Saturday, November 24, 2012

Just For Me

Don't bother to read this.  I needed to Pin It and I couldn't cause the page had no pictures.  Soooo problem solved. <3  Just planning planning planning.  I'll be back with a real update soon...I swear.

How Much and of What?

Increase amount for dinner parties and gatherings longer than 4 hours.
It's always good to go with a lot of champagne during the holidays.
5 bottles13 bottles25 bottles50 bottles
When in doubt: Pabst Blue Ribbon
20 bottles per hour50 bottles per hour100 bottles per hour200 bottles per hour
Don't know what to buy? See our bar guide, below.
1.5 bottles per hour3 bottles per hour6 bottles per hour12 bottles per hour
Go heavy on tonic water. And don't forget diet soda.
4 liters per hour9 liters per hour17 liters per hour33 liters per hour
Chop some; leave some whole.
Useful and delicious.
1 jar each3 jars each5 jars each10 jars each
Everyone runs out of ice. Don't let this happen to you.
5 lbs13 lbs25 lbs50 lbs
Reduce this number if you are offering plates for food.
40 per hour100 per hour200 per hour400 per hour

Shopping List

  1. GIN
    What a real martini is made with.  We like Junipero, Hendrick's, and Boodles.
    You're not in college anymore; buy something decent, like Herredura or Don Julio.
    If your crowd is of the bourbon-and-Coke variety, go cheap.  If not, opt for something like Maker's Mark, Woodford Reserve, or Old Dip Van Winkle.
    The other half of a Manhattan.
  5. RUM
    Should you want to break out the muddler for mojitos, you'll also need a bottle of this.  Try Appleton Estate.
    The other half of a martini.
    Bushmills and Jameson are both good staples.
    Don't skimp on this one.  The Macallan Cask Strength is a good option.
  9. VODKA
    The clear stuff always goes first.  Buy lots and buy well.  Grey Goose and Belvedere are both solid.
    It's a tool, not a toy.  Keep anyone with a Tom Cruise complex away.
    The ones not used in drinks will be eaten by guests.
    Someone will spill.
    For those who prefer their drinks stirred, not shaken.
    Skip the umbrellas and plastic swords. But never skip the lemons and limes.
    Tongs don't work.  Use a large spoon instead.

Friday, October 5, 2012

It's been long time, I shouldn't have left you...

I know, its been a hot minute since I posted anything.  Stuff around here is...well...going.  Busy all the time, between kids, homework, Dave's retirement, spending time with friends and family, and general laziness, there just isn't enough hours in the day.

I wanted to post about some recent things Dave and I have been doing to the house.  We repainted downstairs, added some clever DIY and just updated the look of our home a little.

We saw the top one at World Market for 70 bucks.  We decided to make it for WAY less using some wooden letters from Michaels and a map from Staples.

Then we painted downstairs a BRIGHT yellow color.  (that I adore!!)

We got this little sign for our bathroom door...

And here are the letters on the grey wall with our cruise pictures underneath.  

Soooooo simple and looks AWESOME!  I am so very happy with the turn out!!

Anyhooooo, just wanted to write *something for the sake of writing...hoping that everyone is well xoxox

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Stellar week

This has been a great week so far. Not only has Timmy said some funny stuff but now we have Katie here so I'm sure the laughs will keep coming!!

But the real reason you all read is to know what crazy stuff came out of Timmy's mouth this morning.

Timmy: mom lemme guess. Today is Wednesday.
Me: yes. Today, is indeed, Wednesday Timmy: yes!! Victory is MINE!!!!

That really just happened. Seriously? Victory is mine? Where does this kid come up with this stuff?!?

Hope you are having a good summer. Much love all around...

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Pinterest #7

Its almost summer.  Dave is home.  This means impromptu BBQs and me pulling stuff out my ass.  So today's Pinterest trial was simple easy stuff...a rainbow fruit tray and salsa.  Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy!!!  

Salsa was SOOOO simple!!  Followed the instructions from the pin and blended it all up in the blender.  I doubled the recipe and instead of the original Rotel that the recipe calls for, I used one hot can and one original. Next time, I'll stick to all original.  Its REALLY good and so easy, I will DEF make it again!!

fruit tray--Again, this was a no brainer people. I used strawberries, mandarin oranges, pineapple, kiwi, red grapes and black grapes. =)  

Happy Eating!!!

Rainbowy fruits <3

easiest salsa EVER!!!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Pinterest #6

I saw this and IMMEDIATELY wanted to make it. I thought it would be perfect for our vacay for Sydney on the beaches on Cozumel. Last week I stopped by Michael's and picked up a bunch of bandanas for Rachel and myself and made a Bandana Quilt. It was super easy, you basically buy a bunch of bandanas and put them right sides together and sew. I am think after vacation I am going to add a few more squares, I want to make a "quilt" big enough to be a picnic blanket. I think a 3x3 would work... Anyhow, here's a pic of my completed masterpiece.

Pinterest #5

My friend Maggs is getting hitched soon. She comes over one day and tells me about this NIGHTMARE she had about spilling stuff all over her wedding dress. She said she needed me to make her an apron/bib for her big day so she can actually grub at her reception.

We went off to Hobby Lobby last week and found some fabric in her wedding colors. I found a tutorial on Pinterest and then googled some other ideas. So we could make it more tailored to what she needed/wanted out of her very unique "Bapron". I finished up the project yesterday morning.

Maggs in the finished product
pinning the layers
after the layers were gathered to make the ruffles
laying out the top "bib" piece

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Even Timmy's Friends Say Funny Things

Today, while waiting for school to start, I was talking to Timmy's best friend's grandma. I was telling Rose how Timmy told me that Vinny could not say "yellow", instead pronouncing is "lellow" and the other day in class he said "Yellow" so the whole class cheered for him. She and I were laughing about it as Timmy and Vinny came over to where we were sitting.

Rose: he has problems with certain words. Vanilla and refrigerator are 2 that we are working on.
Me: Awww Nik used to call a refrigerator a "fridgey ridgey".
Rose: Vinny, what kind of ice cream did you have yesterday?
Me: good job dude!!
Rose: and what's the thing called where we keep milk?
Vinny: :::blank stare::::
Rose: you know where the milk and juice is... What is it called??
Vinny: ::eyebrow raise:: Target??
Me: OH!!!! ::::dies laughing::::

I swear I started to cry. I was laughing so hard. Who knew Timmy's friends were funny too!!

Monday, March 12, 2012

Dinner Conversation

Timmy has been watching a lot of Dinosaur Train lately.  "Gonna ride ride ride on the Dinosaur Trainnnnnnnnnnnn".  Apparently he is picking up some great knowledge from the Pteranadon Family. This happened at dinner tonight:

Timmy:  Mom, I have a hypothesis.
Me: A hypothesis?  Really?
Nik: You don't even know what that means!
Timmy: Yes I DO!!!  A hypothesis is an idea you can test!
Nik: :::::silence::::::::
Me: thats right Timmy!  What is your hypothesis?
Timmy: Whales used to have arms, then they got broken off, then they went to the animal doctor and they couldn't fix them, so NOWWWWWWWWWW whales don't have arms.
Me:  that is a GREAT hypothesis!
Nik:  seriously? whales had arms?
Me: :::death glare:::::
Timmy:  I also have another hypothesis.  T-Rex shoots guns and knives.
Me: Wowwwww, that is a great hypothesis Tuney!
Nik: :::eye roll::::
Me: ::::death glare pt 2::::

So my 5 year old knows about hypothesis's...I'm pretty impressed.  Thanks Dinosaur Train!

School Conversation

 This entry is brought to you by the letter F.  Timmy is learning to write his name in school.  So the other day his teacher pulls me aside and says "Timmy said the funniest thing today.  We were discussing the letter F and Timmy shared with the class 'MY BROTHER GETS F's ON HIS HOMEWORK!!!', I'm sorry if your son gets F's but it was really funny!"

Seriously?  Way to dime your brother out Tuna!

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Dear Future Military Husband--

I watch a lot of crap TV. I do. I own that. Wanna know what happened on Teen Mom, call me. Wanna get the run down on Survivor, the Amazing Race or Big Brother, all you gotta do is hollllaaa. Don't even get me started about The Shore. I've been watching a lot of Mob Wives lately. And the more I watch the more I think...these crazy bitches are closer to my reality than any other show.

And I know what you are thinking...seriously Laura, wise guys and soldiers are no where NEAR in the same league. And in some respects that's completely correct. But sit and listen to those women talk about things using "code", listen to them talk about how they live a "lifestyle", watch them cope with marriages falling apart due to distance, see their faces when they get a phone call. Those things, those are MY everyday experiences.

How many of my Army wife friends out there have told their mother "he'll be back from 'blankets' 10 days before my birthday in the month my 2nd son was born". How many have been asked "how do you do that? Be apart for so long?" and your only response is "it's just our life. I choose to be with him so this is what I do".

So that brings me around to the point of all this. Sometimes, when you marry into "our lifestyle", you are completely unprepared. I read a blog not too long ago called Dear Future Military Wife (read it here), and I thought it was brilliant. It summed up anything I could ever think to say to someone marrying a military man. It said things I can only WISH I would have thought to say to some of my newly married friends. But I was also thinking that someone needs to tell those guys, that marry these naive girls, things they should do to help prepare her for what with surely be the best, worst, most awesome, horrific experience of her existence. And since this is my blog, well I'm gonna lay it all out there...

Dear Future Military Husband,

Congratulations! You are getting married!! What an exciting time for you! Filled with love, hope, happiness and...trepidation. It's scary to think that you are responsible for someone else. So it's your job to make sure she is prepared. Educate her.

You have to tell her a few basic things. Starting with your duty station. Explain to her about your division. About your brigade. About your battalion. About your company. Your platoon. Your squad. Your team. Show her where you work. What you do.

Help her make friends. Introduce her to your coworkers. And introduce her to their wives. Encourage her to try out the FRG, even if you heard its awful. Let her make that decision. Encourage her to join the Enlisted Spouses Club. Or the officers wives club. She can have 750 million "civilian" friends but one good fellow military wife will trump all those people in a second.

If you are deployed, teach her OPSEC. Tell her its not ok to put information about you on her Facebook page. That she can't have a countdown that says only 43 more days...only 42 more days...only 41 more days.  Can she say "I love tomorrow" ABSOLUTELY! Can she say "OMG my hubby is coming home tomorrow at 730!!!" No.  But she doesn't know this unless you tell her!!

Remind her that mail service is slow, at best, and the Internet is inconsistent. Sometimes you won't talk to her for hours, days, weeks at a time. make sure she knows you are going to miss Christmas and birthdays and anniversaries and the birth of children.  Its not fair, and none of us like it, but its unavoidable.  Tell her you can NOT spend all day day online waiting for HER to get on.  You have a job to focus on.  And on the other hand, she has a job too.  Whether its an actual working out of the house job, a going to school for a better education job, a managing the household job. Sometimes she doesn't have time to sit around all day and just wait for you to get online.  Life doesn't stop on the home front, just because you are not here.  Let her live, let her breathe, let her be an adult.

Know that "those" wives, the ones that whore around any chance they get, are the exception, NOT the rule.  It takes a pretty awesome woman to marry you.  It does.  Not everyone has the patience for this. But if you married her, you know SHE does.  She is the RULE.  Don't treat her like the exception.

Tell her no matter how many moves, in how many years, home is where you make it.  "Home" is not always where you are from, where your parents live, where granny and gramps live.  "Home is where the Army sends you" was such a major theme of the first 13 years of my marriage.  And its true.  It's all true.  I know women who can make a home of a spacious 5 bedroom single family house on a military installation and I know women who can make a home of a 1 bedroom apartment in a not so fantastic neighborhood.  Every new assignment brings around new places to explore, new food to taste, new friends to find.  Embrace that.  Teach her that moving isn't scary its an adventure!  Plus there is the whole upside of having someone else do all that packing for you. =)

Reassure her that even though conversations may be short, time together may be sparse, that she is always in your heart.  The things your do are for her, to better her life, to better YOUR life.  Never hang up the phone, or sign off an IM or end an email without saying "I love you", you never know when the next time you get to tell her will be, so do it every time.

And I'm sure there are so many more things I could tell you to help her, but hopefully, you'll know what to do.  Maybe you'll even have a more experienced, higher ranked guy around who can show your the ropes.  Maybe you'll have a soldier in your platoon or your squad who has been married a few years and has been right where you are sitting and he can offer a little advice.  My wish for you, as I close this out, is a life full of happiness, short deployments, easy moves, smiley babies, awesome neighbors, great duty assignments and a fantastic slice of pizza =)

With all my love,
A Wife Who Has Been There <3

Friday, February 24, 2012

A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Words #4

Oh Timmy....

"Mom, take my picture and send it to Mike so he can see I am gonna beat the crap out of him"

Monday, February 13, 2012

Pinterest #4

And lastly, for tonight anyhow, is the Super Bowl Snack Stadium. This was all Maggie's idea. She saw it on Pinterest (click here to be taken to the original post)and we decided that this HAD to happen for the Giants "Victor-y" Bowl over the stupid Pats :)

This monstrosity has a Rice Krispie Treat stadium filled with chips surrounding the guacamole field, salsa and cheese dip end zones, beef jerky uprights and candy players. It was fun to make and fun to eat!!! Def will do this for future Super Bowls :)

And in case you had any doubt who we were rooting for...I'll add some pictures of that too!

l to r: me, sydney, maggie, shelley, katelyn, rachel, taylor

Pinterest #3

Annnnd moving right along...

Valentine's Day Buttons :) (Click here for the original post)

Soooo easy!! I had one bag of Hershey Hugs, one bag of valentine colored M&Ms and one bag of those square pretzels. One Hug on each pretzel, throw 'em in the oven at 250* for 5 mins. Take them out, push one M&M in the center and let cool. I put mine in the fridge. Done. So cute and easy!!!!

Pinterest #2

I am really slacking on the posts. I apologize. I have been a Pinterest queen these days, making things left and right. So in rapid succession, let's get caught up shall we??

The "Diabeetus" Cake. And yes it's as good as it looks. A layer of chocolate chip cookie dough on the bottom, topped with 30-odd double stuffed Oreos topped with brownie batter. Took about an hour to bake and it was worth the wait. Def not an every day cake but special occasions...YES!!!

Monday, January 30, 2012

Pinterest #1

So I have made it my goal to make sure to post a blog about things I have made or done, that is inspired by Pinterest. Today's post is about my newspaper nails.(original post here)

This one was super easy. I painted my nails with a very light shade of pink. Waited for it to dry completely then dipped each finger in vodka. Then, put a small strip of newspaper on the wet nail and hold in place for about 3 seconds. Lift and voila!! Cover with a coat of topcoat and you have super cute nails!!

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Oh you suck me in....

Pinterest.  I. Am. Obsessed!  What a fantastic place to find amazing ideas for crap that I have on hand and NEVER thought to use in that fashion.  So I have decided, that I am going tos tart sharing my Pinterest adventures on my blog.  I have tried a few recipes and I have my eye on some crafts.  There will be a blog soon, with some pictures from my new adventures. Stay tuned...

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Unless you want a punch in the face...

I read this today and thought about if I should repost it.  And I decided, yep.  This sums it up.  Everything my friends and I talk about at dinner every week.  Everything that I've said in my head.  Out loud. In a status update.  And if you are offended...really, get over yourself.

1. “Aren’t you afraid that he’ll be killed?”
(This one ranks in at number one on the “duh” list. Of course we’re afraid. We’re terrified. The thought always lingers at the backs of our minds —but thanks brilliant, you just brought it back to the front. Maybe next you can go ask someone with cancer if they’re scared of dying.)
2. “I don’t know how you manage. I don’t think I could do it.”
(This is intended to be a compliment. Though, its just a little annoying. Here’s why: it’s not like all of us military wives have been dreaming since childhood of the day we’d get to be anxious single moms who carry cell phones with us to the bathroom and in the shower. We’re not made of some mysterious matter that makes us more capable, we just got asked to take on a challenging job. So we rose to the challenge and found the strength to make sacrifices.) *and let me add...if you don't think you could do it, YOU CAN'T.  Plain and simple.  I'm better than you.  Realize, Acknowledge and Move On.*

3. “At least he’s not in Iraq.”
(This is the number one most annoying comment for those whose husbands are in Afghanistan. What do they think is happening in Afghanistan? An international game of golf?)

4. “Do you think he’ll get to come home for Christmas/anniversary/birthday/birth of a child/wedding/family reunion, etc?”
(Don’t you watch the news? No! They don’t get to come home for any of these things. Please don’t ask again.)
5. “What are you going to do to keep yourself busy while he’s gone?”
(Short answer: Try to keep my sanity. Maybe there’s a military wife out there who gets bored when her husband leaves. For the rest of us, those with and without children, we find ourselves having to be two people. That keeps us plenty busy. We do get lonely, but we don’t get bored.)

6. “How much longer does he have until he can get out?”
(This one is annoying to many of us whether our husbands are deployed or not. Many of our husbands aren’t counting down the days until they “can” get out. Many of them keep signing back up again and again because they actually love what they do or they VOLUNTEER AGAIN and AGAIN to go back to Iraq b/c there is work that needs to be done.)

7. “This deployment shouldn’t be so bad, now that you’re used to it.”
(We do learn coping skills. We figure out ways to make life go smoother while the guys are gone. But it never gets “easy” and the bullets and bombs don’t skip over our guys just because they’ve been there before. The worry never goes away.)

8. “My husband had to go to Europe for business once for three weeks. I totally know what you’re going through.”
(This one is similar to number two. Do not equate your husband’s three week trip to London/Omaha/Tokyo/etc. with a 6-15 month or more deployment to a war zone. Aside from the obvious time difference, nobody shot at your husband or tried to blow him up with an I.E.D., your husband could call home pretty much any time he wanted to, and he flew comfortably on a commercial plane. We do not feel bonded to you in the slightest because of this comment and, if anything, we probably resent you a bit for it. Comparing a 12 month combat deployment to a few weeks business trip is like comparing a crappy Hyundai Excel with a Mercedes convertible.) **this is MY FAVORITE! Please please please come say this to me if you want me to punch you in the face.  Civilians have NO CLUE what my days are like. Does your husband bring you home gifts from his business trips? Mine brings home sand, in a tiny little tabasco bottle.  Thats all.  And a SHIT ton of laundry that hasn't been washed properly in a year.  And nightmares.  Yeah.  Thats what I thought.  So shut your mouth.  And also, I don't care if your cousin's husbands brother is over there.  Its NOT THE SAME.  Wether its your son, your cousin, your best friend from junior high...I DON'T CARE!  You can justify all you want, but its NOT THE SAME.  This is MY HUSBAND.  The father of my children.  My other half.  I am not the same without him, nor is he without me.  Don't try to say that your son, cousin, BFF being deployed is the same as my husband being deployed.  Unless you want a punch in the face.**

9. “Wow you must miss him?”
(This one also gets antoher big “duh”. Of course we miss our men. There are some wives who do not and they’re now divorced.)

10. “Where is he exactly? Where is that?”
(I don’t expect non-military folks to be able to find Anbar Province on a map, but they should know by now that it’s in Iraq. Likewise, know that Kabul and Kandahar are in Afghanistan. Know that Muqtada al Sadr is the insurgent leader of the Mahdi Army in Iraq and that Sadr City is his home area. Know that Iran is a major threat to our country and that it is located between Afghanistan and Iraq. Our country has been at war in Afghanistan for seven years and at war in Iraq for five years. These basic facts are not secrets, they’re on the news every night and in the papers every day —and on maps everywhere.) **here's a tip...GOOGLE!**

11. “Well, he signed up for it, so it’s his own fault whatever happens over there.
(Yes, ignorant, he did sign up. Each and every day he protects your right to make stupid comments like that. He didn’t sign up and ask to be hit by anything, he signed up to protect his country. Oh, and by the way, he asked me to tell you that “You’re welcome.” He’s still fighting for your freedom.)

12. “Don’t you miss sex! I couldn’t do it!”
(hmmm, no i don’t miss sex. i’m a robot. seriously…military spouses learn quickly that our relationships must be founded on something greater than sex. We learn to appreciate the important things, like simply hearing their voices, seeing their faces, being able to have dinner together every night. And the hard truth is, most relationships probably couldn’t withstand 12 months of sex deprivation.)

13. “Well in my opinion…..”
(Stop right there. Yo, I didn’t ask for you your personal political opinions. Hey, I love a heated political debate, but not in the grocery store, not in Jamba Juice, not at Nordstrom, not in a bar when I’m out with my girls trying to forget the war, and CERTAINLY NOT AT WORK. We tell co-workers about deployments so when we have to spend lunch hours running our asses off doing errands and taking care of the house, dog, and kids, they have an understanding. We do not tell co-workers and colleagues because we are giving an invitation to ramble about politics or because we so eagerly want to hear how much they hate the President, esp. while we’re trying to heat up our lean cuisines in the crappy office microwaves.)

Last, but not least….

14. “OH, that’s horrible…I’m so sorry!”
(He’s doing his job and he’s a badass. Don’t be sorry. Be appreciative and please take a moment out of your comfortable American lives to realize that our soldiers/marines/airmen/coasties/sailors fight the wars abroad so those wars stay abroad.)

Monday, January 23, 2012

Today is *the day!

Its finally here.  The big day.  We've been waiting *at least a year for this and finally its upon us.

Timmy turned 5 today.  And that means, oh yes, he got his ninja skills today.  He's been so very patient, waiting since his last birthday, to be 5, so those ninja skills would kick in.  And they don't disappoint.  Tomorrow morning when he wakes up, he will be a ninja.

Be warned...beware.  Cause when you least expect it....Hiiiiiiiiiya!!!

Happy Birthday Tuney!  I love you so much!!

Monday, January 2, 2012

My Year in Review

Rewinding back to Myspace blog days, I thought a year end wrap up was needed.  Shall we head to the highlight reel?

January--Timmy turned 4.  We celebrated with a Toy Story party with all his friends and family. It was a fun day with cake and a TON of Toy Story presents! 

February--Sydney turned 10.  Dave was at JRTC in Louisiana for the whole month.  Nik went on his first date, I tool him and his girlllllllllfriend to see Gnomeo and Juliet.

March--We celebrated Dave's birthday.  I was back in the gym getting ready for our cruise in April.  Timmy got in on the couponing train.

April--celebrated my 13 year anniversary with my hubby and took a cruise with my best friends, my niece and nephew and my mom and sister.

May--Dave left for deployment #3 =(

June--we found out that Taylor was having a baby =)

July--Katie came to visit and we went to the Grand Canyon and saw the final Harry Potter movie.

August--back to school!  3 kids, 3 schools.  Hectic to say the least, but they are each loving every second! I also found at the very end of the month. <3

September--I became the mom of a teenager.  God help me...

October--I turned 36.  We found out that Taylor is having a girl.

November--Thanksgiving and the month of Thanks on Facebook.

December--ran my first 5K.  We celebrated Christmas and New Years with my mom.

It was definitely a good year.  This year is looking to be even better.  I get my husband home for R&R and not too long after that I get him home for good. I welcome the chance to never have to send him away again. I get to take my kids on a cruise.  I get to cruise with my best friends.  Timmy is going to start Kindergarten.  Sydney is going to start middle school.  Nik is going to be one year closer to driving.  The opportunities will be endless!

My hope for all of you is that this New Year bestows many blessings upon you and yours. And maybe a pair of Christian Louboutins <3

From Laura

Just a note to thank you for reading and laughing with me at the ones who make my life what it is!