Friday, December 31, 2010

2010 in review

2010 was a big year for us!

January: We returned home after a 2 week vacation to New York and Christmas with the family and decided to purchase a house....and we did!

Febuary: Closed on our first home.

March: We donated D's highschool/college car/deathtrap.

April: D and I (and our dear, loyal, hard-working friends) DEMOLISHED our deck and put in a patio. May: While we were at it, we also decided to re-landscape the front about naive new homeowners! Two giant projects in two months! So we took a little break and visited Holmes County, Ohio where I fulfilled a life long dream and spent some up close and personal with (my fav!!) giraffes!!


after: June: I won BIG!! at the our church festival.
July: D and I went zip lining at D's family reunion!
August: K moved to Alaska, D went to DC to see Glenn Beck, and D and I celebrated our 2nd wedding anniversary.

September: H2D2 got married! D and I went to Traverse City.

October: Annual Pumpkin Carving Party

November: A normal month at home!

December: The readers of The Halley Daily wrote and collected 1,888 Christmas cards for our servicemen and women overseas! D and I ventured to Kentucky to sample bourbon. I also spent some time visiting with K and A while they were home from Alaska.

WHAT A YEAR!! I am excited to see what 2011 brings us.

Wishing you a Happy New Year, with good health, wealth, family and friendships!


Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Merry

Merry Christmas!

My family is scurring preparing breakfast, the gifts are wrapped and anxiously waiting to be opened, coffee is flowing, and carols are floating through the house.

It's perfect.

Wishing you and yours a wonderful day.

Jesus is the gift.


Thursday, December 23, 2010

brain dump/catch up

Hi blog friends!

You'll have to excuse my lack of blogging lately, I've been cooking, cleaning, and visiting with a lot of YOU lately and am trying to enjoy/live in the moment!

*D and I had a fantastic time travelling through Kentucky and sampling bourbon. I highly recommend this trip.

*I worked all week last week in a special ed classroom. It was a nice week, however, we had a major lice outbreak...just thinking about it make me itch! ugh!

*I hosted our annual cookie exchange last week, we enjoyed a roaring fire, honeybaked ham, and lots of delicious cookies.

*I shipped my last box of Christmas cards to the troops. Drum Roll, Please....our grand total of Christmas Cards was 1,888. AMAZING! We shattered our goal of 1,000. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

*D and I enjoyed dressing up and dancing and eating copious amounts of shrimp at his company's holiday party.

*Last night we had a blast sledding with friends. Every time I went down the hill I literally lost my hat. ha! Then we enjoyed our local bar food at The Fern.

*Today D is taking a vacation day and happily sleeping in. I am headed to see Doc Todd to get a cyst on my wrist removed and a flu shot. We will be enjoying some Waffle House (because D requested it and it's goood) and then heading home to start celebrating with our families! I can't wait.

Ok, that's everything in my brain. I will catch up after Christmas!

Merry Christmas!!


Tuesday, December 14, 2010

current card count...


You guys are too much. I am continually touched and impressed by your dedication to this project. Who would have guessed that some girl in Ohio with a blog and a few friends could accomplish such a huge task. Thank you so very much.

Thursday is our deadline.


lamaze breathing at the grocery

It's the holiday season and grocery shopping is inevitable...the problem is that everyone and their brother is grocery shopping...and grumpy.

Me? I had to make my big holiday grocery trip today (baking items, party supplies, normal everyday food). So I walk into the grocery wearing my red scarf and gloves, humming Jingle Bells, trying to be friendly, only to be slammed into by a cart. ?? The man didn't even apologize. Alright, I think, shake it off and keep shopping. Then I get cut off by an old lady in the cheese aisle. I remind myself to take a deep breath, smile, and keep's the holidays. Before I know it I am lamaze breathing (to keep calm, ha!) and reminding myself over and over that it's Christmas, people are busy, but I am able to pay my bills, keep my house warm, and put food on my table, so I am give everyone a little grace and refrain from stress.

Then I dropped my eggs in the parking lot.

At this point all I could do was laugh.

Have you ever heard the phrase, Too blessed to be stressed?

Thats how I feel this Christmas season. I am so thankful for D, our home, friends, and family. We are truly blessed. So instead of stressing out this Christmas I am laughing at the mishaps and smiling at the grumpies and wishing everyone I see a Merry Christmas.


Sunday, December 12, 2010

loving it

D and I just returned home from a quick getaway to Kentucky, where we toured and tasted our way through "Bourbon Country." Pictures to come soon.

Our house is beautifully snow covered and Christmas lights are twinkling, our fireplace is lite, It's a Wonderful Life is playing on the tv, and D and I are passing ice cream between ourselves and drinking our prospective warm drinks (tea for me, coffee for D). : )

1, 508!!!!
Can you believe it!?
Thank you so very much. You have touched my heart with your generosity.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

whoa, we're half way there....

Guess what I'm holding in my sticky little hands??

521 Christmas Cards!!

We are over half way there everyone!

You all I am in absolute tears I am so thankful for these Christmas cards!

Thank you, thank you, thank you!!

Please continue to send/give me or D your completed cards. You are making a difference this Christmas!


Monday, December 6, 2010

St. Nicholas Day

My stocking got filled today!! : )

St. Nicholas Day is a Catholic feast day that celebrates..... St. Nicholas! Traditionally St. Nicholas comes on his feast day and fills the stocking of boys and girls and grown men/women ha ha

I was super pleased to find all kinds of goodies in my stocking today. D...I mean...St. Nicholas brought me a Christmas cookie magazine, a Le Creuset mug, Reeses Christmas trees!!, an apple, an orange, and Lindt Truffles. Apparently Christmas time brings out my sweet tooth!

D got some treats too, fancy work gloves, a WWII dvd, and sunflower seeds (Costco style).

How fun!?

yay! Catholic holidays!


I am sending the first box of Christmas cards today!!
Each box contains 250 cards and is very much appreciated.
You have no idea what this means to me.
I am ecstatic that so many of you are participating!
Thank you so very much.
A/S thank you for hosting a wonderful "Thank God It's Christmas" party. As a group we completed 150 cards. : )
A big thanks to H2D2 for a box of cards (and an impromptu Christmas photo...can you e-mail me those?)
D sent out an e-mail and his co-work J donated a completed box of cards the next morning! Thank you J!

Thursday, December 2, 2010


Today I turned 25 years old.

There were a few things I didn't realize about 25...

1. You have to get a new drivers license. Mercifully, I had a sweet lady take the new picture and she retook it twice in order to get the best picture. awesome.

2. About 2 months ago I noticed a few gray hairs while combing my hair. hmm...

3. When I was younger (think 18) I thought 25 year olds were real adults. gulp. I guess that makes me one.

I am so thankful my friends and family. For their well wishes, cards,and the roles they play in my life.

K sent me a Sarah Palin tote bag, all the way from Alaska. I laughed until I cried.

D is taking me out to lunch and finishing up Christmas lights all while listening to ENDLESS Christmas music (he is a patient man.)

I am so blessed.


On a different note, I think my mom should get to celebrate today as well. She raised a stubborn toddler, emotional, perfectionist teenager, and listens daily while I consult her about my life decisions (such as, Should I go back to grad school? What should I make for dinner? etc. etc.)! ha! Love you mom! You deserve a birthday celebration as well!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

it's snowing! it's snowing!

Guess I should take the pumpkins off my porch?

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

It's my birth week!

: )

Thanksgiving at home was wonderful. We had plenty of time to visit with our families and friends. I ventured out on Black Friday and scored some amazing deals. We played board games and drank Starbucks. D and I enjoyed a date night including Dewey's pizza, Second City, and the Mynt Martini. Now we are home, decorating for Christmas, and catching up on DVRed shows.

....and so begins the Christmas season....

oh yeah, and my birthday is this week! ha Thursday is my birthday but D is taking Friday off of work and we are going to Columbus to FINALLY see Harry Potter, eat at the Melting Pot, and see the lights at the Columbus zoo. What a perfect day? I am so so excited.

In other news I have received 125 Christmas cards for soldiers overseas!! Amazing.
Thank you to everyone that's contributed (Grandma+friends and my sister-in-law E)!!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

buttoning up our house..

We are leaving this evening to visit our families and hometown for Thanksgiving.

I have this weird obsession with leaving our home clean and "buttoned up" while we are away.

I dust, sweep, vacuum, organize, and make everything presentable.

I suppose I just like coming home to a clean, welcoming house.

Any weird traditions you have before leaving your house to travel?


Monday, November 22, 2010

this weeks gonna be a good week...

It's Thanksgiving week! yay! turkey and mashed potatoes and g r a v y!!

We have a slightly busy and fun week ahead of us.

Today I am headed to Costco (my fav) with 2 1-year-olds. uh.... : ) If I survive that adventure, this evening D is going to put up our Christmas lights! I am so so excited that we have a home we can decorate this year. I can't wait to drive home after visiting family, only to be welcomed home by twinkle lights.

Tomorrow night we will be heading home to visit our families for Thanksgiving.

Wednesday I am jeans shopping (seriously, last week I was folding laundry and noticed that my favorite pair of jeans has a giant hole in the behind. giant. who knows how long it's been there!) and we might take a trip to the shooting know to spend quality time as a family. Of course, Wednesday night is the biggest bar night of the year so we'll be participating in that wholesome activity as well. ha ha

Thursday is Thanksgiving AND MY MOM'S BIRTHDAY! We are doing things a bit differently this year, we are spending all day Thursday with D's family. I can't wait to eat Aunt M's homemade yeast rolls and J's little belly bump! I am anticipating some wine and domino playing in my near future!

Friday is for shopping and sleeping. D and I have front row tickets to see Second City, an improv comedy group, at Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park. I am super looking forward to this show.

Saturday my family is celebrating Thanksgiving. My brother and his girlfriend are traveling to join us I haven't seen T in about 8 months, it will be so nice to see him and have my entire family under one roof. We are also simultaneously celebrating D, my mom's, and my birthday!

Sunday we will be recooperating and heading back to our little home.


looking foward to it....


Sunday, November 21, 2010


Happy Birthday D!!

You are 26 years old...I'm sorry but when I was like 16 I thought 26 seemed so old! ha ha Now 60+ seems old (sorry 60+ readers! : )

I love you, I hope your 26th year is way better than your 25th.


Thursday, November 18, 2010

Don't forget about the Christmas Card Campaign!

Here is a link to the orginal post. Tell your friends, link to my blog, send an e-mail. : )

Glory be to God!!

I have literally been holding my breath for days, riddled with anxiety, and sweating to death.


I thought I lost my Garmin.


the horror, the horror

I remember seeing it when I last cleaned and vacuumed the car.

Then I could not for the life of me, remember where I put it.

Listen, I cherish and adore that little gadget. I knew I would not put it somewhere unsafe. I had a moment of panic where I debated whether or not my car had been broken into again. I didn't even tell D about my fears....because...well...I feared they were true!

What would I do without my beloved Garmin? I can't go to Costco without the Garmin, I can't find my way our town without my Garmin, and GO OUT OF TOWN? not happening without my Garmin.

I have been up since 7am tearing my house apart. It's 10:33am and I just found a purse that I thought I had emptied and put away.

Glory to GOD!! Thank you Jesus. Thank you St. Anthony. Thank you, Thank you!

From now on, I will not be letting my sweet, darling Garmin out of my sight.


Wednesday, November 17, 2010

these are a few of my favorite things:

Dear Santa and D and mom,
You asked for a Christmas list and here you have the moment these are a few of my favorite things....

I adore this nativity scene. a.d.o.r.e. it.

I am also into these decorative pedestals, minus the pumpkin dome. : )

My toes are freezin all the time.

Oh, Martha Stewart is cool. I'd love a subscription!

A classic, that I don't have yet.

GLEE!!!! Need I say more?
There is going to be a Christmas album too *cough cough my birthday is Dec 2*

I stinkin' love this stuff. It's like $3 from Walgreens and I'd like lots of it.


I am feeling pretty cold these about a space heater? ha ha




Who needs a happy hour drink?! THIS GIRL!

: )

It's been one of those days!! The spring on our garage door broke (bummer), the mechanic can't figure out what's wrong with my car BUT isn't going to charge me for looking it over and keeping it three days (sorta a bummer?), and I stinking miss my husband...who I haven't seen for more than 10 hours in two weeks (bummer).

Trying to keep busy by working ahead on my school work, visiting friends, and crafting.

But I could really use a drink!

Margarita anyone?


p.s. Would it be bad if I went to happy hour alone? Like I was desperate (maybe) or trying to pick up guys (not so much)?

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

home for the holidays

Most people I know travel home to be with family during the holidays. This year D and I will pack up and make the two and a half hour drive to be with our families for Thanksgiving and Christmas.

While we are thankful to be together we are also sorely missing a family member that cannot travel home for the holidays....D's cousin J who is serving his country, as a Marine, in Afghanistan.

So, I started thinking about J's service to his country and how much I love visiting with family during the holidays and how homesick he must be and I decided to start a Christmas Card Campaign for the Troops.

Ya'll this is so easy and will mean so very much. I am hoping to send a thousand cards this Christmas season to our troops over seas.

ambitious? uh huh, but this is close to my heart and important.

Here's what you need to do:

1. Buy a package (or two!!) of Christmas cards *no glitter cards please*
2. Take some time with your family to sign each card and write a small message.
3. Put the cards in their prospective envelopes
4. And them give them to me!! I will pay for the shipping and handling of the cards.

This is so so easy. Please consider participating.

Feel free to e-mail me at with any questions or details.

Make a difference this Christmas season.

much love,

Sunday, November 14, 2010

eating chili with H Potter

I'm all curled up with my Nyquil blanket, eating turkey chili (yum and healthy) watching Harry Potter...if D HAS to be away, this is an ok way to spend the evening : )

a well stocked pantry

D is out of town and I have a bit too much time on my hands so I've organized my pantry and started making a list of items that we should always have on hand. "They" say that with a well stocked pantry can provide weeks of healthy meals in case of emergency (as in you don't feel like going to the grocery store emergency... or it's super cold outside emergency...).

So I started thinking about items that D and I always have on hand:

* ingredients for tomato soup and grilled cheese (for quick lunches or lazy dinners)
* ingredients for chili
* pasta (various sizes, shapes, etc)
* pasta sauce
* artichokes
* canned tomatoes
* taco seasoning
* onions
* garlic
* mac and cheese (yes, the kind in the blue box)
* bread (some combination of white, bagels, naan, english muffins)
* cereal
* chicken and beef stock
* salt, pepper
* flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder

In the fridge and freezer we always have:

* cheese (parmesan, cheddar, mozzarella)
* milk
* eggs
* chicken breasts
* ground beef and turkey

What are your pantry and fridge staples?


Monday, November 8, 2010

overheard at church...

Mom: Are you going to be a good girl during mass?

2 year old: uh huh

Mom: That's right sweetie...because you know who's watching?

2 year old: ????

Mom: Jesus and Santa

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

a new low..

I have been DRAGGING lately! I have loads of schoolwork and housework to do, but zero motivation. none.

Wanna know what K suggested I do?

Turn on Christmas music....

Oh, it's been blasting at the D/H household all afternoon now with zero chance of turning off anytime soon.

I know it's early, but right now I need a little Christmas, right this very minute and it IS after Halloween! ha ha


Tuesday, November 2, 2010

on my soapbox

Did you?

Voting is a privilege and honor. Please take some time today to research the candidate's and make a difference in our country. As a responsible adult and citizen this is your civic duty.

....and now I'll step down from my soap box

Happy Election Day!!

Did you know that voting has it's perks?! Many businesses are giving away free products to those wearing an I voted sticker!

Chick fil a - free sandwich Krispy Kreme- free doughnut Starbucks- coffee

You get the idea. GO VOTE!


Monday, November 1, 2010

holiday guests

D and I live 2.5 hours from our hometown/families.

That means we have a lot of guests. frequently. Truthfully, we like having's easier and more fun than driving 2.5 hours to visit "home."Plus it's fun to show off our new "hometown."

When we bought our house we made sure we had a designated guest room.

That was a good investment. : )

Here are a few points and tips I've acquired from my house guests:
1. Stock the guest bath: New soap, extra toothbrushes, shampoo/conditioner, q-tips, a hairdryer, and plenty of toilet paper...try to anticipate what your guests will need and have it there before they can ask. I like to pick these items up at TJ Maxx, on sale, etc.
2. Keep extra linens and pillows in the guest room
3. It's also a good idea to keep a space heater and fan in the guest room
4. Set out the *prepped* coffee pot before bed, this makes it easy and accessible for guests in the morning.
5. Little treats make everyone feel special and welcome: a magazine you know your guest will love on the nightstand, fresh baked cookies, bread, or baked goods (who doesn't like cookies?!), or an extra blanket on the couch for visiting on cozy winter nights.
It's the little thoughtful gestures that help your guests to feel at home in your home. While I don't always accomplish all of these tasks for my guests, I try to do one or two. : )
Any other suggestions?

Sunday, October 31, 2010

....tis the season

Tomorrow is November 1st.

Um...where did this year go? Seriously?

For me, November marks the (early) beginning of the holiday season. That means baking, guests, parties, shopping, etc.

I'm not going crazy, just preparing.

My goal for this holiday season is simplicity.

I'm going to bake some cookies, spend quality time with friends and family, and enjoy the season. I am going to make a point of not stressing out about the little things. I am going to think and reflect about the true meanings of Thanksgiving (being thankful) and Christmas (Jesus).

Hold me accountable for that. k? thanks.

I love love love the upcoming traditions and nostalgia associated with the holiday season.

Tomorrow I'll be talking about preparing for and hosting guests gracefully....tis the season for guests! : )


Friday, October 29, 2010

trick or treat..and halloweeen weekend

Last night was trick or treat and I was pumped!! and then I was deflated when I learned that D would not be home in time to pass out playdoh with me. Yep, playdoh.

So I pouted and mouped and felt very very sorry for myself.

Then the doorbell rang and in front of me stood 5 little trick or little that they forgot what to say. I showed them my big big bowl of playdoh and told them they could pick any color they wanted. One little boy turned back to his mom and yelled "playdoh! playdoh mom! we got playdoh!" and my pouty little heart soared!!

After about an hour of making little kids fist pump the air and jump for joy over my awesome Halloween treats, I packed up and crossed the golf course to go to H2D2's house.

You all....they had more candy than I've ever seen. lots. and. lots. of. candy.

We watched Prom Night, drank some Witches Brew (spiced wine), and they waited for more trick or treaters. I was glad for the company and had never seen the classic? Prom Night.

When I left, I left with half of their leftover candy, which had to be 300 pieces. (Really guys, I feel bad about taking that candy!) I got home just as my family pulled in the driveway and showed them my loot.....THAT lead to watching Greys Anatomy and "passing the candy bowl"(hahahaha!!) so to say.

It was a great great night.


Thursday, October 28, 2010

everytime there's a pumpkin party, a halley gets some germs....

Post Pumpkin Party 2009-swine flu
Post Pumpkin Party 2010-stomach virus

You all I have been so so sick. FAR worse than Salmonella sick.

Thankfully I am on the mend.

Tonight is trick or treat (the first in our new home!!). D is out of town for the day and evening so my parents are coming to visit and help pass out candy. : ) However, I am not passing out candy...I am giving out Playdoh. Personally I think it will be a hit...but I love candy and am missing having it in the house ha ha

As soon as I'm back on my feet I will be blogging some more. promise.


Friday, October 22, 2010

I stink.

In the last 24 hours I have...

..been to the laundry mat
..washed, dried, folded, and put away 7 loads of laundry
..loaded D's truck with my mom
..been to the dump @ 7am (yes, 7am)
..unloaded 500lbs of trash and junk (no, not kidding)
..cleaned the house top to bottom
..found a few missing earrings in the cleaning process
..purchased food and beverages for 30 pumpkin party guests
..prepared said food for the 30 pumpkin party guests
..decorated and prepped the house
....and now I stink.

excited for tomorrow!!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

pumpkin party coutdown: 5 days

Truth: As much as I love entertaining...sometimes...most of the time....all of the time it stresses me out. I fuss and worry about every detail. I clean, clean, clean and attempt to stage my house like a Pottery Barn catalog. I just don't let myself enjoy the party because I want everything to be perfect.

This year at the D/H household I've had a change of heart about my entertaining perfectionism. Do I want my house to feel warm and inviting? yes. Do I want my house to look perfectly staged and have my guests feel uncomfortable moving a pillow or playing cards around a just, right, perfect centerpiece? no.

Truth be told, if you are invited to our home you are friends AND I don't need to impress friends.

I did not come by this thought process easily. I have so much pride attached to my ability to be a homemaker. I want my home to be beautiful, my food the most delicious, and my parties? the best.

uh...that's pride ladies and gentlemen...and not the good kind.

So, this year for our pumpkin party (which is slated to be the biggest party yet) I am letting my hair down. I am not cooking gourmet food. I am cooking easy, comforting, tummy warming chili. I am not stressing about the perfection of my home. This house is where we live and it looks like people live here. Decorations will be simple and festive, not over the top and the impressive.

Entertaining is about welcoming people into your home and sharing time with them. It is not about impressing your guests. While I want all of you to enjoy yourselves, immensely, I want it to be because you spent time with good friends, laughed, and enjoyed some yummy food...not because I am the hostess with the mostess.

Do you know what I mean?

Pride, aside, I think this will be the best pumpkin party D and I have thrown only because I will not be stressing my husband out with my stress about entertaining. ha!


Sunday, October 17, 2010


Our 'welcoming' fall front porch. My next door neighbor (who is 4) picked out the green pumpkin on the bottom right for "Mr. D" haha What does it say about D that a 4 yr old saw a green pumpkn and thought of him? : )
I love my monster mums from Costco.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

these are the days..

Saturday morning at the H/D household means early morning coffee and doughnut runs. Recently we have discovered the yumminess that is Tim Horton's Apple Fritter Timbits and it is a good thing.

Today is crisp and sunny. I'm wearing my work hat (aka. a ladies New Balance hat with paisley swirls, that I only wear on work days so I don't have to wash my hair! ; ) and yoga pants. D is working in the yard and I'm bringing him snacks/drinks. The un-stolen Ipod is playing in the garage. Our neighbors are out and about and frequently come by to chat. I am hunting around for backyard treasures, pinecones and acorns. Around here, there are mums to be planted, pumpkins to be picked, and apple cider to be drank.

....and I am lovin' it.

Tonight I anticipate firepits, huddled neighbors, and hot chocolate.

These are the days.


Thursday, October 14, 2010

Fall Playlist

k...I know this is weird but there are certain songs that remind me of fall, or that would be perfect for driving in the fall. I think I like them because some are reflective and calm, while others are upbeat and induce toe-tapping but are not too upbeat like summer songs. Know what I mean?

a few fall songs...
Fearless-Taylor Swift
First Time-Lifehouse
Hallelujah-Jeff Buckley
100years-Five for Fighting
Dream- Priscilla Ahn

Do any songs remind you of Fall?


workin hard

D and I have been working non-stop around our house. Seriously the man comes home, changes his clothes, and is sanding, shovelling, moving, hammering, or cleaning something. Don't worry I am right there with him, doing something.

: )

We are preparing for our upcoming pumpkin party, which (cross your fingers) will be held in our backyard. The same backyard that lived through the upheaval of replacing the deck with a is some work to be done back there!

I am super impressed with everything we've accomplished. We just need to make it through the weekend and then we'll be done.

Cheer us on!


Wednesday, October 13, 2010


This happened to me today, or last night. I was ijacked. We'll consult urban dictionary for those of you that aren't "in the know."

Someone stole your Ipod
" I left my ipod laying around and it was ijacked!"
Me? I left my ipod in my car. in. my. driveway. and some lovely fool opened my car door in. my. driveway. ruffled through the console and took the ipod from my car. in. my. driveway. and some change.
The same fool left my Garmin (praise God, xoxo love you Garmin!) but stole quarters and dimes?
Anyway I called the police to file a report, only to learn I was not the only homeowner to have items stolen from their cars in. their. driveways. last night. The sheriff told me that he's had deputies out and about filing at least 6 reports this morning!
Thankfully nothing else was stolen and the car was not damaged. However I feel like my bubble has been popped regarding safety and security in my neighborhood. Someone just walked up my driveway and stole from my car 25 feet from my bedroom?! Makes me feel sick to my stomach.

I'll be locking everything up tight tonight...and our plan to clean out the garage will be pushed up from Saturday so I can put away the car.



Monday, October 11, 2010


Today I had the opportunity to spend some quality time with my brother and to enjoy the gorgeous fall foliage in Ohio. It was a good day. I spent a few hours in the car driving alone. I am thankful for the time to enjoy my surroundings and reflect.

That's all. :)

Sunday, October 10, 2010

sandwich delivery = yum!

Last week, or maybe 2 weeks ago, a new sandwich place literally popped up in our town. Jimmy Johns. You all know I love me some novelty so when I found out they deliver I was over the moon! jumping, dancing, yelling....just a bit overkill...but I was excited.

Today D and I ordered 2 sandwiches, chips, and a pickle and were promised that our order would be delivered "freakishly fast" insert more jumping, dancing and yelling. : )

I literally waited on my front doorstep.

Low and behold 10 minutes later there were sandwiches.

They were good. Although they did forget to add my alpha sprouts, onion, and salt/pepper, BUT it's a new store and it literally popped up out of thin air so I'll give them some grace.

D and I enjoyed them on our patio.

10 minutes later my next door neighbor walks out of her back door with a Jimmy Johns bag, she saw our sandwiches and was inspired to order some of her own. When she called they were like "Which street? St xxx? We were JUST there!"

ha ha

I think I should get a referral cookie or something.


Thursday, October 7, 2010

The Room Where Things Go To Die

If you walk down the stairs to our basement and turn right you will be startled, shocked, and in awe. Why? Because you've entered our dirty little secret. The room where stuff goes to die !? also known as the junk room.

When we moved into this house I heard D utter the words, "Oh, just take that down to the basement" du du dun I knew in that very moment that we had just created an untouchable, messy, unorganized, junk room. *groan*

Well...we've lived in this house for about 8 months and the room has remained untouched, except for the growingly frequent trips down there to stash stuff. lots. and. lots. of. S.T.U.F.F.

Who knew that D and I were such pack rats? Now I know that neither of us ever sold a textbook back in college and apparently we both plan on keeping said textbooks 4eva. Oh, also in addition to the textbooks, we also have binders and folders filled with every paper we ever received in college. ha ha. not joking.

We also have all the cards we received from our wedding, enough stickers to pay the US's debt 2x over (don't forget I'm a teacher : ), every memento from our relationship dating back to my Senior prom pictures and D's actual dried corsage, oh and lets not forget 14 Frisbees that D collected throughout college.

I decided that the stuff stops here.

Now D and I are endeavoring to get rid of the untouchable junk room. Armed with heavy duty storage shelves, plastic bins, markers, and labels. Can we do it? Yes we can!


Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Shut the Front Door!

I found this recipe online and it. is. awesome.

Your taste buds and your waistline will thank you. Yes, your waistline. This is a low calorie recipe that rocks.

Pumpkin Muffins
1 small can (15oz) of pumpkin
1 box of spice cake mix
1 cup of chocolate chips or craisins
Combine the pumpkin and spice cake and then add in your chocolate chips or craisins. Spoon the mixture into cupcake tins and bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 mins. yum!

Personally I halved the batter and made 6 large cupcakes with craisins and 6 large cupcakes with chocolate chips. oh! Also you could make these mini cupcakes and they would be darling.

These are so delicious.


Monday, October 4, 2010

Fresh Start

Don't Monday's feel like a clean slate? I love Monday mornings and the prospect of a new week. I think to myself..."Maybe this week I will go on a walk with D every day"....or ...."This is the week I am finally going to organize the basement"....or...."I am going to invite that couple over for dinner this week" Anywho I start every Monday off with great expectations.

This Monday I am cleaning and organizing and am finding joy in caring for my home. For real, it looks like 25 people (not 2) live here. I find D's empty cereal bowls in the strangest places along with my stray animal print flats and tote bags...and under piles of coats...last nights movie rentals...which are now late. ha I'm workin' on it.

It's chilly here and I am craving comfort. Warm blankets, a welcoming home, hot chocolate, far away friends (Hi K!), and cozy slippers.

I'll start this Monday with a warm drink and a vacuum cleaner. Wish me luck!


Saturday, October 2, 2010

Hello Old Friend...

It's rainy and gloomy here. Peerfect napping weather. Do you all know what a NyQuil blanket is? My mother-in-law makes them. Two pieces of warm, fuzzy fleece tied together. Even if you are not sleepy when curl up with one, the blanket puts you to sleep every.single.time... thus the name NyQuil blanket.

In honor of the month of October and napping weather I am making comfort food.

Apples with carmel dip
Baked Potatoes
.....and maybe some brownies with ice cream....depending on how late we stay up watching movies : )

D came home today and is currently sleeping off jet lag under his NyQuil blanket. I am enjoying Season 1 of The Good Wife under my NyQuil blanket. It's a good day.


Sunday, September 26, 2010

What's a girl to do!?

D left this morning to travel for business...actually he'll be chillin' (haha) with K and baby A and P in Alaska...get it...chillin' ALASKA? : )

He left this morning and I already miss him. It's lonely being a homemaker all by yourself!! Luckily I already have a sub job lined up at my favorite school this week but I'll still need to keep myself busy.

Here's the plan:

Tonight I have a class chat at 8:30pm. Wanna know the BEST thing about online classes? You can drink and participate in class! I will most definitely be chatting with a glass of Riesling tonight...makes for better conversation.

Also, tonight is tv heaven! Desperate Housewives (I'm starting to think I fall into this category. ha!), Brothers and Sisters, Madmen, AND Sister Wives.*swoon* I am super interested in TLC's new show Sister Wives. Polygamy is a weak spot for me. I find the lifestyle is so so interesting. Plus ya'll know about my deep love for Big Love. This is gonna be real life Big Love!

For the rest of the week-

I am sucked into the Hunger Games series. My little sister E, or L for short, gave me the book after she read it for school. I read it in one sitting. Then bought the second book. Now I'm on to the third and final book in the series.

I plan on watching Letter's to Juliet...don't think my darling husband would want to participate in the viewing of this movie.

I plan to bake some homemade, from scratch, yes martha, goodies. :)

I'll be going to the farmer's market.

Enjoying the newly crisp fall air but cleaning out the garage and subsequent outdoor chores.

Can you tell I don't like being home alone? I like to keep myself busy, busy, busy.

Feel free to call and add to my schedule.

Friday, September 24, 2010

To Kindle or Not to Kindle?

I love to read.

I find nothing more relaxing that snuggling up with a good book and devouring the pages. When it's a particularly good book, something very Harry Potter or even better Twilight, poor D gets a bit neglected while I read.

Anywho, reading is a ritual for me and I don't think I could ever enjoy a reading from a Kindle. There is something special about holding a well loved book, thumbing through pages, and laying it down opened to save a spot.

I don't think I would get the same satisfaction from a Kindle. Plus, wouldn't you get eye strain from staring at the screen?



Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Just a bit of FALL!!! decor....

Even though it's 90 degrees outside, it. is. still. technically. fall! So at the H/D household we're (I'm) celebrating with fall decor. : )
Our entryway/table
On the right is a pumpkin picture frame, minus a picture, guess I'll need to fix that!

Door from the kitchen to the garage.
Let me tell you, I LOVE how this turned out. I bought that "Blessings" sign last year and hung it on the door...well it's metal...and it really scrapped up the door = unhappy D. In a moment of sheer genius (thank you very much), I decided to tie it to this wreath with burlap and I loooove how it turned out.
Half bathroom sinkKitchen table centerpiece.
I have had my eye on this hurricane base and candle holder from Walmart for about 3 months. It's so versatile and I completely fixated on how much I wanted it. cost about 30 bucks...and I was not going to spend 30 bucks at Walmart for a centerpiece. So I bid my time, waiting, lusting, lurking at Walmart until it went on sale for $7!! Then I snatched that puppy up and plopped it on my kitchen table with some pumpkins, leaves, acorns, and pinecones.

K that's just a sneak peek!
This afternoon I am planting some massive mums in my front porch planters, which I'll show you all soon.
Happy Fall!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

weddings, and trips, and teeth oh my!

Over Labor Day weekend D and I had the pleasure of attending H2D2's wedding! : ) It was a beautiful ceremony and a F U N reception...complete with a photo booth!

This is the Findlay gang with the bride...don't know where the groom was!?

After the wedding D and I traveled to Traverse City to spend the rest of the weekend. Let me tell you, I loove Traverse City. The minute our car rolls into town I instantly relax and am in vacation mode.
Our first stop? Black Star Farm's winery.
Cheers! I'm on vacation!
Next we drove up the pennisula to Old Mission Lighthouse. The next morning, after a delicious breakfast of stuffed hashbrowns we drove to Sleeping Bear Dunes National Park...where we decided to hike. in. jeans. in. the. rain.

I couldn't resist a quick monogram in the sand...After the rain passed we changed into dry clothes and drove to the dune climb. Last year we basically took this exact same picture in the same place...perhaps it will/is becoming tradition.

love, love, loved Traverse City! We plan to try to visit again in October for the lafe fall foliage.

This past week flew by quickly. D and I finally got a break? on Friday when D had his wisdom teeth removed. He was such a trooper and a good patient. He surgery literally took 5 minutes. Not joking. When they called me back to the recovery area, I was alarmed and thought something had gone wrong because they called me back so quickly. Nope. D was sitting up chatting with the nurse like nothing had happened. He did make a few loopy comments about making important engineering decisions in his current state, but over all he was great. He came on and rested for the rest of the day. I am so thankful he's recovering well!

Now you are all caught up and I can start blogging about my new fabulous fall decorations! :)


Thursday, September 2, 2010

If you were born today...

Your birthday would be 9-02-10

as in 90210

just sayin... : )

D and I are about to go broke...

...because of the excessive amount of printer ink I have been using!!!

This past week I decided to complicate my life even further and begin a full course-load of Graduate level classes.

ha ha ha

I thought I'd "make my life easier" by taking online classes.

ha ha ha

While it IS easier to work from home and not attend traditional classes, the amount of printing, downloading, chatting, e-mailing, etc. is excruciating. I'm going to need a blackberry (hint hint, dear husband) and several ink cartridges just to keep up!

On the bright side...I started reading one of my textbooks know for an assignment due tomorrow...and am finding that I so love the topic. My BA is in Early Childhood Education and this M.ED will not only certify me (early!!) to be an Early Childhood Intervention Specialist but will meet the state of Ohio's requirement for a Masters and hopefully open some job opportunities in a field I love.

Me and little little kids? We work well together. Don't ask me how or why I have the patience for them, but I do. Me and little kids with special needs? We work even better together. Again, I can't explain it. : )

In the mean time, I am off to finish my homework and buy some ink cartridges.


Saturday, August 28, 2010

D in DC

D and his cousin G are in Washington, DC at Glenn Beck's Restoring Honor rally.

I am super proud.

Watch live NOW on Facebook

God Bless America.


Thursday, August 26, 2010

This will be framed in my home...

"Be kinder than necessary, for everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle."

How true.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

sick and twisted

What I am about to write is wrong it's just wrong.

Tasks that give me instant gratification:

1. Paying bills- What!? I know, I know... for me, it's like a ritualistic to-do list. I get the list of bills that need to be paid, grab my darling D/H return address labels (these just make me smile), the checkbook, my Vera Bradley pen, and stamps. Do I enjoy overpaying for basic services? Nope, but I feel a huge sense of accomplishment when the pile is gone and the mailbox is filled with neatly stacked envelopes. Like I said...sick and twisted.

2. Emptying the dishwasher- It takes 15 (tops) and then it's done-zo.

3. Taking the change jar to the bank- LOVE THIS!! My useless jar of castaway change becomes real money in the bank...(shorty what you think? ha ha ha)

4. Crafting on the cheap- I get so much joy out of turning something plain and cheap into something beautiful and expensive looking. My entire house is full of bargain projects that look expensive. I know it's prideful, but my heart swells when friends/family ask where I got something or assume it's name brand and expensive. going out/coming in and cleaning give me instant gratification...what does that say about me? : )

Monday, August 23, 2010

weekend recap

D and I had a long, fun-filled, and yet emotional weekend.

Friday evening we recieved news that D's brother...D3's best friend died in a swimming accident. Our hearts sunk. D3's best friend was truly considered a member of the family. He was welcomed and present for all holidays and celebrations. In fact, when we first watched the video of the our wedding recepetion we had to laugh because he is dancing all over the place! Our hearts go out to his family, my brother-in-law/family and his numerous friends. I pray that we can all find peace in this tragic situation.

After absorbing the sad news D and I attempted to lift our spirits by going to KF's house for a cookout. We enjoyed good food and company...and mosquitos!! My feet are once again polka dotted with bug bites.

Saturday morning brought, an always exciting, trip to the local landfill. D and I finally made some progress towards cleaning out our garage and getting rid of smelly garbage. : ) We spent the rest of the rainy day tidying up the house and preparing for company. Saturday night we had a BLAST with our friends.

Sunday we slept in. ahh! It was fabulous! After lunch we ventured out to find a new computer. Last week D spilled beer on the old computer and it wouldn't turn back on. We figured that we were about due for a new laptop as technology was changing and the old laptop was slowing down and not retaining a battery least that's what we told ourselves! We drove an hour to Perrysburg/Toledo where we shopped around and finally bought a new laptop, external hard drive, AN INSURANCE POLICY for the laptop, and software security.

After spending all the money we needed the Lord! ha ha

We found a parish in Toledo and attended Mass. Then went looking for dinner. I suggested that we try an Indian restuarant. Poor D, he always trys to appease me...we drove around for an hour before finding the resturant-which was delicious! Thankfully we have plenty of leftovers for lunch today. : )


Thursday, August 19, 2010


Yesterday Santa Claus came to my house via UPS!!

After many years (2 to be exact) of lamenting over my lack of a KitchenAid Mixer I finally broke down and bought one. : ) A sunny "majestic yellow" one. And it makes me so so happy!


Wednesday, August 18, 2010


I stumbled upon this blog today and I HAVE to share it with all of you!

This women has committed to wearing a new outfit everyday for a year (365 days) on a budget of $365. She is shopping at thrift stores and flea markets for cheap finds, which she then takes home and alters to make the piece more modern/fit.

Super fun and creative.


p.s. Mom this makes me think of you! ; )

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

I am wire-LESS

It's been 10 days since the, now infamous, phone in the toilet situation and I have yet to replace my cell phone.

Truth be told it's nice.

I feel like I'm "off duty" without the constant ring, vibrate, or alarm of my cell phone.

Those that need to urgently speak with me, find a way. I am finding that my conversations are more meaningful and relevant because I'm not just BSing or ranting/raving (like I do when I always have a cell phone available and in my hand).

In the coming days I'm planning to replace the cell phone...D likes to be able to get ahold of me AND I get lost easily. However, from now on I will be more cautious with the amount of time I spend on the phone, in addition to the amount of full time availability I grant to others via the cell phone.

the end.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Today is August 16th and I am so so ready for fall!

I hate to rush summer along..the fresh produce is nice..but this heat?! it's killing me.

I am done-zo.

I'm just not a big fan of summer to begin with. Who wants to show off their chubby arms and legs? NOT this girl! ha ha! I hate sweating, my AC has been out 3 times, and we have been so busy! D and I have literally been running around doing something, traveling somewhere since May. Seriously, on the rare Saturday mornings that I wake up in my own bed, I panic because I don't know where I am.

.....but fall? It's my season. pumpkins, crisp cool evenings, apples, carmel, carmel & apples, D and my annual pumpkin carving party (FYI it's Oct. 23 @ 4pm. and I've already ordered the most darling invitations!!!), chili, wreaths, sweaters, friends huttled around firepits, harvest themed decorations, trick or treaters, warm cider, I could go on and on.... I love fall.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

kids who eat rocks and other fun adventures in preschool

Overheard in my classroom today:

3 yo. old: I have a new baby brother

Miss Halley: oh! How exciting!!! How do you like being a big brother?

3 yo. old: (With a shrug) It's good...but you have to be really careful because he has a cut off wee wee

Miss Halley: ......... well I hope he feels better soon ..........

Tuesday, August 10, 2010


Wanna know what I did yesterday??

Celebrated my 2nd anniversary with my dear husband. : )

Now let me brag on him for a minute. I came home yesterday to find our wedding champagne flutes setting out on the table...filled with champagne (love him!!), the wedding album on the coffee table, and roses.

Honestly the champagne won me over. He could have stopped there, but NOOO, we went to dinner at The Revolver. *swoon*

Halley loves.

We had a wonderful dinner filled with too much wine, good conversation, and amazing food.

In the past two years we've conquered salmonella, bought a house, lost a gallbladder, said goodbye to D's first car, and we're still kicking.

Going into year 3 I'm looking forward to overcoming new curve balls together, travelling (to Alaska! ha!), and settling into our home.

Happy Anniversary D! I adore you.

Monday, August 9, 2010

In the past 48 hours...

My best friend moved to Alaska. K told me 6 weeks ago that she, P, and baby A were moving to Alaska. My heart broke. I see K and baby A just about every day. We go to lunch, shop at Costco, walk, run errands, or just visit together. I call K with my many daily antics and she listens! ha! She listens to my rants/raves...and still loves me. I'm sad to see her go. devastated. Fortunately with Skype, blogs, and cell phones we will be able to keep in touch. I won't miss any of Baby A's milestones and K still has the pleasure (ha ha!) of talking me down when I rant/rave. Love you!

I dropped my cell phone in the toilet. Speaking of keeping in touch..I'm now without a phone!! and phone numbers!!! I'm not even sure how the phone fell into the toilet, but it did.

My car has a flat tire.

and we got our high summer electric bill. To the tune of $271. boo.

Understanding all of this, I hope you'll forgive my lack of blogging lately.

But I'm back and I have plenty of time on my hands!


p.s. Please e-mail me your cell phone numbers at I feel lost without being able to contact my friend!

Friday, July 23, 2010

weekends at home

We have had a rip roaring summer full of weddings, babies, family, church festivals, and friends.

It's been so exciting that we have only had about 4 weekends at home over the past 4 months....and there are piles of laundry, dust bunnies, and weeds in our flower beds to prove it!

This weekend we are home. : )

The big plans?

Friday: Skyline chili for dinner (yum!) and finishing a bottle of wine while watching Mad Men season 3

Saturday: Weeding/housework, grilling out, and maybe a game night

Sunday: Church and chilling out

LOVE IT! We are basically doing nothing!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

you get what you get...

...and you don't throw a fit!

ha! That's a little ditty that I say to my preschoolers daily. ; ) It also applies to my lack of blogging!

This past weekend D and I packed up the kitchen sink, I mean, car! and headed to Lake Hope State Park for the D family reunion. As usual it was great to see everyone and the beer was flowin'. There were quite a few activities planned for the weekend: hiking, card playing, eating, canoing. cornhole playing, drinking, chatting, and ziplining.

I agreed to zipline about 6 months ago. Oh! How fun! YES! I'd looove to go. Do you all know what ziplining entails?? HANGING FROM A 1/2 INCH ROPE 80 FEET ABOVE SHARP POINTY ROCKS AND ANIMALS! Needless to say, as the date approached I became more apprehensive.

Every time I thought about ziplining my heart would race and my stomach would sink. I was terrified.

Here's the thing. D's family is competitive. These people will sit around for hours comparing toes to see who has the longest, they will get out a scale and compare weights, they have even been known to compete to see who has the lowest or highest blood pressure. hard core, I know. D and his cousins could entertain themselves for hours anything....and they won't let you live it down....e v e r.

Knowing them and their competitive ways I knew I couldn't back out. I tried. All morning on Friday I cried and gnashed my teeth. I moped around. I couldn't eat or drink. I declared that I was backing out. In no uncertain way was I going to jump off a platform attached to a 1/2 inch rope.

D was supportive...or terrified. He had never seen me so distraught.

At the last minute I caved and agreed to zipline. Being the frugal person that I am I could not possibly let the $75 I prepaid go to waste.

On the way there I sweated through my clothes.

When it was our turn to zip I got picked to go first. fabulous. Thanks hippie zipline instructors!

D laughed. alot.

I screamed. alot.

Ziplining was not nearly as terrifying as I imagined. You are indeed hooked to a 1/2 inch rope 80 feet above sharp pointy rocks and animals but it's a smooth, moderately paced, surreal ride through the trees.

I actually enjoyed myself while screaming through the air and conquering my fear. Everyone else enjoyed my hysterical show. ha ha!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

wow it's july!!

Welcome to July. This month makes me think of summer picnics, fireworks!, friends, family, and the troops.

In honor of July 4th, D and I are sending care packages to our servicemen and women in Iraq and Afghanistan.

I am incredibly proud and honored to know/love several Marines who have served our great nation while at war. D's cousin J is going back for his 3rd tour of's the kicker...his contract with the Marines is up and he has chosen to continue his service by volunteering for another tour in Afghanistan. I am proud and grateful of he and his family's sacrifice.

D and I chose to donate through You can also send care packages from here. Today Old Navy kicked off a campaign where you can donated an item from the store to the troops and receive 10% off your purchase.

There are plenty of options for giving.

While you are enjoying your hotdogs, beer, and fireworks please take a moment to remember our troops who are fighting for your freedom. Please consider making a donation, sending a card or care package to let them know that they are appreciated and thought of at home.

The men and women who serve our country are HEROS. This 4th of July I will be praying for their continued safety and success.


Friday, June 25, 2010

all work....with a little play

Friday: It's jeans day at work! : ) D and I are relaxing at home. Artichoke Pasta for dinner! yum! popsicles and a game or two of Uno and/or Dominoes

Saturday: It's gonna be an early morning! We need to take some things to the dump and do some yard work. In the evening we are going to our city's wine festival.

Sunday: Church and home.

This is the first weekend we have been home and had to ourselves in over a month. I am going to soak up every last bit of it.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

d went golfing after work

he calls me for the first time at 9:44pm

"h, did you eat dinner?"

"yes d......i'm guessing that food and beer are in your near future?"

"h! i've had enough beer"

"BS! BS! BS! hahaha"

isn't he funny? i've had enough beer

i'm still laughing.....


My air conditioning is out AGAIN.

It's too hot to breath.

I will be pursuing venues that have free AC. This includes : the movie theater, Walmart, my neighbors, and work. ha!

pray for my AC.


Wednesday, June 23, 2010

I'm a winner!!!

This past Friday D and I headed over to our parish festival for a fun night of socializing, drinking, volunteering, and gambling....with our priests! : )

The church was packed and D and I quickly set out to have a good time. 1 hamburger, 1 hotdog, a beer, diet coke, and an order of fries later and we were set. The mediocre band was playing and we were having a good time.

For me a festival experience is not even close to fun without instant BINGO. I seriously live for these things. How great is it to buy one, hurry to pull off all the tabs, and have the instant gratification of winning (or losing). So I mosied over to the instant BINGO bucket and bought $10 worth of games....knowing that I would be back for more later in the evening....and wanting to pace myself....

I started pulling the tabs, nothing, nope no winner, nada. This really isn't uncommon or surprising. That's why I keep going back for more.

On my second to last game I start noticing these tiny red lines through the pictures. This has got to be a big deal. I just know it!! I start telling D and anyone who would listen that I was a winner. I look to my right and there is Fr. M laughing. I tell him I've won and he promptly tells me that if I have won he obviously had a part in blessing the game and deserves a cut (Don't worry Fr. your cut was in the envelope on Sunday! I promise).
So I start yelling and jumping. I won! I won!

Don't mind the general sweaty-ness of the picture it was H.O.T. and I was flushed from winning! ha!

D is not looking nearly as excited as fact...he doesn't believe me and asks to see my ticket. After checking it out he hands it back shaking his head. uh...D dearest ARE YOU BLIND?? That's a winner.

I was through with these na sayers and decided to collect my winnings.

I marched up to the guy selling the games and told him that I won. In one quick glance he confirmed!!! : ) my winnings and starting counting up money.

How much money? $103!!! ha!
I was in instant BINGO nirvana.

Luckily H2 was there to capture the events on film. Thanks H2!

In that moment I immediately began making plans for how to spend my winnings. A stand mixer that I had been saving for, a new Vera Bradley, oh! how about a Pandora bead, or some cute overpriced flip flops from Lands End.

In the end my prize money went to pay for bridal shower /father's day gifts and a trip to Panera with K....BUT it was fun while it lasted!

The moral of this story? Always spend lots of D's money at parish festivals and sit next to your priest while opening Instant BINGO...someday it will pay off!