Southern girl plowing her way through life making the rules up as she goes. Warning: likes to bake, curse, quote movies/literature, is tattooed, married to The Man and mother of two girls. We bring new meaning to the "griswald way of life". Come along for the ride!

Life is My Highway

Montana and North Dakota have become home.... dang it lol.

These Girls

Lord help me but these babies wear me out.... they are just perfect!


Yes, it's from last winter but I adore this us....


This kid glows from the inside out... my almost 11 year old!

We are so smexy!

Favorite sport: embarrassing our kids in public


My mini-me is finding her own way in life

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

I heart facebook

Facebook is the shiznick.

I'm finding peeps left and right......okay, my girlfriend is finding all of our old military wife friends from our first duty station and I'm piggy-backing. Cause I'm honest (and she'll kick my butt if I don't fess, hi rock! Go get that steak!) and all.

Man I love catching up.........

Friday, April 24, 2009

Proof of my Landscaping Addiction....

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Landscaping Junkie

I've gone off the deep end.

That is really the only excuse I have. I told myself that my front landscaping needed just TWO more plants, red I think and it's done. Finally done.

Then I went to the nursery on my lunch. And filled my car.

Overheard on ride home, Princess talking to The Man on phone:

"I'm sitting all crooked.....cause mom went on lunch to get dog food and TWO got like 40........there's no room in here for us......."

Little ratter-outters. They told on me.

Tomorrow after work, I'm totally planting.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Warnings on the Side...of the bottle

Since living GF is not always possible (damn contamination!) I sometimes find myself swollen and in serious pain from my stomach thing. So I have to crawl into the bathroom closet (or purse, which ever is closer) and dig out my tummy pills. Which are half pain pills, which make me looooooooooooooooopy.

Normally they make me seriously sleepy, 98% assurance that I'll be asleep within 20 minutes of swallowing that little blue pill. Tonight, the pink elephants are dancing and they are so freaking loud. Rude bast*ards.

Turns out you should not take on empty stomach. Says the little know it all sticker on side of bottle. people actually read those.

Now these are the same pills I've taken for over a year now in situations like these, but apparently never before have I forgotten to eat first.

Princess offered to put me to bed, but now I'm stuck waiting up with my eyes propped up on toothpicks until they fall asleep. Cause I just can't crash until I know they are out.

But it's obvious that loooooooooopy agrees with me. Just nailed some homework and cleaned out my fridge. Tomorrow I'm wondering if I'll find that my homework is written in Latin and the milk is in the dishwasher.

Putting myself to bed. Looooooopy and all.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Cooking lessons

Does this look gross? Cause my kids are tearing the kitchen up looking for more, too bad I ate the last piece hiding in the bathroom.

Turns out that gluten-free bread sucks. Seriously sucks, unless you decorate it. I had the brilliant idea for a yummy treat (OKay found a good recipe online and figured I could use my GF bread to make it). So I whipped out the rosemary, garlic salt, cheese sticks and butter to slather up my GF bread and broil that baby up good.

Now what to make to go with the bread, cause you can't just eat bread for dinner. Even yummy cheesy bread. Good parenting it is not.

So I threw together my homemade sauce....

Added some rice fettuccine......

Oh my heavens, pardon me for making a pig of myself but damn that was good.
Lesson learned: GF bread can be broiled or toasted with just about anything to make it edible.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Slow going, but going....

Our purty little house when we were considering purchasing it. Almost a year ago.... Man the work we've done on this place. Could somebody please tell me next time that a freshly built house is MORE work than a normal house. Please. So notice the landscaping, that is the topic of conversation today.

So today the kids and I hit up the store for more soil and 2 more Steve's. (Funny story we spent some time chit chattting with the neighbor's while unloading them all, I'm referring to the shrubs as Steve, thoroughly confusing them until I remembered that the hubs name is Steve, that got some laughs when I explained).

So this is where we left off Friday evening. Two Steve's and alot of plants that are so small you can't see. Sorry. Plus a bucket full of bulbs that may or may not bloom (but hey, I wore gloves so hopefully that will help). My mom assures me that they will pop one day and be beautiful. I'm having my doubts. I'm slowly learning this gardening thing.

So once we pulled the offending "same as everyone else" clone bushes, I planted the new Steve's. I think they are purty. My pots of tulips mixed in for good measure. I do love the idea of year round green, especially here.
But since I'm frugal by nature........

I transplanted the clones into the backyard. Up against the back of the house where they'll get plenty of morning sun and mixed in the rest of the bulbs. Cross your fingers. The clones are actually starting to bloom, that is just from this week so hopefully they'll take well to their new location.
Already peeps in the neighborhood are driving by real slow to get a peek.......

Although it's probably not the landscaping their looking at. We kinda made a mess. Professionals we are not.
Excuse me while I go clean up my front yard, we ain't that kind of trashy.

Another Reason 2 Not "Heart" Utah

So it's April....spring is in the air and all that jazz...

So what do you do when you open your door one day last week and you see snow. Alot of snow.

If you're Princess, you sleep in. Late. If you're Duchess you dress in mis-matched clothes and forego brushing your teeth or hair and hit the couch with you DS.

If you're Murphy, you sit by the door and hope/pray that someone till be stupid enough to let you out so you can roll in it till you're a puppy-sicle.

If you're me, you go take pictures, then crawl into a warm tub with a good book.

Cause surely you shouldn't have to go anywhere in this weather right? Cause it's April.

But then 30 minutes later, you pull your head out and round everyone up for another day of life here in Utah. School/work. Rinse, repeat.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Curb Appeal

So I did some time on the Homes & Gardens website, which is my crack lately. I just need my fix. And two points became obvious.

1. I live in a cookie cutter neighborhood. All the houses are 1 of 10 styles, they are all the in the same color family and since its a new neighborhood, there are no tree except the skinny little ones on the curbs that the city planted. Thus, my landscaping is the exact replica of all my neighbors, right down to the number of bushes and wood chips.
2. Colors: as I said the color is obviously the same of every other house.
So according to H&G, there are two immediate things I need to do to enhance my curb appeal.
Move and ... I'm kidding since it's apparent that me and this house will be together for awhile, thank you economy.
So yesterday I started on landscaping. I tore out most of the offending ugly stick shrubs and got busy.

I quick trip to Home Depot and I had the basics (in addition to the pine shrubs and tuplis I'd already planted). Notice my OCD method of prepping for work, everything is laid out nice and neatly, according to my list. Mental much?

I started with lots of new soil. Necessary I think. Then I added some spiky plants, don't ask me names, I lost all the tags. But I like the attitude of these babies. I also read that grouping in 2's and 3's are best. So I got 3. Cause I follow directions very well.

Color was necessary since my tulips haven't popped yet. So I got some calla lilies. 2 of them since they are like GOLD apparently. Damn.

Meet Steve, who has a twin also named Steve. (Over the Hedge watchers will recognize this) Duchess names them as a set apparently. Steve looked alot bigger at Home Depot but once planted he lost some height (say it with me, duh) but I still like them, even if they aren't as magestic as I thought they'd be. But I am helping them along, Miracle Gro folks. Plus so far, I've managed to beat the black thumb of death by using garden gloves....
The work continues today as I weed the flower bed, rake the backyard in prep of sod and get my weedeating done. I may even do some mowing, as it needs it, even if it is brown grass.
And I'm getting kicked off the computer cause Duchess wants to do webkinz. Peace out.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Thinking inside the box...

The one thing that we women tend to suck at is compartmentalizing. This straight from my last psych class, but I can so dig that.

We let all the edges of our lives overlap into one another.

This tends to make us extremely good organizers, able to juggle the largest number of things at one time. We remember vaguely familiar things and are able to perform at the highest level while wearing all our many hats.

Men tend to compartmentalize, again per my psych book. True again. They switch hats, pulling on one distinct hat while pushing the rest of the hats into a box, where they close the lid.

I'm gonna learn to compartmentalize, which does not come natural to me. The problem is when one part of my life is on the downswing, it bleeds over into all the other areas.

This was a gentle way of saving that when I get upset, it makes me a all-around-pissy-arse cause I can't turn it off.

Flipping that mental facet! Twisting that baby and working on compartmentalizing while still juggling.

Surely this is not as impossible as it sounds. Right?

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

The Cure for A Rough Day

Monday, April 13, 2009

End in Sight?

I'm worried that there is no end in sight......the sprinklers were done this weekend. Now it's muddy and sad looking but with sprinkler heads. Go Man Go. Poor guy was in town 48 hours but managed to work like a mule and get her done. Next visit, in two weeks when we build the deck. You know, where the orange lines

Easter rocked. What a great weekend. I must say that living in two different states sucks but it really makes you treausre that face to face time. Plus, you talk alot more.....really talk and chit/chat which is important peeps. Good thing I shaved my legs ;)

Statistics is in full force, week 2 now. Snow for the next three days, which means you'll see alot more of me cruising sites and leaving comments now that I can't be outside, sigh......

Freaking Utah.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Do You?

Do you ever get up, shower and then lay out clothes and breakfast then go to wake your children and find this?
The little stinkers gravitate to my bed. With the dog. Leaving me no room. They can't help themselves. Thus its even harder to drag their happy little butts out of bed and get them productive. That's the goal around here, making them suckers productive citizens!

The lump in the center is Murphy. Who likes to sprawl out in the middle, usually with his paws raised to the roof! No modesty that dog!
But speaking of my room, I did a little re-arranging lately. I have this thing about having a "haven", a place where I feel comfy and pampered at the end of the day. I go through stages where I want my bedroom to look like a hotel room, but nicer....with the family touches that are obviously missing in a hotel....
So in a moment of utter boredom, with some time off between classes, I re-arranged again. And added some interesting touches....
I put a bench in my bedroom. Usually this thing floats around the house. It's visited the foyer, the balcony area, and lately behind my sofa as a catch all that opens into the kitchen. Except, I love it in my bedroom. I have a reading corner now. With my purty lamp and The Man's record player, old school peaceful. I do so love some vinyls.

So I ditched a nightstand and put my bed on the east facing wall, that's good fung shi right? Did I even spell that right?

I junked alot of well...junk and then cleaned out behind everything and set my room up with a nice walk flow. I do love it, compared with the mess it was before........
Now we'll see what The Man thinks......since I left the deer skulls on the wall (and worked them into the decor I think) I should get major points!
And since he's coming home with weekend, well I'm just plum happy peeps.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Before I Met The Internet....

Utah has frozen my ambitions. Seriously, I have never been an indoor person till we moved to this place. I see the proof when I dig through some old pics. I got involved, I did things, I went places, some where even places I couldn't take my kids......sigh.

I refuse to think I've gotten old, or fat. So hence it must be Utah's fault. Damn weather. :)

But it was this unexpected trip down memory lane that just had me in stitches earlier. How quickly time does fly.....

In Texas I was a volunteer with a drug rehabilition non-profit organization that seemed to always be lacking in funds. So every year we did a walk to earn money for it. Look how little my girls were. Duchess was obviously trying to make a break for it before the walk even started. (What you don't see is the little red wagon we used to pull their happy bums for five miles) And this lovely lady with me, my choir director from church who was ALWAYS the first to volunteer to do anything. We made a small but powerful team.

In Oklahoma, Princess and I were entertaining ourselves at the Tulsa State Fair while The Man was deployed. We rode bulls peeps. I have no idea what The Man's reaction was when I sent him this picture but I'm pretty sure he busted something laughing at me, I'm easy to laugh at.

Duchess was the cutest dang bug of a baby ever. So tiny and so quiet. We called her the "Wyatt Earp" of all babies. Wish that were still true, now she never shuts up. Ever. E-V-E-R. As I type this, she is talking in her sleep.

In San Diego, we seldom just sat and watched tv. Oh no, we used our livingroom for fun stuff, like dancing. We boogied down. All the time. I love watching The Man dance with our girls. He's quite the dancer folks, don't let him lie to you. Princess dances as graceful as he does, too bad she can't walk in a straight line otherwise, she gets that from me.

Once upon a time, I used to attend Navy balls. With grown ups, babysitters, and dresses! I pinned up my hair, stabbed some sparkly stuff in there, wore my thigh high boots underneath cause I couldn't find any black high heels at the last minute and off I went in my black and white ball gown. We were color coordinated. But damn he's hot huh? This picture is proof that he thinks I'm a dork and still loves me.
But then, oh then, I come across this picture. The one picture I'm pretty sure my man would like me to lose. But I can't help it, I drool over him. Even if it was taken on a wild and wooly day at sea.....when his only hobby was working out and his bisceps were larger than my head (seriously) and that was a little scary, okay not. This infamous picture will live on.......

Can you pic out my man? That's easy, he's the hot one.
Damn I miss you honey.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

A Day With Us

Come spend your day with us! We started our day early as we had a morning time birthday party for a lovely little 2 year old. So instead of cleaning up our house, we merely stepped over laundry, ignored the clutter and dishes, kissed the dog and headed out.

To find this:

Truly nasty weather early this morning. But it's all melted by afternoon so yeah! Spring may truly be around the corner. Notice my budding tulips! Go go tulips go. My mum planted them hence their not dying from the black thumb disease I have.
Around noon, we were done with the party, except I couldn't post pics cause I do that without parental permissions and frankly since they don't know me as Hope4Grace, that would be a pickle, so there you have it.
Next up, since we were already in civilization, a quick trip to my favorite evil empire.....

Where I happily picked up some reading materials. Woohoo, seriously wondering what it would take to get The Man into a kilt.....I'm seriously thinking on that one. Yum. From there, we managed to drag the children kicking and screaming in Cabela's, the store of all outdoor goodies.

They do so adore anything redneck, so we embraced inner-selves. I am always amazed to see Duchess go ga-ga over animals. She just loves them.

Even fish.

Look at that face. Ahhhhh!
Got the ankle holster I needed for my gun. Just like this, except with a fashionable high heel or a good sturdy boot. And better looking gams.

Then spoiled thyself and got this sweatshirt, I love green and I heart Cabelas.....go figure.
Got home and crashed. Big long nap and now I'm doing laundry, which you don't need to see, and cooking dinner.
Cause (sniff sniff) my mommy didn't give me no shrimps!

Hockey Babes...

Last night I took the girls to one of the final hockey games of the season. Princess and I are fans. Duchess likes to eat, so as long as the food keeps coming she is cool, otherwise she's ready to go.
Hence the food.

And don't be judging, I had little makeup on and my hair was a mess. Fact of life, it was Friday and I ain't looking to impress anyone, lol. However, I should have brought wipes to clean Duchess' face though, cause she was a MESS.

Our Canadian hockey loving friends went too, they are season ticket holders and both of them play. So I get all the blow by blow info as I'm just learning the game. Congrats to the expecting mother, it's a BOY! Alan Lewis will join us in August.

But the poor hometeam was getting their arses kicked badly so by 7 minutes to game end, we bailed to miss the traffic. But all in all, what a great night. Even if Duchess went to bed with a tummy ache.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Waiting on Duchess....

Every morning there is something that threatens to throw us off schedule. And that just won't do. I have this horrible thing about being to work on time or early. Thank you Ms. Soliz, this job requirement has lasted 9 years!

So each morning, I wake early and get myself ready about 20 minutes before the kids get up and then it's on.....

This morning it was Duchess and Murphy.

After breakfast she disappeared, and this is where I found her. Dragging Murphy out from under her bed, where she hids her Little Pet Shops. He likes to eat them. We find dismembered pet shop animals often.

So I finally got her into the livingroom where her clothes were laid out. Then returned to find this.

And this....... which after realizing that she'd wasted 20 minutes scolding the dog, we had exactly 17 minutes to leave the house exactly on time. So as cute as they were, I had to put my foot down.

Don't feel too bad for him. He's got a nicer room than most people. His own stylish carpet. A chicken, a bone and some snacks, and he's by the tv so he can watch movies all day on repeat.
It's highly unprofessional to be late to work.
Extreme measures!