I think this will be the last contest post for awhile. Time to get back to some regularly scheduled programming.
Of course, I'd love to win it, but you, too, can join in the frenzy by heading over here. This incredible prize is valued at $799.99 and is courtesy of Best Buy. We've already been quite happy with the service there. I'd be REEAAAALLLLLLYYYYYYY ecstatically happy with them if I won the tv!
However, if you win, I'll be really happy for you too! (grin!)
A Paper Shredder! Woo Hoo!
What does it say about me when I get all jazzed over a paper shredder? Actually, it's not JUST a paper shredder - it also shreds credit cards and CDs. Into tiny little diamond shapes. Up to twelve sheets at a time.
I suppose it's the fact that I've never owned a shredder and the few times I've borrowed one, I never got entirely caught up. So I have accumulated an enormous amount of stuff to shred. I've been looking at them for a few weeks and since it's back-to-school time, there are some awesome sales happening.
So there you go - my big, exciting life. A new paper shredder. LOL!
Maybe the next time Shannon hosts the big giveaway carnival, I'll get in a little sooner. In the meantime, Robin gets the distinguished honor of winning the farm, so to speak. I didn't even have to use a random drawing generator or anything. No little slips of paper in a bucket/hat/pan/basket, etc. Hmmm . . . maybe I won't jump on board the big deal event. Maybe it's just easier to host my own little giveaway for one person. Tee hee!
So . . . I definitely won't have the traffic I'd have had by being linked over at Rocks in My Dryer, but on the chance that there's anyone at all reading my blog and that person (or two) might be interested in this stuff (since I went to the trouble and all), I'm still posting mine. I'll just call my giveaway something else. The Sad, Late Doggie Giveaway.
On a happy note, chances of very many people entering for these items are much slimmer now - since I'm not connected via the BIG contest. So . . . if you want any of them, your odds are probably really good! Since I'm a little late getting this post up and my reader base isn't all that large, I'll keep this open until 10:00 p.m. MST Saturday, July 29th to enter.
And since Shannon started all of this, you can still pop on over to Dog Days of Summer Givewaway and enter to win giveaways posted by 506 bloggers!!! Holy cow!! Can you believe it?!?!? I hope you win something!
Yikes - I am SO behind on getting this post up. I think it has to do with orchestrating a surprise for my sister's 40th birthday* that took place yesterday. It kind of occupied the first part of my week.
* there will be more to follow on this one - it was pretty tricky, given that she's been a collaborator in three other birthday surprises over the past few years! But Mom & I pulled it off! Complete with a flock of pink flamingos which flew in and roosted all over her front yard!
So, without further adieu, here are my FOUR DIFFERENT PACKAGES to give away!
"Basket of Blossoms" Stampin' Up! rubber stamp set (in original box) with an assortment of cardstock (see photo below).
"Wonderful Woodcuts" Stampin' Up! rubber stamp set (in original box) with an assortment of cardstock (see photo below).
"Delightful Doodles" Stampin' Up! rubber stamp set (in original box) with an assortment of cardstock (see photo below).
Cardstock Assortment - included with each package above
The photo did a terrible job with the colors. There are neutral colors (white, ivory, confetti, etc.), amethyst, green, blues, and pink pieces of cardstock &/or cards. There are also some envelopes and a pre-stamped piece. I will also include a few embellishments (ribbon, eyelets, etc.)
As to the stamp sets & supplies - I was a demonstrator with Stampin' Up! for 8 years (plus an avid stamper for an addition 3-4 years on either side of that). I'm extremely
Microsoft Picture It! Version 10 - The CD & manual are both in excellent condition. I purchased it brand new, used it a few times and never even loaded it onto my next computer. I have since purchased Photoshop Elements, so I'd like to share this with someone else.
Please indicate in your post which package(s) you're interested in. As Barb mentioned in her Dog Days post, "And remember, if your comment leads me to a dead end, you're not really entered. 'kay?"
Note: due to shipping costs, this is only open to residents of the U.S.
Speaking of Real Women Scrap, I just received the book Real Women Scrap by Tasra Dawson today. I won it courtesy of 5 Minutes for Mom. I'm so excited to get this! I've only read the intro, but it's looking great.
I'll let you know.
A few weeks ago, it was time to do the hair thing. This kit has turned out quite nicely for a number of years now, but this time the highlighting wasn't really okay. At least I didn't think so.
Hmm . . . let it go and ignore the almost-non-existent highlights that started too far out from my scalp or re-highlight? I'll take option B, Alex. So off to the store yet again. I didn't think locating a highlighting kit for dark brown hair would be so difficult. But that's what I get for thinking.
Some brands only offered kits for blondes. Since I wasn't planning on the zebra look, I continued the search. Success, at last! A "Frost & Design" kit that claims it's for "Light Brown to Dark Brown Long Hair" and "For Natural or Color-Treated Hair." It's H65 Caramel. Perfect.
Saturday morning rolls around and I'm ready to go. I decide that a thorough reading of the instructions would be prudent. You know, just so I don't end out with orange stripes or strips of hair falling out or a head of green lettuce (for all you Dick Van Dyke fans). Let's see . . .
"Do a preliminary strand test before you begin" - yeah, whatever. Those are for the nervous and cautious types, not a crazy, bold woman with more hair than brains!
"Be sure your hair is dry" Check. It really does dry . . . eventually.
"How to put on your highlighting cap. Comb hair straight back, or in the style that you like." Um, okay. I don't ever comb my hair, so that negates the "style that I like" version. I guess I'll go for the "hair straight (as it can be) back. Twenty minutes later, I've
"Put on the Highlighting Cap and tie it snugly. Tuck hair in under cap." Time for a visual aid. For you.
See this cap?
See this hair?
To what can I liken this activity?
1. Putting a dozen greased cats into a coffee can?
2. Returning a set of fleece king-sized sheets to their ultra-sleek, teeny, little, zippered plastic bag?
3. Getting a room of twenty-five 3 year olds who've each just had a package of twinkies to sit still and quiet on one row of bleachers for 10 minutes? In height order?
I think you get the idea. Basically, there was NO WAY this hair was going to fit into that cap. But thinking myself fairly resourceful, I decide to start pulling some strands through the holes. Maybe this will free up some space inside the really tight cap-made-for-a-baby's-head. Then I can "tuck hair in under cap." Oops, there I go - thinking again.
Did I mention I have REALLY THICK hair? Or maybe you already noticed that from the picture! Maybe you also noticed the reason I NEVER comb my hair.
Moving right along, I've pulled some hair (sort of) through about 7-8 holes. A couple look like miniature fountains, as the length of the hair wouldn't come all the way through. Another one ripped into a bigger hole, creating the likelihood that I'd have a big old glob of highlighting substance right there on top of my head (also not a look I had in mind). Plus I'm really enjoying the metal crochet hook to yank my gigantic hair through teeny, tiny little holes. Yeah, that feels great. Sort of like having teeth pulled feels great.
So maybe this isn't such a good idea after all. Maybe I shouldn't have gotten one of those silly baby-bonnet-cap-type kits. Maybe they should put lycra in those. And some spandex. Oh, and a stylist in the box.
So I ran off to the store - again - and found another kit. The type with a little flat paintbrush, a large mascara brush, and NO made-for-a-Barbie-doll-head cap. Much better.
While beginning yet another hair experiment upon myself, a song pops uninvited into my head. "You're So Vain" by Carly Simon. Do you suppose God was using Ms. Simon to tell me something?
In the meantime, click on the sweet little doggy and find out more, join in, or just see what's going on at Shannon's place. BTW, she was recently in Colorado and you have got to see her pix. I really need to get out more in my own state. It's so beautiful!
Just the same. I am working on getting in more exercise, though. Curves is great for increasing my energy level and keeping me from crashing in the afternoon. It's also good for improved flexibility. However, after a good walk this morning, I can tell that I'm not getting that muscle burn that feels so good when I go to Curves. I do try and really focus on the muscle group being used and work them well. But there hasn't been a burn since I first joined. That's okay, I'll keep going, but I'm adding some home exercise video workouts as well as some walking. I know that the activity has to increase.
Choosing to see the good side of things, I'm grateful that my weight hasn't gone up! And all this HOT weather encourages me to drink LOTS more water! :D
About a handful of times a year, hubby, the boys, and I get an ENTIRE DAY, from waking up to going to bed, TOGETHER with no other obligations. Not one. This was one of those rare treats. It's not even that we're a super busy family or anything, but there are certain things we do on a regular basis every weekend that mean every single day has at least SOME obligation. Most of the time it's fine, but every once in awhile, it is such a blessing to just have us and an entire day.
We schlepped around the mouse most of the morning. I gave hubby and my youngest son hair cuts. Took a shower at noon! We all got ready and headed off to Fatburger for an insanely pricey and delicious lunch of hamburgers and turkey burgers and yummy fries and onion rings. Hangman has become our "go-to game" when we're waiting for food at restaurants, so we got a few rounds in on our new Travel Hangman.
Next it was off to Vitamin Cottage for the cheapest Tazo Vanilla Chai in town. It was time to stock up for the next couple of weeks.
We've been trying to get out for a couple rounds of golf recently and we finally made it. Fun, fun, fun! We played two courses (of the miniature persuasion).
Here's hubby getting ready to tee off near the spitting dophin.
Next we have my oldest son relaxing (sort of?) in the mouth of a hippo!
Then there's my water-loving son who bypasses the bridge. Anything to get his feet in the nice, cool water!
All in all it turned out to be a super day!
Thought I'd get something up for Wordless Wednesday, but obviously that didn't happen either. You can go check out some other WW pix though.
There's some big news over at Sprittibee if you'd like to find out the lastest in their life adventures.
A dear 27-year old single mom is in tremendous need of prayer and encouragement. I found out about her via Especially Heather (who also needs continued prayer and encouragement). Please add Nicole and her son to your prayers.
I've just been in and out (mostly out) a LOT this week, it seems. As much as I try to get things done around the house, I'm not accomplishing much. More of a one step forward, two steps back kind of deal. Sigh.
Tonight I'm off to a rubber stamp club gathering. Should be fun and then we (Mom, my friend, and me) get to head over to Starbucks. Yum! My sister's working tonight, so we'll pop in and say "hi" to her.
Oh, I know I've mentioned sleep issues in the past and my mom recently told me about a wonderfully awesome thing to help. You just rub a couple of drops of lavender oil on the bottom of your feet before going to sleep (be sure to wash your hands afterwards). It really works! Really well! Hubby & I have both been sleeping SO well. It doesn't make you all groggy and goofy in the morning like the PM pain revlievers can. Even my mom, who has had some bigger sleep issues than me for quite awhile, has been sleeping marvelously for around 3 weeks now. Plus it smells good!
And no, there's no correlation between the Starbucks visit at night and sleeplessness! LOL! On those nights of insomnia, I hadn't had any caffeine since around lunch time.
That's about it, I guess. Oh, I need to get cracking on school plans for this year, as we need to start within the next month.
It's always something, but that's okay. Life may seem a little chaotic at times (from my perspective), but honestly, my life is pretty good really. Things could be so much more difficult. But whether it's easy or hard, chaotic or smooth, God is always there. He's always available, He's always faithful, and He'll never leave nor forsake me (or you!).
Blessings to you!
I don't want anything we have.
I don't want to eat anything else.
I don't want to eat out.
I don't want to eat at home.
I don't really want to eat.
But I'm hungry and I have a husband and two boys to feed.
We've grilled and grilled and grilled some more.
We've had salads.
We've eaten out.
Blech! This makes me insane. Plus I feel like a terrible wife/mom for doing such a pathetic job of providing meals for my family.
Breakfast isn't such a big deal. All the males in my house eat cereal. I am good at keeping us equipped with milk (most of the time). I eat a Thompson Brothers Mini Cinnamon Swirl bagel toasted with 1/2 tablespoon of whipped butter. Every day. To drink? A delicious Iced Venti Vanilla Tazo Chai (not Starbucks, just my own thing at home). Also every day.
Maybe all meals should be breakfast. Yeah, cuz we can really live on carbs, milk, and well, nothing else. Not so well.
To top it off, my oldest son is an EXTREMELY picky eater (it's a mother's curse deal). I'm a somewhat picky eater. Hubby and youngest son are easy to please.
So, if you have any brilliant summer eating recipes or ideas (no oven involved please) that don't include wildly exotic type food (ie;
I need to get out of this rut. Very soon. Otherwise my poor family will be eating some form of cereal for every meal.
I don't know the circumstances of the lives of others. I don't know the motivation of their hearts. I don't know what God's plans are for them. I don't really know nearly as much as I might like to think.
So God gently reminded me this morning that when I am critical, I'm attempting to be god myself. It's idolatry and pride. Nothing more and certainly nothing less.
Today I am a little calmer, a little gentler, a little more merciful towards those around me. They are all God's children, created in His image. Either they know Him or they don't. But that doesn't change His heart of love for them. He wants me to have the same heart. And again I thank Him for never leaving me in my sin, but for lovingly reaching down and changing my heart, bit by bit.
It should come as no surprise that God has been emphasizing the "beam in the eye" principle from the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 7:1-5) in my life. I struggle with having a critical heart. I know exactly how everyone ought to act and behave. I also know the best way to do everything, whether it’s driving somewhere, shopping for groceries, or homeschooling. Ironically, I must not follow my advice, because I tend to think pretty poorly of myself and what I do. But since I know all the right answers (ha!), I can become very critical of other people. While there's been improvement, my inner critic still rears its ugly head more often than I'd like.
Last week I was driving to hubby’s work and a big SUV in front of me was driving under the speed limit in the left lane, which totally annoyed me. So I hopped over into the right lane behind a little Celica and then we stopped at the red light. When we took off, the Celica was even worse than the SUV. I tried (really, I did) to be patient, but driving 10mph under the speed limit is just downright wrong (IMHO). So I jumped back over into the left lane. Naturally, the SUV wasn’t going quite fast enough for me to pass the Celica. Not only that, the Celica sped up just enough so that I couldn't get back in the right lane in front of her. I look over at the woman driving, and get this – it’s a lady from my church!! Good grief! Jesus might as well have been sitting in that driver’s seat, shaking His head at my arrogance and impatience! To top it off, the speed limit dropped – by 10mph – because of a construction zone. The same construction zone that caused the left lane to merge into the right lane. So now I had to get back into the right lane (except a big black Ford pickup guy behind the Celica didn’t want to let me in!). Aaaarrrrggghhhh!!
Yes, I was listening to my good Christian music – “Sweetly Broken” by Jeremy Riddle, to be specific (one of my favorite songs). I had to turn it off, because now I just felt stupid. Stupid and convicted. Stupid, convicted, and wretched. Sheesh!
The day before that, I took my kids and two of their friends to Arby’s for lunch. When we parked, my youngest son was observant enough to notice that someone had parked their big old truck WAY over the line so that only a little Tango could possibly fit in the space in front of it. He snidely remarked how that person was so rude to have parked so far over the line. I gently told my son that the truck was pretty big, and really, those parking spaces aren’t all that long, and it’s not a big deal, since there are plenty of other parking spaces, and he really shouldn’t be so critical. Yeah, like I wasn’t already thinking what he was saying.
But even in my thought life, God is convicting me. Left to my own devices, I’d have arrogantly walked by that truck, thinking to myself what a moron that person must be. Not only that, but my thoughts would’ve continued something like this, “Honestly, if you can’t park that big old thing, then maybe you need to buy a smaller car. You have no business driving something like that.” You know, because I’m right and I know the right way to do everything. I wouldn’t have given my pride a second thought, but I’d have walked into Arby’s with a haughty spirit. If I wasn’t careful it could’ve spilled all over the girl taking my order if she didn’t do it just right (according to my book of rules, naturally).
But God said, “No, my daughter. This isn’t pleasing to Me. Please don’t think ill of another one of My children. You don’t even see the enormous tree sticking out of your own eye, so don’t even think about the tiny speck of wood in the eye of the owner of that truck. I love Him as much as I do you. I sent Jesus to die for him just as much as for you. He is every bit as important to Me as you are. I’ve forgiven you for your innumerable transgressions. I've also forgiven him.”
Yes, Lord, You are right – all the time. Not only are You always right, You always do the right thing, unlike me. Forgive me for my proud and haughty spirit. Thank You for loving me enough to humble me and show me how wretched I am. Thank you for reminding me how desperately I need You.
What is a word that your family uses that would not be considered common?
Chippy - My oldest son came up with that word for all really old cars (like stuff from the 20's). The word stuck. A number of years back, we were downtown at a parade and we kept referring to all the Chippies coming down the street. The young boy seated next to us looked at us like we were aliens or something. It was one of those "there is no Santa Claus" moments as I had to explain to the boys that Chippy was just our own family word.
What theme of calendar do you have on your wall this year?
Depends upon the wall. Between the kitchen & dining room is a small retro designed pocket calendar. It's really cute, but the biggest reason for its purchase is that it fits in the little 9-10" wide space. Next to my desk is a Chick-Fil-A cow calendar with its great cow humor and CFA coupons. In the bedroom is a Curves calendar upon which I put little stickers to track how often I exercise.
Name 3 people you speak with on a daily basis.
My mom, my sister, and Jenny (people outside of those living in my house).
If you could put a new tattoo on someone you know - who would it be, what would the tattoo be of, and where would you put it on them?
My husband, his choice, on his calf.
He's been wanting a tattoo for a couple of years now. First he wanted a Scruffy Smiley (it's a Jeep thing), but I was afraid it would look too much like a WalMart smiley and I didn't want people thinking he was refering to WM with his tattoo. So he's come up with a couple of other ideas. I guess when we get around to getting one for him, he'll have to narrow it down to one.
What is the last beverage you drank out of a glass bottle?
Pomegranate Peach Passion White Tea by POM. It actually comes in a glass glass, not a glass bottle.
“Thus may the 4th of July, that glorious and ever memorable day, be celebrated through America, by the sons of freedom, from age to age till time shall be no more. Amen and Amen.”
Virginia Gazette on July 18th, 1777
Today is such an important day - Independence Day. As I try to come up with something to post, I don't even know where to begin. How do I put into words the incredible sacrifices that have been made during the history of these United States so that we, and every other American, can live in freedom?
There were the men (and women) who bravely rejected the oppressive rule of the British monarchy, packed up and traveled away to an unknown destination in order to have religious freedom.
There've been countless men and women who've fought, and even died in many cases, in numerous battles and wars throughout the years.
Just this morning, hubby was looking up information on the invasion at Normandy. His dad fought in WWII. He was there. He was also in the Korean War. He was also a prisoner of war, shot in the leg, and put in a hole. Back in those days, soldiers didn't talk about what happened in war. Hubby has always been extremely interested in WWII. In the latter years of his dad's life, he did get to hear a few stories, but not as much as he'd have liked. Reading the account of a gentleman who went back to the Normandy region of France, hubby found himself missing his dad - a lot. His dad was just one of many who proudly gave of himself and served his country.
Even as I write this, men and women are giving their lives in service for freedom. Whether you agree with this war or not, it doesn't lessen their sacrifices.
How can I address the issues of sacrifice and liberty and not think of Jesus? He gave the ultimate sacrifice for ultimate liberty.
At my house we'll barbeque with family & friends, enjoy the afternoon, and hopefully see some fireworks. But beneath the surface, I will humbly say "thank you" - to God, to Jesus, to the many people who've gone before, and to the many who serve today.
It's so important that we never forget the sacrifices and recognize what we have today because of them.
Hopefully with the sodalessness of my week, increased water (it's too hot here for me), and getting to Curves regularly, I'll see a nice drop next week. Until then, here's a quote from the board at Curves this a.m. that sums it up nicely.
"Eating healthy isn't about being perfect all the time. It's about eating your best most of the time."
So today when I WASN'T having Dr. Pepper, I was praying. Whenever I THINK about Dr. Pepper I stop and pray. Then I drink something else - water, lemonade, milk, iced tea, etc.
I know that I fall short in praying continually, yet I know that is what God calls me to do. I suspect this may be a good start, though. I think quite a bit about Dr. Pepper, so if I turn to God in those moments, my prayer life will definitely increase.
Pray without ceasing;
Give thanks in all things; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
2 Thess 5:16-18
Okay, really it should be Dork Genes, but everytime I say it, it sounds like I'm referring to pants constructed of blue denim. So I'll call them Dork Jeans.
My mom called me the other day to ask if I wanted to know where I got my Dork Jeans from. Well, I pretty much knew the answer to that (they're inherited), but I'm always up for a good DJ story! No, I'm not going to rat out my mom - she can start her own blog and tell her own tales of dorkiness. However, I can certainly tell all the dorky accounts of my own doing, should I be so inclined.
What cracks me up is that I'm really not that ditzy, dorky, etc. I'm a bit silly, for sure, but I still come up with some doozies.
DJ #1: A few years back, hubby installed a nice, new (FREE!) microwave-range hood above the stove. It's quite wide, but not as deep from front to back as the old (really old) microwave we'd had since 1987. I have a couple of those nifty little Micro-Cookers from P*mpered Ch*f that I just love. I put it on the center of the turntable in the microwave and realized that the handle hit the front or back of the microwave. I promptly
DJ #2: I recently went to Mom's house, along with my cool new Super Scr*bble Deluxe to have some lexeme fun. The board folds in half (it's hard plastic) and when I opened it, her table cloth was caught in the middle. However, instead of saying that the board had pinched her table cloth, I said that I had pinched her clothes pin! Now where did that come from?!? Like I can't tell a clothes pin from a table cloth. Yep, wearing those Dork Jeans again!
As more of these stories creep back into my conscious brain, I'll share them (or not, when they're just downright TOO embarrassing). One good thing about having Dork Jeans is that I'm almost never at a loss for a good laugh, and it's usually at my own expense. Paid in full by my ancestral Dork Genes.