Today IS....

National Popcorn Day!

So, instead of tonight being 'game' night, I'm thinkin' MOVIE night =)

There are so many movies we haven't seen but the kids?!  well, that's another story.  They just might have to watch an old one again!

We've officially made it through Monday so - Happy Tuesday!


Still learning....

after ALL these years; Yep!

The past few weeks have been very challenging but I keep going.  One step at a time.  One day at a time.  Praying for the best.

As I sit here today, I realize how much I have learned.
  • trust is earned; not assumed
  • i am not invincible
  • praying from the knees is very emotional
  • that "Joel" often knows exactly what I need to hear =)
  • what it feels like to love someone more than life itself
  • what it feels like to not only hurt those you love but also to be hurt by those that you love
  • how priceless it is to have my daughter by my side at one of my darkest, most grim moments 
  • what 'rock bottom' feels like
  • how comforting the book of Psalms can be
  • what it really means to 'pick up the pieces'
  • saying I'm sorry doesn't necessarily mean I'm wrong
  • sometimes I really can't make sense of a situation and that has to be ok
  • that it's ok to stare at my wrist "believe" and challenge what I see, say and hear
  • it's just as important to forgive as it is to ask for forgiveness
  • that my famous words "everything happens for a reason" are sometimes difficult to swallow
  • how important it is to live each day (and night) as if it's my last
  • what it means to go through the 'thin' of 'thick and thin'. 
And while a lot of things will never be the same, there's a sense of a 'new normal'.  Many of the things that I did before simply don't matter and have been replaced with new routines, new habits and most of all new appreciation, respect and meaning.  

Happy Monday ya'all!


New find -

I haven't been inspired motivated focused lately to blog.  Just a lot going on and have even struggled with 'going through the motions'.  So instead of boring you with my stuff, I thought it might be fun to share some of the blogs that help me focus - here's one that I have already grown to love -  Elise - she's got it together!  If you have time to click and review, you just might find some inspiration, too =)

Scrapbooking remains a top priority and of course I stilll love Pinterest.  Feel free to share what keeps you inspired.....it just might work for me too!



Happy Birthday Kayden!  It's hard to believe you're three already,  yet you are mature beyond your years.

We know you will have a great day and wonderful party!

Gigi and Poppy love you =)


This little light of mine....

I'm gonna let it shine =)

I LOVE lights.  As a matter of fact, I have so many country lights that in most rooms we don't need lamps,  ha!

Last year when we added some 'wine/grape' stuff to our kitchen, we wanted to display some of our favorite wineries' bottles -
And when we visited the Fenwick winery, we saw this sitting on the counter -
which meant we just HAD to share a bottle just so I can have one of my own to light up....and we did just that!
Looks like a perfect project for my DH....right?!  It would look perfect in our Lighthouse bathroom and just think we wouldn't need any lights, ha!  And maybe we can come up with something 'crafty' to do with some of our other wine bottles.  Any suggestions?


Sorting stuff out...

I've been on this kick lately, been feelin' the need to sort stuff; clean out; get rid of what we don't need/use.

Today's project:! The pantry. Ugh was it ever needing a make-over (or clean-up). So shortly after lunch I began. Yep, found more than one of several items that household's really only need one. Got rid of the 'aged' stuff and figured out meals for this week all with what we had right under our nose. Imagine that.
It took me several hours but it's finally done -
Much better, huh?

On a completely different note, am I the only one that has trouble with using Picnik on a Mac? It constantly shuts down.

And what's on my list next? Let's just say one room at a time, 'one day at a time'!


Simplier times.........

Today's been one of those days. A day where you step back and look at life.

A day when you can't help but wonder why and a day when you challenge "everything happens for a reason".

Yesterday as I was 'working out', I thought it would be fun, nice, beneficial to start cleaning out drawers, cabinets and rooms to simplify.

So tonight as I sit in what we consider the 'old' living room, with candles burning and just a little bit of light from a few lamps, I think back to more simple times. Times when this room was all we had....
for years, a pack and play and/or bassinet was a permanent fixture. Toys were in a bin and candles were out of reach. Our TV was big and fat and small. We all had to watch the same show. Our cell phones were not within reach 24/7.

So just for tonight I'm going to sit here. In this old room, watch the old tv (that's not HD) and pray for the sun to come up tomorrow =)


Where to go....

Welp.....as we sit here watching the Golden Globe awards and watch the temp drop to the low 20's I can't help but focus on something warm.

Like here -
will it be Myrtle, Disney, a cruise?!  I'm still trying to figure that all out but I can guarantee we will be someplace warm come April 7th.

I know we have been lucky with no 'major' snow yet but I still want to switch my countdown calendar to Spring Break.  Any suggestions?!


Old World vs. New World

Wine making is very interesting to us. We have learned about the many kinds of grapes and it's incredible that the same kind of wine can taste so different at different wineries.

Last night we learned even more. We participated in the 'blind' tasting of Old World and New World wines and Sunset wines. As Nate explained the difference, we could smell and taste exactly what he was saying. We tasted two flights. One Chardonnay and one Syrah. It wasn't any surprise that we were able to quickly identify the Sunset wines over the other countries. As usual, it was a fun time with good wine and new friends.

She did IT!!!!

Yep, Cierra passed her written test so is officially able to drive us around. Hmmm sure glad Ronnie loves this part of parenting cuz I get pretty nervous. She ended up not going to school (make up day for exams) so they had brunch at Panera then some practice driving in the Kohl's parking lot. Fun day for both!
So look out Jefferson County......this chickadee is behind the wheel =)


If you want to scrap once a month, check this out...


Happy Birthday Dad!

I hope you have a wonderful birthday! Remember, you're never too old to set a new goal or dream a new dream. ENJOY your day, we love you very much!


What I'm LOVIN' Wednesday

Journaling my life is something I do have tried to do for many years.  I have at least 5 journals, I scrapbook (when I have time) and I blog 3-4 times a week.  Unfortunately though, the pages in my journals are blank, my scrapbooking is behind and my blog?!  Well, sometimes you just can't say what you really want to there.  (Although I do have tons of 'drafts', ha!)

Several years ago my bff and I had the privilege of skimming through "Ma's" diaries.  I could have spent days going through them as her life unfolded.  Her most personal, heartfelt thoughts were right there in front of my eyes.  Her handwriting is something that could never be mistaken and as the years passed, we could begin to see a change......probably just age.

But, I think it is so important to leave your mark.  Let your family and close friends know what was really in your head.  And even express written feelings to those that may not really know how much you love them.  So with that in mind, I was so excited to find this handy, dandy Mac app!

It has a reminder that you can set so I get pokes throughout the day that keep me on my toes and so far, so good!  I'm proud of myself for keeping up and thankful for Scrapaholics for sharing.  Every now and then something good does come from Facebook, lol!


All things PINK....

This girl is all about her pink. It can be Hello Kitty, the Disney princesses or even Dora (she has some pink going on). Without a doubt, she loves pink!

Luckily this new 'ride' has some pink and Minnie Mouse, ha!
After her dance class, she spent some time with us, riding her scooter in some 'tight' places, putting puzzles together and playing Sponge Bob Operation and Candyland. She is always on the move and such a joy to have around. It's hard to believe that in just a few weeks she will be 3! Seriously, where does the time go?!

Oh and can we talk about her adorable sweater?! She must be the most trendy two year old around =)


A BAKER she will be....

Cierra has really gotten into baking lately.  Her Christmas list included Wilton kits that she needs for the courses along with other 'goodies' she can use to practice.

Last night she decided to make some cookies....
lots of 'em -

which turned out really cute -
and she even made us some buffalo chicken dip -

And when Ronnie ran into Walmart tonight and saw this little 'baker', it seemed like the perfect gift for Cierra.  (even though it is missing one cupcake, lol!)
Happy Baking Cierra!  Can't wait to see what you whip up next =)


ANOTHER fun night -

It's funny because I think sometimes we get 'bad rap' because we LOVE to spend time at some of the wineries that are close by. So, just for kicks (and giggles) I thought I would take a few minutes to share the top 10 reasons we LOVE it so much:

  1. We have several to chose from, less than an hour from our house.
  2. Free music/entertainment.
  3. It's cheap.....one bottle of wine is less than $20 and equates to 4 drinks.  
  4. Quaint.  Each have their own decor but are all very cozy/country.
  5. Quiet.  Even when there's more than just the two of us, it's very enjoyable to just chill out and relax for a few hours.  
  6. Some of our best decisions have been made over a nice bottle of wine ;)
  7. Very educational.  We have learned so much about 'grapes' and boy are there lots of different kinds, ha!  
  8. The festivals - We enjoy attending the festivals where all the wineries come together, putting together a day or weekend of fun!
  9. Members only clubs - most if not all of the wineries have clubs.  We are only members of two however the discounts and 'private' events are wonderful!
  10. Friends!  We have made so many new friends over the past year (or so).  And, we even stay connected through my blog or FB or e:mail.  Friday night wasn't any different, we were able to spend time with these two -
    Stephanie and Paige are home from college but will soon be heading back. We were happy to be able to spend a few Friday nights with them and their parents (who own Knob Hall =). So there you have it. Wineries = Fun times and Good Friends!


Baby it's COLD out there...

That's one of my favorite holiday tunes and tonight, it's SO fitting! We have gone from the 60's all the way down to the teens in just 48 hours. Shew.......! 

And speaking of cold?! Well, nothing must do but for Ronnie, Chase and Cam to partake in their own Polar Bear Plunge in Ocean City on New Year's Day -
Luckily the air temp was nearly 60 but the water?! well, it was in the 40's. COLD!

They stripped down to their trunks then - ready, set, go!
Then totally in and under -
and out of the water they came!
straight to the hotel hot tub, ha!

I have a video too but haven't uploaded yet to share. It's certainly a classic =)

Of course, Cierra, Courtney and I didn't share in any of that fun since we were responsible for all the cameras and the girls wanted some pictures -
Just before we left, we bottled up some sand from one of our top 5 "favorite places on earth", trying to save the sands of time....



We don't make a trip to the beach without stopping to see Nanny.  So mid afternoon the six of us traipsed in for a quick visit.

Nanny, well she's not your typical 82 year old.  She spends a fair amount of time on the computer/internet and has even been known to surprise the county court house by responding on-line versus in person, ha!  She goes out and about whenever she pleases and doesn't require a lot of maintenance.  Honestly, it's amazing, impressive and only something we can hope for.

Yesterday's conversation was all about the holidays and she received a gift that even I didn't know existed.
Now she can dig out all her albums, play 'em, hook the USB to her computer and move 'em right over.. Pretty cool huh?!

But I have to be honest, the best story of all is about her moccasins.  Cierra noticed them and said "I like your moccasins, Nanny", only for Nanny to say "yep, Carolyn gave them to me.  She didn't like.  They're UGGs."  I thought Cierra was going to pee her pants.  UGG moccasins were on her Christmas list but for the price of one pair, she could get 3 or 4 cheaper pairs.  We laughed and laughed about an 82 year old having UGG moccasins while a 15 year old didn't get them from Santa.

So once again, Nanny didn't let us down.  She's keeping right up with the latest trends =)


a HAPPY New Year!

That's what I wish for all my 'blog' friends! I can say that our's has certainly started off great! We said 'good-bye' to 2011 with two of our really good friends,
were greeted shortly after 1 a.m. by our four travel partners (although only two opted for photos, lol!)
woke up to the sounds of the ocean and this beautiful sunrise!
So honestly, how much better can the year start off?! 

Well, it's not going to start off with New Year's resolutions that I never seem to keep. In lieu of that though, I have created somewhat of a '2012 to-do' (or hope to do) list.

  1. organize my photos.  Shew...I just can't seem to find that perfect way to accomplish this.  I use iPhoto so have 'events'.  Have three Western Digital books and then have some in Photoshop something or other.  Any suggestions?
  2. Use coupons more.....I honestly could save a lot of money if I used the many coupons I get (or have access to).  
  3. Read the bible on my iPad app.  I downloaded a really cool app and so far LOVE.  Now, to stick with it.
  4. Exercise regularly.  I'm hit or miss here and have about 5 (or so) pounds that I would love to lose.  I feel so much better when I take the time to work out each day.
  5. Simplify....everything needs to be simplified for me.  I have camera equipment that I don't use/need.  I have books that someone else can certainly enjoy.  Now that I have my iPad, can get rid of my eReader.  Just some 'clutter' that is not adding much value.  hmmm....
  6. Paint our bedroom.  
  7. Organize/decorate/paint our exercise room
  8. Sew more.  I have so many cute kits and love to spend time in that room.  
  9. Shop with "green" (reusable) bags.  I hate those plastic bags and have many of these reusable bags.  It's amazing how much stuff you can get in these bags AND they sit better in the back of the car.  

Hopefully this isn't too much to accomplish but I know I will feel much better if I can do it.  

So CHEERS to each of you for a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year.  May 2012 be all you want it to be!