Sunday, October 6, 2013

Amelia Rose

As of October 5th, my wonderful sister had a baby girl named Amelia Rose.  She was 8 lbs, 3 oz. and 20 inches long.  And let me tell you - she's a BEAUTY!  I could very well be a little biased, but I don't think so.
Amelia Rose

It all started with a phone call at 2:00 AM.  My brother-in-law (BIL) and my dad had tried calling me for an hour, but my phone was in the living room and I was very much asleep.  My BIL called Travis, who immediately woke up.  He said, "It's baby time!"

Half asleep, Travis wakes me up saying, "It's baby time! It's baby time!"  Some how, I knew what that meant.  I grabbed the phone and my BIL tells me that my sister is having the baby!  Her contractions started around 1 AM - and by 2:00 AM, they were at the hospital with the OK to go!

I had to work at 9 AM, so of course, I was checking my phone and my Facebook to get the latest updates.  My sister and BIL kept everyone posted via Facebook.  At 9:15 AM - my niece was like a freight train.  Nothing could stop her, and she was ready to be born!  Amelia Rose was born at 9:38 AM.

Hi everybody!
I have not had the opportunity to meet my beautiful niece yet.  However, I plan on visiting this upcoming weekend.  My nephew hasn't really understood what has happened here.  I'm sure he's going to be a little confused when they get home.  But he pet his new sister and gave her kisses.  Other than that, he didn't really pay much attention to her at first.  I'm sure that will change when they get home.

Here are the pictures that they shared with me.  This weekend, I'll be able to post some of my own!  I can't wait to meet her!
All comfy!!
Joe is a big brother!

Joe gave his sister lots of kisses.
Everyone says Amelia looks so much like her brother when he was born.  I guess I can see that... especially with those big cheeks!!
Joseph Liam when he was born January 6, 2011
Amelia Rose when she was born October 5, 2013

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Free Stuff from Shutterfly!

I know it has been a while since I last posted.  But I wanted to share this awesome deal!  Shutterfly has a special offer going on for 101 FREE 4x6 prints!  Special Offer Code:  101Prints

Use it today!!  And if you are new user, you get an additional 50 FREE 4x6 prints automatically for signing up!!

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Quitting Again

Today marks the 6th time I have attempted to quit smoking.  Yes, some know, I am a frequent smoker. I have no idea what to expect this time around.  Will it work?  Can I do it?  No idea.

I now have an electronic cigarette and Nicorette gum (4 mg).  Let's see how this goes.

Today was the first evening I gave it a shot.  I chew on a piece of gum that was surprising good!  I bought a flavored kind of gum that tastes a lot like Wintergreen gum.  It burned a little bit, but it wasn't as bad as I thought it would be.  I just stopped chewing when it burned.

Travis still smokes.  He had a cigarette when I was chewing the gum - and lo and behold, I didn't have a single craving for one.  Later in the night, when the gum no longer burned and started to lose flavor, I made a BIG mistake.

I decided what would one cigarette do?  It's like winging myself off, right?  Over time, I should crave smoking less and less.... I think.  I lit up a cigarette and started puffing.


Talk about nicotine!  I couldn't even smoke the damn thing!  I felt so incredibly sick.  I tossed out the cigarette and felt like I was going to vomit.  Luckily, a friend we were hanging out with tonight rushed and got me a bottled water.  I have never enjoyed the taste of water as much as I did tonight.

So I won't be doing that again!  I'm thinking this gum is going to work!  And in the car, because I have a habit of smoking - I have my e-cig to help.  That is... if I'm not chewing the gum!  YIKES!

OK, you might be wondering why it has taken me 6 times to quit smoking.  I'll gladly give you some back story about smoking.  When I was a young adolescent, I thought smoking was cool.  My relatives had tobacco farms (and still do), and they sell tobacco to Phillip Morris.  I grew up around smokers - even though neither of my parents smoked.  My grandfather's ex-wife would buy me a carton when I was 12 years old to sneak back home in my luggage.  I thought I was so cool.  My sister, friends, and I would sneak away on our country property to "hike" or "ride bikes".  If someone's parents weren't home, we were "hanging out" or "studying".  My parents were not dumb.  They could smell it.  They would steal our packs and throw them out.  But I could always get more.  It became a habit to steal my friend's mother's packs.  We would sneak around and steal cigarettes from adults that smoked around us.  And I still had my connection to my grandpa's ex-wife that bought me cartons.

We were not smoking every day.  It was just something exciting and made us feel like we were grown up.  Why we wanted to grow up so fast, I don't know.  It didn't become habitual until my friends and I started driving.  It was our chance to smoke a cigarette before or after school - and we would hose the interior of the car with perfume or sprays to cover up the smell.

I quit smoking for the first time when I turned 18 - ironically.  I just lost interest in it.  I also no longer had my free connections and I didn't want to pay for cigarettes.  I had quit cold turkey for 3 years.

When I turned 21, I was living with my boyfriend and going to college.  I was around smokers all the time.  I went out to parties and I did what a lot of dumb college kids do - go to bars.  I didn't have a problem not smoking until I realized everyone around me smoked.  All of my friends were smoking and my boyfriend was smoking, too.  My boyfriend told me it was OK to smoke socially - just as long as it didn't become a habit.  All of my friends were saying, "One cigarette won't kill ya."  So, I caved to fit in, and I started smoking again.

Quitting #2:  I stopped cold turkey after I met my husband.  I was pressed for cash, and I didn't feel satisfied with a cigarette anymore.  I had no problems - until someone lit up a cigarette and I could smell it.  That stage did not last long.  I was back to smoking again.

The third time I quit was when I was 24.  I found out about my birth defect when I experienced volvulus.  I had to have an upper endoscopy done.  During my endoscopy, they found tar in my esophagus.  They took pictures and showed it to me.  After looking at it and seeing that the tar was my own doing - I felt disgusting.  I saw the damage I was doing to myself.  Not long after that, I found out I was pregnant.  I quit cold turkey for the baby.  This time, I had strong cravings for a cigarette.  It felt like I was going to tackle someone that smelled like cigarette smoke.  Whenever I saw a pack of cigarettes, I was so tempted to take one and light up.  When I miscarried, I lost all the care in the whole entire world.  I didn't care about the tar.  I didn't care about cancer.  I didn't care about anything. AT. ALL!  I began smoking much more heavily than I ever had before.  I was up to a pack and a half every day.  Let's just say, my finances were terrible.  I was going broke to have a cigarette.

I quit for the fourth time when I started pulling myself back together.  I was 25 years old.  I tried doing the electronic cigarette.  I was successful for maybe... a month.  The electronic cigarette became my "in-between packs" smoke.

The fifth time was when we moved to Fort Wayne.  I was determined to quit.  I tried gum.  I tried eating more.  I tried being active.  Nothing could satisfy my craving.  Travis tried to quit with me.  We relied on the electronic cigarette when we were really having nicotine fits.  We were successful for maybe... a few months (3 max).  I don't know why or how - but we began smoking again.

So here I am - at my 6th attempt to quit.  I don't like the smell.  I don't like the cravings.  I don't like how it makes your teeth and nails yellow.  I don't like my throat hurting.  I don't like the taste.  I feel guilty every time I smoke.  I hate the stale smell in my car.  I hate the trash it leaves behind.  I hate it.  I've lost so many important people in my life due to cancer from smoking.  And it breaks my dad's heart to see me smoke.  I hate doing that to him.  I also hate the fact that I cannot work a full day without having to run outside for a cigarette.  Sure, I like the break - but I hate having to sit out by the smelly dumpster just to get my fix.  If I want a career, I can't be running outside all the time to take a puff.  It makes me look unreliable when I am not readily available to do my job while I am there.  Plus, I get cranky all the time without a cigarette.  How can something so small have so much power of my character?  How can it control so much of my day?  And I really hate being told I smell like a cigarette.  I hate having headaches when I go too long without nicotine.  I hate how expensive it is.  All around - I am just tired of it.  And if I want to have children some day - smoking is only going to complicate it.  I have enough issues with carrying a baby that I don't need to add anything else to it to make it worse.  I need to get my health back in control.  I need to quit.  I want to quit.  I'm hoping this works.

Monday, July 1, 2013


I have done quite a bit of self-reflection since my last post.  I realized I had dreams, I had plans, and I was bound and determined to reach them.  However, I did not.

I thought by now, I would have a great career.  I thought I would have the house with a white picket fence.  I thought I'd at least have one child by now and living happily ever after.  Unfortunately, those cards didn't play out, not yet at least.

I get so over my head with dreams and hopes.  It's like I'm forcing the next stage of life to happen.  I am forcing the happy ending to start now.  I feel like I have been patient long enough.  It's been years that we've been struggling.  People say I live in a generation of self-entitlement and instant gratification - and you know... they are probably right.  But sometimes I can't help but wonder... when is it my time to shine?  When will our happily ever after begin?

I've tried being optimistic and positive.  I've tried being proactive, organized, and detailed in everything.  I can't say that my discipline hasn't paid off because it has.  We are much better off than where we were last year.  We are much better off than where we were in January.

I don't like living with my father-in-law.  Living here has built up a lot of depression, anxiety, frustration, and just meanness.  Travis and I realized that our problems stem from not being self-sufficient enough to start our new beginning.  So I've been very proactive and disciplined towards finding that better job.  I'm searching for my new career.  And Travis has been very proactive towards finding a better paying job that will allow him to go to college.

On top of it all, I forgot to just live my life.  I'm not living my life for me anymore.  I'm living my life for that future house.  I'm living my life to pay off the next bill on time.  I'm living my life to count the pennies.  I'm not LIVING.

So in the big scheme of things, I have to start being happy and grateful for what I have.  I have to stop constantly searching for happiness when I have it right here beside me.  I have my adorable cuddly kitty cats.  I have a roof over my head.  I have enough money to live comfortably.  I have a supportive, loving family.  I have in-laws that I get along with very well.  I have co-workers that I really do enjoy to be around.  I have friends that will always be there.  I have my health.  And most importantly, I have an amazing husband who will always be there for me.  He will always support me and my goals.  He will always help me.  He loves me as much as I love him.  He never asks for anything in return.  He's always a happy-go-lucky kind of guy.  He has a beautiful soul.  And not to mention, he has been and will always be my DREAM guy.  I am very lucky and blessed to have him in my life.  No matter what happens, I will be happy.  I will be happy because he is truly genuine.  Together, we've been through harder times.  We've been through worse.  We will get through this stage together.

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Dear Blog


After 5 PM

You & I Have a Date.

Laundry Will Commence As Well.


One Busy Working Girl

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Home Management Binder Upgraded!

Yeah, I decided my poor binder was falling apart.  It needed an upgrade....

So I got a new binder and put everything back together.

**ETA:  I got a lot of my pages from Let's Meet for Lunch.  Unfortunately, the blogger no longer exists.  I was going to post links for you all to get the same stuff, because they are simply awesome.  But now, I can't do that.  I'm sorry!**

At first, I was not a fan of these dividers, but they have become super helpful.  They are big enough, so they don't get blocked by my pages that are sheet protectors.  And they have helped me color code my binder.

I still have my red pouch that is full.

I created my own divider pages that fit my personality.  Each page has it's own picture & quote that I like that relates to that section.  I have these sections in my binder:

1.  Calendars (Blue)
"The common man is not concerned about the passage of time, the man of talent is driven by it." - Shoppenhauer
"What may be done at any time will be done at no time." - Scottish Proverb

I found these awesome calendars at  

I also use the Birthday & Anniversary calendar that I found on Let's Meet For Lunch (no longer available).

2.  Meal Planning (Purple)
"If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world." - J.R.R. Tolkien
"We feed the ones we love." - my mama

In this section, I added the freezer inventory & the pantry inventory sheets that I found on Let's Meet for Lunch (no longer available).  I put them in page protectors so that I can write on them with dry erase markers & pens.  Whenever I update the items on this page, I can just erase them and write what I need to down.

I also put The Eat Sheet from in a page protector as well.  This way, when we plan our meals, I can reuse the same page.  If there are special ingredients that I notice we don't have in the Inventory pages, I write them down on the Grocery List side.  Travis and I normally don't plan breakfast, so it's usually just lunch and dinner that we plan for.

When I put together my grocery list for the week, I can easily look at my Inventory pages and The Eat Sheet for items that I know I need to get.  However, to make sure that I don't forget any important items on my trip (because I like to just in and get out.  Hanging out at the grocery store is not something I enjoy.), I refer to the Ultimate Grocery List from  It has EVERYTHING on the list, so I can run through the list and know I am not going to forget anything.

Lastly, I have included a page protector for baseball cards that I picked up at Wal-Mart.  This holds any coupons that will expire this month.  When I go shopping, I can check to make sure I get items that have a coupon.

3.  Cleaning (Orange)
"I make no secret of the fact that I would rather lie on a sofa than sweep beneath it.  But you have to be efficient if you're going to be lazy." - Shirley Conran
"At worst, a house unkept cannot be so distressing as a life unlived." - Rose Macaulay

Here, I have a daily chore list to reference.  I got my daily chore list from Let's Meet for Lunch (no longer available).  I might make my own some other day (or when we actually buy a house).

I also included a Deep Cleaning Monthly Schedule from Shabby Princess via Two Things in Common.  I like it.  I have not actually used it here to be completely honest.  But, when we get a place of our own, I know I will appreciate this.  Who knows, I just might make my own too!

4.  Finances (Green)
"Never ask of money spent / where the spender thinks it well." - Robert Frost
"With parsimony a little is sufficient; without it nothing is sufficient; but frugality make a poor man rich." - Parsimony

This is my life saver.  In the folder, I keep scrap paper so that I can organize numbers and quick math (or jotting down numbers to save when I'm hitting away at the calculator).  I keep the Monthly Cash Flow Plan worksheets from Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University.  I really do use it - a LOT.  I'm still not perfect with my budget, but this worksheet helps keep me sane for the most part.  I've put these worksheets in page protectors so that I can write our budget on them with a dry erase marker.  Every month, I can just erase it and reuse it.

I also included all of my student loan debt information.  I know exactly how much towards each loan is left, what the confirmation numbers and account numbers are, and what the interest is.  Based on my current repayment plan, the repayment plans are also printed out and stored here.

Lastly, Travis and I signed up for an Opt Out Prescreen.  We printed a copy for each of us that we keep here.  A mortgage loan originator told us this trick to boost up our credit scores a little bit overnight.  You know how you get spam mail for credit cards, saying you've been pre-approved?  Well, credit companies sell your credit information.  YIKES.  When they sell that info, it has a small negative impact on your credit score - so small, you can't notice it.  If you go online to, you can opt out of your credit information being sold to credit card companies.  For some people, it will boost it only 3 or 5 points.  Others, it can boost your score up to 10 or 20 points!  It can't hurt to try it!  The Opt Out request is good for 5 years.

5.  Medical (Yellow)
"A healthy family is sacred territory." - Anonymous
"People who laugh actually live longer than those who don't laugh.  Few persons realize that health actually varies according to the amount of laughter." - James J. Walsh

This is where I keep our Basic Medical Information sheets that I got from Let's Meet for Lunch (no longer available).  I also keep most recent information in this section - such as Travis's allergy sheet, a sheet I made for all of my medical conditions and when I went to the doctor last.  This helps us keep track of when our last appointments were - so we know when we should schedule our next one, or if we get any updates from doctors regarding our health, we can easily keep track for each other.

6. Pets (Blue)
"A cat has absolute emotional honesty; human beings, for one reason or another, may hide their feelings, but a cat does not."  - Ernest Hemingway
"He is your friend, your partner, your defender, your dog.  You are his life, his love, his leader. He will be yours, faithful and true, to the last beat of his heart.  You owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion." - Unknown

I keep our Pet Care & Information sheets here that I found on Let's Meet for Lunch (no longer available).  If we leave and someone needs to house sit for us or watch our cats, they know everything about our pets that they need to know.  I also keep copies of the most recent vaccination in a page protector.  That way, if there are any questions as to whether or not my cats have their vaccinations, I can pull out that information easily.  The vaccinations also let me know when they are due for their annual check up and next vaccination.

7.  Home Management (Purple)
"Home, let me come home.  Home is wherever I'm with you." - Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros "Home"
"It takes hands to build a house, but only hearts can build a home." Unknown

I keep Home Maintenance logs here - which includes the serial numbers for all of our expensive pieces.  I got these logs from Let's Meet For Lunch (no longer available).  When we buy a house, I plan on adding to this section.

I also keep important documents in this section.  Any important cards go into a baseball card protector.  If there is ever a fire, this binder will help us out immensely.  That is, if we remember to grab it first!

8. Car Management (Orange)
"All journeys have secret destinations of which the traveler is unaware." - Martin Buber
"No one realizes how beautiful it is to travel until he comes home and rests his head on his old, familiar pillow." - Lin Yutang

This is where we keep the Car Maintenance logs from Let's Meet for Lunch (no longer available).  We also keep our car titles and insurance information here.

9.  Blogging & Planning (Green)
"Never be bullied into silence, never allow yourself to be made a victim.  Accept no one's definition of your life; define yourself." - Harvey Fierstein
"Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter and those who matter matter don't mind." - Dr. Seuss

Currently, I only have Planning Notes from Holly Days in here.  I plan on expanding this section to include blog planning, Pinterest projects to work on, and party planning.

10.  Family Yellow Pages (Yellow)
"Love the people God gave you, because He will need them back one day."
"Friendship is not a matter of distance, but a matter of heart.  Family is not a matter of blood, but a matter of loving and loved."
"Distance is not for the fearful, it is for the bold.  It's for those who are willing to spend a lot of time alone in exchange for a little time with the one they love.  It's for those knowing a good thing when they see it, even if they don't see it nearly enough."

I have the first page dedicated to emergency contacts & important numbers to keep on hand.  

After that, I have the phone numbers and addresses of family and friends.  If I ever need to update an address or number, I can just reprint the page they are listed on (since it is based alphabetically).  Super easy to keep track of.

I still have no idea what to use these awesome pockets for.  When I saw these at Office Depot, I had to get them.  I know I will find out what I could use them for.  Any ideas?

Sick Day

I have been super busy lately.  Sure enough, I got sick.  I have been running non-stop, and I haven't been taking very good care of myself.  So, I'm in bed, with the sniffles, ear aches, sore throat, cough, slight fever, and really stiff, sore muscles instead of being at work.  Even though work has called me non-stop all day, and I have to do a few things on my sick day, I also decided since I'm laying around bored, I should blog!

I'm updating my 365 Day Picture Challenge about once a week.  I try to get the week done on Saturday or Sunday.  Sometimes, I'm off a little bit.  I'm really glad that I've stuck to this project.  Then again, we are still early on the 365 Day challenge.  Hopefully, I can keep it up diligently.

I really want to be more disciplined in my posts.  You might have noticed a handy little button on the right side of the blog that says "31 Days to a Better Budget."  I keep messing up my budget.  Not going to lie, I don't think I have a clue to what I'm doing.  But I found this amazing blog - which put creating a budget in realistic terms.  One small task each day and at the end of the month, you've created your own personalize budget.  The best part is that it is doable.  For my next big project, I will master our budget.  Starting on March 1st, I will be doing the "31 Days to a Better Budget."  Please feel free to join me!
A Time for Everything

In the meantime, I have accomplished a few SIMPLE Pinterest finds.  I will be posting those later today!  I also fixed up our Home Management Binder (which will be posted today too!!).

I hate being sick and not at work - but at least I can occupy my time laying in bed with this blog!! :)

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Big Bug Eyes & Who I Am

I have to share this story about my daddy. When I was a little girl, I had a huge crush on a boy that I hung out with at recess. I thought he liked me too. Being a little first grader, my heart had never been broken before. One day, that boy made fun of me because I had "big bug eyes". I cried. The next day, I didn't want to go to school. I was embarrassed about my big eyes and most of all, I was hurt. I purposely missed the bus. My dad ended up taking me to school that morning. I cried and begged not to go. My dad asked me what was wrong and I told him what the boy said. My dad said "I fell in love with your mom's big brown eyes. Your eyes are beautiful. Don't let some silly boy tell you otherwise. When you are older and that boy falls in love with your big beautiful eyes, you tell him I am sorry but your eyes are too small. Then you bat your big brown eyes at him and walk away." I never forgot that conversation. Love you daddy.

I have seen a few other bloggers doing this lately.  I think it is great.  I'm not the best at writing my emotions without offending someone.  So I try really hard to keep it all to myself.  It's not that I think offensive things... it's just that people don't always understand my point of view and I can't explain it correctly.  Well, here's my chance to voice a little bit of what's been on my mind lately.

My dad is very proud of me.  My mother tells me all the time that she doesn't worry about me because she knows I'll figure out a way.  My parents believe in me and support me.  They think I have a good head on my shoulders, and they know I can accomplish so much with my talents and my drive.  I wish I saw myself from their eyes.

I don't always like myself.  I know, not everyone does.  But I've battled with it a lot.  I feel like a cry baby that whines all the time.  I am my worst critic.  I will call myself awful names.  If I fall behind on anything, I will equate it to my self-worth.  I use to see a therapist.  She told me I was a clinical perfectionist.  If something isn't perfect, I will give up, I quit, I tear myself apart, and my atmosphere greatly affects my feelings and behavior.  And you know what - she's right.

I took Prozac to overcome a lot of emotional turmoil.  I'm not on it anymore - but I do wish I continued it.  I was a much more pleasant person.  I liked myself more.  I was more laid back.  Honestly, I like me better on Prozac.  Doesn't that sound bad?  Someone told me it was addictive, but I wonder "is it addictive because I prefer my life to be that way?"

I used to be such a happy child.  I was grossly optimistic about everything.  I loved everyone.  I made friends everywhere I went.  As I got older, that went away.  When I was active in church, I was in high school.  I always went to church with my family as a whole.  I loved it.  I felt closer to God.  Life was pleasant.  Things just seemed to fall into place.  I was happy again.  I tried to bring church back into my life, but every time I went by myself, it just wasn't the same.  So of course, I fell back into my funk.

Every day, I call myself some awful names.  "I'm lazy."  "I'm ugly."  "I'm mean."  "I don't deserve this."  "I'm ungrateful."  "I'm dumb."  "I'm not worth it."  "I'm hateful and bitter."  "I'd be a terrible mother."  "I'm selfish."

Travis hears me say this.  Today, I fell deep into a funk.  Every once in a while, I will just wake up, and everything will feel wrong.  I will refuse to go outside and be seen.  I won't want to talk to anyone.  I want to bottle myself up and lock me away.  I will sleep until the day passes.  That's what happened today.

I stayed up late trying to find paperwork.  I had a dentist appointment at 7:45 AM this morning.  Sure enough, I slept right through my alarm this morning.  I had a list of things I wanted to get done today - and going to the dentist was number 1.  You want to know how many things on my To-Do List that I actually accomplished today?  ZERO.

I missed the dentist appointment.  "OMG, Liz, you are so unreliable.  Why would anyone want to hire you for a good paying job?"  Boom.  I skipped going to a company that has my dream job available.  I already sent a resume to them, but I wanted to go in and introduce myself and present a portfolio of my work.  I stayed in bed instead.  I looked at my portfolio and pointed out everything that is wrong with it.  I tossed it aside.  It wasn't good enough to give out to someone looking to hire.  I was going to go to the zoo to volunteer today.  Did I do that?  Nope.  I got up out of bed, looked at the time.  I had about 3 hours until the office closed.  "You are so slow, you can't get ready in that time and get there in enough time to get anything done.  Way to go for ruining the day!"

I didn't go.  I looked at myself in the mirror and called myself mean names.  I looked around our room - which needs some serious attention right now since Travis and I have been working non-stop.  It's a mess.  I felt like a terrible wife.  Here I sit, sulking, and Travis is at work busting his butt to make a decent paycheck.  He can't do it all.  So automatically, I hate myself for not helping it out like I should.  I'm not a good wife.  I don't deserve him.

Travis called me to talk during one of his breaks.  I told him I'm having one of my bad days.  He talked to me, saying it was all ok.  The company has my resume.  I can turn my portfolio in next week and fix it up how I want it until then.  It was no big deal.  He said, "oh wow, you missed a dentist appointment!  Who cares?  It happens.  Just reschedule it.  Yeah sure we just lost $25.  But oh well, you didn't mean to!"  I told him how I couldn't get up to even go out to the zoo.  He said "It's VOLUNTEERING!  They said you can go in whenever you want.  You made your own deadlines and schedules.  It's not that big of a deal!  Just go in on another day."  (I found out later that no one was even in the office today anyways because of an event.)  I told him about how I felt like I can't accomplish anything.  Our room is a disaster and I'm just messing things up.  He told me to just do some laundry and relax.  I'm burnt out.  He then invited me to dinner when he went on break just so I could get out of the house.

I'm lucky to have Travis who understands me.  But I haven't told my parents any of this.  I dodge their questions when they bring anything up.  I don't want them to think less of me.  I know that they won't.  I just feel like I owe it to them to be a good daughter - a daughter to be proud of.  Right now, I'm not too proud of myself - so why should they be?  

I have these terrible funks.  I know I don't broadcast my downfalls.  I only try to post the happy stuff.  I only try to post the pleasant things in life because I don't want to recognize these bad moments I have.  I don't want to be a whiner.  I don't know how to overcome this.  The answers seem so easy and simple. Just get up and do what you have to do.  Don't think.  Just do it.  But some days, I can't and I don't know why.

**ETA:  I should clarify so that no one takes this out of context.  When Travis told me to do some laundry, it's because he knows doing laundry puts me in a better mood.  I don't know why, but I enjoy it.  It also needed to get done anyways.  And since our room is a disaster and it's mostly clothes, he knows that our room being a mess is affecting my behavior.  If I, myself, get up and make it better - it puts me in a happier mood.  He was not trying to domestic me or be chauvinistic in any way.**

Friday, February 8, 2013

Getting Busy & Rockin' Out!

Hey all!  I'm just writing this post to inform you that I have not forgotten about this blog!  I have a lot of projects coming up, events to plan and put together, as well as volunteering obligations that are pulling me away.  I will be posting, but not as much between now and April.

So for now, I want to share an event that I put together with the general manager of the hotel.  For only having 2 weeks to plan and get the word out (and having NO marketing/advertising budget whatsoever), we had an amazing turn out!  Not to mention, Travis and I were able to hang out with the band AND hold a Grammy award!  It just so happens that the band had so much fun, they plan on making this an annual event!  YAY!

**More pictures will be posted later on our 365 Day Picture Challenge!**

Monday, February 4, 2013

Baby Fever Is Back

These past couple of days have been such a blast.  On Sunday, Travis and I went to his boss's Superbowl party.  I knew no one.  I was super nervous about meeting my husband's bosses wives.  I was hoping to make a good impression.  Needless to say, all of the wives I met were incredibly sweet and I talked with them non-stop.  I met two ladies who both had a baby less than a year old.  They were so adorable.  Both babies were really good, too.  Neither cried or threw a fit the entire night.  I got to play with the babies and talk to the moms about mommy things.  Neither of them looked at me or spoke to me like I was.... dumb.

Most mothers I know tell me that I don't have a clue what it is like to be a mom.  They will complain about motherhood, they will search for advice - but not from me.  They will solicit advice to me that I never asked for.  I do appreciate their good intentions, but sometimes, I can't help but feel like they think I'm stupid.

Previously, I talked about how I couldn't talk about pregnancy with my friends.  They knew I had gone through a miscarriage, and I felt like I couldn't join in the conversation.  It almost felt like I was outcasted because I don't have a baby.  I couldn't even talk about my pregnancy with them.  I just didn't feel like I belonged.  It was as if I was the big pink elephant in the room that you can't ignore, no matter how much you wanted to.

When I spent the evening talking with these mothers - I never once felt like an outcast.  They talked without inhibitions about their pregnancy.  They embraced the questions that I had and the experiences I have had.  They respected that Travis and I were waiting - even though I have baby on the brain like crazy.  I was never judged or felt like I was being judged.  They were completely accepting, and I didn't feel the way I did with my friends.  I had a great evening!  I think I will be talking with these ladies much more often.

Today, I spent the day with my mother-in-law Becky helping put together the Welcome Home party we were planning for my sister-in-law Amber.  Amber has been in Germany.  You can check out my 365 Day Picture Challenge blog for the post about her party.

As we were out shopping, I kept flocking to the baby stuff.  I couldn't help myself.  I catch myself looking for baby items all the time.  Becky laughed and asked me if there was something she needed to know.  Of course not - we are not expecting.  I'm just longing for a baby super bad.  Becky joked with Travis saying that we'll be having a baby soon.

At the party, the whole family was together.  I love those days.  I love my in-laws.  We use to spend every Sunday at Becky's house with all of Travis's brothers and sisters and our nephew.  I told them how much I had missed it since we've been working a lot and we haven't had the opportunity to visit in over a month.  Travis said, "You know you can go over to my mom's place any time you want!"  And he's right.  I can.  And I would love that.  I think I should do that more.

When we were all together, of course our nephew had everyone's attention.  He's a doll, and he loves to entertain.  Becky made a little comment saying, "Travis and Liz will be next!"  Everyone looked at me, expecting for a follow up of me saying I'm pregnant.  Travis remarked on all the looks, saying, "Thanks mom, now everyone is going to talk."  Haha - it was all in good fun.  Becky responded that I've been all over the baby stuff lately - it's just going to happen sooner than we plan.  ::shrug::  Maybe she's right.  But maybe I can put off my longing for a little while longer until I know for sure that Travis and I will be ok to take on a beautiful little baby (that looks just like Travis :P ).

I know it seems crazy, but I already have ideas for a nursery.  We already have baby names picked out. I just can't seem to help myself.  It's a Baby Fever I've caught!  It's only going to get worse, I know.  So, why not share my Baby Fever with my blog friends.  I like you guys.

Baby Names:
I've always had an obsession with 2 middle names.  I don't know why I love it so much.  But Travis is cool with it, so our kids will have 2 middle names.  We agreed that the first name has to be a name that we both agree on.  If it is a boy, the first middle name will be Travis's choice.  If it is a girl, the first middle name will be my choice.  The second middle name will be the other's choice.  And I love names that have tradition and meaning.

For a boy, we've chosen the name Nathaniel Robert Dean W.....  Nathaniel is Hebrew meaning "Gift of God."  We like it because our child could go by Nathaniel, Nathan, Nate, or even Neil.  Plus, the name is a solid, strong name for when he is an adult.  Travis chose Robert because that is his middle name.  Robert is also Travis's father's middle name.  And Robert is Travis's grandfather's name.  It's a good family name to pass down.  Robert means "bright fame."  I chose Dean for the second middle name because it is my father's middle name.  It isn't a name you hear often.  Not only do I think of my dad, but I also think of a legendary icon - James Dean.  When Travis and I met, we realized we had the exact same poster of James Dean.  Dean Martin is also a legendary member of the "Rat Pack" - which Travis and I find so fascinating.  Dean means "Valley" - which isn't really much of a meaning.

For a girl, we've chosen the name Shelby Ann Barbara W.....  I've always been in love with the name Shelby, and Travis thought it was a good fit with our last name.  I chose the middle name Ann because it is my middle name.  Back in the day, my grandmother and her sister decided to start a tradition.  My grandmother named her first daughter Charlotte Ann (my mother).  My great-aunt named her first daughter Sherry Ann.  My mom had me - Elizabeth Ann.  Sherry had Kelsey Ann.  To keep with the tradition, I will be using the middle name Ann.  Shelby is also a perfect fit because it sounds similar to Charlotte and Sherry.  Travis chose the middle name Barbara after his grandmother who passed away with Lou Gerigg's.  She was such a loving, beautiful, strong willed woman.  She had a good hand in raising Travis to be the man he is today.  Shelby means "sheltered town."  Ann means "Graceful."  Barbara means "Stranger."  If you jumble the meanings around, Shelby Ann Barbara could say:  A graceful stranger in a sheltered town.  I love it.

I find gray walls in nurseries to be so appealing.  I love how they make a room look large and comfy, and all bright colors in the room just pop.  I want my child's room to be bright - but not nauseatingly bright.  I think gray walls, white trim, and white furniture would look perfect for a nursery.  I know if we have a girl, Travis is just going to have to deal with pink.  I have so many stuffed animals and ballerina decor from when I was a little girl.  My daughter will have a ballerina themed nursery.

Less white and add ballerinas - it would be perfect.

For a boy, I just want bright colors.  I love how bright blue and orange look against gray.  When I found this picture, it became my inspiration.  Travis is such a nature, out-doorsy person.  It would only be suiting to our son to have that sort of theme for his room, too.

And it has little blue birds too!  It matches my blog!

A girl can dream....

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Cheap Kitty Litter!

I cannot believe it.  I hit up so many discounts today during our shopping trip.  But here's the best thing we got!
Kitty litter that's 100% usable - just in crappy boxes.

Kitty Litter.

I usually budget $40/month for cat food, kitty litter, and flea & tick medicine for two cats.  Kitty litter can be pretty expensive.  However, Travis was able to pick up 4 boxes of Arm & Hammer kitty litter for only....



Obviously, the boxes are all ripped to hell.  They've been taped together.  Because of that, it cannot be sold on shelves.  It just got destroyed in transit.  So Travis spoke up & bought them.  It's going to take a long time to get through all of these boxes of kitty litter!

So next time you are out shopping and you see anyone stocking the shelves or unloading the trucks, keep your eyes open for products that could be "unsellable" because of damage or defects.  If the product is still good, you can get a super nice deal just by speaking up and saying you'll buy it anyways!  Don't be shy!

Saturday, February 2, 2013

What's in My Purse?

So, I was going to write a blog post about our monthly budgeting system - but my Home Management binder broke.  I'm so sad about that.  I have to get a new one, and I've decided to upgrade it a little bit.  I'll get back on with our monthly budget after I put it back together.  Our monthly budget and weekly budget are done - I just can't bring myself to show you pictures of the mess.  Everything is literally... EVERYWHERE.  And quite honestly, I don't even want to look at it at the moment.

Instead, I've been cleaning and organizing my purse.  Last year, Travis bought me this awesome planner that became my Bible.  It went everywhere with me.  I loved it.  The only negative thing about it was that it was too big for my purse.  I always had to carry it separate.  I didn't want to part ways with it.  However, Travis told me that my Valentine's Day/Anniversary gift can be a new planner designed how I want it.  EEK!!!

After reading the Budget Planner on A Bowl Full of Lemons, I had to compare Filofax with Day-Timer.  I actually preferred Filofax because of the variety of sizes, and you can tailor your planner with a variety of different pages and fillers.  Plus, for $4, you can get the post-its and markers (which I am guessing I could refill on my own if I run out).

Here is my purse.

I love my purse because my dad bought it for me for Christmas.  He had paid attention to something I said that was just a fleeting thought.  During Thanksgiving, I made a little comment about my purse falling apart.  My dad caught that and went and picked out a purse for me!  I love my dad!  And I love the style he picked out.  My mom was with him, but she said she let him pick it out.  He wants to be more involved in my life and my sister's life.  He just feels like he doesn't understand "girl talk."  Well, dad, sometimes guys know exactly what we want!  My dad did a good job.  And now I cannot part with my purse.

The color of my purse is different.  It's like a brown... with black and gold on it.  And I love the texture of it.  So I tried to find a planner on Filofax that was on sale (60% off!!!) and matched as close as possible to my purse.  I also didn't want to spend TOO much on it.  I chose the Dakota Personal in Black.  I tailored it to add the Assorted Sticky Notes - Personal and since my choice did not include a Finance section, I added the Personal Finances Section.  I definitely have plans for this little planner.  I can't wait for it to arrive!  Stay tuned when I post about our weekly budgeting system and how I organize my planners to fit my life.

Back to my purse.

Can you guess what I have??
This is what I always keep in my purse.  They say you can learn a lot about a woman by what she keeps in her purse.  Let's see what we learn about me!

The endless pit.
Of course, we can start off with my wallet.  We don't have to look in there. ;)

Hi wallet!!
Next, I have my weekly/monthly planner.  This planner is strictly for me.  It keeps records of all of my projects at work, my appointments, my bills, my To-Do list at work, at the zoo, and at home.  It's my life.  I get scatterbrained sometimes, so I have to have it all detailed.  I also keep a Rolodex business card wallet.  That's all it has in it - business cards.  I usually keep that for networking and for work purposes.  Always trade business cards when you can!
These things help me not get lost in a busy life.

The little snowman notepad is for all of my silly notes to myself.  Usually, it's used for shopping so that I don't forget the little things.  Or if I have to quickly jot down a number, name, or address - it goes there.  I always go through my notes.  If it involves shopping, I put it in the "Shopping Envelop."  We write how much we budget on the front of the envelop.  Whenever I am out and about, I can stop and pick up any items we need.  It keeps it all organized and easy to find.

My notepad and shopping envelop.

I am obsessed with body spray and perfume.  Unfortunately, my husband is allergic to stronger perfumes, so I can't spray myself until I am outside.  I keep a perfume/body spray in the console of my car and I keep one in my purse.  Right now, I have 2 because the Japanese Cherry Blossom is almost empty.  My back up is Love Spell - which I got for Christmas!  I also keep chapsticks and lip gloss in my purse at all times.  I had to throw away my favorite chapstick because it was nasty.  I never use chapstick enough to use an entire tube thing of it.

I smell pretty... oh so pretty...

I always keep tissues with me - especially during the winter.  I hate runny noses!!  I also have my paycheck, since my employer does not offer direct deposit.  I always keep a cheap calculator (from Dollar Tree!) and pens.  And yes, that green pen IS in fact a pen with pictures and quotes from 'A Christmas Story'.
My pen says, "Fra-gee-lay, it must be Italian."
This always cracks me up.  It's like a pocket in my purse that says, "NERD and GHETTO REDNECK CHICK" all in one!

Nerd & Ghetto Redneck Chick pocket
I carry a pocket knife with me everywhere I go.  It's super helpful!  If I had to use it for self-defense, I highly doubt I would actually use it.  I keep it for more handy stuff that randomly occurs.  Everyone is always shocked that I have a pocket knife.

It used to have a faceplate on the other side, but it broke off.
It was red and said "Country Girl" on it.
Got this beaut in Gatlinburg, TN.
Every woman needs to have the secret pocket.  I carry my bathroom in this pocket.  No joke, tamponsfeminine wipes (seriously, I'd rather use those suckers than go into a bathroom stall without toilet paper!), and LOTS of Midol.  Guys will stop rummaging through my purse to "see what I have" when they hit this pocket.  It's like magic.  You have cash?  Keep it in that pocket.  I highly doubt any dude will dig for it.

It's like Kryptonite for men!

Last but not least, the front pocket.

My front pocket is only used for headphonesa spare lighter, and my cell phones.  I have 2.  This blue dinosaur phone is mine.  My iPhone is my work phone - which doubles as my awesome camera - so it isn't in the picture.

The front pocket accessories.
iPhone not pictured.
And that's all folks.

So here's a comprehensive list of all the stuff I have in my purse every day:

  • Wallet
  • Personal Planner for me only
  • Business Card Wallet
  • Mini-Notepad
  • Shopping Envelop
  • Perfume/Body Spray
  • Chapstick & Lip Glosses
  • Tissues
  • Paycheck
  • Calculator
  • Pens
  • Pocket Knife
  • Feminine Products
  • Headphones
  • Spare Lighter
  • Cell Phones

I carry a lot of junk.  Haha!

ETA: I forgot to mention that in the first picture, you can see a stack of papers with a rubber band around it.  That's for work.  It's temporary.  I have to get labels laminated somewhere.  So I just ignored that.