Thursday, January 31, 2013

It's snow fun in the cold!

Our weather has been really crazy the last few days. It was almost 60 degrees out and the snow melted. The next thing you knew the temperature dropped back down and there were snow flakes falling. We got a little bit of snow last night so we all went outside to play.

I was only out there for about 5 minutes. This Louisiana girl isn't built for snow...

I'm not sure how I ended up being the one getting hit with snowballs EVEN though I had the camera. Maybe that's why I only spent five minutes outside?

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

The magic of king cake

Okay friends. Grab some coffee, king cake if you have it, and sit down. Well you are probably already sitting down... If that's the case keep sitting down and get up to get your cake and beverage after you read this.

KING CAKE! Those two words are enough to make my mouth water. Growing up in Louisiana I have a fondness for this Mardi Gras staple. It is amazing. It is heaven to your taste buds.

After moving to Illinois I feared that it might be ages before I experienced the wonderment that is this cake. But fear not! I have an amazing sister. She ordered one and had it shipped to me. If you have never tried king cake then you can not understand my excitement when Mr. FedEx rang my door bell. I opened the door and there was that glorious box.
I could smell the cake as I carried the box to the kitchen. Then I couldn't get the box open! I guess they figure that they should give you some kind of exercise prior to eating this sugar and calorie filled treat.

It was packaged like this:

I thought hmmm. That doesn't look like a king cake. After opening it the rest of the way I found this:

Ah! Now I see. Very smart! If it came decorated and was jostled on the journey it would arrive messed up and ugly.

So I quickly decorated it. I had very little patience. I NEEDED to eat it right away!

It was amazing. Absolutely the best king cake I have ever eaten. Luckily they included a menu and the website information to order another one if I wanted. I want! It is definitely not cheap. You can certainly get them cheaper if you live in an area that sells them.

There is a tiny baby inside the cake. The tradition is that if you get the piece of cake with the baby in it you have to host the next king cake party!

They also had a flyer with an explanation of the history of Mardi Gras and king cakes.

If you are interested you can order one for yourself HERE.

Mardi Gras is such a fun time of the year. I'm sad that I'm missing out. Having this cake makes it a little better.

Last year we took Noah to his first Mardi Gras parade. Don't worry not all parades are crazy New Orleans naked people parades. He kept saying the whole time that he wanted a stuffed animal. Finally he caught one...and then another. Parade days are usually cold and rainy. You go down to the parade route EARLY in the morning and stake out a place. We always bring the camper. It helps to have a warm place to hide out. We barbecue all day and hang out with family and friends. The parade starts. You catch cups, beads, coins, and stuffed toys. You listen to the bands and admire the pretty floats. You pack up your loot and sit in traffic for hours trying to get home. It is crazy. It is fun. It is Mardi Gras.

 Mardi Gras is not Mardi Gras without king cake!

Friday, January 25, 2013

Like This? And dog boots!

So I finally made a Facebook page.

I've been looking at dog boots online. As soon as payday gets here I'll run to the store and buy them. The roads here have been covered in salt because of the snow and ice. Salt is really irritating to the pads of a dogs feet. It burns =(
So you can either make sure to rinse your puppy's paws really well when you get home OR buy dog boots. I'm opting for boots. Trying to rinse 8 total paws after a walk does not sound fun. Especially when 4 of those paws belong to a wiggly puppy. 

I hope my pups like their boots better than these dogs did...

Pixlr... How did I NOT know about this?

I was researching information on how to do your own blog design. You know HTML coding, crazy computer language that you don't understand, and of course pulling your hair out trying to figure it out.
Well somewhere along the way I stumbled upon Pixlr. Uh? Amazing! So I spent an obscene amount of time playing with this website...almost making me late to pick Noah up...Shhh! 
I'm really a learn by doing type of person. So I spent a lot of time just clicking all of the buttons. The best thing is that it is FREE! What? I know! It's great! I'm sure in my few hours of playing around I am far from jedi master level but I'm learning.  
Does anyone else use this website? Is there something better out there that I am missing?
I'm still trying to teach myself how to make my own blog design. I know once I figure it out I will be super proud and happy. Sure I could hire someone to do it but I love learning new things...AND more importantly the great feeling I get once I have figured it out. I WILL figure it out. I WILL do an uncoordinated happy dance.

They even have graphics you can play with! I'm in love...

Thursday, January 24, 2013

The Book Chat - Current Reads


I am currently reading:
Image via GoodReads

I actually haven't read very many non-fiction books. I definitely haven't read many autobiographies. I love Ellen. I was browsing the book selection on Amazon and I came across this book. I read a few sample pages, laughed a lot, and purchased it. It was also only $7.00 on my Kindle! Score!

I've never listened to an audio book but I can tell this would be one great book to listen to. Even just reading it I can hear Ellen's voice. She is so peppy and fun.  I am about 3/4 of the way through the book. It is very funny, uplifting, and really just a happy read.

If you want to smile and laugh out loud...sometimes in this book!

Do you love books? Join the book chat!
Head on over to Sweet Green Tangerine and link up!

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

So What Wednesday

So What Wednesday

Linking up with Shannon for So What Wednesday.

So what if...

- I've been sending lots of photos of the new puppy to my family as if he was a new baby.
Here is a picture of him on my lap, one of him by the fireplace, one of him outside, one of him    sleeping...Sorry family. =)

And since I'm talking (typing?) about him....
- I like watching the snow fall but dislike actually being out in it.

- I hardly ever eat breakfast. I'm just not hungry in the morning!

- I must watch Steve Harvey's talk show every day. He is funny. He is smart. He is so kind. How can you not love this man?

- I also have to watch Ellen!

- I always forget something at the grocery store EVEN if I have a list.

- We still haven't finished the master bedroom. It has been terribly neglected....

Link up with Life After I "Dew" and share what you're saying SO WHAT to.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Ticked off Tuesday

I'm joining Amanda from This IS My Real Hair for ticked off Tuesday.

At this moment I am most ticked off about this:
That is INSANE! I feel like I live in the Arctic. Well actually I'm sure it is much colder there. However I would like to live somewhere and not have my phone send me weather alerts stating that the wind chill is so low that frostbite can occur in 30 minutes. No thanks... My heater is set to 76 degrees and I am still cold.

I never thought I would pray for 40 degree weather...

Monday, January 21, 2013

This is Artoo.

I really don't know how we went from getting a lap dog to getting him. But here he is. He is incredibly sweet. He was rescued from a kill shelter in Kentucky. He made the very long journey here to be fostered in Chicago. On Saturday we met him and loved him. He came to us with the name George. We changed it to in R2D2. Noah is a big Star Wars fan! Artoo is 6 months old. Thankfully he is already potty trained so that makes my life a lot easier.

At first Bella was thrilled to have a playmate. The novelty wore off quickly. By Saturday night she was avoiding him at all costs. I know it is a huge adjustment for her. Going from being in a one super spoiled pooch home to a two spoiled pooches home is tough. Especially when that second pup is a puppy who can be rambunctious and likes to tug on your ears...
We have been sure to give Bella a lot of extra attention. We put Artoo in his kennel when we see Bella is getting agitated with him. She needs a break now and then.

Artoo actually is a lap dog...a big lap dog.
He likes to be by someone all of the time. He likes to try and fit in your lap on the couch. He does try to nip a lot but we are working on that. We don't really know what he is. The shelter did tell us that he is a dachshund mix. He definitely has a longer wiggly body like a dachshund but he has long legs. So who knows what he will look like as he grows...

Now we just need to be patient with Bella and hope that they start to bond soon. As of right now they are napping near each other. That's progress!

Friday, January 18, 2013

Peak and Pit - Friday's Letters


I'm linking up today with Allie and Brin.

The pit of my week...
Definitely yesterday when my lady bits doctor told me that trying to have a baby for 6 months isn't actually a long time. Well it FEELS like a long time! She was really nice and I liked her a lot. It was just kind of a let down. I half expected her to say 6 months! Well let's get some tests done and figure out what's wrong! She also told me that many women don't get pregnant when they are stressed. I've definitely been stressed! She said the best thing to do is to relax and try to be patient. I'll try...

The peak of my week...
This four day weekend! Well it actually stretches in to next week but oh well. That is two extra days that I don't have to get up early. I don't have to venture out in the cold to to take Noah to school. That is fantastic!


I'm also linking up with Ashley =)

Dear sweet adorable puppy,
I hope all goes well and we get to keep you! This furry little guy is coming to our house on Saturday. He was saved from a high kill shelter in Kentucky. That is quite a journey for a little pup! He is being fostered right now in Chicago. Our application for him was approved! His foster mom will bring him over on Saturday and as long as we all get along we get to keep him and love him! 

 Dear Ice,
You haven't gotten me yet! Quite a few times you've almost made me fall flat on my butt... That is unkind.

Dear Noah,
You are crazy. You are funny. I'm sure you get it from your dad. 
At Ihop the other night we walk in and Noah walks up to the counter. There isn't anyone there. Noah shouts out, "Table for four please! Table for four!" Two times in a row....
Embarrassing and funny. 

Happy Friday Everyone!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

The Book Chat-Pet Peeves


Linking up for The Book Chat with Jessica from Sweet Green Tangerine and her co-host Miss Brighton from Dear Brighton to share our book pet peeves.

1. Food on library book pages. Ew. Ew. Ew. There is nothing more disgusting than being really involved in a good book when you turn the page and... What is that? A dry giant booger? Maybe a bit of casserole? It's covering some of the words! try not to touch it while reading! Yuck I touched it! I've been contaminated!
Would the library mind if I used some Lysol spray on the page?

2. Being overly descriptive. It is really hard for me to stay interested in a book when the author goes on and on describing something. By the time I'm on the second page of you describing the cool morning air you've lost me. I'm probably just skimming the page by now and debating just putting the book down.

3. Please don't talk to me while I'm reading. I can't really listen to you and read at the same time. If it appears I'm listening to you I'm probably pretending. In a few minutes I will say, "Huh?" and you will have to start all over again. Just wait until I'm finished.

4. REALLY long chapters! I can not put a book down in the middle of a chapter. It's a minor illness I'm sure. When I read a book that has really long chapters I find myself speed reading and not really absorbing the information because it's way past my bedtime and I MUST finish the chapter before I can go to sleep. 

5. Misleading book covers. I know. I know. Don't judge a book by its cover. I don't, but when I'm reading a book I expect whatever is on the cover to be somehow related to the book. If I'm reading a book and there is say a horse on the cover and I get to the end of the book without reading anything about a horse...that is going to bother me.

6. Abrupt endings. I think the biggest letdown is when I see there are only a few pages left and nothing is really being resolved. I need closure! I need to know how everything ends up. Don't leave me hanging. Unless you are writing a sequel...that I will forgive.

Sorry if this contains many many typos. I'm in a hurry but had to link up! What a great topic!
And I'm off to a doctors appointment...Kindle in hand. Hopefully I don't run in to any of my pet peeves.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

It all comes together...

I finally finished buying pieces for the mantle. I didn't want to just buy stuff to fill the space. I wanted to LOVE what was up there. So little by little it all came together.


I made the two signs that are above the t.v. The rest of the stuff, except for the t.v. of course, came from either Ross or TJ Maxx. I am not into spending a ton of money on anything. If you're patient and willing to spend some time looking these stores have great deals!

The 2 birds are HEAVY, great quality, and so cute. They were only $4 each!
The box is actually a drawer organizer $4
The balls in the box $3 for 6...not sure what I'll do with the other 2.
Candle with base $4
Each of the glass vases were $6
The dried stuff that smells AMAZING in the vases were $5 each
The bowl the flowers are in $2!!! It was in the kitchen zone. I love it =)
I already had the fake flowers. I got them from Walmart a long time ago for about $6

That's 45 DOLLARS! 
It could have been so much more than that...

I like to walk in the room and just look at all of it. It's so colorful and happy. 

Still need to hide those t.v. cords...

Monday, January 14, 2013

Thank you winter.

It seems Illinois is easing us into the winter weather. I've been told that winter is not normally like this. Usually they have more snow by now. I am grateful. We did get some snow over the weekend. We spent a lot of time outside playing with Bella. She LOVES the snow! She just runs and runs. Occasionally she stops to eat the snow or just put some in her mouth and throw it in the air.

I finally bought snow boots. They are super warm and comfy. Noah loves his snow pants. He calls them farmer pants lol. He does look kind of like a farmer...

You know you're from the south when you head up north and have fun watching the snowplows go down the street. lol

I FINALLY finished buying pieces for our fireplace mantle. I love it so much! I'll share all of the super cute stuff with you tomorrow.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Flash back funny - Italy, the gecko, and the box of doom.

I read this post by Michelle from Mish Lovin' Life. And it reminded me of a very scary night in Italy.

Also if you've never read her blog you should! She is super funny!
She also blogs over at Filling in the Dots where she blogs 
about a GREAT adventure. She sold all of her belongings
 and is traveling the world. That is awesome!
I love reading about her journey.

Let me set the scene for you.
We are living in Naples, Italy. We have just returned to our apartment from a movie. I am exhausted. Noah is 3 at this time.

I go into our bedroom and put my pajamas on. I do not turn on the light. A few minutes later Joey goes into the same room, turns the light on, and tells me to get in there NOW. 
Right there above the spot where I changed my clothes is a gecko. A large orange nasty gecko. It was BIG!

After trying to shake off my heeby jeebies Joey comes up with a plan. 

1. We will get a large cardboard box.
2. The gecko with be pushed into the box with a broom.
3. The box will be put outside.

Simple enough...
This is where things start to look bad for me.
Joey dislikes all things reptile or amphibian. So guess who gets to hold the box of doom?
Yep that's! My ex Army husband will have the easy job of pushing the beast into the box while I catch it and dispose of it outside. Two Iraq deployments? No problem. Gecko? Mmmm nope.

Somehow I think this was unfair. He is lucky I love him so much.

And so after pumping my self up a bit I grab that box. I take my place under that nasty bulbous tailed creature. I wait.

But first I open the patio door and inform Noah that he better get out of the bedroom doorway because I WILL run him over running towards that patio.

Joey grabs the broom. I steady the box. The gecko drops into the box and the screaming and running begins. FYI I am running and screaming. Joey and Noah are laughing. Again I think this was unfairly planned. 

I throw the gecko outside...really I throw the box outside with the gecko in it. I slam the door shut and lock it. YES lock it. You never know, he could have been a special species of gecko with opposable thumbs. He could be very angry that he was so rudely thrown outside and come after me in my sleep.

I did feel a little bad. What if I injured him? I didn't feel bad enough to go check though.

Oh memories...
If our home is ever invaded by a creepy creature I call NOT IT!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

The best gift.

Home made gifts are my favorite. The person making the gift put real thought and heart in to the present. When I opened Noah's gift to me and Joey I expected something like a picture or frame he made at school. I was blown away by the gift. Noah's teacher is so creative. Inside the adorable bag was a calendar. A calendar full of cute poems and Noah's hand prints. I was sobbing. Christmas day sobbing. I had to tell Noah that I was crying because I loved it so much...not because I didn't like it. It is hanging on our wall. I bought a separate calendar to write on and cross off the days because I want to keep this one forever.

Here it is starting with January of course.

 It really was the best gift.

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