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Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Hey friends! Sorry this is going up late. I hope you'll participate and share your recipes!
Today's 2 On Tuesday topic is:
What are your two go-to meals? What do you cook most often in your household?
  
Sarah shared a great crock pot pork chop recipe with me earlier this month, and I made it for the first time on January 1st. It is so good - I've made it three times since then! 
Crock Pot Pork Chops
  • One packet dry ranch dressing mix
  • One can cream of whatever soup
  • 1/2 cup of chicken stock
  • 1 teaspoon(ish) of chopped garlic
  • 4 boneless pork chops
  1. Combine the first four ingredients in your crock pot; mix well. 
  2. Place your pork chops in your crock pot. 
  3. Cook 4-6 hours on low. 
I always double the first four ingredients because as is the recipe does not make a lot of sauce. I serve the pork chops and gravy over rice, and it is so good! The original recipe calls for 1/4 cup of white wine and 1/4 cup of chicken stock, so you can try that if you like. I just never have dry white wine in the house. I made this again this past Sunday and I ran out of cream of whatever soup, so I subbed in one can of chicken gravy and it was delish!

My go-to meal when I'm rushed or haven't been to the grocery store is baked salmon (or halibut, or tilapia). I buy frozen salmon fillets from Sam's and drizzle them with olive oil. I coat them with lemon pepper seasoning, and place in a foil packet with sliced lemons on top. Bake 25ish minutes at 350 degrees - so good, fresh, and healthy! 

My favorite not-so-good for you easy meals are Suddenly Salad Ranch & Bacon Pasta (add tuna and it is a meal!) and chili made from this kit. Seriously, it makes the best chili I've ever had in my life. 


For more recipe and meal ideas, check out the recipe tab on my blog - its on the right sidebar. Also, head on over to Cole's place and check out the Tuesday at the Table link ups for more great recipe ideas!
 

Monday, January 30, 2012

I Wish...

I wish that weekends weren't so short. 

I wish that I would wake up rested and renewed in the morning instead of asking myself "how many hours until I can go back to sleep?"

I wish the plaque would leave our house. One or all of us has been sick since the beginning of January. We just keep passing around the germs to one another. 

I wish my birthday hadn't sucked the big one this year. 

I wish my husband would try a little harder to make the things that are important to me the things that are important to him - even if he does think they don't matter. 

I wish I could lose weight while eating what I want and not working out. 

I wish that I found foods like celery, cottage cheese, and greek yogurt delicious tasting. 

I wish that just once I'd see myself the way other people see me. 

I wish that money would grow on trees. 

I wish that laundry would fold itself. & that Shout actually got out all stains. 
I wish that I was as popular and well liked as some other blog peeps out there. 

I wish I had more (in real life) girlfriends. 

(Points to you if you know this song...) I wish I was a little bit taller/I wish I was a baller. I wish I had a girl who looked good, I would call her. 

What do you wish?

Tomorrow's 2 On Tuesday topic is:
What are your two go-to meals? What do you cook most often in your household? 

Friday, January 27, 2012

Dear Douchebag...

It’s back, friends! This is what many of you said was one of your favorite blog topics, so in an attempt to please my readers (ha!) I’ve decided to make this a regular feature.
Either write your own post (leave me the link in the comments section), or leave some of your own letters in the comments section!

Dear Speed Racer, 

You know, it really won’t hurt you to park further from the store. I’ve been waiting behind you for 10 minutes in your search for the perfect parking space. Old Lady McGee seems to be cleaning her dentures, and I don’t think she’ll be pulling out of her spot any time soon. How about you move your car so I can get to where I need to be this century?

Beep beep! No, really. 

Andrea
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Dear Wal-Mart worker, 

I’m guessing you missed your Customer Service 101 training. If you had taken it, I’m sure you would know “I don’t know” is not the proper answer when I ask you where product XXX can be found. Nor is “did you look for it?” acceptable. 

Sincerely, 

It’s a poor economy and other people would love your job.
_________________________________________

Dear Daycare Worker, 

I suppose I should tell you that my husband and I refer to you as “Sassy Sequin Pants”. Really, I adore your style. Tights, sequin shorts, and glitter Tom’s are an excellent look when you’re waist deep in poop and snot. Still, I can’t fault your ability to accessorize. Your beret is quite sassy. 

Work it, girl.
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Dear Chick-Fil-A, 

I’ve long referred to you as the Target of fast food. Seriously, I love you bunches. However, you recently stepped in it. Please explain to me why I must pay for cream cheese when I purchase a bagel? Really? Panera does not make me pay for cream cheese with my bagel. 

Get it together. 

_________________________________________

Dear Parents, 

I realize your child is probably on your last nerve. Dropping him or her in the Chick-Fil-A play zone and immersing yourself in your iPhone probably seems like the only way to hold on to your sanity. However, if you don’t get your inattentive butt in the play zone and extract your 5 foot, 100 pound “under 3 year old” I will shank you. 

Sincerely, 

The woman who is disciplining your brat while you check into Foursquare. 

_________________________________________

Dear Kohls, 

Marking something up in price so you can put on sale for 40% off is not really a deal. I’m not dumb and I realize I am paying the same price for goods as I would elsewhere. 

I love the Kohl’s cash, though. 

_________________________________________

Dear Kristin Cavallari, 

Well played, girlfriend. I guess he isn’t going to break off your engagement now, is he?

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Mindless Fun on a Thursday Morn...

Mallorie from Happy Home tagged me in a MeMe, and since I’m lacking in inspiration I thought I would play along.

11 Randoms About Me

1.      I get super crazy about having a clean floor right after I’ve swept and mopped. I will literally get down on my hands and knees and pick up little bits of dirt or whatever is tracked in the house. It is absolutely insane.

2.      I never wake up on time. An alarm is just a suggestion, right? Who wants to be on time, anyway? Make an entrance!

3.      I am a huge fan of the Transformers movies. Jason and I watched the most recent movie this weekend, and I cried when I thought Bumblebee was going to die. I do believe I screamed “Noooooooooo! Not Bumblebeeeeeeeeeeeeee!” as I ugly cried.

4.      I buy salad greens every time I go to the grocery store, intending to get my salad on, but those greens end up turning brown and slimy in my produce drawer. Good intentions and all that.

5.      It drives me crazy when Cooper tells me no. I mean, I know every parent doesn’t want their child to tell them no, but I think I probably take it to another level. I float above myself when it happens and I actually see myself becoming my mother. “Don’t you tell me no, Mister! I AM YOUR MOTHER!

6.      I am a diehard Republican, but I have 0 interest in the Republican candidates. Political rant: While I think Gingrich has the best hope of actually balancing the budget, I think he’s a bit of a douche. Jason says that shouldn’t matter but it does. Cheater cheater and all that.

7.      I am horrible about buying picture frames and never placing pictures in them. Jason forced me to go and get pictures printed before Christmas since we were hosting Christmas Eve dinner. He said he was embarrassed. Whatevs, Jason. Step one is the picture frame. Step 20 is the picture.

8.      My house is only truly clean when I know someone is coming to visit.

9.      My method of cleaning is to move things from room to room, until it finally ends up in the final room and I’m forced to put it all away. When I clean the kitchen, I put everything that doesn’t belong in the living room. What doesn’t belong gets moved to the stairs, and so on and so forth. I’m really just moving messes around the house, but it works for me.

      It would literally make my year if Kim would rip off her wig and show us her real hair.

      I used to spend a lot of time daydreaming about being a contestant on shows like American Idol, The Voice, etc. Now I daydream about being the parent of the winner of American Idol. In every situation where someone achieves something or wins something, I think how proud of a parent I would be if that was Cooper.

Mallorie's Questions

1.      If you could live anywhere where would that be?
If money was no object, I’d have a beach house on Edisto Island, and I’d live in Columbia, SC or Charleston, SC.
2.      What is your favorite board game?
Life.
3.      What is your favorite season?
Winter. It goes far too quickly in SC/GA.
4.      If you had to choose would you rather have a perfectly cleaned house each day OR never have to cook again?
Ooh, this is a hard one. I’d choose the perfectly cleaned house, though.
 5.   If you found out that you had unlimited funds and money was no longer a problem what is the first thing you would buy?
I’d pay off all our debt and I’d probably buy new cars for Jason and I – something bigger for me and more fuel efficient for me.
6.      Do you get a bigger rush from a big splurge or finding a great deal?
I’m an impulse shopper… so really, both.
7.      How do you sleep at night? Side, back, tummy?
I sleep on my left side.
8.      What is your guilty pleasure TV show?
I love Real Housewives of Atlanta and New Jersey.
9.      When you were younger what did you want to be when you grew up?
A writer – which I guess in a way came true!
1    What is your favorite blog post that you've written so far?
Probably my pregnancy posts or my post about depression.
11  Which would you rather have painted, nails or toes?
Nails!
I'm being lame and not tagging anyone... but feel free to play along if you would like!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Valentine’s Day Polka Dot Mani Tutorial

Hey friends! Today I am guest posting at Stuttering Shell. Hop on over to Michelle’s blog and check out my tutorial for this super cute, super easy polka dot mani – it’s perfect for Valentine’s Day!
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I hope to see you there!

Monday, January 23, 2012

2 On Tuesday: Music

Happy Tuesday! I hope you’ll join in and link up today to talk about your favorite music!

Today’s topic is:

What is the song you play when you want to get pumped up?

What is the song you play when you want/need to cry?

What is the song you play when you’re cleaning?

What is the song you play when you’re exercising?

(You do not have to link videos – you can just list the songs if that is easier for you. )

I love old school rap music, and there is always one song I put on when I need a little boost.

Young MC – Bust A Move

When I want/need to cry (come on, I’m not the only one who puts on music and cries, am I?) I put on some Coldplay. I don’t even like Coldplay, and this song makes me cry.

Coldplay – Fix You

When I’m cleaning, I listen to the Glee soundtracks on repeat. I loved the Treble Tone’s performance of “I Will Survive/Survivor”!

Glee – I Will Survive/Survivor

As far as exercising, who am I kidding? I don’t exercise. I’m excited to see your recommendations, though!

And for a laugh – did you see the skit SNL did about Adele this weekend? It fits in perfectly with my second question. You must watch!

I hope you will link up today! I look forward to reading your answers!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

A Case of the Mondays

Don’t forget to take my Reader Survey and be entered to win a $25 gift card!

Dear Lord… ever feel like you need a weekend to recover from your weekend? We didn’t even do anything this weekend and I’m ready to tear my hair out. Cooper has been a crazy man and (as I write this on Sunday evening) I am SO ready for bedtime. I love you, kid, but… go to bed!

We have been so lazy around here since Cooper’s birthday, mainly because we’ve all been sick. I woke up last Friday morning and couldn’t hear out of my right ear. Jason convinced me I had a wax build up (I swear I clean my ears daily) so I ignored it, and it got progressively worse. On Sunday, it started hurting so I went to Urgent Care. The doctor was shocked I had waited so long to come in and told me it was the worst infection she’s ever seen. (Why I am always the best at these types of things?!) She started me on two different types of ear drops and one oral antibiotic. ($70 ear drops with insurance that did not work. Shoot me now!)

Being as I have never had an ear infection (at least not that I can remember) I had no idea what to expect as far as recovery. Even with the meds, instead of getting better it just got worse. I couldn’t hear at all out of my right ear. It felt like cotton was stuffed inside and I couldn’t hear unless I turned my left side to face the person speaking. I finally went back to the doctor this past Friday, and not only had the right ear not gotten better, but I had an ear infection in my left ear.

Super awesome. Thankfully he put me on a stronger antibiotic and a steroid, and the left ear has cleared up. I still can’t hear out of the right ear, but it does feel less “full” so I’m hopeful.

Now Jason and Cooper are both sick with colds and basically I just want to bleach my whole house this coming week.

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Anyone have any tips for curling short hair? This is the length my hair is now. I’m growing it out, but it is taking forever. I don’t want super long hair (because my hair is so thick, I think I would be miserable with super long hair) but it would be nice to have shoulder length hair, I think. My hair is a little longer than it looks because I curl it under.

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I haven’t used a curling iron since college, and I have no idea what I’m doing. Way back when, you used to curl towards your face and under. I take it you are supposed to curl away from your face now? I’m clueless. I don’t even know if my hair is long enough to really curl without looking stupid.

I did buy this curling iron (1 inch) after hearing According to Nina say it was what she uses regularly.

Wal-Mart

So, any tips?

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I’ve raved about one of my favorite shampoos and conditioners to you guys before – Pureology Nanoworks – but I stopped using it because of the expense. (One 8oz bottle retails around $50.) Like I said, it is expensive, but it saved me from damaged hair after a coloring mishap. I was in Trade Secret Friday and they have all their liters on sale, buy one full price and get 75% off the second liter. That is a great deal on Pureology and you should check it out if you are a Pureology user.

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My Twitter friend, Jenn, sells Arbonne and a while back mentioned they were having a 50% off sale. I took the opportunity to snatch up the RE9 Advanced Face set. I’ve been using it for two weeks, and so far so good. I will give a full review after 6 weeks or so of use.

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Tomorrow is 2 On Tuesday, and I’ll hope you’ll come by and post! The topic is:

What is the song you play when you want to get pumped up?

What is the song you play when you want/need to cry?

What is the song you play when you’re cleaning?

What is the song you play when you’re exercising?

Can wait to read your answers! See you tomorrow!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Advertising on My Chihuahua Bites!

This is a work in progress. Smile Stay tuned!

Reader Survey & a GIVEAWAY!

This month I’ve joined in with SITS to participate in the 31 Days to Build a Better Blog challenge. It’s been really eye opening… not only am I trying to assess my blog from my readers’ perspectives, but I’m also re-evaluating my reasons for blogging.

I’ve been blogging for a long time… since 2008. That’s three years of words, pictures, laughs, and tears. Sometimes it has felt like the most natural, rewarding thing in the world, and other times it has felt like a chore I have to check off my to-do list.

I told Jason tonight that I feel like I’ve stopped blogging for myself and started blogging for numbers. I sit around and try to think up topics that my readers will like instead of blogging about something that’s important or interesting to me. When was the last time I wrote a “Dear Cooper” post? I stopped because I thought y’all found it boring. I don’t really blog very much about my day to day life. Why? I just don’t know.

In 18 years when my son is grown, I don’t want him to read this blog and learn how to make a peppermint wreath. I want him to read this blog and know what kind of woman and mother I was at this point in time. Is that coming across in my blog? I just don’t know. I’m not saying tutorials, recipes, etc. are bad – I just want to try to balance things out with more posts about me.

Do you, as my reader, know who I am? Does that come across in my writing? Do you feel I’m “real”? Can you relate to me? That’s what is important to me.

With that said, what you think of my blog matters to me. I want this blog to be someplace you visit regularly. I want to build relationships with my readers. Your opinion is important to me, and I need your help.

I want to solicit your opinion. I’ve developed a reader survey, and in appreciation for the time you spend answering my questions, I’m going to give away a gift card to one lucky reader.  All you have to do is answer the questions below in the comments section. One commenter will win a $25 gift card to the store of their choosing (Wal-Mart, Target, Amazon, or Sephora).

Please be honest. (Don’t be mean – be honest. Smile) I appreciate your honesty, and I know I’m opening myself up to criticism by asking for opinions.

Reader Survey

1. How long have you been reading my blog? Do you remember how you found my blog?

2. How often do you visit My Chihuahua Bites?

3. What do you like best about my blog?

4. What do you like the least about my blog?

5. What are your favorite types of posts to read?

6. What type/topic of post will you automatically skip right over? (For example, you hate Memes, or Brain Dumps, or posts about my child…)

7. If you aren’t a regular commenter, can I ask why?

8. Do you watch vlogs?

7. Is there a topic you’d like to see me blog more about?

8. What is more important to you – if a blogger responds to your comment via email, or if the blogger visits your blog and leaves a comment?

That’s it! Feel free to leave me any other helpful suggestions/comments. Smile

Thank you everyone!

Birthday Wish List

The wish list worked pretty well for me for Christmas, so I figured it couldn’t hurt to document my birthday wishes, huh? Dear husband/birthday fairy, are you listening?

Sidenote: have I ever shared that on the first birthday we celebrated as a married couple, my husband got me a salt & pepper shaker as a gift? (I don’t collect salt & peppers shakers, for the record.)

Everybody and their mama has a pair of Toms. I think it is time to jump on the bandwagon, and these glitter shoes will serve me well. A few questions about Toms: where do you order? We don’t have a department store that carries them. Are they true to size? Do you think they are comfortable?

I’d like every color from the China Glaze “Colours From The Capital” collection.

I’d like the Hourglass Veil primer, please.

I think every cook needs the Paula Deen Southern Cooking Bible.

Most of all, I’d like a date night to the restaurant of my choice, my pick of a movie, and to sleep in on my birthday. That sounds PERFECT!

I accept care packages! (Kidding. Kind of. Smile)

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Christmas Recap

Happy Wednesday!

I know this is super overdue, but since this blog is supposed to document my life, I wanted to be sure to blog about Christmas.

We had such a blast celebrating this year. Cooper was at a perfect age to begin to participate in Christmas activities.

Cooper loved Santa. LOVED. We took him to see Santa, and he saw Santa three other times at various events. He’s the only child we know of his age that wasn’t scared. When Santa came to daycare, I’m told he was the only one in his class to run up to Santa and asked to be picked up.

077Terrible pic of a pic

The Elf On The Shelf was a huge hit. Ollie (thanks for the name suggestion, Brandy!) ruled the roost in our household! Cooper would wake up each day, and as soon as we walked downstairs he would start searching for Ollie. As I mentioned here, I think next year I will separate Ollie and the book advent calendar. Cooper was very sad that Ollie left on Christmas Day, and he has asked for him a few times since.

We did pretty good on our Christmas traditions, although there were a few that didn’t get done this year. We did not go see a Christmas musical at church, decorate a gingerbread house, or make a birthday cake for Jesus. (I feel bad about the last one.) Not too shabby!

Now onto the pics!

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My dad’s work threw a children’s Christmas party early in the month. This was the first time Cooper had ever seen Santa, and you can see his reaction. He didn’t quite know what to think, but he perked right up once he realized Santa had a present!

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This year we decided to try something new and see the Lights of the South, which is held at a huge farm. You can walk through or ride on hayrides and see all the lights. It was freezing that night – it really made the whole experience less than enjoyable.

I hosted Christmas Eve this year, and I had about 20 people over for dinner. Cooper had a bit of a meltdown mid present opening and I had to take him upstairs and put him to bed. He refused to take any pictures.

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We attempted to do a White Elephant gift exchange with my family on Christmas Eve, and it was a disaster. My grandparents just didn’t get the point, and people were more concerned with getting a “good” gift than just having fun with the experience. I was really disappointed in the whole thing. Sad smile

My parents spent the night on Christmas Eve so they could be there when Cooper woke up and saw what Santa brought him! He got some good gifts.

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His big gift was the train table, which he has absolutely no interest in. I am hoping he grows into it. All he has done with it so far is destroy the tracks my mom so painstakingly put together.

He does love the Mini Cooper, though!

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Mommy got a new camera lens and this was my first shot. Smile

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I got Jason a Roku, a Dremmel tool thingamabob, the ESPN documentary set 30 For 30, some Elmo pjs, a laptop, some clothes, and a digital picture frame for his office. Funny: I picked up Tim Tebow’s book at Barnes and Noble and didn’t notice until Jason opened it that it was a YOUNG ADULT book! Haha! The pictures should have clued me in.

Jason did so well with my gifts this year! Apparently he took his phone to Sephora, pulled up my wish list, and told the girl to get the items on my list. Yay! Y’all know how happy that makes me. He also got me some cocoa from Williams Sonoma as well as a few stocking stuffers. He said he went to the Apple Store (he shopped on Christmas Eve) to get me an iPad but turned around once he saw the line. Haha!

I know I’m late asking, but how was your Christmas?

Monday, January 16, 2012

2 On Tuesdays: Red Carpet Fashion

Hello friends! Thanks for sticking by me through my absence. I hope you are all ready to dive back in to 2 On Tuesday!

Today’s topic is:

What celebrities do you think have the best red carpet fashion? What celeb’s closet would you like to raid?

Last night was the Golden Globes, and while I don’t really love the award shows themselves, I sure do love the red carpet! Here are a few celebs I think got it right last night.

Source

Source

If I could raid any celeb’s closet, it would be Lauren Conrad’s. I love how classic she always looks, and even though she’s quite a bit younger than me, she isn’t super trendy.

Source

Do you think I could pull off blonde hair? Hmm…

By the way, Lauren and her style team (hair, makeup, nails) had a fab beauty blog with wonderful tutorials and tips. Check it out!

How about you? Don’t forget to link up!

Happy Birthday Cooper!

What a weekend! Y’all, I am very happy to report that I made it through my baby’s second birthday with a minimum of hysterics and tears. I can’t believe I have a 2 year old! Stay tuned for my obligatory “Dear Cooper” post.

I took Friday off work so I could clean the house and prep for Coop’s birthday. Let’s deviate from the topic at hand, shall we? Am I the only one who severely underestimates my time? I had plans that I would get the whole house cleaned while C was at daycare and Jason was at work. Instead, I got the downstairs clean. The problem, Jason says, is that I cannot *just* clean. I have to clean.

There is a difference. Instead of simply wiping down the kitchen counters, washing the dishes, sweeping, and mopping I defrost the freezer, organize the pantry, and bleach the grout in the tile. Sigh. I just can’t simply pick up a room. To me, it isn’t clean unless it is clean. Am I the only one? I wish I was different. Cleaning is a lot of extra work and stress for me, as it is not something I really love to do.

Back to Cooper Bear! Here’s the bear in his birthday gear. Can you guess what his birthday theme was? (And again, by theme I mean cake.)

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Cooper’s sweater and button down are both from Target. His shoes are New Balance and have Grover on the side. You can find them on Ebay!

The cake is from Sam’s Club. It was super cute, but I heard it was a little dry. I was running around and didn’t get to have any, and for whatever reason I haven’t had any since.

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Here we are opening presents! We got Cooper a Schwinn guided tricycle.

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Funny fact: my son shares a birthday with three other family members. My dad, my cousin, and my sister-in-law all have birthdays on January 14th.

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IMG_4884My immediately family – mom & dad, brother’s family, and my family

All in all it was an amazing day! I can’t believe my baby is 2! Time sure does fly, doesn’t it? (And on a TMI note, guess who went #2 in the potty today? Yay Cooper!)

Please check back tomorrow – 2 On Tuesdays will resume! I’ll have it posted by 9:00 p.m. eastern Monday night.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Playing Catch Up

Y’all. I just can’t seem to catch up with life. I feel like a hamster on a wheel that is headed no where. All day long I run and run, yet I never actually get anything accomplished.

Let’s have a brain dump, shall we? There’s lots of stuff I’ve been wanting to share with you, only to store the tidbit of the day in my “things to blog about later” mental file, which I admit leaves my brain within 2 seconds.

Cooper’s birthday is January 14th. As in Saturday. As in one full day away. I thought I was handling this milestone slightly better than his first birthday (after all, I haven’t had any embarrassing meltdowns at Party City this year) yet I spent the last 30 minutes ugly crying in the living room whilst reminiscing over the past year.

Can you guess the theme? And by theme I mean cake, as I have done absolutely nothing else to prepare for his party.

Can we talk about RSVPs? Specifically, the people who don’t bother. YOU SUCK. Seriously. It’s a freaking evite. I couldn’t have made it easier on you. Click yes or no, losers. I don’t even CARE if you don’t come, just freaking RESPOND.

Work has been crazy. I’m super overwhelmed and stressed out, and because I work in the healthcare field, that’s all I’m allowed to say about that. Let’s just say there was an audit, and it did not go well.

Fun times. Not.

Remember when “Not” was the cool response to your friends? “That’s so cool… NOT!” It was almost as awesome as “PSYCH!” Yet no one will ever be as cool as my brother, who used to end his phone conversations with “Appreciate.”

Jason has started a year of school to become a Senior Reactor Operator, also known as the hell in which I don’t have a husband for 52 weeks. I thought military deployments were bad – at least he wasn’t home and therefore I had the freedom to do what I wanted to do, when I wanted to do it. Now I have a small toddler screaming “Daddy! See Daddy!” while my husband holes up in his office, cramming for his weekly exams. I’m left to do the fun stuff, like create meals my toddler will eat and clean the bathroom, while my husband has fun studying four hours a night.

This is made worse still by the fact that my husband is a bit of a whiner, and spends the 30 minutes per day we have with one another talking about how much his life sucks right now. Because I am a good wife (and because this is only week 2 of 52) I smile and nod instead of screaming “THERE ARE STARVING CHILDREN IN NEW GUINEA! IT COULD BE WORSE!” I open my eyes wide and let my thoughts wander while he talks to me about things like atoms and physics and nuclear… oh my god I barely passed geometry PLEASE SHUT UP.

My birthday is January 29th. You know, just in case you wanted to shower me with cards or Edible Arrangements. I’m registered at Sephora. (Kidding. Although how awesome would it be if Sephora had a registry?)

Jason (actually, I bought this for myself but passed it off as a gift for Jason) got a Roku for Christmas, and we’ve been tearing up Netflix. The Twit recommended we watch The Walking Dead, and we’re hooked. I’m ready for February! Y’all know I have a zombie apocalypse plan, and all this zombie fiction is helping me perfect my escape.

I’m doing really well with my goals. So far I’m accomplished… nothing. Wait a minute! I did take down the Christmas decorations last night. Oh wait… the trees themselves are still up, so I guess that doesn’t really count.

Boo.

Tag, you’re it! What’s new with you?

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

52 in 52

I suppose this is where I should apologize for my absence. Perhaps I should offer an explanation? Or maybe I should just be one of those people who waltz in (post) and pretend there never was an absence at all.

Hmm. Y’all, I’m not sorry. Sorrynotsorry, as they say. December was crazy busy, made even more crazy by the fact I was hosting Christmas for the first time ever for an insane amount of people in the new house most of my family has never seen. Y’all can imagine the depths to which my crazy reached. I packed 6 months of home improvement, cleaning, and decorating into just a few weeks.

Yet I still didn’t manage to hang one thing on my walls? And I forgot about the hole my husband and brother knocked into the wall whilst moving furniture? And I made a wonderful olive and appetizer platter and completely forgot to serve it? And my toddler had a wildebeest meltdown during dessert?

Fun times.

Anywhoodles, the holiday recap can wait until later. Because I know most of you have moved on, but I’m sure you’re dying to know how my husband did on the gift giving front this year. (As opposed to years past, when I got NADA and we didn’t speak until after New Year’s.)

I’m copying my girl Shawn and posting my list of 52 things I want to accomplish in 52 weeks.

Don’t be fooled by this list. I’m predicting I wait until Thanksgiving, and then I’ll try to cram 50 of these goals into 4 weeks of pure insanity.

HOME

1. Hang pictures/etc. on the walls.

2. Decorate the dining room. Purchase a new light fixture for the dining room.

3. Paint the downstairs bathroom.

4. Decorate the playroom.

When I showed my husband this list, he laughed at my goals. “Goals? Those aren’t goals. They are to-do lists.” WHATEVER, HUSBAND. I haven’t gotten it done in 6 months so to me it is a goal.

Let’s review how much I procrastinate, shall we? When we first moved in, I painted a swatch of turquoise paint on the downstairs bathroom wall to see if I liked the color. That was in July. That swatch is still in the bathroom. I even purchased the paint and supplies, and I still haven’t moved farther than that swatch.

ORGANIZATION

5. Get craft supplies organized.

6. Get papers/filing organized and keep it that way!

7. Set up a filing & bill paying system.

8. Set up a family calendar.

9. Create a home organization and meal planning binder.

10. Make a running list of pantry/freezer items.

11. Organize/clean garage.

12. Organize the master closet and keep it that way!

13. Do laundry 2x a week. Fold as soon as it comes out of the dryer and put it away.

14. Prepare breakfast/lunches at night.

15. Put together Cooper’s and my outfits each night (including accessories) before I go to bed.

My garage is a place where things go to die. Roaches, ants, and broken electronics are never seen again. It will be a miracle if I pull this one off.

HEALTH/BEAUTY

16. Cook/eat at home at least 5 nights per week.

17. Take breakfast/lunch to work instead of eating out – at least 3-4 days per week.

18. Lose 40 pounds in 2012.

19. Take better care of my skin.

20. Keep my nails painted at all times.

We eat out… a lot. Like a shameful amount of money is spent on eating out. I’m embarrassed to say how much. Which is why my butt looks like cottage cheese, I’m guessing.

I’m getting the wrinkles, y’all. Must avoid old lady lines in forehead.

Jason laughed at #20…. but I feel polished when my nails are polished. (Hah.)

COOPER

21. Organize Cooper’s closet. Put outgrown clothes & shoes in bins.

22. Create a “lesson plan” for Cooper. Focus on one topic per week. Spend time each day on that topic.

23. Do one craft project with Cooper per week.

24. If weather allows, spend time outside with Cooper each day.

25. Do one family activity together per week (park, zoo, Monkey Joe’s, etc).

26. Create a meal plan for Cooper. Introduce new & healthy foods.

27. Create a chore chart for Cooper.

28. Set limits on TV watching for Cooper. Watch 2 shows per day (1 hr of TV).

29. Read a bible story to Cooper each night.

I know #22 sounds like I don’t teach my kid, but I really need to focus more on specific topics to feel like he’s learning something from me.

Coops has turned into quite the picky eater, and I must expand his current palette of fruit snacks and Cliff bars into something slightly healthier.

We have a tendency to hibernate on weekends, so #25 will force us to get out of the house and do something productive as a family.

#28 – Cooper is capable of picking up his toys, filling up the pups food bowl, and helping me unload the silverware out of the dishwasher. I figure this will be a fun way to teach him age-appropriate responsibility.

FINANCES

30. Really work on only buying what I NEED and not what I want.

31. Discuss purchases with Jason.

Jason busted a gut when he read these. “52 goals and only 2 are about money?!” Well, husband, they are an important 2, no?

FAMILY

32. Have a family meeting one time per week to check in and discuss goals/schedule/finances/etc.

33. Do a weekly devotional with Jason.

34. Have one date night (out) per month. Have one date night (in) per week.

35. Take Cooper to visit his great-grandparents at least once a month.

36. Be more “in the moment” when I’m with my family.

37. Do a small act of love/encouragement for Jason per week.

38. Compromise more in my marriage.

#36 – aka put the dang phone down and stop tweeting during family time. The end.

SPIRITUAL

39. Spend time in prayer each day. Pray for others as much as I pray for myself.

40. Join a church!

41. Read a devotional daily.

#39 – I’ve noticed lately my prayers are 90% me and 10% others. Me thinks I need to worry about others as much as I worry about myself. Self, it is not all about you.

BLOG

42. Blog at least 4 times per week.

43. Create a Facebook fan page for my blog.

44. Set aside time each week to return comments. Be better about responding to blog email.

45. Explore ways to monetize my blog.

Are y’all laughing at #44? I promise to try harder!

FRIENDS

46. Send 4 handwritten notes per month to friends.

47. Get involved in some sort of women’s group.

48. Put myself out there when it comes to friendships.

I am so shy when it comes to friendships. Friendships are a little like dating, I think, and it involves making that crucial leap from “we should get together one day!” to “hey, want to go for coffee on Thursday?” I need to work on putting myself out there more when it comes to friendships.

OTHER

49. Take more pictures of Cooper!

50. Create photo books of Cooper’s first and second year.

51. Participate in project 365.

52. Learn to use Picnik.

Y’all, it is sad the amount of pictures I have taken lately of my kid. Poor poor baby. He will have no pictures to document the past 12 months.

Yes, Picnik confuzzles me. Photoshop would really blow my mind, huh?

What are your goals/resolutions in 2012?



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Southern belle, mom of 1, cooker, decorator, crafter, and lover of all things beauty related. Check my About Me tab for more information!

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