A Modern Day Fairy Tale: July 2012

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Fighting For Acceptance {A Petition}

By now, we all of course have heard of the horrible tragedy in Colorado last Friday. While I have not posted on the subject, my thoughts and prayers have been with all those involved.

This afternoon, I read something else on this story that broke my heart all over again: the ignorant statements made by Joe Scarborough suggesting an Autism diagnosis could explain why the shooter was able to commit such a crime.


As an Autism mom, I am stunned. Sadder even still, is that Scarborough himself has a child on the spectrum. As Autism parents, we are forced to fight for our children. We fight for services, we fight for a proper education, we fight for understanding and acceptance. So please tell me how he could begin to think that spreading such an allegation could be good for our children and the Autism community as a whole? It does nothing but spread a false stereotype, that our children will now have to fight against...on top of the other incorrect stereotypes they already have to deal with!! How many horrible acts of crime are committed by those NOT on the spectrum!? Such a speculation is ridiculous and I worry what it will do for all the effort that has been put into gaining acceptance for our children, despite their diagnosis, not to be discriminated against and feared because of it.

I have said it before and I will say again- my son is amazing. He's smart, entertaining and the most lovable kid I know! I am certain he will do AMAZING things in his life and touch the lives of many, if only he is given the chance to show the world what he has to offer. Please join me in fighting against this horrible statement and signing this petition. Let Joe Scarborough know that we will not stand back and allow such ignorance be spread!

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Isaiah 40:8 {Scripture & A Snapshot}

"The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God will stand forever."- Isaiah 40:8

Well, I think that about sums it up, doesn't it?

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Lilla Rose Winner {and an amazing deal too!}

First of all, I want to say welcome to my new readers, and a big thank you to everyone who entered the Lilla Rose giveaway! I truly wish you could all win one of these amazing products! But unfortunately, I can only choose one...and the lucky winner is:

Jill Kasparbauer!!!!

Jill has already been e-mailed, and I know she will love whatever item she chooses! Congrats again, Jill!!

For those that didn't win,  Linda is offering all NEW Lilla Rose customers an amazing special. For the next three days, purchase three items from her website, www.lillarose.biz/cliptomania, and receive a free item up to $16 in value!! To redeem this offer, e-mail Independent Consultant, Linda Menke, at cliptomania@ymail.com with your customer number and the item number and description of the item you want for your free item ($16 and under). Your free item will be mailed within 2 weeks!

And remember, if you live outside the US, Canada, or Mexico, you can still order!! Just e-mail your order using item number or descriptions to Linda. She will calculate shipping costs and use Paypal to send you an invoice, then ship the items to you directly!!

Friday, July 20, 2012

A Few Friday Randoms

  • First of all, I want to start by reminding everyone that you have just a few more hours left to get your entries in for the Lilla Rose giveaway!! Don't miss out!!! And remember, if you've already entered, you can share for extra entries! I will announce the winner, along with a wonderful special Linda will be offering tomorrow, so be sure to look out for that! And good luck!!
  • Second, many of you may have noticed my blog has can through a makeover!! I've been changing up backgrounds over the last week or so, and I still may change a few more things around, BUT I could not be happier with my new custom blog header from love notes by lauryn! I actually won this as part of a giveaway over at one of my favorite fashion blogs Modern Modest Beauty. (Check her out if you need some great ideas for dressing modestly, rather that be for work, religious or personal preferences!) Anyway, I'd never had a custom blog header made before and wasn't sure where to begin!! My request to Lauren was very vague and I wasn't sure what to expect...but she nailed it on the first shot!! I just LOVE it!!
  • Don't you love when you get packages? I do...I stalk the mailman/UPS man/FedEx man if I know something is coming! Today it was the Fedex man, and he brought me this lovely jewelry tree from Dayspring. I had been contemplating buying this from the moment I saw it, but being the frugal shopper (cheapskate) that I am, I was hoping it would eventually go on sale...but I couldn't wait anymore, I had to have it. I did have a $20 gift code at least, so I still got it for only $16!! Very much worth it!!!

  • Speaking of Dayspring, have you checked out the Blessings Unlimited July Extravaganza Sale yet? If not, be sure to head on over to my website (or talk to your regular consultant if you have one!) and see what we have to offer...there are some wonderful, discontinuing products on sale for 50-65% off!! Amazing deals!
  • Do you ever feel like you look the best when you aren't leaving the house? I feel this way often...like today! I'm not sure what it is, but there is something about today's outfit that I am just loving (perhaps that it's cooler outside, and downright cold in my house, so it's more fall than summer, and well, who doesn't LOVE fall fashion!?)...so I will share it with you so it's not wasted:
This top was one of my finds at my amazing Plato's Closet trip.
The belt is from Shabby Apple (and my absolute favorite belt!) I must have gotten one of the very last ones because it disappeared from their website right after I got it, but it is FABULOUS!!
And the jeans...well, you can't really see these, but they are another Plato's find from a few days ago...Banana Republic Skinny Jeans that fit perfectly, and I swear are the most flattering jeans I own! They weren't part of that trip, but still a steal at just $2 (seriously! They were on clearance, I believe because something had been splashed on one leg...I washed them, and as good as new!! I look forward to fall days when this outfit becomes more frequent!!

I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend, and I can't wait to see who will be the lucky winner tomorrow! Be sure to check your e-mails to see if you won (and check spam too!). 

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Shaun's Turning 5!! {Birthday Wish List}

My sweet, sweet Shaun will be 5 years old in just a few short weeks! Where did the time go!? Wasn't I just posting his 4th birthday wishlist...or planning his very first party!? It's crazy!! Of course, Shaun is super excited about his upcoming birthday...in fact, he's been working on his birthday list since Easter!!

If you've followed my blog long or know us personally, you know that since his second birthday, Shaun has been obsessed with Thomas the Tank Engine...up until very recently, he would ONLY play with Thomas toys...and unfortunately, after collecting them for a few years, we seemed to run out of Thomas toys to get him!! Thankfully, his area of interest has grown this year. While he still loves his Thomas trains (and is playing them as I type this), we at least have more options!! But there are still a few more Thomas items he thinks he needs:

Source: toysrus.com via Randi on Pinterest

Thomas Alarm Clock- He's been asking for this for awhile!!

Source: amazon.com via Randi on Pinterest

Bachmann Thomas Trains- This has also been on his wishlist for ages...and will remain there until he's much older!! These are the fancy model trains, and if I'm going to spend $200 on a toy...he better be able to play with it...or at least appreciate that its not meant to be played with!!

His newest interest is Mario, so naturally that makes up a large part of his list:

The list above looks super long, but in reality it's 75% plush...basically, he wants all of the Mario character plush toys! NOT action figures (I know, I asked), but plush...it's one of his favorite things...he has all his Angry Birds, Thomas, Disney Character, even a Pac Man Ghost!! As far as Mario characters go, he has Mario, Blue Yoshi and Yellow Toad...I believe that's it, but I may have missed one! He would love the rest!!

Source: toywiz.com via Randi on Pinterest

(Speaking of plush, his wishlist wouldn't be complete without this Mighty Eagle plush...but since I refuse to spend $100 on a stuffed animal, let's just move right along, shall we?)

Source: walmart.com via Randi on Pinterest

Mario Kart Wii K'Nex. The set above is one he's specifically requested, but he would love the other sets as well!! And I must say I'm really glad I looked these up because we'd looked at them at Target and this particular set is at least $10 cheaper elsewhere (like Wal-Mart!!). Target does have a few sets on clearance though (at our local store anyway!)

Source: amazon.com via Randi on Pinterest

He recently found this at Target and asked for it to be put on his list. Of course, he's a little young (and has a much too short attention span) to play chess, but I did see they make a checkers/tic tac toe set that would be a bit more age appropriate at least!!

Shaun is easily swayed by commercials (hence why he keeps telling me we need to buy Beggin' Strips for Nana's dog!!), and so he has been obsessing with these Dreamlites since he first saw them advertised on Sprout. His favorite is the penguin because they live in the ice and snow!! (Penguins are his favorite animal I think...and he really loves anything else having to do with snow and/or Christmas!)

Source: amazon.com via Randi on Pinterest

Games! Games! Games!! He has recently gotten both a Wii and a DS so he has several games he would like as well (including the one pictured above!) Mommy and Daddy have already bought and hidden Epic Mickey and Pac Man Party (which also includes the original game!). Aside from those two, his games of choice tend to be...Mario of course!! He has also requested a Nintendo 64...he just doesn't believe us that they're no longer being made!!

I know there are many that I missed and that some of these were kind of general (for those friends or family actually coming here to figure out what to buy him- just send me a message for specifics!!), but I think overall he has a pretty great list...he won't get everything on it, but I know he's going to have a wonderful birthday nonetheless!!

(Psst...speaking of gifts, don't forget to enter to win the Lilla Rose giveaway!!)

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Finding Calm in the Storm

Source: etsy.com via Randi on Pinterest

I'm sure I've mentioned many many times...but I hate storms. Of all of my many fears, I'd say storms are at the top of the list!! As I type this, I can hear thunder rumbling and my poor stomach is in knots. I have 3 different weather windows open, as well as the TV turned to the local network, just in case. We are currently only under a watch and while we had some rain earlier, it has since passed for now. As you can see, my fear is pretty extreme.

I post the pictures above as a reminder, to myself and to anyone with such an extreme fear like myself (be it storms or something else). These are words I try to keep in my head as I wait for the storm to pass. I pray constantly, and it always seems to calm me some (though some may never notice that I'm calmer, but I certainly feel the difference from where I started from). Though it is easier said that done, I know in my heart-even if my nerves and stomach don't get the memo, that God is in control and as the picture above states, we are safer with Him even in the storm, than anywhere else without him. And while I do pray for the storm to pass quickly, I more important pray for to be kept calm, and safe until they do.

(If this post makes no sense, I sincerely apologize...my mind tends to race at times like these...more than anything this was written in an effort to calm myself a bit...and in that has been successful!!)

Friday, July 13, 2012

Lilla Rose Review

My hair and I have a love/hate relationship. Some days, when it's cooperating and I have the time to style it, I really love it...but it's also very stubborn! And thick! And just doesn't like to cooperate with whatever way I decide to style it that day. I have to admit when I was contacted by my wonderful new sponsor Linda Menke, an independent consultant for Lilla Rose, I was skeptical that a little flexi clip would actually work on this stubborn hair of mine!! But I needed to try something with this summer heat-so I agreed to give it a shot, what could it really hurt? Lilla Rose, for those unfamilar with the company as I was, is a direct sales company featuring 'unique, functional, and well made hair jewelry'. These are the products that Linda sent me to review:
Medium Flex Clip: Celtic Knot Black Knickel
Small Flexi Clip: Classic Etched Cross
Bobbi Pins: Celtic Cross
(The focus of this review was primarily on the Flexi Clip,
but these bobbi pins were great! Better quality than typical
bobbi pins and add a nice touch style wise as well!!)

Aren't they pretty!? But could they really work? I couldn't wait to find out!! As soon as they arrived I immediately started experimenting. I was shocked to find that I was easily able to pull my hair into a nice updo using the medium flexi clip:

(Excuse the bad picture, do you know how hard it is to take a picture of the back of your own head!? Particularly with a heavy DSLR!? I assure you it looked better in person!) Anyway, I was reminded of a similar style I used to wear all the time: the claw clip. Do you remember these? They weren't cute at all, but a very easy way to get your hair up quickly!! Though, they never seemed to stay for very long!! From the front, this gave the same type of look, but from the back...it actually looks CUTE! And it held my hair up ALL day!!

I will admit that the next day when I went to try again, and could not for the life of me get my hair up! I had begun thinking that day one was just beginners luck, but as it turned out, it was user failure on my part...I was flipping my hair up and then twisting it, whereas I was supposed to twist the hair, and then flip up. I'm not sure if that makes sense now, but if you get one and find yourself having the same troubles, I hope it does then!! After I figured that out, I was back to being extremely happy with these wonderful clips!! It was certainly a welcome change from the boring old pony tail that I'd come to rely on when I was short on time!

Another style I commonly wear is the half up ponytail. I have been wearing this style for as long as I can remember, and I admit, it's a little boring, but with my small flexi clip, it brought new life into this classic look. 

Looks much better that a regular old pony-tail too, don't you think? (Though I could have straightened my hair first I suppose) I also used this clip for a simple pony-tail, but did not get pictures. It was another great look, which I'm actually wearing right now!! The possibilities with these clips are endless...I am now a believer!! Cute, practical...the perfect hair accessory for the busy mom (woman) on the go!!!

And they're great for kids too! I decided to try it out on my niece when we were visiting, and it looked absolutely adorable!! (Though if she were really to use one, she'd have needed the extra small clip, my small clip was just a bit too big to hold up her thin hair securely!)

For more about the company, or our sponsor Independent Consultant Linda Menke, you can visit her website or check out her Facebook page!!

(These products were sent to me from Linda in exchange for my honest review, all thoughts are my own and I received no monetary compensation. Also note that this giveaway is being sponsored by Linda, Independent Consultant, and not by Lilla Rose directly!)

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Family Room Pinspiration!!

In our new house, we have this wonderful extra living room type area that is last on my list to decorate: 

Gorgeous, isn't it?

It certainly has a ton of potential anyway! The goal of this room is to be a family room/playroom...a fun space, that's not overly kid-ish where we can play board games, the Wii, etc and where he can be free to play as he pleases! I'm picturing lots of bright colors, and perhaps a slightly vintage feel (though I'm thinking more 60s and 70s than my usual love of 50s!)

The picture above was taken on the day we first looked at the house, the picture below is what we have going on now:

Ahh, the sheet over the windows is a great look isn't it? (It was getting crazy hot without something!) The addition of furniture was recent...on a whim on Monday I decided to move our love seat out of the living room and into this room...I get these whims often!! (I'm not sure why my hubby is ever surprised when he comes home to find furniture moved!) You can see that it desperately needs a little love...and so I turn to Pinterest. These are a few ideas I've been considering!!

Obviously curtains are very much needed in this room...I've looked and looked and can't find any (affordable) options to suit the look I'm hoping for!! Curtains are so expensive!! So this seems like a great alternative!! 

Source: etsy.com via Randi on Pinterest

I love both of these ideas to add in some fun color and pattern!!

Source: etsy.com via Randi on Pinterest

Fun pillows to bring in more color!!

Source: bhg.com via Randi on Pinterest

Such a fun idea...I think my son would just love this!!!

So, those are the ideas I'm liking...obviously in more boy-ish colors, but keep it bright and fun. Who knows how the room will actually turn out though!!

Friday, July 6, 2012

Another Plato's Shopping Trip- Best Deal Ever!!

Remember a few weeks ago I posted about my Plato's Closet shopping trip where I paid about $28 for 5 tops and a pair of shorts? I also mentioned an upcoming grab bag sale I was hoping to take advantage of...well, that sale was today...and I most certainly took advantage of it!! The deal was for $10, you could get whatever you could fit in a bag. Now I wasn't sure what size bag to expect BUT after moving cross country with only what we could fit in a Camaro, or on the plane...well, packing a lot of clothes into small spaces is somewhat of a specialty of mine!! So, here is some of what I got at this wonderful sale:

The whole load!!

Lots of tank tops!! I don't usually do spaghetti straps or strapless, but with this crazy heat, I figure they'll be great for  around the house...I'll have to get a few new cardigans for when we go out!!!

Some cute new tops!!!

And a few more!!!

This cute little dress...it's definitely going to need a cardigan as well...maybe some leggings too, but I love it so I couldn't pass it up!!

Some jeans (I'd have gotten more, but they just don't fold up as small!!).

These adorable earrings...how cute are they?

A few pairs of sleep shorts- I'm wearing the pink now and they are VERY comfy!!

These were all new with tags! Their total retail value was over $80!!!

I got to the store a bit early, before they opened...and its a good things I did because it got crazy busy...and I don't do crowds well!!! The bags were smaller than expected, think about the size of a newspaper bag, but maybe a little bit wider and quite a bit shorter...I ended up with 4 bags full though- a total of 30 tops, 4 pairs of jeans, 3 dresses, 2 pairs of sleep shorts and a pair of earrings. I also found a cute pink iPhone case that wasn't on sale that I had to buy (I'm using my hubby's hand-me-down iPhone 3 until it decides to kick the bucket and they're hard to find cases for!!) Altogether I paid...right around $45!! That was a savings from their original marked prices (which were of course already a great savings!) of $256!!! And remember I said the new clothes would have been $80+...holy cow!! Now, I'm good at finding the bargains, but I even shocked myself! And looking at these photos, I'm shocked I got all this in those little bags!! I would definitely say the crowd, the 20 minute checkout and waiting for about 10-15 minutes in the excessive heat was certainly worth it, don't you think!? I can't wait to put together some cute outfits with all my new finds!!

Wallet-Friendly Wednesday

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Family Traditions {4th of July 2012}

In our family (my mom's side), making homemade ice cream is a one of my very favorite family traditions! Anytime the family would get together during the summer months, we'd have the ice cream maker out! And it was the most delicious ice cream in the world. (Grandpa used to say he stuck his finger in it to make it extra sweet!) Of course eating it was great, but making it was fun too...taking turns sitting on and cranking...we LOVED it! I know, I know...electric are so much easier, BUT it takes out half the fun!! My mom said this tradition goes back for as long as she can remember as well...

My Great Grandma and Grandpa and my Uncle making Ice Cream back in the 70s!!

My big sister Hope and I...summer of 1988!

The whole family working on it!
I'm fairly certain that's me with the crazy frizzy pigtails!
Whatever was I thinking!?
So, of course when my mom had all of her grandbabies together on the 4th of July for the first time...ever...we HAD to make ice cream!! And let me just say, it was still a blast!!! This is one family tradition that I am happy to carry on!

Shaun and my niece and nephew, carrying on the tradition:)

Mimi and her grandbabies!

I had to get in on the action as well!

Overall, it was an amazing 4th of July!! Hot? Yes! But wonderful nonetheless! (It sure beat out watching fireworks by myself while the little man slept and the husband was in another country like last year!!)

I hope all of you had a great day as well! Happy 4th (A Little Late!)

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Scripture & A Snapshot- Jeremiah 20:9

But if I say I'll never mention the LORD or speak in his name, his word burns in my heart like a fire. It's like a fire in my bones! I am worn out trying to hold it in! I can't do it!- Jeremiah 20:9

This is a verse I have loved since high school...such a great verse isn't it? Shouldn't we all feel this way? Like we just can't help but speak about the greatness of the Lord?