Friday, June 26, 2009

Michael Jackson

Even with his extreme strange-ness he was an icon. He did change music forever. If you are a child of the 70's and 80's like I am you can remember all of the hype of 'Thriller' and 'Bad'...and the music videos...WOW! They were incredible. I probably listened to his songs while wearing cobalt blue eye shadow and jelly shoes! Our family did not have cable until the mid 90's so my brother and I missed all of the videos first hand. I think he had a friend who would record hours of MTV at a time and we would watch it or we would catch some videos when we were at a friends house who was lucky enough to have cable! Anyway, I've been catching some of his music and videos on VH1, BET, and MTV last night and today as they've all been playing his stuff non stop. You just cannot get enough of his music...especially the early stuff. The music, lyrics, beat, and choreography of his dance is incomparable to anyone else. My heart goes out to his children during this time.
Watch and Remember

28 Months Paper Pregnant...

Sometimes I wonder how far these numbers will go? The CCAA have place children with families who were logged in through 3/20/ lid is 2/25/2007. It is going to be a while!

Monday, June 22, 2009

computers...look how far we've come...

thanks to technology the most favored form of entertainment amongst this 3 year old and soon to be 2 year old are $1,000 laptops! do you think this could pose a problem in the future?? i have my work laptop home for the summer which you can see...each kid gets there own laptop! our website of choice is starfall it is really great for introducing letter recognition, letter sounds, basic phonics, and beginning reading skills. what websites are your favorite for young learners? i need to build our repertoire! (please excuse my messy bedroom...i'm in the middle of packing/moving, remember?)

Sunday, June 21, 2009

appraisal nightmare...

So...everything seemed to be going too well in my journey to 'my first place'! (I was cautiously waiting for the last straw and I think this is it) The inspection is finished, the contract signed, the closing date set, and home insurance purchased. Now I'm just waiting on the appraisal...the second appraisal that is. I'm a nervous wreck because the first appraisal came in $45,000 under the sell price! That. is. not. good. From what I understand this is happening a lot lately for a combination of reasons. First of all they are appraising housing a new way...the lender has to use a third party to choose an appraiser. In other words the lender cannot use the same guy he always chooses and say...hey I need this house to appraise at $x and it happens. Another reason is there are so many foreclosures and short sales it is affecting the appraised value of the market.

Now what I don't understand is that when the house is appraised for 1. taxes and 2. insurance it has appraised at way over the sale price. What is happening??? So I'm trying to be patient (yet again) until tomorrow (I hope) when I will hear what the second appraisal came in at. I don't really know what the next step is if the second appraisal doesn't come in at the asking price. My greatest fear is losing my $2,000 earnest money if I have to back out of the contract solely because of the appraisal. My other greatest fear is losing this house that I've already fell in love with and started buying things for. I have receipts for everything, so I think I can return my things if the worst case scenario happens. But until I know...please pray that this appraisal comes in at the right price for me. Thank you!!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Prayer Request

This is 17 month old Ian Miller and he needs your prayers. He was recently diagnosed with a rare form of cancer. You can read more about Ian Miller at their Caring Bridge Website found here. He has already had surgery to remove a tumor from behind his eye and mid brain. Now he will begin chemo treatments to stop further growth of the cancer cells. He will be hospitalized for 80% of the time over the next 8 months. His parents, family, and doctors all need your prayers, but especially pray for this little sweetie. That he will be completely healed of all the cancer.

Too Bad...

we have to work for a living! Otherwise I'd live by the ocean and cruise as much as possible! Mom and I had a great cruise vacation! Here are some of our memories...

The sunsets were so beautiful, this was the last night.

I took an Authentic Mexican Cuisine class in Cozumel, but it wasn't that much of a learning experience:( They didn't teach any real techniques to cooking Mexican food. They already had everything chopped and prepared so all we did was put it in a pan and cook it. I was a little disappointed actually b/c I wanted to learn how to make real tortillas, guacamole, salsa, and taste different kinds of tequilas, etc. We did take one shot of tequila in the class, but it was from a Jose Cuervo bottle...not exactly "authentically Mexican"! I'm not a hard liquor drinker and I've never taken a shot, but I know there are different strengths of tequila and Mexican wines out there they use for cooking/drinking and I just wanted to learn about it.

Of course in Cozumel there was silver jewelry everywhere! Who needs it?

Just Beautiful Blue Water!

The Enchantment of the Seas

A little champagne?

We took a nap everyday before dinner!

Our luggage was a story...How can two women pack 7 bags for a 5 day vacation???? To say we over packed is an understatement! We packed way too many clothes and too few bathing suits! If you ever go on a cruise you need several bathing suits and cover ups so you always have a dry one ready when you want to use it. We had to pay $50 when we left Nashville b/c they only let you check in 2 bags each. I didn't know that. We didn't want the hassle of rearranging bags in the airport (that's so embarrassing) so we just paid the money and went on. Lesson learned!

My favorite...poolside bars!

Again, at sunset
We sailed out of Ft. Lauderdale, Fl and stopped in the Grand Cayman Islands and then Cozumel before we went home. At the Grand Cayman we went snorkeling but it wasn't that great of an experience either:( It was beginning to rain and so the water was really choppy. I've been snorkeling before and had one great experience ( at the Caymans) where the water was really shallow and clear. The fish were everywhere in every color you could imagine. I also snorkeled in the Bahamas in a similar situation as this was...very deep and choppy water. We just couldn't see any fish at all. Then it started raining very hard and we were so cold. It was just a hard afternoon. But when we got back on board the ship the staff was waiting with warm towels to greet us and it was all fine again! Mom and I decided the excursions were overrated and the ship was the place to be!
Now, I'm unpacking, washing clothes, and trying to get organized again. I was up so late last night catching up on all of my fave blogs! I was computer free for a week and I have to say it was nice, but I'm glad to be home with my laptop again to catch up on everything. I hope you are all enjoying your summer!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Virus and Vacation

My computer has a virus:( It is incredibly frustrating and inhibiting my daily life! I am unable to send any (my server) sends me messages saying that I have exceeded my daily email "allotment" and kicks all my sent messages back to me. Has this ever happened to you? It hasn't ever happened to me before. I went through all the troubleshooting guidelines and the last step was to have your computer professionally it is at the computer doctor.

Only 1 more day until mom and I sail away! We leave Saturday morning and I'm really looking forward to it. When we return I'll be totally consumed with closing on the house, packing and moving. But for now it's smooth sailing (literally), good food, fun drinks, and relaxation! See you all when we return next week!

Friday, June 5, 2009

Online Photography Class

I was very lucky to get into this photography class this summer while I have some time (between buying, packing, moving, oh yeah...and buying a house!) to devote to it. I've had my (most basic) Nikon D40 DSLR for over a year and still haven't managed to take it off of AUTO. So I'm really hoping this class helps me to learn how to use my camera to the best of it's abilities. Maybe when I master the basics I'll buy a new camera lens. Now, I only have the basic 18-55 mm lens that came with it. Does anyone know what lens I should go for next? So I have my first assignment due Tuesday and hopefully I'll get it done this weekend.

Next week is filling up quickly before our big CARIBBEAN kids! yeah, mom and I are so excited to getaway! Mom said she may look for some pirates in the ocean and beg them to kidnap her for a year so she can get some uninterrupted rest! ha! I'll have to keep my eyes on her to make sure she doesn't jump overboard! I've said it before, but it's worth mom is a work horse! She is 62 years old and runs a licensed daycare with up to 12 kids for nearly 12 hours a day. Now, she does have help, but still she is so overworked! Part of the problem is she is technologically computers to complete her paperwork. It's all done by hand. If she were comfortable on the computer, her workload could be cut in half...she could do all her taxes, payroll, payments, and state license stuff online. But that's another story.

I've been shopping like a mad woman this week. I've purchased some of my blinds for my house...did you know you can get 2" faux wood blinds at Walmart and Target these days? I've never had the need to look for them, but they are cheaper at each of these places compared to home improvement stores. I bought the sizes they had in stock at Walmart that would fit my house. I'll have to special order some of them to get the right size. But they were only about $30 each, depending on the size. I also bought all of the curtain rods for my dining and living room. I also bought two light fixtures for the foyer and dining room on ebay. I'll have to show you...

I fell in love with this simple, white chandelier because of the delicate scrolly pattern.

This light matches the chandelier and fits perfectly into the foyer.
This is the hold back for the two windows by the door...Shabby Chic line at Target $10 for 2!

This is the rod for the living and dining areas... $10 - $30 depending on the size. Then I got another rod this same color with Clear Chrystal nob ends for the nook area. My aunt bought me a beautiful petite chandelier to go in the nook. It has some crystals on it and will be so cute.

I'll try to take some pictures of the furniture I've bought so far. I've got some really cute pieces that I'm really excited about! I bought an adorable table and 4 chairs at the flea market, I've got 2 chairs for the nook (no table yet:(), two chairs for the foyer, and a beautiful antique hutch I bought today at an antique store. I also bought an adorable oil painting with a little girl having a tea party with a teddy bear today. I've bought some random stuff at Goodwill this week and a side chair for the living area. My major needs are a sofa, refrigerator, and a washer and dryer. I may luck out and be able to use my brother and sister in laws fridge (they are selling their house right now to get ready and build beside my mom) and mom had once said she'd give me her washer and dryer. But I'm not positive either of those things will work out. But I'm going to wait til the final minute before I plunk down any money. I cannot find the perfect couch! I need/want a small-ish one in white, off white, or cream with a feminine touch to it. I'm not opposed to using a slip cover, but I can't find one of those I like either. I had a bid on one on ebay, but lost it!
One other exciting thing I did this week was send some pictures of my kitchen to Layla to get her Divine/design inspiration for that space. I love pretty kitchens and mine isn't too pretty right now. One reason I'm hesitant to buy a fridge is I don't know what colors I'll eventually go to in there and therefore I'm not sure if I want a stainless, black, white, ? So I can not wait until I get her pictures back! I'll be sure to post them!
I think that about covers my week. I hope you've had a great start to summer as well. What are you looking forward to doing this summer?
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