Friday, October 8, 2010

Five for Friday 10.8.10

1. What do you listen to while driving? 

When the kids are in the car, we usually listen to Barenaked Ladies, Snacktime CD.  If we are on the way to school, it's usually the whining and fighting over the one and only toy in the back seat.

If I'm alone, I'll listen to music or traffic reports.  The last two days I've been listening to an audio book.  I've been trying to listen to The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.  This is the first time I've tried to listen to a book like that as an audio book.  I'm not sure I like it.  I think I would much rather hold the book in my hands and read it.  Problem is, if I wait until I have time to do that it will never happen.

2. What is your least favorite thing about Fall?

I really like fall.  I love the crisp cool weather.  I love the changing leaves.  There isn't much I don't like.  I can say I don't like that with fall and the return of school our schedules are so busy.  I feel like we are running non stop and every moment of our life is planned out.  I may have to schedule in some down time. 

3. What does your dream house look like, inside and out?

I have two houses I would really love to have.  One would be a perfect little mcmansion.  Preferably in a cul de sac of a gorgeous little private community with a pool and a golf course. 

My second choice, though much more work, would be an old victorian home with a huge wrap around porch.  I live in a pretty old home right now and would not want to do all the work to an old home.  They are so pretty though!

4. Would you ever own a minivan?

We just had this debate as we needed to replace one of our cars.  In the end we went with an SUV.  I like the space and the features a minivan offers, I just don't feel quite right saying, "I drive a minivan."  We only have two kids and now that they don't need all the baby gear and stuff lugged around with them all the time, we don't really need all that extra space.  I think if we had another kid, we would have to go for a minivan. I just can't see fitting 3 kids and carseats/booster seats in what we have now.

5. Do you wash new clothes before wearing them?

When the kids were babies I definitely did.  Underwear is a definite yes.  Anything else is a no.  I probably bought them because I was behind on wash as it is, so would I wash the stuff I just bought?  Negative.

You can also find me hopping with these blogs today:


Friendly Friday Button

Smart and Trendy Moms

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Too Many Cooks

When I first picked up my copy of Too Many Cooks: Kitchen Adventures with 1 Mom, 4 Kids, and 102 Recipes by Emily Franklin I wasn’t sure if I would enjoy it or if I could even relate to the story or the author.   According to the back cover of the book it is “A memoir of testing, tasting and discovery in the kitchen.” 

Well anyone that knows me knows I have nothing to do with kitchens!  I don’t enjoy cooking, mostly since I don’t know where to start.  My few attempts to make new meals for my family have flopped, and that’s putting it kindly!  I am also quite picky and rarely try new foods.

Once I started reading this book I was hooked.  I loved Emily Franklin’s tales of cooking and getting her four children to try new foods.  If anything, her story took me back to childhood and my own mother, who loves to cook, trying to get the four of us to try the things she made.  My poor mother.  I can now sympathize with what she must have gone through trying to get us to eat new foods and try our vegetables.

I was intrigued by Franklin’s method of introducing new foods to her kids.  She pairs a new food with a familiar food, taste, flavor or texture.  That seems so simple and makes so much sense, yet I never thought to do that with my own children.  I think it is a much better idea than my parents had when they told us we were having our favorite dish, chicken parmagiana.  After a bite or two, we thought something was wrong with our chicken.  Problem was, it was EGGPLANT parmagiana!   I wouldn’t advocate lying to your kids to get them to try something.  I still won’t touch eggplant parmagiana.

I also enjoyed her stories outside of the kitchen.  One point she relays a story about a vacation they took to visit some friends for a summer vacation.  The house was plagued with bats and they had to do bat checks each night.  This cracked me up!  For a while I made my husband do bat checks each night.  The reason why sounds made up, but I assure you it’s true.

The first year we moved into our house was exciting.  We decorated for everything.  Every holiday was exciting.  Come Halloween, we did it up with lights, pumpkins, witches.  You name it we had it.  We bought TONS of candy in preparation for all the little Trick-or-Treaters in the neighborhood.  The kids finally stopped coming by around 9 o’clock.  We shut out the lights and settled into the family room to watch TV and talk about all the cute kids we saw. 

Right about then, something buzzed over our heads.  I screamed and yelled, “WHAT WAS THAT??”  Hubs tells me it was probably a bird that got in and started to go in the living room after it.  Of course it comes back and I start screaming again.  IT’S A BAT!!  ON HALLOWEEN.  This had to be some sort of sick practical joke, right? 

Wrong.  It was a real bat.  It was in our house.  I was freaking out.

Once the bat did another loop and flew back into the front of the house, I ran out the back door and locked myself in the car in the driveway.  I proceeded to call Hubs on his cell phone every 30 seconds to see if he caught it yet.  I did not move from that spot until my husband emerged victorious from the house.  I’m sure the neighbors must have thought we were nuts that night. 

Ahhh, memories.

**Disclaimer: I received this book as a member of The Bloggers' Book Club from the author, Emily Franklin.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Five Question Friday 9.17.10

Someday I will get back to regular posting, but for now here's a Five Question Friday.

1. What is the first nightmare you remember?  I remember being about 8 years old. I think I had heart burn from the keilbasa we had for dinner.  I remember my stomach hurting really bad and I went and laid in my mom's bed.  I had a really freaky dream about a cemetary and hiding behind the tombstones.

2. Even if you're not a sports fan, what's your favorite sport to play/watch?  I love Baseball.  More so in person, but I will watch it on TV too.

3. If you could pull off one piece of trendy fashion, what would you want it to be (jeggings, hats, thigh high boots, etc.)?  Thigh high boots in my dreams!  Other than that I would love to wear scarves, but I always feel like a dork when I put one on.

4. Did you make good grades in school?  I did.  I was on honor roll all through elementary.  I attended an academic high school where I promptly slacked off and started goofing around.  Let's just say I didn't make honor roll after that.

5. What magazines do you subscribe to?  Rangefinder, Ladies Home Journal, OK, Readers Digest, Southern Living and Maxim.  The only ones I actually subscribed to are Rangefinder and OK.  Not sure how I started getting the other ones.


Friendly Friday Button

Smart and Trendy Moms

Friday, September 10, 2010

Five Question Friday

1. Do you feel guilty spending money on yourself?

Definitely.  I don't know why though.  I feel bad to spend $30 on a mani-pedi, but the hubs will easily drop a $100 (or more) on stuff he wants.  Good thing I'm not spending it so its there for him to use.  ;-)

2. How well do you know your neighbors?

Some better than others.  We have a few with kids about the same ages as our girls.  We spend time with them and the kids play nice together.  We get along and chat with almost all of them.  Hubs usually runs the snowblower over their sidewalks too, so that helps. 

3. What age are you looking forward to being?

Hmm... that's a good question.  I'm pretty happy where I'm at right now.  I'm certainly NOT looking forward to the having two teeneage girls in the house.  Can I skip past 10-15 years from now?? 

I'm looking forward to sitting on the porch on a porch swing with the hubs, holding his wrinkly old hand. 

4. Do you get excited when the mail comes? Why?

Yes!  I do.  I have no idea why, since it's usually just bills.  And American Girl catalogs.  And Noodle wants ALL of them.  Ironically she never plays with dolls, it's LaLa that loves babies.

5. What is your earliest childhood memory?

This is a strange question for me.  I'm not sure.  I think I have memories, but then I wonder if they are really memories or just that I heard the stories so many times, that I think they are my memories.  I know I went to California when I was about 3 or 4 with my grandparents.  In my mind I can see the cable cars, I can see Disney Land, I can see Fisherman's Wharf.  Then I realize there are photos of each of the places that I "remember" and a story to go with them.  Do I remember the actual events?  Or do I just remember the hours spent as a little girl in my grandmother's lap as we rocked in the rocking chair and looked at pictures as she told me the stories? 

I remember fishing with my grandfather.  I remember visiting downtown Philly for the historic tour with my parents and my sister.  Again, do I really remember?  Or am I remembering pictures and stories?

I remember standing next to a telephone pole when I was about 7 or 8 years old, with my sister behind me.  I remember that she was crying and kids were teasing her because she had a speech problem and they couldn't understand her.  I remember yelling at those kids and threatening to bash their heads into the pole we were standing next to if they ever made my sister cry again.  They were older kids.  Bigger kids.  I didn't care.  I remember taking my sister by the hand and going into our house.  There is no pictures, no stories.  It was just me and her.  I wonder if she remembers this too. 

I hope not. 

Find me hopping here today:

New Friend Fridays


Friendly Friday Button

Smart and Trendy Moms

Monday, August 23, 2010

Local Event: Back to School Craft Event This Thursday

Musings of a Housewife and Bloomingdales are hosting a Back to School Craft Event for moms and kids. There will be mini-makeovers, crafts for the kids and more.

Thursday, August 26th, from 10 to noon

{Click to see invitation bigger}

More info here:

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Getting to Know You

Getting to know YOU

The Q's.

1. If you could host a Reality TV show, which one would it be?  Wipeout.  It makes us laugh until we pee our pants.  Not really.  Close though.

2. Do you put your seatbelt on before or after you start the car? After, sometimes even at the stop sign at the end of the street.  Or when one of the kids yells that I don't have it on.  The car does not move unless they are buckled though.

3. Shave or hair removal cream? Shave

4. What's your favorite feature in a house? Space and character.

5. What is your favorite "Fall" scent? Pumpkin spice.  There is also a crisp warm smell in the air when the leaves here in the northeast begin to change.  Yeah, that.

6. What tv show are you looking forward to seeing the most this Fall?? Sons of Anarchy

7. Personal Shopper or Personal Chef? Personal Chef.  Unless the Personal Shopper comes with a neverending money bag.  

8. What is the first word that comes to mind when you think of "Fall"?  It was actually Autumn, but since that is the same word I'll go with leaves.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Review: ABC City Guides for Kids

We received a few of the ABC City Guides for Kids to check out.  As soon as they came in the mail, the kids were super excited to see them.  These cute guides for children go through the alphabet with a photograph (sometimes more than one) for each letter representing places in the city for kids to see.

The first one they wanted to look at was to Orlando City Guide.  We go there just about every other year, so they were excited to see some of the places they recognized.  We also picked out a few new places we didn't know about to go visit the next time we head to Orlando.

We also found many places we would like to visit (and again didn't know were there) in Lancaster County, PA.  We are thinking about planning a trip to Dutch Wonderland, and maybe taking a ride on the Strasburg Railroad.

The girls absolutely love looking at these books.  They will sit and look at the pictures often prompting conversations about things we did while on vacation or what they would like to do on another vacation.  The books are the perfect size for little hands.  They would also fit nicely in a purse or day bag to take along with you.  They are great for toddlers, preschoolers and young children.  We love them and will be picking up the Philadelphia one soon!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Good Caramels

The kids are at an age where they just say some pretty funny things.  They give me quite a chuckle.  I love that they are trying to absorb everything and they are expanding their vocabularies.  Half the time I'm not even sure where they come up with these things.

The other night the girls were playing in one of  their bedrooms while I was folding laundry in mine.  Noodle comes into my room and says, "Hey Mommy, what do you call those candies?  You know the brown ones?"  I paused to think about it and she goes, "Oh yeah! Caramels"  (I know people pronounce that differently so I will say she said it CAR - MULS).  And then we had the following conversation:

Me:  Okay, what about them?

Noodle: I just gave some to LaLa.

Me: We don't have any candy.  What are you talking about?

Noodle: No Mommy, not candy.  You know, like when you do something nice for someone?  Then something good happens to you.  It's called caramels.  I was just sharing really nicely with LaLa.  I gave her good caramels."

I tried my hardest not to laugh as I said, "Well I hope you get lots of good caramels then.  Maybe some good karma too."

Thursday, August 5, 2010

If I Could Do It Over Again...

Kat over on Mama's Losin' It is doing a writer's workshop.  One of the prompts was "If you could do it over again..."   This one got me thinking.  Of course, that's what it was meant to do.  I know it's cliche, but for the most part I wouldn't do it over again.  I would leave everything the way that it was since everything I've done so far has made me the person I am today.  That's what I'm supposed to say, right?

There are some things I might possibly have done a little differently.

I would have been nicer to my sister when we were kids.

I would have gone to class in high school instead of skipping.

I would have taken that high school photography class a little more seriously.

I would have studied more, and been a better student.  Not to say I was a bad student, I just could have been a much better student.  I could have been honor roll material.  At the time I didn't want to apply myself, I was lazy.

I would have gone on a date with that dorky boy in college that I was too embarrassed to talk to in public.  Sometimes dorky boys end up as rich men. 

I would have moved to NYC for a few years after college.  My roommate and I talked about it constantly, but never made it a reality.

I might even have done a semester abroad.  I hear so many stories from people that did and what a great experience they had.

I would have taken that college photography class a little more seriously.

I would have majored in photography/design.

I would have gone to visit my great grandmom that Friday night instead of putting it off until another day.  There wasn't another day for her.

I would have had a big red bouquet on my wedding day, instead of the bouquet of white roses that I thought I wanted.

I would have done everything I could have to put us in a position financially to allow me to stay home with my children.  At the same time, I would still want to send my kids to the school they are in now.  They are learning far more than I could ever have taught them myself.

I might have given one of said kids a different name.  Maybe even the (wrong) name I called her by no less then 5 times in her first 3 months of life.

All of those aside, there are things I wouldn't change for the world.  I love my life and all the things that have made me the person I am today.  I love my husband, my children, my family and the people in my life and if changing something way back when, would mean life didn't lead me to them then I wouldn't change a thing.

Mama's Losin' It

Thursday, July 29, 2010

A Few New Faves

I've been participating in the SITS and Problogger Summer Challenge - 31 Days to Build a Better Blog (31DBBB) and it has lead to me finding a bunch of new blogs to read.  The support, the writing and the blogs in this challenge are phenomenal.  I want to share some of the new blogs I found this week, that I have added to my reader.  I'm not sure that all of them are participating in the challenge.  I just know that I found them, I like them, so I'm passing them on to you (in no particular order)

  • A Beautiful Mess is one of my new favorite photograpy/life blogs.  Of course, I love Alicia's beautiful photographs, but it's not all about the photographs.  She's witty, informative and fun!  She also hosts a fun Wordless Wednesday link up.

  • Life Without Pink is on my list for a few reasons.  I can't imagine living in a world so full of testosterone.  I imagine it must be tough for my husband to live life without blue.  I guess I am biased, but I like that she's local to me.  I love finding local bloggers and websites.

  • One Day I Will is written by Megan.  She's young, she's fun, she's got a cute little blog.  Need I say more?

  • How to Homemaker has some great tips, information, lists, basically anything to do with home and family.  I've already added some things to my To Do List because of posts on her site.

Those are just a few of the many new sites I've added to my reader this week.  Hope you find the time to stop by and visit them too.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Mr. Sandman, Send Me a Dream

My daughter really needs one.  LaLa is 3 years old.  Someone please tell me why I can't get the kid to bed before 10pm.  Regardless of what time we start getting ready for bed, she doesn't fall asleep a second before 10 pm.  Often it's much later than that.  Her 5 year old sister, Noodle, goes to sleep without much problem most times before 9pm.

Last night LaLa fell asleep at 11:45PM.  This was after spending all day at school, then heading to the swim club after I finished work.  Silly me, I even put her PJs on for the ride home thinking maybe she would be so tuckered out she would fall asleep in the car.  Not a chance.

She laid in bed, she laid on the floor.  She went in her room, she came in my room.  She got a pillow to lay on the floor.  She laid on the floor singing to herself for 30 minutes.  I was totally okay with that, BTW, if it meant she was going to go to sleep, I didn't care where she did it.  She went back in the bed, back on the floor, crawled around the floor all while I tried to ignore her hoping she would tire herself out.  She finally decided to lay down and fall asleep just before midnight.

I'm tired just thinking about all that.  What time do your kids go to sleep? How do you get them into bed easily without a fuss?

Monday, July 26, 2010

Meet & Greet Monday

Come meet some new bloggers!

Fancy Meeting You

Where Did The Weekend Go?

Why do the weekends fly by so quickly? We had a nice weekend, it just went too quickly.

On Friday night we took the kids to see Despicable Me.  It was a cute movie.  The kid loved the minions.  I think my favorite parts were the song in the beginning and the minion floating in space at the end.  I also had to chuckle at the Bank of Evil, formerly known as Lehman Brothers.  Noodle's favorite part was when the little girl puts a mud pie on the desk of the lady that runs the home.  I immediately thought that was something Noodle would do when I saw it.

Saturday we spent the day test driving used cars.  I couldn't believe how well behaved the kids were considering how many times we were in and out of cars, and moving booster seats and the like.  They did so well.  Of course, their favorite car was the one with the DVD player.  We hurried home and went to a birthday party after that.  It was a long but fun day.

We just hung around the house on Sunday.  We did some food shopping and light cleaning.  Just as we were getting home it started to get really dark and stormy.  The winds really picked up and there was a bunch of lightening.  I thought for sure we would be making dinner on the George Forman grill in the kitchen.  The rains cleared just in time for us to throw dinner on the grill. 

All in all, it was a pretty good weekend.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

It All Falls Down

Ever have one of those days where nothing seems to go right?  Yeah?  Well, I'm having one of those months.  It seems like everything around us is falling apart.  It started with the check engine light coming on in the car, then the heater broke, then the check engine light came on again, and finally tonight the garage door stuck open. These were only the major things.  We won't even mention all the little day to day stuff.

Luckily, my husband is a pretty handy guy and fixed most of these things.  We're still left with a broken heater, that will have to be replaced before winter and will suck up all money and available credit.  Sigh. 

I decided, in an effort to start saving more for that, we should use coupons and plan better.  I've been browsing some Frugal blogs to learn more about couponing.  I am overwhelmed by the amount of information.  When that happens, I tend to give up.

We are pretty well stocked and should only need fresh fruits/veggies and milk in the near future.  So I'll keep reading and trying to figure out how to go about this.  I know how to actually use a coupon, it's mostly the planning, matching and organizing that have me stumped.

Any advice for a complete beginner on couponing?

Friday, July 23, 2010

I'm Hopping

I decided to participate in a few blog hops today.  If you are looking for some new reading material, please check out the following hops:

New Friend Fridays




Smart and Trendy Moms

My Wee View

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Our New Favorite Read: Mommy's High Heel Shoes

It's not often that a book catches the interest of both of my girls at the same time, unless of course they are fighting over who had it first. The other day, I received a really cute book, that they both  absoultely loved!  It's called Mommy's High Heel Shoes by Kristie Finnan.  As soon as I pulled it out of the packaging, my girls were immediately drawn to it.

The illustrations are so cute. We spent a good hour reading the book and finding the ladybugs, cupcakes and hearts that are hidden on each page. We were also excited to find a local farm featured in the book. Noodle, my older daughter, has been there a few times in the fall for pumpkin picking and was happy to tell her little sister she had been there before.

I love how this story points out all of the different shoes a mom wears, or the different jobs she has.  As a working mom, I know what it's like to wear all of those different shoes.  It's so fun to see the girls trying to walk around in my shoes and pretend to be Mommy.  We related so well to this book, it brought up lots of discussion about things we do that the family in the book also did.  It was nice to see the parts of the book that the girls got excited about and how those parts reminded them of things we did in our daily life.

Noodle, has been carrying the book around since it got here and flipping through it.  I love that she is starting to read and is taking an interest in doing it herself.  Beans would like to carry it around too, but a few too many books have met their demise in her unsupervised hands.  So instead, Beans and I sit and look for ladybugs, cupcakes and hearts together. 

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Today I am Thankful

I thought with all the things Murphy has brought us lately (like being sick as a dog, broken heater, transmission fail, etc) I would take a moment to count my blessing. I'm sure they outweigh the bad things going on right. That being said, I'm thankful for:

  • My Husband: He does a wonderful job taking care of his family. He is super handy and can tackle most projects on his own. A few hours of reading and he is ready to go. That alone has saved us a bunch of money. Not to mention the fact that after 7 years of marriage, I still get butterflies when I see his name on the caller ID of my phone or when I see him after some time spent apart.
  • My Daughters: They are my world. They are so smart and funny. At times they do push my buttons, but they are lucky they are cute. I can't imagine my life without them. They make me smile each and every day.
  • Our Health: I'm thankful we are all healthy. Yes we had a nasty virus, but there are so many people out there suffering from so much worse, that I can't even complain about that.
  • Family/Friends: We have a large network of family and friends. Each one of them has a special place in our hearts!
  • We are Employed/Have a Roof Over Our Heads: I know there are so many in this economy that aren't in that position. We have to be thankful for these things as well.
  • My Camera: Don't laugh. It's true. Even though I haven't used it as much as I would like lately, it's my creative outlet and it helps keep me sane. I sometimes have dreams that it breaks/doesn't work. I wake up from those dreams feeling devastated. If something did happen to my camera (my DSLR) I know I wouldn't be able to replace it at this stage of the game.
  • High Speed Internet: Or internet at all. I think I may have a slight addiction. Is there a program for Internet Addiction? I don't know what I would do without it.