Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year

It's New Year's Eve, as I type this....

This year, well it's been an interesting one. I've felt a bit off all year, but I've also taken on some exciting challenges. I'm working on my resolutions right now. Do you do resolutions? I usually complete some, but not all of them. This year I have some of the usuals - get fit (again), get organized (again), and try to be less of a yell-y mom (someday my kids will hear me when I speak in a normal tone. Right?)

In the coming year I want to accomplish a few things. I want to run a half marathon and I want to ride the 60 mile loop of the Wildflower. Last year I did the 30 all by myself. I hope to have roped in a partner for the 60 because that's a long way to ride all by myself. The run, not sure I can get someone to do that with me, but I'm going to try to get Jackie to do it. Shh, don't tell her, but she's also the rope-ee that I have in mind for the ride. Hee hee.
I was looking for some good graphics to use for my New Year posts for my Dating Dames and the Scented Life blogs. I have been finding some cool shots at All I can use them because it's a shop. That's something that I found out by working on TSL. I use shots all the time from Sephora or MAC or wherever and I just give credit at the bottom.

I love this New Year's Kiss. They are so lost in the moment and the photographer seemed more focused on the gentleman. I wonder what the story is here. I'd love to know.
This one looks like a fun party. That will be Max, Sarah, and I in a few minutes. Okay, well if you switch out fancy party clothes for pjs first. :D

Happy New Year to you!! Thanks for reading my blog.
Image credit for two New Years posters - All

Saturday, December 27, 2008

The Days Following Christmas Kind Of Run Together...

My nephew, Brad sitting quietly, studying Sarah's technique with the Guitar Hero. Look at his little fingers. My brother, also named, Brad, has the sweetest hands. He is a grown man and he uses his hands for his work laying tile, but there's something very young and child-like about his hands. I noticed yesterday that they look like Sarah's hands in a way. Maybe it's the roundness or them or the dimples. Anyway, I looked at them and instantly I remembered him as a baby. He was the sweetest little baby. Seems like it was just yesterday, not almost 30 years ago.

Here's his youngest son and his lovely wife. That baby, he has such an expressive face - smile, frown, smile, terror, smile, bigger smile. Very entertaining. :D

Here's another shot of Guitar-Hero-ing. Big hit, that game is.
Hayden in motion, pick it up, put it down, pick it up, put it down, pick it up, taste it, put it down, and on and on and on. He's got a job to do and he's darn serious about it.

A momentary rest, some eye contact and then he's back to work. See the one bare foot, he was gripping those toes over and over. Just thinking about it cracks me up.

Max and I are home alone tonight. It's so quiet without either of the girls. I think I'll go to bed and read.

Friday, December 26, 2008

The Day After Christmas

I have to make this very fast, because Sarah and I heading to bed.

My brother's family came for a visit today. It was the best day after Christmas that I've ever spent. Here's a shot of the kids playing with some moon sand. I got Brad Jr a set that includes this little plastic truck.
Hayden was in constant motion, until he fell asleep on his mom's lap. He's got the blur-thing going here.

Here's the whole family. Brad Jr by the front door, Ashlee leaning over talking to Dad, mom Shawna, and baby Hayden. And my feet. Can you see them? Pretty silly looking.

Here's a close-up of Hayden. He is such a handsome little guy. I couldn't use the flash - it made him cry, so it was hard to see if these shots were in focus. As you can tell, they really weren't, but my family is beautiful in spite of my faulty photography.

I hope you enjoyed your day, as well. Thank you for reading. :D

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Surviving the Week

Hello. I haven't written in a week. I'm sorry. It's been kind of a tough week.

Our guinea pig got sick all of a sudden. He wouldn't eat and I fed him with a syringe - water and applesauce (he likes apples). The next morning he seemed a bit better, but still very subdued. I made him up a box and he sat next to me all day while I did my work on the computer.

Well, it ends up that he wasn't better and that afternoon he died. It was so sad. I could tell when it was time to go, he leaned to the side and it looked like he was trying to squeak. Sarah and I petted him and told him that he was a brave boy and a good friend. We told him that he was strong and handsome and sweet. He looked pretty peaceful, but it was heart-breaking. I wouldn't want him to hang on just for us if he was hurting, but it's so quiet here without his squeaking. I miss that little guy.

The whole thing happened so quickly. I think he just got to be an old guy - he always seemed like a youngster, all hyper and super-fast romaine chomping. The romaine would give him a green beard. So cute.

I still feel so out of sorts. Bay was gone when it happened and Whoobie was officially her pet. He slept in her room for years. When she came home, she cried, but then she seemed okay. That is until she and my mom got into an argument last night and she slammed into her room. She has messed her doorway up over the years and it's all loose. The frame moves back and forth. This time, she slammed it so that I couldn't get it open at first. Darn kid.

This morning the kids enjoyed their Christmas, I think. Sarah and I looked outside and all the reindeer food was gone. Do you make reindeer food? They like to eat oats and glitter. It's so pretty when you toss it out, sparkles in the lights. Reindeer get pretty hungry with all that flying. Sarah slept in until 10:30. Can you believe that? She and I were up until midnight tracking Santa on NORAD. So hard to go to sleep when you know that he is coming.

I better get busy now. Happy holidays to you!!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

I'm Building Me A Love Altar

I had an interesting horoscope today. So interesting - to me - that I wrote about - me!! - at Dating Dames. Anywhere, here it is:

Happy Holy Daze, Leo!
If I could give you one gift for the holidays, it might be a magic object
to add to your love altar -- something like a pomegranate resting on red velvet,
or a golden heart-shaped magnet, or Pablo Neruda's book 100 Love Sonnets. What?
You don't have a love altar? Well then please begin creating one as soon as
possible, and continue building it throughout 2009. For the next 12 months, the
time will be right to get smarter, wilder, and kinder in your approach to
creating intimate connection.

I like it. I think I'm going to build that Love Altar. What can it hurt? I'll make it pretty.

My daughter has a tattoo. Seriously. I had no idea. Last night she raised her arm, her shirt slipped up and I said, "What is that?!" and it was a tattoo that her friend Mia gave her with her very own tattoo-making-whatever-you-call-it, because doesn't every freshman in high school need their very own tattoo -making -thingy??

I was upset, but what can I do? It's there. It's permanent. It's a tattoo.

It's messy, too. And big. The bottom is all smudgy. So, now it needs to be fixed. Why couldn't she wait one and a half years, when she will be 18, so that she could get it done by someone who was not 14 years old? I didn't punish her because I know that she has to look at it and go, "what was I thinking??"

She exhausts me.

Tomorrow is the last day of school for 2008. I'm looking forward to the break, but I'm going to miss the kids. Sleeping in a bit, now that's going to be good. I do love sleep.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Ruby Tuesday Geraniums

Happy Ruby Tuesday! I still have some color on the patio - my Geraniums. I used to have a candy-stripe colored plant, but it froze a few years ago. It was so pretty, white in the center, red along the edge. I think I'll look for another one this Summer.


These Geranium's are "men's red." I wrote about men and red at Dating Dames once. Apparently, men are drawn to an orange-red and women prefer a bluer-red. What do you think? I've even heard women say, ooh, I don't like orange-red. Personally, any red is a good red to me, but yeah, I prefer the bluer-red.

One time, we were camping at Fort Bragg, over in Mendocino, and against the campground's bathroom building, there was a HUGE red Geranium plant. It was bush-like, came out about 3 feet and my sister and I were eye-level with the top of the plant. I keep thinking, wait, didn't it go all the way to the roof, but I think I'm exaggerating in my memory there. Anyway, it was huge and beautiful and instantly made me think of my mom, as red Geraniums always do. Mom loves red. And Geraniums.

The Spinlash giveaway is still open at The Scented Life, if you are interested in entering. Right now, your odds are better than 1 in 5 to win. I'm just sayin'............

Happy Ruby Tuesday to you and if you'd like to participate or view the photos of other participants, please visit Mary over at Work of the Poet.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Baby's 1st Christmas

I was playing around with my camera the other day, something that I've not had a lot of time to do lately. I was trying to take a shot of a candle that I was reviewing, I wanted to show it lit because the holder was so pretty.

I don't know the trick to taking low light photos. I tried changing the shutter speed and that was interesting. Then, because I had the camera in my hand, I started pointing it at pretty much anything in the room. Do you do that? It reminds me of when I start watering the garden and pretty soon I've sprayed off the entire patio, including the overhead spiderwebs because it's just so darn much fun to play with the house.

Later, after I drove Bay over to Greg's house, I held the phone in my lap and would put it up and shoot blindly down the dark road in front of me. The lights looked like streams, slippery, swirly, stripes.
I decided to try some closer shots of my tree, which got tricky because I couldn't tell if the camera was fully in focus. Can you see me in the pink bulb below?
One of our family traditions is the Baby's 1st Christmas ornaments. Here is Sarah's ornament, from 1998.

And Bailey's little bear from 1992.

Max's ornament is a little harder to see. It's a white baby bottle. Can you see it? It's in the middle. Max's first Christmas was 1990. That was probably my most exciting Christmas ever. I can remember opening all my presents with my tiny little boy in my lap.

Mom got all the ornaments for me. I'm very excited about the holidays this year. I think we are going to do a bunch of baking this weekend. We make chocolate chip cookies, decorated sugar cookies, snickerdoodles, fudge....... and I think we'll do something else, something new. Maybe some sort of brittle. Any suggestions?
I still haven't heard from Steve. I have an ad up at, thinking that if he doesn't want me, doesn't want to continue to pursue a committed relationship maybe it's time to move on. But he never said he didn't want one, he just said he did not know about the future right now. I'm so confused. I want him, but he does this out of contact thing that makes me crazy. It hurts to be ignored. For days. For weeks. Doesn't he feel that I'm interesting? I don't want anyone else, but I feel like an ass sitting up here on the shelf for so long.
So, I made an ad and I really think I'm very relieved that nobody else wants me either and that's why I'm baking and taking picture after picture of my tree. I'm focusing on Christmas. I bought Max a little iPod Shuffle. Shh, don't tell him. He's going to love it. I hope.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Interested in Some FREE Mascara??

Today Bay and I got to do something very fun. We got to try the new Spinlash mascara with the spinning applicator brush. We loved it. It stays very soft and flexible, not sticky. I liked that. I'm giving away 4 of the Spinlashes at The Scented Life.

Come check out our before and afters and leave me a comment. I will be choosing 4 random commenters to win a Spinlash mascara of their own. Here's Bay with the mascara on.
She has some fancy lashes even without makeup. I haven't had lashes like that since I was 16.

Tomorrow I have the opportunity to take some senior photos for some girls that Mom knows. I'm very excited. To practice, I took some shoots of my super special senior boy, Max. Here he is waiting for the schoolbus on the front porch.

Now, I'm off to give him some medicine before bed. I hope that you have a wonderful evening/day.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

A Very Girly Christmas

I took some photos of my family's Christmas decorations. For most of my life, I did the traditional real tree with a bunch of collected multi-colored balls, including many that were used when iIwas a kid or were made by me. Then, one year I was at Walmart and I saw the cutest little tree all done up in pink, purple, and a funky lime-green. I loved it! So, I picked up a little tree, set it up on a table (eek, so not what we did growing up), and I decorated the rest of the place in girly colors. My little tree saved me so much money and I liked the idea that I wasn't hurting any live trees.

I usually put shells in this glass vase. I really like the bubbles in the glass. You can see my little white tree in the background, above.
I know that a pink, purple, and blue is not for everybody, but I really enjoy it. It's fun to change things up - to hang purple stockings and ropes of pretend pearls (I hung those above the artwork in my living room).

Here's the tree. It's almost like an Easter tree, in a way. I couldn't take a photo that didn't wash out the pink glow with the stronger flash. Trust me when I saw that it's pretty.
I hope that my kids enjoy Christmas this year. I'm trying so hard to make it special, but I can feel myself starting to slip into a sad place. I miss my boyfriend and I'm pissed at him, too. I miss my Grandparents and I worry about how the holiday is going to be for my Grandma. This will be her first Christmas without Grandpa.
Mom, it's going to hard for Mom, too.
Sometimes the holidays can be tricky. There'a a lot of pressure involved, pressure to make things nice and memorable. Special. I look forward to them, sure, but there's also a part of me that wants them to hurry up and be over. I'm really fighting that part of me right now.
I'm going to sit back and enjoy my pink Christmas. I'm determined.

Ruby Tuesday - Pencils

I haven't taken part in Mary, the Teach's Ruby Tuesday for awhile. So, I shot my box of colored pencils this morning. I haven't used any of them in so long. I have the Prisma colors and some watercolor pencils - I love these pencils, but I haven't used them for awhile. The top of the box was very dusty. I think I'll get them out this weekend. Sarah and I can draw something fun.
I bet a lot of people are going to have holiday decorations for their Ruby Tuesday shots. That wouldn't work for me - my decorations are white, pink, purple, and blue. Bay came home and said, "It's so girly in here!" and it is. I'll post some photos of the decorations later.
Do you color with the traditional red and green or do you like to mix it up?

Saturday, December 6, 2008

The Happening, With Toots

Bettie Page is ill. Did you hear? Did you know that she's 85? In my mind she's still the young girl with the bangs. Someday, when I know what I'm doing and I have a studio, I'd like to have a set up where I could do fun pin-up type photos for ladies. Sort of like the way they used to do those makeover glamour shots with the pink frou frou wraps back in the late '80s.
Leah came over to watch a movie with Max, Sarah, and me tonight. It was nice to have company - I was so excited that I ran right out to buy snacks. Leah brought the movie, The Happening . It was interesting. I like Mark Wahlberg - he's cute and he has this low, soft voice. Very effective. I'm not clear on some parts of the movie and I won't talk about it here in case you have not seen it and plant to at some time.
Sarah kept tooting. And tooting. And tooting. She finds this hil-ar-i-ous. I do not. I think that the first one embarrassed her, but we giggled, so she kept it up. I love my girl, but I wish she was not so crazy about the body humor. Poop jokes, toots, boogies, barfing on the cartoons - that kid loves it all.
Time to get the tooter and her brother to bed. I wish you are good evening/day/morning!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Wednesday - Just checking in!

It's time to get moving again. I have turned into a couch potato. Okay, I have always been a couch potato - I was temporarily an active person. I want to be an active person AGAIN!

I wrote about The Flat Belly Diet over at Veggie Chic last night - ran across it over at while surfing around trying to think of something to write about. I did the first of 3 day Jumpstart, but I went nuts this evening. Something about the word "diet" makes me wonky. I get a headache. I crave pretzels, then I think, okay they are only pretzels, so I eat them, then I eat some more, then Sarah goes to a Christmas party and brings me back some goodies and I eat them, really, getting active is the way to go.
Here's a sleepy shot of Sarah before our 5k on Thanksgiving. We were active on Thanksgiving, at least. ;D
Sarah got to ride in a horse-drawn carriage tonight. Pretty cool, don't you think?
I'm off to make some dinner now. I wish you a wonderful day/night!