Thursday, December 25, 2008

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

The Twelve Days of Christmas

Day Twelve:
Read the story of Jesus' birth.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

The Twelve Days of Christmas

Day Eleven:
Pray for Soldiers who are away from their families this Christmas.

Monday, December 22, 2008

The Twelve Days of Christmas

Day Ten:
Eat dinner by candlelight and sing Christmas carols around the tree.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

The Twelve Days of Christmas

Day Nine:
Give money to a Bell Ringer.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

The Twelve Days of Christmas

Day Eight:
Take a Christmas light drive.

Friday, December 19, 2008

The Twelve Days of Christmas

Day Seven:
Make a Christmas Ornament.

SNOWMAN ORNAMENTS


Materials:

Clear glass ornaments
white acrylic paint
Infant or toddler socks (depending on the size of the ornaments)
black Sharpie marker
assorted small buttons
small jingle bells
ribbon
hot glue gun
scissors

Directions:

Remove gold hanger from top of ornaments. Put small amount of paint inside ornament. Cover hole and shake until completely covered inside. (You may need to add more paint for complete coverage. Allow to dry - this may take several days.

Replace gold hangers. Place socks onto ornaments to form the "hat". You want the hat lower in the back and higher over the "face." Hot glue hat into place. Tie ribbon over the sock where the gold hanger is (you can feel this through the sock). Include a jingle bell in your knot (or other small charm). This forms the top of the hat. Cut off 1-1.5" off the toe end of the sock. (Leave enough to form tassels). Make the tassels for the "hat" by cutting down the length of the sock. Cut the sock in half vertically, making sure you don't cut past the hanger. Then rotate and cut sock in half the other way, ending up with 4 large pieces. Cut each piece into equal strips, making the tassel. Don't cut the strips too thin or they will break.
Using the Sharpie, draw eyes and mouth, leaving enough room for your button nose. Attach button nose with a dot of hot glue.

REINDEER LIGHT BULB ORNAMENTS



Materials:

1 or 2 burnt out light bulbs
1 can brown spray paint (I used suede paint found at Canadian tire store)
1 cozy bottle of dark brown acrylic paint
1 2oz bottle red paint
1 2oz bottle white paint
1 2oz bottle black paint
1 black permanent marker (Found at any business supply store or department stores)
2 plastic spoons-for ears
1 piece of your choice colour home spun material
1 piece of your choice colour fleece.
glue and glue gun
Paint brush (all paints, paint brushes and material can be found at your local craft store or department store )
Pencil
Paper towel
Arleens fake snow (Wal-Mart)
Thread for hanging ornament
Sealer... I get mine at Wal-Mart. Joanne's sealer is great but you could use Modpog too.

Directions:

First thing to do is to make sure light bulbs are clean. Soap and water and a quick scrub. Dry thoroughly.

Next, spray paint the light bulbs. Take these outside or do in a WELL VENTILATED room. Do one coat let dry (follow instructions on can for drying) and do one more coat again, let dry.

Next, draw on eyes and nose and mouth with a pencil. (You can refer to my picture for placement.) Paint eyes with black paint and let dry. Next paint on nose in a oval shape. Let dry. Draw on mouth with permanent marker. Now add a circle of brown paint to the middle of the eye area. Let dry.

Next add highlights with white paint to eyes and nose and a small line of white around mouth. (Refer to picture.) Now take the red paint and adding the smallest amount of paint ever to your bush and now brushing that paint off your brush onto a paper towel (you will see why soon, hehe) brush on your cheeks going in a circular motion. Do this until the desired affect is achieved. (This is called "Dry Brushing.) Your brush has paint on it but it should be dry to the touch and you keep working your brush in circular motion to get what you want the cheeks to look like. Sounds hard but really it isn't. Practice is the key. Now add white dots to the cheeks for high lights. Let dry.

When you have your deer done let dry for an hour or so and then seal with your sealer. I use 3 coats to be on the safe side. Please remember to let dry in between coats. Read label for drying instructions on your sealer can.

When all is painted and dry and sealed this is the time to get creative. Any kind of fleece can be used for the hat. Cut a piece of fleece that completely covers the top of the deer (the ribbed part of the light bulb.) A long pointed top almost in the shape of a triangle. Glue this with glue gun to the top of light bulb. Cut off any pieces to make it fit. Careful not to burn fingers with the hot glue!

Next cut a strip of fleece approx. 1-inch wide and runs the length of the rim of hat (make sure you leave room for the ears as well). This will be glued down to form hat rim. Before you glue this down cut your plastic spoons for ears. Position them where you think they should go (refer to photo) and then add rim and glue down. Now add the band of fleece around the rim and glue firmly into place.

I have used Arleen's fake snow on top of hat but you can use any decoration that comes to mind here. Holly, birds, snow, anything, let your imagination run wild. :o)

To hang ornament I just ran a piece of thread in the top of hat and hung on tree.

For sleeping (female deer) I tied a piece of homespun around top of bulb into a bow. Glue this down. I also gave her some hair at the top of her head. Using brown paint and highlights before adding ribbon.


Thursday, December 18, 2008

The Twelve Days of Christmas

Day Six:
Have your picture made with Santa Claus.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The Twelve Days of Christmas

Day Five:
Make a Christmas Bird Feeder.

What you'll need:

  • Pine cone
  • Paper plate
  • Butter knife
  • Smooth peanut butter
  • Birdseed
  • Ribbon or yarn
  • Scissors

How to make it:

  1. Cut a long length of yarn or ribbon to hang the bird feeder.
  2. Tie the ribbon in a knot around the pine cone near the top (about 3 sections down).
  3. Tie a knot in the end of the ribbon.
  4. Use the knife to get a large clump of peanut butter on the paper plate.
  5. Use the knife to spread peanut butter inside the pine cone and around the edges.
  6. Sprinkle the birdseed over the pine cone.
  7. Roll the pine cone in the birdseed that is on the plate.
  8. Hang the bird feeder on the tree.
  9. Enjoy watching the birds eat their treat!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Monday, December 15, 2008

The Twelve Days of Christmas

Day Three:
Bake Christmas Cookies.


Snickerdoodles:

INGREDIENTS
  • 1 cup shortening
  • 1 1/2 cups white sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons cream of tartar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons white sugar
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
  2. In a medium bowl, cream together the shortening and 1 1/2 cups sugar. Stir in the eggs. Sift together the flour, baking soda, cream of tartar, and salt; stir into the creamed mixture until well blended. In a small bowl, stir together the 2 tablespoons of sugar, and the cinnamon. Roll dough into walnut sized balls, then roll the balls in the cinnamon-sugar. Place them onto an unprepared cookie sheet, two inches apart.
  3. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes in the preheated oven. Edges should be slightly brown. Remove from sheets to cool on wire racks.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

The Twelve Days of Christmas

Day Two:
Make a Christmas Wish List.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

The Twelve Days of Christmas

In honor of the Christmas Holiday I am sharing some activities to help you and your family get into the Christmas spirit. Found these cute ideas on a kid's calendar...please check back daily for fun and inspirational ideas.

Day One:

Make a paper chain of family blessings.


HOW TO:
Cut out 12 strips of construction paper in Christmas colors. To start, write something your family is thankful for on each strip. Staple or glue it into a loop. Each day, add one link to the chain. On Christmas day, review your family's blessings before opening presents.

Friday, December 12, 2008

My Favorite Things - Christmas Songs Edition


1. Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree by Brenda Lee
2. White Christmas by Bing Crosby
3. Baby, It's Cold Outside by Louis Armstrong & Ella Fitzgerald
4. It's a Marshmellow World by Dean Martin
5. My Favorite Things by Rod Stewart
6. Have a Holly Jolly Christmas by Burl Ives
7. O Holy Night by Celine Dion
8. Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas by Judy Garland
9. Let It Snow by Michael Buble
10. The Christmas Song by Mel Torme
11. I'll Be Home for Christmas by Frank Sinatra
12. Sleigh Ride by Johnny Mathis
13. Walking in a Winter Wonderland by Anyone
14. Please Come Home for Christmas by The Eagles
15. The Charlie Brown Christmas Song by Vincent Guaraldi

Thursday, December 11, 2008

My Favorite Things - Christmas Movie Edition

Mickey's Christmas Carol









I also love to watch Beauty and the Beast and Little Women this time of year. They aren't technically Christmas movies, but they sure do feel like it to me.

Note: I am going to see Four Christmases this weekend and have a feeling it may be moving it's way onto this list.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Our Amazing God

Some of you may have noticed the prayer request we had listed for Ben's brother on the right column of our blog. I have been meaning to blog about this to fill everyone in once we got all the details. Below are a couple of emails from my me and my husband. The first one went out the day we got the bad news and the last one one went out today....they pretty much sum up the roller coaster we have been on the past week. Thank you so much for all your prayers!

Prayer request!!
11/24/08 at 3:28pm from Ben

I wanted to let you all know about a situation with my family. I found out on Friday that there is a chance that my brother, Steve, may have cancer. Steve has had a lump above his hip for some time. His family doctor has known about it and was not concerned. But recently his legs started falling asleep for no reason, so he went to see an orthopedist. The orthopedist was extremely concerned about the lump and rushed him into an oncologist. They are doing a procedure Tuesday (tomorrow - 11/25/08) to find out if it is cancer. The concern is very high and radiation and chemo are already being discussed. PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE be in prayer about this. We have been praying for Steve for several months as well, because he and my sister-in-law Anna are also in the process of adopting a little girl from Ethiopia. I know that God has huge plans for Steve and his family. Thanks in advance for all your prayers!!

Update on Steve
sent yesterday by Me

I wasn’t sure if my text came through to all of you or not. I wanted to let you all know we found out Wednesday that Steve does have cancer. He has a sarcoma in his lower abdomen that is the size of a soft ball. More than likely he will be traveling to MD Anderson in Houston for treatment. They specialize in this type of cancer. Thank you all for continuing to pray for our family. We know there is a rough road ahead but we are prepared to let God carry us through it.


Hey everyone,

First off, I need to say thank you to everyone who has been praying for my brother Steve. You can never know how much your prayers & concerns for him and the rest of our family has meant to us. And to see that our prayers have now been answered, now gives us even more cause to rejoice!!

My brother had an appointment this morning with his oncologist to go over the treatment plan, and course of options for the cancer they discovered last week. Steve said that he and Anna were in the doctors's office waiting when he came in with a giant smile on his face. The doctor told them that it was very rare that he got the opportunity to tell anyone in their position any type of good news, but that that was all he had for them. He told them that after a detailed diagnosis the mass they discovered is NOT CANCER!! The mass is instead a benign tumor that is attached to a nerve, known as a Schwannoma. And that while it will still require surgery to remove, there is no cancerous growth associated with it. They have told him that the tumor and its removal will likely mean that the minor pain he has been having in his left leg associated with the nerve damage may become a permanent issue, but that it is not in any way life-threatening.

This is such an answer to our prayers that I personally do not know how to respond, but to again say Thank You. We serve an awesome & powerful God, who cares for us & listens to us. I know that your prayers for Steve and God's unending love for us is what caused this. We prayed for a miracle & that is what God has given us. The doctor told Steve that the preliminary diagnosis they received is correct approximately 98% of the time. And that the cancer they thought this was, even with treatment, would likely have given him only 2 years to live. Today I am thankful that our God doesn't care about percents or possibilities, for IN HIM, ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE. As you continue to pray, offer up Thanks from us.

GRIZ

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

The Happiest Place on Earth

I am not talking about Disney World, but Aldi rather. That's right - the grocery store. I just stopped by to get sweet potatoes and walked out spending $1.50 (including tax) for 6 lbs! They had 3 lb bags for $.69/each. I kept looking at the sign thinking that surely they meant $.69/lb. What a deal! If you need any last minutes items for your Turkey Day feast you might stop on by there and pick them up. With all the money you will save you can take a trip to Disney World!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

My Favorite Things

1. Tostitos Gold. The only kind of tortilla chips I buy.


2. Tomatillos. I love them in salsa, enchiladas and sauces. A couple of weekends ago I made a chili using tomatillos instead of tomatoes. It was quite delightful.

3. Christmas Music on Magic 96.5. It's Christmas music non-stop from now until the end of the year. What's not to love about that?

4. The Soup. It comes on E! on Friday nights. We DVR it and watch it first thing Saturday morning. Before Game Day comes on, of course.


5. Aquafresh Extreme Clean toothpaste. I love the flavor and the amazing foaming action!
6. Pandora. Thank you Laura and Mom for telling me about this. I love the commercial-free mix of music that is personalized to my taste!

7. Planters Daybreak Blend Granola. I especially enjoy the apple cinnamon mix. It has dried apples and cranberries, granola and almonds. Pretty filling for such a small bag.


8. Holiday Egg Nog Coffee from World Market. Really yummy. Goes great with a bag of Breakfast blend granola.

9. Sally Hansen Wax Strips. To save money I wax my own eyebrows as much as possible. From time to time I will let them grow back in and go get them professionally shaped. But in between visits to the salon, these work great!


10. Christmas Shopping.
Need I explain?

Friday, October 31, 2008

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

My Favorite Things

  1. Ghost Town. We saw this movie weeks ago and I have been meaning to post about it ever since. It might not even be in theatres anymore. However, it was really funny and cute. We ended up seeing it as a compromise decision (read: He wanted to see a boy movie and I wanted to see a cartoon so we compromised on something neither of us wanted to see) and it ended up being a great choice!

  2. Ear Plugs. Life changing. I now sleep all night long. I was always aware I am a really light sleeper but never realized how much I wake up during the night because of little noises. I now fall asleep to the sound of my own breathing. Which by the way, is as relaxing as listening to the ocean.

  3. Scotch Brite Dish Cleaning Wand. I use these not only on my dishes, but also on my bathtubs. I keep one in each bathroom so I can scrub the shower clean without messing up my manicure. These wands are magical!




  4. Little Debbie Pumpkin Cakes. You can only find them this time of year so I stock up as much as possible. I have pretty much hit my quota for the year already.

  5. Pureology. I am a firm believer in cheap shampoo - well cheap anything actually. But this stuff really is a great, so I allow myself to splurge from time to time. Last time I got my hair done I skipped the trim (trying to grow out my hair) and bought the hydrating shampoo and conditioner set instead. It tames my frizzies well!

  6. Maroon 5 concert. This entry shows how far behind I am in blogging. We saw them a month ago. It was a great show. Might be my favorite concert so far and that is saying a lot. It was at the Oak Mountain Amphitheater and the weather was perfect. Combine that with Adam Levine and you have a perfect combination.

  7. WWMM Live 100.5. Another entry I have been meaning to tell everyone about for some time now. Finally an alternative radio station in Birmingham!

  8. New Church Cookbook. Are there better recipes found anywhere else? I don't think so.

  9. Harry Potter. I totally used to be one of those people who made fun of Harry Potter readers that were over the age of 12. But I am now on the sixth book and can't get enough!

  10. Halloween. My favorite holiday. Nuff said.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

The King of the Dead

Elvis has still got it! Forbes.com just proved it (although there was never any doubt in my mind).

Presley's estate earned $52 million in the past year, again leading Forbes' annual list of top-earning departed celebrities. Heath Ledger and Paul Newman also had good years -- financially, anyway.

By Forbes.com

"Night of the Living Dead" may be a Halloween cult classic, but every October, Forbes.com turns it around and takes a look at how the dead make a living.

While things might be topsy-turvy in the financial markets above ground, there's still a bull market in the boneyard. The 13 famous people on our list of top-earning dead celebrities drew a combined $194 million over the past 12 months.

Topping the list for the second year running is the king of rock 'n' roll, Elvis Presley. Without so much as lifting a finger, the Memphis Flash earned a whopping $52 million in the past year. That's more than some of the music industry's biggest living acts command. For example, Justin Timberlake pulled in $44 million last year, and Madonna earned $40 million.

The 30th anniversary of Presley's death helped boost attendance and merchandise sales last year at Graceland, his home in Memphis, Tenn. New ventures such as an Elvis Sirius Satellite Radio show add to a long list of publishing and licensing deals.

Some new faces

Debuting on the list, in third place, is Australian actor Heath Ledger, most famous for his role as the Joker in "The Dark Knight," the latest installment in the Batman movie franchise. At the time of his overdose in January, the 28-year-old star seemed poised on the cusp of an extremely lucrative film career.

Ledger had reportedly secured a deal for his role in "Knight" that included merchandising (think Joker action figures) and a percentage of film revenue. With the film grossing $991 million in box-office revenue worldwide, we estimate his earnings at $20 million.

Also debuting on our list is Paul Newman, who died in September at age 83. His Newman's Own line of salad dressings, organic popcorn and spaghetti sauces had sales of more $120 million last year. When he was alive, Newman donated all of his profits from the venture to charity, and his estate plans to continue doing so. With the residuals from a lifetime of high-profile movie roles, and we calculate Newman earned $5 million last year.

Some ghoulish math

Adding up paychecks of dead celebrities can be a wicked task -- after all, the departed don't exactly sit for interviews. To get to the bottom line, we talked to experts and sources inside their estates and dug up gross earnings -- before taxes, management fees and other costs -- between October 2007 and October 2008.

Some celebrities, such as Charles Schulz and Albert Einstein, are staples on our list. They owe their spots to steady revenue streams from their artistic creations (planning to watch "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown" again this Halloween?) and licensing of their names and images (the Baby Einstein brand is expanding to the young-adult market this year). But finding other big earners meant scouring the cemetery for posthumous one-hit wonders.


**Thanks for sharing this article with me, Amanda Brooke!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

The Paper Nest Blog

I'm working on a blog just for my creations. Hopefully, this blog will grow into much more as I consider making this more of a business venture than a hobby. Keep checking back for more details.

Click on link below to get a peak...

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Half Man, Half Tree

Has anyone seen this? It is tragic. We watched a special on this man on TLC the other night. He has a rare disease that is causing enormous warts to take over his body. And I complain about my headaches...I can't even imagine!

WARNING: Not for weak stomachs.

Friday, October 17, 2008

The Paper Nest - Invites

Having lots of fun designing invitations and the like...



Tuesday, October 14, 2008

I've Been Tagged

Shannon tagged me, so I guess it's my turn to answer some questions and pass on the fun...

10 years ago I:
1. had just gotten my driver's license.
2. didn't know the Lord.
3. had no idea that I would end up in Birmingham, AL.
4. wanted to be a psychologist.
5. like most teenagers, didn't appreciate my family.

5 things on today's "to do" list:
1. Go to dinner with some girlfriends.
2. Order Christmas tickets for the Sonshiners to see White Christmas.
3. Fold the 2 loads of laundry that are sitting on top of my washer and dryer.
4. Buy a 3 baby presents - all for boys.
5. Plan my Supper Club Halloween Party menu.

5 snacks I enjoy:
1. Chips and Salsa (not from a jar)
2. Cream cheese and olives.
3. Little Debbie Pumpkin cakes.
4. Hot chocolate.
5. Candy Corn flavor Kisses. Sounds gross, but they are so good!

5 things I would do if I were a millionaire:
1. Move to the mountains.
2. Buy Ben a new car.
3. Donate to church/charity.
4. Adopt a slew of kids.
5. Quit job and raise as many children as I could house.

5 places I have lived:
1. Gallipolis, OH
2. Proctorville, OH
3. Barboursville, WV
4. Lancaster, OH
5. Birmingham, AL

5 jobs I have had:
1. Babysitter
2. Pharmaceutical Technician
3. Doctor's Assistant
4. Nanny
5. Ministry Assistant

I tag: anyone that reads this and wants to do one of their own!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

My Favorite Things - Birmingham Restaurant Edition

Birmingham is a great city for a foodie like me. I love all the little restaurants around town that are reasonably priced, have delicious food and great atmosphere. Here are my top 10 favorite places to eat on any given date night:
  1. Bottega's Cafe. Pretty much any Frank Stitt eatery will do the trick for me, but this one is extra special to me as it is the Official Restaurant of Supper Club. Must try: Chicken Scallopine.
  2. Leonardo's. I am generally not a fan of Italian fare, but this place is superb. Good food and a piano bar! Must try: Lobster Ravioli
  3. Surin. Any of their locations will do. Best sushi in town. Pretty good martinis too! Must try: Spicy Coconut Soup & Super Crunch.
  4. Iguanas. Anyone who knows me at all knows that Mexican food is my all time favorite comfort food. It is not hard to please me when it comes to this type of cuisine. But the atmosphere at this place is incredible and the prices are great. Must try: Burrito al carbon.
  5. Chez Fonfon. Another Frank Stitt restaurant. This is where Ben and I had our first date and where he took me the night he proposed a mere 9 months later. Must try: Croque Monsieur & Coconut cake.
  6. O' Carr's. Fantastic little place with a real cafe feel. Best chicken salad in town. Must try: the chicken salad, obviously!
  7. Davenport's. A Birmingham landmark. No better pizza can be found and their salad is just as good. Must try: Pizza and their homemade Italian dressing.
  8. Rojo. A funky little joint on the Southside. Must try: Quesadillas and guacamole.
  9. Taco Casa. If I am honestly trying to represent all sorts of fares and atmospheres fast food must be included. Actually, even if I didn't include fast food I couldn't make a favorite restaurant list with out listing the Casa. Must try: Combination burrito (mild) add jalapenos and sour cream. Also, best ice in town.
  10. Momma Goldberg's. Our friends Maghan & Hal Craig are actually part owner of this place. A great place to go for lunch! Must try: Nachos.
Honorable Mentions:
Jim 'N Nick's. Not a fan of chains, but this one is local so I don't think that counts. Must try: Pimiento Cheese Sandwich.
Jackson's. In Soho. I don't think there is a bad choice on the menu. Must try: Pasta Alredeaux

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Sista, Sista!

My Sister is a blogger now too!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Catching up...

Sorry I have been out of pocket for so long. I now feel guilty for all the nasty things I have said to my not-so-up-to-date blogging friends. I have finally seen what it is like to have a life outside of the blog world. My apologies...

I am proud to announce that my baby sister, Jodie, has earned an internship with the Big Ten Network. This was no easy feat to accomplish and we are so proud of her! Way to go, Sister! Show those Big Ten guys how it's done! Go Buckeyes!Also, I designed a blog for Rachael Hamilton. Rachael is best friends with my friends Cortney and Jessa. They sent her to me and I appreciate them so much! Rachael just had a baby boy, Jackson a couple of months ago. He is precious....check out photos on her blog!


Now, I may be called a bragger, but if I am seriously going to catch you up on my life, I cannot sign off without telling you about my newest joy - my washer and dryer! We had been running on a decades old set since we got married. A set that was very generously donated to us by Camron and Martina and was very much appreciated! But unfortunately the washer died a couple of weeks ago and had to be replaced. We decided that since we were going to have to purchase a replacement, we might as well invest in a set that would last us another couple of decades. After much deliberation between brands and ratings and A WHOLE LOT of price comparing - we finally settled on a set and now I can't stop doing laundry! I have even washed clean clothes when I ran out of dirty clothes! I never would have thought I would be so excited about laundry!

Friday, September 5, 2008

My Favorite Things

**Please forgive the absence of photos.

1. Iced Mochas. Recently I have been getting BK's Mocha Iced Coffee, but I have a feeling I won't be meeting an iced coffee I don't like anytime soon.

2. Divine Design. Candice Olsen is the god of Design. I want to BE her. Check her out on HGTV (due to being spoiled by the DVR I am unable to tell you the time or day it comes on) but I am sure you can find it on your local listing.

3. Long weekends. Is there anything like a long weekend? It seems like "normal" weekends fly by. By the time you spend Saturday cleaning, going to the grocery, and running errands you wake up early Sunday morning to head to church, out to eat with your favorite members, home to let your husband study his stack of accounting books and then out again for some awesome fellowship with the best CORE Group in the world. Next thing you know - the weekend is over. Sigh. When were we supposed to relax? Long weekends afford you that much needed extra day to just catch your breath.

4. A clean house. It has been said that I am OCD, I am fine with that. It is true that I get my kicks out of knowing that every can in my pantry is lined up and facing the same direction. This weekend my excellent husband helped me to clean all those hard-to-reach-areas. Cabinets emptied and wiped out? Check. Drapes took down and vacuumed? Check. Baseboards scrubbed? Check. Well you get the picture. My Dad said I might have taken to title Labor Day a bit to literally. Nah.

5. Blurb.com. It is an extension of Google's many useful websites. You can take your blogs and make books out of them. Or just do like I did and insert your own photos and captions to make a lazy person's version of a scrapbook. I made a book of our wedding day for our First Anniversary (it is the paper anniversary, after all) and have been meaning to blog about it for months now. Check out their website for some ideas of your own.

6. Buckle jeans. For some reason, I had never shopped in this store. Even after my sister worked there for several summer and Christmas holidays during college. Just never felt like it was my style. But this weekend my super preppy husband decided to take a peak at some of their shoes and t-shirts (he kept waiting to hear them say, "Are you shopping for your grandson, Grandpa?") and we ended up shopping in there for like 2 hours (their sales people are obviously commission based and kept tossing additional items over or dressing room doors to try on). I digress. My point is that their jeans are amazing! I think I tried on a pair of Big Stars (or something like that) and Ben tried on several pair. The best part is that they do free alterations! Who knew?!

7. Ultra-slim flocked hangers. They give you so much more room in your closet, don't tangle up with one another and everything stays on them! Changed my life.

8. Alabama wins. Beating a top 10 team is always a great way to start (or end) my week!

9. Night Light by Dr. & Mrs. James Dobson. A devotional for couples that contains six months of daily devotions about communication, money, forgiveness, conflict resolution, etc. Scripture, probing questions, and short anecdotes encourage intimacy between couples in an attempt to ward off stagnation and habitual laziness in spiritual growth. We have enjoyed every minute of it and look forward to our time of prayer and discussion every night. This was a wedding gift from my sweet friend, Sylvia. Thanks, Sylvia Grace. We love it!

10. Date night. Fridays nights are date nights for us. We usually just go out to eat and come home to a movie. It's just nice hang out and talk and relax together. With our busy schedules (and by our's, I mean Ben's) it is nice to know that we always have a set time for us to reconnect. Tonight we have company for date night - Jon Kelley. He is one of my most favorite kids in the world and one of the only people I would let crash our date. Can't wait!

Friday, August 29, 2008

My Favorite Things

1. Brightly colored painted furniture. I now have the urge to paint all the furniture in my house.


























2. Birdhouse Jewelry Organizer. Found this on Urban Outfitters website. Went to the store to buy it and they didn't have any. I am apprehensive about ordering it, but contemplating it nonetheless.

3. Francesca's. A little accessories and gift boutique at the Summit. Always my first stop when I need a little something to spice up an outfit.

4. Open Windows. I love opening up the house and letting the fresh air in. So glad the temps have cooled enough to do just that.

5. Netflix. I have mentioned before that Ben and I both love to snuggle up with a good movie. We love Netflix because we don't have to take the movie back and it keeps a list of all the movies we want to see and sends us the next one in queue. In a word, convenient.

6. Morning Coffee - I love my java in the morning. The caffeine is needed, but the aroma is oh-so-pleasing.

7. Cheesecake Factory Ranch Dressing. They sell it by the jar now! Today for lunch, I made my own version of one of their salads and it was delicious!

8. Spinach Pasta. Amanda Brooke made it for us at Supper Club last night. I am not a fan of whole-wheat pastas, so I was leary. But let me tell you something - it was better than regular pasta! Popeye would be proud.

9. Busy at work. No more boring days at work. With my new "position" at work I am staying super-busy. Which is great, the days fly by and I feel a sense of accomplishment at the end of the day. The only downfall is that The Happy Wife blog is suffering - as I am sure you have noticed. Please accept my apologies.

10. Football season! It has officially begun. Let me get one good Roll Tide and Go Bucks out there before I sign off...have a great holiday weekend, y'all!