Sunday, October 25, 2009

My 1st Giveaway!

GIVEAWAY CONTEST CLOSED.  Winner to be announced later today (after I get back from taking RJ to the movies.)

In honor of reaching my October Goal of 20 Followers, I am officially having my first Giveaway.  Yeah!

After a little bit of thought I've decided to pay a bit of homage to The Pioneer Woman, as it was her blog that got me inspired to start my own blog.  In the early part of this year, Krissy had forwarded a link to a recipe for Whiskey Glazed Carrots, which was of course from PW.  I soon came across her Black Heels to Tractor Wheels love story and I was hooked.

So, in honor of Pioneer Woman, cooking and blogging, I am giving away a copy of her new cookbook "Pioneer Woman Cooks". If you aren't familiar with the book, click on the link and read all about it.  It looks like such fun.

To enter, all you need to do is write a comment that tells me what you like about reading or writing blogs.  Obviously, there is no right answer.  I'm just interested in what you think.  Only one entry per person will be allowed.

Any bloggers out there who post a link on their blogs about my giveaway will get an second entry. All you have to do is make note in your comment that you have or are going to post a link on your blog and I'll make sure you have two entries in the drawing.

The giveaway will be open all week, officially closing on Saturday, October 31 at 11:00pm ET.  The winner will be chosen by random and announced on Sunday, November 1.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Dorothy Was Right

I can't tell you how happy I am that I posted the previous post when I did because our next adventure wasn't nearly as wonderful.

On Sunday afternoon, within about an hour of each other, Austin, Krissy and I got really, really sick.  Some sort of stomach virus that allowed us to confirm...Austin doesn't chew his food very well.  Ugh.

It has been years since I've felt this bad.  Krissy and I were up most of the night visiting the facilities. (I can't believe the number of food commercials on TV in the middle of the night.  A Long John Silver's commercial, when you feel like dog ka-ka, is just beyond disgusting.)  We were supposed to fly out of Portland on Monday morning and there was just no way any of us could make it.  So at 4am I called NWA and a wonderful woman helped me move the flights to Tuesday.  Granted there was a $150 change fee per ticket...but I was so thankful I didn't have to fly that day, that I cried on the phone.  That's how bad I felt.

We were finally able to start functioning a bit on Monday morning and were able to get Austin stabalized (how do you explain to a 18 month old that he can't eat and drink everything in sight) and were all able to handle the drive from Bend to Portland.  We spent the night at a hotel near the airport (I again love Sleep Number beds) and the flights home were very smooth. 

We surely need to thank Kelly and Ryan for their hospitality and for their TWO bathrooms.  I sure hope you can one day get the smell out of Reid's car seat.  And I will do my best to focus my memories on the first part of the vacation, but if I've confirmed anything it's that there's no place like home.

Friday, October 16, 2009

We've Gone Around the Bend

Krissy and I are currently in Bend, Oregon.  For me...the non-world traveller that I am, this is a big deal.  We are here visiting Kelly who is one of Krissy's BEST friends from law school.  I came along as extra hands as she also brought along Austin.  He has been an amazing traveller and on the prop-plane that we took from Seattle to Portland, he was a better travelling campanion that Oma. (The pilot came on to announce that the flight attendants would remain seated as he was anticipating quite a bit of turbulance.  I proceeded to make it through 3 decades of the rosary before we even took off.)

We spent the last two days in Dundee, Oregon which is the center of Oregon Wine County.  We stayed at an incredible inn called the Inn at Red Hills.  Please check out the website as it was freakin' amazing.  Our room had two king size Select Comfort beds and H2O Spa products in the bathroom.  I love Select Comfort beds and H2O products are just my fav.

The inn has a wonderful restaurant called "From Farm to Fork" and I clearly spent the last two days eating like a goddess. The restaurant uses the sustainable food approach leveraging local products to create it's diverse menu.  Krissy loved the tomato, pesto, mozzarella salad and last night I ordered their hamburger, which sounds quite ordinary, but seriously they took the burger to a whole new level.  It had garlic aoili and white chedder cheese served on a sesame brioche bun. I hummed through the whole meal.  It was paired with a lovely glass (or two) of Pinot Noir.  Oregon Wine Country is known for their Pinots. 

If you are ever looking for a romantic destination or girls week-end in Oregon, this is the place to go. 

Sunday, October 11, 2009

For the Young Mothers....

A few years back, I saw a movie called The Royal Tenenbaums. A good movie about a very quirky and troubled family. There was a great deal of attention paid to the interior of the house that served as the backdrop for much of the movie. Up the stairway in the house were framed pictures of all the children's school art work. I just loved the way it looked and I have since created a similar look on my own stairwell.  Not nearly as impressive as the wall in the movie, but more special since it's from my kids.

My only regret is that I didn't start this idea years ago.  Most of the art work is Stinky's, with just a couple from Caitlin.  And, unfortunately, none from Krissy. 

So, the point of this post...if you're a young mom now, start saving your children's best art work.  You may not have time now to do all the framing, but some day you will.  Once framed you will have them to enjoy for years to come.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Cards of the Week

I made a few cards the other night and I'm so pleased with them that I wanted to post them.  They aren't for any card sketch.  I just made some very simple cards using a little technique that I really liked.  I can't take credit for new technique.  I got the idea from Kristina over at kwenerdesign.  She is a very talented and trained graphic designer.

Every week on Monday and Friday, she posts videos on how to make one of her card designs.  They are really wonderful and very helpful.  I can't thank her enough for teaching me new something new every week.  I think she's just amazing.  (Plus I love that she always has her nails done!)

Recently she made some simple cards using a flourish stamp and then just highlighted parts of it using a white gel pen.  So simple, but so pretty.  Here's what I got using the same process.

I don't know if you can tell, but the white gel pen just makes the image pop.  I like the front two best.

She even taught me that if you mess up a stamp a little bit...just add a flower to cover it up.  Adding the little jewel, was my idea.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Card of the Week and So Much More!

Today is Caity's birthday.  Twenty-nine years ago today I had my sweet baby girl.  She came out a little wrinkled and looked like an old man...but she soon turned into such a beautiful little girl.  She had such delicate features and such a sensitive and caring personality.  I have always felt that, although Kristen was born first, it was Caity who taught me how to be a mother.

It seems impossible that so many years have gone by and that now she has grown into a beautiful and talented young woman.  Happy Birthday Caity-Bubbles.  We love you soooo much.

By the way, here's her birthday card.  I finished it a couple days ago, but I didn't want to post until today.  It just so happens to also be my submission to the CPS sketch of the week. 

How convenient, don't you think.

And finally, tonight Caity and I along with a few of our friends are going downtown to see So You Think You Can Dance.  We are going to dinner in Greektown and then off to the show.  We love this show.  It just so much fun.  The talent on the stage is amazing and then we get to scream and yell and behave like 14-year-olds.   Looking forward to a wonderful evening.  What a great way to spend a birth day.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Missed my train...of thought

Dear Fellow bloggers,

Do you ever have a really good idea of something you want to blog about, but you are away from the computer.  So you think...I'll do that one tonight or tomorrow.  You get home and ready to blog and ya got....Nothing!  Zip, nada, nothing.  I had a good idea, atleast it seemed like it at the time, but I can't for the life of me remember what it was.

So on to other things...the new TV season.

Here's the New Shows I love:

Glee:  Love everything about this program, especially all the performances!  Love the lead girl (Lea Michelle).  Her character is very funny and her voice is just amazing.  One of the characters is a guy named Finn and I think this is officially my new favorite guys name.  (I visited a blog recently and she was taking a poll to help her decide on the name for her soon to be born son.  Finn was one of them and well, of course...that's what I voted for.)  If you haven't watched this, please do so. 

The Good Wife:  Ever wanted to gain perspective on those political wives who "stand by their man" during unbelievably emabarrassing press conference.  Then this might be the show for you.  The show focuses on how the main character goes about rebuilding her life and her career after finding out that her State Attorney husband has been very busy with prostituion...supporting it..not remove it from our streets.

 I love the diacotomy of her love/hate relationship with her mother-in-law who is essential in helping her take care of the kids but is also frustrating by constant nudging to forgive her husband, who just made a "little mistake".  Also nice to have "Big" back on TV. 

Then there the Old Reliables:

So You Think You Can Dance -Season 6:  Normally a summertime replacement program, SYTYCD has finally garnered a large enough audience to make it to the big time...the Fall Season.  The show is still in the auditioning phase, but some of the dancers so far have been amazing.  We are still hoping for the 1st tapper to make it in to the top twenty.

The Office:  Still my favorite show on the telly.  Yes, it's frequently uncomfortable humor, but the characters are so well developed and quirky that I just can't resist.  The opening sequence, before the theme song plays, has some of the funniest moments on TV.  AND...Jim and Pam are getting married next week.  I can't wait.   They are my favorite pretend couple. 

The Mentalist:  I think this one started in the summer too, but I really enjoy this spin on the typical police story.  OK, Simon Baker doesn't hurt the eyes either.

(The female lead is Robin Tunney and she was in 1995's Empire Record, which is kind of a cult classic for 1980's generation.  Saw some of it on TV recently and was amazed when I recognized her and couldn't wait to tell Krissy and Cait.)

Lie to Me:  Last, but not least is this other summer released series.  I really enjoy the high tech analysis of facial and physical gestures that indicate lying as well as a host of other feelings.  Don't know for sure if it's all real or not, but the program frequently uses images of real life people who are lying, cheating, re-enforce their points.  Pretty clever actually.  (and yes, Bill Clinton's image has been used many times.)

I'll let you know if anything else catches my eye.