Friday, January 29, 2010

Digital and other stuff

So...I'm getting a new phone today! Verizon didn't have it in stock when we went in, so they had to ship it. I'm so excited! I can get the internet on it, but decided I don't need it right now. I'm always home, and I don't live in a big city, so I don't need directions or anything. I may change my mind, though. Anyway, it's the LG enV3 in Slate Blue. So pretty!



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I just found a cute little app on Facebook this morning called weRead. Love it! You can read books online!

Does anybody have a Kindle? Are they worth the cost? I've been debating for some time. Faye left some money to my brothers and I, and (if we ever get our checks) I was thinking about getting one. I just don't know, though...I like books, and I love supporting my local library and our locally owned bookstores. But, it would be nice to have a whole collection of books that I could take with me on trips.

I got an email yesterday regarding those Kindles. Amazon now has free downloads available for the PC and iPhones! They're working on downloads for the Mac and Blackberries, too. You can sign up to get an email when the Blackberry download is available here.

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Several of the teachers at the boys' school have been asking me how I made their pencil & crayon rolls. I'm going to work on a tutorial for it this weekend, and will try to get it up on here early next week, then I'll finish the soccer ball tutorial and get it up as soon as possible, too. Monday is Maddie's 3rd birthday, and we have something special planned, so it'll be Tuesday or Wednesday before I get any tutorials up.

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Last, but not least, I want to direct your attention here. Carla is not just daring all of us, she is TRIPLE DOG DARING us! Check it out, and have a great weekend!



Monday, January 25, 2010

Havin' a Ball with Chocolate Cake!


I thought I was pretty busy last week, but I really don't have much to show! I made my mom a pillow similar to this one:


I forgot to take a picture of hers, but it's pretty much the same as the one above. I made it last year sometime, and my mom really liked it. I've been trying to use up some of my stash, so now she has a matching pillow!

The thing that took up most of my crafting time was this ball:


I much prefer machine stitching to hand stitching, so why I decided to make this ball, which is completely hand stitched, is beyond me! I'm hoping to get a tutorial put together for it in the next week or so. I didn't take pictures as I was working on this one, so I'll be making another one.

Things that were started, but not yet ready to show include:
scarf
notebook/composition book cover
Chore charts for the boys
organizing my fabric

I'm hoping to have more crafty things to show you soon!

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Now for that promised recipe, my Grandma's chocolate cake.

3/4 C soft shortening
1-3/4 C sugar
3 eggs
2-1/3 C sifted flour
2/3 C cocoa
1/4 tsp baking powder
1-1/4 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1-1/2 C water
1-1/2 tsp vanilla

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour (2) 9x1-1/2 inch layer cake pans or (1) 9x13 pan. Blend shortening and sugar together in large bowl. Add eggs, beat at high speed until mixture is fluffy and light colored, about 5 minutes. Sift flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together. With mixer at low speed, add dry ingredients alternately with water and vanilla. Pour batter into pans. Bake 30-35 minutes or until cake springs back. Cool 10 minutes. Enjoy!

Friday, January 22, 2010

Grandma

I've been debating all morning whether or not to write this post. After reading Amanda's post, I realized that I should.

Like most people, I had two grandmas. We lost my dad's mom in 1991, a month before my 12th birthday. I wasn't very close to her, and for years wondered why I had such a hard time dealing with her death. I think it's because I missed my mom's mom, and craved another relationship like I had with her.

Today is January 22, 2010. Today should have been my Grandma Southern's 80th birthday. She fought very hard for a long time. But in March 1988, ovarian cancer took her from us. I miss her. I mourn her. It still upsets me that my younger brother, who was only 3 when we lost her, barely remembers her. It makes me sad that she never got to meet her great-grandchildren. I think they would have been inseparable. To say that she was the most amazingly wonderful grandma ever would be an understatement.

I am thankful for the very short (almost) decade that I spent with her. I am grateful to her for my wonderful mom.

This is one of my favorite pictures of her (and that's my lil' brother). It makes me smile.

Happy Birthday, Grandma. I think I'll bake your chocolate cake today.

*Check back on Monday for Grandma's recipe, and to see what I've been up to this week - I've been busy!*

Sunday, January 17, 2010

My Trips Overseas

I've been avoiding the news lately. There have been to many heartbreaking stories over the last month.

I escaped, for a few days, to the English countryside. I've been begging Miss Elizabeth Bennett and Mr. Darcy to stop being so stubborn, and yelling at Mr. Bingley to grow a spine, use his own mind, and ask Miss Jane Bennett to marry him. There have been many obstacles, including the zombies who have been threatening to take over the country. But, in the end, all is how it should be.


I am hoping that by this next Saturday, I'll be able to go along with the Dashwood sisters as they search for true love, while trying to stay out of the grasps of the Sea Monsters.

In March, I plan to re-visit the Bennetts and find out how the unmentionables came about. Then, I'll be off to Russia in June to see how Anna Karenina fares in a steampunk world! I must admit that had these books not come highly recommended from friends, I would never have given them a second glance. I'm happy to report that Pride and Prejudice and Zombies was an entertaining surprise, and I've heard that the others are/will be just as fun to read.

Go to your library and check them out, or you can look on my left sidebar under my Recommended books and my 2010 Reading List if you'd like to order them.


Thursday, January 14, 2010

Trip Around The World

I happened across a flickr gallery that I fell in love with. It would be irresponsible of me not to share it. These beautiful photos take the viewer on an amazing trip around the world. It was the Doors and Windows gallery that I found, but I strongly recommend checking out the other galleries listed on the left side of the page.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Hours of Operation

I'm a lucky lady...I get to be a stay-at-home mom. I'm also a procrastinator who gets sidetracked very easily. That's a bad thing when both of my kids are in school all day, and there are thousands of enticing blogs that I can look at. And let's not forget about Facebook, which is oddly addicting. It's my own fault that I end up doing housework during the little bit of time between when the boys get home from school, and when they have to go to bed.

My solution is to create a schedule for myself:

Monday-Friday*
8:00am - 1:00pm Housework; Fix, eat, and clean up lunch
1:00pm - 4:00pm Internet/Crafting/Relaxing time
4:00pm - 5:00pm Time with my boys
5:00pm - 7:00ish Homework time; Fix & eat supper, put away left overs
7:00ish - 7:30ish TV/Game time
7:30ish - 8:30ish Help boys get ready for bed and spend some one-on-one time with each.
8:30ish - Finish cleaning up supper & relax till bedtime
*On Fridays, the boys get out of school early, so my "me" time will be shortened, but I'll get to replace it with time with the boys!

Monday, January 11, 2010

Simplify

I love this picture...makes me laugh every time I see it!

Last year, I had a whole list of very detailed resolutions, and I finally realized what a bad idea that was. It was almost overwhelming. What are resolutions for? I think we make resolutions because we want to better ourselves and we want to be truly happy. This year, I decided to find a single word that would define every resolution I want to make.

Simplify.


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