Monday, December 18, 2017

More DIY Ornaments

I truly enjoyed making ornaments this year with the Maddy. Which then really sparked my crafting bug.  I was just cruising around the net just to see if there was something I would be interested in doing either for this year [which I know I don't have time for] or next [which then I am getting ahead of myself] and I stumbled onto these fun projects on the WHOot. I am thinking the girl elf would be a cute present. In the past I have done my Advent boxes but maybe next near I might make these adorable stockings. Check out the site - there was some cute gifts to bake, crochet, and knit [the lamb pillow and baby booties are just too much].

These are a cute all hung up [theWHOot]
I mean seriously how adorable are these Elves [theWHOot]

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Happy 5th Birthday Savannah!!

May you live a long life
full of gladness and health.
May the dreams you hold dearest.
Be those which come true.
The kindness you spread.
Keep returning to you.  

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Veteran's Day

Thanking all those who served and those serving today.

Saturday, October 7, 2017

Happy 22nd Anniversary

This is the year .. this year you are going to fall deeply and madly in love with me.
Sweetheart .. I already am. 

Wednesday, September 6, 2017


I know what you are thinking ... What? It is barely September! .. I know but I just could not help myself. Hubby agrees with you but compromised that I could only do the inside.  I think in some bizarre way that if I put out Autumn decorations that nice weather will bestow upon the land. I know it is not rational but it just has been sooo warm for sooo long.

So this past weekend the Fall décor boxes were brought in to be sifted through. It is like seeing some very dear friends .. beautiful memories just flood to the present. We have been to Hobby Lobby and Michaels and just picking up just little filler items. I am thinking of getting a new wreath for the front door -- I am still on the hunt for the perfect item.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Kerplunk!! Minion Style

With the temperature holding steading around 100* Mr. and I were trying to come up with creative and fun ways to spend time with Baby Bean. We are so blessed that we get to spend nearly every Saturday with her. We are about half and half with taking her back to our home to play with Henry or run around outside or play in her little pool and taking her on an outing like an indoor play land or Children's Museum.

She is 3 1/2 and is such a wonderful joyful child with tremendous energy. One of the joys we found is that she enjoys is bean bag toss. We set up in the hall way and she knows that her spot is next to the outlet while ours is about a foot behind her. She waits her turn and is so enthusiastic when someone else gets the point. To her it is just a matter of having fun .. not score keeping or winning. Which is great because I am horrible at this game and she will more than likely win anyhow.

Christmas 2016

Mr. and I were at the store running some errands and he says how he would like to see if we can find a game we can play with her. He was leaning toward board games but when we started figuring out what we wanted to accomplish [enjoy an interactive game .. no bells or sirens .. nothing too drawn out or complicated] we saw that Kerplunk had a Minion version .. well we had found our new fun activity. Since we play bean bag toss as a one on one and this one is played by everyone she does try to get a turn after each person. No Maddy ...  it goes Pop-Pop, Grandma then you ... not Maddy, Pop-Pop, Maddy, Grandma and Maddy again. Nice try kiddo. That and she thinks the object is to have the Minions fall. She isn't yet into winning/losing or whose pile is bigger but she does sit and counts everyone's pieces and then she says good job [10 Minions Pop-Pop good job --- heart melting].

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Summer Re-Cap

WOW!! The calendar is saying summer is about over and Autumn is fast approaching. Truthfully it doesn't feel that way here in Phoenix --- it typically stays warm up until November. I thought I would do a quick recap of our summer activities.

Our one big outing was to the Children's Museum. It is in a refurbished old school in downtown and it is pretty cool. Since it still has the old charm it made me feel like I was back in the 4th grade -- no running in the hallway and keeping your voice a bit lower. The activities were not only created to spark imagination but allow the kids to play in each other's imaginary world. Maddy can be a bit shy around others - she stands there and stares at them - but when asked to play she is all in. She watches what others are doing as if she is seeing an instructional video before she starts any activity. There was the rolling balls through a maze [different start points have different endings], the  pretend market / restaurant, and there was pool noodles hanging from the ceiling maze. Which was a BLAST!! When you first walk in to the museum you see this mammoth play structure and the first thing I thought is that Maddy will never go in that. Well .. I was wrong. Mind you she wouldn't go by herself but she did have a buddy who was willing to go into 'The Cage'. Are you guys taking in just how HUGE this thing is!! The pictures don't do it justice .. this thing was ginormous!!!

We balance our Grandparent outings with just bringing her home to enjoy some quieter times such as movies, games, pool, or just laying on the grass and watching the clouds. 

Watching kitten videos with Pop-Pop

Sunday, July 16, 2017

All The Missing Girls

I was so, so, so excited about wanting to read this book. I wanted to absolutely love it and even now I am still not too sure if I like it .. I think I need to re-read it. This is more mystery than thriller that truly started 10 years prior. After a night at the fair a group of close teen age friends disperse to go home and that evening one of the girls goes missing. Soon after our main character, Nicolette [Nic], flees and tries to leave her past far behind her.  Fast forward and Nic returns back to her small town with all its secrets to help her brother sell the family home to pay for their father's elder care. A few days after her return another girl goes missing. Nic believes that the two disappearances are connected to each other and somehow also to her. As she starts to dig into the vanishing of her friend she uncovers some dark secrets and how sometimes you can never truly run from your past.

I know it sounds like a great story, however, it is not the plot that dooms it but it is the creative writing style. This book starts on Day 1 and jumps to Day 15 and works it way backwards [Day 14, Day 13, ect]. You are a bit confused not just of the story plot but the relationships developing. The main character is suppose to be sleep deprived and at times irrational. Remember as a kid ... you would spin and spin so fast with your eyes opened that everything got blurry and when you stopped you felt so disoriented and you couldn't focus well THAT is how I felt reading this book. The jumping around made you feel Nic's desperation to find 'the truth'. I kept loosing the plot so much that I got frustrated - so a few chapters in I started to read the book chronologically .. yes it lost a bit of the suspense but I didn't care at least I could follow the story. The chain of events made so much more sense. It's not the worst book I have read but it is definitely not the amazing 'compulsive read' that it's made out to be.

*SPOILER* The only real question I have is 'what happened to the baby'?

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Private .. LA

I know I was going to take a break from reading any Patterson books but technically this is a collaboration book. Lately I have ben finding his books a kinda dark and a bit disturbing which is why I was wanting to take a break. Maybe I have not truly paid too much attention or perhaps reading a book you have much more details to describe a moment .. where as in a movie it is just a moment and it is processed differently. It was there with Kiss the Girls but again with the movie there wasn't explicit actions being shown but your mind gets the idea that things are happening.

Alright .. enough of this. So back to this book. This book seems to have three story lines in it .. the characters in this private detective agency appropriately named Private, the missing celebrity family and terrorist attacking the city for ransom. Well maybe it isn't as much as three different stories as it is the stories of the cliental of this detective agency. This investigative agency is known to take care of issues in a quick and very quiet manner. The main story is about a celebrity family The Harlows [think Brad and Angelina] who disappear from their family home without a trace - the agency is called in to help find them before the media notices they are gone. The Bradgenlina plot did try to be interesting by take the team to different countries, the resistance from their publicist and the reasoning for their disappearance was not too far fetched [I mean we all think celebrities are a bit .. quirky and weird].

The second story [which isn't even on the cover] seems a bit more interesting. It is about a group of terrorist who are holding the city for ransom and how much the city has to pay for their delinquency. He should have stayed with this story a bit longer.

Even though it took me a really really long time to read - it had to do more with time than the book. But I truly think I am going to take a break from Patterson and see what else is out there.

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Where'd You Go, Bernadette

I heard about this book as a book recommendation at Posie Gets Cozy a looong time ago [back in 2013] it is so embarrassing that it has been on my must read for so long. But during this last library visit I said 'today is the day' and checked it out and I am glad that I did.

The main premise of the story is about a 15 year old girl - Bee - and her quest to find her agoraphobic mother - Bernadette. Bernadette goes missing shortly before the family trip to Antarctica to bittersweetly celebrate Bee's acceptance to the boarding school her Mother attended as a teen. Bee and her Mom have this Gilmore Girlish relationship where they are super close friends. This mainly came when Bernadette made the decision to leave her career and be a stay at home Mom and made Bee her whole life. Their odd language or description of things was also a plus - Bernadette describes the other Moms at Bee's fancy private school as 'gnats' [''Because they’re annoying, but not so annoying that you actually want to spend valuable energy on them”] -- the feeling is mutual since these Moms do not like her in the least - her language, rude behavior, absentee PTSA parent, her appearance - all are fuel for the on-going feuds with the other Moms .. especially with one instigator Audrey Griffin which is also her neighbor. Before Bernadette is missing .. her husband - a Microsoft guru - is told of some incidents regarding her neighbor by his new intern who happens to be a very good friend of Audrey [so it is hear say and very one sided and she has an agenda of her own ]. He is starting to doubt his wife's state of mind and during an intervention the FBI come over and the family finds out that the virtual personal assistant she hired to put together this trip is a con-artist which with everything else that is happening overwhelms Bernadette and she escapes out of a bathroom window. And 'POOF' vanishes. Bee is desperately trying to piece her mother's life through a series of emails and speaking with people who truly knew her in an attempt to find out where she might have gone.

Sunday, March 5, 2017

Disappointed! Disappointed! Not Disappointed!

Whew!! That was a super busy 2016. Now thinking about it I think it was mainly from September all the way to December .. just one giant blur. So busy in fact we didn't really get much time to relax. But with the start of February we have finally added movies onto our movie list and I am telling you those are 4 hours I can't get back and another 2 spent wisely.

We will start with the one we knew off the gate that we were hoping would be good but knew down deep inside it wouldn't be and that is San Andrés. Premis is that the San Andrés fault line is finally shifting causing cataclistic events and an emergency helicopter rescuer who is trying to save his family. The beginning reminded me of the opening scene of Cliffhanger but quickly turned into an over computer generated version of Day After Tomorrow (which is a better movie on every single level - definatly add to your movie list). And I can't even go into the acting.

Rosebud .. is often the only word needed to identify the classic film Citizen Kane. Rosebud was the last words of the eccentric newspaper millionaire Charles Foster Kane. The story is about one newspaper reporter who went looking to find out who Rosebud was. This movie is in true Orsen Wells style .. a little dark .. a little dismal and a looming question. At times it can be a bit hard to follow the story since the timeline overlap with each person's version of an event but for the most part it is just for clarification. I had my hopes up with this movie since I LOVE Well's The Third Man and it is on all the top movie lists but it just wasn't as great as I hoped for. Side note .. this movie was based 'loosely' on William Randolph Hearst the newspaper mogal and his enumeration for his girlfriend's uhm 'flower'. Hearst hated the idea of this movie being made so much that he tried to stop the movie from being made .. he even went as far as calling Wells a Communist to stop production. Which didn't work but what he did was sabotage the movie post-production. Since Hearst owned large amounts of new papers and media chains .. he made sure none of his newspapers wrote about the movie or ran ads and since he was a giant of his times, he got the theaters to limit the amount of show times which caused Wells to lose profit. Another fun fact .. Wells was just 25 years old when he co-wrote, directed, produced and stared in such a widely acclaimed film.

The last movie on this list is Kingsman : The Secret Service. Truth be told I saw this poster and I knew I had to watch the movie. I thought now THAT is organized .. like if Martha Stewart and Marie Kondo had a child THIS would be what his closet would look like. But beyond the poster I didn't have any high hopes .. even though I do really do like Colin Firth. Well I am happy that this movie disappointed me. I can say it was really clever and super funny. Colin Firth kicking butt while listening to Free Bird is awesome .. very bloody and overkill but awesome none the same. The bar scene makes me want to walk around with an umbrella and say things like 'manners .. maketh' to anyone who is ungentlemanly. But know the language is a bit strong .. this one might be best for higher teens and up.

Sunday, February 19, 2017


Ever since picking up the Mysterious Benedict Society book a year or so back .. I have made it a habit to peak into the kids section of the Library just to see what they had. To be honest I have been thinking about picking up Harry Potter this year but then I past this little treasure.

Wonder by RJ Palacio is a sweet story about a 10 year old boy - Auggie - who was born with a facial abnormality and his (and his parents) decision to pursue going to a traditional school. Up until now he has been homeschool due to his various and extensive surgeries. All his experiences are captured .. who he meets, how he meets them, how he feels and the ups and downs of being around so many people when all he wants to be is invisible. Each chapter is at the view point of a different character - Auggie, his sister, some friends - each with their own view point of events and how they see and feel about Auggie.

Like I said it is a sweet story but one with a deep and emotional theme.

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Someone Is 3!!

Oh munchkin you are so much fun!
You are such a wonderful blessing to the world around you

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Back to Back Cross

I am sorry for being gone. I hope everyone's holiday was wonderful. I ended and started the year with my main book man Alex Cross. I did have such a hard time with the ending of Cross Justice than with Merry Christmas .. to the point that I might need a small break from his books.

I ended the year with the appropriately named Merry Christmas Alex Cross - still staying with his signature dual stories [ which could have turned into 2 books within themselves ] Alex and his family eagerly anticipate a wonderful Christmas holiday together when he gets a call about a situation where an bankrupt addict lawyer who lost everything ..his dignity, prestigious career and enviable life .. takes his ex-wife, their young children and her new husband [a family friend] hostage at their home on this blizzardy Christmas Eve. Through out the day he keeps battling this man to release his family while his own family is pressing him hard to come home for Christmas. I did get really annoyed that his family was making him feel like what he is doing is wrong .. as if he is hanging out at the bar with his friends and not with them at home on Christmas ... THE MAN IS WORKING ON SAVING LIVES!! GEEEEZZ! Just when he thinks he can spend a well deserve Christmas Day with his family .. he gets a second call when face recognition spotted a female terrorist on the Metro. He gets to the Metro and she disappears .. exits are blocked and everyone is trapped. But who is the hunter and who is the hunted .. only one gets out to enjoy a few moments of what is left of Christmas Day. If you like action .. then his is definitely the book for you since it has it all .. kidnapping, hostages, shooting, bombs, running and more running .. always fighting against time.

Then I started the year with Cross Justice and read this book in 11 days .. which to me is some kind of record. I just couldn't put it down .. I needed to know the 'who done it' but I will tell you that when I found out who the killer was I was disturbed [ still am to some degree I guess ]. This book is more emotional and psychological than the jam packed action from above. Alex has a meeting with his past and so does Nana. He returns to his home town after being away for over 30 years. The type of small town that swallows you up and keeps you from becoming anything great. The kind of small town that the sins of the father are passed to the child and it is unshakeable. The only way to break it is to get out --- leave and never go back. Alex's cousin is accused of a horrible crime and Alex comes to help in a way that only Alex can. You don't know who to trust -- in a town where everyone could have a motive ... including the cousin. The second link to his past leads him to sunny Florida .. where a serial killer is proving to be very cunning. Lots of plot twists and turns that are lead by anger, jealousy, ugliness and fear. After this one though I think I am going to have to read something a little .. less thriller-ish.

Sunday, January 1, 2017