Saturday, December 31, 2011

Happy New Year!

I knocked one goal off of my 2012 list by running a 5 k today! I even shaved 9 minutes off my time! Yup, I beat myself!! It's all up from here!

I hope that you all have a blessed new year!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Where is Winter?

It certainly is NOT in Central Illinois! Yes, we had 2 inches of snow earlier this week but today it is 50 degrees and not a cloud in the sky! I am loving it!

Today was a rest day from running in preparation for my first (running) 5k this Saturday so the Diva and I went to the park for some much needed play! We walked to the park and played with new friends then walked home. I would say this is the perfect day but then I get to thinking: where is winter? What is in store next? Will the next snow be the BIG ONE? I'll worry about that later! Have a Happy New Year everyone!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011


This past July, I set a goal to run a 5k in 2012 and I am happy to say that I will beat that goal by one day! Yes, I have participated in a 2.5k and a 5k, however, due to my knee surgery I was only able to walk them! Saturday December 31,2011, I will ring in the new year running in the Frozen 5k with the Frozen Chosen team. I am nervous and excited all at the same time.

My New Years resolution is to keep putting one foot in from of the other at a fairly quick pace! I want to add to my 40 pound weight loss by losing an additional 25 pounds and, of course, run more 5Ks. I will be healthier at 44 (my birthday is in May) than I was at 24! I will show my little Diva that it is never to late to get healthy!

I have already overcome so much: 40 pounds gone, knee surgery & a Cardiac Ablation that has me feeling like a new woman! I've got this and I will keep going!

What are your New Years resolutions or goals?

Tuesday, December 20, 2011


Yesterday we traveled to Springfield for my heart procedure. I was nervous but OK for the most part! I had to check in by noon so we left home around 9:30 to allow us to find St. John's since we had never been there! We found it with no problem!

Once there I went through check in and labs before being taken to another floor where the procedure would be done. Around 12:30 a nurse took me back to prep me which took about 45 minutes then the Knight got to come hang out with me until they took me back for the procedure around 3:15. By this time I was just ready to be done so I could eat!

The room they took me to was full of computer monitors and high tech gadgets. They started prepping and before I knew it we were starting. The kicker is that I was awake for the whole procedure! I kept my eyes closed, of course, but I heard and felt it all!!

They gave me adrenaline, which my heart beat like crazy! At on point it felt like my heart was doing the wave. Then they started burning the troubled areas. I felt that too but it felt like really bad heartburn! I winced once and the anesthesiologist gave me some more of my feel good cocktail! He was awesome!

Two hours later, it was over and I was on my way to my recover suite. It was a great little private room! As soon as I was in, the Knight was by my side. I had to lay flat for an hour and then I got dinner! Not a snack but a full blown dinner that I chose before surgery!

After dinner, I walked a lap around the nurses station and by 7:00 PM I was on my way home! The procedure was a complete success with on 2% chance of recurrence. Pretty good odds if you ask me!

The one question I made sure the Knight asked Dr. Mouton was: when can I run again? The answer: Wednesday!! I was so excited to hear this news since I have a 5K on the 31st!

I am going to leave you with a photo, taken the night before my procedure, taken at our Candlelight service. My friend, Jill, signed the words as I sang Labor of Love! Photo by Joey Bright.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Looking for a New Phone? Try the LG DoublePlay

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of LG DoublePlay™ for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

The LG DoublePlay™  has everything that you are looking for in a phone!  You start off with dual (yes I said dual) customizable screens that operate in tandem or separate!   The full QWERTY keyboard and Swype make texting a breeze and you can update Facebook while surfing the web or texting (every multitaskers dream come true)!  Add to that a 5 megapixel camera with a flash and 720p HD video recorder and you have every media junkies idea of fun and makes it super simple to share your precious memories with the ones you love!

There are multiple messaging options including Cloud Text and Group Text that give LG DoublePlay uses the ability to send and receive texts from a PC or Tablet.  Now you can share content faster and more efficiently than ever before!  Still not convinced?  How about the LG DoublePlays Android 2.3 with access to the Android Market!  This feature allows you to customize up to 7 home screens and up to 9 touchscreen shortcuts which makes for simple one touch navigation!

I know that my phone is the center of my social networking!  I would be lost without it because I email, text and update Facebook all from my hand held device!  If you are looking for a new phone then you must check out the LG DoublePlay™ .

This phone is available exclusively from T-Mobile.

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Saturday, December 17, 2011

I Am NOT The Biggest Loser!

I did come in 13th out of the 85 remaining contestants that came to the final weigh in!  My final weight loss for this 10 week challenge was 16.2 pounds for a total weight loss of 36.8 pounds!  I am pretty happy right now!

I still want to lose another 20 so I will continue with my diet and exercise and hopefully be at my goal weight by my birthday on May 31, 2012 when I turn 44!!  The best feeling was having my body fat taken and being in the normal range for my age and weight!!  That really made me happy!

I will continue to update you on my journey!  I just hope to survive Christmas!!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Zenni Optical Can Make Your Holiday Brighter!

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Zenni Optical for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

Did you know that Zenni Optical has awesome eyewear in stock and waiting for your order?  Many of the frames come in festive holiday colors that will make you look styin' this holiday season!  Better than that Zenni Optical has cheap eyeglasses  that will fit your budget!  Just imagine what you could do with all that cash that you save?  Your friends and family will be impressed with your gift giving ability and all because you saved a bundle on your eyeglasses .  My daughter wants the DIsney Dream Castle plus all the princess dolls and everything else that she sees so I could probably do this with the cash that I save!

484021 Full Rim Acetate Frames with Design on Temples

I think that these frames are very cool and would look great on me!  Best of all.............they are only $29.95!  It doesn't get much better than that!  There are frames to fit every budget and every style from the plain to the outspoken. Maybe you could get two or three pairs so you have frames to fit your every mood!   Head on over to Zenni Optical and let me know which frames would make your Holiday season brighter!  Leave me a comment and let me know!

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Monday, December 12, 2011

Need YOUR Help!

Ok, you all know I am doing the KC Summers SlimDown Challenge and I need you to go like my facebook video!  Each like gets me a point so I need all that I can get!  As of last Tuesday, I was at 12% of the 20% maximum for weight loss points.  In other words, I have lost 12 of my 31 pounds during this challenge!  Here is the link to my video .  I am giving away my secrets to my success over the next three days!  Thanks for all of your support!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

The Packit: A Lunch's Best Friend

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of PackIt for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

I remember taking my lunch to school in a sack or an old tin lunch box with an ice pack to keep the contents cold until lunch.  However, when lunch time came, my lunch was always warm.  Lucky for me I didn't get food poisoning!  Today, my little Diva has a safer option that does not include an ice pack and can keep her lunch cold for up to 10 hours!  The PackIt lunch boxes are every parents dream come true!

Picture 17

My Diva would love a hot pink one to carry her lunches in and I would like one for my healthy snacks when I am out and about!  The best part is that if you buy one now for $19.95, you get one free!  What a deal for a family on the go!  You can use them for more than lunches too!  They make a perfect tote for baby bottles on the go!Advertisement

What would you use a Packit for?  Leave me a comment and let me know!  Maybe you have an idea that never occurred to me!  Then head to the PackIt lunch boxes  website and check out their great offer and get yours today!  This would make a great gift for the person on the go!


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I am down in the best way possible! I went to the doctor yesterday for a recheck of my cholesterol and stepped on the scale only to find that I have lost another 7 pounds since November 22nd which puts me at a total of 31 pounds down! Yay! Only 25 or 30 more to go! They called me yesterday afternoon with my test results and they were down but not enough to take me off of the meds just yet! My overall cholesterol was 195 down from 269! My triglycerides and LDL were both still about 19 points high so I am on the meds until my June recheck! I can promise you this: I will be off the meds in June and I will have reached my goal weight by then! You can hold me accountable! On the running front: I am up to two miles on the treadmill every morning and still doing my strength training to make myself stronger! I have a 5 K on New Year's Eve that I will be ready to run, unless the cardiologist says no and in that case I will walk it! I am going to be healthier at 44 than I was at 24!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Stand Up for Family

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of American Family Insurance for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

American Family Insurance is sponsoring a comedy special that the whole family can enjoy!  Stand Up For Family gives you the opportunity to watch with your whole family  without the worry of anything R rated popping up!  I don't know about you but I appreciate the clean comedy because my kids are 4 and 19, which makes it hard to find something that is "safe" for all of us to watch.

The show is hosted by BIll Bellamy and showcases some of today's hottest comedy stars sharing funny personal life experiences and sharing the humor of every day experiences!  You can watch the videos provided by AmFam and be reminded of the importance of family and how those closest to us, shape our live in sometimes humorous ways!  I watched all of the videos and was laughing so hard that I was crying!  The videos reminded me so much of some of the crazy times in my family which is great to remember since many of the family members who contributed to those crazy experiences are no longer with us!  Stand Up For Family is sure to keep you in stitches and remind you of all the crazy moments in your family this Holiday season!

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Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Hard Ball of Sweat

That's my new nickname from the Diva! I have earned it since I sweat like a big dog when I work out and she would know since she is my workout partner! We have a great time doing it!

A lot has changed since my last update! The doctor released me to run again!! I am more than a little excited! I just started training to run my last 5K of the year on New Years Eve! I am so excited that I recruited a team to run with me. Most of them are folks that I met through the KC Summers Slim Down Challenge. We even have a name, the Frozen Chosen!

I know the next question on your mind is: how is the challenge going! It's great! At the beginning of November, when I went to the doctor, I was down 25 pounds! As it happens, the Diva broke the scales so I can only weigh at the doctors office! I go to see the Cardiologist this afternoon so I will have an update soon! I am hoping that I will have lost another 5 pounds which will put me under my second goal and I can move on to the third goal!

Since I am on the run again I will leave you with a picture that pretty much describes me to a tee!!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Cuteness Overload!

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Puppies vs. Babies for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.



We all know that puppies and babies are both equally cute but now they are trying to figure out who YOU think is cuter in a Puppies vs. Babies online contest!  This is the throw down showdown of the century and it all comes down to your opinion.  You have until November 23, 2011 to cast your vote and the winning puppy or baby will get a $5,000 prize!  Not too shabby for just being cute.

I know for a fact that my little Diva or one of my three adorable pooches would have won for sure (yes, I am more than a little biased when it comes to the cuteness factor) but the entry deadline for Puppies vs. Babies is past so I had to go and scour the contestants carefully to choose the one that I think will take home the grand prize and I chose........ I'm not gonna tell so you can make your own choices! Just be prepared for cuteness overload because there are some real cuties in both categories that are waiting for your vote! Now it's time for you to do your duty and get out there and vote for the cutie of your choice!  Happy voting and don't forget to leave a comment in the comments section  letting us all know who you voted for!


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Friday, November 4, 2011

Shout it from the Roof!!

Since I am being accountable to the whole world and since you all started this journey with me, I thought I better update you all! What better way to do that than with a picture!

I am down 24 lbs from last year but my journey just really began 6 months ago tomorrow! Most of you know that I was sidelined when I tore my ACL but I continued to eat right and contained to lose! Next week, I will be 3 months post Op and my journey will once again be kicked into high gear when I am able to workout even more and get back into running! I am so excited!

I walked a 2.5 K a couple of weeks ago and have 2 - 5 Ks coming up. I will be walking them but at least I will do it!! I am so excited that this program is working and I encourage you all to do what you need to do to be healthy!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Sunday, October 23, 2011


I always say that I will not sign my kids up to multiple activities at once because I do not want to over-schedule them or myself and then I go and do it to myself anyway! Yesterday was a prime example. I was up at 6:00 AM to go to the nature center and walk 2 miles before heading to EIU to compete in my first organized race. The race was a 2.5 K so just about 1 1/2 miles. Sounds easy right? NO! There were multiple hills involved! I only walked since I am still not released to run and I finished in just over 26 minutes and came in 204 out of 249! I finished and I am happy with my accomplishment!

Immediately following the race I made my way to Lincoln Log Cabin for a family shoot with some great clients. I finished the shoot around 12:30 and took lunch to my family then the Diva and I headed home so I could shower and relax before doing a Senior shoot at the nature center! I was exhausted and I knew I would not make it through the Cardinals game! I was right! I saw one home run by Pujols and woke up at the end of the game just in time to go to bed! My body hurt and I knew that I had overdone it! My knee was stiff and I was walking like I had a fresh injury (I don't but just saying).

I will never again do that to myself! I know my limits now and, unfortunately, I can do less now than before because of my knee! I need to rebuild my strength and stamina but I need to take it slow as not to re-injure the knee. I will be walking 2 more races this year and both are 5 Ks. There will be no shoots on those days! I have learned my lesson!

Here is my race number! It is on the refrigerator to remind me that "I did it" and "I will do it" again!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Straight Talk is the Answer

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Straight Talk for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

My son started college in August and shortly after we discovered that our "big" carrier does not cover the area that he is in so he is always "off network".  As a parent this is very discouraging because we need to be able to keep in touch but the "off network" charges are killing the budget so we started looking for the answer to our prayers and found it in Straight Talk!  We are talking big savings here!  For only $45 a month he can get The power of Android and I can feel the savings in my pocket!  The unlimited plan works for a busy college guy and the best part is, there are NO overages to come out of my pocket so I Feel Richer with Android


Unlimited means just that!  Unlimited calls, texts and picture messages which every teen requires in a plan!  Of course, there are cool phones which is another big requirement for the new guy on campus!  Smart phones, touch screen, camera, music, app and Bluetooth enabled and the list goes on!  And the cherry on top is:  no activation, reactivation or termination fees and NO contract!  Are you convinced yet?  Check it out and save yourself some cash!

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Got The All Clear!

Maybe not the ALL clear but good enough for me right now! The surgeon gave me the go ahead to walk a couple of 5 Ks! I am so excited! This morning I walked just over 5 K and will continue my training on Monday! My first one is actually a 2.5 K so it won't be that bad.

I return to the Doc on November 15th and am hoping and praying that I get the thumbs up to start some light jogging! I am finally seeing the light at the end of this long tunnel. I must admit that depression had set in and I was becoming bitter about the whole knee thing and then suddenly things are looking up again.

I have decided that walking across the finish line with my head held high will be a big accomplishment and next year when I can run, it will be a whole new achievement! No excuses, folks! Get out there and move!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

No Frankenstein Here!

Physical therapy is going slow but sure!  I make good progress every week and am now at 113 degrees of flexion.  She wants me at 120 degrees before I see the doctor next Friday and I am pretty sure I will be close!  The main goal was for me to quit walking like Frankenstein, which I have done!  Go me!!!  I can even walk up and down stairs like the rest of y'all instead of peg-legging it!  Franky has left the building and will not be returning!

So the next step is to get back to the weight loss and I am jumping in full force on Saturday when a local car dealer kicks off the KC Summers Slim down!  There is a $10,000 grand prize at steak here folks!  The program runs for 10 weeks and there is a point system so anyone can win, even if you don't lose the most weight!  It's all about getting our community members healthy!  Here are a couple of videos detailing the contest!  Of course, you will all be with me on my journey!  Stay tuned!

Now you know what I know!  I am excited to be part of the crew on Saturday that kicks it all off!  If you are in the area, please feel free to join us and get in shape!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

I'm Here!

I am still around but with PT three times a week and a little Diva, who demands my time, I have just been busy! Today I decided to pay some attention to my blog and my house (very neglected)! The house is done so here I am!

PT is going well! I went back to the Ortho on Friday and got to lose the leg brace unless I am on uneven ground! I was so excited to get out of that thing! I think it was hindering me anyway and my Therapist agreed! I now have 106 degrees of flexion and I can walk up a flight of stairs like a normal person! My hamstrings are still weak so I am working hard to improve them! The big news is that I can finally ride the bike! I did 15 minutes yesterday and will up that to 30 today! I am so excited just to be able to feel like I am getting a workout again!

I joined a Biggest Loser Challenge here locally to help me lose and keep me motivated! I have continued to lose during this recovery time but now that I can do a little more, it will help! The challenge is only 10 weeks but will help through the holidays that are quickly approaching.

In other news: the kids are back in school and both doing great! I miss the Moody Teen but he is adjusting to college life well! The Diva loves school and would live there if she could! I am just glad they are both happy!

That's all I've got for now! Talk to y'all soon!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

The Good With the Bad

We gotta take the good news when we can and take out lumps when we can't. Today was one of those good and bad kind of days.

The good: physical therapy is going great! I can now bend my knee to 96 degrees so they are letting me get on the bike tomorrow! This is one thing I have been working toward since I know, realistically, it will be 6 months until I can run again! The bike is a win for me! Then at my doctor visit for my heart, I found out that I reached my first weight loss goal! Score another point for me! I have lost 2 pant sizes! Go me!

And now the bad: I have no pants that fit and shopping is impossible with the brace on! During my doctor visit she ordered a 2D echo of my heart and is sending me to see a cardiologist to get some answers about this SVT and preventing it. Finally, they told me my blood pressure is low at 104/80! I thought it was good but she said no! Sigh......

I am guessing the blood pressure is a result of losing weight, getting in shape and eating right. But what do I know?

Hope you all have a blessed week and we will talk again soon!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Cruel Summer

My summer has not been the greatest in recent history! First, on June 5th, I had an extended bout of SVT that sent me to the hospital where they stopped (and restarted) my heart with a drug called Adenocard. That led me to cutting caffeine out of my life and eating healthier. The next step was to workout so I started strength training and then running to prepare for a 5K.

Everything was going great! The extra pounds were falling off and the running put me in a wonderful frame of mind. Then 4 weeks into my training I tore my ACL while running with a dog, who shall remain nameless (Capone). The tear required surgery, which occurred on August 10th and went well! I have been in Physical Therapy for two weeks and have already recovered 80 degrees of flexion (only 50 more degrees to go)!

Then this morning, as I am waking, my heart goes into SVT again! This required another trip to the ER and another dose of Adenocard to bring my heart rate down from 205 beats per minute to 80 beats per minute in a matter of 2 seconds! Not the way I wanted to start my Tuesday! This summer has truly been a cruel joke! I am so ready for it to end and for fall to begin! Summer, you are officially booted from my life and you can take all you cruelness with you! Good riddance!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Monday, August 22, 2011

12 Days Post Op

I finally ditched the crutches and the cane and my brace is no longer locked! I know it seems like a little thing but it is such a big accomplishment for me! I also started physical therapy today. I was a tad scared that they were going to throw me on a table, face down and force my foot to touch my booty! Don't laugh! I really thought they were going to hurt me bad. Turns out that today was pretty easy. They asked tons of questions, measured my knee, measured my extension (I was at 6), measured my flexion (I was at 41) and watched me walk! Heal, toe, bend, repeat. Again, simple but much needed!

Then I was handed a list of printed exercises to do at home until my next appointment on Wednesday! Yup, I get to hurt myself in the comfort of my own home! No pain, no gain right? The Diva pushes me pretty hard so there is no cheating on this!

So what does the future hold? Well, I was thinking that running would be impossible before the 6 month mark but she said it was possible at 3 so we shall see! In the meantime, I continue to eat right and lose weight by the changes I have made in my diet! I can't tell you a number lost right now because the Diva dropped our scales and I have not been in a position to battle the back-to-school crowds to pick up another one! I do know that my clothes are too big and that is a good thing!

I will leave you with a picture of my biggest "problem" right now and that is keeping the bottom of my left foot clean! Lol! Yup, it is a running joke here at my house! As you can see, I have to use a mirror to see the horror that is my foot! Hope you all have a great week!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Sunday, August 21, 2011

TracFone Can Cut Your Cell Phone Bill!

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of TracFone for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

Everyone wants to save some money while allowing all the members of the family the freedom that comes with a cell phone without the high cost and the monthly surprises that come with a two year contract!  The good news is that TracFone can help without blowing your budget.  There are no contracts, credit checks or surprises when your cell phone bill arrives!  Along with nationwide coverage comes great connectivity and reception.  Plus you can get all the top phones including Motorola, Kyocera, LG, Nokia and Samsung  that you know and trust with so many features like camera/video recorder, web access, app capabilities, mp3 player, and full QWERTY keyboard, for $29.99 that you want!  You can choose from a simple bar phone or a smart phone that is Bluetooth capable, whatever fits your needs. 

You can pay as you go online or by purchasing  a card from a retailer nationwide!  You can receive double minutes for the life of your phone and 800 minutes for only $119.00.  Double minutes for the life of your phone can also be purchased separately but also come with many phone models!  Choose your plan to fit your needs starting at 50 minutes for $9.99 or 200 minutes for under $30.  For you international callers, you will be happy to now that you pay the same price to call Mexico that you use to call just down the street!  Don't take my word for it real TracFone customers speak highly of the service!  And real TracFone customers are the ones who have saved big time!

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Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Lesson Learned!

As we all know, life is a learning process that continues from birth to grave.  Some of us are more likely  to learn our lessons and apply them to our lives while others learn the same lesson over and over but never quite "get it"!  I have never been one to make the same mistake twice and always apply my life lessons as they are learned to better myself and my family.

I have never been on crutches for more than 3 days back when I was in High School and sprained my ankle so this not being able to move without help since the middle of July has taken it's tole on my spirit.  I have realized how much I take my mobility for granted.  I never realized what it meant to NOT be able to just do what I wanted, when I wanted!  Everything now has to be planned and prepared for.  The simplest task of preparing lunch must be planned like a dance to make the fewest trips around the kitchen and then I must enlist someone, usually the Diva, to carry it to the table since my hands are busy helping me walk.

I am so thankful that, with some physical therapy, I will regain my mobility but what if I could never walk again?  What then?  What if I couldn't run or dance with my baby girl?  I know that I would be sad but would adjust to that style of life but I don't have to!

My lesson learned:  dance like no one is watching, run just for the fun of it with child-like attitude and make sure that when the Diva wants to go for a walk.......we go!  So if you see me dancing down the street in a few weeks, dance with me!  When you see me running in 6 or 7 months, join me!  If you need a walking partner, call me I am available!  I will NEVER again take my mobility for granted! 

I pray you are all having a wonderful week!!  Now get out there and move!

Friday, August 12, 2011

2 Days Post-op

I am still alive and not so much kickin'! The day of surgery I was pretty calm and just ready to get it over with. When I came to, I felt like my leg had been bent backward! Ouch did not adequately describe what I was feeling but after a shot of pain meds, I felt much better! Don't get me wrong, they had given me a femoral nerve block and general anesthesia and then oral Lora-tab but I needed just a little extra help from my friend Toredol!

After a couple of hours of "wake up" time, I got to go home! I was fine until they started moving me and the nausea kicked in! Too bad I did not have the prescription filled yet! I made it to the car and almost made it home! Ick, but it was to be expected. That night was filled with sleep, sleep and more sleep!

The next morning, I had to unplug myself from the little icing machine that came home with me before I could even attempt to move. I tried to move my leg but could not do so! Aaah, yes, the med ball that had my nerve block was still going into my leg and I could feel nothing! The Knight had to physically lift it for me and then when I tried to move it felt like it weighed 80,000 pounds! Kid you not, it felt like it was going to pop out of the socket! Ugh! And let's not even mention trying to get to the bathroom! So yesterday was again another day of sleep!

That brings us to today! I am now 2 days post-op and had a couple of appointments today! Appointment number one was to get the little medicine ball catheter out of my leg! I have to admit some apprehension about this because I knew that I would begin to feel the knee for the first time! The second appointment was to see Dr. Eubanks so he could unwrap me! He said everything looks great and I go back next week to get the stitches out. The good news is that I can now bear weight on that leg with the assistance of my brace and crutches! I am getting there! I have some at home PT to do but will start seeing a trainer next week! Recovery here I come!!

Have a great weekend all!!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Going Under The Knife!

I will admit that I am a tad nervous about my ACL reconstruction tomorrow! At the risk of sounding like a big baby ( which I am), I have NEVER gone under without my Mommy! The Knight will be there but it just is not the same and this has caused me some anxiety issues the past few days!

I am as prepared as I can possibly be. The house is clean and the laundry is done. The pantry is stocked for two weeks and I even got a couple of bags of ice for the new little icing machine that will come home with me after surgery. I have books to read, photos to edit and Pinterest on my phone to keep me occupied during my recovery.

The Knight bought me a semi recumbent bike to ride when the Physical Therapist gives me the thumbs up! In case you are wondering, I will not be able to run for 6 to 8 months but the plan is to run again! I plan to start training again in April so I can do my first 5k in July and hopefully run the Mattoon to Peoria St. Jude's run at the end of July!

I will be back to photography in 4-5 weeks if I am a good girl. Maybe I needed this break to find my muse! Who knows? So here I go, starting my way to recovery!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Straight Talk 2 is Right for You

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Straight Talk for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

In today's world of mobile technology, it would be very easy to become overwhelmed with all that cell phone companies have to offer!  You want everything you need without the price tag that breaks your budget!  The truth is that you can get everything you need without one of those contracts that locks you in for two years.

The "All you need" plan gives you 1,000 minutes, 1,000 texts and 30 MB of web data for even the heaviest cell phone user.  For only $45 a month you get calls, text, picture messaging and web data.  Are you sold yet?  What if there are no contracts or surprise charges on a monthly bill?  How about phones from great manufacturers like LG, Motorola, Kyocera, Nokia and Samsung?  Have I got you hook, line and sinker YET?  Straight Talk 2 is free from activation, reactivation, or termination fees! 

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Well the doctor called with the results of my MRI and the news was worse than I had anticipated! I have a torn ACL and a possible medial tibia fracture! I could have cried! OK, I did cry!

So back on crutches I go because I am not to put any weight on my knee! I go see the ortho on Tuesday to see what the next step on the road to recovery will be! I am praying for no surgery but I am not holding my breath!

The good news is that the Knight is stepping up and taking care of the laundry since it is in the basement. He has also helped with everything else that I cannot do on crutches! Later today, we will hit the grocery store as a family! That should be fun!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

My Coke Rewards Can Help YOUR School!

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of My Coke Rewards for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.


MCR_School_Blogger_0706[1].pdf (page 3 of 3)

Hey parents, teachers and students!  Are you looking for a great way to give back to YOUR school? My Coke rewards for schools  gives YOUR school rewards when you donate your points!  It is as easy as signing your school up at  and then letting parents, kids and YOUR community know that by donating their points, YOUR school gets rewards like sports equipment and art supplies!

Kids play hard today and in order to encourage play, they need supplies for all the things they like to do!  By donating your points the schools can earn classroom supplies, art supplies and sports equipment to keep the play going strong!  Through September 30, Sprite will be giving away 25 playgrounds to schools whos supporters purchase and enter the code from and Sprite or Sprite Zero, a $25,000 total value!  In addition, for every three points donated to YOUR school through the Sprite Spark Parks for Schools sweepstakes, YOUR school gets additional chances to win!

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How do I register my school?

Pick someone to manage the account.

Go to and click on REGISTER TODAY to complete all the  registration information.

Spread the word to get points donated to YOUR school!

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Friday, July 29, 2011

Bring on the Weekend!

I am still not moving fast but I am so ready for a weekend of nothingness!  I had my MRI Thursday and am just in that waiting pattern.  I guess it will be Monday or Tuesday before I know anything.  It really stinks because every single day another friend laces up their shoes and begins to train for a 5K!

All I wanted to do was run and get in shape, but, NOOOOOOOOoooooooo!  I had to go and injure myself, three weeks into my training program!  It sucks I tell you!  Sorry for whining but I just needed to get it off my chest so I can move on with my life!

Have a wonderful weekend all!  Get out and get active since I can't!

And the Winner is......

Dana! You get a set of 250 die-cut business cards from!!

Sorry for the short post but I am working from my phone today! I hope you all have a wonderful weekend! Stay cool if you are in the heat zone!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Too Old To Run

The running came to a sudden halt!  Maybe it wasn't sudden because the pain came on gradually and got worse!  My last run was last Wednesday and by that evening, I could not walk!  My left knee was in tons of pain and my right was sore as well!  Ibuprofen and ice kept me moving and on Saturday, I attempted to take a walk which was an epic fail.  I thought for sure that I was going to have to call the Knight to come pick me up.  Yup, that's how bad I hurt!

The remainder of Saturday was spent on the couch with ice.  Sunday morning arrived and I could barely get out of bed but it was my day to sing with the praise team so I got up, got ready, took the ibuprofen and headed out the door!  I was doing pretty good until Sunday night when we moved the Diva to her new room (a story for another day) and I over did it!  The pain was back and I was in bed.

Monday morning, first thing, I called the doctor.  They did an x-ray to rule out bone issues and then scheduled me for an MRI on Thursday!  Possible diagnosis......torn meniscus!  Ugh!  Not what I wanted to hear!  So now I wait and I hobble (with crutches) and I sit as much as possible.  Hopefully, it can heal on it's own and no surgery will be required!  Maybe I am just too old to train for a 5K!

Friday, July 22, 2011

Win A Set of Die Cut Business Cards from!!

If you are like me, you are always looking for cool business cards that standout from the crowd!  I believe I have found the answer for all of us!  UPrinting offers business card printing that will suit all your needs!  UPrinting is offering one of my lucky readers a set of 250 Die Cut business cards!  You can choose from rounded corners, leaf, half circle side, oval or circle with your choice of 14 point card stock in gloss, matte or high gloss (UV) or 13 point card stock uncoated.  There is a six day turn around with FREE shipping!

UPrinting makes it easy by offering downloadable die-cut business card templates so you can design your card to your specifications!  It's fast and it's easy!  What more could you possibly ask for?  How about the rules about entering?  If you have won a similar giveaway from UPrinting in the past 6 months, you are not eligible to win this time.  Sorry, but rules are rules!  This contest is limited to U.S. residents 18 and older.  So enough of the rules!  Here is how you enter and I will make it super simple!  Just leave a comment stating which die-cut you would choose and leave your name and email address.  The contest ends on July 28, 2011 at 11:59 PM and the winner will be chosen by on the morning of July 29, 2011.  I will forward your name and email address to UPrinting, who will contact you withing 30 days of the contest ending!

This business card printing  giveaway is sponsored by UPrinting, no monetary compensation was given for hosting. For more information about online printing services, please visit

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

What's In A Name?

There is a lot to be said about the name we give to our family pets. Our first beagle was named Shiloh after the movie and she was a great companion to our son until we moved and could not take her! We found her a good and loving home but we missed her! In 2003, we settled into on-post housing at Ft. Campbell and found another beagle to join our family. Boscoe was named for a character on the tv show Third watch and it fit his personality to a tee! Then in 2005 we add a four-legged princess, who looked like a cow, and named her Zoey! The name fit her prissy personality.

Then came Capone and we totally missed the naming mark with him! When we met him, he was the strong, silent type so we (mistakenly) thought Capone was a fitting name but as time marches forward, we have discovered the error of our choice. At first he began to act more like Scooby Doo, clumsy and bungeling and always chewing on something. Then he showed his true identity as he would trip over his own paws, fall over for no reason and slide into a room. He is Kramer from Seinfeld! Yup, our dog embodies everything that is in Kosmo Kramer only in dog form! Our first impression of him was wrong but we love him and he is now part of our pack!

That's not to say that I don't get up set with him from time to time! The other day I decided that he would be a great running companion because he is high energy but remember what I said earlier about first impressions! I was wrong, again! I laced up my brand new running shoes and grabbed the leash and off we went! He did not keep consistent pace and wanted to pee on something every 3 minutes but we finally hit our stride and I was in the zone! That all changed 1 1/2 miles into the run when I thought the call of nature was about to strike, so with plastic band in hand, I was prepared! I, however, was not prepared for what happened next! Instead of answering "the call" Capone fell into a yard as if he had been shot (tongue flopped out of his mouth) and refused to budge!! Kramer had struck again! I finally coaxed him the last 1/2 mile to our driveway and up the sidewalk to the backyard where he promptly jumped into the Diva's pool! He added 4 minutes to my time! Sorry Kramer (Capone) no more running with mommy for you!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Thursday, July 14, 2011

A Running update!

I thought I would give you all an update on my quest for fitness! So far it is going great! I started on July 4th and logged a run of 2.14 miles in 36 minutes and 32 seconds! To be honest, I was just happy to make it back to my house without having to call a cab (or an ambulance)! 11 days later (today) I ran 2.08 miles in 30 minutes and 58 seconds! I am happy with my progression and I know that it will only get better as I go.

There have been some issues along the way like the blister that appeared on the bottom of my left foot and some chaffing that was taken care of by a pair of Under Armor shorts! Then there was three days of muscle soreness that I had to overcome but, all in all, it has been a great start to a great life change! I may even be able to run my first 5K by September if I work it right and train properly.

My eating habits have changed and I now view food as fuel and not comfort when the world is caving in around me (That is a story for another post). Do I deprive myself? HECK NO!! I am good every day but on Friday I allow myself to have my favorite local pizza! I keep Ben & Jerry's in the freezer for when I need it but only eat what is within the parameters of my daily calorie intake (and not everyday in huge amounts). I am toning quickly and the weight is starting to come off! I have lost about 6 pounds so far and still going! I cannot wait to reward myself with a new wardrobe at the end of this journey!

I will try to update my progress on a weekly basis! If you have any running or nutrition tips, please feel free to comment! I need all the help I can get!

Monday, July 4, 2011

Today is THE Day!

Yes, I know it's the 4th of July but it is also the first day of the rest of my life and I decided to make it better in the long run!  How?  Well, I laced up my running shoes and programmed my iPhone with some great music, set the alarm for 6 AM and took off running.  I ran 2.14 miles in 35 minutes which is not bad for my first run in over 5 years!

I have set some goals for myself to achieve along the way including (but not limited to):  weight loss, cholesterol under normal limits, lower my resting heart rate (I have sinus tachycardia & SVT) and last but not least, I want to run a 5K next summer!  There!  My goals are on paper!  I have also signed up on a website to run for 100 days straight, 30 minutes at a time! 

I got this cool little app on my phone that tracks every run I take as soon as I hit the start button!  It gives me updates on distance, speed, incline and pace every 5 minutes so I know what I need to do to better myself!  If you want to follow my progress on a daily basis then you can check me out on Facebook!  It will automatically post my run with all the gory details including calories burned!

I guess the moral of the story is:  if I can start at 43 then you can start at whatever your age is!  Get out there folks and get moving!  See you at the finish line!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Bad Dog

You know it's not gonna be good when you look out on the deck and see your dog covered in mud! All the rain yesterday gave Capone the perfect playground for his mischief making and he took full advantage. I turned my back to go get a towel so I could hose him off and retuned to see this!

I guess he was tired of waiting for me, so he took matters into his own paws. I have never owned a dog that loves water as much as this lovable pooch. Oh well, I guess I just need to keep my eye on him when he is in the yard and has too much time on his paws!

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Sunday, June 26, 2011

The Perfect Summer Chick Flick

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Monte Carlo for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

If you are looking for that perfect girl movie then grab your girlfriends and your daughters and go see Monte Carlo.  The movie opens in theaters on Friday but you can purchase tickets starting on June 29th at Fandango.  The movie is about a girl who is traveling with her friends and ends up becoming an "accidental heiress" while in Paris.  Can you imagine the adventures that ensue?  I mean, isn't it every girls dream to be rich and famous for a day?  I think it would be a blast but since it won't be happening for me any time soon, I can live out my fantasy during the movie!

My daughter is a big Selena Gomez fan but since she is only 4, I will be grabbing some of my friends for a girls night out including dinner and a movie.  You can go to the Facebook page for the movie to connect with other fans and share your thoughts about the movie!  You can also check out the trailer on YouTube by clicking here Monte Carlo!  Check it out and see for yourself that this is a must see movie for your summer viewing!  Well, what are you waiting for?

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Monday, June 20, 2011

No Computer

Yes, I have a computer but I made a promise to myself that I would only be on when business warranted and NEVER on the weekend! So I have not turned my computer in since last Thursday and I am OK with that! I still check email and Facebook from my phone so I know if I need to attend to anything important but for the most part, I am just having fun in the pool with the Diva!

I know, that all too soon, I will be back in editing mode because Senior pictures are starting this weekend and going full force until those last minute folks are scheduled! I am excited to be working again but I have so enjoyed taking a break. When I say break, I mean dentist and doctor visits, running here and there so not really a break at all! I am slowing down a bit after my last SVT episode that sent me to the ER so that is a good thing and no episodes since is great! I go to get the hottest accessory in heartwear tomorrow. I get my holter monitor! I am not looking forward to it but I know it is all part of the diagnostic process.

For now, back to the pool to relax some more! Later peeps!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Follow up

So I finally got to see my doctor following my ER visit on the 5th.  She is a GP so she just did the same old routine:  take notes, listen to my heart and send me for labs!  Oh, and schedule me for a 24 hour halter monitor!  I am not looking forward to it but know that it can be a great diagnostic tool!  Anyway, in addition, my cholesterol is high (family history) so I am now on meds and on my way to a better diet and more exercise!

Ugh!  Why must we fall apart as we get older?  Just askin!  I am not complaining because it could be so much worse than it is!  So here is to a healthier me in 2011!  Time to get serious!  If you have any tips, I will gladly take them.  I need all the help I can get.

Goal:  Lose 50 lbs and lower my total cholesterol to under 200.  I want to be close to my goals when I go back to the doctor in 6 months!  Let the fun!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Today is a Work Day

Most of my days are spent with the Diva out by the pool or playing at the park or going to lunch but today, I had to actually work!  I had a wedding, a family shoot and a Diva shoot to edit and get off of my plate!  Oh, and the house needed cleaned and the laundry needed to be tamed so I have been a very busy girl!  I don't mind so much since it is a rain day here in the middle of the cornfield.

Last week was spent at the dentist with both kids.  The Moody Teen needed some fillings and even a root canal (yikes)!  His fault for not being serious about his teeth!  The Diva, despite brushing her teeth 6 or 7 times a day, had a few cavities also!  It was so sad to see her after fillings!  Her mouth was all heavy and droopy and she was drooling and crying.  She wasn't upset about the numbness!  She was crying because of her crooked mouth!  Yup, she was afraid her friends would make fun of her and no amount of consoling could convince her that it would go away in a couple of hours and she would be as good as new again.  I should have video taped her because it really was comical!

Oh, well!  I will leave you with a snapshot of what I have been working on lately and some links so you can see more!

You can see more of the Diva here!

You can see more of the Sullivan family here!

You can see more of Mr. & Mrs. Eastin here!

I sure hope you all are enjoying your summer!  I will be checking back in but I will probably be doing it pool side!  Join me if you like!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Store Brand Baby Formula Victorious in Court

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

This week a U.S. Circuit Court upheld a $13.5 million false advertising claim against Enfamil maker Mead Johnson.  The case was based on advertising by infant formula giant, Enfamil that stated it was superior to store brands.  These statements were found to be false and misleading since store brand formulas offer the same nutritional value as Enfamil.

“As the litigation history of the parties demonstrates, despite having twice been restrained from disseminating misleading advertising, Mead Johnson continued to do so,” Circuit Judge Andre Davis wrote. “PBM cannot fairly compete with Mead Johnson unless and until Mead Johnson stops infecting the marketplace with misleading advertising. ”

"The Court has made it clear that national brand and store brand suppliers are entitled to fairly compete and advertising abuses will not be tolerated," said Perrigo Chairman and CEO Joseph C. Papa in a statement. "We also appreciate the Court's recognition that PBM could lawfully compare its products to national brand products."

This is a huge victory for parents who are looking to save on their grocery budget yet give their infant the best nutrition possible.  You can be confident that store brand formula is safe and healthy  for your baby.  This is also a huge victory for the makers of store brand formulas, who could not compete with the the major manufacturers of infant formula due to smaller advertising budgets. It is also reassuring to know that the smaller manufacturers of infant formula can win such a huge victory over the giants of this world. We, as parents, still have the right to decide which infant formula is best for our little ones! If you need more information you can check out and decided for yourself what is best for you and your family.  Information is empowerment and can help you make the right choice.

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Monday, June 6, 2011

My Trip To The ER

I think I jinxed myself! Is it possible? Oh, yes it is! Saturday evening my niece called to say that she needed me to take her to the ER for abdominal pain so I drove 15 minutes to pick her up and brought her back to the ER. While waiting for her diagnosis, we were chatting with a nurse about how many times we are in the ER. My niece has two boys so she had been in quite a few times in the last year and I blurted out that I had not been in since September of 2009! As soon as the words tumbled off my lips, I knew I was in trouble!

After her diagnosis of gall stones, we left the ER to head to our friendly 24 hour Walgreens to fill her pain meds (the good stuff) and then I took her home. I fell into my bed at 4:00 AM. I was never so happy to see my bed!

At 6:00 AM my heart decided that it was going to run a marathon and SVT (SupraVentricular Tachycardia) kicked in. Now, normally when this happens it lasts about 30 minutes (maximum) and then I am back to my normal happy self but this was not the case this time! 4 hours later, I decided it was my turn to head to the ER because my heart was still acting like a machine gun gone wild.

I have to say that when you go into the ER with a heart issue, they jump and you are on your way to getting help quicker than quick! They did an EKG and my p wave was missing (not good), my ticker was beating at 198 beats per minute and I was resting! My heart was so out of control that they could not get an accurate blood pressure even manually. Yup, I was a hot mess.

The doctor started an IV and placed my feet above my head to try to coax my heart back to sinus rhythm but that didn't work. Neither did coughing or blowing into a straw with the end pinched off! Time to bring out the big gun: Adenocard 6 mg. This drug has a half life of two seconds so they had to raise my arm up, push the drug and then massage my arm to get the drug to my heart before my body rendered it useless. The doctor tried to prepare me for the feeling that I was about to experience but NO words prepared me. Even when he told me my heart would stop and then hopefully convert to sinus rhythm.

So we were ready to go with the Adenocard and I have to admit that I was nervous as all get out! They raised my arm, pushed the drug and massaged and then I felt my heart stop and restart! I felt like I had been kicked in the chest by a mule! It took me a few minutes to catch my breath as my heart rate went from 198 to 88 in 2 seconds flat! Wow, what a wild ride that was!!

So what does this mean for my future? Well, I just need to pay attention to any SVT episodes I might have and be seen if it lasts for more than an hour. If it keeps happening, I may need to see a Cardiologist to have the electrical system in my heart checked out to see if an ablation of that pathway is needed. For now it is business as usual. I am eating good, de stressing my life and working out more!

Monday, May 30, 2011



That freedom is not free.


That someone died for me.


The families who made the sacrifice.


That friends have suffered and lost.


That I never will forget!

Thanks to all who have served and to those who have paid the ultimate price!  I will never forget the price you paid for me or my family!

To my husband, brother, father, step-father and cousins who served:  you are my heros!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The End and The Beginning

No this is not a post rapture that did not happen post!  I am still here and so are you so obviously nothing happened!  This week marks that big day in a teen's life when they are considered an adult to the world at large!  Ready or not here they come, the Class of 2011!

The Moody Teen finished school last Friday (and yes I cried) since he did not have to take finals this week so he gets a small break before getting that piece of paper that parents everywhere covet for their teens.........a High School Diploma!  I have waited 18 long years for this moment and I am going to have my he is going to have his moment!  I am excited that he made it and no one died in the process.  I am happy that he is going out with honors and I am so proud that he has chosen an awesome career to pursue!

Are you ready for his new path?  I wasn't, but here goes:  Mortuary Science.  WHAT??????    Yup, you read right!  This from the kid who used to be scared to death of anything that was no longer living!  Now that he has done some dissecting, he thinks is may be cool!  OK, son, whatever makes you happy and helps you support yourself!  I am on-board!

From boy to man in the blink of an eye!  Zach, I love you and I am so proud of the man that you have become!  Live your dream and make it happen!  You are the only person who knows what you want and the only person who can make you happy!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Trial by Fire!

Usually before I leave the house, the Diva is dressed and ready for the day! Yesterday, however, that was not the case! I had to be at church by 8 AM for a rehearsal and left the Knight and the Diva sound asleep and they would join me around 9:15. I had planned exactly what the Diva would wear and laid it on the dining room table so all daddy had to do was get her dressed and brush her hair.

At 8:35, I got the first text that read: OMG! To which I replied: ? The Knight then replied: She is such a DIVA! My reply: LOL! Welcome to my world!

At 9:00 I sent a text asking how things were going and got no reply! It was not until my husband walked into church looking very frazzled that I realized what a number she had done on him! I took her name tag to her and got the full story!

She did not want to wear what I set out for her because it was not pink! Then she did not want to wear the leggings and promised not to show her underwear at church. She then proceeded to tell me that daddy chased her around the house to put her clothes on her! She refused to wear the belt with the dress and could brush her own hair! The poor Knight had finally had a showdown with his "mini me"! Yes, she is her father's daughter through and through!

I really did not feel one bit sorry for him because he now knows what I deal with every single day!

We Caught the Easter Bunny!

Well, the Diva caught the Easter Bunny! OK, she caught our bunny! After church, she had a private egg hunt and then we brought bunny man outside for some photo fun! We thought it was fun but he did not look amused most of the time! How could you be happy with a 4 year old Diva chasing you around the yard?

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone


Testing AgAiN!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Friday, May 6, 2011

On Being A Mom

Being a mom has changed my life in so many ways!  There is absolutely nothing that compares to this part of my life!  Now, I am little less conventional since I have an 18 year old and a 4 year old but I would not trade my circumstances for anything in the world.  Does my parenting become a little bi-polar?  You bet!  Parenting my little Diva is much different than parenting my almost grown Moody Teen.  Most days I manage to keep it all together and I know who I am talking to but there are days when things get a little messy and my mind fails to keep the teen and the toddler separated.  I blame MY age (soon to be another year older)!

19 years ago, when I was pregnant with the Teen, the weather was much like it is now!  Rainy and cold for typical May temperatures.  Just one thing I remember as I prepare the his high school graduation!  Yikes!!  Then my mind takes  me to the day he held 10 adults at bay with an active garden hose with a sprayer!  He was 4 and he was determined to soak us all.  Memories, sweet memories.

I could tell lots of Diva tale but we would be here all day so I will tell one of my favs from last summer.  We went to a 4th of July cookout at a friends and there were other kids running around when we got there.  The Diva walked up to a 2 year old in a bikini and loudly stated, "My mom has bigger bras than you!"  Oh my!  We all had a good laugh!

I pray that you all have a wonderful weekend!  To all the mothers:  Happy Mother's Day!  To all the kids and husbands:  make this weekend one to remember for the special mom in your life!  To my Mama:  I miss you more everyday but am thankful for all the wonderful memories and the great advice that you shared along the way!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

I Am Guilty of Neglect!

Yup, I have been neglecting you all!  I know there are no excuses but life and business have been a little on the busy side!  The Moody Teen is graduating in a couple of weeks and there is still much to do to prep for that and the Diva only has 3 more days of school and well you get the picture!

I did get some good news to share this week!!!  My son is getting an award on Honors Night!  Hello, did not see that coming!  Even he doesn't know what it is for so we will all be surprised next week!

I promise to be back soon!  Lots of pictures to share!  Have a great Thursday!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Dance Your Shoes Off!

As Easter is approaching, I could not help but share this video!  It speaks for itself with not explanation needed from me!  Please watch it through to the end because it is amazing!  The song is amazing too so really listen to the words!  I have cried (in a good way) every time I watch this!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

FRESCHETTA by the Slice Giveaway

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of FRESCHETTA® for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.