Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Photography Tips from a Pro {not me}

Several Surgeon General- type warnings need to preceed this post:
1. I am, innoshapeorform, qualified to give any sort of photography "expert" advice. I'm just going to pass along some recently learned information.
2. This is most likely going to be a long and technical post. You are under no obligation to dedicate yourself unless you are interested in photography technicality or you care about cute pictures of my kids. One or the other should keep you entertained.
Seriously, I have come across about a dozen posts like this in the past and have never wanted to take the time to learn about my camera before now. If this is your now, well then, Come On!
3. All this info came from my friend, Melissa, who was kind enough to share some trade secrets. She's the real expert and has taken many, many adorable pics of my kiddos and countless others of all ages- including our Christmas cards. {Yes, that's 4 different links. If you have been reading for any amount of time you might know of my love of Melissa.}

Deep cleansing breath. Let's go.

Monday night I took a photography crash course. Before you start thinking I'm all lucky ducky and why-didn't-I-invite-you, you should know this was an education seminar for the Junior League. The point was to educate some regular schmoes on how to operate their fain-cee cameras they bought, but don't know how to use so we could take pictures of Junior League events that could be used for publications.

So, I was a willing schmoe. And so were 10 other people. The class filled up in under 10 minutes, so there were even schmoes on a waiting list.

We all sat at Melissa's beautiful studio, willing and able to soak up her infinite knowledge, and admitted that we had never ventured off the Auto controller on our cameras.

* Melissa said that 90% of the time, the Auto controls are the wrong setting for your picture.
So, since my home base on my camera is the Auto setting- and sometimes SCN (for Scene) if I'm a little wild- my ears perked up and I decided to listen.

There are 3 things that determine the exposure of your picture:
ISO [International Standards Organization] and
Shutter Speed.

I have heard all these terms before this workshop, but since I didn't understand them, they kinda made me queasy. But I took the plunge and was willing to learn. We met our neices at the park this afternoon so I could try out some of my new knowledge.

Aperture controls the amount of light you let in the picture. Technically, it's the amount of light let in the lens. For some reason, the level of aperture in represented by a weird term: f-stop. The larger the f-stop number, the smaller the opening in the lens. And vice versa.
Once you learn how to play with this on your camera, the main side effect to be concerned with is depth of focus.
The f-stop numbers on your camera are actually opposite of what you would think {FINE: what I would think}. The smaller number means there is a large aperture {f2.8= small depth of field/ large aperture}. The possible concern {unless you are going for this look, of course}, is that subjects far away from your focus point will be out of focus.

Here is Henry playing and his face is the focus and the background is out of focus. I have to admit that I did this with editing software on the back end {Picnik effect Fancy Focus}, but this is the idea. You'll see I was pretty close to most of my subjects today, so I didn't get a good chance to show this as much as you would be able to if you had a line up of people. Or if the kids you took to the park would be still for one solitary second.

This is a great technique to use if there is clutter in the background of your area or small thingsSept 09.7 266
like graffiti behind your beautiful child's head.
Danggit. You will notice now. But you didn't before, did you?

On the opposite side of the coin, f22 would be a small aperture, with a large depth of field {most subjects in your image will be in focus}. This is great to use if you are outside and there is a ton of light or you want to get a picture of 12 smiling 4 year olds in a row {vs. the one 4 year old that you actually care about}.

Here's Ollie in the soccer net. And I think this is an example of small aperture because the net at the bottom is still in focus-ish. I really don't know, but I liked the picture, so here you go.
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ISO is next and it has to do with the sensor sensitivity to light. Remember when you used to buy film for your crank-a-jank cameras {in 200, 400, 600 or 800?}? I would always buy 800 because I wanted my pictures to be the coolest and that was the higest number. Smart cookie, aren't I?
Well, that is great for outdoor pictures with a lot of light, but the inside pictures would always look grainy. Anyone else?
Same thing goes to the ISO settings on your camera now. The higher the ISO, the more sensitive your film is to light.

I didn't do too much fooling around with this setting today since it was bright as all get out and this was a no brainer. The average setting {at least on my camera} for ISO is 200 and I kept it there. So you get some pictures I loved just for your viewing pleasure.

Here is my sweet little neice, M {3}Sept 09.7 267
and her younger sister, M {2}.
Another invaluable tip is if you completely blow the color control on a picture, make it black and white! VOILA!
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Finally, Shutter Speed is the 3rd factor in exposure.
Shutter speed is the easiest one for me to understand. It's the length of time for the actual Click of the picture. {If you just thought "Click! Take a Pic!" from Dora, we should be friends.}

I did play around with this quite a bit and the numbers are a little confusing, too, like the aperture f-stop numbers. If someone says 125, that means 1/ 125th of a second that the camera is opened. So, 1 would be a very slow shutter speed and 1600 {really 1/ 1600} would be super fast. I found that anywhere from 1/ 125- 1/ 250 worked well with my fast moving kids.
The idea behind shutter speed is to freeze action and I am ALL-ways trying to do this and have hundreds of blurry pictures to prove it.

Here is Ollie frozen mid-air in a jump {really fast shutter speed}.
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And here is M jumping {really slow shutter speed}.
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The only reason I can think that you would want that blurred effect would be for some sort of artistic version of a picture {like a cheerleader being tossed in the air or one of your kids throwing their food across the table}.

Those are the basics, folks. Melissa was a great teacher, but I have to admit the student still needs a lot of work.

As a wrap up, here are the Biggest Tips I've Learned:
1. You HAVE to read your camera manual. These key words {above} will give you an idea of what to look for and where to begin.
2. Don't be afraid to try different settings and even going to the manual setting- EGADDS!
3. Know what look you are going for and set your camera accordingly before you start shooting.
4. Set the white balance on your camera and don't be afraid to change it or play around with it. This will help tremendously if you are inside and keep getting yellow-y pictures.
5. TURN OFF YOUR FLASH. I have read this a dozen times- and obviously didn't need it today- but have learned that you really don't need it on your camera if you can control the other exposure features.

Here are the rest of my favorites from today:
Sept 09.7 229

Sept 09.7 219

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I cannot begin to tell you how fast I'm gonna slap this picture below in a frame. Sept 09.7 265
I think my subjects got a little tired of having their picture taken.
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Sept 09.7 315
"For the love of fruit snacks, Mooooom, we are back at the car. Put down the stinking camera."

Thanks for coming to my photography mini-session! I hope you learned something... anything. And I really hope my pictures improve for you!

What's your favorite photography tip to share?

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Miss Piggy's Quick Update

I can't tell you how much I love your comments, in general.
Even more than that, I covet {watch out!! CHURCH word!} and appreciate your prayers for my sweet little man through the comments or any time.
He popped back up Monday morning like he had never tossed his cookies, given us a fright or made us google "swine flu symptoms" all night! He had no more fever and went back to mother's morning out today {Tuesday}. Hooray! Praise the Lord!
Poor kid doesn't even know yet that he is supposed to milk his symptoms for a few days to miss school for longer. I'm sure he'll learn one day...

I'll be back shortly to tell you about the photography class I took last night! It was WONDERFUL and I learned some great tips I'll share.

Thanks again for your prayers and kind words! I know there are a lot of families out there that who are suffering with serious illness. My friend Bonnie's little guy, Ethan is doing so much better, but I'm sure they would still love your prayers as they adjust to a new normal. Go over there and check on him! You'll love the story!

And if you would like to leave the name or a link to a family who is in need of prayer in the comments section, we will all go pray for them! Who's in?
What a great way to give encouragement and it's simple and free.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Reporting LIVE From the Infirmary

Clean off your thermometer, go get some Pedialyte and wash everything in hot water. Our house is down with the funk. The F.O.N.K., if you will.

Thankfully, it's not our whole house, yet. But Henry has it hard and heavy and Jason and I are feeling pretty crummy {I think mine is just sinus-y, though}.

It didn't hit Henry until tonight.

We were at church and the childcare worker {who we love} came hauling cookies down the hall and across the church to tell us that Henry was tossing cookies. So then, Jason, Robin {childcare worker} and I went running like Forrest, Jen-nay and the bad guys in that truck across the church and downstairs to the childcare room to find a topless little man who was peaked and sad. He hadn't eaten any dinner and he had thrown up once. We whisked him home, gave him a bath and rocked him to sleep. He didn't want any Pedialyte, ice chips or trains, but he just wanted to cuddle and rock; VERY unlike my little man on the go. His temp was 99.4 and we gave him some Motrin {I know you all have an opinion about this, but we went with the drugs, okay?}.

The truth is, I do have one big 'ole fear: SWINE FLU. As you'll recall, our city went through a scare earlier this year and I overreacted. Neither kiddo got sick, but the news was very scary. Now "they" say it's just a little worse than the regular flu, but just in season earlier. We have the vaccine in town {I think?}, but it might be too late for that.

Would you mind saying a little prayer for Henry? I am hoping and praying he'll be fine in the morning {esp. since his fever isn't high} and just has a little bug, but I will say the stuffed animals are not taking any risks.


I'm off to Lysol down the doorknobs, phones and trains. And take We Want the Funk off my iPod.
I think it's just a jinx.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Fall Favorite: Microwave Apple Crisp

Since we have covered the best things of fall: football and consignment sales, I need to add one more of the absolute best things of the season: the FOOD!

I love soups, breads, anything pumpkin {except the seeds; I know- crazy} and Apples.
This recipe is a classic because it is quick, easy and microwavable! I got it from my mother in law and it's a staple for our family in the fall.

Here are the picture directions and the whole recipe is included below.

Take 5-6 medium size green apples {make sure this week's coupons are in the back}
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and peel them.
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Your mess will resemble this. Sept 09.6 032
Then chop them up like so. Just cut into big pieces and then into a little bit smaller than bite size pieces. Place in a 9 x 13 or casserole dish or another microwavable container.
Make sure the container will fit in the microwave.
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At this point, make sure you children aren't eating the pumpkin bread you made earlier like vultures.
Surely the younger one won't have a bargaining system with the older.
No, not civilized children.
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In a big bowl, combine 1 cup of flower and 1 cup of brown sugar.
Then add 1 teaspoon of cinnamon, 1/2 tsp of salt and mix them all together.
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Add 1 stick of butter not melted. The reason is because it melts in the microwave and makes the crust a yummy, delicious crunchy. The best way to chop it up in there, though is to make it room temperature and coarsely chop it into the mixture.

The quickest way to make it room temp is to set it in a bowl of warm water.
Isn't that a neat tip? I just heard it the other day from a blog! {If I had any sort of memory I would link that person, but alas, my brain is mush. It has been picked by afore-mentioned vultures.}
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Then add 3/4 cup of oatmeal. Mix in lightly.
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Sprinkle mixture evenly on top of apples.
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Microwave on high for 7 minutes and rotate for another 7 minutes.
OR- if you are super Fain-See like me, you might have a microwave that rotates ALL BY ITSELF. In that case, microwave for 14 minutes.

During those 14 minutes, you can either clean that huge mess that's reflected in the microwave there...
Sept 09.6 042
Or you can go hang out with those kiddos who apparently have not eaten a thing all day.
You see how frail, petite and small they are {since my newly minted 4 year old towers above the kitchen counters}...
Sept 09.6 044
And then you pull out this yum-mo dish and enjoy it's crusty, appley dessert!
Obviously you have to taste-test a bite, right?
Sept 09.6 050

For you cut and paste types {hello, my Type A friends!}, here is the recipe. I hope you enjoy and stove off your own vultures; they will surely be circling this dessert.

Microwave Apple Crisp
* 5 cups tart apples {sliced or chopped} I use green apples and chop them.
* 1 cup flour
* 1 cup brown sugar
* 1/2 tsp. salt
* 1 stick butter {not melted}
* 3/4 cup oatmeal

Place chopped apples in microwavable dish.
Mix flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, salt, then coarsely chop in butter.
Mix in oatmeal lightly.
Sprinkle mixture evenly on top of apples.

Microwave on high for 7 minutes. Rotate and cook another 7 minutes.

For more recipes, check out Kelly's Korner and Vanderbilt Wife today. They are sure to keep you full of ideas for the fall!

And don't forget to register for the Harry Connick, Jr. CD Giveaway going on now until Monday! Wouldn't you really be weak in the knees with some Harry and some Apple Crisp?! Now, that's perfection!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

DIY: Tray Chic!

I'm so glad you all love Harry as much as I do! If you haven't registered for the new Harry Connick, Jr. CD giveaway, be sure to do that before you leave! Hop right on down there!

Today I am sharing a fun project with you. A fun, stolen idea that I am implementing in my own home. Isn't that part of the beauty of blogs? Don't ask me why I'm so PROUD of myself for completely copying someone else's idea, but I do feel like I need to show you my extreme creativity *ahem* in case you want to completely copy it from me.

And I would love that, so go for it!

I saw this idea about 6 months ago at Becky's Five Mockingbirds and at Phillips Phamily Mama's site.
So, I rushed off to buy all the supplies:
A cute tray {many people have done this with silver platters, too, but this one turned out best for my space}
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With fun sides and a plain old boring flat bottom {I wish I could say that about my own bottom... "butt" I digress}
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And some chalkboard paint.
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Then I managed to let the things sit in a closet for 6 months and gather dust until I found them when looking for something else and got excited all over again!

I'm sure that's just how Martha Stewart does her projects.

The secret to painting this cute tray is to use a sponge brush {not bristles} and cover it really well like so:
Sept 09.3 012
Then I found a cute ribbon while at Hancock Fabrics purchasing my Snuggie. I tied it in knots around the handles and made a knot at the top. No hot glue required! Meaning: no permanent damage to fingers required!
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But, unfortunately, it hung like this and looked goofy.
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So I got out my handy pink hammer and some nails and fixed it by adding nails to prop it up underneath.
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Then I added a snappy saying that, again, I completely and totally copied from Kristin at We Are That Family. A thief and a liar {per the info provided below on the chalkboard}. What can I say? One can dream.
Sept 09.6 059

For more DIY tips, check out Kimba's DIY Day at A Soft Place to Land and the DIY Show Off!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

A Harry Connick, Jr. Review and Giveaway!

This giveaway is now closed. has spoken and the lucky weiner is commenter #54- Lindsey from Where the Wild Things Are. Congrats, Lindsey! You must be Irish, you lucky gal!

Do you know that one Perfect song that you want to be the first dance song at your wedding reception? The one that will be ideally symbolize your love, your holy union and magically make you thinner while the whole room swoons at your sickening love?


The truth is, Jason and I never had THAT song. Even more of the truth is that I have no idea what song we danced to for our first dance! We asked the band to play a James Taylor song {Something in the Way She Moves}, but they didn't "know" it {really??}, so we improvised the night of the reception and ended up with "Bad, Bad Leroy Brown"... or something as romantic and lovely as that. I guess I've blocked it from my memory!

I'm so excited to be doing my first official review and telling you all about the new Harry Connick, Jr. album that came out today! I am beside myself to be asked to review it because we LOVE Harry {first name basis in my mind}, so I jumped at the opportunity. Jason and I have seen Harry live and it was amazing and we listen to his Christmas albums every year.

Harry's new CD is called Your Songs and it's chocked full of Perfect first dance songs and other remakes of your favorite songs {from Elvis to Sinatra to Nat King Cole}. He performs classics like "Can't Help Falling in Love with You" {Elvis}, "And I Love Her" {Beatles, of course}, "Besame Mucho" {which means Kiss Me Much} and "The Way You Look Tonight". If you want to hear a bit a see a behind the scenes look at the making of the album, this video will give you a great snapshot!
Wouldn't any if those be perfect at a wedding?
Specifically if you were I was marrying Harry?
Do you think he could sing to me while dancing with me?

Harry Connick, Jr.

Apparently he is already married {and I guess I am, too}, but my Hubs loves him as much as I do, so I think he would have loved to have Harry at our wedding.


Don't we all look great together? So natural.

Jason likes his musical ability/ styling/ the band, etc. You know, things music people would like.
I fall for his love-er-ly voice and everything that he croons to me .

Most importantly, I love that we popped this CD in and my sweet hubs spun me around the kitchen, carefully avoiding trains and Hot Wheels, while briefly ignoring the pleas of young children in our path. Something about Harry's voice makes you remember falling in love. And whisks you back to that time when you didn't think about discipline methods, lost shin guards, potty training or dinosaur shaped foods.

Thank you, Harry. I appreciate that time warp.

And as much as I love your music, Harry, I have to let you know I'm happily taken by a man who rocks out with our children and takes me for a spin around the kitchen every now and again.
So, if you want a peaceful CD to pop in while doing dishes, soaking in a bubble bath or hopefully dancing with your man {or woman, guys- hello guys? Can you take a hint, here?}, I would highly recommend this one.

It'll put a kick in your step unlike Bad, Bad Leroy Brown could ever do.

And I am happy to pass along the LOVE and give you your very own copy of this new CD!
Just leave a comment telling me your first dance song {if you remember} or what you want it to be {if you haven't gotten married, yet, or if you'd like to change it!- song, not husband}.

That will be your entry!
One entry per person, please. And don't forget to leave your e-mail address {if it isn't connected to your Blogger account} so I can get in touch with you!
I'll draw for one winner next Monday at 12:00 noon. Good Luck!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Video Killed the Radio Star:: My Fall TV Lineup

Ever since HeMan, Who's the Boss? and Max Headroom lulled me into their worlds, I have been a TV fan. I love the stories, the games, the suspense {not scary stuff, though} and am overall a big fan of TV.

It might not surprise you then that my tech-loving husband bought me a TiVo for Valentine's Day... about 7+ years ago- soon after they came out and were quasi-mainstream.

He had told me about it before it arrived as a gift and it was REALLY new-fangled, flying-car technology then. This is how the conversation went:

Me: What do you mean? It's like a VCR?
Hubs: No. It's a computer that records all the tv shows you want it to record and stores them for you.
Me: Why would I want that when I can keep recording Friends, Gilmore Girls and American Idol {that would be Season 1} on tapes? There's nothing wrong with my system.
Hubs: You have no idea what all this can record and it will allow you to pause, rewind and fast forward live TV.
Me: There is no way this is possible.
Hubs: Yes. It's true.
Me: I don't see this thing lasting and I really don't think we need one.

Famous last words.
I'm so glad he didn't listen to me. Instead he showed up with that big box for Valentine's Day and I have loved it him even more since then.

Nowadays, we have that TiVo {still kickin'!} upstairs in the playroom full of kids shows and a cable company- provided DVR downstairs on the grown up TV. As someone who has both, I would vote for a TiVo any day of the week.

This is the time of year when they both go into full swing because THE SHOWS ARE BACK!! WOOHOO!!

Here are my Top Ten Shows I Will Be Watching This Fall
{linked to my friend Oh Amanda's Top Ten Tuesday}:
10. Chuck
Starting with an exception already, NBC has let me down. I mean WAY down. Chuck is my VERY favorite show and it's being pushed back 'til March. WHAT?? I need to be writing a letter to the peacock instead of this blog post. Please tell me you love Chuck, too.

9. What Not To Wear
I'm a sucka for before and afters. And I love that they give someone a whole new outlook on themselves via the clothes/ hair/ uni-brow removal.

8. Cake Boss/ Ultimate Cake Off/ Cake What Your Mama Gave You
{OK, I made that last one up.} I've gotten addicted to these cake shows over the summer when there was not much else on. They are so amazing to watch! You might recall that Jason wanted to do this for my birthday- mainly because we're kind of hooked on these reality shows. He even used the word FONDANT when talking about my birthday cake prep. Not that he used the actual fondant... he was just proud he used it correctly in a sentence.

7. Biggest Loser
How can you not love this show? It's so inspiring. And I even try hard not to eat potato chips while I'm watching it.

6. Oprah
Yes. I TiVo every day, but don't get to watch most of them. What can I say? I love the way she introduces people {for her to scream Hillary DUUUUUNNNN- HHAAAAAMMMM is a little dream of mine} and I think she's good at what she does.
Politics? Notsomuch.
Talk show host? Pretty darn good.

5. 18 Kids and Counting
I'm pretty sure my love for the Duggars is well documented. The fact that I missed their show tonight is bothering me and I'm hoping to skip {if only this long skirt would let me... I kid, I joke} along and go watch tonight's episode soon!

4. Glee
I'm new to this one, but got sucked in right away when they burst into song. I also loved the last episode when the shop teacher accidentally cut off his thumbs and they gave him a thumbs up cake. As seen here on Cake Wrecks.

3. Psyche
Absolutely hilarious. You have to watch this is you aren't already. One of the smartest shows on TV. You have to watch it twice to catch all the spirit finger jokes, 80's references and one-liners.

2. Grey's Anatomy
Sucked in since Day 1. Period.
Have you seen the new sesason's trailer online? Oh, friends- or Bleeple- It's gonna be good. I think Izzy is back. And we know George left the show, but I can't wait to find out the details!

1. The Office
This is a no- brainer for #1. We LOVE The Office and again, if you aren't watching it, you are missing out. I love Jim and Pam so much and just know they are my friends. Anybody else?
If you have ever worked in an office, you can relate to most of the characters. And the Parkour in the season premier was awesome. We have already watched it 3 times and it just aired on Thursday.
Thank you, DVR.

Since I have linked to Hulu twice, I should introduce you to it if you don't know about it. It allows you to watch most of the major network shows the day after they air online for Free! So get on over there and catch up!

I'm sure your list is completely different because you like NCIS, Heroes or How I Met Your Mother or some other wildly popular show that doesn't make my list because it is scary/ too in depth/ I didn't catch it at the beginning and I'm completely LOST *ahem, Lost*, so I'm sorry.

But do tell me what show you're most excited about returning.
What does your list look like?

And I apologize that these shows don't have pictures or links to their sites.
I really AM hurrying to go see what the Duggars were up to this week.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

A Backwards Robe? A Blanket? Nooo... It's a

Do you love infomercials? I have a sickening affection for them. My favorite part is when the actor {always in black and white} is having a terrible time changing the channel/ chopping tomatoes/cleaning spills - what would seem to be an easy every day task. But NOW, with the help of THIS NEW PRODUCT, your life can be so much EASIER {and in color, of course}.

I don't think I've ever actually bought one of these items from an 800 # {Call NOW!!} on TV, but I've had a few "As seen on TV" items in my day. By far, my most favorite is my most recent purchase: The Snuggie. I'm sure you've seen the commercials for this blanket with sleeves and possibly the parody of it {I won't link to it because it's has a bit of profanity, but if you can handle that, then you would get a kick out of it on YouTube}.

I heard about a collegiate version of the Snuggie from my friend Brenda on Facebook and immediately went down to the Hancock's Fabrics to pick one up for myself.

Snuggie box

Because one can never have too much college paraphernalia in the football season.

While I decided not to "Take It Everywhere" just yet, I can tell you for sure is that I love it.

It's perfect for lounging on the sofa reading the latest Southern Living.

Snuggie 1

Or changing the channels with the remote control without letting your arms into the cold, brisk air

Snuggie 2

But what to do if the phone rings? Well you answer it with ease, of course, within the warmth of your Snuggie.

Snuggie 3

And if a dog needs to jump in your lap? Well, they are right at home in the soft fleece of the Snuggie.

Snuggie 4

There are just too many options here. You can't go wrong with the Snuggie. {Special thanks to my hubs here for taking these goofy staged pictures and laughing at with me.}

So, yes, it's basically a robe put on backwards and marketed to make you purchase it as a wonder-blanket. And I bought one and love it. Because I'm a sucker.

But I'm a warm sucker who has typed this whole post within the comfort of my Snuggie on the sofa. You know you're jealous.

So, what's your favorite infomercial?
Do you have a Snuggie?

What is your favorite Billy Mays product? And you can't all say the Shamwow.

Friday, September 18, 2009


Girls and Boy(s?? I'm not sure if a male other than my dad reads this- maybe hubs and FIL?),

How about Bleeple {short for Blog People; I kinda like it- your thoughts?},
I am beyond words excited to see you!

Things have been a bit hairy here this week to say the least.
I only get about 3.5 precious, solid gold hours a day to myself 4 times a week {thanks to pre-school/ mothers morning out}. This week, I have spent them all working at the afore-mentioned consignment sale. Combined with shopping and dropping off items to sell, I've been there 15 hours the past 4 days. I think that's a little too much used-goods-time for anyone in a week, but I have loved every second of it! I'll have to show you my goods soon!

Here are a few updates to catch up (or ketchup- get it?):
* Patrick Swayze up and died without asking me and I'm all torn up about it. My friend Mary wrote a wonderful post on the topic that I could cut and paste here, but I'll just send you over there to read it if you are in Dirty Dancing mourning like I am.

* You might know that my hubs is a huge Beatles fan. So, of course he had the Beatles Rock Band on pre-order and got it the day it came out. What I didn't realize was how much our WHOLE family would love it! I'm sure I'll do a post dedicated to it later, but everyone has gotten in on the act.
Here is Henry on drums.

H on drums

And Ollie on guitar.

O on guitar

Watch out Partridge Family! I will put these kids on a Duggar- style bus and take your money any day!!

Seriously, they have no clue what they are doing, but Jason has been very happy to hear them singing Yellow Submarine, Twist and Shout and Hello, Goodbye {instead of Jesus Loves Me- wait, I can't say that. You know what I mean... it's been nice to have some song options}.

* Remember this picture?

Hillary's 10th birthday party

Well, that pink arrow is towards me, but on the bottom far left sitting on the slide is one of my dear elementary schools friends, who I also went to college with, Bonnie.

Bonnie and her husband had a son, Ethan {their second child} on September 10th and he was born with pneumonia and another breathing disorder. He was taken to a NICU in Birmingham and they have started a blog to keep their family and friends updated. Please pop over there and say a prayer/ leave a comment for their strength, continued strong faith and his quick recovery if you can.

* One of my favorite peeps, Monica at The Writer Chic was nice enough to blog about yours truly as one of her peeps. She just plain made my day.

I have missed you all this week and will get back into the bloggy-hood shortly. If I can tear myself away from the drums... :)

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