Thursday, December 29, 2011

Roller Skating...

Not many people know that, when I was younger, I used to roller skate. Not the normal skating around and around a roller rink, but I actually learned jumps and spins (none of which I was good at). I roller skated from the age of 5 until I was 12. It was then, that I lost all appeal for it. I sucked at it (Others said I didn't, but I have high expectations for myself) and I only had one friend in the class, who dropped out a few weeks before I did. It just wasn't my forte.

My sister, on the other hand, used to watch me at lessons and decided that it was something she would like to do. So at the ripe old age of 3 (although, truth be told, she probably used my skates in our carpeted living room at age 2) she started skating. She was good at it... Heck, she was even great at it. I won't reveal her age, but she has been skating every year, since. This year she got a job being an assistant teacher for our local rec center and ever since Elijah was born she has been dying to get him on skates.

A few months ago, she got to do just that: 

There was a lot of slipping

And Marching

And falling

But he eventually made it out on the floor

He was not thrilled, so they went back on the carpet

He did great, for it being his first time

Reach (and my mom) even talked me into putting some on.

A few spins around felt good, but at that point Elijah was fed up with the whole skating thing (because he's apparently hard on himself also) and decided that playing Angry Birds sounded like a better option. He must have enjoyed himself, though, because for the next few weeks all I heard about was "Let's go skating with Aunt Reach with yellow and orange roller skates"

My child....

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Project SCRAP...

I was excited to find that at the beginning of this year, my favorite digital scrapbook designer (Shabby Princess) had a wonderful idea. It was a way of taking pictures and scrapbooking without feeling overwhelmed each month. It is called Project SCRAP.

You take at least two pictures per week and do two layouts a month. Because of my hiatus from crafting, I made a personal goal of taking the pictures (which I have sucessfully done, so far). Now that the hiatus is over, I plan on doing both, because (much to my surprise and glee) they are continuing it next year.

They make the whole process so easy too. Once a month they post a check-in, inspiration and a template to use, if you want. I plan to use them, since I feel like this is going to make the whole process easier and faster. Even if you are a paper scrapbooker, you can follow right along with it, that's one of the best parts.

So, if you feel inclined, go over and check it out. I (for one) can't wait to get started....

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

A Year Without Crafting...

When I found out I was pregnant with Caleb a lot was going on. We had a new set of people living in our house, it was fall and beginning to be winter and I was in the foulest mood I have ever been in, in my life. It was for no particular reason, I just hate that time of the year and I get in a "funk" every year for the past 5 or so years. So in the midst of all of that, I decided with having no time and actually not wanting to do anything, I would not craft, at all, for the next year (meaning all of 2011).

I'm proud to say that I have almost made it and I'm actually glad I set that goal (if you want to call it that). At first it was just a load off my mind, not to have to think about what I was going to do for a card for a certain special occasion. Don't get me wrong, I really love making cards and doing crafts, but when you have all day sickness and feel horrible all the time, it's just one less thing to think about.

Then after a while, it was more than just a load off my mind, it made me excited to think about what I could be doing when I came off of "hiatus"... Thanks to Pinterest and some enabling blogs these are some of things I might try to do:


This is along with the usual

Should keep me busy. But I must admit, I am cheating a bit. During the month of December not only did a try crocheting, cause it looked easy (I was completely wrong), but I am planning on making this for my neices for Christmas:

Considering this is the week of Christmas and I haven't started on the design, yet, shows that I am overconfident in the whole creation process. I guess we will see if it's done by Christmas. Only time will tell...

I hope everyone has a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

The Winner is...

Hello everyone! Thanks for entering my giveaway and for sharing your favorite book. I recently received a Nook Tablet from my parents as an early Christmas/Birthday present and can't wait to load it up. I will definitely check out all your favorites and add them to my ever growing "want to read" list.

Speaking of reading, I read my first book with Caleb the night before last... Well, it was the first time he actually sat through the whole thing without crying... He seemed to enjoy it. And now with Elijah "semi-reading", he can read books to Caleb too. I just hope he likes them as much as Elijah does.

Speaking of Elijah (how is that for a very long segway?) he came to have lunch with me today and while he was here, he picked the winner of the giveaway. That winner just happens to be...

Debbie in KY

Congrats! Email me at Jo21236 (at) yahoo (.com) with your info and I will send it to you right away.

I hope everyone has a great day!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Declare Your Love - Christmas Shows

It's that time of year. The time when you look forward to (or dread) all the Christmas shows that are on during the month of December. So I thought I would declare my love for:

A Christmas Story

This is hands down my favorite Christmas movie. The family is so disfunctional that I can totally relate... And even though the plot is so crazy, it could happen to anyone. I can't wait for the 24-hour marathon to come on, on Christmas Eve/Christmas Day. It's the highlight of my Christmas season.

What about you? What is your favorite Christmas show or movie?

As an aside, the giveaway for the $30 Barnes and Noble gift card ends at midnight (EST) tomorrow night. If you haven't already entered, go ahead, what do you have to lose?

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

30 days until 30 years... GIVEAWAY!

I can't believe I'm going to be 30 in a month. It seems like the last 10 years of my life went by entirely too fast. But in spite of all of that, I'm going to take 30 by the horns and enjoy it as much as I can. I mean, I've got a lot going for me. I have a great husband, two wonderful little boys (as requested, no girls allowed, j/k, haha) and a very loving dog. I have a full time job that pays well and is relatively secure. I have a car, a place to live and food to eat. I've accomplished most of my goals, in life. While there are a few remaining, like buying our own house and having my own business, I figure Rome wasn't built in a day. As our pastor once pointed out, Susan Boyle was 48 when she had her dreams come true... So I figure I have at least 18 years left to hope...

In honor of my upcoming birthday, I decided to celebrate with a giveaway... And as it turns out, my birthday is two days before Christmas, so 30 days before sounded like the perfect time for it. Don't you agree? I'm giving away a...

$30 Barnes and Noble Gift Card

One of my favorite places to go, because, I don't know about you, but I love me some books. Classic books, kids books, mystery books, E-books, history books, magazines, cookbooks... You name it, I love to read it... When I have the chance to read.

Here is how to enter:

Chance #1 - Comment with the title of your favorite book
Chance #2 - Post about the giveaway on your blog or on facebook and comment with the link

Comments will be closed on November 30th at 12am(midnight) EST. I will post the winner on December 1st, so be sure to check back. This is open to everyone, everywhere, since you can use it online too.

Thanks for stopping by and good luck!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Elijah's room - The Finished Product

It's been a year and five months since I started talking about remodeling Elijah's room. I will fully blame the fact that I was pregnant for 9 months for not updating about this for about a year. However, with all that in the past I can finally show you a semi-clean, almost completely done remodel of his room. You can see the previous posts here

This is what it looked like before:

It was definitely just a room to sleep in.

But now it's a room he likes to play in

I'm sorry for the lighting, it was a very bright day out. A little update on things we decided on... We went with a regular boring old, cheap, lamp from Ikea. Joe's parents gave Elijah the TV for Christmas and we bought a super cool arm mount from Costco, so no matter where the bed is moved, in the room, the TV can be turned towards it.

We ended up buying the curtains that I linked to in a previous post, because they were 70% off, on sale. I went with shorter curtains too, so he wouldn't get the urge to play in them.

This is what you see when you come into the room. For the clothesline I just used two eyelets, screwed them into the wall, then strung twine across it. The things are held on by binder clips. You can see the "ELIJAH" poster we bought him from the fair last year. It has Elmo on it, cause at the time, he loved Elmo. We call the beanbag chair and the Cars chair his "sitting area", so he can entertain people and have places for them to sit. (cause, you know, he's sooo popular)

We keep the chalk for the chalkboard wall in an old Lego container (the Legos are stored elsewhere) and the bed, is the end of the tour. It was laundry day, that is why all the linens are off his bed. It was the only time I was at home that I remembered to take pictures, so I figured no one would care.

You know what is ironic about this post and these pictures? His bed was soon going to be exchanged for a twin size bed, cause Caleb needs the mattress for his crib. So, this past weekend we moved Elijah into a new bed and Caleb into Elijah's old crib. Everyone seems to be adjusting pretty well...

Until next time...

Tuesday, November 15, 2011


Elijah got to experience one of the joys of childhood, for the first time, this year. He got to play in a pile of leaves.

At first he didn't know what to do

But he got the hang of it really fast

Then Penelope joined in the fun

And Charlotte too

You can see the joy on their faces

They had so much fun that they did it again this past weekend
In a -huge- pile of leaves, this time.

Even Daddy/Uncle Joe joined in the fun

Caleb "jumped" in too.
He was not thrilled...

Then the kids got put to work, picking up all the leaves

They did a great job.

And seeing how my in-laws still have a bunch of leaves on the tree, that have yet to fall, we might be able to have one more playing session before the season is out. Gotta love fun in the great outdoors.

Until next time...

Friday, November 11, 2011

Harvest Party...

This year we wanted to get more involved with our church, because, as I've said before, there are a ton of people who attend and it's easy to get lost in the shuffle. So when I received a little card inviting me to try out this thing called MomsConnect, I did. MomsConnect is a group that meets once a month. Everyone in the group is a mother of at least one child 5-years-old or younger. I went the first week and had so much fun that I plan to continue to go until they break next summer.

In addition to the monthly get togethers, they have random fun stuff to do a few times a month, that is completely optional. Most of the things we have to miss out on because I work, but we got to attend the Harvest party they put together.

It was at the church on a rainy Saturday morning. It was very warm, cozy and fun.

Elijah got to do a few crafts

In her hand is a handprint turkey with feathers and a googly eye
(a better picture is below)

Then we made a scarecrow out of some of Elijah's old clothes

One little boy had a great idea of putting hay inside a baby sleeper
(like Caleb's size)
I will have to remember that for next time.
Elijah got to hang out with some of the kids.
I think he knew some of them from childcare

Then he made a thankfulness wreath

Caleb hung out the whole time
Can you believe this is one of the only pics of him in his costume?

The parachute (I think that's what it's called) was a big hit

When we got home we hung up his artwork on the clothesline in his room.

Which, by the way, is pretty much done, so stay tuned, because in the next week I will be showing off the rest of Elijah's made-over room.

Until next time...

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Fall Photos...

I made the mistake of thinking that taking photos of the boys and Azalea would be easy. So we set out to go to the park near our house that has a big field that hardly anyone uses. We ended up having to take two cars, cause we brought Azalea and the wagon to transport everything. Because all of that would not would not fit in Joe's Toyota Corolla. I'm pretty happy with the results though. Nothing spectactular, but some nice pictures to bring back memories years down the road.

We started walking to the field, Caleb being held and
Elijah helping out by holding the pumpkins and
making sure they stayed in the wagon

We got to the field, set up and realized this was not the best idea.
How was I going to get some good pics with three non-cooperating subjects?
But we rolled with it and it ended up turning out fine.
Caleb was content and ready to go.

Unfortunately he was more interested at looking
everywhere else besides the camera
Azalea was also distracted by a dog that was playing off camera

She did the best she could to stay put.
Then Elijah decided to talk to Caleb for a few minutes
Which was fine with him, cause Caleb loves studying Elijah's every move

Everyone was pretty bored

Then they saw something in the sky
(I have no idea what it was)
So I actually got a pic of them looking in the same direction
Azalea was itching to play, so we let her go

This is one of my favorites

I gave up on the group shots at that point

And decided individual pictures would be the best thing

Even Azalea decided to take a break and pose for a picture

After Elijah and Azalea wondered off Caleb was
left all alone... with just his pumpkin to keep him company.