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Friday, September 28, 2012

7 Quick Takes Friday


--- 1 ---
It's budget crunch time, and work has been a little hectic lately (mainly because of my propensity to procrastinate).  I have three of my own budgets to prepare, in addition to helping some others with their budgets.  As of Thursday, the budgets are DONE!  Do you hear me??  THEY.ARE.DONE!  Woo hoo! Happy Dance!
--- 2 ---
If you've been around me at all the last few weeks, read my facebook or twitter posts, etc., then you know I've been stricken with the plague.  Well... the doctor assured me it's not actually the plague, and I will live - there for a while, I had my doubts.  I got the "double barrel" shot treatment as he called it, meaning I got a shot of both antibiotic and steroids.  He seemed a little surprised that I actually requested the antibiotic shot rather than an oral med, but I'm sick and tired of being sick and tired.  Let's get this show on the road to wellness! 
--- 3 ---
The diagnosis?  A sinus infection.  I suffer from terrible seasonal allergies.  (Could it possibly have anything to do with the fact that I'm allergic to oak trees, and I live in a state completely covered with them??)  I was allergy tested back in the early 90s and had the shot therapy for a few years.  The doctor said he would like to have me retested.  He also stated that the clinic now has a new program for those with allergies, where they will teach us to give ourselves the allergy shots at home.  In the "olden days" when I was taking the shot therapy, I'd have to pay a co-pay each time I went for a shot.  In addition to the exorbitant cost, the doctor mentioned that they have issues with folks coming on a consistent basis for their shots, which really negates the treatment.  So, they've developed this at-home program.

I do have a concern about possibly having a reaction at home.  I had a reaction to an allergy shot once at the doctor's office, and if I remember correctly, it was not an increased dose, but that was 20+ years ago, so who knows for sure.  The doctor assured me that with the at-home program, you're started off with a lesser dose than you would have at the clinic.  Each time your dosage is increased, that shot would be given at the clinic in case of a reaction.  While I was typing this post, I received a call from the clinic and was able to ask a few more questions.  I was told that I would be taught how to recognize a reaction, what to do in the event of a reaction and I would also be given a prescription for an epi-pen to have on-hand just in case. 

If that's the case, I'm certainly interested, but will check into it further before I decide either way.  Have any of you ever participated in an at-home allergy therapy treatment?  If so, I'd love to hear about your experience.
--- 4 ---
This past weekend, my youngest son's baseball team, the AR Easton Elite, played in a Fall State Warm Up tournament.  As I've mentioned numerous times in the past, our 9AAA team is not allowed to play in our own age and division, because the other 9 year old teams don't want to play us.  Therefore, we have to play up in the 10 AA division.  This past weekend, we came in 2nd to a team called the Blaze who is ranked 10AA.  Now, rumor has it the Blaze has at least 5 or more major players on their team.  Since you don't have to post a team roster in the fall, and they're a new team, they've been allowed to remain in the 10AA division.  They are NOT a AA or even a AAA team, they are MAJOR team and should be ranked as such. 

The boys are being goofy.
This coming weekend, the Elite are headed to Southhaven, MS, to play in the Fall National tournament.  We are finally going to be able to play other 9AAA teams.  Thank goodness!  Wednesday, we had a practice game against a local team that was just bumped up to 9AAA, and honestly, we did not hit well.  Our boys are used to hitting against older boys, so when they face a slower pitcher, they struggle.  We still beat this team 9-1.  Will a season of playing up help us or hurt us at the Fall Nationals?  Time will tell.

In the meantime, keep all of these boys and their families in your prayers as they travel to and from their destination and play their little hearts out on the field.  I also pray that we, as adults, remember we are setting examples for our children and we must be mindful of our words and behaviour.  Our children are little sponges.  They are watching and listening, and they are soaking it all in.  Trust me, this is something I struggle with on a daily basis.  I'm not known to hold my tongue, and often I have no filters at all.  Not to mention, fighting this plague has made me quite irritable as well...  So, a prayer or two for me would be appreciated as well, please and thanks!
--- 5 ---
Thursday was my Friday, and it was a cuh-ray-zee day.  Trying to get lose ends tied up at work before I left, trying to make sure the house is picked up (and let's face it that's a never-ending battle), the laundry is done, shopping has been done for the trip, everyone is packed, etc.  See?  Cuh-ray-zee! 

As hectic as these trips are, we really enjoy spending time with our Elite family.  I always talk about what a fabulous group of boys they are, but the parents are just as awesome!  The apples don't fall far from the trees, right?  We have a few spats here and there, but what family doesn't?  We say our piece, we forgive, we move on.  Family.  Most of the boys consider themselves brothers, they love the younger siblings and the older siblings... well, they often have to photo bomb to be in the pictures.  LOL!  We celebrate victories and more.
--- 6 ---
I have to finish some last minute stuff before we head out the door.  Oh, and anyone thinking about breaking in while we're gone.  Fuhgetaboutit!  Our home is being watched by several brothers and brothers in law, who really love their fire arms and have been looking for some extra target practice.  I'm not joking.
--- 7 ---
TGIF, ya'll!!  Go Elite!  Go 77!  Let's roll.

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

What the Heck Wednesday

Sorry this feature has been missing the last couple of weeks.  Things have been hectic, and I've been fighting the plague.  Actually, I'm still fighting the plague, and I went to bed at 6:30 last night which is unheard of.  Other than receiving a few texts here and there, I slept the entire night.   With Fall Nationals coming up, it's time to bite the bullet and head to the doctor.  I'm praying he'll give me the magic shot combo - antibiotic and steroids. 

Since my head feels like there's a drum line marching around up there, let's get to business.

This leather wrap skirt is now 40% off.  Seems like it's always been 40% off - where's the rest of it?  Notice this is the rear view?

Chic and feminine crocheted tank top.  Okay, ladies, correct me if I'm wrong, but nothing about this top says Chic.  As far as I'm concerned this top is just a step above pasties.  Now flowers are typically a feminine touch, but when you add them to a stripper top..... tacky and trashy.
This little gem of a skirt is called a 1/2 skirt or a bumlero.  You're basically tying a bustle to your backside.  It looks more like an apron tied on the wrong way.  This might be cute in a dance class but not for normal street wear.

Wow!  Just...... wow.

Scared of a tattoo needle?  Worry no more!  You can now get your tramp stamp on your jeans instead of your backside.

We've discussed the animal themed shoes ad naseum.  Just don't.
Does anyone else envision those male hula dancers when you see those pants?

What do you think?

Okay, folks that's really all I have in me today.  I'm fading fast.  Hopefully the doc will fix me up and get me on the road to good health quickly.

If you happen across any atrocious fashion that you would like to see featured here, send me a picture.  Thanks for stopping by.

Happy hump day, ya'll!

Friday, September 21, 2012

7 Quick Takes Friday


--- 1 ---
Tuesday was Ben and my 13th wedding anniversary.  I can't believe we've been married for 13 years.  Wow!  I've been so busy lately and haven't felt well because of this crud I'm fighting, I completely forgot it was our anniversary until I got up Tuesday morning and found a card from him leaning against the coffee pot.  I felt horrible.  Of course, I boo-hooed.

Later that night he informed me that the previous night I didn't let anyone sleep.  Apparently, my snoring kept everyone awake.  Ahh... the romance.
--- 2 ---
Tuesday was a memorable day for another reason.  My youngest wears a retainer due to an accident he had last year.  Anyway, he called me at 3:15 Tuesday afternoon and said "Momma, I just realized I threw my retainer in the trash at lunch."  Uh, oh..... his brand new retainer he's had a little more than a month.  He and I donned our nastiest clothes ever, rubber boots and rubber gloves and headed to the school in search of the retainer.  Luckily, the school had agreed not to throw all of the cafeteria trash in the dumpster, so at least we didn't have to do an actual dumpster dive.  After searching through 5 bags full of Frito chili pie and sweet corn, we found the retainer.  Needless to say, neither one of us was interested in having the taco salad I had planned for dinner that night.  UGH!
--- 3 ---
I'm so glad the new kitchen curtains are done.  Yes, BOTH of the windows have now been finished.  Yay!

Now on to the hall bathroom.  I was so pleased with the way the cafe curtains turned out in the kitchen, I'm going to do a set for the bathroom as well.  Our hall bath is so small and dark, we need more light, and I think cafe curtains will fill the bill nicely.  Ben doesn't think we need a valance in the bathroom, so I'm willing to try his way first.  We'll see.  Here's a sneak peak at the fabric.

We need to finish painting some shelving, touch up the trim and the paint the ceiling, and we'll finally be done with the bathroom.  In the future, I must remember that Ben is not allowed to cut in around the ceiling unless the ceilings are taped first.  Thankyouverymuch!
--- 4 ---
Sorry, I didn't get a WTHW post up again this week.  It's been a crazy week.  Hopefully next week we should be back on schedule.  I stress the word SHOULD.
--- 5 ---
The Elite are scheduled to play baseball this weekend.  Let's pray rain doesn't interfere again.  We really need to get some real play time in before heading to Fall Nationals.  At least at Fall Nationals, we'll be able to play in our own age group instead of having to play the 10-year-old teams.
--- 6 ---
TGIF!!  Am I right??  Have a great weekend everyone!  I hope all my Arkansas peeps are able to get out and enjoy this beautiful weather we're having lately.
--- 7 ---
For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Friday, September 14, 2012

7 Quick Takes Friday


--- 1 ---
It's been a long week for me, and next week will be more of the same.  It's budget time, and I have three budgets to prepare.  Procrastination is not my friend.  Need I say more?
--- 2 ---
Before                                 After
I'm excited the kitchen window treatments are finished.  I'm pleased with how they turned out, and I think I'll do cafe curtains in the hall bathroom as well.  We really need light in the bathroom, and I think the cafe curtains will help.  Hopefully, we'll get that project finished soon.
--- 3 ---
 
A few weeks ago, I saw this video on Dwija's blog, House Unseen and I had to share.   I agree with her that it's a rip off of the Swagger Wagon video, but entertaining nonetheless.
--- 4 ---
I took the boys to have their teeth cleaned this week, and their dentist has lost 56 pounds on the Ideal Protein program. He looks amazing. That's about how much I need to lose as well, and I'm considering this program. I have never heard of it, but from what little I've read, there are some prepackaged foods, but you can also prepare your own food. There's lots of veggies and fruit.  Here's where I may get tripped up. Unfortunately, I'm not much of a veggie person. I was wondering if any of you had tried the program?  Was the program easy?  What were your results?  Do tell, please. I'm really tired of not being able to recognize the person in the mirror. Time for a change is long overdue.  Of course, I want the quick fix with no sacrifice or exercise.  Sad, I know.
--- 5 ---
I'm pressed for time and material, so I'll stop here before I start talking about the weather again. 
--- 6 ---
Have a great weekend, everyone!
--- 7 ---


For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Kitchen Window Treatment Re-Do

I know you've been waiting with bated breath on the kitchen window treatment reveal.  So, as a reminder, here's the before again.

Hideous, right?

Okay, here's the new and improved.  I know you can see that I used two tension rods to install the valance.  After I took this photo, I adjusted the fabric so that you can no longer see the ends of the tensions rods.  However, I didn't get a chance to take another quick picture because, well... we had to get out the door and off to school and work.  I was going to have hubby make an actual wooden valance that I would upholster, but yeah... I didn't want to wait on him.  I do think the valance needs to look a tad more crisp.  So who knows, if I decide to change it, I may end up making the wooden valances myself.

I mentioned that these were no-sew window treatments, and I honestly did not sew a thing.  I did use my handy dandy little sewing kit though.  Isn't it awesome?  Don't be haters.  Okay, stop laughing!  I told you that I don't sew.

After I relieved the Diva Dog of her guard duties, here's what I did:
I measured and cut my fabric considering my seam allowance.  Once I cleaned off the little card table, it was much easier on my back to cut the fabric on the card table.  I also discovered that the pair of the scissors in the sewing kit, regardless of how small they are, still cut fabric much better than my old kitchen shears.  Oh, here's a good tip for you:  Make sure there's not any WET dark brown paint on the card table from hubby touching up some bath cabinet trim.  UGH!  Yes, I was able to get the paint out of the fabric panel, thank goodness!

Instead of sewing these panels, I used stitch witchery, which meant ironing.  I did get a burn or two, but these panels look so much better than they would have had I attempted to sew them. 

With the cafe curtain panels, I didn't need a rod pocket, so they are just nice little rectangles hung on cafe curtain rings.  However, with the valance, I used two tension rods, so I did need two rod pockets.  Therefore, I increased the size of the seam allowance, and positioned the stitch witchery where I had enough space for the rod to slip through once the hem was ironed down. 

While I was poking myself with straight pins, burning myself with an iron and climbing on the kitchen cabinets, this is what Ben and the diva dog, Bitsy, were up to.  This picture cracks me up.  She's sitting in his lap watching whatever is on the computer screen.  Every once in a while, she would move the mouse and aggravate Ben.  Too funny!

Well, here's a side-by-side comparison.  This project was super easy and inexpensive.  I was able to find the fabric 50% off at Hancock Fabric just prior to the Labor Day Holiday.  I think the most expensive fabric was the stripe, and it was on sale for $3 per yard.  They only had 3 yards of the stripe left, so even though I didn't think I would need that much, I bought it all in case I screwed up.  I consider this project a success.  In fact, I now think I'll do something similar in the hall bathroom we are currently re-doing.  Hopefully I'll be able to have a reveal on that someday soon.

So, what do you think?

Have a great day everyone!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

What the Heck Wednesday

Sorry, there's no WTHW post today.  A summer cold or sinus crud (whatever it is that has struck me)combined with projects, have taken their toll.  I'm so out of it.  In fact, I just discovered that what I grabbed out of the cabinet this morning thinking it was my blood pressure medicine, was not.  I'm not sure if I took my husband's BP meds or my son's ADD/ADHD meds.  The only thing certain is that it was not my BP meds, because that new bottle was just discovered still tucked safely away in my purse.  UGH!

On a brighter note, I finished the re-do on my no-sew kitchen window treatments last night.  I would have taken a picture of the finished product, but I just didn't have the energy to do the last of the dishes before I collapsed in a sniffling, coughing, snoring (that's yet to be proven) heap.  Don't judge me.  I know you're so excited, so here's a teaser....

BEFORE

Sad, I know... (Looks like I need to clean the water splashes off the window too.  Sigh.)  Remember, it was just the window treatments that I redid at this time.  We'll soon be replacing the butt-ugly lighting with pendant lighting (I hope).  More than likely the builder's grade oak cabinetry will get a make over as well.  Of course, painting the cabinetry is a major undertaking, and I've sworn that there will be no other major projects started until some of the others are finished.  Right now, the projects that are taking place are ones that I can do by myself or with very minimal involvement from others (read:  the significant other).  LOL!

We bought an older home (circa 1950s), and are upgrading and adding on as we can.  Unfortunately, much of what the previous owner(s) did do was not executed very well and was done with mid- to low-grade materials.  So, we have some challenges.

Stay tuned.  Pictures of the completed window treatment re-do will come soon.

So, for now.... Happy hump day, ya'll!

Friday, September 7, 2012

7 Quick Takes Friday


--- 1 ---
As I mentioned Wednesday, I had both hands in braces earlier in the week due to carpal tunnel issues.  Thursday was the 1st day I've gone without wearing any brace at all.  It was also the first day I've worn a regular shoe, and not my surgical boot, to work (remember the broken toe?).  Yay!  Gosh I sound pathetic, don't I?
--- 2 ---
There are a few things I've been working on lately. 


--- 3 ---

The Air Show at the Little Rock Air Force Base is this weekend.  Although we don't live in Jacksonville, where the base is located, we are relatively close to the flight pattern.  The Blue Angels have been in town, and have been practicing in the mornings.  Early.

If you've never been to the Air Show, you need to go.  Gates open at 8:30, and admission is free.  Lanes into the base will be backed up so plan ahead, and get there early to avoid long waits.  I must admit, even though I live close, I haven't been since the late 80s.  The main thing I remember about my last Air Show was being on the tarmack with my friends, many of whom were members of the military, with our arms around each other, tears streaming, singing along to Lee Greenwood's live performance of God Bless the USA.  Moving stuff, I tell ya! 

--- 4 ---
My son's team is playing baseball again this weekend.  It's sad, but all of the teams our age run from us.  They tell the various Tournament Directors, if the Elite plays in the tournaments, they won't.  So, we're forced to play in the 10 year old division.  Don't get me wrong, we can hang with the 10 year old teams.  The 10 year olds beat us in our last tournament, but they had to put in their ace pitchers to do it.  Yes, the Elite are a good team, but we're not invincible.  We can be beaten.  So, I'd like to ask these other teams:  Why do you assume you won't beat us?  Why do you run?  Why won't you even try?  How are you ever going to improve if you don't challenge yourselves?  What are you teaching your boys when you run from a challenge?  Sure, we all like to win, we like the nice shiny trophies on the shelf.  However, if we don't challenge ourselves, we won't improve and then those wins and trophies will soon be fewer and farther between.  Remember, the difference between you and us is how hard we work for what we want.  Comfort breeds complacency and mediocracy.
As one of our Elite moms said, "we'll be pulling on our big boy pants again this weekend."  Maybe you should try a pair on for a change.   Just sayin'.
--- 5 ---
This week the temps have been back in the upper 90s and low 100s.  Although I'm not ready to see summer go, I'm looking forward to some cooler temps - no colder than lows of 60s though.  At least this weekend it's supposed to drop back down to highs of 80s.  So, it won't be so hot for the boys when they're playing baseball.  Yay!
--- 6 ---
Weather?  Really??  Can you tell I'm running out of material?  I'll stop now.
--- 7 ---
Have a great weekend!


For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

What the Heck Wednesday

I almost didn't do this WTHW post today. 

I have both hands in braces due to carpal tunnel.  Typing?  Well... it ain't easy.  However, it's probably one of the easier things I can do in these darned braces.  I've had carpal tunnel for several years now, but rarely have issues.  I suppose the past few weeks of painting, sanding, etc., in my bathroom redo can be blamed for my current predicament.

Let's get started, shall we?

I discovered I have something similar to this in my closet.  Apparently there is a well-fed, giant, mutant moth that loved my brown wool cardigan.  Sadly, it's trash now, not fashion.

Why would you do this to a pair of jeans?  I typically like much of the stuff with a Victorian vibe to it, but this just doesn't make sense.  I'd catch one of those flowers or ribbons on something and rip a huge hole in the jeans.

This is called a cloud dress.  I supposed it's named cloud because it's supposed to be soft and flowy.  But I think it's called cloud, because it makes one look as big as a cloud.  NOT. FLATTERING.

Shadows of the sea upcycled sweater.  This should be buried at sea.

We've covered harem pants multiple times, but these kinda baffle me.  Why must the pleating start right at the top of the thigh?  They make her look like she's wearing chaps.

When I was decorating the nursey in anticipation of my youngest son's birth, I copied pages out of the book, The Very Hungry Catepillar by Eric Carle, framed them and hung them on the walls.  Cute for a baby's room, not so cute on a grown woman's skirt.

Look at all of the flowers on the bodice of this dress!  This must have been made for someone really lacking in that particular area.  If I were to wear this dress, I'd look like some freak who went waaaaaay overboard with the breast implants.

I don't get the whole mustache craze in fashion these days.  I've heard two different explanations for the fad, and I just don't get it.  Did it start as a PETA thing?  Is it the whole ironic hipster thing?  Regardless, I think it's silly.

Want to be known as the crazy cat lady?  Wear this vest and you will be.  Cats on one side, balls of yard on the other.  Yup - crazy cat lady.

This thing is convertible into a vest, a bolero, shrug or tunic.  Can it be converted into something cute??

Although it's still 100 degrees here, Fall is just around the corner, and who doesn't love a beautiful scarf?  This thing looks like dreads.  In fact, it's called gray dreadlocks.  $141 for some gray dreads around your neck, I think not.

Talk about some serious blisters!

Ok, don't laugh, but I actually like this t-shirt.  Those of you that know me personally, probably noticed that I watch just about anything on TV having to do with the bigfoot phenomena.  If I weren't such a gigantic chicken, I might even go on a bigfoot hunt, but uh, uh.  I'll leave that to those dumber, ehh braver than me.

As a child, I used to dream that bigfoot lived over the hill across from my house.  Of course, that was back in the day when the movie, The Legend of Boggy Creek, came out.  (This movie is based on accounts from Fouke, Arkansas, which is around the Arkansas, Louisiana and Texas borders - several hundred miles from my home.)  So, it's always fascinated me to some degree.

I think I may have missed my calling, I should have been a Cryptozoologist!  LOL!

Well, that's it for today.

Happy hump day, ya'll.