Life... Health... Reviews...

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Feel your boobies

October 9th to the 16th is the 3rd Annual National Feel Your Boobies Week. Check out; you can get a free sticker and remind your friends to feel their boobies too.

Seaside Letters by Denise Hunter

On the Woman's Bookshelf

After being emotionally burned in a way that she felt she would never recover from Sabrina Kincaid built a wall around her heart that would take a lifetime to demolish. What she didn't prepare for was falling in love with someone who she believed could never love her back or forgive her past indiscretions.

Seaside Letters, A Nantucket Love Story, by Denise Hunter is an enjoyable and touching novel. From the book jacket:

"Sabrina never intended to fall in love with Tucker McCabe, the man she serves coffee to every morning at a Nantucket cafe - especially since he's unwittingly tied to a past she deeply regrets. But she's fallen hard, though she's kept her feelings a secret. When Tucker learns Sabrina is [a] research assistant... he asks Sabrina to help him with a little sleuthing of his own - locating an elusive woman he's fallen for online. ... the person he's trying to find is her."

You'll be on the edge of your seat while you try to rush through and find out if Sabrina and Tucker reveal their love for each other. Will Sabrina run away or accept love? Will Tucker tell her he knows her secret? To find that out you'll have to pick up a copy of the book.

Books I'm reading now or will be reading in the next few weeks:
  1. Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer
  2. The 30 Second Commute by Stephanie Dickison
  3. How to Marry the Wrong Guy by Anne Milford and Jennifer Gauvain, MSW, LCSW
  4. The Happiness Plan by Carmel McConnell
  5. What Happy Working Mothers Know by Cathy L. Greenberg, Ph.D. and Barrett S. Avigdor J.D.
  6. Judas by Frederick J. Ramsay
  7. Love You To Death by Shannon K. Butcher
  8. Mommy, Draw Stars on My Tummy by Martine Groeneveld, art by Brad Kunkle
  9. The Art of Meaningful Living by Christopher F. Brown, LCSW, MBA, art by John Palmer
  10. You are the Reason by Jonathan Craig
Take a moment to read a couple of other book reviews while you're here and leave me a comment about what you're reading now.

Story behind the van

Over the past month I haven't hinted about my transportation problems. I had a purple/burgundy 1999 (or was it a '98 {BLUSH}) Dodge Caravan that had about 208,000 miles on it. As with any older van it needed some work and attention. Over the past year or so I've had to put a quite a bit of money into it. Each September I have to get an emissions test in order to renew my registration. Well, at the beginning of September this year I went to get the emissions test and it didn't pass. The reading said that among the FOUR things that were wrong, there was something going on with the engine. One of the pistons wasn't firing correctly.

The cost of a repair like that? No one would know for sure until they started the work and took the engine apart. A rough estimate? More than $2,000. I only paid $3,000 for it at an auction about five years ago so that was definitely not worth it. Especially since that was only one of the repairs and there was no way to know if it would be way more than $2,000.

(I got a little impatient trying to find a picture of the other van, but you can see it okay here.)

Since, as you may have guessed, I don't have any money just laying around to get a new vehicle I figured I would be without one for awhile. I tried not to drive on the highway too much because there was no way to know if or when the engine would just give out. My mother, who lives in Maryland, didn't like the idea of my being without a vehicle with the four children anymore than I did. I knew I had no option, but to deal with it, but she and my step dad decided to contribute some money toward the purchase of another vehicle.

I called the same dealer who had gotten me (Well, "us" at the time) the last one and he gave me an idea of how much money I would need. So, I went ahead and gave him the old van to sell back at the auction so the money could be added to what my parents gave me since I had no cash to contribute.

It took three weeks before everything was finalized. (The flooding here about a week or two ago put a little kink in the works.) I am so happy to have transportation again as it was very difficult to get anything done and even get my middle daughter to school. I guess I won't get into the fact of how little resources I have here.

Here's the new van. A 2003 Chrysler Town and Country. I really like it. It needs a few things done (radio/CD replaced, visor and map lights fixed, etc.), but they're small things that I am not going to complain about. It's so good to be able to come and go as well as do for my children when I need and want to.

I really like the color of the van and the amenities. I'd like to order the key chain key thingy 'cause there aren't any locks on the passenger side, which I discovered when running from the store in the rain with the kids in a cart. LOL... It was the first day I had it and you should have seen the look on my face when I got to the van. "Hmmm..." I thought, "...guess I need to get a clicker." I chuckled with delight since it was just the beginning of getting to know my new "companion." :)

On the road again...

Friday, October 9, 2009

Vacationing at a Myrtle Beach Resort

After an overnight visit to a Georgia island last weekend, which was a much-needed and relaxing break, it would be a welcome change to have a week-long vacation and enjoy the amenities of a Myrtle Beach Resort. There are six gorgeous Myrtle Beach Resorts to choose from: Grande Shores, SeaSide, Prince Resort, Towers on the Grove, Horizon and Avista Resort.

Between the six accommodations there are a plethora of amenities. Whether you're bringing your entire family or a group of friends and colleagues there is a hotel to fit every budget and size group. Some of the amenities included at the Myrtle Beach Hotels are convenient concierge desks, business centers and facilities, multiple pools, fitness rooms, activities and dining within walking distance among other things.

After a day filled with local attractions, sun and fun, it's fabulous to return to quality accommodations and resort amenities. That's definitely something to look forward to for the next vacation.

Glimpse of the future

Miss Amareah was quite pleased with her appearance for picture day today. Remember yesterday when she tried on five dresses before she found the one she wanted to wear?

I didn't forget to get a shot of her all decked out to share with you. She looked absolutely adorable in her dress and she walked around as if she were floating on clouds. The joy on her face as she put on her slip, stockings and got her hair styled made me so happy for her. Sometimes I think it's rare that I give my children true happiness so when I see evidence in their faces it warms me.

I didn't notice 'til I posted the picture that my youngest (Miss Anna) seems to have a future as a model. She sure did strike that pose, didn't she?--->

When I slipped the dress over her head being careful not to mess up her 'do; the crinkle of the crinoline seemed to blur my vision and transport me into the future. I had a brief glimpse and a sudden feeling of helping my daughter dress for her wedding. It was a sensation that is new to me and I enjoyed a moment of something amazing to look forward to.

It was quite surprising, to say the least, because I have been living the last couple of years with a "One day at a time" mantra running through my head. I have text on my cell phone that says, "One day..." and I even have that phrase on my Facebook profile page. To think past - way past! - that is somewhat of a breakthrough for me.

Now I can imagine all of my girls at their weddings. I'm raising women (and one man)... the future. I guess it can sometimes look good. Really good.

Isn't she a beauty?

Thursday, October 8, 2009

And five dresses later...

My 4-year-old daughter has a picture day tomorrow. She informed me when she came home that her "teacher said" she should wear a dress. I wasn't buying it and tried to get her to pick out a skirt or something more appropriate so that she wouldn't have to change her clothes after the pictures.

I was overruled. My tomboy, bossy, bully daughter who plays with trucks wrestles with her brother, climbs trees, plays with bugs is the same beautiful daughter who loves her nails painted, wants to be a princess, plays with dolls and cuddles in her mommy's lap. That daughter is wearing a dress.

I told her that I didn't like the dresses in her closet so she went to look anyway. Then I remembered the fall/winter dresses that I had stored in the back of my closet at the end of last season. I was worried that they wouldn't fit. I pulled them out trying to lead her in the direction of the dress I thought she should wear and told her she'd have to try it on.

"I have to try all of them on to see which one looks nice."

Siiiggghhhh.... overruled again!

About five dresses later we had a winner.

Although I hate to admit it; trying the dresses on was an excellent idea. The two i thought would look the best on her actually didn't. Neither of us liked them. We narrowed it down to two and although I tried to steer her in the direction of a more weather appropriate one (given it's been a little warm), we agreed on one with a green velvet-like bodice and flouncy white skirt.

It looks fabulous on her. :D But I am a little worried that she is already turning into a fashion diva.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Wordless Wednesday: Sharing the beach

I've been putting up my Wordless Wednesday posts (the link goes to last week's WW) way too late in the day, but I guess it's better than not putting them up at all. Here's another shot from when we visited St. Simons Island. This little guy kept turning his head while I snapped, but I finally caught him.

5 Minutes for Mom WW participants

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

D.I.M. (don't ignore me)

To be ignored is probably one of the most painful forms of rejection. It's one thing to get closure on a situation and realize that you're not wanted or needed. It's an entirely different feeling to not know why you're being ignored or why you were rejected.

It doesn't really matter what type of relationship it is: If a parent ignores you it'll hurt; if your child ignores you it'll hurt; if it's your spouse, your lover, your significant other... whoever it is it'll hurt. I'm not talking about an oh-I'm-mad-at-you-because-you-threw-away-my-chicken-sandwich kind of being ignored. I'm talking about the days, weeks and months that can pass when a person decides that they're just done with you. Finished.

What would you do? How would you react if your spouse just up and moved out one day and never said a word to you after that? What if your father decided that he didn't want to be apart of your life. Keep in mind that you haven't argued, disagreed or done anything recently that warrants such behavior.

The pain of such a rejection is like a tearing inside the heart. You can hear the rip and feel the blood dripping out... draining from your soul, leaving you empty. Scared. Wondering. Imagine how your chest would tighten and your head would throb from the pressure of not releasing the confusion, the self-defeatist attitude would build. You'd question what you did wrong then look for things that are wrong with you.

It has to be you, right?

Some would say, "No, it's not you." But it's the you that caused the action of the rejection. Something fueled the decision, caused the riff, motivated the separation.

If everyone should take complete responsibility for what they did or didn't do then it's a matter of figuring out your responsibility. Of course that's just one woman's point of view.

Remove the pain
Stop the rain
Make me sane
Once again.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Weekly Inspiration: Change of scenery

Most of yesterday was spent mopping around as my youngest daughter would not let me get a moment to think or do any work (no surprise there). Her interruptions just fueled my desire not to sit at my desk. I know I have a full week of work, but not only couldn't I get anything accomplished I didn't feel like getting anything done either.

What is the problem? I kept wondering.

Then it dawned on me that this "problem" happens about once a month or so. I get behind on work. I get behind on visiting my favorite sites and commenting or dropping... my email backs up. I neglect paid posts. It's an ugly vicious cycle that I'd like to stop.

It dawned on me that when I start to feel this way maybe I should take my laptop, which is not really a laptop since it has to be plugged in (whole 'nother story), and hang out in the kitchen or on the couch. A relocation would require a little more concentration and a lot more of "no Anna don't touch that," but it may be just what I need to keep the momentum of working going.

If I start to get frustrated or distracted then you may find me on the couch watching TV and tapping away or in the kitchen temporarily gazing out of the window. I was thinking about lounging on my king-sized bed with laptop in tow and tricking Anna into taking a nap. Wish my house sat on the beach then I could move my home office to the deck each day and get inspiration and relaxation from the ocean - wishful thinking.

That is what's inspiring me this week. What's inspiring you? To read more or to share your own, head on over to Maternal Spark.

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Sunday, October 4, 2009

What was I thinking?

This weekend I went to Amber's campus, about two hours from home, and picked her up. From there we drove another hour to her Daddy Michael's place to spend the weekend hanging out, chilling, watching TV and whatnot.

When we arrived we had a little discussion about what time we would be leaving today. I said early afternoon. It's now almost 4:30 p.m. I should have known that would happen. We never leave here when we say we are... we get all relaxed and lazy.

It's good for us both though. Amber has been studying hard (she even cracked open the books this weekend) and I've been "mommying" and working hard. Now that we're dressed it'll take a little time to get outta the house. We'll load up the car with more than we came with. I'll drive her back to campus, after I take her to the grocery store and then make the two-hour drive back home.

It was a good weekend - even if it'll be about 10 or so when I get back. :-) It was worth it to spend time with my best friend and my biggest baby.

Hope you had a good weekend as well.
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