Tuesday, June 29, 2010

What a Stinker! Literally!

My house stinks.

I'm not even kidding.

I thought it was that bag of rotting potatoes that I found in the kitchen earlier last week. That was nasty! *gag* Threw it away with hopes of fresh air!

No such luck.

I can't even figure it out! My mom thinks that maybe it's from the humidity.... just eeking out all of the funky smells from the carpet, furniture or whatever.

It's an odd musty smell. Part of me thinks it's coming from the basement. When I go down there, I smell it, but not as much (methinks because it's cool down there, so the smell isn't magnified?).

Thankfully, Cory has taken to opening the windows in the AM before I get up to air things out a little.

I must mention though... the 2 bedrooms upstairs... do NOT stink. We keep their doors closed through the day to keep the cat out (and even at night). Let me tell you, getting up 7 times in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom... I walk out into the hall and BAM! It hits me! I thought it was just my pregnant nose... (because even the inside of my cabinets smell bad enough to make me gag right now)... but Cory started to notice it too.

We're baffled. We have cleaned. We have febreezed the furniture... no luck.

We run a dehumidifier in the basement because we've had drainage issues (water runs off the hill behind our house into our garage/basement drain... which was backing up MAJORLY... but is now a bit more under control after clearing the drain). Could it have something to do with moisture in the basement?


PS--Cory read my last post (without my prompting) and informed me that he hadn't planned on (or thought about) getting me anything on that list for my birthday! HAHA! Oh well, I tried! Guess it will all just be a surprise!!

Friday, June 25, 2010

Wish List

I decided to take a break from Flashback Friday this week. My birthday is coming up at the end of July and Cory has been asking me for the past couple of weeks what I have on my birthday wish list. So instead of giving him a handwritten list... I decided to post a picture list here on my blog!

Of course, the very first item I wanted to post was a pottery wheel. However, after browsing for awhile, I realized that it was WAY too expensive to ask for! So I'll pass on that one. Besides, once my belly starts growing, I won't be able to use it too much anyway!

So onto the rest of the list, in no particular order:

Stamps! Obviously not THESE stamps since they are 5 cents short... but just stamps in general because I love sending snail mail... and buying stamps myself can get expensive!!

And when we are on the topic of snail mail...

I love fun tapes, stickers and labels to use on my envelopes! It just seems so much more fun and exciting to dress up my snail mail!

TOMS! Last year, my lovely cousin surprised me by sending me a birthday gift of TOMS Shoes. They were a hibiscus design... which is a little wild for me. HAHA! I'm more of a plain jane. However, I LOVE those shoes. They are comfy and slip on and off so easily. Plus, it's awesome that for every pair you buy, a pair is sent to a child who may have never had shoes in their life. I would like to get a black or brown pair (I know BORING)... but my cuz accidentally got me a Men's 8.5 instead of Women's... so I'd like to get a pair that fits a little better and that I'd be able to wear with more things (since the blue/grey hibiscus design doesn't always go).

I am not a headband person. I like them... but I always feel like I look so goofy in them! However, I love those head wraps that you can just twist your hair all up in. I have looked at quite a few, but since I don't have dreads, I think something like this Bandoobie would work better.

I love to Read, Read, Read! However, poor Cory likes his sleep! I thought this reading light was pretty clever. It illuminates a whole page... and only the page so that when I am reading at night (since I have probs falling asleep) Cory won't be disturbed by the bedside lamp being on!

I used to have this CD. Not sure what happened to it... but I heard one of the songs the other day and it reminded me that I would like to have that CD again!!

I also want this CD! I love folk music... and Dougie Maclean is one of my favs! I can't believe I haven't bought it already!

I have been wanting a new vacuum for quite awhile now. I have been looking at different reviews and this one looks pretty decent. I thought I'd want a bagless, however you have to clean the filters CONSTANTLY. A bag vacuum is just fine with me as long as it has attachments!

Of course, there are plenty of other oddball things I could add... but these are the things that stuck out the most! I would love to add all sorts of art/craft/sewing stuff, however my sister is coming over today to help me organize my spare room (which is FULL of craft supplies)... so I probably shouldn't add to the pot just yet! ;)

I hope you all enjoy your weekend!!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

A Recipe: Soft Bread Sticks

First, an update (hope it's not too graphic--but hey, it's pregnancy):

I had a Doc appt this AM to go over some things from my blood tests/ultra sound from last week. I didn't realize I'd have to pee in a cup when I got there... so I had to eek out as much as I could since I always "go" before I leave the house! Luckily it was enough! The nurse lady took me into the room and asked me a million questions. Then she went through my file and was going to have the doc give me a Pap... and I was like, "Uh, I already had that done"... and she looked through my papers again and said, "Oh, ok"... then she got out those paper covers and told me to get undressed and sit on the table and cover up. (I always dread that part). So I do as she said.. and wait... wait.. wait... and then finally the doc comes in and says, "Oh, you didn't need to get undressed"... (uuugh! what!?). I told her that the nurse told me to - like I was going to just volunteer to sit there with nothing but a thin sheet of paper over me! Sheesh. Apparently the nurse didn't look at my file close enough to see that I'd already had a couple of OTHER tests done too. So, there I sat in the pink paper, while the doctor went over things with me! (Oh well, get used to it, right?) Thankfully, everything seems to be going well... I have a high hemoglobin #, which means I'm not iron deficient... I don't have HIV or any other diseases... so things are right on track!! I even lost a pound... which I was SHOCKED to see! I figured I'd step on that scale and see it go up by at least 5! So... back in 4 weeks I go!! I'm looking forward to getting a belly and hopefully a bit of energy back!!

Ok... now onto the recipe! I'm not sure if I've shared this before... but it's a super easy recipe if you're ever in the mood to eat bread sticks with your favorite italian dish!


2 1/2 cups Flour
4 tsp. Sugar
3 tsp. Baking Powder
1 tsp. Salt
1 1/3 cups Milk
4-6 T. butter, melted *you may not even need that much!*
Garlic Powder (optional)
Grated Parmesan Cheese (optional)

-->In a small bowl, combine first 4 ingredients. Gradually add milk and stir to form a soft dough.
-->Turn onto floured surface and gently knead 3-4 times.
-->Grease a cookie sheet (w/ edges) and roll or press dough (1/2" thick) onto cookie sheet.
-->Using a pizza cutter/roller, cut bread sticks into desired size.
-->Brush melted butter over dough... and sprinkle with garlic powder, parmesan cheese, etc.
-->Bake at 450 degrees for 14-18 mins or until slightly browned on top.


Wednesday, June 23, 2010


This past Saturday was an Annual Volkswagen Cruise in a nearby town. My dad and I drove in it last year with my bug and camper, accompanied by Cory, my nephew and my dad's dog. This year, since my camper is out of commission (needs a new carburetor), I took my two nephews in my bug and my dad took my niece in another guys bug (my dad just repainted it, etc for the guy). The kids were excited!

Here are the kids in front of my bug...

We walked around a bit checking out other people's cars...

And when it got too hot, we sought shade in our cars to wait until the Cruise started...

A funny little story...
As my dad was talking VW with other enthusiasts, the kids and I decided it was too hot out in the sun and headed for the cars. Well, since my car was full with the 2 boys, myself and a passenger seat with my purse and other misc. items, I told my niece to just go ahead and sit in the passenger seat of the red bug until my dad came around. That way she could catch some of the breeze through the open window while we waited. Well, as time went by, people walked around and some would come over to check out our cars...
A guy came by the red bug and asked Madelyn "what year it was"...
Her 8 yr old response, "2010."
Apparently he wanted to know the year of the car... but she didn't understand and thought he was asking what year it was right now.

We got a good laugh when she told us that story!!

We took a different route than last year... which I was a little disappointed about. But it was a nice drive! We didn't follow the whole route since it was LONG, but we went about half way and then turned off when we got back into my hometown. All of the other bugs (except the one that broke down!) were headed another 30 miles out of town for a picnic.

If you liked to see some more pics, my sister posted a few that she took over on her blog!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Just Checkin' In...

Lately I have been a huge slug! It's rather depressing... but I just don't have any energy! Today, in an effort to get moving again... I've done dishes, stripped the bed and washed/hung out the sheets, watered the flowers outside, took care of the chickens... and OK, I spent an hour and a half on the couch finishing a book (it was a good book!). I am about to make some cookies for Cory's lunches... but thought I would drop by and say Hello! I have a few things to post about... but I haven't made the effort to upload some photos. I hope to get to it at least by Wednesday (tomorrow I won't be around because I have to throw some pots on the kick wheel for a VBS lesson somewhere beyond my hometown---my mom agreed to help out some church with the clay project for their VBS and I agreed to go with her to demonstrate on the wheel).... so I am hoping to post about my weekend in the next couple of days!! Maybe I'll even have a couple of pics from the VBS to share.

I did want to share this photo with you from Cory's birthday earlier this month. We didn't really do a whole lot. I held back my gagging and made him a meatloaf dinner, which he'd requested... and he opened some presents... then we went to his parents for ice cream cake (which made me want to gag! haha!) Anyway... as he was opening the few presents I got him... I snapped this shot. It was totally posed... but I still think it's funny!

Oh yeah.. and a side note... we were looking online at houses for sale in the area last night. We like our little house and neighborhood... but we would like to move more out of town with a bigger house and more property. It's slim pickin's... but there was this one stone house with quite a bit of property that caught my eye! It seemed perfect! The price wasn't even too bad.... but Cory burst my bubble when he told me that there wasn't any water at the house anymore. They had done stripping in the land around the house and it totally messed up the water supply... and the stripping companies don't have to pay to fix it. So this awesome stone house is now useless with a very little, crappy water supply! BUMMER! Oh well! We can keep looking!

Off to make cookies!

Friday, June 18, 2010

Flashback Friday #30

Today's Flashback Friday Theme is about Fathers! Father's Day is right around the corner... and unfortunately, I won't be able to spend it with my dad. I will see him Saturday though when we go on a "Volkswagen Cruise"... so I'm looking forward to that!

I rummaged through my pictures and realized that I don't have any from when I was really small. They are all at my parents house in their photo albums. I did find several to share though! (Please don't mind the crappy quality because I took pics of the pics)

I don't know if this was a school pic or what... but it's cute!!

Definitely a school pic... maybe junior high?

This might be his senior pic... but I'm not sure!

I think it's kind of creepy that my mom's face is totally covered by that lady's hair!!

This was on our vacation to Sea World in Ohio. I think I was in 5th grade here (notice my lovely scrunched/rolled socks! hahahaha).

This was at my birthday one year... I think my 20th!
(Mandie... LOL... my dad's shirt!)

This pic is from my wedding in May '09!

My dad is one of the only people I really look up to. I am like him in a lot of ways... some by chance, some on purpose. We have similar tempers (we hold it in until we blow!). He was always a good role model... having never done drugs, drank, smoked... and I strived (and succeeded!) to be like him! I used to try to write like him when I was a kid (I did pretty good too... although it wasn't hard since it was pretty much chicken scratch!).
Now that I live an hour away, I always look forward to my trips back home (usually once a week) and always make sure that I give him a hug and tell him I love him before I leave.

I Love You, Dad!

Head over to Christopher&Tia's to share your flashback... or browse others!!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

The Mind of a Child

My niece blew me away the other day.

We were riding in my car for a whole 3 minutes on our way to meet some family for lunch. I had an old CD from one of my all time favorite bands, Madison Greene, in the player and it turned on when I turned my car on. After the first couple of seconds of the song, my niece (who will be turning 9 next month) says to me:

"Hey, I remember this! You made me that dress... but it was too big so we had to tie it in the back... then I was dancing and tried to do a forward roll and the knot from the dress hurt my back!"

Sounds like some simple memory, right?

Madison Greene just happened to be playing in my town... so I made little miss Maddy a hippie dress to twirl around in... and what she said actually happened. I remember it myself because she was so darn cute dancing off to the side of the stage! Her little red curls bouncing as she went!

Those were good times... but the thing that blew me away is that it just so happens that the memory she was recalling was from when she was 2 yrs and 2 months old!!! I remember because she had turned 2 in July and they had played in my town in September!

I still can't believe she remembered those details! I don't know about you... but I can't remember anything from when I was 2, unless I look at a picture! Even when I was a kid, my earliest memories start when I was maybe 3... not JUST having turned 2!!

I got a little chuckle from her that day... and it still makes me smile just to think about it!!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Today We Will See...


Today is my first ultrasound.... I'm nervous.

Part of me is obviously excited, but another part of me is just nervous to think that this is all actually happening... and it's going to be confirmed today with a heart beat! (At least I'm praying that all is well and we hear a heart beat!)

I am definitely not looking forward to drinking so much water and HOLDING IT... but I guess it's just what ya have to do (unfortunately). Do they make you do that EVERY time? Even when your stomach gets really big?? I can't imagine that it matters much once your uterus overshadows your bladder.... but I really have no idea!

On another note...

I'm dealing with a little guilt... #1 because I haven't been eating very well. I just can't bring myself to eat "healthy" foods. I can get some fruits and veggies down.... but mostly I can only stomach pizza and cereal. Every once and awhile I can eat something else... but I just feel guilty because I know I'm not doing baby any favors (and I think I'm gaining more weight than I should be right now which irritates me). And #2, I feel guilty because I have friends who would like to have children and who haven't been able to.... and it's hard to share in my experience when I want to be sensitive to them and their issues. Just kind of makes me feel alienated... but perhaps I'm just doing that to myself!

Oh well.

Hopefully I'll have a good report and possibly a picture to share later on!!

Happy Wednesday!

Here is our little baby!!
7 weeks, 2 days!
Estimated Due Date: Jan 31!
Heart beat was 152!

What a Blessing!!!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

A Blast From the Past!

The other day I was at my dad's Auto Body Shop. He has a TV in the waiting room which sometimes gets tuned into CMT just for the background noise. (That Carrie Underwood song "Temporary Home" gets me every time!! *Tear*).

Anyway... all of a sudden I heard this song playing.... and it transported me back in time to when I was in elementary school... at my neighbor's house.... where we spent MOST of our time in the summers... often calling in to a local radio station to request songs and then using blank tapes to record the songs as they came onto our tape player/FM Radio. I seriously still have some of those tapes!

Well... the song that was on CMT was Jerrod Niemann (who I'd never even heard of before) singing "Lover, Lover". Have you ever heard it??

This was the version I knew (from the early 90's):

Totally cheesie.... but I still LOVE it! Hahaha!!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Funny Story

I've been kind of MIA from blogging... mainly because I've been busy... but also because I have been TOTALLY wiped out! I read in my "What to Expect When You're Expecting" book that a pregnant woman's RESTING body is doing more work than a non-pregnant woman running a marathon! I can totally believe it! I feel like I need to nap every 20 mins! Haha!


Friday, my hubby was alone because I was volunteering until late. He was keeping himself busy around the house most of the evening since I was having a little Spa Party the next day.

Well, he had used some caulk around our kitchen sink earlier in the evening (that guy loves to caulk!)... and around 10:15PM, he said he decided to take the caulk back down to the basement.

Now you must understand, our basement is also our garage. You come down the steps to our laundry area and on the other end of the house is a garage door.

Cory goes downstairs and tosses the tube of caulk into this "catch-all" box that we have... when all of a sudden the garage door starts opening! Our garage door is the LOUDEST garage door I have ever heard. It sounds like a garbage truck when it's picking up a dumpster to empty. This loud BRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR sound (I feel bad for the neighbors when we use it!)!

Cory about jumps out of his skin and craps his pants all at the same time! He hurries to grab this utility knife we keep down there and tries to watch the door as it's going up to see if he could see any legs or feet.

Not sure what the heck was going on, he runs up the stairs and presses the button to make the door go back down... then he goes out our back door to stake things out. All the while, his heart is hammering in his ears as he is imagining someone jumping out from behind the shadows!!

Finally, after not being able to find anything suspicious... he starts calming down and decides to go back to the basement to return the massive knife... and he took a gander in the "catch-all" box.

What does he find?

A garage door opener underneath a couple of misc. items.


The whole time... he was the one who had caused the door to open when he threw the tube of caulk in the box! I died laughing when he told me! Even as I've tried to fall asleep the past couple of nights... I think about it and it makes me laugh out loud!

My husband is a silly guy! But honestly, if it were me, I probably would have done the same thing! Or have been too freaked out to stake things out! I would've gone upstairs and hid! HAHAHA!

Friday, June 11, 2010

Flashback Friday #29

I am off to my hometown today to visit with my great aunt who is up for a short stay from Florida! I haven't seen her since my wedding in May '09... so I'm looking forward to it!

Today's Flashback is going to be quick... It's a picture of my mom and dad on their wedding day! They will be celebrating 30 years in July!

I remember when I was a kid, trying on my mom's wedding dress just for fun.... and it was always TOO SMALL!!! Ugh! Oh yeah and I must mention... my dad had a beard but SHAVED IT THAT MORNING!!! My mom was none too happy about that! Needless to say, he's had a beard for the rest of their 30 years of marriage! LOL!

Join in the Flashback fun over at Christopher&Tia's!!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Lemonade Please!

No really... PLEASE!

I want some lemonade!!! A big tall glass of it with crushed ice. It's all I ask for....

I'll even just take the ice!!

(We don't have our ice maker hooked up... and our ice trays don't fit well in the freezer... so we have no ice... and I'm so tired of drinking water that stays cold for about 2 seconds after I pour it. Does not taste well with my all day "morning sickness"-icky-mouth-taste.)


Monday, June 7, 2010


Well, I have been slacking in my posting a little bit lately... mainly due to ALL DAY "morning sickness". (If you missed the announcement... check out the end of my post HERE!) So far I have been spared from hugging the toilet (THANK GOODNESS)... but I have been struggling with smells and horrible nausea, especially the past few days.

Saturday we were supposed to go to this fancy shmancy wedding in Pittsburgh, PA for one of Cory's college friends. We felt really bad... but we didn't go. Not only have we been dealing with flooding issues in our basement (and there were flood warnings for our region that evening)... the wedding was semi-formal, over 2 hours away AND you had to STAND throughout the whole ceremony! It was in the Carnegie Museum of Natural Science (or something) on the Grand Staircase. It would have been really cool to go... but I didn't know if I could survive 5 hours in the car... and also standing amongst strangers in an unknown place with a queasy stomach for who knows how long! I really hate to RSVP that we are coming and then back out, but I think we had a couple of good reasons. (I'm sure the wedding was beautiful though... I look forward to seeing pictures!)

Sunday, I literally spent most of the day laying around the house after church (I don't even know how I made it through church, honestly). Cory was awesome and did laundry (even hung it out on the line!), washed dishes, made me food and vacuumed upstairs. I didn't even have to ask him! (I know, I hit the jackpot with that one!) It was a miserable day for me... but I am grateful for the opportunity to house a baby in my belly... and hopefully this will all pass sooner rather than later!!

I wanted to share a couple of pictures from last week's unexpected special delivery via the USPS! I don't know if you caught my PROJECT SNAIL MAIL post... but I only had 2 responses--which I'm totally cool with! The lovely Tessica was the first to email me... and I sent out a little letter to her after we got back from our Anniversary Mini-Vacation. (NOTE: You should totally check out her blog... she is constantly doing awesome giveaways!!) Well, I went out to the mailbox the other day and saw that I had two thick envelopes there waiting for me! My first thought was... "YEA!!!!"... my second was, "OH CRAP.. What did I buy?" (that I forgot about?)... however, I then checked out the return address labels and realized they were BOTH from Tessica! HOW FUN!I had already spilled the beans to her about being preggo in the letter I sent her (before I posted it here)... so this is what she sent me!
She said that she used to read that book to her daughter... how sweet! And she also sent sticky notes, stickers and little tags... and a pin that she made! I was so excited!! It's always fun to get goodies in the mail!! Unfortunately, in my reply back to her... I was feeling a little under the weather... so when I sealed it up, I totally forgot to send her any fun stuff back! I will have to be on the ball next time!! If anyone else wants to join in the snail mail project, you can email me your address to livingthesmalltownlife@gmail.com or check it out over at OH MANDIE!

Thanks TESSICA for your thoughtful gift!!

Friday, June 4, 2010

Flashback Friday #28

Join in the Flashback Fun over at Christopher & Tia's!

Since it is now officially summer (at least in my book)... I thought I'd share a picture from Summer Camp the year I was going into 6th grade. There was this great little camp on the shores of Lake Erie (a couple of hours from where I grew up) called Camp Judson. I only went there one summer for a week. That was enough drama for me! My two cousins and neighbor went with me and we all stayed in the same cabin. It was a ton of fun... and like I said, a ton of drama! The thing I remember the most was the HOTTTTT sailing instructor. Man, he was FINE!

Ok.. here is the picture... that is my cousin on the left, me in the middle and my neighbor on the right. My other cousin got cut out of the picture... but what can you expect when another little kid is snapping a pic on a 120 camera from the early 90's?

Oh... and one more shot I thought I'd share was from May 21st of this year (yeah, I know... not too long ago...)

(Ok... I know the line is faint... but trust me... it was positive... I've been to the doc!)

Thursday, June 3, 2010

I Need Your Help!

So, the other week my sister had a SPA PARTY at her house. We tested out some really nice hand and foot scrubs/creams... a funky lip conditioner and warming face wash... and this really great heat pack for your neck. It was nice to just relax and be pampered! Well, I decided to book a party myself. I live an hour away from my sister... but the woman was willing to come that far.

So here is where I need your help!! My party is in a couple of weekends and it is at 1 in the afternoon. I wanted to serve some simple refreshing appetizer/snack type foods (assuming that most people would grab a quick lunch before they come)... but I'm not sure what to serve exactly! I was thinking maybe small finger sandwiches (tuna, egg salad)?... fresh fruit?... cheese?... angel food cake?

If you have any ideas, lay 'em on me!