Wednesday, October 31, 2007

An Award Here, an Award There, Here an Award, There an Award, Everywhere an Award, Award. Old MacDonald had a farm......

Oh my goodness. You all are overwhelming me! I have received several more awards in the last few days! So, here we go.

First I received this "Blogging that Hits the Mark" award from Terri at My4Kids. I don't really see any information about this award- but judging by the name I'm guessing that Terri thinks my blogging hits the mark. Awwww, thanks Terri!

Next I received this "One Sweet Treat to Read" award from Grams at Talk to Grams and apparently she thinks I am one sweet treat to read. Awwww, thanks Grams!
Next I received this "You're a Treat" award from Regina at Regina's Family Seasons. And you know what? Regina thinks I'm a treat. Awwww, thanks Regina.Then I received this "Friendly Site Award" from Kelly at Diary of a Caregiver. So, I'm guessing that she thinks my site is friendly. Awww, thanks Kelly!Finally I received this "Sisters by Blood" award from Sharon at Sit With Me Awhile. Although it isn't really an award. In Sharon's words, "So-- this is not really an award. You became a member of this sister club when you gave your heart to Christ. And so, if you are a Christian------YOU ARE MY SISTER! I am going to pass this on to women I have gotten to know. Women that by the heart they display through their blogs--show the blood they have been washed in. Blood, that at the cross--sealed our sisterhood for eternity.We will walk the streets of GOLD arm in arm! Post this (if you would like) with pride. Pride in the ONE who gave His blood, so that we would forever be bound together as............ SISTERS!" Wow- Sharon- thank you!
So, there you have it. Thank you so much ladies for giving me these awards! Right now I am too overwhelmed to pass them on. So I will have to do that at a later time. Or maybe not.

On a side note- you all probably already know this- but when I was doing this post I accidentally figured out that you can upload more than one picture at a time. Excited does not even begin to explain how that made me feel.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Way Back When

I was tagged by Andrea to do this fun little meme about what I was doing 10, 20 and 30 years ago.

10 years ago: (1997) I was 20 years old and was spending my first semester away at college, after having attended my local community college. I didn't go too far from home though- I was only about 45 minutes away. I lived in an apartment with three other girls. I never really got close to any of them, as they were there mainly to party and I wasn't. I went to my elementary education and child psychology classes during the morning, worked part time at a day care center in the afternoon, and spent my evenings with Rich (his job had transferred him to a city near the college I went to, so we were still able to see each other most days).

20 years ago: (1987) I had just turned 10 years old and was in 5th grade. For some reason the only thing I can remember about 5th grade is this mean teacher who used to make me stay in from playground to practice my handwriting. I still have messy handwriting- so clrealy that method did not work.

30 years ago: (1977) I was a little over a week old. I can't tell you for sure- but I'm guessing I was doing some crying, some sleeping, and some eating. And I'm quite sure I was getting lots of love, hugs, and attention.

You're welcome to play along if you want to- just leave me a comment to let me know so that I can check out your post.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

To Buy Or Not To Buy

With the many recent large toy recalls due to the use of lead paint I am wondering what you are planning to do this year for Christmas. Since Hailey is in the stage where she puts everything into her mouth I am very concerned about purchasing any China made toys.

The CPSC says that the best way to keep our kids safe is by checking for product recalls and safety news on their website. But I don't want to find out about a problem with a toy after Hailey has already been playing with it. I want to know that the toys on the shelves have already been tested and are safe.

For Hailey's birthday we looked for toys that were not made in China. It was IMPOSSIBLE to find anything. I searched the shelves and I only found one thing and it had been made in Mexico. I certainly didn't see anything made in the US.

So, I'm curious to know what you plan to do this year for Christmas for your children or grandchildren or nieces and nephews. Will you buy toys made in China? Let me know your opinions in the comments section and by voting on my poll (on the right-hand sidebar near the top).

If you have found places to buy US made toys, please let me know. If you haven't already- sign up to get email notification about the latest recalls from the CPSE by clicking here. You'll receive notices well before you hear about it on the news.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Do You Work?

The other day someone asked me if I work. My response? "Oh yes, I work. I just don't get paid for what I do."

Erma Bombeck said, “The easiest part of being a mother is giving birth. The hardest part is showing up on the job every day."

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Blog Friend Forever Award

I received this Blog Friend Forever award from Grams last week. This award is "presented to awesome blog owners who keep their readers excited about their posts. Their blog posts are interesting (not spammy) and worth reading and keep their subscribers looking forward to each and every posts." Although the description doesn't say this- I'm also assuming because of the name, that you pass this award on to people you consider to be your friend forever. Getting this award from Grams means a lot to me. Grams is one of the sweetest and kindest ladies I know. She has become very special to me and I really treasure our friendship. If you don't already read her blog you should stop by and check it out here. Thank you Grams!

Updated to add: I also just received this award from Sharon. I always look forward to visiting Sharon's blog. She usually has some great spiritual advice and she is a wonderful lady! I am so glad I have "met" her and am able to call her my friend. Visit her blog here. Thank you Sharon!

I am going to pass this award on to Regina at Regina's Family Seasons. She's a new blogger and has a wonderful blog. If you don't read her blog yet, stop by today- I'm sure you'll enjoy her posts. She's an amazing mom to 5 kids and grandmother to a beautiful baby girl. She's full of wisdom and advice and is someone I most definitely consider to be a friend forever!

In other news- you all keep asking me how my birthday was. I had a wonderful day. Thank you all for the many happy birthday wishes you left on my blog! My parents were here from out of town to visit. We went out to dinner, had cake, and I received some wonderful presents. Later we enjoyed sitting and talking by a fire in my back yard. I had a great day. I'm not sure exactly why I feel so down about turning 30- I know it's not as old as I thought it was when I was a teenager. But, for some reason the idea of being 30 is down right depressing. But, my birthday celebration was just great!

Monday, October 22, 2007

Toddler Rules

If it's on, I must turn it off.
If it's off, I must turn it on.
If it's folded, I must unfold it.
If it's high, it must be reached.
If it's shelved, it must be unshelved.
If it's pointed, it must be fun to play with at top speed.
If it has leaves, they must be picked.
If it's plugged, it must be unplugged.
If it's not trash, it must be thrown away.
If it's in the trash, it must be removed, inspected, and thrown on the floor.
If it's closed, it must be opened.
If it doesn't open, it must be screamed at.
If it has drawers, they must be rifled.
If it's a pencil, it must write on the refrigerator, computer monitor, or table.
If it's full, it will be more interesting emptied.
If it's empty, it will be more interesting full.
If it's a pile of dirt, it must be laid upon.
If it's a stroller, it must under no circumstances be ridden in without protest and must be pushed by me instead.
If it has a flat surface, it must be banged upon.
If Mommy's hands are full, I must be carried.
If Mommy is in a hurry and wants to carry me, I must walk alone.
If it's paper, it must be torn.
If it has buttons, they must be pressed.
If the volume is low, it must go high.
If it's your toothbrush, it must be inserted into my mouth.
If it's my toothbrush, it must be inserted into your mouth.
If it has a faucet, it must be turned on at full force.
If it's a phone, I must talk into it, unless there is someone on the other end.
If it's a bug, it must be swallowed.
If it's not food, it must be tasted.
If it's food, it must not be tasted.
If it has a tail, I must yank it.
If Mommy wants me to come, I must run away.
If Mommy wants me to go away, I must cling on for dear life.
If it's sticky, it must go in my hair.
If it's bath time, I must run around naked until I'm caught.

I do not know who wrote this but I thought it was just perfect in describing toddlers. If anyone knows who the author is- please let me know and I will update my post to give that person credit.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Winnie-the-Pooh and the Big 3-0

I saw this at over at Andrea's blog and thought it would be fun to see which 100 Acre personality I am.

And how appropriate that I am Winnie-the-Pooh, my favorite character! Not only am I loveable and kind (the quiz said so) but I do love honey too. And I could probably eat it by the pot full. Hmmmm, I wonder why I need to lose 25 23 pounds.

Anywho- play along and see who you are. Then leave me a comment to let me know.

And in other news- I'm going to be 30 on Saturday. Can you tell how excited I am? Because really- I am not excited.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Look Great in 2008 Weight Loss Challenge


Weight loss since my last weigh in- 1 pound
Weight loss since start of challenge- 2 pounds
Weight loss since Hailey was born- 32 pounds

I have not really made any major changes so far. I'm trying to watch what I eat and do less snacking. My goals for this week are:
1. Start walking 5 days each week.
2. Have a light snack around 3pm so I am not starving when I make dinner.
3. Drink more water.

Check out the other participants (or join yourself!) at Tales From The Scales.

23 pounds to go!

Wordless Wednesday #25

Pictures taken by my dad.
For more Wordless Wednesday click here or here.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Activity Menu Challenge

Andrea at Lifesong has challenged us to come up with some ideas of things to do this winter to combat the winter blues. I have decided to break my ideas into three parts.

  • Since I am a stay-at-home mom my first list of ideas is things that Hailey and I will do during the day to help keep me from going stir crazy.

1. One day each week we go to babies and mommies story time at the library. It lasts about a half an hour and we get to hear stories, sing songs, play games, and I get to talk to other moms. In January Hailey will graduate to the toddler class, which still takes place once a week. After the class we spend time picking out new books and CD's to take home, we play with the puppets, do puzzles, and watch the fish in the aquarium. If the weather continues to be warm enough we will spend time playing on the playground too.
2. Another day we go to story time at Barnes and Noble. We hear stories, play games and sing songs. Afterwards we walk spend time looking around at Barnes and Noble and trying not to buy too many things.
3. Every other week we attend a MOPS group. Hailey gets to play with some kids her age while I get to have some adult conversation with the other moms.
4. The other days of the week we stay home. But, to keep things from getting boring I plan out activities for us to do. Much like when I was teaching I pick a theme for each week and I plan activities around that theme. When we go to the library we get books that relate the theme. I have found TONS of ideas for things to do with toddlers and preschoolers on this amazing site called Pamm's House. She is amazingly creative and full of ideas- all of which she shares for free.

Next are my ideas of things we can do together as a family either in the evenings or on the weekends:

1. Have a family game night.
2. Take walks together and enjoy the fall leaves and later enjoy all the Christmas decorations.
3. If it's too cold to be outside we enjoy going to the mall just to watch people. People can be so interesting to watch!
4. We have some great children's museums where we live- we need to start visiting those.
5. We have a membership to our local zoo, which is open all year, so when it is not too cold out we can go see the animals.
6. Play in the snow.
7. Go to things like Build-A-Bear and Color Me Mine.

Now for some ideas of things for me to do:

1. Get back into my scrap booking. I keep buying more stuff and printing more pictures, but I just can't find the time to sit down and work on my scrap booking. I am going to start working on this one night a week after Hailey goes to bed.
2. Read!! I love, love, love to read. But I haven't been doing much of that lately either. It's so hard to find the time. So, I am going to start giving myself a little time to spend reading on the weekends.
3. Take walk everyday. When the weather is nice enough I will take Hailey for a walk each afternoon. Once it gets too cold, I'll dust off the treadmill and start walking on that everyday.
4. Blog without feeling guilty. For some reason when I blog during Hailey's nap I feel guilty like I should be doing something else (like folding the piles of laundry). But, I need to have a little time to relax and do things I enjoy as well.

Well, I guess those are my ideas for now. Please check out the Activity Menu Challenge over at Andrea's blog for more ideas.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Activity Menu Challenge

Andrea at Lifesong had a fabulous idea to create an Activity Menu for the winter months to help keep those winter blues away. She posted about it a month ago and I signed up to participate. Then I promptly forgot.

So, what we are supposed to do is create a flexible schedule of activities we can do this winter. You can come up with ideas of things to do as a family and ideas of things to do for yourself. I had meant to put a posting up to try to help get more participants, but as I mentioned before- I forgot.

I know this is very short notice, but please go here to read the details and see if you can come up with some ideas by tomorrow! I'm breaking my own rule of no posting on the weekends to try to find some more participants! Please leave me a comment to let me know if you decide to participate. Sorry for the short notice!!

And now I'm off to go rack my brain for ideas!

Friday, October 12, 2007

Awards Aplenty

Apparently last week was the week for awards because I received several. And so, here they are:
This award was given to me from Sharon. I can't seem to find any information about this award, but given the name I assume it is to be given to people who lift you up. Thank you Sharon! I can always find encouraging uplifting words at Sharon's blog, so it's an honor that she passed this award on to me.

I don't see any rules about how many people I can give this to, so I am passing this onto to four people, as four is a nice even number, and I do like even numbers. And so, I pass this You Lift Me Up award on to:
Diary of a Caregiver

This Mathetes award was given to me by Grams. I honestly had no idea what the word Mathetes meant, so I looked at Dan King's blog, Management by God to learn more about this award that he created. In his words, "Mathetes is the Greek word for disciple, and the role of the disciple (per the Great Commission) it to make more disciples. In the spirit of this award, the rules are simple. Winners of this award must pick five other "disciples" to pass it on to. As you pass it on, I just ask that you mention and provide links for (1)this post as the originator of the award (Dan King of management by God), (2) the person that awarded it to you, and then (3) name and sites of the five that you believe are fulfilling the role of a disciple of Christ." Wow Grams- what a compliment! Thank you so much for this lovely award!

I am passing this Mathetes award on to:
A Joyful Journey
Mindless Chatter of a Busy Mom
My Quotidian Mysteries
My Spot of Blog
Notes From the Laundry Pile

This Egel Nest Award for Blog Excellence was given to me from ZAM. This award was created by Brad Egel as a way to honor your friends who you think have excellent blogs. Thank you ZAM for this award!

I don't see any guidelines for this one either, so I will pass it on to four people. So, I am awarding the Egel Nest Award for Blog Excellence to:

And finally, I received this award from Sharon and from Kelly. This award was designed by Mike At Ordinary Folk and was originally offered by Christy of Totally Fabulous. She says the award is for “bloggers who are fun, cool, and of course Totally Fabulous!” Thank you Sharon and Kelly for thinking I'm fun, cool, and totally fabulous! You ladies are pretty great yourselves.

Again, I'm passing this Totally Fabulous award on to four people:
Enjoy your awards ladies!!

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Hailey's First Birthday

I have been a bit busy this week, but today I have finally had some time to sit down at the computer and decide which of the 400 or so pictures to share with you from Hailey's first birthday.

Since all of our family lives out of town we had decided to celebrate Hailey's birthday in the town where most of our family lives. We're nice like that- we made the long trip so that they wouldn't all have to drive to see us. (Then they would have all wanted to stay at our house. And we wouldn't want that to happen. I'm kidding! Kind of. )

But I digress....

Since you can never be sure what the weather will be like during October we decided to be safe and plan an indoor party. So, Hailey's party was on Saturday afternoon at Chuck-E-Cheese. And, I'm sure you know that Rich was not disappointed in this choice. (See Where A Kid (or A Dad) Can Be A Kid).

Here are some pictures of the celebration (with a special thank you to my dad, who took most of the pictures).

Here's the birthday girl!
Hailey was quite excited to meet Chuck-E-Cheese.
She went right for his nose, of course.
Hailey gets a look at her cake.
"You want me to do what to the cake?"
"Here, would you like some?" Hailey's friend Arianna enjoys some cake too.
Hailey with big sister Brooke,
and cousins Dayna, David & Joel.
Hailey enjoys a ride.
Already falling asleep, as soon as I put her in her car seat.

Since the party was a bit overwhelming for a one year old, we decided to wait until we got back to my parents house and Hailey had a good nap before opening her presents.
Hailey clapping her hands at her presents.
Hailey LOVED her birthday cards.

Normally I think that greeting cards are a bit of a waste of money. But, not with Hailey. She still spends lots of time looking at all of her cards and carrying them around the house with her. And, of course she loves all of her presents too.

Thanks everyone for making Hailey's first birthday so much fun!

And, since I'm not doing my usual monthly posting of pictures of Hailey, I figured I'd just post our monthly pose of Hailey with Tigger today. Hailey is 12 months old!
You can check out the older postings by clicking on the month you would like to see. 11 months, 10 months, 9 months, 8 months, 7 months, 6 months, 5 months, 4 months and 3 months .

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Look Great in 2008 Weight Loss Challenge

Weight loss since my last weigh in- 1 pound

It took me two weeks to lose one pound.

This could take awhile.

Check out the other participants who have hopefully been more successful than me at Tales From The Scales.

24 pounds to go!

Wordless Wednesday #24

Bringing Hailey Home- 1 Year Ago Today

For more Wordless Wednesday fun click here or here.