My Uncle Patrick died suddenly last Friday, he was only 53. This song has been in my head ever since I heard the news.
Monday, November 30, 2009
Sunday, November 29, 2009
Did you do National Blog Posting Month? How did you do? Was it FUN? Really that last question is the most important to me. It was FUN for me & I enjoyed it. I don't think I would want the pressure of needing to post something everyday for months on end, but for one month it was both challenging & FUN!
My goal for next month is 31 posts. With the holidays, I'm sure there will be some days that I won't post, but I'm also sure that there will be days that there is so much I want to share I will have several posts.
Saturday, November 28, 2009
On Thanksgiving morning my Mom talked to him on the phone and other than being short of breath he sounded good. She came to Thanksgiving dinner at our house and we all had a nice time. Late that night I took one last look at Facebook before bed & discovered that he had been readmitted to the ICU after collapsing outside his oldest son's in-law's home. I called my Mom.
On Friday morning my Mom called me, he had blood clots in his lungs and there was concern about his kidneys and his lungs. About a half hour later she called me again sobbing, he had died. From what we understand he died from the blood clots. He just turned 53 at the end of October.
My Uncle Patrick was very much like an older brother to me when I was little. I spent a lot of time at my Grandfather's house & the only times I remember visiting my Grandmother as a small child, my Uncle Patrick was always with me. He was 10 yrs older than me & always seemed like a giant because he was so much bigger than everyone else. I remember being really sad when he got married & joined the Navy, it was really hard going to Granpop's and having him not be there. I moved to California soon after and I only visited my Grandfather for a week or two in the Summers, Uncle Patrick's visits home never seemed to coincide with mine. We heard through the family grapevine about him, but almost never saw him.
A few years after I got married he moved to California, near where we lived & we saw him much more frequently. I was always impressed with how devoted he was to his wife and children. While most of that side of my family is renowned for their tempers, I never saw him lose his temper with anyone. Anytime there was a family crisis, he was there to hold everyone together. He was our family ROCK, our roots & our comfort, I just don't know how we are going to manage without him.
Friday, November 27, 2009
The left half of this one is GREAT, it's very rare to actually get Melanie looking at the camera with her eyes open, unfortunately the right half wasn't cooperating.
Then the left half decided to get goofy
This is probably the best from this bunch. Of course Melanie isn't looking at the camera & has her fingers in her mouth.
This is the best shot of the right half, so of course the left side decided not to cooperate.
It is rather rare these days to actually have all 6 kids together in one place, so I thought it would be nice to see just how tall they are in relation to each other.
Melanie decided she didn't want to be in the pictures anymore
Then we finally got Melanie & Lily to both cooperate....too bad Melanie's hair is in her eyes and she's got her fingers in her mouth again.
Melanie is only 4 months older than Lily, but she is a good 6 inches taller. Morgan's really been growing lately, he's suddenly about 5' 2" before long he'll be my height.
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Diaper Tip Tuesday has a THEME this month!!! I LOVE themes!!!
How to Build a Diaper Stash.
Week 4: Where and how do you get what you want on a budget (i.e. buying used, making your own, swapping, etc.).
Online, I LOVE to browse all the cloth diaper retailers. I have found quite a few great clearance deals online. Many of those diapers were brands that I had drooled over, but couldn't see paying full price for.....what's even better is that most of the time when I buy online, I am also able to find free shipping deals. Overtime, I realized that buying online also saved me money because I didn't have to pay the nearly 10% local sales tax.
I also keep an eye out in the #clothdiapers search on twitter for giveaways. I've won quite a few diapers & discovered some brands that work better than I ever thought they would. My first experience with Gro Baby was from winning one, I now own 3.
Monday, November 23, 2009
There wasn't as much interest in these coupons as I expected. I have sent an e-mail to Janet from The Money Jar and Thrifty and Chic Mom and will be sending them each a coupon when I receive mailing addresses.
Zookeeper also left a comment, but not an e-mail address...I'll hold a coupon for you until noon on Friday if you want it, send me an e-mail with your mailing address.
Sunday, November 22, 2009
FaceChipz are collectible friendship tokens that kids trade with each other to create their own secure online community on the www.FaceChipz.com website. FaceChipz.com has all the features of a real social network – but with one big difference: kids can ONLY communicate with others they’ve physically exchanged FaceChipz with – NO strangers allowed! No one can arbitrarily contact them. No one can search for them. It’s the social network YOU collect.
In order to register kids, FaceChipz verifies adult consent by processing a one dollar ($1) charge to the credit card of a parent or guardian, the proceeds of which are dedicated to cybersafety initiatives. They do this in accordance with the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998, "COPPA." . After that there are NO monthly fees EVER. Parents can also add other kids from their immediate family during this time, (or later via the Parental Controls page) for no additional charge. Other than this one-time, one dollar registration fee, there are NO subscription fees – ever. No matter how many FaceChipz a child purchases or receives, this $1 fee is all you will ever pay.
I have a feeling that FaceChipz are going to be HOT as a stocking stuffer this year. You can find them at Toys R Us & at the FaceChipz Store
Would you like to win some? I've got a pack of 4 FaceChipz to giveaway to one lucky winner.
Mandatory entry: leave a comment telling me who you would give them to if you win.
Follow me on Twitter & leave a comment with your user name
Tweet about this giveaway up to 3X per day (leave me your twitter status in a comment for each tweet)
Leave a comment telling me your favorite thing about social media & your least favorite thing
Leave a comment telling me at what age you think your kids will be ready for open social media.
I will choose a winner using Random.org on December 1st & they will have 48 hrs to respond. Be sure to leave your e-mail address in all your comments if it isn't attached to your profile.
Saturday, November 21, 2009
Friday, November 20, 2009
Check out the article and while your there enter to win a Leapster 2!
Thursday, November 19, 2009
Sunday night I will pick 6 winners using Random.org & send out an e-mail, the sooner you get back to me, the sooner I can mail your coupon. Be sure that you leave an e-mail address if your e-mail isn't visible in your profile. I will choose new winners for any coupons that have not been claimed by Tuesday afternoon.
Tuesday, November 17, 2009
Diaper Tip Tuesday has a THEME this month!!! I LOVE themes!!!
How to Build a Diaper Stash.
Week 3: What was your budget and how did you spread it out? If you didn't set an initial budget how much do you think you spent per child on your stash?
Monday, November 16, 2009
Sarah sent me a Happy Hempy to review. Happy Hempys are made of two luscious layers of Hemp Fleece, which is a combination of 55% hemp 45% cotton. This fitted diaper has a pocket for stuffing which allows you to customize the amount of absorbency your individual baby needs. Happy Hempys do need a cover. For night time use, fleece and wool covers are wonderful, as they allow baby's skin to breathe all night. The Happy Hempy is an all natural diaper. The Happy Hempy is prewashed which means that although it is hemp, you don't have to wash it ten times before it reaches full absorbency like most hemp diapers.When I first received this diaper, I washed it twice just to be sure it was ready. It was actually much bigger than I expected. I chose a large because the size chart says the large fits 20 to 35 pounds...I guess the 20 inch rise should have told me I really needed a medium. I stuffed the diaper with a hemp prefold & Melanie wore it all afternoon, including a 2 hr nap with no leaks.
Melanie will not wear a diaper over her belly button, so the excess tends to cause an extra fluffy butt.For overnight she wore it stuffed with 2 hemp prefolds with her large Stacinator fleece cover. She woke up dry in the morning.
What I like about this diaper:
- prewashed hemp
- fitted diaper
- customizable absorbency
- size chart is way out of line with how the diaper fits
- aplix closure (Melanie can take it off at will)
- one of the least trim fitting diapers we've tried
Check out the Sugar Dipes Facebook fan page for the most up to date information about promotions & new products. Sugar Dipes is a sponsor of The Great Cloth Diaper Hunt (GCDH) and is offering a 20% discount with your GCDH code....some exclusions may apply, so check with Sarah to be sure the product you are interested in is not exempt from the discount. The GCDH runs until the end of the month, if you haven't signed up go HERE and tell them that Sugar Dipes referred you!
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Tweet about this giveaway up to 2X per day, be sure to include @sugardipes, @fullnest & #clothdiapers in your tweet, leave a comment with your twitter status (up to 2 entries per day)
Tweet about this giveaway during the Monday night twitter #clothdiapers chat for an extra entry each Monday. (1 extra entry per week)
Grab my button & leave a comment telling me where I can find it (1 entry)
This giveaway will end in two weeks on Monday November 30th at 11:59 pm Eastern. A winner will be selected using Random.org The winner will have 48 hrs to contact me before a new winner is selected. If your e-mail is not attached to your profile, be sure to leave a valid e-mail address in every entry.
If you are reading this on Facebook, you must comment on my actual blog post to enter this giveaway.
Disclosure...I received a diaper to review for this post, no other compensation was received.
Sunday, November 15, 2009
- Leslie Blodgett Perfume Diaries is a limited edition fragrance collection, created exclusively for Sephora, that revisit and evoke pivotal moments in Leslie’s life. Having kept journals since she was a young girl, Leslie has captured the essence of every trip she has taken through the pages of her journals. With the release of its first fragrance, Bare Skin, these pages have been brought to life through scent, enabling Leslie’s ardent fans to walk a fragrant mile in her shoes.
- Bare Skin, the first scent in the series, harkens back to a time when Leslie was bursting with the unbridled joy of life, sunbathing on a Mexican beach and cart-wheeling fancy-free on the warm sands. “Bare Skin…” she explains, “is the way you feel when the sun is beating down on you during the day, but then you go out at night and you’re still sizzling from the warmth of the day which mingles with night air and music.”
Leslie will be making two (2) in-store appearances next week to celebrate the launch of her exclusive new fragrance collection, Leslie Blodgett Perfume Diaries! If you’re going to be in NYC on 11/18, you can meet Leslie at Sephora Times Square!
If you’re going to be in Tampa on 11/19, you can meet Leslie at Sephora International Plaza!
Saturday, November 14, 2009
Last week we received a copy of the new Jumpstart Escape from Adventure Island Wii game to review. We've had our Wii for almost a year & in that time we've discovered that our favorite games are the ones that require the players to move around. This game definitely fits that criteria. In addition it makes practicing ABC's fun for Marissa (4), practicing multiplication & division facts fun for Maggie(9) & helps Morgan (11) keep his facts sharp. There is even a dance machine that Melanie (2) enjoys with the older kids. Although only one of my kids is in the target age range of 5-9, there are things that everyone from the 2 yr old to the 11 yr old enjoy. I absolutely LOVE the fact that not only are my kids learning & reinforcing math, reading & critical thinking skills with this game, they are also happily ALL playing together. One of the worst aspects of many video games is that they seem to encourage kids to shut out the world (and their family), but this game does exactly the opposite. I highly recommend this educational & fun game to anyone with kids!
Jumpstart is having a HUGE giveaway on their blog right now.
50 winners will be randomly chosen to receive a copy of JumpStart Escape from Adventure Island, a brand new Wii™ learning adventure for ages 5-9. Plus, 3 lucky winners will be chosen to receive the Ultimate Escape Prize Pack including:
- 1 copy of JumpStart Escape from Adventure Island (rated E by the ESRB)
- 1 Nintendo Wii console – to escape boredom
- $250 in SpaFinder® gift certificates – to escape stress
- 1 Flip™ Mino HD video camera – to record your adventures
- 3 lifetime JumpStart memberships – 1 for you, 2 to share with friends
- 500 JumpStart.com virtual coins – to keep your kids’ online adventure exciting
- JumpStart gear – to dress for adventure
Friday, November 13, 2009
I went out last night for a ladies social event for church, it was a ton of fun, but once I got home (at 10 pm), I ended up staying awake until after midnight watching tv with Hubby because I'd been gone all evening. Frequently I get busy doing something in the kitchen or on the computer & I just forget to go to bed at a decent time. Late at night is the only alone time I get & while I enjoy that time, I think it is time to start making an earlier bedtime a priority for ME.
If you see me on twitter or Facebook after 11pm, I'd really appreciate a reminder that I'm supposed to be getting more sleep!
Thursday, November 12, 2009
The SwaddleBees Outlet is one of my favorite places to buy 2nd quality diapers. These diapers supposedly have minor flaws. I've bought quite a few & have yet to actually find a visible flaw. While supplies last everything in the outlet is 50% off!!!
I purchased side snap minky pocket diapers for $12.50 each!!! I also purchased Organic Cotton Velour fitted diapers for $9 each!
The outlet is physically located in their headquarters here in the town where I live, so while I was there today, I also asked Casey McClure his opinion about getting rid of STINK. Casey is a great guy & very knowledgeable. He is of the opinion that a lot of the stink issues (ammonia) that I am currently experiencing are actually from using too little detergent. I have found ways to increase the amount of water my diapers are getting in my front loading washer, now I will try increasing the amount of soap & adding an additional rinse. I would LOVE to be rid of this ammonia!
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
My reality is that I have a TON of diapers. I have 26 pocket/AI2/AIO's, 14 fitted diapers & 14 covers. These diapers are all in my rotation. I also have 2 dozen prefolds, 6 contours & 18 homemade contours that I'm currently not using.
Monday, November 9, 2009
Sunday, November 8, 2009
Looking forward to Atrium at Miss Courtney's on Tuesday & preschool choir on Wednesday for Marissa. Morgan & Maggie will be going back to having choir practice on Wednesdays too. I'm so THANKFUL to have my van running again!!!
Saturday, November 7, 2009
Have you started shopping?
Friday, November 6, 2009
What is it about Tween girls & horses? Maggie is obsessed with horses. Bella Sara is a FREE website for girls. Maggie has spent the last few weeks enjoying the games on the website. A few of the things I really like about the online game is that first of all it is FREE & the account never expires! You can purchase accessories to enhance your child's play experience, but playing the games is NOT dependent on it. The horse never dies or runs away, the child can forget about it for an extended period of time, then go back & play again without having lost anything. The messages are all positive, there is no snarky teen attitude and the horses themselves are beautiful and very appealing. Maggie will definitely be receiving more packs of cards as stocking stuffers this year. The velvety mini and the collector tins really caught my eye as well.
Go to the Bella Sara website to see all they have to offer and sign up for the FREE online games.
Here is a coupon code for Bella Sara Online Store and shop online
Promo Code: 8EV2TBA6
Savings: 20% off purchase of $15+ Expires 12.31.09
Bella Sara Trading Cards are also available for purchase at Target
Print this Coupon for 15% off at all national Target Stores
Bring printed coupon—one per transaction Expires December 7
Do you know a little girl who would like these?One lucky winner will receive a Bella's Ball card pack & a velvety mini.
Mandatory Entry: Leave a comment telling me who you would give the prize to.
Go to the Bella Sara store & come back to leave a comment about what other items you live besides the trading cards
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Tweet about this giveaway once a day for an extra entry & leave a comment
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I will pick a winner in two weeks (Nov 20th) using Random.org. The winner will have 48 hrs to get their shipping info to me or I will have to pick a new winner. If your e-mail isn't in your profile, be sure to put it in all your comments so I can contact you if you win.
Thursday, November 5, 2009
Last week, I spoke to our priest while the kids were in choir practice & mentioned that I had seen an article in the latest church newsletter about one of the church sextons (janitor) working on cars as a hobby. I asked if he thought the sexton would be willing to come take a look at my van. I was pretty sure it was something fairly simple, but had no way of taking it someplace to be looked at. Spending $100 to have it towed was totally not in our budget. Our priest took my phone number & wrote down some details about the van. A few days later I got a call from George. He is a very nice man & agreed to drive out to our house to see if he could fix the van. He brought all kinds of tools & quickly ruled out the starter as being the problem. Within an hour or so, he had the van running!! It turned out that the connections for both the battery cables were really bad and it just wasn't getting enough juice from the battery to start.
I am sooooo very THANKFUL that George was willing to do this for me! For the last several days I have been relishing in my renewed freedom. I am so eager to get back into our church routines and feel connected again to the outside world.
Wednesday, November 4, 2009
Thirsties, maker of the Fab Fitted that I LOVE has just introduced a diaper wash system that I'm really interested in trying. This system uses a prewash formula and a Super wash to naturally clean & disinfect cloth diapers. I have found a cloth diaper detergent that I really like, but this system sounds even better because of the ability to disinfect.
Tuesday, November 3, 2009
I chose the Kissaluvs contour because it was shaped to fit my baby without any folding & because the soaker was attached & couldn't get lost. I wasn't comfortable with the idea of used diapers, but I was ok with used covers because they just go on the outside to keep the wetness off baby's clothes. I have never liked velcro on clothing or shoes, so I never considered using a cover with velcro. It was a long time before I tried any diaper products with velcro, I still prefer snaps.
I think that if I had looked at EVERYTHING that first day I probably would have gotten overwhelmed again. Instead, I walked out with enough diapers to get my daughter out of disposables during the day & a definite feeling of accomplishment. Once I had made the leap to actually buying my first cloth diapers, I was no longer afraid to purchase online. The ease of using contours also helped me to get over my fear of prefolds. I started out only intending to cloth diaper part time, but quickly found I loved it so much I wanted to be rid of disposables completely.
After my initial purchase, I started watching for sales, deals & giveaways and slowly increased my stash one or two diapers at a time. My local retailer has clearances on a fairly regular basis & so do many of the online retailers I frequent. Blogs, Facebook & Twitter giveaways are always happening. By paying attention & dilligently entering the giveaways that interest me the most, I've been able to add at least 10 FREE diapers to my stash.
If you'd like to join this carnival, get the info at The Cloth Diaper Report and add yourself to the McLinky! Be sure to check back next week for Week 2: How many cloth diapers are in an ideal stash per child? What is your reality?
This is my oldest son holding his baby daughter, Lily (in yellow)and his two youngest sisters, Melanie (in pink) & Marissa. Maggie was born when he was 13, so there is quite an age gap. Lily is about 2 months old here, Melanie is 6 months, Marissa had just turned 2 in August & Maggie is 7.
Monday, November 2, 2009
Sunday, November 1, 2009
Cute Caboose is one of the sponsors and along with participating in the Great Cloth Diaper Hunt, they are also having a weekly giveaway on their website. Each week of November one winner will receive a prize package!!! A grand prize will be awarded on November 30th.