and so only downstairs decorating is going to have to be enough. [This is my Mama's fault...she is the only person I know that decorates her bathroom for Christmas too. And since I wanna be just like her, I aspire to also decorate bathrooms one day. Man, I set really lofty goals for myself, huh?]

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But I need a couple more things to finish this year's decorating. I need a mini artificial tree to stick on top of the fireplace in that back corner. I need something there with height, and that's the only Christmasy item I can think of that's heightful. Yes, heightful.

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Also, in front of the fireplace on the floor I have a 3 candle holder thingy that needs three Christmasy candles. I was thinking candy cane striped ones. And wouldn't you know I see them all over the place until I'm actually out trying to find them and now they seem to be extinct.

Anyways, it's pretty and I like it and that's all that matters. And next year I'm going to have to take a whole new approach to my decorating by placing things out of reach from a little 15 month old's hands and breakable stuff may be no more. So I'm trying to enjoy my last year of doing whatever I please with my decorating.

But the tree won't have to change too much. I already have to put non-breakable ornaments at the bottom, and have had to do that for 7 years now. I'll give you two guesses on why I need non-breakables at the bottom, and I'll even give you a hint. One of the culprits is white, fluffy, and is hanging out under the tree in one of these pictures. Darn cats.

So far this year they have managed to take an ornament off of the tree, take it upstairs and deposit it in the bathroom floor. See! Even they want me to begin decorating the bathroom for Christmas!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Fabulous Holiday Blog Challenge: Day 2

Fabulous Holiday Blog Challenge

Continuing on with the holiday blog challenge, I am now on to Day 2: Favorite holiday tradition, new or old.

As most families do, my family has lots of holiday traditions. We have more traditions during the Christmas season each year than we do for the entire rest of the year. We have craft night, we go to the Southern Christmas show each year, we play the "game"/white elephant/dirty Santa/whatever-you-wanna-call-it each year on Christmas Eve with my immediate family, and also with my Dad's side of the family the weekend before Christmas, we go to the mountains to cut down our own Christmas trees every couple of years, and we used to go see the Christmas lights in McAdenville, NC each year also. But, not surprisingly, my favorite Christmas tradition is fairly new and has to do with food.

Picking out our Christmas tree - 1995

Each Christmas morning, my immediate family and I gather at my parent's house to exchange gifts and eat. We used to pretty much have the same meal on Christmas as we did on Thanksgiving, but at some point during the last 10 years, we changed the Christmas meal to be a brunch-type meal. On top of the favorites - ham and mac & cheese - we now also have breakfast items. We have breakfast pies, and hash brown casserole, biscuits, cinnamon rolls and orange danish. I'm going to attempt a french toast casserole this year too, and I absolutely cannot wait. It is by far my favorite meal of the year, and on top of that, my favorite tradition of the holiday season. Because on top of having my favorite meal consisting of my favorite types of foods (breakfast foods!), we all gather at the longest table ever and eat together. And you can't beat having a long table FULL of people and food you love.

Okay so this is old, from Easter instead of Christmas, and is missing quite a few people. But, you get the idea. All big family meals are had at this long table!

Any good breakfast recipes to share with me should my french toast casserole be a bust? Remember, I'm not the best cook!

Fabulous Holiday Blog Challenge: Day 1

Okay. I'm a couple of days late, but I wanna play too! And so I'm just gonna invite myself over and jump right in. Even though my Mama always taught me not to invite myself over because it's rude. Sorry Mama!

[Quick side story: When I was little/teenagerish, my very best friends lived up the street from me and their house was the friend's hangout house. Their parents allowed a revolving door of friends to come in and out all the time and we were always welcome there. But, as I mentioned, my Mama taught me to never invite myself over somewhere. So if I were to go ask her if I was allowed to go to Angela and Amy's house to play, she would sometimes question if I invited myself over because she never heard the phone ring, and I'd be busted. Even though going to their house never really warranted an invitation. So, the creative, devious little thing I was figured out how to trick her. [I'm really sorry Mama!!]

They are going to kill me for sharing this picture. But I had to! We were so cute trying to look all bad ass (except for sweet lil Amy that has a hint of a smile!)

There used to be a phone number you could call which would allow you to hear a dial tone, hang up the phone, and within seconds your phone would ring right back, and when someone picked it up it would just be a dial tone. Ha! Tricked you! It was great for pranks on your older sisters when they were waiting for a phone call from their boyfriends. But, in this case, I started using this number to make the house phone ring, which I'd quickly pick up and then hang up, then call Amy and Angela to make sure they were home and up for some playing. Then I'd go ask my Mama if I was allowed to go, and since she heard the phone ring she'd assume I'd gotten a proper invite. And I was off! I love you Mama, and I'm sorry I was such a little trickster! She was just trying to instill some good southern manners in me!]

Anyways, on with the show:

Fabulous Holiday Blog Challenge

This is a 2 week blog challenge that is holiday related, and is being hosted by her and her. Here is the complete list of topics, and it's not too late! You can play catch up with me too!

Day 1 is this: Your Favorite Gift You've Ever Received

Well, we all know Big Bear was a big hit from Christmas 1989. But, I probably wouldn't consider that my favorite gift ever. My favorite gift ever may actually surprise some people.

I feel like most people would say that their favorite gift was something big. Like, if they got a car for Christmas, or an engagement ring or even a house. (House?! Do people really get houses for Christmas? If so I need to temporarily join that family!) But mine isn't big or expensive at all. Sure, I've gotten jewelry from John for Christmas, or the KitchenAid mixer that I wanted from my parents, and although I absolutely love any and all gifts, they aren't the ones that stand out in my mind.

For Christmas 1995 (I was 13), my sister Christy gave me a big box of stuff for Christmas. The box was wrapped, and then once I opened it, it was full of many other gifts that had all been wrapped individually. As I started opening them, I realized that this gift was full of a ton of crafty things. Felt and buttons, pom poms, wiggly eyes and pipe cleaners. It was an entire box full of craft supplies and I absolutely loved it.


My sister Christy has always been the craftiest of us all. She is a bit older than me, so as I was growing up I remember how she always was making crafts with all of her cool supplies and she'd often let me help her. So this Christmas she decided to get me tons of supplies of my very own because she knew how much I'd like them. It didn't cost much or seem like much, but here it is 16 years later and I still remember this gift.

Buttons! Yay buttons!
Here is the reason I loved it so much - it wasn't something I asked for, but instead was something she thought of herself that she just knew I'd love. That is my favorite thing about giving gifts myself - I really try to think of something that I know that someone will love. I try to stay away from ideas on a wish list, and only get those if I just cannot think of something else myself. [For example, anytime I'm buying for any of the men in my family! Sheesh, they are so hard to shop for!] And so, when someone does the same for me I not only appreciate the actual gift, but I really love the thought that went into it. It makes me feel all warm and fuzzy and loved inside and I really look forward to giving and receiving gifts like this.

But, in my family and friend's defense, APPARENTLY I'm a tough person to buy for. APPARENTLY I make too many blanket statements about things I don't like - such as shirts with words or cartoon characters, decor with words, etc. etc. And then APPARENTLY that makes people nervous to stray from my wish list because who knows what other things I despise. But, that's okay. I love them anyways and I will still enjoy buying for them each year, much to my grinch of a husband's protests.

What has been your favorite gift ever?