Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Dinner Party Extravaganza and Try-em Out Tuesday

Okay so I decided to combine these two posts as kind of an explanation to my slackerness for this week's Try-em Out Tuesday!
First, although the Hubs has been stationed at the same base for three years we haven't met a lot of people around here! We recently moved on base which makes me feel a little more connected to the Hubs job and makes me feel safe when he is gone..yay!

However, our lack of connections (ie friends) can get a little lonely at times. Now, don't get me wrong, the Hubs and I love to spend all of our free time together and are still not tired of each other, but it would also be nice to have some friends around us to have cookouts and hang-out times with. So in an effort to meet new people on base and form new friendships the Hubs texted me on Friday to set up a dinner party date with a guy he works with and his wife that live two houses down from us! They are in the same life-stage as us (been married a few years with only dogs as kids) and they live by us ..score!

The ironic thing was that after we set up the party for last night the Hubs found out that they are moving next week!! Welcome to Military life :)

Oh well it was still a lot of fun!!

Here are some of the highlights/lowlights ...(oh totally forgot to take pictures and since i had never met them before i didn't really want to be flashing the camera for my blog all night...didn't want to scare them away)!

- This was the first dinner party that I have thrown in our new house/kitchen and it worked out very well! One of the hardest parts was planning the menu since usually I cook for people I know and know what they like. Here was the menu:

Braised Beef Ribs with a Horseradish Creme Sauce
Sweet and Hot Mustard Roasted Salmon
Sauteed Spinach with Bacon, Balsamic and Caramelized Pearl Onions
Smashed Baby Golden Potatoes with Chives
Bourbon Peach Cobbler with Vanilla Ice Cream

- Let's just say that on Sunday I hadn't cleaned the house or done any of the grocery shopping for the next night so yesterday was a mad dash to get everything done!! I tried to do like my mom does and write out a timetable for the everything that needed to be done..but well it never made it out of my head!! Oh well, I had everything done except the fish by the time they arrived and with only a few minor hiccups it went over pretty good!

- One of the funny/stressful parts was that I had been trying to get the hubs to check and see what they like to eat but as of Sunday night I still didn't know so I planned the menu out (everything except the salmon) and got all of the recipes ready! Then on Monday morning the hubs texts me to say the wife doesn't really eat red meat but eats a lot of salmon. okay time to find a new recipe to add to the menu..thank you robin miller for your quick turn around! Then I realized that although I like salmon I don't eat it that often and have never cooked it before..yikes! The only type I had worked with was the frozen pre-portioned fillets that you get from costco, so imagine my stress level when I went to the commissary and they only had salmon with the skin on (I couldn't get the frozen anyways b/c it wouldn't have time to thaw)! Needless to say it made me a little nervous. I did everything the recipe called for but for some reason it didn't seemed cooked enough..after putting it back in the oven a couple times and delaying dinner I decided it must be ready! I tasted pretty good and she ate a lot of it but when they left I noticed that the thicker part of the fillet might not have been fully cooked...oops..i think I just served a potential new friends partially cooked food!! Maybe she didn't notice?!

- other than that we had a really good time with a lot of laughs (they are awesome people)...too bad their moving :(

It didn't deter me though, I really enjoyed planning my first real dinner party for unknown guests and I look forward to many more in the future :)

Now on to "Try-em Out Tuesday"!!

Since I had a crazy last few days I was a bit of a slacker and failed to try out anything for this week!! So I decided to showcase on of my favorite products that I have been using for over a year now. I am a huge veggie (well mostly broccoli) freak and for a long time I had a hard time trying to figure out an easy way to steam my veggies without making them into mush! That's when I found this amazing product....
Glad Steam Bags!!

These bags literally have changed my life!! I have tried the ziplock brand as well but I like the glad ones a lot better. They hold a good amount of veggies and they steam them to pretty much perfection with little clean up! I usually use the bag two times and then throw it away. They are not too expensive and I just love them. Oh and you can believe me when I say that I go through a lot of veggies...I am embarrassed to say that I use one bag for myself each night and I go through about two big costco-sized bags (I think they are three pound bags) of broccoli a week by myself..I know I'm sick! The Hubs just laughs and shakes his head! I would be totally content to live off oatmeal and broccoli for life (I think I mostly do)! These bags are not just for veggies, you can also steam fish, chicken or beef and even add in seasonings or sauces to make an easy meal! I give this product an A++! I totally recommend that you keep some on hand for those night where you want an easy healthy meal or side dish!
Thank you guys again for helping validate my new favorite hobby and following me on my crazy life events and recommendations!!
Have a wonderful Tuesday ;)

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Super Awesome Giveaway :)

First I want to say that I love all of the the blog friends that I have made..everyone is so hilarious, unique, honest..etc (I honestly could go on for a while)! Thank you guys from the bottom of my heart for the support, encouragement and friendship you all give me!

Becky over at The Branches, one of the sweetest people I have met whose blog I can't get enough of, is having a suppertastic (i don't think that's a word but that's how great it is) giveaway!

Okay ladies here is a giveaway you don't want to miss!

We all like our make-up and what can be better than amazing mascara...

Go over to her blog and check it out ASAP!!!

Have a wonderful weekend all u lovely ladies :)

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Does Anyone Want a Free Yellow Lab that goes by the Name of Charles and Has the Potential to be Well Behaved?!

Okay so I am not really giving him away...but today I am totally tempted!!

He was being fairly good this morning and since the weatherman promised it was going to be a day that resembled summer (still waiting on that day to show up!)....I decided to take the pup for a walk...I know, I know...that statement never ends well!
I will first say that he had been doing very well on his walks since the Hubs has gotten back! Well not today!
We start out on our walk and we head straight for his first marking spot..fire hydrant #1 (there are about 6 or 7 along our walk). That's when I spot them....a father, young son and female dog...oh no! Please charlie, can you go blind for a few minutes as to not see them I plead! Even worse it was a female dog that Charles has made "friends" with in the past...I so NEED to get him fixed!!
Well lets just say he didn't go blind and as soon as he spotted the female dog...he ran..oh no! so basically there was me caught behind the running Charles trying to make him stop and telling him to sit (yeah like that would work)! The dad was very nice and the female dog let Charles sniff her for a few minutes with my feeble attempts to control him. We finally were able to part with them and I decided to change our route since they were heading the same direction we were! We headed the opposite direction and on to the little walking path in our neighborhood. However, the Charles had decided to continue to sniff everything along the way and pull as hard as he could (maybe it was his raging hormones or something)!
That's when I saw him...squat position ready....oh no...he is going to poop! luckily I get him on the grass and smart thinking me had brought along a poop bag. He does his buizness and I pick it up..but the nearest trash can is by a house with someone mowing their lawn and a yard full of kids...I have already learned my lesson for the day...so we turn around a head the opposite direction. I usually have to use both hands to control him but since I still had the bag of poo I had to make due with one hand on the leash...not fun! He was still pulling like crazy!
We finally made it to the trash..me very frustrated and Him all happy..stupid dog! I was trying to be a good mom and get him fully walked out so we continued on. We had only walked about another minute and I had enough!
Let's just say the walk ended early and if someone had driven by right then and asked me to donate a dog...well it's a good thing dog donations were not present in our neighborhood today!!

What are your crazy dog stories??? any advise for me???

Have a great Thursday (it's thrusday right?)!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Running and Cooking don't mix :0

So I seem to be developing a pattern as of late..and not one I really want to continue! As I mentioned in an earlier post, The Hubs finally convinced me to start running with him and even though we don't go the same route or speed, I still wait till he gets home so that we can at least start out together. This is how all the craziness started last night!

I have been trying to be good about cooking on a budget and saving money. This week has been the first time that I have actually made a menu for the week and stuck to it! Last night I made Penne Pasta with braised Short ribs (courtesy of Giada) which I had to start mid afternoon so the beef ribs could braise. This would workout well b/c then all I would have to do is put it all together when we got back from the run.

The Hubs got home and we changed and started off on what has become our nightly run. Everything was going well, except I have to add that I think my body is protesting b/c my hip was hurting so bad that it made my last 3 toes on my right foot numb..very annoying when trying to run! Anyways, I toughed it out though and made it the whole way. When I got home I wanted to get dinner done so I didn't take the time to change out of my workout clothes (can we say dedication...i think so?!) One of the last parts to the recipe was to transfer the cooking liquid and veggies into the food processor and mix till creamy to form the sauce. Since I didn't have a food processor I decided to use my immersion blender. However, the immersion blender decided to be MIA! I had always heard that if you don't have a food processor a regular blender works great too, and i have one of those so I decided to give it a whirl.
I transferred the hot cooking liquid into the blender, got it all ready to go and turned it on. What happened next shocked me to the core! All the sudden hot (and i mean burning hot) meaty liquid was spraying all over our kitchen and me! It took me a minute to comprehend what was transpiring and when I did I quickly turned off the blender.

The Hubs was standing there laughing and asking what happened..while I was standing there in shock and horror with meaty juices all over me! Then I started surveying the damage. Luckily there was still a decent amount of the liquid in the blender so our dinner was not ruined.
I then went to work cleaning up the mess. The sauce was literally all over a huge corner of our kitchen and the worst part is it stained our walls..(at least they are corner back walls)! I finished cleaning up..a little peeved at what just happened! And then leave it to me to say..."Oh man , I should have gotten a picture of this to post on my blog!" The Hubs just laughed and said.."silly girl" :)

What happened next was in no way on purpose though I wished I wouldn't have said the previous comment....

I had figured that I just hadn't had the lid on tight so I made sure that it was on tight this time, placed my had on top of the lid to make sure it would stay on this time and hit Blend one more time....

Again..complete shock as the still very hot liquid once again sprayed all over my just cleaned kitchen and me again!!! What the Heck!

Please excuse the grossness..I just got back from running!
All I could do then was whimper...I really didn't want to go through this again. My wonderful husband then banished me from the kitchen and took over the cleaning up process again! We all called in the reserves ...meaning The Charles .... and let him take care of the floor! At least I got pictures the second time!
The Charles was very excited

By then I decided the blender just wasn't working out and opened the cabinet one more time to look for the immersion blender. Holy Batman..what did I find right in the front...the immersion blender!!! I had thought it was out of it's box, but apparently for once in my life I had been organized and left it all secure in its box!

I put the remaining liquid into the pot again and in two seconds flat the immersion blender did it's job! Who knew it could be that easy?!!

Yeah, i don't know if it is a good idea for me to be doing any heavy cooking after running anymore...who knows what will happen next!!! The only reason I can think that the blender didn't work was because of the hot liquid and the steam it was producing?

Does anyone have any ideas???

Well the dinner came out wonderful anyways! Oh and the Hubs said that he really like my new perfume of meat sauce :)
I need to know i'm not alone...what are some of your most horrific cooking stories?

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

"Try-em Out Tuesdays" I forget what episode.. BUT MEN BEWARE?!

Sorry my brain is a little slow today! However, one thing I do know is that I love summer!!! I don't care how hot it gets and I can even deal with the humidity because baby when it's summer I am on cloud nine! I love the sun, the clothes, the trips, the nightly walks, the fact that it stays light until about 8pm and basically the heat (call me crazy but I still use my heated seat in the car during the summer)!
Unfortunately, I think that NJ has gotten confused and forgot that summer is suppose to start at the end of May/ beginning of June!! It is coming to the end of June and I am still waiting for the sun and warm weather!! All I have to say is that this state better not short change me on any summer days..gerrr (mean face)!
I only have one sort-of complaint for the summer and that is the fact that us women are expected to keep our legs hairless and silky smooth during these warm months (now whether we do that or not is another thing). In the winter months we are all covered up so who cares whether we shave our legs or not (well maybe the hubs but hey he agreed to the hairy winter legs when he married me)!

*Okay this is where I feel obligated to warn any possible male readers that the rest of this post is about to dive into the "strictly women topics" and therefore you might want to step away from the computer right now...consider yourself warned!

Now that I got that out of the way lets continue...

I actually do okay shaving the main part of my legs but one of big things that I neglect to do during these colder months is shaving the bikini line area! and if you are like me and allow the whole winter to go by without shaving up there you know what a hassle it is when you finally do decide to attack the forest with the razor!! Not fun is all I have to say! Each year I vow to get better about maintenance, and each year I try several different products to make this job easier..both with little or no success. Let's just say that this year was no different!

But being the TV addict that I am I recently saw a commercial that gave me hope for this year!

What magical product gave me the hope I need for this summer you ask?....

Shick Quatro for Women Trimstyle

This product is not only a razor but it also has an electric razor on the end that is water proof with the sole purpose of trimming the bikini area (I guess i'm not the only one to let the forest grow)!

According to Shick "This is the gadget that every girl needs to stay perfectly groomed. It is the first four blade razor and waterproof bikini trimmer in one. Shave, trim and transform with the flip of a handle"! Well okay then :)

Well needless to say I just had to try it out! It is fairly inexpensive at around $8-10 for the razor (refills sold separately). When I got home I couldn't wait to bust it out of the package and try it out! The razor part worked just as well as any other specialty razor. However, I was really disappointed in the bikini trimmer part. It is not very wide so it takes awhile if you have let yourself go like I have. It also doesn't pick up much hair so you have to go back and forth a lot and then my skin had red lines all over it. It got the job done but in the end I felt more frustrated than excited! Honestly to me it was no easier than doing my usual method of using a couple disposable razors and getting the job done with those.
I will say tough that I am not the type to uses specialty razors, the pink throw away kind at target work great for me! But if you are a die hard specialty razor gal you might want to check it out. It wasn't any more expensive than the other refillable razors and I in my opinion the trimmer works a lot better for more consistent maintenance.

With all said and done I give this product a D :( I was actually really sad because this was my first negative review! But hopefully it will save some of you the disappointment I experienced when my hopes of easier silky legs were dashed!

And since I don't like leaving on a sad note...here is one of my all time favorite funny video clips...

Flight of the Concords - Business Time

Sorry I couldn't figure out how to load it directly onto this post! But you can click on the link and experience the joy :)

I hope everyone has a wonderful Tuesday!!

Friday, June 19, 2009

The Moments you think "Was I really just that retarded?"...

And the verdict is YES!!

So since the Hubs just got back from trip they gave him a few days off...yay for time together. I just love lazy days and today has totally been one of those! We slept in and then after many many tries of persuasion to go running with him today I finally gave in. He has been training for a 1/2 and then full marathon and I am very proud of him...but I am not a runner! Don't get me wrong I love working out, but it usually involves workout dvd's in the comfort of my own home!

But needless to say I finally gave in and went to bed last night with the promise that I would run with him tomorrow. Oh and since we were going to be expending all those calories on the run we decided be better get them back by making biscuits and gravy for a late brunch afterwards. Also, since he is all good at running we decided that he would run with me for the first few miles and then i would stop and he would continue his long run.

So as I promised, today I accompanied the Hubs on his run. It actually went really well and I ran about 2.5 miles and still felt like I could go more (which i didn't but at least i felt like i could)! He continued his run and I started working on the next task of the day....FOOD!!

I had to run (and by run i mean drive) to the store to get the makings (since this was decided last night to do this and we didn't have sausage)! I am always looking for ways to make things more healthy and so i purchased reduced fat sausage which is good for the waist-line but not so much for getting the drippings that you need to make the gravy! I had to add butter to the roux so I don't know if I really saved any calories in the long run.

Okay back to the story. So as I am cooking the sausage I am trying to scrape up all of the brown goodness on the bottom and to do that I grab one of my cooking spoons. Didn't really dawn on me that using a plastic spoon on a hot metal pan really isn't the smartest thing! At first I thought the spoon just looked black b/c of the drippings...not so...as I inspected the spoon closer I saw the truth.

It was one of those moments where i though...seriously..was i really just that retarded! and the spoon answered YES!

Oh well at least they are cheap! and the Hubs didn't promised that the gravy didn't have any sort of plastic taste to it! We enjoyed a good brunch anyways with only one casualty in the process!

PS.. I have a confession. When i first realized the demise of the spoon I threw it in the trash. Then when digging through the trash to recover the ruined spoon with the sole purpose of taking a picture of it to put on my blog it hit me...When did I become this blog obsessed??! Don't let my lack of posts fool you..i constantly have stories running through my head to post..it's getting them on the computer screen that is the problem!

When did you first realize you were blog obsessed? Does anyone else look at life as one blog post to the next?

Have a great day :)

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Try-em Out Tuesday - Episode 3 (especially for pet owners)!

Hey All!!!

Okay so this is not a beauty/body product but OH MY GOSH it has changed my life!! And now without further blah blah (since I know you are dying to know what it is)...

Today's featured product is...

Pledge Fabric Sweeper for Pet Hair

Anyone with a pet (or without one) understands how annoying it is to have animal hair all over everything, which in turn gets all over you! We have enough shedding problems to deal with on our own without throwing our animals into the mix!

While we were moving there was a period of about a month that we had to kennel The Charles and I had actually got used to not having his hair over everything...then he came back! Don't let their short hair fool you...labs shed like crazy! Now don't get me wrong I missed him terribly but couldn't he have just left his shedding at the kennel?! And the worst part was that he was shedding out of control when he returned..I blame it on the shedding of the winter coat! We had gotten new couches and I was determined to keep our new casa nice so sorry charlie no more couch time :( Sadness..it was hard but I was determined. However, even though he wasn't directly on the couch his hair still managed to get all over it! It was driving me crazy and I was tired of people saying "Oh you must have a dog" how did they know? oh yeah my new accessory (white lab hair) couldn't leave home without it! so embarrassing! Once the Hubs left for his trip I needed to cuddle with someone so I started to let The Charles on the couch...big mistake...more hair! Seriously people, I could make like five more dogs with all the hair he lets go!

Then a few weeks ago I was strolling around target on my lunch and I saw the answer to my problem (or so I hoped)! I had seen the fabric sweeper on TV but didn't know what to think of it. They claimed it would do the job of 145 sticky lint remover sheets but since those never work for me that didn't leave me with a lot of hope. But since it was about $5 or under I decided to take a chance. I got home and first banned The Charles from the couch again (he needs boundaries anyway..its good for him) and got out my pledge fabric sweeper. I started with one of the cushions and did the sweeping back and forth motion that box directs .... were my eyes telling the truth...the hair was actually coming up! I could see my couch again :) I have used it for several weeks now and although it looks full it is still picking up pet hair everyday!! Seriously if you have pet hair problems and haven't tired it yet go out and get it RIGHT NOW! It will change your life! I even bought another one for upstairs since I'm too lazy to walk up and down the stairs to get it (pathetic i know)! Once it is full you have to buy another one...but as I have said it has lasted me several weeks and it is around $5 or under...you can't beat that!

Okay so on a side note...I have to apologize for giving The Charles such a hard time because I just used one of those swiffer sweepers on our bathroom floor and I have no room to talk about shedding! sometimes I am amazed how much hair comes off my head and yet there is still so much there! Is anyone else amazed about this?? Gross I know but I had to unclog the bathtub the other day and I swear I pulled out a full head of hair, and it had only been from about two weeks worth! Maybe I'm shedding my winter coat!

Anyways...sorry about the random tangent! Pledge Fabric Sweeper...You Rock!

Are there any products you are wanting to try? Let me know and stay tuned to next weeks episode!!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Yay awards :)

I have been slacking in getting up the awards/tags of late! So here combined into one magical post I am passing along the goodness!!


The Friend Award!

Lil' Woman, who has a super cute blog and you should totally check it out if you haven't, bestowed on me the Friend Award and I can barley contain my excitement!!

So Here it is:

"This award is bestowed on to blogs that are exceedingly charming. These kind bloggers aim to find and be friends. The are not interested in self-aggrandizement. Our hope is that when the ribbons of these prizes are cut, even more friendships are propagated. Please give more attention to these writers. Deliver this award to eight bloggers who must choose eight more and include this cleverly-written text into the body of the award."

So now I bestow this award on these amazing ladies:

Ladies you are so awesome and I love reading your blogs!!! Have a great day :)


The fabulous Teryn Ashley tagged me (and I am sorry it has taken me so long to get to it!

So here goes it...

1) Open you first photo folder

2) Now scroll down to the 10th photo

3) Post that photo and story on your blog

4) Tag five other blogger friends to do the same!

I love this pic of the Hubby!!!

So here is the story..

As everyone knows I am originally from Cali and growing up I spent many summers camps and vacations at Hume Lake Christian Camps. In the last 10 years they have started a new conference called "Romance Conference" where basically you arrive and are pampered along with your spouse for four days. It is an amazing time to get to know each other better, strengthen your relationship with God and your spouse, learn from older couples, and get to know other couples. And of course if you are familiar with Hume there are amazing speakers and AMAZING Food! I can't even begin to put into words what the conference is all about or how amazing it is! The host couples are there for any need that you have with the ultimate goal of serving you so that you turn around a serve your spouse. One of the days during free time The Hubs and i went down to the main lake area. Since we were part of this conference we had special privileges and got to crowd in front of all the highschoolers and get a boat first!! It was such an amazing experience to be at a place and do things that were a huge part of my childhood with my hubby (since we met in college and are not from the same area). We went out on the lake and rowed and had an awesome time (oh and by "we rowed" i of course mean the Hubs). Oh and did I mention that my parents were one of the host couples...you would think it would have been awkward but it was so much fun!!

Now I tag:

Can't wait to see your stories!!

And last but not least:

The Funky Blog Award

Iva is one of the sweetest ladies I know and she passed this on to all of her followers. Thanks Iva you rock. And now I am posting it to show that I love her blog and will never hold a giveaway to find out info on her :)

Just like Iva I really enjoy and appreciate those of you that follow my blog! You guys seriously make my day, minute, year, hour...etc every time I log on! So to show my appreciation I am passing this on to those who are reading this right now! Don't feel like you have to do anything with it but I wanted to let all of you know how amazing you are! I am constantly entertained, educated and energized by all of your blogs!

Thanks for bearing with my long post! I am sorry if you have been tagged a lot and please do not feel any obligation to do anything with them but just know YOU ROCK!!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Unwanted House Guest

So today I was walking downstairs and there it was...right there on the tile at the bottom of the staircase...wiggling all eight legs at me...A SPIDER!!

Side note - Okay so I have this intense fear of spiders or basically all insects. This fear was intensified last summer when our house was infested with fleas via the Charles, and I several days of crawly creatures in my house!

Back to today - when I saw the frightening creature first I held back the scream that was at the tip of my throat and tried to re-group quickly. I quietly tip-toed past the creepy crawly creature and ran to the bathroom to grap some good old TP. I wanted him to be unsuspecting so I could sneak up and get him. However, when I came out of the bathroom he was no where to be found..you know what that means folks...He is somewhere inside the house!! NOT COOL! All the sudden I started to get the crawly sensations and thought it was crawling all over my body! He is still MIA but now I freaked to walk anywhere near there!

Does this happen to anyone else??
What is your best creepy crawly creature experience?

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Weekend Festivities

I know that I have been semi-MIA with blogging lately...I apologize! There had been a lot going on with the Hubs trip and complications with the return date and basically I just didn't feel like writing anything! To make a long complaint short, his trip kept getting extended and even though he was not gone for a long time total..I started to feel that he was never coming back because every day my hopes would be dashed that I would get to see him soon :(
All that changed though when He finally made it home!! I can't tell you how excited I was!! He returned home on Thursday morning and I was seriously as giddy as I was on our wedding night (sorry if that is TMI but it's true)!So needless to say my weekend started a little early this week!!!
We spent the rest of Thursday getting all of his in processing taken care of, running errands, and basically spending time together! Oh, how I missed him! The Charles was really excited to have his dad back too...his tail has not stopped wagging!
Since the Hubs didn't have to be back to work till Sunday (boo for working on The Lords day) that still gave us two whole other days together...and it felt like the most precious gift ever! On Friday we decided to take a road trip...whoo hoo...gotta love road trips!! We drove down to Washington DC/Northern Virginia area to our favorite Mall and restaurant (actually we go there more for the restaurant but you have to love that it is in a mall)!! For those of you familiar with the area...we LOVE Tyson's Corner and even more WE LOVE COASTAL FLATS restaurant!!!
If you are in that area and ever looking for good food the Great American Restaurants is a group of locally owned restaurants that are by far the best food that I have ever tasted..and i am a huge foodie that is very picky!! They have these rolls that are to die for and don't even get me stared on the White Chocolate bread pudding (all i can say is heaven in my mouth and five pounds on my hips..but totally worth it)! Everything there is homemade with the most delicious sauces. I think they have about 7 different restaurants around the area and have amazing customer service that makes the food taste even better :)
Ok, back to the weekend!! On the way home we hit horrible traffic but as long as I was with the Hubs I totally didn't care! Oh and we were able to start a new book on CD which made the return trip go by quickly. We stopped at the best Panera ever on our way home (their bread is by far has the best texture and freshness of any Panera I have been too before). So are you starting to see a pattern...my life revolves around food :)
Today was a chill day...hanging around the house...running errands...walking the dog...having our first grill-out of the summer and having huge rainstorms to go along with it!
This weekend has seriously been top-notch and I can't even express how amazing it is to have our family whole again! It was really hard to have him away, especially at the end with all the complications, but having him back again makes it all worth it!

How was everyones weekend???
What was your favorite thing you did this weekend?

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Try-em out Tuesdays - Episode 2

Welcome all to the second episode of "Try-em out Tuesdays"
*Sorry all who were looking forward to the big nail polish review..unfortunately I was a slacker and didn't get the nail polish on the toes in time to fully test it out before today! Don't worry though, that review will be coming soon and today we have another amazing product to showcase :)
One of the shows that I followed religiously in high school and through college was TLC's "What not to Wear"! Stacy and Clinton totally became those voices in my head that would always make me analyze what I was/am wearing or buying. Even to the point that every time I step out of the house in my sweats I hear them saying "Sweats are for inside use only" and that there are other comfy clothes that can be worn outside! Every Friday night I would watch the show and every Saturday morning I would beg and plead my friends and family to enter me for a makeover, did I dress that bad...NO..but could I for a $5,000.00 Shopping spree...YES!! Needless to say they never gave in to my pleadings :(
One aspect of the show that I became obsessed with was the makeup, and more specifically..the Spray-on foundation that Carmindy used a lot of the time! It always looks so flawless and I had to have it! For years (yes really years) I search for this product but all that I could find was MAC or other expensive products that were similar..However, I didn't want to spend $70 on something I didn't even know I would like (although many times if it wasn't for the lack of $$ I probably would have).

Then what started as a really bad day held a surprising twist that is now bringing you the Featured product of the week! But before the big reveal I have to give the story (sorry ahead of time for the long post)!
About a month ago I woke up with the whole right side of my face in extreme pain. It felt like my
sinuses but a problem tooth also hurt very much and I couldn't eat anything. I headed to work and tried to ignore the pain and misery I was feeling. One of the kind ladies that I worked with at the time saw my pain and sent me straight to CVS to get some medication. Now, I don't normally shop at CVS (kind of pricey) but it was the closest drugstore to work. I new I had to focus and head straight to the medicine aile. However, I didn't know where that was so I had to wander around for a little bit to find it. I think by now everyone knows about my make-up addiction and as I was looking for medicine I spotted the make-up aile. Focus Ashley, Focus. your here to stop the pain..but the pull of the make-up was just too strong..I had to have just one peak.

That is when I spotted it...Carmindy's face..Sally Hanson make-up....could this mean what I think it means???? YES!!! And there it was, right in front of me, glowing it's magic make-up glow! I want natural beatuy too...I have to have it!

Sally Hanson Natural Beauty Airbursh Spray Makeup
Inspired by Carmindy

Yeah it's for real :) Right then and there I temporarily forgot the intense pain my face was in and almost screamed in delight over this new addition to my make-up bag (yeah I had to buy it)! that was when i realized that all pain isn't bad..i mean i would have never been to CVS or saw this wonderful make-up if it hadn't been for my intense need for medication!
Now for the review...
I would give this product an A. It cost about $12-13 for a 1oz can which lasted me about 1 month. It gives a good overall coverage and also had olive oil extract, chamomile and vitamin A to help condition your skin. It did not make me breakout (which a lot of make-ups do) and it covered all my flaws! One recommendation would be to use a make-up sponge to apply it (I used my fingers and I think I went through it a lot faster than I needed too). As I had mentioned earlier I had looked into other airbrush make-ups such as MAC and in comparison I thought the Sally Hanson product was up there with them and for a fraction of the cost! It is also a lot of fun to shake the can (probably did it more than necessary but I like to entertain myself)! I guess the only negative part is that I felt i went through it a little quicker than I would have liked but I think by using the sponge it will help and I loved the look it gave. I was really surprised because I am usually not a fan of Sally Hanson but they did a good job with this one! Try it out all!!
Oh and I am sorry again for the lack of pics...hubby still gone with the camera!!!

Sunday, June 7, 2009

And the Winner Is...

Congratulations Iva!!!

You have won your own bottle of Nivea Beautiful Legs and some other sun essentials :)

Thank you all so much for all the comments, new followers and participating in my First Giveaway!! I have already been able to meet some really neat people and read some amazing blogs :) All of you lovely ladies Rock!

*oh and i promise that it was completely random...i don't know how most people do it but I went with the name pull from a hat :)

I can't thank you guys enough for your encouragement and the fact that you read my blog! Stay tuned for next Tuesday's episode of "try-em out Tuesday"! This may be my first giveaway but it wont me my last!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Try-em out Tuesdays - Episode 1

*One note before we start...I apologize because I have pictures to prove my findings but unfortunately there was major camera malfunctions today (meaning my camera broke and the Hubs has the other camera with him) so you will just have to take my word for it!

Hey all!!

Welcome to the first episode of "Try-em out Tuesdays"! I am so excited to share with you my first experiment and hopefully make you more educated when you enter the beloved Target (or a similar store)!

Now ladies since it is June, I officially consider it summer and summer means none other than the dreaded (or anticipated) shedding of the layers of clothes and even stepping into a ..dare I say it..Bikini!
We all frantically try to get ourselves ready for this special season and though many of us look forward to vacation, cute clothes, and warm weather...we feel that our bodies are not prepared for the unveiling. Some go as soon as they can to the local tanning salon and pay crazy amounts in order to camouflage the lovely (or pasty) white skin that God gave them. Others go to their local target and stand for hours trying to determine which product will get the job done fairly well enough not to blind anyone without spending an arm and a leg (well a least then it would be less skin to worry about)!
I have found myself in the same situation and had recently seen a lot of commercials for "Nivea Sun Kissed Legs" which promised tan and glowing legs in five days and the need to shave less ...what more could a girl want! And at under $10 was if for real? There has to be some catch so I decided to purchase it and check it out myself.

So here goes the unveiling of the first test....

Now for a little background on my tanning expertise/experience...I worked at an upscale tanning salon in Bako, CA for about 5 years (shout out to EuroTan) and pretty much tried every bed and every product possible during that time. My work experience made me set on the fact that High Pressure "Euro" beds were the only way to go in order to tan safely (don't worry I wont go into my speech but if you want to know more please ask) and if I wasn't up for laying in the beds then spray tanning was the only way to go! However, along with the move to NJ taking me away from the fam it also took me away from my beloved EuroTan. I tried a couple places around here but nothing compared and I really couldn't afford to spend all that money right now (since I had tanned for free when I was working in the salon).

I have tried several "over the counter" tanning lotions but nothing really delivered good results.

Now for the results (and if you are still with me through all that..thanks)!

I give this Product a grade of a B.

I was actually really surprised that it did as well as it did! When I started my legs were pasty white and within 5 days they have been transformed into a tannish golden color that looks natural and isn't streaky! Hot Dog we have a winner :)

The reason that I gave it a B and not an A is that I really didn't see any change in the shaving frequency. My legs were still just as hairy (which is pretty bad) and I still had to shave just as often, but at least I was shaving tan legs instead of blinding white ones :)

I would totally recommend this product if you are looking for a way to spare the innocent by-standers from being blinded as you shed the layers this summer! And you just can't beat the price! I believe it was about $7 and I found that it has worked the best of all the other tanning lotion options presented in your local drug store. I would just forget about the shaving factor because that isn't as promising.

Well i hope this helped all of you fine ladies in your quest to save money and look HOTT :)

And in celebration of the first Try-em out Tuesday episode I am doing my first giveaway!!

All you need to do is follow me and leave a comment (if you already follow me then you can just leave a comment)! This will close Sunday at 2pm eastern time and then the winner will be chosen randomly and announced Sunday night and will receive their own bottle of Nivea sun kissed legs and a few other summer goodies :) Also, If you post this on your own site I will get two more entries into the giveaway! You may only enter once otherwise.

Good luck all!

Oh, and don't forget to tuned next Tuesday to find out if the price actually makes a difference in life of your nail polish!

Have a great Tuesday!

Monday, June 1, 2009

One More Charles Story

So some of you might have already heard this story since it happened a few weeks ago..but for those of you who haven't ...here it goes!

Well a few weeks ago The Charles woke up at about 2am ready to go. I let him out to do his business and then I put him in his crate (which we keep in the garage) so I could get some more shut eye. Now I was half asleep when I locked him in his crate with his cookie (yes I bribe my dog and I am not ashamed to admit it)! I went back to sleep but then I woke up at 6:45 am to a scratching noise coming from downstairs. I was really confused since the Hubs was gone and the Charles was locked up (or so I thought)! I cautiously made my way down the stairs and I heard the noise coming from the garage. I opened the door to an escaped dog and some dirt! Now where did the dirt come from you ask???? I had no idea! I checked out the trash bags, but no holes..I checked all around and I couldn't figure it out! That's when I remembered the potting soil by the garage door..bingo! First I should add that the Charles had acquired this new obsession with eating dirt..eww gross! The Charles had ripped open the soil bag and now there was potting soil everywhere! I appreciate him trying to help me garden but usually you can't really grow things on cement..sorry to break it to you Charles :)
I was steaming mad as I read him the riot act (which i know he didn't understand but at least it made me feel better)! Then I had to figure out how to clean the mess up. We had yet to purchase a big broom or anything that would help in this case. That's when I spotted it...the fireplace tools! Bingo again! Apparently the fireplace sweeper and shovel can double as potting soil pickup tools!

The funny thing is that just the day before I thought to myself.."Wow, our garage is still really clean"!

More Antics from The Charles...

(yeah he likes to show his goods!)

Let me first say that never underestimate the power of a dog or think you have their strength under control (especially when they weigh almost as much as you)!

Before the Hubs left I had really gotten out of practice with walking the dog...if I went I usually just tagged along while Hubby was the one to hold the leash. Don't get me wrong...it was very nice, but once he left it was a whole other ball game! I became a single dog parent for a little bit and with the dominate male out of the house...well...the Charles decided he would take on that role (meaning he would become impossible)! For the first few weeks I was working crazy hours and didn't have a lot of time to walk him and he was spending about 11 hours a day locked up in his crate (which is a no no since labs need their exercise)! I would come home exhausted and unleash the beast from his crate. Since he was getting a ton of sleep during the day I was getting up with him every night at about 2 or 3am! Not fun!

Well since I haven't been working so much I have made it a necessity to take him on one long walk a day and one short walk. We also try to play a lot so that I get out all his energy during the day...there's no daytime napping for the Charles anymore (and now he is sleeping till 5am..yay)!

The walks have been a challenge since he walks faster than me and as much as I have been working with him, he continues to pull (which is really frustrating). I have kept at it though and felt that he had made some progress....until today!

It actually started out as a pretty calm walk but when you add in two other dogs along the way I quickly remembered how strong my dog is when he decides he wants to run! Not fun! So while I am trying to control him as he is running this way and that towards the dog with the mom, toddler and stroller in tow (yeah her dog was just siting there barking...not fair)..I am profusely apologizing to the other mom and try not to scare her with my mad dog handling skills! I am sure I was a site to see! I finally got somewhat control of the Charles and with only one ripped-up toenail on my end (yeah walking in flip flops wasn't the best idea) we continued on our way!

I am just glad that he didn't run because let me tell you...it was a shocking reminder of how strong he is and how weak I am!
*note for future female dog parents...it may not be the wisest thing to start out with a dog that is going to weigh almost as much of you and be way stronger...and if you do...I would highly suggest investing in a few dog training sessions!

Well at least we made it back in one piece..well almost..poor little toenail!