Tuesday, June 18, 2013

The Lazy Girl's Clean House

I had saw on Pinterest (and for the life of me I cannot find the pin again) where someone had used Gain fabric refreshers in their tart warmer. I have a candle/scent obsession. I could have a million different scents and still shop for more. However, I do like to have a "signature" scent. You know how you can smell something and someone pops in your mind..and to cover the musk of 3 dogs and 3 small children. For the sake of being frugal I thought I would try it.

I needed detergent and while I was picking some up I noticed that they had a sample pack of their in wash scent booster. Perfect.

I just put them in the bowl of my Scentsy warmer. I know, I know, it says only use Scentsy products...So this is what they looked like. It took a little longer than the wax melts but the scent is AMAZING. It smells like you have been scrubbing your house all day long. I am going on day 3 and the scent is still as strong as the first day. I will for sure be doing this. Perfect for the lazy house keeper like me.

I have lots going on this week and I cannot wait to share it with you guys. There will be lots of pictures. Yay!

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Love Thy Neighbor..Even if She's a Bitch.

Let it be known that I live on an Army post. Filled with Army wives. Filled with hormones. We got here in October and had pretty much everyone on our street moved from then to now. We got a new set of neighbors two doors down. I had "met" her on a Facebook page for wives at our post. Once she moved in I took her over a plant and invited her over to the coffee club I was hosting the next day. Not too long after that someone moved in next to her, so 3 doors down. She had a little girl about the same age as mine and they would play together. Never saw the mother, ever. We get a new neighbor to the right of our house (everyone moved in within a 3 week period) and it's the house that the bus stop is at. I figured since I would be at this woman's drive way every morning I should meet her. She is standing in her driveway, perfect opportunity. Grab the plant, walk over with my friend Marissa and introduce ourselves, blah, blah, blah. Everything was good.

Fast Forward about a month. It's memorial weekend. John is out working on the grill. Jessica and I are inside cooking the other dishes. The older girls are outside in the grass area in front of the house (the loop) and "unicorn girl" was also outside playing with them. Everything is going good and then "unicorn girl" (her bike helmet is a unicorn so that is what Penelope calls her) is shaking her finger in Penelope's face because she wasn't playing duck, duck, goose correctly. So I go to the front door and tell my kids to come inside we are not playing outside with her right now and make them come inside. I was expecting people to arrive at any moment and was still cooking. While John was outside with them  I thought I was doing good by just diffusing the situation by bringing my kids inside. Psh, wrong.

The sun starts going down and we get the fire pit going in the middle of the loop and set up the badminton net up. Samantha's husband was trying to get the net up and us ladies are just standing around talking. Neighbor lady storms out of her house and into the loop, this is about 4 hours from said incident, and ask if her child did anything wrong. I simply said "no, she was in Penelope's face and I don't fool with other people's children so I told my girls to come inside". It later came to my attention that I wasn't talking in a friendly tone which I know is probably true since I really didn't want to talk to anyone other than my guest that I was entertaining. I just wanted to get the conversation over with. Anywho, she goes on to talk about how she hasn't been "welcomed to the neighborhood" and that I had met the other two neighbors and didn't come to met her. I'm not joking. She is truly upset that I did not bring her a plant and say "welcome" to her. Although when her kid fell off her bike and was bleeding I had taken her to her house and gave her to her father and introduced myself and told him what happened...Not good enough, this woman wants a plant.  She wasn't happy with the way that I handled it but she wasn't even there to handle it but okay in her eyes I was wrong. She goes on to call me a "snobby little bitch" and I say "you take care of your kid and I'll take care of mine" and at some point she leaves. I tried my best to stay classy but I guess my classy comes off snobby. 

Moral of the story, take a plant to everyone on the street. I'm stuck in a place now that I kinda want to buy her a TON of plants and leave them on her door to be a bitch that she thinks I am or taking her one realizing either A. She is "that army wife" and she is crazy and you can not deal with her no matter how hard you try or B. She feels guilty because she knows she wasn't watching her child so she took it out on me or C. She was under a lot of stress from moving and had a little breaking point. Right now I just ignore her. If she thinks I am a snobby bitch why try to change her mind? I harbor no bad feelings, she can think what she wants. I'm not going out of my way to try to change someone's mind. It obviously bothers me enough to blog about it so maybe I should bring that up to my therapist friend :). Said neighbor will still get baked goods at Christmas from our family and we will continue to be the same neighbors that we always have been just having more plants on hand.

Be neighborly!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Long Time, No Post

So, a ton has changed since my last post. Like adopted a kid, had a kid, moved and bought the dreaded Dodge Caravan. While John and I are finally in the same state and even under the same roof life is from easy but it certainly is good. 

We moved to Georgia and I LOVE it, like you'll have to drag my dead body out of this state love it. John, meh, not so much. Wendolyn is loving riding the bus and going to school and living down the street for all her friends. (Even if the lady down the street thinks I'm are a "stuck up, snotty snob") Penelope, (yay! for completing the adoption) really doesn't know any different other than the fact she no longer goes to "school". Lastly, Victoria, our little victory. After years and years, 7 but whose counting, we finally got pregnant. Well, my uterus got pregnant. She was such a surprise! After wondering for years what I would look like pregnant I finally found out. And it looks like this...
And yes, I am eating in this picture. 

And now I drive this...
Be jealous. My carriage turned into a pumpkin. From now on you can call me Cinderella. Wendolyn was obviously super stoked about it. 

And now I live here...
Wendolyn has a nice booty photo bomb here. One day when everything in the house is complete I'll show pictures of the inside. 

I have made some super awesome amazing friends but I still miss my Missouri friends (Jodi, Angela this one is for you). The direction of this blog may change and it may not. I am a woman so I cannot make up my mind. I can tell you that I am super stoked to getting back to blogging and crossmyhearthopetodiestickaneedleinmyeye will post weekly. Unless I don't then.....sorry.

I'm not naked, its a strapless dress. Pedi with the girls. Stay classy ladies.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Who is bumping music at 9 in the morning?

 I have two really small cars with two humongous car seats. I drive my Nissan Cube most days, the Beetle is my "fun car" (only because it has a sunroof).  The Cube has led lights just about everywhere in it; cup holders, floor boards, the dash...It's mostly a disco club. You can change the lights to fit your mood, you have 20 colors to choose from. Most people think the car is u-g-l-y and it ain't got no alibi but that's what I like about it.

All that is beyond the point of this blog. I dropped the kids off at daycare, driving to work and I am at a stop light. Normal morning. Then I noticed I could hear a car "bumping". I look around for the stereotypical Neon, Civic, or beater car with a fart pipe on it. I was in a sea of minivans and guys wearing suits in SUVs. I am thinking to myself "What a moron. It's 9 in the morning. Who is bumping music at 9 in the morning?" Light turns green and the cars roll out. I notice the music keeps following me. I look around and nothing. No one is car dancing, no one is mouthing along to a song, nothing. Then my jam comes on. I always change the play list as soon as I get back in the car from dropping the girls off. One time Wendolyn starting singing "lolli lolli pop that body" I realized it is time to start censoring. The bass line kicks in and BAM. I realize I am the moron bumping my music at 9 in the morning. Holy Jesus.

Should I be embarrassed? Should I turn it down? OMG, can they see the car seats? I'm such a loser. But it's my song. I love this song. &^%* it. Turn it up.

That's when the club starts. Totally inappropriate songs about hooking up, getting drunk and the occasional use of illegal drugs. I pretend my coffee cup is my martini glass and car dance my ass off. This is not "mommy" of me at all. Not that I am a typical soccer mom by any means of the imagination. I feel like I should be more adult and listen to more Jewel and Jack Johnson (I do love that kind of music too) however, this mama likes a little gansta rap too. Nicki Manaj starts and I am right there with her. I'm going after it at this point. Screw you Dodge Caravan, I see you looking at me. Now I am throwing up hand signs that I have no clue what they mean. Okay, I've gone too far. Tone it down.

I know that if I was that poor lady in a minivan (my heart goes out to all the drive a minivan) I would be calling myself an idiot and making fun of myself. I didn't care. How happy I was and the mood it made me in was so worth it. Laugh at me. I'm glad I could entertain you and make you smile. Nothing is like when you are jamming out and the people around you join in. Once, I had a friend with me and we were rocking out, to the point the car was shaking and the people across the intersection started dancing too. We had a dance off right there in the car at one of the busiest intersections. It was a blast.

My point being, to everyone in the sea of white sedans and black minivans I was an idiot. To me I was being myself and I was making myself happy. Once I embraced it I noticed all the other 20 something moms and them bumping and singing. I smile. Oh the simple things in life, bumping in the morning and mid-afternoon. Who knew this is what my life would become? So pump, pump the jams. Gotta keep on moving. Fist pump, Pop it, lock it, I don't care. Be happy, that's all that matters. And if I see you, you better believe there is going to be a dance off. Bring it.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Don't Forget to Brush Your Face!

Alright domestic divas, who wants a facial for free? Over the summer of 2009 I was getting facials every other week trying to control my acne. I have more acne now then I ever did as a teenager. It's very annoying and disheartening. It's bad enough that I am 27 and could pass for a sophomore in high school; I don't need the pimples for affect. Every time I had my facial, the lady kept tell me that I really should by a Clarisonic. Which she used everytime I went and saw her. It is basically a electric face scrubber. It was a little larger then an electric razor. To be honest, I didn't really like it when she used it. She would go over my nose and I would cringe. My eyes watered, all I could think about was how bad I wanted to sneeze. It was borderline painful. Not to mention this was over 200 bucks at the time.

I never noticed such a dramatic effect that I was in my "omg, omg I have to have it" mode. Really all I thought about with it was how much space it would take up and that I had no where to charge it at. Months go on and I just lived with my breakouts and would randomly try something new. Mostly if a bottle reached out to me from a shelf. I admit it, I go for packaging. Some products helped, most ended up being pitched when I purged my bathroom. Then, I found something on YouTube that changed everything.

I don't know if you watch a lot on YouTube but I am into the hair and make up tutorials and the haul videos and that kind of thing. This one video I ran up on was about exfoliating your face. I clicked on it and watched. She made her own paste and then applied it with, you'll never guess, an electric toothbrush. I'm serious. It was basically a small Clarisonic. I was so mad that I never thought of this before. This girl is a genius. I happen to have an Oral B toothbrush that I never use. The head of the toothbrush just seems too big and my teeth never really felt any cleaner than my manual toothbrush. I grabbed my Clean and Clear blackhead scrub (which I absolutely love as is) and my Oral B. I lightly wet my face with luke warm water and rubbed the scrub all over. Then I took my toothbrush and started on my nose and worked my way out. It was kinda painful. The bristles were so hard! Then I remembered I didn't wet the toothbrush. So, I wet the bristles and then started again. It was so much better. Anytime it felt like it was getting too rough I would wet the brush. I spent 3 minutes on my entire face. I rinsed the scrub off and my face had good even hyperemia, that's a fancy word for the blood that comes to the ssurface when you exfoliate or get slapped. I could automatically see a difference on my face. My nose was so smooth and the pores were visibly smaller. A-mazing.

If you have an electric toothbrush like I did but you use it for brushing your teeth, go out and buy a replacement head that you can use for your face. And if you can get it in a soft bristle get that one. I am telling you, do this once a week and within a month you will see dramatic results. I did anyway and I totally recommend you try it. You will have that "glow" to your skin that no product can do alone.

So spend the 195 bucks on a Clarisonic or 25 on an Oral B or any other electric toothbrush and get your goddess on! If you have a great homemade facial or bath product that you would like to share, leave it in the comments. I LOVE trying these recipes out. Remember you are beautiful person!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

I heart Walgreens.

Here is something that I never thought would happen. I am madly in love with a drug store. And not for it's drugs. I have been avoiding Walmart like it is the plague. I have only been 3 times since November. I didn't get any major Christmas gifts there. Only stocking stuffers, which was a couple of DVDs. I have been lucky that an AMAZING grocery store has opened up in walking distance to my house. If it wasn't for trees I would be able to see it. I get all my groceries there. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it. sigh. So in love. Did I mention it has a Starbucks in it? I also have a Walgreen's pretty close. Not walking distance but it takes about two minutes to drive to it; four if you get stuck at the light. I don't know what or how my obsession got started but it's pretty hot and heavy.

Actually, I do know. It started with Sissy getting sick and I had to pick her up from daycare. I knew I was running low on diapers and needed some baby fever reducer. Since it was on my way back from the daycare I just ran in. Sissy was passed out and so I put her car seat in the cart and went to the aisle that I needed. So, while I was there, they had this "jingle cash" thing going on. I saw the signs but didn't really know what it was about. Since Sis was asleep, I thought, I could browse around. The store wasn't that big, it wouldn't take long at all. I'm roaming, aisle to aisle. This lady notices my box of Huggies. She comes up to me and tells me about this sale on Walgreens brand diapers. She goes on and on about how her daughter loves them. I ask questions like "how are they on sensitive skin?" things like that. I didn't really want to buy the generic diapers. I know how most feel from working at a daycare, it's like sandpaper. She takes me over to the aisle and we look and she is opening her sale ad and points out that they are buy one get one free. I figured I would humor this lady and buy them. Plus bogo? How can you pass that up? I could take one pack to daycare and keep one at home and it wouldn't be long and they would be all used anyway. If it broke her bottom out I was out eight bucks. Not the end of the world.

THEN, she tells me that if you get six packs then you get 25 dollars in Jingle Cash. Which was like 25 dollars that you could spend at Walgreen's. And I'm not talking like Gymbucks from Gymboree where you have to spend 50 to get the 25. You could pick out 25 dollars worth of goodies and use the coupon and not spend a dime. I am not even joking. So, how it worked was, you spent 25 dollars you got 5 dollars Jingle Cash, 50 dollars you got 10 JC (as in jingle cash, not Jesus Christ), 75 dollars you got 15 JC and 100 dollars you got 20 JC. I didn't really think too much about it. I am notorious for getting things like this and NEVER using them. I just keep roaming. I find myself thinking, "What a fantastic stocking stuffer? Mom would like this. Wendi would love this. Sissy could get this as a gift from Wendi". I ended up spending over 100 dollars. But I got SO much more. I got both girls several toys, lots of candy stocking stuffers, two popcorn tins, lots cleaning supplies, and some beauty supplies for yours truly. Between the sale they were having and the already low prices it was amazing. That is when it started.

John comes home from Alaska for Christmas. The weekend he gets there we are off to Kansas to spend Christmas there. Then it hits us. We didn't buy dirty Santa gifts for his family. Mostly I was putting it off hoping we wouldn't be going to Christmas at his family. I know. I'm horrible. Money was pretty tight at this point. It cost almost 2,000 dollars for his plane ticket, plus it was Christmas. And we don't put anything on credit. All cash money, baby. Then it hits me. I have 25 dollars in Jingle Cash. BAM. Walgreens, go! We ended up getting his bothers popcorn tins, and one of our dirty Santa gifts and some roadies (i.e. snacks for the road) and spent under ten bucks. I mean come on! That like never happens.

I found somethings that I tried that I really, really liked! The diapers were okay. I didn't really like the print that was on them. Petty, I know. But I do get them from time to time. Sis has fairly sensitive skin and they didn't break her out at all. I was impressed. I have several products that I am going to do a review on in later blogs. You will be amazed how much you can save and cut out Walmart trips by shopping at drug stores and grocery stores only. I don't come home with frivolous things that I didn't need just because I walked up on them. That little rollback smiley face isn't there to break my will. We think that I save about 25-45 dollars every trip. Even though the grocery store is priced higher on some things, we save by not bringing home the crap Walmart throws at you. (If you can't tell I am a bit of an impulse buyer.) Not to mention you are spreading your money to multiple companies. I really urge you to go check out your local Walgreens. If you live in a city that has more that one, go to all of them. Not every store carries the same thing. I know when I go back home, I love me some Rite Aid. CVS is great too.

Leave a comment or email me some of your favorite drug store finds!

Sunday, January 30, 2011

I Send my Kids to Daycare, and I Don't Feel Guilty.

Okay. Here's the deal. I work a part-time job at a department store and I'm also a massage therapist. I don't really work that much. Max....3 days a week. I haven't even worked since Christmas, until this week.

Some may know that my husband is in the Army. He is stationed at Ft. Wainwright.....Alaska. I live in the mid-west. We are 3589.32 miles apart. We haven't lived together since 2009. Now, I can here it coming..."why in the hell are you not living with your husband?". Answer: Both our daughters were in foster care. And by "were in foster care" I don't mean, we put them in foster care. I mean, we were their foster parents. First we had Wendolyn in our care. We knew from the start that we would be able to adopt her but, we had no idea it would take 2.5 years. John had his orders for AK before the adoption was ever in sight. Wendi, aka Wendolyn, was placed with us at 13 months old and he left when she was 18 months old. We adopted her when she was 3 years and 2 weeks old. Ummmm, yeah. Ridiculous. Because she was a foster child she could not leave the state. We have a house to sell and we knew he was deploying soon after he got to AK. I would rather be here where I love and am familiar. As opposed to be in -30 degrees, by myself and not know anyone. And he did deploy the month after he got there.

So while John is away and before Wendolyn is ever adopted her birth mom is pregnant again. Then I had the internal fight with myself to take custody of this baby too. I had a really hard time. I knew in my head that it was going to be so draining. 2 kids+1 person=mayhem. I have no family here. None. Mine are 6 hours away and John's is 4. It was me and only me. It still is me and only me. At the same time this was my chance to have a newborn. Something I never thought would happen. They were sisters, half, but in my eyes they are biologically sisters. Long story short, with a lot left out since I can't say much cause she is not adopted yet, we took her. How could you not?

So here we are. John is leaving for Afghanistan in April and I have one adopted child and one foster child and a house that has yet to be put up for sale. (I will never buy a house again until he is retired. Biggest mistake of our life..thus far) Same spot as 2009.

Wendolyn was already in daycare because I was going to school full-time. When Sissy came along I was still in school, so she had to go to daycare as well. I would keep Sissy at home with me the days I didn't have school. She was only 2 weeks old when she started going. WAY to young but the school I was attending wouldn't let me miss anymore. I took both of them out of daycare for a while since I wasn't working. That's when it went all down hill.

I was the worst mother. Ever.

I was so stressed and depressed and just generally over come with anxiety. I was a zombie. I never left the house because I was so scared that they would act up in the store and I would look like the 13 year old with 2 kids. So that lasted 2 weeks.

I needed daycare. I needed time to be me and do normal big person things. I wanted to see the inside of a grocery store. Know what the sun felt like. Not hear crying or screaming. Just some Whoosa.

One week later. Calm. Peace. And a shower.

I have family members that said it was horrible of me and that it is my "job" to raise these kids. Ummm, no. I love being a mom and I love my children but I cannot do it alone. I don't know how single mothers can work enough hours to make enough money to live on and raise small children. I have the utmost respect for these women. I want to kiss their feet. I totally under stand the saying "it takes a village to raise a child". Never more true than it is today in my life.

Why do I not feel guilty? Many reasons.

1. They learn SO much. They come home with things that leaves me saying "WTH?". Wendi could sign 12 words by the time she was 18 months. Signs that she really knew what they meant and could use them in context. I know she was trying to sign other words but I had no idea what she was saying.

Not only can she sign. She can speak Spanish. Like for real. That makes her what? Tri-lingual?

Days of the week? She knows them. Weather? oh yeah. Sing songs? What song ya wanna hear? This kid is a juke box. Body parts? More than I would like her to know. I'll tell you about the nipple incident another day as well. The list goes on.

2. She is a social butterfly and so is Sis. This has pros and cons. Stories to come in later blogs. It's obvious they favor Mommy (which I love) but there is no hyperventilating and kicking and screaming when leaving them in class. It's apparent that Wendi has her true BFFs. I think about how cute it would be if Wendi and Tryten find each other on Facebook while in college and get married. So sweet.

3. You can dress them in super cute clothes, and there is someone to compliment on it.

4. They enjoy it. Wendolyn will ask if it's a school day. Every once in a while she will want to stay home, and I let her. We go to tea rooms and have lunch, do a little shopping. This also allows me to have one on one time with each kid.

5. I love doing holiday parties in Wendi's classroom. She gives out super awesome goody bags.

6. I have really become like family with these ladies. They know these kids like I do. They have went above and beyond what a normal worker would do. I know that they love both girls. It makes it very easy to trust them.

7. This list could really go on and on.

8. I am a much better mother. I have time to myself. I can get all the housework done and the running in town. When we are together we really can enjoy that time. It's TRUE quality time and not just being in the house together.

I know some people will always be anti-daycare and some just want to be the person with their kid day in and day out. I totally respect that. And I am not saying that I haven't had some throw downs with the staff. That's a blog within it's self. I just refuse to let these people make be feel guilty on how I chose to send my kids to daycare. This works for us and we are okay with it.

 If John was still here I would keep Wendolyn enrolled but probably just have Sissy in part time. Or Sissy may be full time as well. I just don't know, hard to say. I just want all the other "stay at home" moms to feel that it is okay for you to send your kids to a preschool or daycare. A happy mom makes a happy family. It's perfectly fine for you to need "me time" or just want to get a pedicure or go shopping...alone. I know when my husband is around the last thing I want to do is leave him at home with the kids. I want to spend time with him too! It's the best when he is home on a weekday and we can have "day dates". The movie is cheaper and no one is hardly there and you can make-out and feel like a kid again and then go get the little ones from school. A-mazing. You are so much more revived and ready to take on the demands of being a domestic goddess and embrace the poopy daipers and constant request for a sippy cup refill. Embrace the fact that we cannot do it "all" but we can do more than enough. That's what makes use modern domestic deities.