Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Christmas is... HERE!

Tonight is Christmas Eve. Tomorrow is Christmas. Tomorrow we drive to Ontario. Tomorrow it is supposed to snow everywhere between here and Ontario. Tomorrow is going to be an interesting day... Tomorrow night, I hope to lay my head on a pillow at my parents house. Tomorrow I may lay my head on a hotel pillow (but we hope not).

Tonight I still have to pack. We'll just have to take tomorrow as it comes.


Tuesday, December 23, 2008

36 hours

until we are on the road :) My sister and bro-in-law are on the road already - have been all day and have another 8+ hours to go apparently... Lucky them, 4 month old baby and all... We're hoping for a decent traveling day on Christmas. (Fingers crossed)

I apologize for the lack-luster attempts at blogging. I'm so tired, perhaps this was a bad time to promise blogging, cause now I'm just going to bore you to death until you stop reading it anyway.

THings I'm looking forward to happening in 2009:

- one way or another, working a full time week again.
- getting into school for my teachers certificate.
- loving my husband
- teaching my puppy that OUTSIDE is a good place for pooping.
- eliminating a butt load of debt (see the first line item to see how that will be accomplished)

Definitely not an exhaustive list, but who can make an exhaustive list when you yourself are exhausted?? Until tomorrow.... Out.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Pitter Patter

There are going to be 4 dogs at my parents for Christmas. It is going to be interesting. Rumor has it, there is going to be a lot of pitter patter of doggy feet on the hard wood floors. I'm looking forward to seeing Shalom running full speed like he does here, not realizing he has zero traction on the smooth floors.

Tonight, we enjoyed a fun evening out at Fuddruckers, Hershey Chocolate World, and Hershey Sweet Lights with our good friends and neighbours, Michelle and Dan. We love them. We love chocolate. It was a good night. Thanks Michelle and Dan!

I've been doing a little bit of Christmas baking to take along, to help out my mom who is trying to get the house ready for company. Today I made Hot Pretzels. I highly recommend them if you like a little spice. Here's the recipe:

1 tbsp cayenne pepper
1 tbsp Broiled Steak seasoning
1 package dry ranch dressing
1 tsp dill weed
1 tsp black pepper
1 cup veggie oil
2 bags unsalted pretzels

Mix dry ingredients and stir in oil. Pour over pretzels and bake at 200degrees for an hour, stirring every 15 minutes. We used salted pretzels because the unsalted ones were practically twice the price. They are still good but a little over salty, so I would recommend the unsalted. Let me know if you try them!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Cerenia or Caffienia???

We are heading to Ontario in seven sleeps (Christmas morning). This is the first long drive that Shalom will be joining us on since the trip to New Brunswick when he was 12 weeks old. Back then, he was fine -- he loved to peek out the window, jump from the front seat to the back seat and back again. He would settle only after making sure he had checked in every corner of the car. And then only for a moment. If we wanted a moment of no moving dog, we needed to lock him in the kennel -- and then we got to listen to him whine until he settled down.

Since then, however, he has gotten very uncomfortable in the car. A ten minute drive will **always** contain at least one puking episode, if not two or three.

So we asked the vet about motion sickness meds for puppies and picked up some pills called Cerenia. We were told we should have a trial run to get the dose correct before we go. So tonight, we piled in the car, meds in tummy, and went to check out some Christmas lights around town. Ten minutes in -- BLAH.. all over my seat. So puppy went home and took another pill, but we decided to leave him home for the rest of the night and check the dose by seeing how sleepy it made him instead. When we got home, he was ALL OVER THE PLACE. It was hilarious, much the opposite effect that we expected from this "may cause drowsiness" medicine.

Needless to say, it's going to be an interesting trip to Ontario next week...

Sunday, December 14, 2008

2008 in 2008 Lost!

Well, I hate to have to admit this -- but I lost ALL my 2008 in 2008 pictures when my computer died a couple months ago :( I had so many moments captured on film and now they're GONE! :(

Ok, I lie. My computer IS dead, but I believe I only would have lost a couple hundred pictures. Sigh. Can I keep no commitment?? My new blogging commitment I will keep.

Today marks yet another day where I did NOT catch up on house work. Why is it that more often than not, our home looks like a tornado went through it?? I'm ashamed to say, I would be terribly embarrassed if someone I knew decided to drop in on us. This is to my shame because, in all truth, I would love for friends to feel welcome to just drop in.. Yet I would be careful to only open the door far enough for me to slip out and enjoy a chilly hello in the drive way. What a way to share a new home.....

Commitment #2- Something has GOT to change. "Neat" has never been my middle name, or even a term loosely associated with me, but this is not only MY house. I have a husband, who on many more than one occasion has commented on how much more relaxed he is in a clean house. So should I not do my best to do my part in keeping it that way?? I have been abundantly blessed with a husband who more often than not will use his day off from working to clean the house.

Perhaps I am lazy. But this I will find a way to overcome. I need to. It must be done.

On that note, I'm going to change the laundry and finish cleaning the kitchen/dining room.

Saturday, December 13, 2008


Just when I was wondering what I could possibly blog about as often as I promised yesterday, life came along and is doing its job of filling in. First thing this morning, Jer and I were able to share in a moment together -- huddled on the ground, pushed as far under the car as we could manage, attempting to bunji cord the otherwise detached exhaust up high enough to not scratch the pavement the entire way to the shop... As we expected, "Mike" was very surprised that we would have such a problem with an '07 Taurus. Now we are awaiting the phone call with the estimate on cost so we can decide if we should just let them take care of it or have it towed across town to Family Ford where they will hopefully honour our warranty...

Sometimes being a one car family is interesting... Anyone want to give us a ride to church in the morning??

Friday, December 12, 2008


Based on a recent phone conversation with my sister, I decided to come out of the world of hiding. Basically, she told me (via phone message because I didn't get to the phone) that she was going to start having Jeremiah take a picture of me every day with the newspaper so that she knows I"m still alive. Apparently, I'm not very good at keeping in touch with anyone, so no one should feel offended -- it's not just you!!

But that said, I'm going to start blogging more. I can't promise it will be exciting, but I will do my best to blog at least 4 times a week for the next 8 weeks. That's 32 posts in 56 days. That's pretty decent considering my last post was mid August.

That said -- here's an update.

1- I no longer hate my job. It has taken some twists and turns and is still not my dream job, but my responsibilities have increased and I no longer feel like I'm wasting everyone's time (including my own). That said, however, the same week that I started enjoying my job (more on how that came about another day), my hours got cut from 40 to 30. Then this past week, they were cut from 30 to 25... makes budgeting interesting......

2- The babies from the post before the job post have been born! Seth Daniel MacGillivary is alive and well in Nova Scotia. I get to meet him in just 13 short days!! Yay for Christmas with family! Mathias William Bonner came a couple weeks early to very excited mommy and daddy, Jeremiah's sister and her husband. After a couple extra days in the hospital, he is home and doing very well. No plans in the making to meet him yet, but the day will come!!!!! From what I've seen, he's another precious little bundle!

3- WE HAVE FRIENDS! Haha, that sounds so lame. But it's true! In fact, in a couple minutes I have to cut this post short because I need to freshen up as I'm "going out with the girls" for some drinks this evening (Yummy hot chai tea.... MMmmmmm!!) We've become really good friends with our neighbours and our dogs have fallen in love -- YIKES!

4- Christmas is coming. My house feels festive. Outside is not very festive at all. It has rained for the last three days. The day before yesterday was 62 degrees outside, and Monday is supposed to be in the 50s again. Good thing we're going to Ontario for Christmas or I might not get any home made ice cream this year!!

5- More will have to wait for other days.

My puppy says hello.

Thursday, August 21, 2008


To have a job which one cared about would be grand.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

2.5 hours and counting :)

2.5 hours and counting until we hit the road and head north. Puppy has his shots and records, Jeremiah has his passport, I have my green card. OH -- that reminds me, I need to find the stuff that I need to apply for a new Canadian passport while I am there... Hmmm.. now where did I put that envelope....

Anyway, off for a week of family and fun. You won't hear from me until I get back - i'm leaving my computer here.

I probably won't do much eating while we're away... my tongue has once again birthed a second tongue... Yes, you heard me correctly, I once again have 2 tongues. This time I'm going to do something about it though!! I have a doctors appointment when I get back and I'm going to request and see what he says to taking out the salivary gland (I have a salivary gland stone.. again...) Enough is enough. I have 6, surely I can do fine with 5!!!!!

Enough gross talk. I'm OUT!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

It's a Girl!

It's a GIRL!!

I'm proud to announce the arrival of

Baby Zida-Brown

Name: ~TBD~

Birth Date: July 30, 2008

Birth Time:2:54 am

Height: 20.5 inches

Weight: 7 lbs 11 oz

This is my newest niece. I haven't met her yet because she is in Seattle, but I know I will love her just the same! I've talked to mommy a couple times today, but she was pretty tired (see time of birth...) Now if only Jaymie will have hers then maybe it will be my turn to give this whole pregnancy thing a try... hehe. Don't hold your breathe just yet!!!

Nieces and Nephews to date:

Emily (9) - (Krista's #1, my sister)
Marc (6) (Anthony's #1, Jer's brother)
Isaac (4) - (Krista's #2, my sister)
Naima (2) - (Gina's #1, my sister)
Jake (2) - (Krista's #3, my sister)
Laurel (2) - (Anthony's #2, Jer's brother)
new baby in Seattle (very young) - (Gina's #2, my sister)
to come baby in Antigonish (not yet breathing air - due in Aug) - (Jaymie's #1, my sister)
to come baby in Tucson (not yet breathing air - due in Dec) - (Christian's #1,Jer's sister)

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

The Donkey

Young Chuck, moved to Texas and bought a donkey from a farmer for $100.00.
The farmer agreed to deliver the donkey the next day. The next day he drove up and said, 'Sorry son, but I have some bad news, the donkey died.'

Chuck replied, 'Well, then just give me my money back.'

The farmer said, 'Can't do that. I went and spent it already.'

Chuck said, 'Ok, then, just bring me the dead donkey.'

The farmer asked, 'What ya gonna do with him?

Chuck said, 'I'm going to raffle him off.'

The farmer said, 'You can't raffle off a dead donkey!'

Chuck said, 'Sure I can Watch me. I just won't tell anybody he's dead.'

A month later, the farmer met up with Chuck and asked, 'What happened with that dead donkey?'

Chuck said, 'I raffled him off. I sold 500 tickets at two dollars a piece and made a profit of $898.00.'

The farmer said, 'Didn't anyone complain?'

Chuck said, 'Just the guy who won. So I gave him his two dollars back.'

Chuck grew up and now works for the government.

Monday, July 28, 2008

my newest CVS adventure

I think I've posted about my fun at CVS before, but in case I haven't, that's the store I like to go to, buy lots of stuff, and pay next to nothing.  For example, here's my trip on Saturday:
I hadn't been in awhile, so my Extra Care Bucks were expiring and I had to use them all.  I had $13.98 in those.
I bought: 
4 bottles of Pro Vive shampoo - $4.99 each
8 packs of a new Trident gum - $1.49 each
1 bottle KY jelly - $12.49
2 five packs CVS tampons - $1.49 each
2 packs CVS liners - $.89 each
 I used:
a $5 off $30 purchase coupon
$2 of KY
2 $1 off 3 packs of gum
and 2 BOGO Pro Vive coupons.
The Pro Vive was on sale BOGO
The gum was on sale BOGO
I used the $13.98 in ECB
I paid $.23 out of pocket!  And they gave me about $9.00 back in ECBs :)
Ready for my next trip!!!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Washing Machines and Cell Phones

Unfortunately this is not a two part post.  It's about washing machines and cell phones... and how they don't play well together...
Needless to say, ONE for the washing machine and ZERO for the cell phone.
If anyone wants to contact me, email it is!!!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

She Speaks!

A couple months ago, I learned about a very cool website called "". It is an online community for women (sorry guys!) to try new products and let their voices be heard! I had my doubts at first, but recently was invited to take part in a trial for Garnier Nutrioniste's Anti-Puff Eye Roller.

As for the product, I love it! After only one day of trying it, my eye feels refreshed and less "tired". (I say "eye" because I am doing an experiment with one eye to see what the results really are. Hopefully, if all goes well, Jeremiah will be able to tell in a week or so which eye I am testing the roller on -- I'll keep you posted). Call me crazy, but I could feel the difference right away when I tried it.

Enough about the product itself though. What I really wanted to talk about in this blog was the website itself! I had my doubts about it when I read about it on another blog, but figured there was no harm in giving it a shot. So I signed up (for free, of course) and received my first invitation (a month or so later). That's it. Full size "sample" of whatever it is they ask you to test, and you get to keep it at the end. All you have to do is use the website to tell them what you thought. The more you use the website, the better your "relationship" with them is, and the more they can offer you invitations specific to your own lifestyle. Apparently, they test everything from books to beauty samples (like my eye roller) to baby strollers to KitchenAid mixers etc etc etc.
So far, two thumbs up from me! I can't wait to see what they offer me to test next. Just so you know, I'll test just about anything that is free!!!

Is anyone else out there a member of If you are let me know! If you sign up, let me know! There's no benefit to me if you sign up, but I'd love to share the benefits of the site with you!!

(US residents only, sorry Canadian friends..)

Friday, July 11, 2008

I need your help - HAIR CUTS

I'm dying to do something to my hair but I can't find any do's that I want to do.  Does anyone have any ideas/pictures of any hair dos that you have seen and/or had that you absolutely loved.  Here's the criteria
- has to be easy (I'm pretty much 100% hair incompetent
- has to work with relatively thick hair. 
- can be any length from short to shoulder length (since that's where my hair is now)
Send photos (or links to them!) so that I can see what they look like. 
THANKS FOR YOUR HELP!!!  may the best hair-do win!!!

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Preciousness Exposed

Two of my sisters and one sister-in-law are pregnant and I guess I got jealous.....

So we got a puppy!!!!!

Meet Shalom. Our newest bundle of joy!!!

But no, I'm not pregnant. For now, I'll just love on my boys!!!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Congratulations! You've won...

I would say in the last month or so, I have probably entered 50-75+ contests/sweepstakes for everything from a $5 gift card to a $28 grilling set to a $1400 treadmill to a vacation package for 6 to Puerto Rico.  What did I win?  A sample pair of Hanes Her Way hipster underwear. In white. Everyone's favourite. Jeremiah's response:  "Way to go - now we've lost all chances of winning anything good cause you wasted our luck on underwear" (not word for word, but you get the drift.)
Jeremiah enters one lousy contest -- a link he found while browsing through the website.  Yesterday, he received a voicemail and an email saying "CONGRATULATIONS! You are our first place winner! You've won..." blah blah blah...
SO WE WON!! We're on our way to a three day, two night vacation for 2 to Fairfax, Virginia, complements of the Virginia Tourism department.  We fly from Harrisburg to Dulles, get a three day car rental, 2 nights stay at the Crowne Plaza Tyson Corner hotel , get a nice supper out on Saturday night, free breakfasts at the hotel, and 2 tickets to see Les Miserables at Wolf Trap!!
Check out the details for yourself at
YAY Jeremiah!!!
(And don't worry -- I'll continue to enter any contest I come across!)

Thursday, June 5, 2008

It's here!

You've waited with bated breathe. Now here it is. Enjoy the virtual tour, and when you're ready, jump in the car and swing by for the real thing!! Serious!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Pictures to come!

Hey! For those who are wondering where we are living now, pictures are to come very soon!!!  The house is pretty much put together (just need to get some pictures up on the walls!). We are LOVING it!!! Oh my goodness, we are so blessed.  Despite the fact that the bills are pushed tighter together than ever, we feel so rich and blessed.  God is good!!! 
Now that I said pictures are coming, hold me to it!!  We've meant to take them a couple of times and it hasn't happened!!!  Tonight we'll straighten up and by tomorrow, pictures!  Ok???

Friday, May 16, 2008

It's closing day!!!!!

...and it's pouring rain!!!

Closing day on our house is TODAY!!! YAHOO!!!!  That means we move tomorrow (and lose the apartment as of Monday. Here's to hoping the 50% chance of rain for tomorrow holds off because we have to do it anyway... we'll just probably lose most of our help!!!

Here are some things that I will NOT miss about the apartment:

1- No more squeaky floors! (house has cement floors, no squeaking!)
2- No more worrying about scaring the downstairs neighbour to death by
dropping something (she's really sensitive -- we really may have scared her
to death!) --
3- No more stairs to the doorway! (house is completely one story living)
4- No more parking under a tree and being constantly speckled with
"helicopters" and bird doo! (house has a garage)
5- No more road being flooded when it rains (while this was amusing, it will
be nice to know we can get out -- even in the rain!)
6- No more laundry in the kitchen! (house has a laundry room with a door and
everything! no more dust in my kitchen appliances!)
7- No more running toilet every 20 minutes! (the apartment toilet needs new inards but we never had them come to do it)
8- No more having to remember to touch the dial on the dishwasher when it gets to the rinse cycle (at the apartment, the dishwasher is broken. It stops at Rinse and you have to nudge the button.  They are replacing it as soon as we're gone -- could have been a couple weeks ago, but we didn't want the hassle. We just ran it when we were home to "help it along"
7- I wish I could say no more ugly couch, but we've had to put buying a new
one on hold indefinitely. It'll come -- in its time.

We're pretty excited about the move (can you tell???)

Tuesday, May 6, 2008


WOW!! The 10 day countdown has begun!!! I cannot believe it is happening so fast! (or that there is still so much to do!!!)
Of course, we've continued to peak in the windows...
The kitchen cupboards are in (bonus)
There is a fan in the living room as there should be (and the one they hung in the wrong place is still there... hmmmm... think it's too much of a bother to take it down??? I am fine with them leaving it there...)
The tile is down and grouted (spelling?) in the entry way.
The vinyl flooring is down in kitchen/dining room, laundry room and bathrooms
Grass is growing (and so are a few weeds.. think they'll take care of this before closing???)
Stuff we know is still to come:
Sinks in kitchen and bathrooms
Bathroom paraphenalia (rods, towel racks, tp roll holder, etc)
Closet/laundry room shelving
Installation of appliances
spot painting (a couple spots they cut through drywall never got repainted properly)
Switch out door to green door
Hang shutters
Clean sticker gook off windows
Mark backyard
I'm sure there is more that we cannot see from our window vantage point.  Hopefully 8 days is long enough to get it all done :) We do the final walk-through on Wednesday!!!

Monday, April 21, 2008

CVS for good :)

My CVS savings have been used for good already!  Hooray!!  I've told my husband to make sure that if I begin stockpiling too much, I am giving away what we can't reasonably use (our new home does not have a great deal of storage space).  Well, I've had opportunity to share my good fortune already.  Yesterday, it rained HARD where I live and our street flooded.  My guesstimate would be that it was a good 1.5-2 feet at its deepest points.  At first, cars were trying to get through it, until eventually the police got there and wouldn't allow anyone through.  Unfortunately for my new "friend", they didn't get there before she tried to get her little car across.  It got water logged and shut off mid "puddle."  We were watching the excitement from our second floor apartment window, and saw another couple of people help push her out of the road and into our parking lot.  I overheard them talking and heard her say that she had friends just up the street and she would call them.  So I didn't worry about her. She was taken care of. 
20 minutes later, rain harder, thunder and lightning louder, I realized she was still sitting out there in her car!  I told my husband I was going to see if she wanted to come up and dry off while she waited for whomever she was waiting.  Poor girl, when I got there, she was streaming tears, talking to her dad on the phone.  I'm very glad I did not assume she was taken care of.  She came up, calmed down, and dried off.  It was a good 45 minutes before her parents got there to get her and see what they could do about the car.  Unfortunately, it still wouldn't start, so she borrowed our internet to find some phone numbers for road side assistance and was on her way...
But not until I gave her a big bag of M&Ms to melt her troubles away :)  Haha, I know it was small and didn't REALLY do anything to fix the situation, but it brought a smile to her face!  I'm glad we were able to be there for her, even if it was just a warm/dry place with tasty M&Ms while she waited for "real help" to arrive :) 

Friday, April 18, 2008

CVS and Walmart

Next time, I promise I'll write something interesting. For now, more deal pictures.

$0.29 cents. I swear. That's it. and I still have $3 in ECBs to roll for next week.

This isn't AS free... $6.76... But not bad for $23.38 worth of stuff :) And mostly because the Noxzema wasn't on sale, we just needed it. I have yet to see a coupon for it -- but I will continue to look!!!
4 weeks until we close on the house!!! There is still SOOOO much for them to do. I sure hope they finish it up on time because if we don't close that day, our financing falls through... Pray for us!!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Ok - so my math was a little off...

I guess I did a couple mistakes in my math before heading to the store. Here's what I ended up with:

2 Sunsilk shampoos ($3.49 each)
2 Dove shampoos (3.99 each)
1 Sunsilk Styling Aid ($3.49)
5 24-piece excedrins ($1.99 each)
2 Tru Blend Cover Girl Foundations ($9.49)
1 Breath Savers ($1.50)
2 large Hershey chocolate bars ($1.79 each)
1 Stride gum ($1.19)

Total cost out of pocket: $1.51.

And I came home with $5 in ECB to boot.


Anyone wanna play???

(Hopefully something for men will be on sale next week...)

.... and all because I was out of shampoo.... this is really going to help the budget!!

If all works out properly this time

I've found a new game.  It's called "shopping at CVS."  It's a great game. The goal of the game is to use coupons and see how cheap (or how free) you can get stuff. 
Last night, I "played' and the first step went very well. I bought 5 boxes of Excedrin and paid ---- $0!!!!  Yup!  They were on sale for $1.99 and I had $2.00 off coupons!! So I got my limit (5 per household)  Best part, they have certain sales that give you "cash" on a card that can only be used at CVS.  So  these 5 boxes of Excedrin that I bought for free put $5 on my Extra rewards card :) 
Step 2 fell apart because the item that I wanted to buy was not in stock in either CVS store here.  So I went home determined to figure it out again.  And I believe I have.  If any "CVS-ers" are reading this, PLEASE give me feedback if you see something that is not working or if you know of a coupon to make it even better!!!
Step #1:
2 Tru Blend Foundation 9.49 each
Filler of some sort (hopefully going to find a filler with a coupon) - at least 1.02.  Basing my scenario on $1.50
Total purchase:  $20.48
Use: $4/$20 coupon                                                 -$4.00
        Cover Girl Buy One Get One Free coupon          -$9.49
        $1 coupon                                                       -$1.00
        $5 Extra Care Bucks that I earned from Excedrin. -$5.00
New Total: $0.99!!! out of pocket  (less if a good filler is found)
Get $6 ECB for each tru blend foundation (april deal)  = $12 ECB
Step #2 (new transaction):
3 Sunsilk Shampoo/styling aid 3.49 each
2 Dove Shampoo @ 3.99 each
filler (hopefully filler with a coupon) - at least $1.45 - Basing my scenario on $1.50
Total purchase:
Use: $4/$20 coupon                                                      -$4.00
        Buy One Get One Free on sunsilk coupon              -$3.49
        $1.50 sunsilk coupon                                            -$1.50
        $3/2 dove coupon                                                  -$3.00
        Use one $6 ECB coupon                                       -$6.00
New Total:
$2.06!!!!!!  out of pocket (less if find a good filler with coupon)
Plus, get $5 for spending $15 on Sunsilk/Dove
that leaves me with $11 ECB in my pocket plus only spending $3.05 for everything you see above. 
Anyone else want to play???
Special thanks to the numerous websites that have helped me figure out how to make this work!!  I'll give some props to them in a future blog entry!  You don't even know who you are, but you've been a HUGE help to our budget!!!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

43 days and falling :)

Signed, sealed, not quite yet delivered...  the house is ours!
Despite the fact that we had to drop me off the mortgage paperwork due to not enough American credit (thus read as "bad credit" by anyone in the money business), our mortgage loan was approved!  43 days from now, we'll be pdragging boxes downstairs, throwing them in the truck and driving them the whole 2.5 miles to our new home (hardly seems worth it to pack the truck - but Jeremiah says he's not helping me carry everything over!!!)
As far as we know, we have only one more store to stop at to finish picking stuff out for. This time for things like kitchen/bathroom faucets, toilets, bathroom sinks, etc.  If it's like last Saturdays stop at Yale (lighting/fan fixtures), it'll be 5 minutes in and out :)  We're not really interested in doing any upgrades that we'll actually have to pay for. We would just like to see what standard pieces are so that we can switch it out if we say "ew -- that's gross" (like we did with the yucky bronze plated chandelier they wanted to hang in our dining room--- EEEEWIE!!!)
On top of it all, we're thinking about getting a puppy :) That is, if we can agree on a name (better to get the disagreements over with on a dog and then nail it out of the park by agreeing when we try to name kids, right???)  *I* would like to get the puppy soon (like before we move into the house) -- that way, he can pee on the apartment carpet instead of our new carpet!!!  I'm such a scheemer......
That's it for today.  And don't forget to scroll down and register for the Phil and Ted stroller contest.  Leave my name in their so I better my chances to win a stroller that as of yet I do not need!!!! :)

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

No, I'm not pregnant

But who doesn't want to win a free Phil and Ted's Sport Buggy for the future???

Click the link below to enter to win! You can enter more than once (once a week, I believe)

Leave the "dealsnmoredeals" address in the referred email slot and I'll get my name put in again for referring you!! Don't forget about your extra entries by referring!!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

The Waiting Game

We are still waiting to hear about approval of financing on our house.  We should be hearing any day but every day seems like an eternity when you're waiting for the phone to ring:)  If all goes well, move in day is 7 weeks from Friday!
Will keep you posted!

Saturday, March 22, 2008

and you thought I was only gone a couple days...

When I signed off blogger, facebook, and msn a few days ago, I believe the house countdown as at 104.  Well, now I’m back (but determinedly cutting back “screen time” long term) and the count down is at 55!!!   We think. 


Due to some changes in the market, our closing date had to pop back by 6 weeks in order to get the financing that we needed to make the house possible.  That’s cool cause we get to move in in mid-May instead of the end of August. But it’s scary as anything because that’s 3 paychecks early and we won’t be quite as comfortable as we once thought..


We know God has led in this, so if it goes through (the financing could still fall through – we’ll know by late this week), we’ll know that he is continuing to lead and we’ll be ok.  If it falls through, we will also consider it a blessing because other things will be possible. 


Here’s to having a Saviour who goes through the “tough stuff” of life with you!!!



Tuesday, March 18, 2008


Jeremiah and I are "turning off the screens" for the rest of the week. So if you need to get ahold of us or get a message to us, email or facebook will not be the way to do it :)  We'll see you on the flipside! 
And in the meantime, don't forget that your Redeemer Lives!!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Newberry awards

I love children's literature.  Above that, I love award winning children's literature.  In college, my room mate Alison and I would read to each other before going to sleep almost every night. (Then she would stay up hours later than I would and I would talk to her in my sleep -- but that's another blog altogether!)

I decided then that, in hopes that my children will love to read as much as I do, I will buy them the Newberry award winner each year.  I haven't looked at as many of the Caldecott winners (the younger award books), but I can see getting those as well.

Below is a list of all the Newberry Award winners since they began awarding it in 1922.  The RED ones I have read. The BLUE ones I will commit to reading this year. The GREEN I may have read as a child but am unsure. The rest, I would like to work my way back through eventually (to a point anyway.)

--Side note-- There are not as many reds as I thought there would be.  I had better change that!

2008: Good Masters! Sweet Ladies! Voices from a Medieval Village by Laura Amy Schlitz (Candlewick)
2007: The Higher Power of Lucky by Susan Patron, illus. by Matt Phelan (Simon & Schuster/Richard Jackson)
2006: Criss Cross by Lynne Rae Perkins (Greenwillow Books/HarperCollins)
2005: Kira-Kira by Cynthia Kadohata (Atheneum Books for Young Readers/Simon & Schuster)
2004: The Tale of Despereaux: Being the Story of a Mouse, a Princess, Some Soup, and a Spool of Thread by Kate DiCamillo (Candlewick Press) 
2003: Crispin: The Cross of Lead by Avi (Hyperion Books for Children) 
2002: A Single Shard by Linda Sue Park(Clarion Books/Houghton Mifflin) 
2001: A Year Down Yonder by Richard Peck (Dial) 
2000: Bud, Not Buddy by Christopher Paul Curtis (Delacorte) 
1999: Holes by Louis Sachar (Frances Foster) 
1998: Out of the Dust by Karen Hesse (Scholastic) 
1997: The View from Saturday by E.L. Konigsburg (Jean Karl/Atheneum)

1996: The Midwife's Apprentice by Karen Cushman (Clarion)
1995: Walk Two Moons by Sharon Creech (HarperCollins)
1994: The Giver by Lois Lowry(Houghton)
1993: Missing May by Cynthia Rylant (Jackson/Orchard)
1992: Shiloh by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor (Atheneum)
1991: Maniac Magee by Jerry Spinelli (Little, Brown)

1990: Number the Stars by Lois Lowry (Houghton)
1989: Joyful Noise: Poems for Two Voices by Paul Fleischman (Harper)
1988: Lincoln: A Photobiography by Russell Freedman (Clarion)
1987: The Whipping Boy by Sid Fleischman (Greenwillow)
1986: Sarah, Plain and Tall by Patricia MacLachlan (Harper)
1985: The Hero and the Crown by Robin McKinley (Greenwillow)
1984: Dear Mr. Henshaw by Beverly Cleary (Morrow)
1983: Dicey's Song by Cynthia Voigt (Atheneum)
1982: A Visit to William Blake's Inn: Poems for Innocent and Experienced Travelers by Nancy Willard (Harcourt)
1981: Jacob Have I Loved by Katherine Paterson (Crowell)
1980: A Gathering of Days: A New England Girl's Journal, 1830-1832 by Joan W. Blos (Scribner)
1979: The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin (Dutton)
1978: Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson (Crowell)
1977: Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry by Mildred D. Taylor (Dial)
1976: The Grey King by Susan Cooper (McElderry/Atheneum)
1975: M. C. Higgins, the Great by Virginia Hamilton (Macmillan)
1974: The Slave Dancer by Paula Fox (Bradbury)
1973: Julie of the Wolves by Jean Craighead George (Harper)
1972: Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH by Robert C. O'Brien (Atheneum)
1971: Summer of the Swans by Betsy Byars (Viking)
1970: Sounder by William H. Armstrong (Harper)
1969: The High King by Lloyd Alexander (Holt)
1968: From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konigsburg (Atheneum)
1967: Up a Road Slowly by Irene Hunt (Follett)
1966: I, Juan de Pareja by Elizabeth Borton de Trevino (Farrar)
1965: Shadow of a Bull by Maia Wojciechowska (Atheneum)
1964: It's Like This, Cat by Emily Neville (Harper)
1963: A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle (Farrar)
1962: The Bronze Bow by Elizabeth George Speare (Houghton)
1961: Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O'Dell (Houghton)
1960: Onion John by Joseph Krumgold (Crowell)
1959: The Witch of Blackbird Pond by Elizabeth George Speare (Houghton)
1958: Rifles for Watie by Harold Keith (Crowell)
1957: Miracles on Maple Hill by Virginia Sorensen (Harcourt)
1956: Carry On, Mr. Bowditch by Jean Lee Latham (Houghton)
1955: The Wheel on the School by Meindert DeJong (Harper)
1954: ...And Now Miguel by Joseph Krumgold (Crowell)
1953: Secret of the Andes by Ann Nolan Clark (Viking)
1952: Ginger Pye by Eleanor Estes (Harcourt)
1951: Amos Fortune, Free Man by Elizabeth Yates (Dutton)
1950: The Door in the Wall by Marguerite de Angeli (Doubleday)
1949: King of the Wind by Marguerite Henry (Rand McNally)
1948: The Twenty-One Balloons by William Pène du Bois (Viking)
1947: Miss Hickory by Carolyn Sherwin Bailey (Viking)
1946: Strawberry Girl by Lois Lenski (Lippincott)
1945: Rabbit Hill by Robert Lawson (Viking)
1944: Johnny Tremain by Esther Forbes (Houghton)
1943: Adam of the Road by Elizabeth Janet Gray (Viking)
1942: The Matchlock Gun by Walter Edmonds (Dodd)
1941: Call It Courage by Armstrong Sperry (Macmillan)
1940: Daniel Boone by James Daugherty (Viking)
1939: Thimble Summer by Elizabeth Enright (Rinehart)
1938: The White Stag by Kate Seredy (Viking)
1937: Roller Skates by Ruth Sawyer (Viking)
1936: Caddie Woodlawn by Carol Ryrie Brink (Macmillan)
1935: Dobry by Monica Shannon (Viking)
1934: Invincible Louisa: The Story of the Author of Little Women by Cornelia Meigs (Little, Brown)
1933: Young Fu of the Upper Yangtze by Elizabeth Lewis (Winston)
1932: Waterless Mountain by Laura Adams Armer (Longmans)
1931: The Cat Who Went to Heaven by Elizabeth Coatsworth (Macmillan)
1930: Hitty, Her First Hundred Years by Rachel Field (Macmillan)
1929: The Trumpeter of Krakow by Eric P. Kelly (Macmillan)
1928: Gay Neck, the Story of a Pigeon by Dhan Gopal Mukerji (Dutton)
1927: Smoky, the Cowhorse by Will James (Scribner)
1926: Shen of the Sea by Arthur Bowie Chrisman (Dutton)
1925: Tales from Silver Lands by Charles Finger (Doubleday)
1924: The Dark Frigate by Charles Hawes (Little, Brown)
1923: The Voyages of Doctor Dolittle by Hugh Lofting (Stokes)
1922: The Story of Mankind by Hendrik Willem van Loon (Liveright)

Monday, March 3, 2008

FW: Creativity --- not!

My creativity is lacking. I thought I used to have some, but I think I left it along the way somewhere. I am great at solving problems, love my job fixing IT stuff, but that takes no creativity (except being creative to figure out what the problem is.)  Creating, on the other hand, is not my forte.  I'm supposed to be creating brochures.  I am supposed to be working on an ad campaign. I am totally out of my element.  It just looks like words on a page.  Was I ever creative?  Did I have it and lose it?  If I did, can I get it back?  Or was it not mine to begin with??? 
Yours, uncreatively.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Home, Sweet Home :)

On Saturday, Jer and I "visited" our home. Shhh....
Here are some pictures that we took while we were there. Welcome to our new home :)

A peak through the house from the living room.

The dining room on the left and the kitchen on the right
(with the master bedroom in behind)

Jer standing by the front coat closet.

Master Bedroom

Guest Bedroom

Master Closet

me and Jer enjoying our adventure together

Me taking a shower in our new master shower.
Finally, a showerhead that is above Jer's head!!

The weird hot water heater "Octopus"
Each line is for a different element of the house.
No more stolen hot water!!

All recessed lighting!

The garage sans door and bricking.

Home, Sweet Home! 130 days until closing!!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

June 27th!

June 27th is the big day --- it's MOVING DAY!!!

The deed has been done. We met with the realtor last night. We signed the necessary paperwork, we listened to the necessary stories, we took the paper signing pictures... now we wait.

Well, now we wait and choose stuff. I can't wait to choose stuff. <<Raises a glass>> Here's to choosing stuff! Pictures to come!

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Contracts and snow ... finally!

Tonight at 6:00pm, Jeremiah and I will be driving to the Summerfield development where we will be writing up and signing a contract for our brand new house!  Once that is under our belts, it will be time to tell the electrician where to put the electrical outlets etc, time to pick flooring, countertops, cupboards, appliances, lighting, etc and all the other fun stuff that comes with having a house built.
It is so incredible to think that our first home will be a brand new home that no one else has ever lived in before. We do not have to worry about what is in the carpet from the last owners, how much longer the old furnace is going to last, how much life the shingles have left before we need a new roof, etc etc etc. There will be no unremoveable furniture markings on the carpets, stains on the sink/countertops, or someone else's hair to clean out of the drains (ew!)
We are so blessed. We pray and thank God every day, then we ask Him to go before us and keep our path straight. We so do not want to walk into anything that is not His will for our lives. 
Tonight we'll decide on a closing date. Should be in mid June, I believe.  If the months keep going like January did, that'll be here before we know it!!
Oh - and we got snow --- finally!  Funny though, seems like I am the only one who is even remotely happy to see it.   Looks like I'll get a good chance to experience snow at home in March too :)  Hooray!! (for snow and for going home!)

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Confirm Receipt..................Dear winner!!!

Hahaha --- spam bloggers???? I got an email saying that I blogged. i came to my blog and found this! GOODNESS -- who ever heard of spam bloggers?? not commenters, but they infiltrated my BLOG!! Guess it's time to change the address that I use to email blog messages to my blog.... Anyone want to accept my "winnings??"


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Friday, February 8, 2008


There is now a house in Carlisle that has a tentative "reserved for Jeremiah and Sarah" sign on it (figuratively).  I say tentative because, as of yet, we have not SEEN the house.  GRRR...
Our walk-through fell through yesterday afternoon.  It wasn't really the realtors fault, but it's hard to not want to blame someone. They have only one model home, which is bigger than the style we are interested in.  To see the others, realtors have to set up appointments with people who live in one and walk buyers through those.  So he set up our appointment, we got there, and he told us he had been trying to get ahold of this guy and, despite saying he would be home all day, he was not there :(  We hung out in the model for a few, hoping he might get home, but then I had to leave to get back to work.  Since I was "playing Georgia" (exec assistant), I couldn't be late getting back. 
So, since he didn't want the house to be bought from under our noses, Hayden (realtor) called the office and "put our names on the house."  We now have til Monday with no worries about someone else sneaking in with a different realtor and snatching it up. 
Here's hoping he can get an appointment set up on Sunday afternoon!! 

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Here we go!!

Here we go Loop-di-loo
Here we go Loop-di-li
Here we go Loop-di-loo
All on a (Thursday afternoon!)
Jeremiah and I are on our way to walk through what could potentially be our new house (or one like it anyway) as soon as he gets here to pick me up. We are both pretty excited!!  It is really quite hard to believe that even after looking at numbers, we are seriously looking at purchasing our very own, no-one-has-ever-lived-in-it-before, built-to-taste (or at least built how we want them to -- not too many upgrades though!) HOME!  WOWSERS!!
I'm playing Executive Assistant today (Georgia is away), so I probably won't update until I get home tonight, but you'll be hearing from me! 
Wish us luck! AHHHHH -- so excited

Wednesday, February 6, 2008


We're doing a walk-through in a house tomorrow at 1:00!  Cross your fingers and pray that all goes as it should!!!

Monday, February 4, 2008


1- I can't believe it is February.  2 months and 3 days until Jer and I have been married a year and a half.
2- For Valentine's Day, my desired gift list includes a couch, a fridge, and a house.  All of which are on their way to being chosen currently :)
3- It's incredible to even be thinking about buying a house and, after looking at finances, still feel it is a feasible venture!
4- The ghost shrimp have still not shown up.  But I'm not afraid.  I've decided even if they are in my house somewhere, we can co-habitate quite happily. 
5- The guppies should have babies between Friday and Sunday... Here's hoping we can catch the mommies in time to keep the fries from being lunch.
6- We had a church special meeting last night about hiring on an assistant pastor at the church.  This is the first I've mentioned this because it was to be brought to the church congregation first, but I'm sure we'll talk more about it after the vote (Feb 17) and as it progresses.
7- I love our town. If you feel the need to visit a little town that is fantastic but that is low key and somewhat unknown, come visit us!!  We've got the best coffee house in town, excellent small town restaurants, Christian concerts galore (in a couple hour radius anyway), and of course, you'd get to visit us. 
8- Jeremiah is on his way to get measured for Justin's wedding in May.  So awesome :)  I'm glad it happened for you, Justin!
Have a great and blessed Monday.

Thursday, January 31, 2008

Ghost Shrimp

Jeremiah and I refilled our fish tank a couple weeks ago and got some pretty fun fish to watch swim around. However, we also got three "Ghost Shrimp."

As you can see from the picture, they get their name from being very transparent and, thus, hard to see. You see, I thought they would enjoy life on the bottom of the tank and would be fun to watch and hunt for etc. No no no... They don't stay on the bottom and they are not fun to hunt for!!! The first couple of days, I would see them "swim" up about 4 or 5 inches, and then they would crash down to the bottom. Then over the next few days, I saw them make trips to the very top, hang out for awhile, and only then swim back down.

You don't see the problem here?? In case you can't tell in the picture, they have legs!!! If they can get TO the top, they can probably crawl OUT the top. EW EW EW EW EW!!!

So here's the thing. Every time I walk by the tank, I have to get down and find all three Ghost Shrimp before I can walk away satisfied that they are all still in there. This morning, I spent about 5 minutes looking for them and still can't find them. If they are still missing by the time I get home from work, it will most definitely be vacuum night and disinfectant night!!

I'll tell you one thing, after these three shrimp are gone, there will be no more ghost shrimp living in our tank!!

UPDATE: It's the next day (Friday morning), and even after much searching last night and this morning, there is no sign of the three missing ghost shrimps. I'm sorry - but that's really disgusting!

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

I got my hair cut

Pictures to come when and if I decide I like it :)

Monday, January 28, 2008


It's about freaking time. 
1-  The Lagoon kicked off on Jan 13 and has been going well!  We had 5 kids each of the first 2 weeks (made up of 7 different kids), and 8 yesterday (including 2 more new kids)!  These are not new kids. They have interacted with the church before but never in any kind of consistent manner. 
        - 1 is a sixth grade boy who used to get dropped off most Sundays and then spends the afternoon with a couple from church.
        - 2 are friends of boy above
        - 3 are kids who are part of our church family but with their parents work were very irregular.  (they've been there all three weeks!)
        - 1 is the grandson of the volunteer helping to run the ministry
        - 1 is a sixth grade girl who finds everything "boring" but has come back twice
        - 1 is a teen volunteer leader who, as we start, is more or less taking part but will open up to newer and broader ways to help as we progress. 
Praise Yahweh for His faithfulness in this new ministry!
2- Still no snow to speak of :(   Guess I have to pray harder
3- People here would kill me if I prayed harder.
4- Two of my sisters are pregnant and I've been so "busy" that I haven't talked to either of them in almost a month (shame on me!!!)
5- We are having a special meeting after church next Sunday to introduce and vote on a new adventure in faith for the church.  To many people, it will seem to be coming from left field, but the board and Jeremiah have been praying long and hard and feel this is the correct direction for the church to make at this time.  Hopefully, with Jeremiah's ability to explain, people will see the benefits and how God has already gone before us.
6- Jeremiah and I are more and more convinced every day that this is the place that God has called us for this point of our ministry.  It's far from a perfect location, but the potential is so great. As long as we can get the church to not only believe in their potential but to grow in it as well.
7- We have an appointment right after work today to get pre-approved to buy a house.  Scary?  YES! Exciting? YES!  Fathomable? We sure hope so!  We've already been watching the market for a while now and are terribly excited about the possibility of being first time home owners.
8- I want to go to Hawaii someday.  Rumour has it my husband considered making it happen at Valentine's Day, but the budget was just not going to give right now.  We are trying our hardest to get out of debt and it just didn't seem like the right time to double what's left!
9- Based on some money coming back to us, we should be out of credit card debt in approx a month and a half!! HIP HIP HOORAY!!!
10- I had some doctor's appointments lately and it seems like I'm perfectly normal. HA!  Little do they know!
That's enough boring stats for one day. 
11- Oh, I'm terribly behind in my 2008 in 2008. Good thing there was Arizona at the beginning of the month!!! I'll get some posted soon, promise!!! (Some taken, just  not off the camera yet)

Friday, January 18, 2008

But... I Can Still See the Grass..... A Lesson in Perspective

Ok. So we got "snow" last night. A whole whomping inch and a half (MAYBE!)  with a touch of ice rain (not enough to need a scraper this morning).  But you wouldn't BELIEVE the school closures and the late school starts!  EVERY school around is delayed by at least an hour, SOME by two hours, and some are CLOSED.  It bewilders me what would happen if they got real snow here. AN INCH AND A HALF, PEOPLE! And the roads are clear!  I can still see the grass, people!!
(Complete side note: I forgot the comma in that last sentence, and it made me look like I believe in "grass people" - hehe)
Anyway, in Maine/Ontario/New Brunswick where my upbringing happened, we would not have turned an eye to the "storm" we got last night. We would be on our way to work and school and definitely would not be canceling things.
Guess it'll take more than 2 "storms" here to get used to the way people react.

Thursday, January 17, 2008


It looks like a winter wonderland! It's about freaking time!!!
Now, will it stick??
And will it be enough for ice cream???

Monday, January 14, 2008

It stopped :(

About 5 minutes after it started. With nothing to show for it :(  Will I never see winter again???


It's snowing!!! Winter really does come to Carlisle!!!!!  Maybe I'll get enough snow to make ice cream once this winter after all!!!!!! YAHOO!!!!!

Thursday, January 10, 2008

We're home :)

We're home. And back to work.  And the Lagoon starts on Sunday. That's the wrap up!
Funny quote from our trip home:
Starbucks barista:  "One Tall Decaf Vanilla Latte.  Oh, I mean, it's a Grande.  Don't worry, I wouldn't jip you your caffeine."

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Try again...

Yesterday, Jeremiah and I tried to fly home from Arizona. It didn't work. We're going to try again today. Cross your fingers that we make it farther than the airport this time!!! I don't know how many times I can call work and say "the President of the United States wouldn't let me go home!" and have it be believable!!!

Huh, you say?

Serious!! We got to the Tucson airport yesterday for a 1:05 flight. Before we left home, we knew it was already slightly delayed and figured it was from weather. We got there, it was scheduled to fly out at 2:00pm. We had a 2.5 hour lay-over, so still plenty of time to make our connecting flight.
Then the announcer comes on "For all travelers on flight 1228 to Chicago O'Hare, your flight is arriving on time, however, we need control tower okay before we fly out. It could be 120-240 minutes before take-off."

Why??? Because the President is flying in Air Force One and apparently doesn't like to share air space!!! You can't fly within so many miles of AFO and so we were grounded. We talked to the lady to find out for sure if we'd make our connection in Chicago, seeing it was the last of the night. She said it wouldn't be a problem because it would be backed up as well. Meaning we'd get home hours after our original late flight (10:50pm). So we got them to rebook us on a flight today... We didn't want to risk 1) getting stuck in Chicago or 2) not having a ride from Harrisburg in the middle of the night.

Good thing we did!!! The flight we were supposed to be on didn't leave until 4:18 and didn't get to Chicago until 9:08. Our flight from Chicago to Harrisburg (last of the night) left at it's original time of 8:00. That would have been a gross day.

Thanks for the extended stay POTUS!!

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Arizona Happenings

Wednesday already... Gracious!

Yesterday we went to see National Treasure 2 with Jer's dad. It was every bit as good as the first one, if you ask me. I really appreciate a movie that you can be sure is not tainted with nudity and language yet still has a little more depth than a Disney classic.

Today we are going hiking in the Saguaro National Park or the Desert Wildlife Museum. Both of which should provide some interesting character to my yet lacking 2008 in 2008.

Welcome to the new year everyone! I hope it holds something special for each of you!