I’m officially a football widow…

Ah, September. The air is cooler, the leaves are starting to turn colors and school is back in session. And then it happens.

Football season.

Which means I’m officially a football widow.

My boys had a flag football clinic on Saturday morning. Practices start Wednesday.

The infamous Michigan/Notre Dame rivalry game was Saturday night.

Yesterday afternoon, all three of my boys watched as the Detroit Lions played.

(My husband has been a Lions fan longer than I’ve been alive. Yes, you read that right. Why did I think that my male offspring wouldn’t love football?)

Lord help me.

This shouldn’t come as a surprise to me. I had at least two warnings.

The first was when Tom and I were dating. He would spend HOURS on Saturday in front of the TV. I would watch it with him, trying to appreciate the game (and trying not fall asleep).

After the start of the THIRD football game that same day, I had reached my FQ (e.g., Football Quotient) and finally decided to go home.

He may have noticed.

The second was when we were on our honeymoon. There was a little sign in the gift shop at the resort we stayed at. It read:

“We temporarily interrupt this marriage to bring you football season.”

I chuckled and showed it to him; he read it and laughed.

And then I remembered something.

To a true fan (short for FANATIC – you knew that right?)

There is no off-season.

If only I had known…


<me thinking about the bright side>

Well, it could be worse…I could be married to this guy, right?



<wait a minute…that might be Tom in a few more years>


SO, I just gotta know…is anyone else out there a football widow? (Er, um, what other sport is going on now…baseball, perhaps?)

Published in: on September 12, 2011 at 5:30 am  Comments (3)  

Good news, bad news

The good news:

He’s cute.

the kid and the cat

The bad news:

He had a little accident.

the cat, not the kid

Bad kitty. Bad nameless kitty.

The good news?

I learned that 1/4 cup of apple cider vinegar added to the wash gets out the smell of cat pee.

If you need me, I’ll be in my happy place…

Published in: on September 1, 2011 at 5:30 am  Leave a Comment  
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Half off at Goodwill TODAY and a couple of past finds

Good morning!

I forgot about this until I looked at the calendar yesterday…today is the last Saturday of the month and that means most things are half off! Policies might vary from store to store, but generally in my area anything with a green sticker – all the clothes, housewares, furniture, books, toys – is 50 percent off. Anything with a white (new goods) or pink sticker (Treasure Chest items) are NOT included in the sale.

Not sure if I will make it there today (darn) as I will have both kiddos in tow. When you are thrifting, remember this equation:

Kids + Thrifting = Automatic Frustration

It’s not the kids’ fault; it’s just hard to dig for deals with two little people trailing behind you. Ask me how I know;)

OK, let me show you a couple of the things I’ve picked up recently. This falls under the category of ‘accidental collections’, but this time in a good way!

First up is this copper airplane music box.

I bought this for $6 or $7 earlier this year. It fits in perfectly with the “vintage transportation” theme of my boys’ room. Plus, it plays, “Dream the Impossible Dream.” Way cool.

Of course, in the back of my mind was the question, “Which kid does this belong to?” I thought it should by Joey’s, only because he loves planes, especially bi-planes.

Glad I didn’t have to go there when I spied this just a couple of weeks ago. Meet the plane’s long lost cousin, Tin Lizzie:

She is also made out of copper and plays an unidentifiable song. She was marked $10, but had been there WAY longer than 21 days, meaning she was $5. Sold. This one will go to Jack, since he really loves cars – especially race cars.

God help me.

So, have you found any great deals lately? thrifted or otherwise? Leave a comment and let me know!

Published in: on August 27, 2011 at 8:06 am  Comments (2)  
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I’ve been a busy girl…

My husband took our boys on a short camping trip last weekend, giving me some much-needed time to myself. Like two days and two nights.

Yeah, I married a good man.

I used part of my time to plan out the first four weeks of our second year of homeschooling. I did that, plus I worked in our school room, just purging, sorting and organizing. The biggest challenge was finally tackling all of the paper piles that were beyond out of control. My plan is to turn the closet that once upon a time was my old office into some serious toy storage. It’s not finished yet, but is well on its way. Of course, I’ll share pictures once it’s ready.

The rest of the time was split between cleaning out our refrigerator, painting an old TV cabinet for my new office a BRIGHT color (more on that later), shampooing carpet, thrifting a bit, hanging out with a girlfriend and then stocking up on groceries to welcome the whole crew home. Go me!

Doing all of that, however, meant I was a bad blogger. Please forgive me:(

<Want to hear something funny?…You may remember our last camping trip. You know,  the one that at best could only be described as miserable? Well, this time around, Tom purposely picked a certain campground because it has a strict 24 hour quiet hour rule. Little did he know that not a half mile down the road was the site of a yearly bluegrass festival. On the same weekend. With the stage FACING the campground. Oh no? Oh yes. Needless to say, my man was NOT a happy camper. It probably didn’t help matters when I tried to get him to look on the bright side…at least it wasn’t Kid Rock, right? He’ll think that was funny later. But, talk about irony!>

Now the boys are back in town and I have 14 – yes 14 – loads of laundry done to prove it.

I really enjoyed my time, though I missed them and am glad they are home.

Empty refrigerator, full washing machine and all!

Published in: on August 23, 2011 at 5:30 am  Leave a Comment  

Thoughts on the book, “Just Jane” and Pictures of the City of Bath

Hi everyone!

Remember when I stumbled upon fabulous bargains at a bookstore closing sale?

One of the books I picked up was this novel:

It’s historical fiction based on the life of the lovely and delightful Jane Austen. The book made you feel like you were in one of her movies – except that you were learning about Jane herself. If you love her other works (or the movies based on them), I think you’ll really enjoy this novel.

Stick with me for a moment…

At one point, Jane’s family moved to Bath, believing that it would be better for her father’s ailing health. They city was known for its healing waters that were said to cure a number of ills.

All this to say, I found a couple of posts from a talented photographer that contain pictures of Bath. Here is part 1 and part 2. Though I may never be able to travel to Europe, it was absolutely fascinating to see some of the city’s beautiful architecture and imagine what life would’ve been like during her lifetime.


Published in: on August 13, 2011 at 5:30 am  Leave a Comment  
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Tent Sale at Second Impressions

I just received an email that today and tomorrow my second favorite Thrift Store, Second Impressions, is having a tent sale. All furniture in the tent is up to 75 percent off and clothes and shoes are $1 each.

I went to their end of season sale last year and found a number of clothing items for 99 cents each. If you are in the area, it might be worth it to stop by. Also, the store is run by some very dedicated volunteers and all the proceeds benefit the Kalamazoo Christian Schools.

Love the win-win. Happy shopping!

Published in: on August 11, 2011 at 5:30 am  Comments (2)  
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A Beauty Fave BOGO (Ends Saturday)

Hands down, this is one of my all-time favorite beauty products.

I love it because I can use this one product as both a concealer and a foundation. The coverage is excellent and it’s so light that it doesn’t even feel like I’m wearing any makeup at all. It even has an SPF of 15, which is a nice bonus for this fair-skinned gal.

The regular price for one is $26, but it is BOGO through Saturday at Ulta.

$13 each? That is a bit more palatable.

Plus, this new packaging includes a sample of their primer.

I tried it before and though I liked it, I’m in the camp that doesn’t think foundation primer is completely necessary – though I reserve the right to completely change my mind in a few more years!

PS, The Pur Mineral people do not even know I exist. I’m just passing along a great sale I found on a product I personally love:)

Published in: on August 5, 2011 at 5:30 am  Leave a Comment  

Now it’s easier to find a new favorite recipe

Good morning, everyone!

I just created a separate page called Recipe Raves. It’s sorted by category so (hopefully) it will be easier for you to find a new favorite. Right now it’s under About Me until I can come up with a better place for it:)

In doing so, I noticed I’m a little spare in the Sweets category, which is surprising since I happen to have a wicked sweet tooth. Not to worry as I’ll be posting a new treat very soon!

Take a peek and let me know what you think.

Published in: on August 3, 2011 at 5:30 am  Leave a Comment  

My Blonde Moment

I was running some errands by myself last Saturday morning and realized I was low on gas.

So I pull in front of the pump, swipe my card and proceed to fill my vehicle.

At that moment, I happened to look up and see the big yellow and green sign that says, “Diesel”.

And I panicked inside.

I quickly stopped the pump and wondered what to do.

I couldn’t believe that I was so scatter-brained that I accidentally filled our UNLEADED GAS ONLY vehicle with diesel fuel.

I had visions of me trying to syphon out the diesel fuel so our car wouldn’t be completely ruined.

There was a middle-aged woman in a mini van on the opposite side of the pump who was filling up her vehicle.  I looked at her with wide-eyes and said to her, “Do you know that this is a diesel pump?”

She looked at me, then looked at the diesel pump and said, “The left side is diesel. The right side is unleaded. The diesel pump is bigger so it wouldn’t fit in your tank.”

I glanced again at the pump and saw that she was right.

My first thought was, “Phew! I didn’t just ruin our car by filling it up with diesel fuel.”

My next thought was, “This woman thinks I’m an idiot.”

I sheepishly mumbled something about the diesel fuel engineers being really smart and then went on my merry way.

So that was my blonde moment. And I’m not even remotely blonde.

Maybe I need to slow down a little bit…and take the time to laugh at myself!

Published in: on July 19, 2011 at 5:30 am  Comments (4)  

Mama Said There’d Be Days Like This

Yesterday was bad.

The kind of bad day in which Alexander (as in Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day) could relate. 

No, it didn’t involve waking up with gum in my hair or being forced to eat lima beans for dinner, but it was stinky just the same.

Allow me to vent for just a moment.

I was late getting to an outing with a homeschool group I belong to.

(Incidentally, this was the same outing in which I somehow managed to be exactly one week early for. But alas, that is another story…).

I rushed around this morning, threw the boys in the car and headed out to meet the group at our city’s nature trail. Like a responsible person, I wrote down the directions so I knew where to go and when I got to the road I was supposed to turn on, it was closed.

As in completely. No thru traffic, not even open to local businesses. Big construction vehicles in motion – you get the picture.

Found an alternate route and ended up getting there, but late.

Told my story to the other moms who chuckled and sympathized and then I temporarily lost my mind.

As in, I wrote down on my nametag (we’re a new group and just getting to know each other) that my boys were 9.

Ummm, they are, in fact, not 9, but 8.

I laughed it off, but seriously – where IS my mind these days?

Walked the nature trail and was only splashed with swamp water three times.

After that, I went to Target for an ink cartridge for our printer. Was pricier than other places, but they had it in stock, so into the cart it went.

Back at home, I decided to catch up on a little work I’d put off, but I was having trouble logging in.

Called my company’s help desk and was told, “there’s nothing more we can do for you. You’ll have to take your computer somewhere else to get it fixed.”

“What? Seriously?”

Let me get this straight. I can do everything else on my computer, EXCEPT log into THEIR network, but somehow I’m told that I HAVE TO PAY for SOMEONE ELSE to ‘fix’ my computer, when clearly, it’s an issue with THEIR system.

That doesn’t sound too helpful to me.

So that’s it? My 10+ year career with a company that I love ends with a helpdesk tech telling me, “sorry, we can’t help you.”

After hanging up the phone, I did the most professional and mature thing I could think of.

I cried. BIG tears.

Look at the clock. Time for dinner. Don’t feel like cooking.

<Insert $5 pizza here>

Hubby home. He takes over taking care of the kids and I take my aggression out decide to trim an overgrown shrub.

Edward Scissor-hands style.

Sweaty, dirty and smelly, I crawl into the tub to take a hot bath…

…and promptly remember that our hot water heater is not working.

And my Sears-repairman father hasn’t returned my call.

Day…please, please end.

It did (eventually). And I survived.

Today is a new day.

I promise that I will try hard to be back to my normal cheerful, easy-going, vintage self tomorrow.

My mom said that some days are like that too, Alexander.

Even in Australia.

Published in: on July 8, 2011 at 5:45 am  Leave a Comment