Monday, October 29, 2012

a really short story and free stuff!

Julianna had a quarter-sized skinned place on her ankle that kept sticking to her sock.  It never had time to heal, I guess because the air couldn't get to it and her sock would continually stick to the small bloody spot. 

At first, I thought she was just asking for a band-aid each day for the novelty of it but when I looked closer I realized she was right and the boo-boo really couldn't air out enough to form a scab.  Unfortunately, her school has a closed-toed shoe policy and she has to wear socks every day.

Fortunately, at just the right time I remembered the tube of Safeskin Kids Antibacterial Gel that I received in the mail a week or so ago and I hastily appplied some of that before school one morning to speed up the healing process.

That was the last we had to deal with that and I was pleased with the results.
I am also pleased to be able to host a giveaway for one of my readers to win one (1) tube of SAFESKIN Kids Antibacterial Gel. Just leave a comment on this post telling me you'd like to win.  I'll pick a winner on Thursday, November 1st and have the company send it to the winner.
As a bonus, here's a link for a $1 off coupon for SAFESKIN Kids Antibacterial Gel available at select Walmart stores. 
Full Disclosure: I received a tube of Safeskin Kids Antibacterial Gel and a small gift card to Walmart in exchange for writing this post.  As usual, all thoughts and opinions expressed are indeed my own.

Friday, October 26, 2012

smartphone stuff and a random slow Friday afternoon question

I wrote a post a few months ago about why I love my android smartphone and I just read this article today.  I have to say, I am not at all surprised that Samsung is outselling Apple. 

I also recently read that the large number of negative comments about the iPhone 5 on the website made it the number one trending topic associated with the hashtag #FML.  If you're not familiar with the site, basically it's just a place where people can complain about life and I think it's pretty funny that the iPhone 5 was a trending topic there.

The bottom line is: I still love my android smartphone.  I just don't get why having an iPhone is such a status symbol.  Clearly people are buying the Galaxy and loving it.

But at my sister-in-law's shower the other week several people laughed when my daughter declared, "My mom won't pay for apps." 

I get it. I really do. I mean, I know a lot of people love their iPhones. I just still don't get why people are so willing to pay for apps and songs and ebooks and other features that android phones have for free. 


Samsung is releasing a Galaxy S III Mini soon and has recently won battles in court with Apple regarding tablet patents.  I don't know about you, but I'm thinking about investing less in Apple and more in Samsung.

Heck, if the Galaxy is good for nothing else, it at least beats the iPhone in the blender test.


Random question:  I have lots and lots of 1-4 year olds to buy Christmas presents for this year.  Gift suggestions?  Also, how about reasonably priced gifts for 6 year old boys and 15 year old boys?  Just gift cards for the older ones?

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

bullets of randomness

  • I made these for Josh's birthday and they were divine.  I had extras left over and took them to give away at school and got rave reviews.  I will definitely keep this recipe and I strongly encourage you to make it this weekend. Yum! (I found the original link on Pinterest, of course.)

  • I'm at a standstill on my weight loss.  I'm down 27 pounds and hope to lose about 15 or 16 more.  I know what I need to do, but right now I don't think it's going to happen.  I need to let go of some stress which is almost impossible until we get to Mexico.  I also need to ditch the bowl of Halloween candy.  I think I can work on that one.
  • I think we've finally found a chore system that works at our house.  It's taken a long, long time and I'm still hesitant to say that it's stuck but I think we're there. We've had the Melissa and Doug chore chart for a long time, but Julianna wouldn't stick with it even with paid incentives.  What we do now is put all of the magnets on the board at the beginning of every week and when she does a chore she can remove a magnet.  Then at the end of the week we could the magnets she took down and she gets a coin for each one.  Every ninth coin goes into a "God" jar and every tenth coin goes into a "Save" jar.  The rest are hers to keep and spend as she sees fit.  We even made a smaller chart for Josh so that he can begin getting used to the idea of helping around the house and being rewarded for his work. 
picture from Amazon

  • For our anniversary Jonathan gave me ten gifts one for each year we'd been married and it was the sweetest thing.  I don't really like presents, but have you ever known a girl to turn down gifts?  I got clothes, jewelry, running gear, and books that have been on my To Read list for a while.  (He even bought a bathing suit for me. Isn't he brave?) Hooray for romantic husbands!

picture from White House Black Market

  • Years ago we bought the boxed set of Charlie Brown DVDs and somehow over the last one or two years we've lost the disc for It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!  I'm so disappointed and I keep meaning to look up when it will be shown on TV this season, but I keep forgetting.
  • We leave for our trip in ten days.  The list of things to do before then is a mile long, but TEN. DAYS.  YIPPPEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, October 22, 2012

thirty six months

My little Buddy,

Your big day is here!  You're three years old!  I hope it doesn't seem like a let down since we already celebrated with family yesterday.  You had a lot of fun.  I know you won't be able to remember your 3 year party when you're older but I sure hope that I can remember your excited little face when you opened a couple of your presents or when you watched us put that cupcake on your plate.

Your birth was a storybook birth.  It couldn't have gone better except for the meconium that kept you in the NICU with junk in your lungs.  It turned out to be a blessing though because Daddy and I got special time with you all to ourselves right from the get-go. 

We've had a good three years, Josh.  You've changed so much since you were that little butterball at birth but yet not a lot from your two year birthday and as you get older the changes will only become less and less noticable. 

But in three short years you've certainly changed us, Buddy.  You're teaching your sister how to love others even when it's hard.  You're teaching your mom and dad to be patient even when it's impossible.  You're teaching me not to scream even when I desparately want to act like a toddler.  We're a more incredible family because of you.

Some things you've said this month that I want us to remember include, "I want my monkey with the tail like my name" (referring to the curled tail as a J) and "When I get bigger I'm going to marry my sister Jules" (coming off the heels of mommy and daddy's anniversary you've been very concerned with who you will marry). 

You've become quite the praise singer and will often be quietly singing "Bless the Lord oh my soul, ohhh-hhhh my soul..." while you play.  You also still like to sing Call Me Maybe and Zac Brown songs, but you always come back to praise songs "My God's not dead, He's surely alive!" or one of the Gaither's songs from Gaither's Pond (one of your absolute favorite things to watch).


You can recognize some letters but really have no desire or patience to learn more. One day you looked at a bag Julianna had in the car and you told me, "Jules has a bag with my J-O-S-H name on it!"  You do love to write and color though I suspect it will be a while longer before you can write your name.

When you were younger you used to love to carry around a spoon everywhere you went.  Now it's more of the desire to carry various little treasures with you wherever you go.  If you have a pocket you want something in it; it doesn't matter if it's an eraser, a small toy, a rock or a stick.  It thrills you to have a pocket in your shirt too "like Daddy."

So starved for attention you will lap it up like an eager puppy whenever it's offered.  I took ten minutes out of cooking dinner the other night to simply play "hunting" with you and a couple of Nerf guns.  We were sneaking around corners like they were trees all through the house.  We spotted birds, deer, and even monkeys.  You were so excited someone was playing with you that I actually thought you might wet your pants.  When I asked you exclaimed, "No! I don't need to potty! There's a orange yellow reindeer!!!"

Your 24 month pants are finally high waters and at three years old we've officially retired anything 24 months or smaller. You've grown almost an inch in the last three months and even though you're still shorter than your cousin who is six months younger than you, you are definitely growing quickly.

You love to ride your bike but with the cooler temperatures and earlier darkness it's hard to squeeze in after dinner like we used to.

You can go to the bathroom almost completely by yourself and you (pretend) read lots of books, but you've gone back to wanting someone to feed you at every meal.  You'll sit there all the live-long day if no one will spoon your food in your mouth and no amount of Big Boy Talk can convince you to eat.  I suppose part of you really wants to remain my baby.  And while it's inconvenient, I'll take it.  It won't be too much longer before you'll be embarrased by your ol' Mama.

I hope you enjoy your birthday today, Joshy. Milk the heck out of it just like I know you will!

Love you bunches,

Friday, October 19, 2012

do you know what today is?

Ten years ago today I married the love of my life.  Now after two kids, multiple pets and a couple of jobs later, I still remember getting in his truck outside of Lowe's in Archdale and being handed a dozen roses just like it was yesterday.  And then when he kept my feet warm on the balcony outside Wingo's apartment over 14 years ago?  Well, as it turns out that was all it took for him to secure a place in my heart forever.

I'm so looking forward to the next 10 years with you, Booger! Happy anniversary!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

the year i loved

I was thinking the other day about how many foods I've learned to love this year that I've never before even liked.  Apparently, thirty four is the year to learn to love new foods.  I hope to add a few more to the list before the year ends.

  • broccoli (roasted with sea salt and garlic)
  • sweet potatoes (roasted with Parmesan cheese)
  • eggs (preferably scrambled and especially good with veggies and cheese or just with salsa)
  • kale (sauteed with sun-dried tomatoes)
  • blueberries (preferably fresh and especially good on a toasted English muffin with a smear of peanut butter)
  • potato salad
  • cabbage
  • salmon 

And finally, this one's going to sound strange, but put chocolate milk on that list.  Running has really made me love chocolate milk again just like I am a three year old kid.  There's nothing like it after a long run.

What have you learned to love as you've gotten older?  Maybe I will learn to like it too.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

one too many margaritas

picture dump

Here are my recent instagram pictures.
[You can follow me @c525600.]

loving the Halloween books I had stashed away

an afternoon at home with my sweet Buddy

my babies before school one morning

Mom, look at my muscles!

a scared little boy on the Tilt-a-Whirl at the Dixie Classic Fair
Mom and I before heading into the fair
the turkeys I found at Target
giant gummy bears they bought at the fair

she read 5 Magic Tree House books in 6 days

love running on this road

school picture day

what happens when you put two kids in a pumpkin patch

Saturday, October 13, 2012


Josh, furiously tapping one of those pink big block erasers, "Dad, my remote just won't work!"


I walked into the kitchen the other day to see Julianna holding individual Pokemon cards up to her fish bowl and then hear her describing the various characteristics of each Pokemon to the fish.  She told the fish it was "Happy time."


And finally, a story from one of Julianna's teachers:

One day the teacher's assistant looked over at Julianna sitting at her desk doing individual work and she was slowly, rhythmically wagging her finger back and forth really close to her face and following it with her eyes.  The teacher walked over to her and quietly whispered, "Julianna, what are you doing?"

Julianna rolled her eyes and sighed. Then in a very sarcastic she replied, "I'm trying to hypnotize myself."

The teacher said she just told her, "Let me know if it works!"

Friday, October 5, 2012

by the numbers

Today, by the numbers:
  • 2 absentee voting ballots in my possession waiting to be filled out and mailed in
  • 3 days until we pick up a certain little boy's prize winning decorated apple (2nd place: $5) and a certain girl's Lego castle from the fair
  • 17 days until we celebrate a little boy's third birthday
  • 28 days until our anniversary trip
  • 8 days I'll spend without seeing my babies
  • 12 miles I've run so far this week/month
  • 8 miles I'm going to run on tomorrow
  • 25 pounds lost since June 11th
  • 22 days until the new Trader Joe's opens in Winston-Salem
What numbers are you counting?
I've never been to Trader Joe's. What can I look forward to?

Thursday, October 4, 2012

would you keep working if you won the lottery?

Not sure why, but I often ponder my answer to this question.  I also ponder other people's answer to this question or at least what I think they would answer. Is that weird?  For instance, Jonathan would answer "no" I'm sure because he always says he'd love to be a SAHD. I've been there and done that and I'm not sure it's for me.

I mentioned earlier that I started a new job this school year.  My previous position was eliminated and I was added to a "surplus list" for my county meaning that they would move me to an open position at another school before they'd talk to new applicants.  It's not the best place to be in because the school doesn't really get a choice regarding hiring you and you don't really get a choice of schools, it's just whatever is available at that time.

Fortunately for me, it worked out that I got a position at a pretty good school not far from my old school (a 17 minute drive from my house) and not on the other side of the county (which could have been a 40 minute drive).  I like that it's a position where I get to teach middle and high school again, something I haven't done since before Julianna was born.  I even teach a couple of my previous students.

So here we are going into the fifth sixth week of school and I finally feel pretty settled at my new school.  I've definitely worked my tail off getting adjusted and getting into the new routine. The good thing is that after the semester is over my classes here repeat themselves so despite the large amount of upfront work, it's going to get easier.

Before the school year started I was kinda frustrated with the whole situation and I began questioning whether I should even be teaching at all.  Taking the GRE and wondering about starting Master's course work... I don't know... I'm not good at making decisions.  For now I think I'm just content being where I am trying to keep my head above water in a new job. But it does have me wondering if I would keep working if I won the lottery.

What do you think? Would you keep working if you won the lottery?

Wednesday, October 3, 2012


I love October.  It's probably the busiest month of the year for me, but it's also probably my favorite.  Some of the things I look forward to in October include:

  • the visible reminder of God's amazing creations everywhere you look outside
  • the Dixie Classic Fair
  • being able to put out fall decorations
  • chili in the crock-pot
  • cooler weather (jeans, boots, and scarves!)
  • our anniversary
  • roasting hot dogs and s'mores
  • Josh's birthday
  • pumpkin crisp!
  • excuse to dress up and eat candy (Halloween)
  • painting pumpkins (and sometimes carving them)
  • the end of first quarter at school
  • yummy seasonal flavors of coffee creamer
We've already been to the fair (which I'll post about soon) and gotten the fall decorations out.  I'm still waiting on the rest of the good things in coming weeks, but I'm so excited!  Best yet, Jonathan and I leave for our anniversary trip in just a few weeks. I can't wait! All you moms of littles out there know how much we need it.

Anyway, it used to be that the summer months were my favorite and I still enjoy them a lot, but the older I get the more I like the fall.  Does that make me officially OLD? Whatever, October is where it's at! (Sorry about the misplaced preposition, Mom!)

October is also breast cancer awareness month.  It seems like every month lately I add another person to the list of who I know fighting cancer.  On that note, I'd like to ask you to please pray for my mother-in-law today as she enters another step of cancer treatment and then isolation for a while.  Please pray for my friend, Malika who just had a double mastectomy and please continue prayers for my friend Vinny who continues his almost five-year battle.

What do you love about October?
Who do you know fighting cancer?

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