Thursday, November 20, 2008

Meme Game - a fun way to kill some time

A friend recently sent me this little game, which I found highly amusing (and a colossal waste of time, which made it all the more fun). Since I went through the trouble to do this, just thought I'd share with you in case you are looking for something to do to beat the cold. Here's how it works...

The concept:
A. Type your answer to each of the questions below into the search engine. (Or any other image search you like. Some have had some issues using Flickr with a mac.)
B. Using only the first page of results, pick an image.
C. Copy and paste each of the URLs for the images into the Mosaic Maker at Set your columns to 3 and rows to 4.

The Questions:
1. What is your first name? (Or try typing in an obscure nickname)
2. What is your favorite food?
3. What school did you go to?
4. What is your favorite color?
5. Who is your celebrity crush?
6. Favorite drink?
7. Dream vacation?
8. Favorite dessert?
9. What you want to be when you grow up?
10. What do you love most in life?
11. One Word to describe you.
12. Your heart & soul.

If you give the Meme Game a try, let me know! :)

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

TWILIGHT - The Book Series and The Movie

If you've been following my blog, you know that I've been reading the Twilight series by Stephenie Meyer. And unless you've been living under a rock, you've probably heard that there's been a lot of hype about this series. I didn't want to read it at first - after all, it's about vampires - but my moms group book club picked it and after everyone started raving about it, I got curious. It wasn't scary at all (as I thought it would be) but was a true love story with a little twist of something interesting to it. I just finished the 4th book (most people were so addicted that they read all 4 books in the span of a week) but I was so hooked that I didn't want it to end so I really took my time with the last two books. In any case, I'm sad to be done - I will miss the characters - but elated to have read and fell in love with them all. I'm also thrilled because the movie for this first book (Twilight) comes out on Friday and a group of us that read the books together are going to go see it. I can't wait! Let me also remind you that these are "young adult" books so by definition, I am way too old to be reading them, but it seems there is as much of a cult following among the 20/30 somethings as there are among the teeny boppers. Maybe even more so... So if you haven't read these books yet, go get them! And go see the movie! I heard that in pre sales of movie tickets they have already made their money back on this movie. I can't wait!! Have fun escaping life for awhile!!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Tuesday's Tips: Be on the lookout for holiday deals

Every year it seems like Christmas comes earlier and earlier. This year I saw my first Christmas stuff in stores in August, alongside the back-to-school stuff. AUGUST. 4 MONTHS BEFORE CHRISTMAS! This used to really annoy me - let me enjoy all the other holidays first! - but this year, it seems just right. I want to get things done early. I always say that and rarely do it but with toddler in tow, holiday shopping can be a nightmare. Hence comes the beauty of online shopping. Not only do you avoid the stores but you probably also save a few bucks because you aren't tempted by the 30 other "cute" things on the way to the register. Online shopping is also wonderful for those out-of-town friends and relatives - you'd have to send it to them anyways so save yourself the hassle of wrapping & packaging it (and visiting the dreaded Post Office) and have gifts sent directly. How wonderful! Several sites will also be doing free shipping promotions between now and the big day. Lots of stores and websites also do amazing deals right now where you can really get a good bang for your buck. So keep your eyes open, list in hand, and get shopping. I am hoping to get a lot of my shopping done early so I have time for my favorite holiday activity - baking. I bake lots of yummies for friends and neighbors (and maybe snitch a few bites myself!) I've not really started too much on my shopping yet (though I have pretty good ideas what I am getting everyone) but we've already done Olive's picture with Santa, working on our Christmas cards, and researching deals. It's tough work, but somebody's gotta do it! The first snow flurries hit here this morning and it's making me even more in the Christmas spirit. So shop early and remember to save some gifts, food, etc. for those who need it this season. They should be on your list too.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Rainy Day Activities

Being born and raised in the Sunshine State, I have very little appreciation for endless gloomy, rainy days. Every once in awhile it is nice but after awhile, it gets old.

On top of that, I have a toddler with the activity level of a Mexican jumping bean and between the two of us, we get a little stir crazy so I've been trying to think of some fun indoor activities for us during these seemingly endless gloomy days. Here are a few ideas I've come up with:

1. Good old-fashioned coloring book coloring

2. Coloring printables - find your kids' favorite characters and print them out for free at or They also have lots of fun craft ideas. We now have a Dora Thanksgiving placemat colored oh-so-prettily in blue. You can also find other printables at

3. Online games at,, and

4. Finger painting, watercolor painting, or better yet - Color Wonder painting

5. Arts & crafts projects - this can be as simple as sticking stickers on a piece of paper to something more elaborate for older kids. You can draw a scene of something and have the kid put stickers/decorations/color in areas you specify for them (ie, put a sticker of a flower OUTSIDE of the house). Color the dog's ears brown. etc. etc. For kids who know their numbers or letters, you can do color by number.

6. Thanksgiving craft idea - Tom the Turkey - trace your child's hand on construction paper, have them help you cut it out, then decorate with feathers or other scraps of colorful construction paper

7. Read some books together.

8. Cut out pictures from old magazines and make a collage of your child's favorite things. Then send to Grandma for an early Christmas gift (bonus: saves time and money at the store!)

9. Bake cookies or cupcakes together - be sure to check out the book Pinkalicious by Victoria Kann & Elizabeth Kann beforehand so the kids will be forewarned not to eat too many cupcakes ;)

10. Build a fort.

11. Hide and seek

12. Scavenger hunt

13. Build an indoor obstacle course.

14. Turn up the music and DANCE!

15. Help Mommy fold the laundry. Oops, how did that one get in there? Well it's a good chance to catch up on that too ;)

16. If all else fails, grab your favorite animated movie (ie, the one that annoys you the least), a bowl of popcorn, and curl up on the couch and have a quiet afternoon snuggling together.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

FREEBIE!!! GIVEAWAY!!! over at Little Pink Pansy

I'm doing a giveaway over at my other blog - little pink pansy. I'm giving away a set of beautiful hand-embroidered linen napkins with assorted bird styles. They are beautiful and will make a great gift for a teacher, neighbor, or friend. Enter now - contest ends on Monday, November 17th!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Olive's 1st Haircut

Yesterday Dennis had the day off work for Veteran's Day. We decided to take Olive to get her first haircut. Anticipating a lot of kicking and screaming, we thought it might be easier if we all went together. Boy were we wrong! She was amazing! She even let them wash and blow dry her hair! She sat still and quiet and was happy as could be. We took her to Cartoon Cuts in our mall and the lady was fast, efficient, and friendly. At each station, they also had a TV playing some kid favorites - at our station it was Diego, next door was Dora. They also had some Dum-Dum lollipops. It was definitely a win-win for us! Olive did fantastic! We were both surprised. When she was finished, the stylist gave her a "First Haircut Certificate" and saved a lock of her hair for us. While I was so sad to have the first haircut, Olive's hair had gotten quite unruly. While we did take off some length, it looks much more manageable and classy now. I am including some before and after pictures for your entertainment. If you live in Virginia, Maryland, Florida, Illinois, Texas, or Puerto Rico, see if there is a Cartoon Cuts near you - I HIGHLY recommend it!

BEFORE - Long and straggly
Getting it washed at the salon

AFTER - Cute as a button

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Tuesday's Tips: GO VOTE!!!!

Whether you are an Obama Mama or a McCain Maverick, make sure you hit the polls today!! Each vote counts and there is nothing more important than having your voice heard. If you don't vote today, you have no right to complain about the laws and changes that are made. I am attaching an excerpt from an email I recently received about Women and the Vote. The images are not included but here's the really makes you appreciate the privileges we have now. So even if your line is long and your patience short, people fought really hard for the vote and women and minorities have not always had this option so exercise your voice and hit the polls!! Then post a comment and let me know you went (and feel free to give a shout out for your favorite candidate!) Either way, history is being made in this election - we will either have the first female in the administration or the first minority - in that sense, I think we win both ways.


This is the story of our Grandmothers and Great-grandmothers; they lived only 90 years ago. Remember, it was not until 1920
that women were granted the right to go to the polls and vote.
The women were innocent and defenseless, but they were jailed nonetheless for picketing the White House, carrying signs asking for the vote.
And by the end of the night, they were barely alive. Forty prison guards wielding clubs and their warden's blessing went on a rampage against the 33 women wrongly convicted of 'obstructing sidewalk traffic.' They beat Lucy Burns, chained her hands to the cell bars above her head and left her hanging for the night, bleeding and gasping for air.
They hurled Dora Lewis into a dark cell, smashed her head against an iron bed and knocked her out cold. Her cellmate, Alice Cosu, thought Lewis was dead and suffered a heart attack. Additional affidavits describe the guards grabbing, dragging, beating, choking, slamming, pinching, twisting and kicking the women.Thus unfolded the 'Night of Terror' on Nov. 15, 1917, when the warden at the Occoquan Workhouse in Virginia ordered his guards to teach a lesson to the suffragists imprisoned there because they dared to picket Woodrow Wilson's White House for the right to vote. For weeks, the women's only water came from an open pail. Their food--all of it colorless slop--was infested with worms. When one of the leaders, Alice Paul, embarked on a hunger strike, they tied her to a chair, forced a tube down her throat and poured liquid into her until she vomited. She was tortured like this for weeks until word was smuggled out to the press.
So, refresh my memory. Some women won't vote this year because- -why, exactly? We have carpool duties? We have to get to work? Our vote doesn't matter? It's raining?Last week, I went to a sparsely attended screening of HBO's new movie 'Iron Jawed Angels.' It is a graphic depiction of the battle these women waged so that I could pull the curtain at the polling booth and have my say. I am ashamed to say I needed the reminder.All these years later, voter registration is still my passion. But the actual act of voting had become less personal for me, more rote. Frankly, voting often felt more like an obligation than a privilege. Sometimes it was inconvenient.My friend Wendy, who is my age and studied women's history, saw the HBO movie, too. When she stopped by my desk to talk about it, she looked angry. She was--with herself. 'One thought kept coming back to me as I watched that movie,' she said. 'What would those women think of the way I use, or don't use, my right to vote? All of us take it for granted now, not just younger women, but those of us who did seek to learn.' The right to vote, she said, had become valuable to her 'all over again.'HBO released the movie on video and DVD . I wish all history, social studies and government teachers would include the movie in their curriculum I want it shown on Bunco night, too, and anywhere else women gather. I realize this isn't our usual idea of socializing, but we are not voting in the numbers that we should be, and I think a little shock therapy is in order.It is jarring to watch Woodrow Wilson and his cronies try to persuade a psychiatrist to declare Alice Paul insane so that she could be permanently institutionalized. And it is inspiring to watch the doctor refuse. Alice Paul was strong, he said, and brave. That didn't make her crazy.The doctor admonished the men: 'Courage in women is often mistaken for insanity.' Please, if you are so inclined, pass this on to all the women you know. We need to get out and vote and use this right that was fought so hard for by these very courageous women. Whether you vote democratic, republican or independent party - remember to vote. History is being made.