Monday, January 7, 2019

A Look Back at 2018!


1. What did you do in 2018 that you have never done before?
-Got my nose pierced (didn't last long!)
-Rented a car (for our disney trip)



2. Did you keep your New Year's resolutions and will you make more for 2019?
I wanted to lose some weight and lost about 12 lbs. Not much, but it's a start.


3. Did anyone close to you give birth in 2018?
Surprisingly, no! My cousin found out she is pregnant, though.


4. Did anyone close to you die in 2019? 

Thankfully NO! But our sweet dog Charlie died :(

5. What states/countries did you visit this year?

Georgia and Florida. Caleb went with his Grandparents to Missouri. 

6. What would you like to have in 2019 that you lacked in 2018?

Condidence and Patience-- that is what I'm always lacking! 

7. What date from 2018 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?

Mothers Day was the day we watched our sweet Charlie die. It was so sad. 
On a happier note-- the day we walked into the Magic Kingdom with the kids! 


8. What was your biggest struggle in 2018?
My anxiety flared up pretty badly again and Ive had some struggles.

9. Did you suffer any illness or injury in 2018?
I fell and hurt my ankle pretty badly.. ended up at the hospital but thankfully it wasn't broken!


10. What was the best thing you bought this year?
A new car!

11. Whose behavior merited celebration?

Rachel did amazing at school! She made honor roll all year and made amazing scores on her End of grade tests! 

12. Whose behavior disappointed you?

My ex-sister in law. Man that girl went crazy insane. And really hurt a lot of people. 

13. Where did most of your money go?
Probably to bills, food, and Christmas gifts

14. What did you get really really excited about this year?

Our trip to Disney World and paying off some big debt

15. What song will always remind you of 2018?

"If It's Meant to Be".   Good gracious I heard that song way too much.

16. Compared to this time last year, are you: much happier, much nicer or richer?

I feel about the same-- we are a little more well off now that my job now pays more. 

17. What do you wish you had done more of? 

Spent more quality time with the kids.. a lot of the time were were working or so tired FROM working.


18. What do you wish you had done less of?

Probably should have spent less time on social media! 

19. Did you fall in love in 2018?

More in love with Hubby ;) hehe

20. What was your favorite TV Program in 2018?
My favorite new show I watched was The Good Doctor

21. What was the best book you read this year?

When We Were Young by Karen Kingsbury 

22. What was your greatest musical discovery this past year?

I got more into country music, and especially Eric Church. Thanks to my coworkers ;)

23. What did you want and get?
New floors in the living room!

24. What was the best movie you saw this year?
Kids Movie- Incredibles 2.. but also Christopher Robin. I LOVE Winnie the Pooh! 

Adult Movie- Mama Mia 2

25.What did you do on your birthday and how old did you turn?

I turned 33. Went out to dinner with some friends, and mom made homemade lasanga for me like she always does!

26. What one thing would have made your year more satisfying?
To have been able to get new kitchen floors, but we used too much money paying off debt! 
27. How would you describe your personal fashion statement this year?
Mostly khakis and polos, I am always at work!

28. What kept you sane this year? 
Jesus, anxiety meds, hubby :)

29. What celebrity did you fancy the most? 

The girls got me into Cole and Savannah Labrant, they are youtube celebrities.

30. Who did you miss this past year?
My brother and nieces who are in Florida!!!!

31. Who were the best new people you met this year?

Sylvia and Briana who became co-workers of mine! :)
32. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned this year:

Things can change in an instant, so value every moment you have. 

Sunday, January 6, 2019

December and Christmas 2018!


Early in the month of December we got some snow!! We don't get a lot of snow in NC, so it's always a big deal around here. We also got WAY more than we usually get, around 12-14 inches in our area. The kids and I aren't huge on the snow, so we took a few pictures and mostly stayed inside. But it did make the backyard look beautiful! I got a day off of work from it, so that was nice! And the kids got practically a whole week off. Our town practically shuts down when there's snow, no one knows how to handle it ;) We were so lucky we didn't lose power though, so many of our friends and family did! 





The month of December we made a lot of weekend shopping trips to buy presents! Rachel went with me most of the times, and we always had to stop by to get some treats. Sometimes it was hot chocolate from Starbucks! 





We went to see the new Grinch movie and it was so cute! And yes I really do have more than one child. but Rachel is the only one who lets me still take a lot of pictures of her! The other two are grumpy preteens these days. 





One of Rachel's favorite things to do is draw. She decided to draw some pretty Christmas themed pictures, and gave some to me and Arnold. Arnold took his to work and taped them up outside his cubicle, I thought that was really sweet. And Rachel felt proud ;) 





We did our week of Secret Santa at work. My friend Scottie had my name. I wasn't sure who mine was, but halfway through the week I started getting suspicious because of how she was always interested in what I had gotten that day ;) The first day she got me some cute owl ornaments! I collect owl stuff, so that was perfect. The next day she got me some butterfingers and funyuns, so it was a nice snack that afternoon at work. Wednesday she got me a big pack of diet cokes. Which Arnold and the kids stole from me! Thursday she got me some body sprays and cute fuzzy socks. And on the last day which was the big gift, she got me a Chick Fila giftcard, and some monogram earrings, all in a CUTE pineapple basket filled with chocolates! She did GREAT and I am thankful for all my stuff!!! :) 





This year we had planned to go to the mountains to pick out a Christmas tree, but we never made it. So we bought one down the road at Foodlion. Sometimes they have good, full trees, but this year it was a dud! I told Arnold how ugly it was, and I seriously wanted to cry because it was skinny, had bare spots, and a few branches even broke right off. But we made do with it and I learned my lesson-- next year we WILL be headed to get mountains to get a good tree! ;) 






Brooke had moved up to WOMENS size clothes! I can't believe it. At Old Navy they had some really pretty shirts I thought would be nice to wear to Christmas events, and when she saw mine she liked it. So I offered to get her the same one. I figured she'd say that was lame because we'd be matching, but to my surprise she loved it! We had to take a matching picture! Aren't we cute sisters?! ;) I always joke that I hope I age well so one day maybe people would mistake us for sisters ;) I'll only be 38 when she graduates!!!!





We had a wonderful time at Arnold's cousin's annual Christmas party. So much of Arnold's family comes over to her house and we have a big meal and it's a lot of fun. This year Beth made homemade lasanga and it was delicious! Rachel picked out the most adorable dress this year to wear, and she looked like a little candy cane! Everywhere we went people commented on how cute she was. I will miss it so much when she doesn't dress "cutesy" anymore! Anyway, I think we all looked pretty good.. even Arnie wore a tie! ;) The kids got some sweet presents, and racked up on some cash to pick some stuff out at the store, which they love doing! 






Max thought he would be my helper this year when I was wrapping gifts! Everytime id get started on one, hed come running and jump onto the paper and sit there. I had to end up putting him in the bedroom so I could finish! I started wrapping the presents and Arnold finished the ends, which I hate to do! 





Christmas morning was so much fun... we had picked out a lot of fun gifts for the kids this year. Not pictured is Brooke, who got a new cellphone. She was on cloud 9. I got a video of her opening it up. Arnold and I braved the black friday crowds to get a great deal on that phone, so I told her shed better take good care of it! She DID use her own money to buy a nice case for it, so that made me happy!!

Rachel still loves dolls and toys, which I love. This year might be the last year of buying stuff like that, so I MIGHT have went a little overboard! She ended up with a few new dolls, a Hatchimal, LOL dolls, a Fingerling panda, and all kinds of the "trendy" toys right now. One thing I got her, she was surprised she got and said she didn't even know what it was. I told her well you circled it in the toy catalog! And she said she basically circled everything! Oops! Oh well, it was fun. Arnold is just frustrated with all the little pieces around the house from all her playsets, so we have to get them organized! 





Caleb mostly wanted Xbox stuff, like games and a new controller. He also got some new Cuddleduds sheets for his bed (the SOFTEST!!) and a few other things, and of course, NEW BOOKS! He actually likes to read like I do. The girls do not really care for it :(





Arnold and I said we weren't going to exchange gifts this year, but of course he surprised me with a few things! He even wrapped them up and stuck them in my stocking.. he is so sweet. He got me a matching necklace and earrings which were a greenish stone, my favorite color! They are so pretty. And some penguin fuzzy socks. AND a 2lb Reeses pack! Those reese cups were HUGE and I couldn't finish even one in a sitting.. I felt sick after all the peanut butter. But I loved everything he got, he is so thoughful! 





Later on Christmas day we went to mom and dads house for lunch and presents. Brooke and Caleb got new hoodies. Rachel got more LOL doll stuff. I got new leggings and a Barnes and Noble gift card (Ive already bought 2 new books with it!!) I got my mom some Soma pjs, a photo calandar of the kids from this past year, and a book called Letters to Mom that I filled out for her. She said she has already read it several times and just loves it. It is filled with memories and inside jokes and everything.. I think my dad was a little jealous! I'll have to buy the Letters to Dad version for him for Fathers Day! Anyway, if you need a sentimental gift for someone, check them out on Amazon! They have versions for all family members, and teachers and friend, etc! 





Rachel recently got a new shirt that said Me plus Dad equals Awesome Squad and that is what she wanted to wear, even though it wasnt Christmas themed at all! She wanted to take a picture with her Daddy, and I guess they think they are all that ;) 




Mom of course made her FAMOUS HOMEMADE LASANGA for Christmas lunch! There is nothing btter in the world! Dad picks on me for taking so many pictures for Facebook and my blog.. he says no one cares what we are eating!! So I take a picture of her cooking at every holiday now as a joke ;) 




Later on that afternoon we went to my Grandpas house to visit for awhile, and then that night we didn't have anything to do, we decided to go out for dinner. Theres not a lot open on Christmas day, and NY Hibachi Grill was too crowded so we ended up at the Hickory Station. I had never been there before. Its not really kid friendly, but it was ok. I loved the shrimp and grits that I ordered, it was delicious! 

Sunday, December 16, 2018

Why Preschool Teachers are the Best!!!

Here's to all my co-workers and friends who do these things on a daily basis. Thanks for making a difference in the lives of sweet little ones!!






1. We spend 32, 35, some even 40 hours a week with your little ones.

2. We wipe butts, noses, and spit up off our own clothes.

3. We read books-- sometimes the same book-- over and over again.

4. We sing Baby Shark in our sleep at night because we sing it that much.

5. We soothe tantrums over lost shoes, pulled hair, and not sharing.

6. We search for and locate lost socks, pacis, and favorite toys.

7. We organize parties, special days for the kids, and help fund raise.

8. We know your kids favorite color, what they did last night, and what they say they dream to be when they grow up.

9. We can prepare a bottle, soothe a crying child, and change a diaper all at the same time.

10. We can pat 3 toddlers on different cots at naptime, trying to get them to sleep.

11. We give breathing treatments, apply icepacks, and kiss boo boos.

12. We know your child's special quirks-- how they like their bottle. the only place they will sleep, and what to do when they are grumpy.

13. We have perfected our animal sounds and special voices to get laughs.

14. We can spot a paci thief a mile away.

15. We know how to distract a class when the "scary trash man" pulls up at school.

16. We clean up cheerios, puke, and tracked in dirt off the floor.

17. We scarf down lunch, run to the bathroom, clean up the room on the rare occasion everyone is asleep at at naptime.

18. We say things like "dont lick the wall." "Put your clothes back on." And "If you sleep for just 15 minutes I'll give you a sticker."

19. We add parents on facebook so we can keep up with "our babies" as they grow.

20. We love each and every child, and secretly tear up a little when they move on to the next class.

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Life Lately: October!!



We took the kids to Oktoberfest in our hometown. Its always lots of fun but I'm always surprised how quickly you can drop soo much money! The girls rode rides... Brooke even convinved Rachel to try some of the "scarier" rides this year. Caleb doesn't do rides. He doesn't like getting dizzy or shook around, just like me! Rachel used her allowance money to buy this little walking, barking dog, which is what she is holding. She was so excited, it came with it's own leash and everything. But that this is ANNOYING! Oh well. We also got lots of yummy treats of course. 





Rachel's school had spirit night at Pelican's Snoballs, so we went by to get some after I got off work. I found out they sell a sugar free version which I got, because I've been trying to eat better..it was OK but I'd prefer the one full of sugar! :D 





Mom took the girls and I to her yearly church lunch. All the ladies in the church bring a dish, they set everything out on a HUGE table, and you walk around and try a little of each thing. I liked it all, especially the dessert part of the table ;) Everyone sends in a recipe that they put together in a recipe book for everyone to take home. They also have doorprizes, and Mom and the girls all won but I didn't this year! :( Oh well. It was funny because Brooke won a giftcard to a local coffee house, and she's just now starting to be into Starbucks type drinks. She didn't get that from me! I hate coffee! 





Arnold and I had a last-minute surprise date night, because one day the kids were off school and Mom offered to keep them overnight and the next day. We went to Red Lobster for some SHRIMP! It was awesome! I may have had to show up in my work uniform, but it's all good. 





The best part of the month was that my brother flew to NC for a few days! We hadn't seen him in over a year! I was so happy I was tearing up. We got to eat dinner over at mom and dad's several times that week, and spend time with him, which was wonderful. He's had such a tough year, but I'm proud of him for being such a strong, good guy. 





Friday night the kids said we just HAD to take uncle Alex to DEFY to jump! They all had a blast, and I got several videos of them all jumping and being crazy. Afterwards we went out to dinner at Mellow Mushroom. Making memories like these is one of my favorite things! 





One of the babies in my class at work, Avery, just turned one! She is the daughter of a co-worker of mine, so she's extra special to me ;) She "loves" unicorns just like Rachel, so her party was Unicorn themed! I took the girls and we had a great time. Avery even walked over to me when she saw me come into the party, and sat down on my lap. It always makes me feel special when the babies bond with me! :) Avery recently moved up to the toddler room, but I still get to see her most afternoons! 





I took Caleb and Rachel to see the new Goosebumps movie. Brooke and Arnold had plans that day. It was pretty good, not as good as the first one though. Most sequels aren't in my opinion! I used to read all the Goosebumps books when I was a kid! Who am I kidding, I read everything I could! ;) Now Caleb reads the books, too, and I love that :) 





We celebrated Mom's birthday at Carrabba's! It was when Alex was in town, so he got to come, also! Grandpa came too! We had some yummy Itatlian food, and got to spend more time with Alex before he left the next day. At the end of the dinner, the sweetest waiter came out and sang Happy Birthday to mom. And MAN did he have a great voice! Everyone around us clapped when he was done! 





One day I went in to work later than usual, and got to go have lunch with my sweet Rachel! She didn't know I was coming, so I just showed up at school and surprised her! She was so happy!





We took the kids to a local pumpkin patch. We went to the same one last year. It was WAY to hot to be October.. it didn't even feel like fall yet. But we had fun. We went on a hayride, saw the animals, went through the corn maze, then the kids all picked out a pumpkin.





The girls ended up painting their pumpkins this year, instead of carving them. Rachlels was "galaxy" and Brooke's was "mermaid." I ended up finding silver glitter ALL over the place for days after this! 






We had Spirit Week at the preschool, and on disney day I dressed as Minnie Mouse! My boss had ears we got to borrow, so I just added a red shirt and black leggings I had, and a white necklace! The babies were a little confused as to why we all looked a little different! ;) 





We also had a PJ day! It was fun wearing them to work, because it felt like we were laid-back and relaxed all day! Can we make this a regular thing?! ;) 





The kids all picked out their costumes this year! I am surprised Caleb dressed up, because he usually hates halloween. He was scared a few years ago at a haunted house and said he didn't want to participate anymore. But he changed his mind when he saw a character from one of his favorite video games! Brooke chose Batgirl (shes now in a WOMAN size costume!!) And Rachel picked a pirate girl! 





Several of the girls from the preschool dressed up on Halloween as emojis! I was the winky face. I wanted to be the nerd but my friend Ashley stole that idea first! ;) 





We took the kids trick or treating Halloween night! Sheldon rode around with us in the van this year. I dressed him up as a Walrus! He was so cute. Although it bothered him everytime the kids went up to a house. He is so protective of his kids! ;) This will be Brooke's last year trick or treating and probably Caleb's, too. I am sad because it feels like another chapter in their lives is over, but I know they have to grow up sometime! 

Sunday, October 7, 2018

Month in Review: September! Welcome Fall!

What we were up to in September! That month FLEW by!!!!!





I deocorated around the house for Fall! I added more things later on that were more for Halloween, etc. I love especially doing the mantle every year. I love when Michaels does their 60 percent off Fall sale and you can get decor for pretty cheap! I got the pumpkins, Fall sign, and little fox last year. The owl was given to me as a gift from my Mother in law. And the family picture that sits up there is pretty old! Guess it's time to get a new picture of us done! 





I also found some new finds at KIRKLANDS this year! I could spend all day in that store and spend way too much. I loved this doormat but they only had a few left, and one of them had a "D!" It was my lucky day! 




I also change out my little flag outside with the holidays and seasons, so I liked this witch hat. 





I made Arnold and the kids go with me to a Newton Conover football game! It was a particularly special night, because they were playing East Burke, which is where our kids will go to highschool! I kept picking on Brooke saying that my old team was way better than her's, and we DID crush them.. haha. I love crisp fall nights and watching football.. unfortunately my kids dont care for it too much. I was able to keep them happy for awhile by buying them candy and stuff at the concession stand. Brooke loved watching the marching band at halftime! She plays trumpet in the middle school band,and as of now her plans are to play in highschool too! I was in marching band my freshman year of highschool but I wasn't that great. I guess I just don't have the musical talent.. haha. But hopefully the kids will inherit that from Arnold! 





Everyone around NC and SC were waiting on a big hurricane to come through one weekend in early Sept. We prepared and stocked up on stuff, and even got out of work on that Friday. My mom found this list that Rachel had been writing at her house, about getting ready for it! So cute. I guess she really does listen to Arnold and I more than I thought ;) All we ended up getting was some rain. Not even enough to flood our yard or be dangerous. I was SO relieved, but I felt like the whole thing was so over-hyped! I couldnt find bottled water ANYWHERE! We ended up buying the expensive stuff. Which was ok because it was delicious, and I was sad when we went back to buying foodlion brand! ;) 





Poor Rachel got sick with strep last month. She got on some antibiotics and was better after awhile. Although she did miss 2 days of school pretty early in the year! Last year she got perfect attendance but I guess that won't be happening this year! ;) And shes been wearing all her cute new outfits to school! I especially love this one because of the cats reading books! Target is on point with their cute stuff! 





We decided to go out as a family to Cracker Barrell one evening as a family after a long day. We haven't been in a long time. The kids love to walk around and browse the store while we were waiting for our table. Seeing all the Christmas stuff in there makes me excited for the next few months! We ate breakfast for dinner and it was delicious! This was of course before starting our diets! No more pancakes for awhile! :( The kids wanted to pick out a candy in the store before we left, so we said ok. I even got a rock candy stick. I am a big kid at heart, I swear! Especially with sugar! ;) 





We celebrated Dad's birthday mid-month, and then on the 21st he had surgery. Arnold and I took the day off from work and took him and mom down to Charlotte. The surgery was done at Carolina Medical Center. He had back surgery, where they fused some discs and hopefully this will get rid of his pain and help him move around more easily. He had a knee replacement surgery last year, so sooner or later he should be tip top! haha. Anyway, Mom, Arnold and I waited in the waiting room all morning watching Fixer Upper on the tv in there. Arnold and I slipped away to the hospital cafeteria and ate breakfast alone. It was a like a little date for us! ;) I watched all the nurses and doctors running around and talking and getting food and it felt like I was in Grey's Anatomy. Unfortunately there were no Patrick Dempseys there that day :( HA! Around lunchtime we got an update that dad was almost done and doing well, and would be awhile before he was moved to a regular room, so we went out to lunch at a local Italian place called Open Kitchen. MOm and dad used to live in Charlotte when they were dating and first married, and they used to go to that place all the time! The pizza there was delicious! After lunch we went back and waitied a while, then finally got to go see dad in his room. He was pretty drugged and being silly, but I was glad to see him doing well. He was giving the nurse a hard time, trying to get out of there that night.. he hates staying in hospitals. But he ended up having to stay 2 night so he could be monitored and made sure everything was ok. He got to come home on Sunday and Arnold helped mom get him home and inside. He is recovering pretty well as of now. 





Joanne and I got to get together and go see GREASE at the local play theater! We dont get to see each other that much lately due to work and kids, so it was fun! Grease is my all-time favorite movie! They did SO good in the play! The acting, singing and dancing was on point. I really get jealous when I watch talented people like that! ha! ;) I was smiling so big so many times.. it was a feel-good show. The cutest old couple were sitting beside us and all dressed up in a dress and suit, on date night. I hope Arnold and I are like that one day ;) Although he HATES musicals! 





The kids had fall picture day at school! We found this CUTE outfit at JC Penneys for Rachel to wear. Its been a HOT fall so far, so the sleeveless shirt was perfect. It came with a pretty locket necklace, too.I promise I DID curl her hair up that morning, but it was already going flat by the time we left. The kids are just like me with their straight, thin hair. And the weather and humidity just makes it worse! But its ok, she was very cute! Can't wait to get all their pictures back and framed! 





We have been cheering on the Panthers!!! That's our team, baby! One of the Sunday nights we went over to mom and Dad's and ate dinner and watched the game over there. We all had to wear our Panthers gear over there. Even Caleb has a shirt although he couldnt care less about football! :D The Panthers creamed the Cowboys which made me so happy! I had to give my friend Kim a hard time about that one! ;)





Arnold took the kids to South Mountain and they hiked up to the waterfalls! 





My mother in law is the yardsale queen. She is up so early every saturday morning in the summer and early fall, and goes to all of them around and knows how to get a great deal. She found this cabinet for CHEAP at one and gave it to me! I know its technically supposed to be in a kitchen or dining room with dishes I think, but I used it in the living room and put a bunch of decorative stuff in it, a lot of which were passed down from my Grandma! I love being able to see them every day! 





My amazing friend Kim turned 50!!!!!!!! And we had an awesome time celebrating her birthday! Ashley and I tried to plan her a surprise party, but things got messed up and Kim ended up knowing about it. But it was ok, because several of us from work went out to dinner and had an awesome GIRLS NIGHT OUT to celebrate! I brought a cake and Ashley brought gold balloons and plates. The table beside us had a birthday and the sweet older man was singing to their family member, and when he found out it was Kim's birthday too, he sang happy birthday to her too! I think all the tables around us were quite amused... but it was  funny and I had a great time!! These girls have become so special to me and the past year Ive really enjoyed working with them, getting to know them, and being able to vent or share things with them. I am thankful they are in my lives!!!!! :)