Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Charming Blog Award

Okay, sweet, funny, Charming Marcy has bestowed the Charming Blog Award to my little blog. The Charming Blog Award has no 'button' to go along with it, so don't look for one. This award is bestowed to blogs that are exceedingly charming!

"This is how the award works: This award is bestowed on to blogs that are exceedingly charming. These kind bloggers aim to find and be friends. They are not interested in self-aggrandizement. Our hope is that when the ribbons of these prizes are cut, even more friendships are propagated. Please give more attention to these writers. Deliver this award to eight bloggers who must choose eight more and include this cleverly-written text into the body of their award."The award also asks that I tell 7 "random" things about myself. "

My goodness, seven more things about myself.
Okay, here goes:

1. I wear a size nine shoe (hint-hint, Marcy!).

2. I started smoking the summer before seventh grade.

3. I quit smoking when I found out I was expecting my first baby.

4. I literally laugh out loud when I am reading some posts on other blogs.

5. I really sob sometimes when I am reading some posts on other blogs.

6. I pray when I am reading some posts on other blogs.

7. I wish junk food was good for you (okay, that was idiotic, I promise I don't pray for nonsense like that, but I do wish for it!).

Now I am supposed to pass this award on to eight other blogs, but I don't want to push anyone past their comfort zone, and I don't really know for sure who wants it and who doesn't (or who already might be receiving it this very moment!), so I'll mention some names and some blogs that I find immensely charming, and I hope they want this award. If you do not, pretend you never stopped here, that will be fine, I won't alert the Award Police (but watch out for that Marcy, because I think she'll rat you out!).

The One! The Only! Jerelene @ Jerlene's Journal

The Most Charming Diana @ Welcome To My World

The Very Endearing Sandy @ beachgirl77

The Ever Informative Jackie @ Teacher's Pet

And Two Women Who Fit The Title of 'Hostess With The Mostest'
Carol @ Charli and Me
and also
Sheila @ The Quintessential Magpie

Reason, Season, or Lifetime ~ I Am So Grateful

We come from all walks of life, we are different ages, we are at different stages in life, we come from different financial situations, different backgrounds, and we are spread all over the country, it certainly seems like we don’t have all that much in common, and yet we are drawn together, an unseen connection that bonds us one to the other. We share our deepest most feelings, we read each other’s hearts, we support, we cajole, we entertain, we amuse, we commiserate, we console, we suggest, we advise, we seek opinions, we share our beliefs, and we hold each other up in prayer.

There are cynics who feel that those of us who blog cannot really ever be true friends. The skeptics say that there is too much potential for bloggers to portray themselves falsely, and while I’m sure there is a potential for misleading, I don’t think I’ve come across it yet. I haven’t seen anyone ‘put on airs’, I haven’t met anyone boastful, in fact, I’ve only seen people with a true concern and respect for others. I haven’t come across one person who ‘toots their own horn’ so to speak.

If you look at the definition of a friend and friendship you will find the following words:
Attachment, Relationship, Bond, Alliance, Link, Association, Tie, Affection, Harmony, Goodwill, Closeness, Rapport, Fondness, Companionship, Comradeship, Love, Regard

And Webster defines friendship as:
One attached to another by affection or esteem

It seems to me based on those definitions that we are friends indeed.
And I feel that we may even have an added advantage in that we don’t have all the trappings of material things to bind us nor to separate us. There was absolutely nothing physical that drew us one to the other, it was more spiritual, it was more heart and mind that brought us together. Do you believe in Divine Providence? I do. Do you think God has a Hand in collecting this group together? I do.

Now we may or may not be lifelong friends, but I don’t think that really matters all that much. We are here for each other now. And now is really all that counts.
I recall reading a concept about friends being drawn together sometimes for a reason, sometimes for a season, and sometimes for a lifetime.

I tried looking it up to give credit to the creator of this inspired idea but I came across quite a few names, so I’m posting the three names that came up most often so as to try to give credit where credit is due:
Alvin C. Romer
Jean Dominque Martin
Valerie Reiss (Holistic Living)

Well, my friends, for however long or short the span may be that you have entered my life and remain here, I am grateful for the reason, I am grateful for the season, and in my heart this friendship will be carried for a lifetime.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Another Award! This Blogging Is Fun!

I have been given the honor of the Premio Meme Award by Jackie, her blog is great and filled with beautiful pictures and fun facts!

The rules for accepting this award are simple:
List seven facts about myself.
Pass the award on to seven other blogs.

Seven facts:
1. A piece of junk that someone spots in the garbage and retrieves for me because they think I will like it, is equal in value to me (probably more, to tell the truth) as someone giving me a very expensive gift.

2. I am not smart. School was always a struggle for me. I was left back in first grade, I had barely passing grades all through the rest of elementary school and high school, I was happy to graduate high school and had no ambition to further my education.

3. I have had only three jobs in my whole life. I worked in the meat department of a supermarket in my teen years. I graduated high school on a Friday night, and Monday morning I went to work for McCall's Magazine in their Advertising Dept. processing orders in the morning and helping with the lay-out in the afternoons. I only worked there about two years (until a month before my first baby was born) but I loved it!
When my youngest son was about twelve I was offered a job as a teacher's aide in a Kindergarten classroom (I did that for about seven years). That was the most fun ever!

4. I have always wanted to work in a Shabby Chic type store.

5. I have never felt that I needed a job title or a career to define myself and I feel sorry for people who do. While I do think careers are an accomplishment, and definitely something to be admired, I don't think anymore of a doctor or a lawyer than I do of the people that may clean their offices, or clean their operating rooms. In fact, I hold the people who clean up after the professionals in higher esteem (I'm a snob that way).

6. I would rather eat 'junk' food than 'healthy' food.

7. The morning that my first son was born I had to admit to my obstetrician that my breakfast was a bowl of Cocoa Puffs. I remember the conversation like it was yesterday (it was over thirty-five years ago!):
Dr. "Eileen, did you have breakfast this morning?"
Me "Yes, I did."
Dr. "Was it a big breakfast?"
Me "I had a bowl of cereal."
Dr. "Was it hot cereal or cold cereal?"
Me "It was cold cereal."
Dr. "And what brand was it?"
Me "Cocoa Puffs."
Dr. "Cocoa what?" (sounding stunned)
Me "Cocoa Puffs"
Dr. "What is that? Some type of children's cereal?" (sounding incredulous)
Me "Yes, it's a kid's cereal."
Dr. "Well, let's try to eat better." (this time with a little smile on his face)
I don't eat Cocoa Puffs anymore, but I do prefer a bowl of cold cereal for breakfast every morning (only now it's Life Cereal I eat, every morning).

Now, I'd like to pass this award on to the following blogs: (If you already have it, well, now you have two! And only if you want it, if not, no hard feelings.)

Rebecca at The Gate's Post

Marcy at Blessings Each Day

Teresa at Do The Write Thing

Bernie at On My Own

Wanda at Moments of Mine

Linda at Been There Done That

Jerelene at Jerelene's Journal

Whew! I'm done posting! If you don't know a lot about me by now, I don't know how much more I can share! Between this award post and Jerelene's tag below I unloaded a lot!

Tagged By Jerelene ~ Twenty Favorites

1. Color ~ Pink!

2. Dessert ~ Creme Brulee

3. Smell ~ Cinnamon and the beach!

4. Flower ~ Tulips (any color) and Yellow Roses

5. Animal ~ Giraffe

6. Month ~ May (Ray & I were married in May!)

7. Beverage ~ Coffee (hot or iced)

8. Shoes ~ Flip Flops for Summer, Clogs for the rest of the year

9. Snack ~ Chex Mix

1o. Song ~ Unchained Melody (it was our Wedding Song)

11. Book ~ Gone With The Wind

12. Fruit ~ Watermelon

13. Hairstyle ~ (I'm dating myself here, but...) Teased top, and flip on the bottom like Marlo Thomas wore in the show "That Girl"!

14. Clothing ~ Jeans

15. Store To Buy Clothes ~ no favorite store, I like to order from Land's End and L.L. Bean

16. Season ~ Fall

17. Hobby ~ Blogging!

18. Collection ~ Perfumes!

19. Movie ~ Gone With The Wind

20. Restaurant ~ Mia Pia (in Manhattan) and a few favorite neighborhood ones.

Okay, readers, consider yourselves 'tagged' ~ your turn!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

And The Winner Is...

...well, not to keep you in suspense but things did not go as planned.
First of all, Jayden's first time in the pool left him somewhat water/swimming pool shy! He was afraid at first to take off his life jacket, and I was anxious to get on with it, so when I threw the diving sticks into the pool Jayden just pointed to one and told 'Paw' to dive for it, Ray retrieved it and handed it off to Jayden. Oh, and there is no video because Ray said he was not going to allow us to film a 'whale dive' as he put it! I don't blame him, I wouldn't want anyone filming me in my bathing suit either!

So, on with the picture show ~

Before they could get in the pool they first had to install the ladder:

Then Jayden checked the pool temperature (Seventy-eight, too cold for Grandma!)

Then Jayden waited patiently (NOT!) by the side of the pool for Umma to write everyone's name on the diving sticks:

Okay, finally finished! Time to get wet!

Brrrr! It's cold!

Take a little swim and try to warm up!

There go the diving sticks!

Everyone is sitting at the bottom of the pool ~ here we go!


Let's see!

Turn it around!

And the winner is...

...drum roll please....


Jerelene, if you click on my email you can let me know where you want your winnings sent to!

And for all the others who left me comments, I have a little something for you too, if you email me I'll send it to you. I am working on a few projects, and as I finish them I will mail them out. And I didn't forget that some of you wanted the beach glass!

Okay, the rest of this post is just Jayden enjoying the pool for the first time this summer! I never thought we'd have to wait until the very end of June to get use out of the pool!
And if you look in the pictures you can see what a mess the deck is again with sticks and leaves blown about from all the storms we've been having!

Oh, and after about an hour, Jayden did get braver and he took off his vest and was willing to swim without it! Oh well, I should have had more patience. (You can see where Jayden gets his 'ants in the pants' from!)

After this Jayden showered, got dressed, and had a good, long nap! Then Ray barbecued dinner for us. It was a really nice summer day!

Friday, June 26, 2009

Friday Favorites

My favorites this week are a few things my father-in-law made for us. I posted a little bit about my father-in-law on Memorial Day. Harry worked all his adult life in construction as a dock builder, but he was also very handy around the house, he used to make small pieces of furniture, and he was also a talented woodcarver.
Here is a wooden step stool Dad made for us (he actually made five of them and gave one to each of his children and their families):

And Dad also carved these two wooden chains:

Such patience, right?!

One last favorite today is my favorite boy, who keeps me smiling with his constant clowning around!

Jayden decided to cast aside his pirate sword and hop into his cousin Mia's little pink doll stroller the other night!

Practicing tying a bow with Umma's kitchen chair cushions.

The other morning while watching TV and waiting for his breakfast to be ready Jayden called to me that he was cold, I told him to go get one of his sweat jackets that were hanging on the hooks in the hall. When I came back into the living room he had taken one of my sweaters and put it on backwards and was all snuggled up in it:

Jayden decided he needed glasses to see better and took a pair of Ray's safety goggles to wear:

When I told Jayden to take the glasses off he said, "Umma, I need them, they help my fingers to snap louder!" This kid is a real character!

The above pictures of our living room were taken on days when Jayden was not around.

And on a normal day when Jayden is around to work his magic, this is the decorating theme.......

...almost never do the back cushions stay on the love seat, they slowly make their way to the front of the love seat and then to the floor, and there is always a tent being built somewhere!

I often think about how much Ray's Dad would have enjoyed Jayden and his antics!

Weekend Forecast:
Saturday & Sunday are going to be devoted to finishing painting the last wall in the living room, and (hopefully!) also painting the dining room, but I have a feeling if the weather is as nice as is promised, the pool and swimming will win out over painting the dining room!
Have a great weekend everyone!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

100 And Counting

While blogging and visiting the friends that I admire most
I almost didn't notice that coming very soon would be my hundredth post

But when Congratulating dear friend Marcy as she reached that peak
I checked and saw that mine would be within the coming week

So today I am celebrating my one hundredth post
With a give-away too that I'd like to host

A basket of goodies for you to enjoy
It's more for a girl than it is for a boy

Even though it contains items that more reflect me
I hope they are things that will bring you some glee

It's all wrapped up, it's ready and waiting
And it will be yours just for the taking

It is one thing old, and it is one thing new
And (of course) one thing pink, along with one thing blue

Now if you will be so dear
Please leave a comment here

And then onto some coins your names will go
And then into the pool, your names I will throw

My little friend Jayden will then take a swim
The coin he retrieves will be the one to win!

(Hey! Today should have been Wordful Wednesday with this poem here!)

Okay, enough with the bad rhyming. It's been my pleasure to blog along with all of you! You have all enriched my life so much with your witty jokes, and your thoughtful posts, and your kind and caring comments. It would be fun to host a party for you all, to give back to you in some small measure, but instead I'll just have to settle for this little give away.

I'm not very creative when it comes to the 'fun and games', so I'm going to leave that to our Dear, Fun-Loving, Always-Makes-Us-Smile Marcy, and I'm going to do something very boring and just ask you to be your usual kind selves, leave me a comment, and I will write your names on some coins, and then throw those coins into the pool and have Jayden pick the winner!
We might have to wait a little while though for the weather to start cooperating, I don't want the poor kid to get hypothermia! And I'll try to record and post a video of it all too!

Something old ~ A Vintage Irish Burmel Linen Handkerchief (no! It's never been used!)

Something new ~ A Scented Candle Tin (Fresh Ivy Vine)

Something pink ~ A Small Candy Dish

Something blue ~ A Little Sack of Blue Beach Glass in a Blue Glass

I purchased most of these things from one of my favorite stores ~ Anthropologie (except for of course the Irish vintage hankie and the beach glass!). I love the uniqueness of this store. I wanted to get pictures of the inside of it, but they frown upon picture-taking inside the store, so I just snapped the outside. This particular one is in a shopping mall, the other one I shop at actually has a much nicer facade.

I love the fact that this store uses vintage looking tables and cupboards to display their 'vintage-like' inventory. I like the way they stack the dishes on the tables, just as if they had been recently washed and dried and waiting their turn to be put back into Grandma's cupboard, and they have vintage looking aprons and dish towels hanging on hooks nearby. It's like taking a trip back into my childhood.
Shopping Anthropologie is not as much fun as shopping thrift shops and/or flea markets, but it's the next best thing!

I hope you enjoy the things I've chosen for you as much as I've enjoyed choosing them! And I'm going to try to add something a little more personal after I know who I'm sending this to!

My heartfelt thanks to you all, to those who have included me in your worlds and who have been kind enough to visit me in mine.

Good luck to everyone!
I'll have Jayden do the honors as soon as the pool water is warm enough and I'll post it right after!