Thursday, March 31, 2011

Thankful Thursday

I'm noticing lately that all of my blog titles are starting to have the day of the week in them!! Ha ha! It's okay though, b/c it means I like what you're doing & I wanna play along! :-)

I'm thankful for so many of the wonderful things in my life - even some of the not so wonderful b/c they make me stronger I've decided. Today, though I'm most thankful for my two beautiful babies! I look at pictures like this & it just makes my heart swell...
And as I lay down each night I must again thank God for giving me the two most precious babies. I don't know what I would do without them in my life...and I know they are truly a gift to us! I hope they always love one another so dearly & honestly.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Vloggin' Vednesday, WILW & A QUICK Recipe!

Vloggin' Vednesdays
I didn't think I was going to get a vlog done for today actually b/c I didn't have a clue about what How To video I could at the last minute today I whipped out my iPhone & I do have a very short How To to share with I hope you like it!!!
(I never look or sound like myself on video - does everyone else feel that way, too?? LOL) I'm loving the Potato Soup that I made for us last night!! (I'm sad I forgot mine at home, though for lunch today)...
Since we've all been sick at the house (now it's just down to me & Michael really), soup was a good idea for dinner last night. So, I decided on potato soup, b/c it sounded the most soothing for our tummies.

I thought I had some potatoes in the pantry, but when I got home I realized I didn' I had to improvise b/c I was not leaving the house after I got home last night to make a store run! I had instant potato flakes in the pantry - these were great when Aaron was younger and great as an add when I was making his baby food...he loved it with chicken. So, I decided to just give it a go with them. I put some butter in my stock pot & added onions, S&P and celery seed (oh, and all measurements are really to taste)...I let this cook a while till my onions got tender. Then I added about 4 cups of water with chicken bullion and let that come to a slow boil. Then I added about 3 cups of the potato flakes - maybe 3 1/ got very thick! Once it was all mixed very well I started adding milk a little at a time to get it to the right consistency I wanted for our soup. When I cook potatoes for mashed potatoes I usually add sour cream so I added about 1/2 a cup of sour cream and this you have to stir a lot so the sour cream doesn't lump. It was like baked potato soup...and it turned out super yummy!! I was very impressed with it and it only took about 20 minutes start to finish. Next time I might add about 1/2 an onion instead of a whole onion...but otherwise it was great and easy and quick and I didn't have to go buy potatoes!!!

I'm also loving that we're going to visit my Grannie this weekend! She is going to be 97 years old this August!!We haven't seen her in a while, so we're anxious to visit - and Michael is anxious to go fishing! LOL
Emma told me this morning actually she wanted to go to Grannie's (don't know what made her think of it, unless it was b/c she wore her boots today & we bought them last time we went up to see Grannie) I told her we were going this weekend & she got very excited!

Simply Bags Review

I'm such a slacker - I've put this post off for too long!! I received an incredible embroidered tote bag with my name on it from Simply Bags over a week ago...and can I just say I've been using the heck out of it! LOL! It's sort of become my new go to bag b/c it's great for everything! Simply Bags sells the best selection of personalized bags for any occasion & they sent me this fantastic one so that I could see it up close!!
The bag I received has "Hanna" embroidered on the front in red - my favorite color! The bag is a great quality bag and the straps are a great length. I was really impressed with the embroidery work as well & the size of this measures 20"W x 15#H with a 5 inch bottom - like I said, it holds everything for me!! It works great as a overnight for the kids - plenty of room for diapers and clothes - or for me toting stuff back and forth to work!

But their selection of quality bags is truly huge - from diaper bags, to beach bags, animal print bag & quilted bags...and I love anything personalized! Seeing the quality of their work up close, Simply Bags might have to be my first stop when looking for a great gift for someone!

I was sent this product in exchange for writing this review. The opinions in this post are solely my own.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Friends with Benefits

All I have to say is that this looks hilarious!!! I love Mila Kunis, too!!

Costume Review

I was asked to do a review for Costume Discounters & I have to say I was super excited for this review - mainly b/c my daughter has wanted to be Jessie for Halloween (or just any day really) forever! She loves Jessie! Any time she sees a cowboy hat she tells me she's Jessie if she wears I thought I would be mom of the year if she could get a great Jessie costume for Halloween this year - and that is just what we got from Costume Discounters, is a great costume!!

(Site Description for Girls Deluxe Toy Story 3 Jessie Costume) Everybody's favorite yodeling cowgirl is Jessie from Toy Story 3. Jessie is known for being very energetic and enthusiastic. If you know an outspoken little lady, the Deluxe Toy Story 3 Jessie costume would suit her perfectly. The girl's Deluxe Toy Story 3 Jessie costume features a one piece jumpsuit with attached belt. The sleeves of the jumpsuit have big yellow cuffs with fringe and the legs have printed-on chaps with fringes. The costume also includes Jessie's red cowgirl hat and a yellow hair bow. With the 2010 release of Toy Story 3 we know that this will be a hot girl's Halloween costume for the next several years.

* Includes: Jumpsuit with attached belt and cuffs, matching hat and hair bow. Boots not included.

I didn't tell Emma the costume was coming & when it arrived you should have seen her face! I wish I had a picture of that! She was so excited & so was I b/c I was very impressed with the quality of the costume. It isn't too heavy at all, which is great b/c even in October here in the Houston area it can be pretty hot for Halloween and so many Halloween costumes are way to thick & bulky to wear down here. But if it is cool, the costume has enough stretch to it that she can wear it over leggings or even her jeans if it's that cold! 

And it all looks just like what you see in the image. Many times when you order something like this online what you see isn't always what you get, but in this case it really was. 

Their site has everything & is so easy to surf. And most costumes come in a variety of sizes from babies, toddlers, kids, teens & adults. I think come Halloween we might have to make another shopping trip & get Aaron a Woody costume to go along with sister!

Wouldn't he be adorable in this!?!?

I received this product in exchange for writing a review for Costume Discounters. The opinions expressed in this review, however, are solely my own honest response to the product.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Quick Weekend Update

We had a very busy weekend - but very fun...until Sunday that is, but I'll get to that...

Friday night we had concert tickets to see Kevin Fowler with my niece, her bf, Michael's brother and some was a blast! We haven't been out like that in a long, long time & it was a lot of fun!! 

Here are a few pics I snapped with my phone! 
(this is my niece)
We knew it would be a late night so Emma & Aaron spent the night with my parents. They were still getting over being sick all week, too. Emma hadn't been eating all week and my little gobbler Aaron was getting to that point, too. It was awful to see them like that. Saturday morning when we went to get them, though they seemed to be somewhat improved, but still not eating like I wanted. Though they both acted like they felt fine - they ran around all afternoon outside at my parents' house while we did a little yard work there. Then, of course, the moment we drove away they crashed!!! Emma woke up when we made it home & got in the shower - Aaron stayed sound asleep till it was time to go again Saturday evening.

This was Emma Saturday afternoon after her shower - she seemed to be a little bit more perky!

We had Cirque du Soleil tickets for Saturday night so we all headed out for an early dinner. I could tell Aaron was starting to feel better b/c he actually ate pretty well. Emma still did not - even tried bribing her with everything we could think of, but it didn't help much. They stayed with Michael's parents Saturday evening while we went out & other than milk (sour in the their tummies) I said just let them eat anything they would - especially Emma. It was really getting to the point where I didn't care what it was, if it was food she would eat I said okay. I mean Friday she had no color in her lips. She did eat a couple of bites Saturday night, though so I took that as a sign of improvement.

And Ovo - was spectacular!! All their shows are really...and Michael and I did have a good evening out together. It was about 11:30 when we made it home after picking up the kids. When we started to lay down my own tummy started feeling not quite right. I just figured it was allergy related - drainage from the pollen. Boy was I wrong - I was able to fall asleep, but a little after 2am it woke me up and I was so sick - and this went on for the rest of the day & evening on Sunday. Then a fever started in the early evening & stayed with me most of the night. By the time I went to bed I felt human again - after spending literally all day lying on the couch & not eating a thing (now I know how my kids felt). Theirs lasted all week, but it was just a little each day - mine was their weeks worth all compacted into 24 hours I think. I haven't felt that sick in a long, long time.

Today I feel drained - tired - sore - achy - and still a little nauseous, but was able to get up and come in to work. Whether I make it all day is another question. One thing, though the kids seem to be fine and for that I'm so thankful. They ate and ate yesterday and had no fever and didn't get sick all day! They seem to finally be back to normal!!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Watching Kevin Fowler

Hanna Kubeczka

Dusting off Photoshop...

I decided it was time to change the look around here - actually I decided that a long time ago, but haven't had the time to work in Photoshop much at all. I barely get time to edit photos in Lightroom as it is...but I finally just made the time & thought some of our fun pics from the beach would brighten things up! I love how Aaron is checking out the water & mud on his toes in his picture...and my little beauty in her shades is super cool!! 


Momma in Focus Friday

One Day At A Time

Another weekend is drawing near, which means that it's time for another Momma in Focus Friday!  This week's prompt is DESSERT!!

Now I would be lying if I said I didn't like dessert - who doesn't like it??? But it doesn't like me so I try to avoid sugar when possible...sugar gives me migraines & it really makes my clothes shrink. But...for the sake of the picture I did indulge in a bite or two!! 

(This is a recycled picture - little tummies in our house haven't been feeling good at all this week so we haven't had too much in the way of dessert - that's why I decided I would use this picture of me & Emma from last weekend at the Carnival (plus I did have it snapped in anticipation of this prompt! Next Friday I'll have to get two pics of me & Aaron to make up for him missing out on today.)

Last weekend when we went to the HLSR Emma got a caramel apple...which are one of my she shared a bite with me! This was the same treat to which she exclaimed, "Hey - there's an apple in here!!" after she had made it through some of the peanuts & caramel!! LOL! My precious girl!

Sharing a caramel apple
This was near the end of our visit & the sun was getting ready to bid us farewell - I really like the warm tones from the sun hitting us contrasting with all the dark shadow caused from the awning overhead!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Thankful Thursday Link Up

The biggest thing I am thankful for this week is that I think my baby girl is finally getting well - she isn't 100%, but she was well enough to go to school today after being out for two days. I hope that all this stuff is out of her system.

I'm also thankful for the great weekend we had at the rodeo and the great weekend we have coming up - Friday & Saturday are already booked with fun stuff for the weekend!!! I can't wait! Concert Friday night & Cirque du Soleil Saturday night (my valentine's gift from hubby - thanks hubby)!

I am also thankful that I've lost 5lbs!!! I've been working hard & have been on a plateau for a looooooooooooong time, but I'm finally starting to see some movement again on the scale! I've been noticing a change in the way my clothes fit for a while, but the scale wouldn't move. :-( Well, today it did!!! And last week I bought a pair of pants that I didn't try on & when I brought them home they were a bit snug - well, tonight I'm going to try them on again & am crossing my fingers that they fit! WooHoo!

And I'm so very thankful this week for my Daddy! He came over yesterday morning VERY early to spend the day at the house with Emma while she was home sick for the 2nd day. My mom is out of town visiting my Grannie so Daddy came over alone and he & Emma hung out all day & watched cartoons! Thanks so much Daddy - you don't know what a help you were to me!

"What if we woke up with only the things we thanked God for yesterday..."
(P.S. - Don't forget to enter my latest giveaway here!!)

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

It's a Vintage Giveaway & Discount Code: Shabby Apple

 If you love vintage inspired apparel & accessories then you are going to love Shabby Apple! They have beautiful women's dresses & even little girls' dresses that are so beautiful - they even have dress up attire for kids!  

And the accessories - necklaces & bracelets & hair details - even bags & shoes!
I love this one:
Aren't the colors in this bag great??

One of their newest dresses is called Spanish Steps and I think it is gorgeous!!

This dress is so beautiful and elegant!

And GUESS WHAT!! One of my lucky readers will get to win this beautiful dress!!!!

Not only is Shabby Apple giving this beautiful dress away to one of my readers, but they are also offering a DISCOUNT of 10% to all of my readers! 

Just use the following code when placing your order:  
(this code will be valid for one month)
 So, how can you win this lovely dress?

Here's how to enter:
Mandatory Entry: Follow Daily Venting & Exclamations publicly via Google Friends Connect!

Bonus Entries: Do one or all of the following for additional chances to win. Please be sure to leave a comment for each one you do & include your email address - each comment will be counted as an entry!

  1. Visit Shabby Apple and let me know what you love!
  2. Tweet this giveaway (Another bonus - Tweet once per day & leave a comment each time you do for an additional entry!)
  3. Post about the giveaway on Facebook
  4. Like Shabby Apple on Facebook
  5. Post about the giveaway on your blog & link back to this post (please provide link)
This giveaway is open to US Residents will run until March 31st & I will announce the winners Friday, April 1st!

Vloggin' Vednesdays

I'm excited about participating in my first every Vlog! Hopefully this will be the first of many! I guess everyone says the same thing - I cringe when I see myself "live" - or rather recorded - but I'm pushing past that insecurity and sharing anyway! LOL - please don't laugh too loud!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Sickness came to our house...

This is my baby girl today...

She and I were both sick last night. I picked her up from school at lunchtime bc she had got sick the time I picked her up she seemed to be feeling a little better so I asked her if she wanted to go home with me or to Grammy's - the babysitter - with Aaron. She said she wanted to go see Grammy so I got her some lunch and we went over there. It's just across the street from my work, too so I liked being close to her if she didn't just want to go home. She ended up not eating and just laying around most of the afternoon...

At 4:30 I picked her and Aaron up and headed home and she crashed before we made it home - and didn't wake up again until this morning when I woke her at 6:30 to go to school. I got sick last night when we got home, too and though I felt a bit drained and weak this morning I felt alright to go to work...but when I woke her up she had a 101.8 we decided the best thing was to stay home today. If it's just a virus it needs to run its course and get out of her (or our) systems and a fever means she is contagious, so she can't go to school with that anyway...

I didn't bring my work laptop home yesterday and started to go in this morning and get it to work from home, but when I called in I was told everything could wait till tomorrow. Priority was getting my baby well. 

Aaron seems to be fine - he had a fever a couple days last week, but didn't have any other symptoms - so I don't know if he had something and passed it to us or we just got lucky and got this on our own! Either way, today is about getting better. 

It's easy to tell when Emma really doesn't feel well. She is so lethargic today and will most likely lay around like this until she starts to feel better. Her temp is down to 99.8 I pray it continues to go down and this gets out of her system today. Books and cartoons are all she is about right now - we ready two books this morning while it was still dark out and Aaron was asleep and now she is watching cartoons - she did eat one and a half cinnamon rolls and has drank a lot of water this morning.
It's quiet around here - I need my loud and energetic baby girl back!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Aaron's First Year -'s finished!!

I cannot believe that it's finally DONE!!! I am so thrilled to have this finished!!

I finished the last two month pages and a year in review page...
For Emma's album - I ordered as I went - her book wasn't really as organized as Aaron's, though. Aaron's book has fewer pages actually, so now that I am done I am going to order a book with all these pages already put together. Emma's book has each page in a separate page protector - this way was much easier to be honest! I may go back and do the same with her pages down the road, too. We'll see - I'm just glad it's finished for him!

Night out with Friends & the HLSR Carnival

We had such a fun weekend - I wish I could have slept in today - I'm so tired! But it was so worth it!! Friday night we had plans to go out with friends, so my parents came over to watch Emma & Aaron. We had a fun time out & ran into my niece & her bf, whose parents were in town so it was nice to get to meet them as well. 

Saturday we planned to take the kids to the carnival and livestock show at the parents went with us so they just stayed the night Friday night. Saturday after lunch we all loaded up and headed down to the rodeo! We had such a great time that we ended up staying 8 hours down there!!!!

Emma has got so brave -she rode all the rides!! The tea cups were her favorite, though!
Aaron was on the same ride all day, though - his stroller! LOL
She even rode the camel!! After I bought a ticket for her and me to ride she said she wanted to ride alone - but I already had my ticket & I wanted to ride, too!! She loved it! Wasn't afraid in the least little bit!
Aaron wasn't afraid of any of the animals either - when Emma was his age she was pretty scared usually. Not him, though- he's all boy and goes right for it all!
We also stopped to watch the mutton bustin that was going on outside & just happened to get up to the fence to see as our neighbor's little boy was about to take his turn!!! We were so excited to get to see him ride!
 Can I just say now how difficult it is to take pictures of people on a roller coaster - or any ride for that matter!! I tried every time Emma got on a ride, though...
And she was so excited when she got off each one - running up to tell us how fun it was!! And that one was her favorite - they were all her favorite! Ha ha!
Aaron wasn't as thrilled! LOL -I was glad he was able to take a bit of a nap, though.
Then Emma did finally ride one on her own - I was so proud of her!
This picture didn't come out right - like I said hard when they are spinning around and around - but I still love the expression on her face so I had to share it!! So, much enjoyment!
Since the tea cups were her favorite Emma had to do a repeat with her daddy!!
Aaron did get out & run around a little after his nap!
Emma did find one ride she didn't like - but she was brave and kept going w/out crying! Once I saw her go around one time on this & saw her face change I knew immediately she did not like it at all! I let her know, though how proud I was that she was a big girl and didn't cry!
This was hilarious - Geddo (my dad) bought a caramel apple for Emma. After she ate on it a while, she said, "Hey - there's an apple in here!!!!" I think I laughed for at least five minutes!!
Emma shared the apple with Aaron, too - I think he would have finished it for her!
Every time I looked at my parents if they weren't pushing the stroller or carrying a kid they were holding hands - it was so cute!
Heading home - we had such a great day! I still can't believe how long we were there with the kids & no one gave out...though Emma did fall asleep about ten minutes down the road! Aaron was wide awake though - his power nap had him energized!!!

(and I did have to do a tilt shift of this shot looking back on the carnival - I don't like it as much as the one from a couple years ago, but they are still fun!!)
 See??? Aren't they cute!!
It was a lot of fun! Sunday after church Michael and I worked outside for a while on a couple of little projects - it was such beautiful weather all weekend to be outside! I really hope it stays this way for a while!!