Thursday, October 31, 2013

Hot Six By Janet Evanovich #bookreview

2013 is just 2 short months away from being over (how is that possible?)  Which means I have 2 months to read 4 books to meet my 13 books in 2013 goal.  I am not sure I will make it but I am going to try!!  

For my 9th book I read:
Hot Six
(Stephanie Plum Series #6)
By Janet Evanovich

My review:
So Stephanie might not be good at being a Bounty Hunter but she sure does know how to crash a Star Trek party, put a dead guy in a lawn chair, get a dog to poop in her enemy's car, and have Grandma M get her drivers license ALL while 2 amazing men are fawning for her, kissing her, wanting her.  What a life! 
Hot Six might be my favorite Plum book yet.  The story line was great!  Stephanie found her way out of danger by kicking through a wall and did it with skill.   I find myself seeing Stephanie grow into her role as a Bounty Hunter...maybe she is getting a little better??  Just a little though.  
Marriage came up in Hot Six too...ummmm which man?  
So much going on with Stephanie, Ranger and Joe.  Such a tangled mess.    
My recommendations:
Read all of these books.  Evanovich makes you feel like you personally know these characters.  I cannot put the books down!  If you need gift ideas for the reader in your life - pick these up!  They will love them!  I promise!!
They are a little raunchy so don't give them to Grandma unless she is like Grandma M in the books!  ;)
My rating:

Yup 5 Cupcakes!  It is that good!  So eat it up and get to reading!

What am I reading now?
Seven Up
(Stephanie Plum Series #7)
By Janet Evanovich

What are you reading?  
What books are on your Christmas List?


Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Halloween Meets Toy Story

Wow!  We did a lot of early Halloween Celebrating last weekend.  It was a ton of fun and I know that both kids had a great time.  Ready for LOTS of pictures of my adorable kiddos dressed up???  

Yeah I thought so!!

This year Jude picked out our costumes so we obliged.  It is actually a really fun theme...thanks Jude!!
Meet Ham, Jessie and Buzz LightYear.  We are all ready for Boo at the Zoo at the Denver Zoo!  This has become a family tradition for us so we were really excited for nice weather!
The best part about Boo at the Zoo is that we still get to visit the animals AND get candy!  You have to wonder what these animals think about all these people watching them in costumes!  
Teagan er I am Jessie playing the drums and not letting go of her Trick or Treat bucket!  She is so funny.  She just held onto her bucket the whole time.  She knew what she was doing for sure!!  Also...check out the PINK boots! 
We got to meet up with Jude's "future girlfriend" Caroline too.  These 2 are 10 days apart and have been buddies since birth.  Too cute!!

It was a busy weekend for up Trunk or Treat at Jude's school. 

Teagan and his buddy Hayden matched!!  We didn't even plan this!  Woody and Buzz had a great time Trick or Treating together.  I love that Jude has some great friends to have fun with.  
I love this picture!!  They are checking out each other's LOOT!!  CANDY!!!
Her is Jessie holding her bucket again.  I think by this point she was exhausted and just not sure why we kept putting this silly costume on her and made her carry candy.  So cute though!
Oh yeah...I dressed up too!!  Meet Mrs. Potato Head!  I am hoping that on Halloween we can get a couple family photos as a Toy Story family.  

We love this time of the year!  

So in total we will have done 4 Trick or Treating outings by the time Halloween is over...candy for years!!!  

How many outings will your family do this year?


Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Jude's 1st School Picture!

We got Jude's 1st School Picture back and it is adorable!!

What do you think?  

I am pleasantly surprised!!  He actually smiled somewhat normal for the photographer!!  Too cute!!  He is such a little man in this picture.  

And here starts the annual school picture tradition!!  So fun!!

Jude - Preschool - 2013


Cat Health Made Easy

I am a member of the Collective Bias® Social Fabric® Community. This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias® and Sheba Cat Food.#ShebaCat #cbias #SocialFabric #ad #shop.

Meet Sophie. 
She is our Furbaby.  A very special, crazy, strong willed, loving and moody Cat that we love dearly.
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Sophie is our only Furbaby right now - recently we had to say goodbye to our first Furbaby, Pun-kin the Cat, just about 6 months ago.  It was heartbreaking.  Pun-kin was my first pet ever so that means he was the first animal I had to see get sick and then eventually need to be put down.  That feeling is horrible.
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After going through that with Pun-kin I started really focusing on how we take care of our animals.  

When we think about getting healthy as a human - what is the first thing you go to change?
If that means changing the amount you put in your mouth, how you cook it or what kind of food it is - it is a leap towards making better choices about what you put in your body.

If we are FurBaby parents we SHOULD do the same for our animals.  Sheba Cat Food is a great option and our kitties always loved getting Sheba Cat Food in their bowls!  Sophie still enjoys it!
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Sheba Cat Food makes it easy to spoil your Cats with great tasting food that they will love and will keep them happy and healthy too!  Sheba has been around for a long time and Cats know it.  Every time I open a can I hear Sophie running for the bowl.  It is Cat Food that I trust and know will be high quality food.  

One SIMPLE step to making sure that your Cats are staying on track with their health.

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Check out all of the flavors that Sophie gets!  LUCKY Lady!!  Turkey Entree is Sophie's favorite!
Not to mention the great deals Sheba offers at WALMART - right now you can log onto and find a coupon for a BUY 6 GET 1 FREE!
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Another step that we take as family to assure the health of our animals is yearly check-ups and shots at the Vet.  While it seems expensive I make sure I remind myself that we do the same thing for ourselves and our children.  A simple trip to the Vet can detect a disease or problem before it is too late.  Animals cannot talk for themselves so we as caretakers can take them on a short road trip every year just to get a look over.

When I get cuddles from this kitty I remember how important health is for our animals.  

Another decision we have made as a family for our Cat is to only have Sophie indoors.  Some Cats want to be outside, Miss Sophie has no desire to venture out...probably because she knows how good she has it!!  Smart Cat!

With these small and simple steps my husband and I know we are helping our Cat have the best life she could possibly have.  

Great Cat Food from Sheba, Vet Visits and Hanging Inside!  
What a life!!

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Our Sophie and Our Pun-kin...miss you buddy!  

Keep your Cat healthy and happy.  Treat her like you should be treating your body and your child's body!  These little animals depend on you to make healthy choices for them. 


Monday, October 28, 2013

Teagan's 1 Year Stats

12 Months Old!!  One Year!!!  

This is one happy little lady!
We went to the doctor on Friday and we found out that Teagan is happy and healthy - only the best thing a parent can ask and hope for!  

The check up went well, the poor girl had to have 6 shots though!  Yikes!  SIX!!  She took them like a pro and really told that nurse she wasn't happy!  

Teagan's 12 Month Stats:
Weight:  21 pounds and 7 ounces (71%)
Height:  30 1/2 inches (89%)

She is just like her brother.  TALL!!!  

Things I do not want to forget:
~WALKING!  At 11 months and 2 weeks you were walking every where!!
~Eating like crazy!  Trying everything we are eating!  FINALLY!
~Loves giving kisses to everyone and everything!!
~Reading like a pro - you will sit and "read" your books.  Adorable!
~You got to visit with Grandma and Grandpa from Arizona.
~You are in 12-18 months clothes because you need the longer pants!
~Size 3 diapers.
~Finally sleeping in your crib nightly!!  10pm-5am most nights!  I will take it!  THANK YOU!
~Happy.  You are always smiling and playing.  Such a fun laid back little lady!

What are we focusing on now?
~Switching to COWS milk - we will be doing 2%.  I am nervous because Teagan has always had "Poop" issues.  So we will see.
~Switching to a straw or sippy cup.  We will see which kind you want.
~Sleep!  Still working on the crib and naps!  Going to be an ongoing battle I think.  


Personalized Superhero Capes from Everfan & Giveaway

Does anyone else have a Superhero living with them?  Do you find yourself wondering if the floor is going to cave in because of that Superhero running down the hall?  Do you have to address your child by a different name other than their own?  Well I am not sure what you answered YES to but I answer YES to all of those questions...daily!
Everfan Superhero Cape
Jude is simply ALL boy.  That is all there is to it.  He loves the Superhero play, which really makes me interested in the human brain.  Why?  Well I truly believe there is something hard wired in boys to be all Superhero.  We never let Jude watch anything Superhero and even with out seeing the movies, books, cartoons, ect he has turned into a Superhero Fan!  It is pretty fun to watch!
Everfan Superhero Cape
Meet our Superhero.  Any name suggestions?  Jude cannot decide.  When I opened this Personalized Superhero Cape from Everfan Jude immediately turned into a Superhero.  Running down the hallway and playing the Good Guy game he loves.  Adding the cape, gloves and mask made his imagination run wild!
Everfan Superhero Cape
Everfan creates high quality dress up Capes for kids and adults of all ages. I specifically chose a "J" personalized Cape because we can never find JUDE things so this would be a special toy for him.  I was also surprised to see some of the other styles that Everfan has.  Are you a big College Sports Team fan?  They even have Collegiate Capes for adults...hello tailgating attire!!  
Everfan Superhero Cape
Look at this Superhero!!  Everfan is a great company and I really like that they truly understand the power of a child's imagination.  All of their Capes for kids fit most 3-8 year olds and are made with high quality polyester satin.  
Everfan Superhero Cape
Now that Jude has this Cape.  We know that we will be playing dress up and Superheros a lot in our house.  I love it!!  We also have Teagan's future Superhero Cape picked out...
Everfan Superhero Cape
HA!!  Perfect right??  Cannot wait!  She certainly is the all powerful Cupcake Queen in our house!!
Everfan Superhero Cape
Jude has something to tell you.  GIVEAWAY TIME!!!

Everfan is giving one of my readers the gift of imagination!  One reader will be given a free Cape of their choice.  How exciting!! Thank you Everfan.  

All you have to do if fill out the rafflecopter form below to enter.  Good luck!!

Sorry Canadian fans...but this is open to US addresses only.  :o(  

Rafflecopter Form: 

Disclosure:  Jude was given his Superhero Cape free of charge in return for our honest opinions and review.  


Friday, October 25, 2013

Update on Jeremy - Ulcerative Colitis

Wow.  What a long almost 11 months.  For those of you who missed what is going on with my husband Jeremy let me start from the beginning.  
In December 2012 it was decided that my husband would have a MAJOR surgery to remove his entire colon due to severe and active Ulcerative Colitis.  It was a scary decision but it had to be done.

  The surgery took place on January 9th 2013.  We were hopeful that the surgery would bring health and healing in the new year.    

In many ways there has been a ton of healing and health but in other ways we as a family have been dealing with a whole other bag of issues.  The surgery itself went just as planned.  Jeremy has adjusted to the "bag" amazingly...better than I know I could, however there is one LAST wound that just won't heal!  That wound is the wound on his back end...lovely right?  Because this wound won't heal he has had to go to the doctor for daily packings since he returned to work and had the home nurse visits cancelled.  This has brought a lot of stress to our family and Jeremy due to him missing work for at least an hour every day and also the daily co-pays we are racking up.  So depressing on so many levels.  

So here we are.  Almost November and he is STILL dealing with this wound.  Now what?  His Ostomy Surgeon is at a loss as to why it won't heal...there really isn't any reason for it.  So today we went to a Plastic Surgeon to talk about our options as far as Jeremy having yet another surgery.  This surgery would be a Muscle Flap surgery that would mean removing muscle from either his thigh or his abs.  We are confident that we can have it done from the thigh so that is good.  We liked this surgeon and he gave us a lot of information but before he moves forward he wants to have a conference with Jeremy's GI docs and his Ostomy Surgeon to get all of Jeremy's history.  While we are thankful for that we really hoped to have a surgery date today when we left the consult!!  Boo!  BUT it looks like this will happen before the end of the year so we will get this surgery for "FREE" because of our deductible.  That is a relief!! 

SO maybe 2014 is our year?  A year we can start with healing and health?  I am hopeful because lord knows we would love to get back to our normal lives and say goodbye to the doctor's offices!

If I can ask one thing from my readers it would be for you to send Jeremy thoughts and prayers of healing and health.  We need every thought and prayer out there. 

Once the surgery is scheduled I will update you all.  Thank you for your continuous support through our Ulcerative Colitis journey.  


What to Wear for Holiday Photos

In November we will be having our family pictures taken by one of my friends.  I cannot wait to get some great pictures of us all and start creating our Christmas Card.  I already have our card picked out from!  Love it!!

So now the question is....

What are we going to wear??

First up, is Jude.  We are going pretty traditional and BOY!  Nice straight leg dark washed Jeans, black dress shoes and a fun plaid black and white button down shirt.  I think our little man will look pretty handsome!!
Jude's Clothes are from The Children's Place

 Teagan will be pretty in PINK and black to tie into Jude's black and white shirt.  This dress is perfect for winter.  Dressy not TOO dressy.  The cardigan is adorable and Love this deep pink color with black.  Great for photos!!  I cannot wait to buy her a pair of the black Mary Jane shoes!!  EEEK!!  And let's hope she keeps this adorable headband on!!
Teagan's Clothes are from The Children's Place. 

Next up...Mom and Dad.  I think it is harder for me to choose our outfits than the kiddos.  But here is what I am thinking.  We are on a budget so we are going to have to be thrifty with our clothes this year!

I am thinking a nice dark grey dress shirt for Jeremy to tie into Jude's shirt and Teagan's dress.  Then to add a pop of color I will wear a nice deep pink shirt.  Both of us will wear dark jeans or black pants.  Simple yet stunning. 
Jeremy's shirt is from Old Navy.
Censie's shirt is from Maurices.

Okay, that is the Family Picture Plan!  

Thoughts?  I cannot wait to see everyone's Family Pictures - best part about Holiday Cards!!


Thursday, October 24, 2013

Interval training: is it as good for you as they say?

Interval training has become increasingly popular, with everyone from amateur fitness enthusiasts to top athletes incorporating the technique into their workouts for better results. But is it really as good for you as everyone says?

What exactly is interval training?         
Interval training combines stretches of high-intensity exercise with low-intensity recovery periods. It's all about controlling the lactic acid produced by your body while exercising. During high-intensity periods of exercise, lactic acid builds up in your muscles faster than it can be disposed of. When it reaches a certain level, known as the anaerobic threshold, you feel an unpleasant burning sensation. The idea behind interval training is to repeatedly push yourself over your anaerobic threshold during the high-intensity periods so your body gets better at processing the lactic acid, meaning you'll be able to train harder for longer periods of time.

What are the positives?
Performed regularly interval training will increase your speed, but there are also plenty of health benefits. As with other types of mid-intensity exercise, interval training can lower your risk of type 2 diabetes, stroke, heart disease, and some forms of cancer. You will also burn more calories than you would with a regular workout. Some argue that interval training boosts your metabolism, meaning that your body will continue to burn fat even after you’ve finished exercising – potentially for up to 48 hours! Besides these benefits, interval training is great for those who are short on time: according to a Canadian study, the same health benefits can be achieved during six 20-minute interval training sessions as ten hours of continuous-approach exercise over two weeks.

Sounds good to me – are there any negatives?
Interval training is not for everyone. High intensity training can worsen existing joint problems, especially around the knees and ankles. Those with heart problems should also consult their doctor before attempting interval training.

Even for the fit and healthy, the intense nature of the exercise means it’s easy to overdo it, causing delayed onset of muscle soreness (DOMS), reduced performance, and even injuries, all of which can have a negative impact on your training. Make sure you have a break between sessions of at least 24 hours to allow your body to recover fully.

Interval training is extremely tough and the sensation of lactic acid build-up can be painful, so you might need a little extra motivation. It’s recommended that you improve your fitness with gradually with continuous cardiovascular workouts before attempting interval training – you’ll be more disciplined and therefore more likely to stick to it.

So, should you try interval training?             

As long as you’re reasonably fit and don’t have any existing joint or heart problems, interval training is a great idea for boosting your fitness level. Treat yourself to some new Adidas Trainers from K&CO, load up your exercise playlist, and hit the streets!

This is a guest post not written by me.  


Create Family Moments with JELL-O JIGGLERS #JELLOHalloween

Well it is that time of the year.  Time to create treats and snacks in the kitchen for the upcoming holidays.  The first one is one of my favorite holidays - HALLOWEEN!!!  Something that I am really looking forward to now that Jude is older is making memories in the kitchen.  I have recently found a love for baking and cooking and trying new recipes which is great for us as a family, especially when Jude wants to help.  

I was trying to find a fun weekend craft or recipe for Halloween and I found some great recipes for JELL-O JIGGLERS.  I was very excited to try the MMMMonster JIGGLERS but after I showed Jude, he told me they were too scary.  Well okay we went a different route.  A route that wasn't crazy creative but it was crazy fun and messy!  What 3 year old doesn't love that???  

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So the fun began!  Jude was telling our neighbor all about our spooky JIGGLER treats that were being made!  This meant we had to share our creations when they were done - Lucky neighbor right??

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I decided to make this more of a craft than a recipe.  I broke out some purple, green, black and orange frosting and let the creative juices flow.  Jude had a great time decorating his JELL-O JIGGLERS.  Not to mention he loved sneaking bites of his bats, pumpkins, ghosts and spiders!  

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I think my favorite one was the spider!  Hehehe!  Watch out!!  Spider JELL-O JIGGLERS!!!

Why not make this a family tradition just like decorating Christmas Cookies in December.  These JELL-O JIGGLERS are easy to make and yummy but the shapes really make me feel like we jumped right into the Halloween spirit just right.  Perfect weekend activity for all ages.  One more memory and tradition started.  I love that.  Brings a smile to my face.  

So does this:
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I think most of the frosting ended up on his face, hands and arms.  Oh well!  He was so happy when he finally got to eat one of his finished master pieces!  

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Check out what the neighbors are getting!  A plate full of Halloween Spiders and Pumpkins!  Yummy!!

Family Moments can be created just as easily as a JELL-O JIGGLER can be decorated!  Enjoy and jump in!

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.


Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Harvest Crafts for Preschoolers

We are trying out some great crafts I found on Pinterest for Harvest/Thanksgiving season.  I needed something fun and festive for Jude to get into.  We have tried a couple of these and have had a great time making Fall decorations for our home!

Harvest Crafts for Preschoolers:

If you make any of these please let me know how it goes!  Next we are going to tackle the Pine Cone Turkeys - JUDE LOVES PINE CONES!!  Should be fun!

Happy creating!!


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