Category Archives: Holidays

New Year, New Goals

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So, it’s time for a new year and time for new goals. Last year’s goals were not too bad, really. I did a few of them, which is better than none I think. Here’s the recap:

  1. Rebuild my wardrobe. – This is still in progress by the end of 2011 and I’ve made significant progress. I got rid of a TON of clothing (donated/freecycled) and I have been steadily building a really wearable wardrobe that I love.
  2. Get my craft mojo back! – I hardly did any knitting or crocheting, but I did get my craft mojo seriously going with decorating projects and sewing.
  3. Cull excess crap from my surroundings and life. – I got rid of all the excess knitting/crocheting supplies that I was NEVER going to use and no longer loved. Yay! I also moved my sewing space from the bedroom into the great room and reorg’ed it a bit. It still needs more organization work, though.
  4. Land my first RN job! – I got my RN license and got my first job! Yay! I start Jan. 2012!
  5. Get our finances in better order. – This finally started happening around the end of the year. I got into bulk cooking which has saved us a LOT of money, and we’ve been doing less frivolous spending.
  6. Prepare to buy our first house. – Didn’t happen.
  7. Devote more energy into my relationship with Bill. – Made some small improvements, but there’s still a TON of room left to be better.
  8. Devote more energy into my relationships with Evie and Abbie. – I think I made pretty good strides with this, but there’s always room for improvement.
  9. Try out for another play! – I’ve decided to not try out for acting gigs for now. I got involved in costuming and really love it.
  10. Prepare for my first competitive run. – Yeah, um, didn’t happen. My large rear end was way too comfy to sit on this year.
  11. Go out and sing karaoke! – Didn’t happen.

I’m actually pretty proud of how much I did do as far as my goals this past year. Yay me! Now, this year I want to accomplish the following… or at least make progress towards these things:

  1. Sew more clothes for myself and the kids. I really want more dresses. I also want to make myself a pair of pants that fit me well. I’m currently in process of preparing my dream winter coat for sewing, so that will be first on the list to get done.
  2. Boost my little side business, sewing custom clothing and alterations. I have 5 potential dresses to make this coming year. I need to confirm them asap and make sure I have satisfied customers so they can recommend me to others.
  3. Complete the BSN portion of my RN to MSN Education degree. I’m starting Jan. 2, 2012 with Western Governor’s University. I really think this is totally doable. I’d like to get my MSN within 2 years, tops.
  4. Save money for our first house. We are tightening our belts a bit so we can start saving for a down payment. Now is really the time for us to buy so we just need to get our money in order for it.
  5. Improve my relationship with Bill and the kids. I adore my family and need to make sure they are aware of that daily.
  6. Finish one knitted item. I have a sweater for myself and one for my mother in the works. I need to FINISH something. Even if I don’t love doing it anymore I want to make sure I finish what I promised to do.
  7. Walk the neighborhood at least 3-4 days a week. My large rear end is SUPER comfy, but.. it’s a big BUTT, and I want to get it just a little smaller. So I need to start moving, regularly. Not in the hyper spurts that I tend to do. I have severe motivation issues and lose steam with most exercise, but I really enjoy walking my neighborhood. It’s scenic and peaceful, so I need to use that to my advantage and do something.
  8. Organize my sewing area and bedroom. They both need SERIOUS help. This is a big challenge for me as I’m kind of chaos incarnate and don’t really have an organized bone in my body. lol But I gotta try.

I think that’s it. Fewer things than last year, but things that are far more important to me at this point.

I hope you all have a happy, prosperous and safe New Year!

It’s beginning to look a lot like…

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…the Christmas Spirit threw up all over my house. Well, it’s not that bad, yet. Yet being the operative word. The girls and I have been busy the past month making ornaments for our tree, and other holiday crafts. Here’s a sample of what we’ve done:

All of the projects are inspired by Pinterest. Here are the details:

First, I whipped up these holiday decorations in about 5 minutes while the kids were in school. The instructions can be found here.

I absolutely LOVE them! They suit my taste/style perfectly! I removed the bells from the back of the deer before gluing down so they would be somewhat flat against the glass. It cost me $3 to make both. The ornaments were 2/$1 and the frames were $1 each at Dollar Tree. I already had the scrapbook paper. These will go on the mantel.

Next up, ornaments!

The girls and I worked on Santa ornaments first. I used this blog post for instructions and modified them to suit the supplies I had on hand.

We made a total of 5 and I need to finish them. I need to add some embroidery floss to hang them with and I’m thinking I might want to add a strip of black felt to make a belt, but I’m not sure.

Making the Santa ornaments inspired me to fiddle around and create a Mrs. Claus. Here’s what I came up with:

Isn’t she just too stinking cute?! I love her to bits! I need to make 4 more now.

Living in Maryland means we sometimes have snow on Christmas, but it’s not guaranteed.  Well, the girls and I decided we would make sure we have snow on Christmas every year. First we made some Model Magic snowflakes following this tutorial.

We were able to get 11 snowflakes out of 2 packages of Model Magic. I didn’t want to make them too thin so they’d be sturdy once dried. They turned out pretty much awesome! I thought about drawing designs on them with red Sharpie, but I actually like them just the way they are. I hung them on our chandelier to dry, which took about 2 or 3 days.

One of my favorite experiments in high school chemistry was growing crystals. When I saw this blog post I just knew I needed to share that experience with my daughters. Science really can be stunningly beautiful! Here’s how our crystal flakes turned out:

In person they look like they are encrusted with diamonds. So darn pretty! I can’t wait to see them on the lit tree. The sparkles will just be amazing!

I’ve also been sewing. I have nothing to show, though, as I’m still in muslin stages on a couple of garments. As soon as I get some finished pieces I’ll be blogging about them. Also, I’ve been actively job hunting. I’m sick of living in this rental house and want to move ASAP, so I need an income sooner rather than later. It’s been a rather busy month.

Halloween 2011 Costume

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Halloween 2011 Costume
Here is what I’ll be wearing to my sister in law’s annual birthday/Halloween party. I own the fallen angel costume already and I’ll be making the cloak. The rest I need to buy (except the makeup, I have plenty of that).

Why, hello there 2011!

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I used to do resolution lists when I was a teen.  I never kept them.  A few years ago I decided to set goals for myself, instead.  Those worked a LOT better for me.  So, without further ado, here’s what I want to accomplish over the next 12 months.

  1. Rebuild my wardrobe. – I have a TON of clothes.  Problem is, about 90% of them don’t fit!  I’ve been in process of cleaning EVERYTHING and separating out the things that no longer fit or are in too sad of shape to even attempt to repair.  Anything worth wearing I will be donating and the scrap clothes will either be tossed or salvaged for their fabric.  Once I see exactly what I have that I can wear well I will asses what I need to flesh out my wardrobe.  I want to do more sewing and knitting/crocheting this year, so I am going to try to make the things I need.
  2. Get my craft mojo back! – I spent nearly all of last year hardly making anything.  That is a sad state to be in for someone like me.  If my hands are idle I’m miserable.  So, I’m going to start working on creating beautiful things with my hands.  First up is a lovely sweater that I have the yarn for already!  Once I get that done I’m going to focus on finishing up some long abandoned projects that I need to get finished.
  3. Cull excess crap from my surroundings and life. – This is a twofold goal.  As I cull I also organize what I have left.  Yay! Anything worth any good is either going to be given away, donated, or sold.  Crap is going to the dump. I’m a hoarder and really, it’s gotten out of hand.
  4. Land my first RN job! – Kinda self explanatory.  Of course, I have to take my NCLEX first to get licensed.  I’ve sent out a ton of applications for jobs already.  Gotten one “NO”, one “get back in touch with us later” and a whole slew of crickets.  I need to start following up STAT!
  5. Get our finances in better order. – They aren’t AWFUL, but they are a little chaotic.  Gotta get back to where we were before I went to college.
  6. Prepare to buy our first house. – I hate renting.  I want my own house, yesterday.  Need to start saving ASAP.  Kinda need number 4 and 5 first, though.
  7. Devote more energy into my relationship with Bill. – He puts up with my crap.  It’s the least I can do.
  8. Devote more energy into my relationships with Evie and Abbie. – I love being told “You’re the best mom EVER!” and I want them to be able to say it more frequently than they previously have.
  9. Try out for another play! – I had so much fun trying out for Shadowlands, and got a callback from my first audition EVER!  I’m still beaming about that.  I want to try out for another one this year, or more.
  10. Prepare for my first competitive run. – I really want to do the Warrior Dash right around my 33rd birthday.  I’ve gotta exercise and get my stamina up as well as my strength.
  11. Go out and sing karaoke! – I haven’t done this in years!  And I loved it when I did it.  I’ve always wanted to stand in front of a crowd and sing, and really karaoke is about the only way it’s ever going to happen for me.  I know my childhood dream of being a professional singer is never going to come true, but I carry a decent enough tune for drunk folks to applaud.

So, tell me, what do you want to do this year?  Leave me a comment!

A Few of My Favorite Things

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For the first time in many years I finally enjoyed Christmas.  I really think a lot of that stems from my finding my joy in the past few months, but that’s another story.  We had a wonderful holiday and I truly hope you and your family did as well.  Here are my favorite things from this year’s Christmas.

1. Bill and the girls decorating the tree.

2. Our family star topper that Evie and Abbie helped me make for our tree.

3. Spending time with family.

4. Getting our first holiday family photo in years.  This is going to be next year’s Christmas card.

5. Having the family I have always wanted and being able to watch them enjoy themselves.

Where did she go?!!

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I’ve been MIA from the blog for a while due to life getting CRAZY stressful.  Here’s the news…

I passed all my classes this semester and will be graduating the nursing program in January.

I am signed up to take the NCLEX-RN exam for my Maryland RN license but I’m waiting for the Authorization to Test from the Maryland Board of Nursing before I can schedule a date.

Christmas is coming up WAY too fast for my liking.

Abbie has blossomed into a big girl practically overnight.  More will follow soon on that.

Evie’s been a little sweetheart lately.  I like that and I’ll take it as long as I can.

I’ve been on a organization/decluttering kick with the house lately.  Watch out!!!

I’m trying to get used to not having to worry about college.  lol

I’ve been attempting to earn my mom of the century award by doing fun stuff with and for the girls.

I’m so happy that now I can devote more time to my husband and my kids.

I’m enjoying the Christmas spirit for the first time in 14 years.  That is an incredible experience for me.

I’m flipping exhausted and could probably sleep for a week before I felt rested fully.

I promise I’ll post more often now.

Thankful for my freedom

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I come from a long line of folks who did what they had to in order to survive.  I have done some backtracking and homework on my ancestry and found many interesting souls that I am honored to be descended from.  Like most American families that have been here since pre-revolution, I have a few veterans, and folks involved in the military in some way,  in my lineage.  Read the rest of this entry