Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Dress Drama

So ... DD needs a dress for her graduation that's coming up.  We hit the Memorial Day sales yesterday in an attempt to find the perfect dress without having to spend an arm and a leg (I'd like to keep all my limbs, thankyouverymuch).

We spent about four hours shopping and, while we DID buy a dress, she's not entirely happy with it, so there may be more shopping in my near future (oh. joy.).

This is the dress SHE loved best (and it was my least favorite):

This was my favorite (she hated the teeny little shoulder pads -- she would have never lived through the 80s):

This was my next fave:

This is what we ended up with:

But now, she's thinking she'd rather have a short dress again, so the tags are staying on the pink dress and we'll hit some of the mall stores over the next week or so to see what we can find.

Life was so much easier when she was two.


Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Style Your Garage

LOVE this!!

Is Your Garage Door Boring?

Are you fed up with looking daily at your boring garage door?  Just stick a new decal on your door! You should see the look on the faces of your neighbors!

Make an impression on your neighbors!  The German company "Style Your Garage" makes posters for your garage door.  Everything included!

Tell me you wouldn't want one of these.... :-D

Friday, May 18, 2012

Please welcome Allie Pleiter to the blog!

I'm sponsoring a giveaway, too ... so make sure you read all the way to the end.

I had so much fun will Allie last time, I invited her to celebrate another release with me here ("Homefront Hero" from Harlequin Love Inspired Historical). We couldn't do the Dog Dish again (sorry, Bella!), so I asked her to share some things with us (yanno, deep, dark secrets ... stuff we'd never guess) instead.

Feel free to chime in with your own deep, dark secret.  We're all friends here ;-)

Seven things you’d never guess about Allie Pleiter

1. I used to deliver singing telegrams.

Yep, it’s true. I was a theater major in college, and had a car, so it was a natural part-time job for a shameless extrovert with an Ethel Merman voice (I’ll bet half of you don’t even know who Ethel Merman was!). My worst ever telegram was the time a soon-to-be ex-husband sent a singing telegram to his soon-to-be ex-wife as a last ditch attempt to stave off the signing of the divorce papers. To her office cubicle at work. In front of lots of people. It was unbearably sad and awkward, but I was contractually obligated to deliver the message. We were all glad when the episode was over.

2. I own six translations of Beowulf.

I love, love, love old epic English poetry. I can still recite the opening stanzas of The Cantebury Tales in the original language. “Whan that April...”

3. I adore James Bond movies.

Okay, this one probably is a bit more well known as I’ve not been shy about my affection for Agent 007. A morally bankrupt guilty pleasure I know, but handsome man in tuxes wielding fancy gadgets and fancier cars...what’s not to love?

4. I am not allowed to serve lima beans in my house.

I actually love them. Brussels sprouts, too. I am alone in my tastes, however. I used to buy a little can or frozen carton every once in a while and eat them for lunch when everyone one else is out of the house, but even that’s died down. I love escargot, too, but at least my family will let me order that in a restaurant (my son loves the “eww” factor of his mom eating snails).

5. I wore a Kermit the Frog watch until I was 24 yeas old.

I wanted to work for the Muppets more than anything growing up. I loved them. We own several editions of the original Muppet Show on DVD. When the recent movie came out, I was in absolute heaven!
6. I cannot snap my fingers.

This presents a real challenge as a parent. I’m not sure why I can’t accomplish this simple trick, but even at 49 years-old it completely eludes me. I can, however, do something called “plinking,” which is a painfully effective flick of my index finger upon the forehead of any misbehaving child. That’s very useful. Even when said child is old enough to drive.

7. I nearly failed history in high school.

My 10th grade history teacher, Mr. Bochinski, would gasp in horror to discover I now write historical novels. I was terrible at high school history. I think it was because that ends up being mostly about facts and dates and political issues, whereas my books are about lives and loves and drama. Drama was something I excelled at in high school!

And Allie's official bio (which doesn't seem to mention singing telegrams):

An avid knitter, coffee junkie, and devoted chocoholic, Allie Pleiter writes both fiction and non-fiction. The enthusiastic but slightly untidy mother of two, Allie spends her days writing books, buying yarn, and finding new ways to avoid housework. Allie hails from Connecticut, moved to the midwest to attend Northwestern University, and currently lives outside Chicago, Illinois. The “dare from a friend” to begin writing has produced two parenting books, fourteen novels, and various national speaking engagements on faith, women’s issues, and writing. Visit her website at www.alliepleiter.com or her knitting blog at http://www.destiknitions.blogspot.com/

Dashing and valiantly wounded, Captain John Gallows could have stepped straight out of an army recruitment poster. Leanne Sample can't help being impressed—although the lovely Red Cross nurse tries to hide it. She knows better than to get attached to the daring captain who is only home to heal and help rally support for the war's final push. As soon as he's well enough, he'll rush back to Europe, back to war—and far away from South Carolina and Leanne. But when an epidemic strikes close to home, John comes to realize what it truly means to be a hero—Leanne's hero.

This book sounds SO AWESOME, that I'm going to buy a copy for someone who comments here today. You can choose Nook, Kindle or print. Who wants it?? Just raise your hand (in the form of a comment) and let me know. :-)

Thanks for coming by, Allie. I used to fall asleep to Ethel Merman as a baby and, in fact, named one of my cats after her (the cat used to yowl all the time ... so... Ethel she was). I have to agree on the lima beans, too. :-)

Thursday, May 17, 2012


Just a quick note, because I'm bursting ...

DD got her acceptance letter from the school we wanted her to go to for high school!!

They said just lovely things like:

"You have done well with your schooling, and I believe you are well prepared."

We had to provide at least three letters of recommendation, and they mentioned a bit from those (as we didn't see them).  They said, in part:

"(DD) is highly motivated and attempts to excel in all of her assigned work."

And our agility instructor mentioned DD's "...committment to excellence and her joy in working with new handlers."

So we're going to have a new adventure ahead of us come August.  We're both excited and a little nervous. 

Wednesday, May 16, 2012


I'm alive.

I feel awful for not having blogged in so long, and am going to make a concerted effort to find time to do so regularly again.  The biggest thing, I think, is that I simply don't have time to do it in the mornings so I'll need to rearrange my brain patterns, and start doing it in the afternoon or evening.

Yes, I'm still buried with work, insanely behind and treading water.  It's one of those double-edged swords.  I'm thrilled to be this busy, on the one hand, but would sure love ten minutes to take a breath.

I did manage to get my garden in (more detailed post later) because the weather's been gorgeous here.  But other than that it's all work, all the time.  My house is frighteningly unclean (though I finally broke down and mopped yesterday afternoon because, ugh).

I haven't blog-hopped, I haven't spent much time on Facebook (though I'm there at least a little bit daily -- I need a small fix of my friends!).  I MISS you guys.

I think summer will help.  I lose nearly three hours a day in drive time for the kidlet taking her to and from school.  Next year, assuming she's accepted to the new school (we had our final interview last week and the board is meeting to review applications soon -- we were told there were, for the first time, more applicants than there were spots to fill, but that DD's "resume" is pretty impressive, and we shouldn't worry about her chances too much) it's only a 12 minute drive (in non-snow weather) AND I won't have to wait in a line to pick her up (which takes me almost 30 mins every afternoon).

We'll see.  Honestly, I'm not entirely certain what the answer is.  I do know I'm losing my mind just a little bit.

funny pictures - *MY NEW HOME*