Happy New Year!

One of my favorite things is New Years Resolutions. I love lists, and a list for the whole year always helps me commit. I usually see changes come from my New Years Resolutions lists. And I’m ready for some serious change! I’ve been thinking a lot the past month about what’s important for me to accomplish, and what I want to change about myself. I found a great article that included many of the ideas that have been circling around in my head. You can link to it here http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/marcia-sirota/new-years-resolutions_b_1166042.html. The whole list is great, but certain ones I want to stop..

Avoidance – Come take a little gander through my house. Unfinished projects everywhere. And while I have gotten much better at finishing what I start, I am not going to start anymore projects until all my unfinished, or broken projects are complete.

Having a Bad Attitude – It may just be that I’m three months pregnant, but I need to focus everyday on having a good attitude, and appreciating the moment.

Complaining – Kinda the same thing. But I’m healthy, I have a great family, my husband is a hottie, we have a home, a great neighborhood and family.. what do I really have to complain about?

Gossiping – I’ve already been trying to stop, but I have to admit.. The other night I really wanted to tell a friend something that had happened earlier that day. It was a story about an acquaintance, and it wouldn’t be a story I’d really want shared about me. It wasn’t horrible, it wasn’t untrue, but it wasn’t nice. That’s one of the first times I’ve really felt myself talking myself out of it questioning myself what good it would do. I really did feel proud to stop myself, and maybe a little more grown up.

Co-Dependency – I have been thinking a lot about if I could provide for three kids if something were ever to happen to Jesse. I don’t work, and I never finished college.. Time to step up and make sure I could take care of my family if needed. That’s my biggest goal this year. Plus.. I would love to be able to buy Jess surprises without him knowing I spent the money first.

Those are some of the ideas from the article.. Here are some of my personal thoughts..

Be a better mom – Have more fun with the things that already should be done.. Have my kids help cook.. Do more art projects with my kids.. take them new places.. take more pictures.. Be patient.. my kids are pretty sweet and they’re growing quick. Blog more about them.

Be a better cook – Jess has me beat on this one.. I know it’s in my genes (from Grandma Shirley.. not Donna), I just need to give it the effort.

Get better at the things I love – Photography, Writing, Painting, and singing. I want to improve all these things in the next year.

Get Organized – I’m going to start by throwing stuff out.

Budget – Waste less, Save more.

Jess & Me- Go out more.. but different restaurants and different things than movies. I love my date nights.

And of course, Blog more of what I’m up to. I’m really going to try.

Curious.. am I the only one who loves New Years Resolutions?

Our Grateful Tree

I am always a sucker for a tree branch craft, so imagine how much I love a Thanksgiving grateful tree. For FHE this last Monday, I tried to get the kids to really think about the things that we are grateful for. It took some work for them to be serious, but they really loved writing and drawing (or telling me what to write) and then placing them on the tree.

For this tree, I just snapped off a piece from my tree in the back yard and spray painted it white. Instead of cut out leaves, I just did circles.. because I already had them.

One of my favorite parts of the activity was asking the kids to name something Dad is grateful for. It was pretty funny to hear what they see as Dad’s favorite things.. the gym, football, beef? Bentley said beef.. she’s on this weird beef kick.. She wrote “I love beef” on my foot the other night…

Some of my favorites from the tree:

pie-bentley

 

netflix-bentley

 

cars-bauer

 

definitely lemonade and definitely toast-bauer

 

 

Happy Halloween!

Yikes that’s a bird-tastic crew. My little Bauer has never willingly dressed up for Halloween (he’s only three.. but still). In September, I started asking him about what he would like to be. I gave him all kinds of suggestions that I thought would appeal to him including cars, trains, spongebob, etc. He turned me down to all of them. Out of nowhere a few days later, he said to me “Mom. I know what I want to be. A big, red angry bird.” I laughed thinking how funny it was for him to come up with that. Somehow, one turned into four (plus two other misc costumes I had already made) and boom. Look at Aunt Sharon as mad a bird as could be.

Free Halloween Clip Art

Halloween is on my mind! I have found so many awesome free printables, and wanted to share. These are all coming from different places, there’s so much talent out there!


http://www.howdoesshe.com/free-exclusive-halloween-printables


These guys are giving away 20 free printables! And they’re all very cute.
http://www.tipjunkie.com/free-halloween-printables/

http://papercrave.com/free-printable-halloween-goodies-part-1/

http://www.i-do-it-yourself.com/category/freebies-downloads/page/8/

http://www.southernaccentblog.com/2011/09/never-too-early-free-halloween.html

And last but not least, an adorable vintage alphabet. Not for Halloween, but I couldn’t control myself and I had to lump it in with the group.

Wishing you a happy Autumn!

to a sPaRkLy juLy: music mix

I always have to make my music mixes for different occasions.. and it doesn’t take much for something to be an “occasion” for me. I thought I’d share my July mix with ya.. and if ya like it, let me know and I’ll keep sharing different mixes. If you don’t like my sweet Indie/Pop/Oldies taste then I apologize.. but not really.

For me, a July mix should be summer nights and summer drives fun that you can see yourself listening to while you watch fireworks and eat salt water taffy..

Hope you enjoy!


Get a playlist! Standalone player Get Ringtones

Come back tomorrow to see my oh-so-cute 4th of July goody bags!

FaTheRs DaY

Here’s a little example of the differences between Jesse, my husband, and Me.

Me: I wanna get you an Ipad for Fathers’ Day. You deserve something nice, let me spoil you, pleeease?
Jesse: You going and spending money that I’m just going to have to earn back is not my idea of being spoiled.

Plan B. Actually, plan E…F? I always dream of surprising Jess with something unexpected.. but my plans never really pan out. My biggest dream? To one day surprise him with a big giant truck with some 4-wheelers in tow. Seriously.. I think about it all the time. Now… where do I get and then hide the 60,000 dollars to do so? Since I didn’t quite reach my goal and lavishly surprise him, I had to go looking for some other ideas. And when I’m looking for ideas, I always look to my hero, Marth, first..

How cute is this? Bentley is my little artist, so she would love to give this.. and I think it would be something Jesse would use.
I always love a full basket of goodies. And once again.. practical. This guy might come from me..


On Martha’s website, you can print off these labels. Count me in. I love you, Martha.

I also thought about some personalized gifts for my daddy-o, Big Bad Bruce.. I found this artwork on Etsy from sodapopcorleone. This may blow your mind for a sec, but there isn’t a lot of Tab soda gifts out there. My dad drinks it like crazy, and yes… they still make it. And no, I don’t think he’s the ONLY one who still drinks it. He could be, who knows. Here’s something I didn’t know until a year or two ago.. Tab was originally marketed as a woman’s diet drink.. pink can? Tab fact. My dad wears womenswal-mart shape up’s too. He’s a complicated person to shop for.

My dad loves his tractor. He’s always out working on it.. ordering things for it.. but never really using it? I plugged in “tractor” to Etsy and found this guy amongst thousands of kiddie tractor things. I don’t see my brother or sister spending this kind of time looking for the perfect gift. And I’m the least fav?

Now for the Husband of mine who wishes he were raised on the Jersey Shore.. I thought what would be better than a Pauly D pendant? It would go perfectly with the dog tags he often wears, possibly on the same chain. You may think I’m kidding, but my husband would be stoked. Wish I would’ve thought of it in time!
Look at that stare. Right into your soul.

Last, but defintely not least comes the plaque that I know Jess would love. It’s lyrics from one of his favorite shows. Also found on Etsy, from luciusart.. again. Wishing I would have gone diggin‘ sooner!


Happy Father’s Day to all the amazing Daddy-o’s in my life! I’m so happy my kids have such a great dad!

Leprechaun Treasure Hunt

Happy St. Patrick’s Day! I love to leave my kids a green goody basket from their personal leprechaun, Leroy.. but you know I’m gonna make them work for it. These are the clues that I wrote, and I thought I would share if anyone wants to start their own St. Patrick’s Day tradition.

When I wrote this out, I tried to keep it general enough that anyone should be able to use it. I print my clues on green (white this year, with green ribbon…it was kinda last minute) paper and tape them in their hiding spots. I usually throw tinsel or glitter around where the leprechaun has been.

Your clues will hide like this:

1. leave out in the open
2. under the couch
3. in the fridge
4. dining table
5. bathtub/shower
6. t.v.
7. in their closet-since I have two little ones, I will put
their surprises in their own closet.
Who knows? Maybe Leroy will visit my husband, too. If he’s lucky.

I wrote these for younger kids, they shouldn’t be too hard for them to figure out…

***

1
To my lil’ lads and lassies I say hello!
I am a wee lil’ leprechaun from the rainbow.
To find your St. Patty’s Day treasure, I have left you some clues.
Look under the couch for something green-me favorite color, it’s true!
2
To find clue number three, you won’t have to look far.
Just think of a place where all your green veggies are.
It’s full of good things to eat, and it’s so very cold.
But it can get stinky inside if things start to mold!
3
You’re on your way to finding your own gold.
Now be good lads and lassies and do as you’re told!
You’ve just taken a trip to the refrigerator.
Now go look around where you’ll eat dinner later.

4
Tis a magical four-leaf-clover kind of lucky day!
You’re getting closer to your treasure; alas! halfway!
You’re wee lil’ ones often stinky, or covered in mud.
Look where you go to get clean with bubbly soap suds.

5
Oh holy shamrock! You’re a great treasure hunter!
Hiding clues is lots of work-you’re aware I’m quite miniature.
Look next in a place where you shouldn’t sit and watch all day.
Eat your popcorn in front of it, then go out and play!
6
Your rainbow’s gold is one clue away.
And how I wish a wee bit longer I could stay.
Look where you hang all your clothes and put your shoes.
And you’ll finally find something besides just a clue!
7
Thank you for all the St. Patrick’s Day fun!
But it’s time that this lil’ leprechaun better run.
Back to the rainbow to give me Irish mum a kiss.
And make sure to wear green! You don’t want to get pinched!
Love, Leroy
Your personal leprechaun

***
Hope you enjoy!
For our treasure:
I just tried to find everything green that I could. So I found green blow pops, sprite, green bubbles, junior mints, a sparkly gold bouncy ball (all a $), the green basket is from All A Dollar, too. Bauer also got a green train for his thomas table and a big green ball. Bentley has wanted a Monster High doll for a while, and I thought this may be the opportunity to finally get her one. I felt like that would be a weird addition to an Easter basket. It turned out perfect, because there was one with green skin. I also found her green dippin‘ dots lip gloss from all a dolla. So there’s some pot’o‘ gold ideas. And kids love just a pot of gold chocolates! I just somehow have suckered myself into a standard these kids are holding me to… or Leroy to.

Here is my first attempt at trying to upload my document. It sort of worked, I lost my cute fonts. If anyone has any advice for having attaching documents in blogger, let me know!

http://docs.google.com/document/d/1yC38KMCeq05YAROsIsr_1xtVPf0FIpO1ygKGBShpySk/edit?hl=es#

If you’re not wearing green I hope you get pinched! And I hope it leaves a bruise.

kickin’ off V*day

So the plan was 14 days of Valentine’s.. makes sense, right? But I have a defect. I’m a little bit bi-polar when it comes to my blog. 90 % of me wants to fix it up and have cute fun stuff on it including pictures, crafts, recipes.. anything!! And the 10% of me that’s too ornery/busy/ more in the mood to watch a lifetime movie usually wins. But.. that takes us back to the New Year’s resolutions.. and I made a resolution to be better about blogging. I took a second to go through my old family blog yesterday, and now I realize why. There are so many little things I blogged about that I have forgotten about. And it’s so fun to go back and see! So whether someone finds something here that they like, or I have something for a point of reference for myself.. I’m happy.

Here are two of my kiddos that didn’t make the cut for our Valentine’s Day cards.. but I thought they were too cute not to share.. I hate to post the ones that are on the card.. then it’s like you’re already seen it.. and what fun is a card you’ve already seen? None.

That takes us back to the 14 days of Valentine’s. It’s now down to twelve. That’s how I roll. Next year may be better. Maybe I’ll be worse? Maybe it’ll be 9 days of Valentine’s. Who knows.. that’s what you get when you’re dealin’ with a bipolar blogger. ANywaY, In an hour or two, my official first day of Valentine’s Partyin’ will be up!

It’s been a long time

shouldn’t’ve left you
without a slow beat to step to

step to
step to
step to
step to
step to

wickee wickee wickee

I’m back. To all you five readers out there who may or may not check in. Did I make your day? Anybody? Um.. maybe not.

I have been so busy with everything that blogging has been last on my list.. as usual. And as usual, I’m going to promise to be better at it.. but we’ll see. Soon I will have pictures of many of my cute boutique-y items that I may or may not be selling on Etsy.. I’m also thinking about doing a booth here in SaLt LaKe. My husband is working crazy hours at his new business which is great for business.. but sometimes hard for me. By the time I’ve possibly eaten a meal and if I’m lucky.. taken a shower? it’s midnight and I’m tired.

I have many New Year’s Goals to help with the way I’m feeling and to try and keep moving with all the things I want to do. Sometimes it really helps to look at my list, and sometimes it just really, ReALly overwhelms me. If it’s winter blues.. I guess I better go tanning. It’s healthy for you if it’s curing winter blues, right? That’s what I’m telling myself. But back to goals for the New Year.. Here’s my list..

*Don’t click on any of the links.. it’s some kind of virus on my* *computer and it brings up junk*

1. Lose Weight (can it be a list of goals for me without that?) & Be healthy. I’ve joined a biggest loser blog, and so far I’m feeling way motivated (Thanks Christina!) And so far I’ve been over a week without sugar.. suga
2. Learn to be a better cook. I know it’s in me. But sometimes I’m just so busy.. and then when I actually do cook, no one was expecting it and they all already ate. Or maybe that’s just what they say so that they don’t have to eat it. And my cute sister-in-law Jeanine is doing a blog because she’s working on this same thing (she’s a good cook, she’s just trying to find the right recipes) so if you’re interested in her blog, you should check that out.
3. Take my kids on “Field Trips” once a week. This week we did Classic skating. I was seriously just dreading it in the pit of my stomach the whole night before. It wasn’t AS bad as I thought it would be.
4. Really develop talents that I’ve been wanting to develop. Get better at photography, learn to sew, I want to take singing lessons.. start up piano lessons again. This is the list that overwhelms me because I don’t know where I’ll find the time. But I’m gonna make it happen.
5. Keep my house clean. This was actually a goal I made last year and I’ve gotten so much better at it. And thanks to my cute friend, Marianne, I know one of the biggest keys is just to throw as much away (or give away) as you can.
6. Finish all my unfinished projects. There’s a list. But I won’t bore you. Oh wait, just a little boring taste… Bentley’s room redone, Bauer’s room finished, the playroom done, fix the floor in the office.. finish the painting for upstairs…ugh. But it’s gonna happen!
7. Figure out what I want to be when I grow up. Here’s my dilemma.. I’ve always thought I’d go into something more serious like law, or even medicine (whaaa?). But when I sit down, write the pros and cons.. I don’t like science. I don’t like math! Not to mention I’d be like 50 by the time I got done with school. What I like is art, and being creative. I’ve been that way since I was teeny. So I need to really figure out what it is I want to go for, and then go for it. Don’t get me wrong, I love photography. I will always love photography. But when I’m too busy with it, it kind of ruins it for me. My passion is fashion (a serious fashion passion.. read it like Flight of the Concords would sing it) . And another passion is party planning. But, first of all… fashion. So I’m thinking I’m gonna go for it.
8. Put more fun stuff I love on my blog. Even if I have lost all my readers. It’s happenin’..
9. Write more. I love thinking up stories. I think I’m gonna write one.. starting with one for Bentley.
10. After I feel confident with my musical lessons-perform a song somewhere. That one makes me nervous just typing it.
11. Run a little boutique. Not to make me crazy, but to keep me a little busy with the stuff I love.
12. Let my husband know how much I love him. Cause I do. Not to mention he’s lookin’ pretty saxy.. he’s lost over 20 pounds in two weeks! Or does that make us kinda hate him?? Maybe just a little..

So here’s to a new year! A new me, a better, happier, healthier me and my family.
(Should I have made it a goal that we wouldn’t have any hospital visits? Or is that too unrealistic? I’ll just keep magnets hidden)
I’m going to post monthly on how my goals are coming.
What are your goals? Do you usually stick to them?
I’ll be posting more… and taking a gander your blogs more.. leaving hilarious comments for all to see.