10 Things to Smile About – August

Better late than never, right? It’s still August so I’m slipping this one in just in time!

Anyway, I can’t believe how fast this month… or even summer has flown by! Actually, the year in general seems to have flown by. It’s funny when I was younger I couldn’t wait to get older so I could do all the things I was told I couldn’t because I was too young and that time seemed to drag on until infinity. But now that I am finally older time is whizzing by so fast I barely know what’s going on anymore.

By taking part in this meme that Emily from Emmy Mom does I’ve had time to really think about the past month and all that we’ve done and what I have to smile about. There really is a lot!


1. Dinner at Aerie at the top of the Grand Traverse Resort. This place is amazing and there was nothing about it that we didn’t love!

2. Spending a weekend at the Grand Traverse Resort. If you haven’t been to this area of Michigan yet…. go! Now. The Grand Traverse region is gorgeous and there is so much to see and do that you won’t want to miss out.

3. I don’t talk about my husband that often around here and he kinda whines about it. But all in all he is a good guy and does a lot for our family and I appreciate it. So, yes. That is something to smile about and not just in August.


4. Being able to get away for a weekend is amazing. Now, camping is not my favorite thing but it is a cheap way to get out of town fast. So we go. BUT… I wouldn’t be doing it without a camper that’s for sure.

5. Swinging with the kids…

6. Toes in the sand at the beach…

7. And that little guy… you never know what he ‘s thinking. But I do love that picture of him. It’s amazing how well an iPhone can take a picture.

football game

8. Football & marching season is back! We had our first football game of the school year and school hasn’t even started yet!

9. The picture of my two oldest girls together just makes me smile and warms my  heart. I love it that they’re such good friends.

10. School! I am looking forward to school and I know that my kids are too. It’s been a long summer and I think that everyone is ready to head back to school.

What has happened in August that makes you smile?

Listable Life – 10 things

I happened upon a post from Nicole over at Moments that Define my Life and that tab has been open ever since. Yes, I did it on purpose… it was a reminder so I could take part in her meme, A Listable Life. Then I forgot life happened, but I was quickly reminded and with a free moment or two I decided to go through with my idea for one of her prompts.

10 Things I’d Rather Do Besides Chores. Easy right? I mean who really likes doing chores? So creating a list with things I’d rather do easy… as a matter of fact I could probably come up with more than 10.

  1. Watch paint dry – Yes, you read that right. Staring at the wall while sitting on the couch is better than cleaning.
  2. Sleep – A nap any time of the day is just about perfect
  3. Bake – I love to bake and although it does lead to more work in the end it does provide a bit of distraction for a while.
  4. Write – If I had a free day (go ahead & laugh we all know it won’t happen) I could spend the day writing post after post and be so far ahead that I would have even more free time!
  5. Play a game – If I didn’t have chores to do around the house I could actually spend more quality time with my kids. Of course that implies that they’d remember me since I’m always busy with work or chores.
  6. Exercise – Go ahead and laugh. You’re right… I won’t do that.
  7. Read – Oh, how I love to read. I have shelves of books…. books I’ve read, books I haven’t read, books that I love so much, and others that are just okay.
  8. Scrapbook – I have a ton of scrapbook stuff and it seems that I never have the time to use it! It’s something that requires a couple of hours of time where I can sit and be creative.
  9. Use my camera – I love my DSLR. I really do… but I have yet to spend some quality time with it to figure out all the settings and what they do and the best uses for all the features.
  10. Shop – New clothes and shoes are always necessary. Right?
  11. Watch movies – Only the ones that are my absolute favorites though.
  12. Prepare for my American Idol audition – Let me tell you…. I sound so awesome in the car when I sing that I will sound even better in person. I just have to have the music playing in the background kind of loud. Think that will be a problem for them?

Alright, so I went over. I told you that I could come up with more than 10!

So what would you do instead of chores?


Eating bon-bons & ending reality tv

10 things you would do if you didn’t have to work.

What a prompt! I mean seriously… I could come up with a whole lot more than 10!

I’ve been thinking about the list a little and this it assumes that I don’t have to work which would mean that we are financially well off. Right? Well the options are endless then aren’t they?

I’ll try to keep things down to earth though, alright? Good, now lets get this list started.

1. I’d lay on my couch eating bon-bons watching old soap operas like Another World, Days of our Lives, and General Hospital. Why? Well first of all I’ve never done it before (the laying around eating bon-bons part that is) and I like the old soaps because I actually know who some of the characters are and they aren’t all 20 yrs old (or younger based on what they look like now).

2. I’d go back to college. I would start taking random classes that sounded interesting to me. I loved the lectures and things like that when I was in school, hearing what the professors had to say, and sharing their life experiences was interesting to me. Besides it’s amazing how many great classes schools offer now! I would just go to be one of those life long learners not going for any specific degree or for a real purpose.

3. Travel…. you had to know that this one was coming! I would travel, but not the entire world because not everything out there interests me. So I’d carefully plan trips around the US, to Ireland, Scotland, Italy, France, and a few other places. The trips wouldn’t be solely focused on large cities either. I’d make sure that I spent a lot of time driving around the countryside checking out all the old castles, ruins, and other historical areas (I love history). Some of these trips would be with the kids and of course others would be without them.

4. I’d get more into this blogging thing that I’ve been dabbling in for a while. I hear that you can really make a go of it if you put a lot of time and energy into it. It makes sense that if I’m not working, the kids are in school, and the husband is at work that I’d have a lot of free time to do this type of thing, right?

5. Have a tea party. Yes. A real tea party in the afternoon with lots of tasty treats, tea, and mimosas. I’d invite all of my friends (the online ones as well as the in life ones) to join me at some fancy location where we’d chat, enjoy our lunch and dessert, and spend the afternoon together. And yes, they would all come because in my world they wouldn’t have to work either.

6. Take over the world. It’s not likely to happen but if Pinky & the Brain can try it every night I figure that I can give it a whirl too.

7. This one is a little more “normal”. If I didn’t have to work I’d just be a stay at home mom. I’d stay with my kids every day, take them to school, play dates, story time at the library, and lunch in the park. I’d volunteer in their classrooms and go on all the field trips, I’d be a band parent (more than I am now) and be on the PTO. I wouldn’t feel guilty anymore when I hear that my son had a major meltdown at the sitters because he was there longer than he normally is. Mommy guilt will be a thing of the past.

8. Redecorate my house one room at a time until it looked like it came from a Better Homes & Gardens magazine. Oh, I’d do the same thing with my yard…. that would take the longest because it is one hell of a hot mess right now!

9. I have 4 kids and only one of them has their baby book in any sort of order. I think that given the right amount of time and willpower I could actually get the other ones started and looking half way decent!

10. Find a way to end all reality TV shows. Why you ask? Well, because they suck. Every single one of them. I live in reality and those shows are so far from real! I like to watch TV to get away from it all… escape…. and reality TV just annoys me. And I know that I can’t be the only one that feels that way. So, I will put them to an end.

Oh… one last thing. I have this pretty nice DSLR camera… I’d learn to use that thing so I could take awesome pictures of my kids and everything around me.

See… I told you there was more than 10 things!

What about you? What would you do if you didn’t have to work?

Mama’s Losin’ It

What I wish I knew

It’s Friday and I’m linking up again for the #SummerBlogSocial!

I read over the prompts again and again, undecided which one to pick. And finally a few thoughts came to me and I knew which I wanted to do.

** If a real life friend approached you and said, “I want to start a blog. Can you give me a list of helpful tips?“, what 10 (or more) things would you tell your friend? **

Yes, I know that almost everyone has done that one but hoping mine will have a bit of information that someone will find useful. Of course now that I think about it some of my thoughts pertain to this prompt as well.

** Finish the phrase, “Before I began blogging, I wish I had known…“. Feel free to substitute “blogging” with “joined Twitter” or whatever other social media phrase is appropriate. **

So when I started blogging there is a lot that I wish I knew and these are things that I would pass on to anyone who told me that they were interested in starting a blog of their own.

So lets get this list started!

1. If you don’t have any knowledge of HTML or CSS then read! There are a lot of great resources out there for you to learn and a good one that I’ve used when in college is the W3 Schools Online Tutorials. Making buttons, header images, and adding widgets to you blog can all require some knowledge of basic web development skills. So read up!

2. Find your color palette. By this I mean figure out the main color that you want to use in your blog and then use a color palette finder like Big Huge Labs.  With a tool like this you can be sure that all the colors that you use coordinate really well.

3.  Pay attention to the layout & design of you blog because if it’s to busy or have contrasting colors/patterns you will start to turn your readers away. Do a little research on layout, design, and some basic usability practices. This is a great article by Jakob Nielsen, a leader in the usability field.

4. Plan. Planning is important and knowing what you want to write about and what your want your blog to be about. Otherwise you can end up aimless and won’t have the direction you need to help you grow your blog the way you want it.

5. Don’t expect miracles. It takes time and hard work to get lots of followers and comments. This is something that I’ve struggled with and was worried about on and off time and again… because I was never sure if I did something wrong or said something to offend people. What I learned is that it’s not always me or what I write and that I just have to put forth a bit more effort.

6. This one naturally follows the previous one. Content is really important. You need to post on a regular schedule and what you write needs to be good. A good subject that is well thought out and well written will get noticed. This is an area that I feel that I’m lacking in and have really made it priority to work on it.

7. Now this one is really important. Be honest. Be true to yourself. And most of all do not steal other peoples content! This will get you shunned and pretty much kicked out of the blogging world faster than you can blink.

8. Find a community that you like and fits what your blog is about. There are so many great ones out there than are really supportive of bloggers that picking one will actually be the most difficult part! I know that at first I joined all sorts of them left and right and tried to keep up and take part in all of them. I quickly found out that it was nearly impossible to do that so I sorted out the ones that helped & the ones that didn’t and today I’m part of the SITS Girls, Blog Frog, and a couple others.

9. Have fun!! Blogging and social media is a ton of fun even with all of the work that’s involved with it. Take the time to enjoy it, make friends, and if you need to take a break once in a while. It’ll all still be there when you come back and you’ll be welcomed with open arms again.

10. Ask for help if you need it. Chances are there will be someone out there that knows the answer or can help you solve your problem. There are countless number of times that I’ve asked for help, offered to help others, and been asked to help. It’s great knowing that you’ve solved someone’s issue and that they’ll return the favor in the future.

So there you have it. What do you think?


No Coffee for Me Please

I haven’t participated in MamaKat’s Writers Workshop in a while so I thought that I’d pick an easy one this week and jump in again!

Writers Workshop

Okay, so some of you may know via Twitter that I’m not a coffee person. I know, I know… blasphemy right! So here’s a list why I don’t.

1. The taste. It’s yucky. I just can’t get past the bitterness of it. I’ve done everything possibly known to man to make it taste better… sugar, cream, flavored cream, white milk, chocolate milk, hot cocoa… you name it I’ve tried it.

** I have not tried french press coffee which I’ve been told is amazing and you don’t get the bitter taste. I’m waiting for someone here at work to make the pumpkin spice again instead of the hazelnut and I may be brave and try it.

2. I LOVE pop! (Yes… I call it pop because that what everyone here in Michigan calls it)

3. Diet Coke is my best friend.

4. Diet Dr. Pepper is also my best friend.

5. Coffee can be addicting! I mean look at all the coffee shops around peddling their wares to you!

6. Coffee can be expensive especially if you go to one of those coffee shops every day! Besides I can get a pop from the vending machine here at work for a mere $0.50! How much does your cup of coffee cost?

7. It’s hot and I don’t drink hot things fast enough. They end up cold to fast.

8. Tea is much better for you!

9. I can open a can of pop or make a cup of tea faster than it takes you to make a pot of coffee.

10. And to quote one of my favorite books, “I do not like it here or there, I do not like it anywhere!”

So there you have my friends! My reasons why I don’t drink coffee.

Ten Things I Believe

Recently I was obsessing over checking out some of my Twitter stats from the links that Gigi over at Kludgy Mom blogged about and found out that I lost some Twitter followers and 3 of them pertained to my most recent post and it got me wondering what in the hell that I did wrong (I’m still pondering this too). Was it because I tweeted to many times about it? Was it really an awful post? Was it just the point at which they decided that they didn’t want to follow me anymore? Who knows. To be honest I was bothered by it for a bit and then after chatting with Gigi and Maria from 1000 Reasons I’m a Bad Mom I felt better. Things like that happen all the time.

I decided that since there wasn’t a writing assignment for Back to School, Back to Blogging that I’d pick something from the Idea Bank.

There are many things in life that I believe and some you may agree with and some you may not. And hopefully I won’t lose more followers because if it!

10 things that believe…

1. I believe that my kids are the most important things in the world.
2. I believe that there is a higher power(s) but I don’t believe in the Christian God.
3. I believe that education is very important.
4. I believe that you can do anything you want.. anything. You just need to put your mind to it.
5. I believe in equality.
6. I believe in freedom of choice.
7. I believe in freewill.
8. I believe that hard work pays off.
9. I believe that love is important.
10. I believe Glee is awesome!

I’m sure that because of this I’ll lose followers. It’s possible that I may even gain some. But this is who I am and I’m being honest.

So, tell me. What do you believe? What makes us different or the same?