Saturday, August 28

I'm having computer issues... If you need me look for a crazy lady with mascara stains down her face banging her head against a laptop.

I'll be back as soon as possible.

Wednesday, August 25

Wordless Wednesday...

Sidewalk chalk= summer

Tuesday, August 24

Cupcakes again...

I'm circling the cupcakes like a turkey vulture does roadkill. Circling....circling...circling.

Is it me or is it twice as hard to commit to a diet...cough, I mean a better way of eating when your away from home. Just shy of a week and I feel the scales tipping and my pants getting tighter. Four weeks from home has me vexed with vision of added poundage.

I could walk the aisle of the farmers market all the while knowing there are four pints of ice cream in the freezer where I'm staying. Switching homes in the next day or so will only create a different- yummy- problem. (Smile...thinking of my moms food and Egg Mc E's. made by my dad.)

Working out seems so anti-social. How's that for a good excuse. Either way, I'm a master of denial and a glutton for punishment. Someone pass me a cupcake...I mean a carrot.

Tuesday: The Burning Question

What is the last thing you baked without using a box?
From scratch.

I enjoy baking, but I'm not great at it.
The last thing I made from scratch
would have to be banana-walnut muffins.

What about you? Feel free to share your recipe.

Monday, August 23

Sorry for the long absence.

On Wednesday morning we got a call that my husband's grandmother passed away. So, we packed our bags and headed out within a few hours. The drive took over 18 hours because of traffic in Toronto and at the border into the US... It was a long and emotional weekend, but sharing this time with family was nice. She will be missed by many.

We were planning on driving here in a few weeks, so now our stay will be extended. I will be back to posting regularly starting today. Lots of adventure in store for the next few weeks.

The winner of the Mabelline New York Great Lash Mascara is 2 kids and 8 cats, congrats!

How was your weekend?

Wednesday, August 18

Wordless Wednesday...Fresh

One of my favorite things about summer is the farmers market.

Have a wonderful day!

Congrats Furygirl3132 for winning the Lawry's Grill Kit giveaway.
Remember, to enter my Mabelline N.Y. Great Lash Mascara Giveaway...Here

Tuesday, August 17

Tuesday: The Burning Question

It's a fill in the blank...burning question kind of day.
Sometimes the first thing that comes to mind has a lot of truth behind it.
I wish ____________________________________.
If I could I would _________________________ all day.
I love when _____________________________ .

Without over thinking it, here are my answers.
(I thought of "better" answers later on, but I wanted to go with my first thoughts. It's part of the fun.)

I wish for great health and happiness.

If I could I would ride horses all day.

I love when my husband walks out of his office (at home) in the middle of the
afternoon and pulls me dance. (It happened today.)

Photo from our stay in the mobe...last Fall in Idaho while Mr. was doing research.

I'm looking forward to reading your answers....
Have a lovely day!

Saturday, August 14

Glamour Glammy's! 2 giveaways!

I've always appreciated the Glammy Award that Glamour bestows upon beauty champions in the knock down, drag out ring of cosmetics, so I thought I'd share them with you. As a bonus, I am giving one of the items away. Keep reading....

2010 Glammy Awards Winners:
(text and photos from Glamour magazine)
Best Lip Glosses or Lipstick:

From drugstores: L’Oréal Paris Colour Riche Lipcolour ($9). “This is one impressive lipstick.” So hydrating, “you don’t need to put on lip balm first,” says a fan.

From department/specialty stores: MAC Tinted Lipglass ($14). This four-time winner’s “glamorous and kissable” shine stays put “even through a meal.” A “perfect complement to your smile.”

Best Body Product: From drugstores: St. Ives Fresh Skin Invigorating Apricot Scrub ($4). “Stimulates and de-stresses” while delivering “smooth” skin. And it’s “budget-friendly.”

From department/specialty stores: Bath & Body Works Signature Collection Body Lotion in Japanese Cherry Blossom ($11, This three-time winner is “flowery” and “seductive,” and it also gets the job done. “Even keeps elbows soft.”

Best Self Tanner: From drugstores: Jergens Natural Glow Firming Daily Moisturizer ($9). Four-time winner! Get a “sun-kissed glow” with this “moisturizing” formula. It’s “hard to mess up.”

From department/specialty stores: Clarins Self Tanning Instant Gel ($33). Perfect for getting a “summer tan during fall months,” this “streak-free” stuff has a faithful following—readers love it for the fourth year in a row!

Best Eye Creams: From drugstores: Olay Regenerist Eye Lifting Serum ($19). This five-time winner hides “the fact that I never get enough sleep.” Followers swear that it “definitely helps with puffiness” but feels “weightless.”

From department/specialty stores: Clinique All About Eyes ($47). Five-time winner! “Attacks dark circles,” leaving under-eyes “refreshed.” Confesses one voter: “I got my husband to use it.”

The Best Facial Moisturizers:

From drugstores:
Aveeno Positively Radiant Daily Moisturizer SPF 30 ($14). The “superlight” skin saver “evens skin tone” with “no trace of greasiness.” Bonus: extra sun protection.

From department/specialty stores: Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion ($24). This six-time winner is nicknamed “liquid awesome.” One fan would want it “on a desert island.”

The Best Wrinkle Fighters: From drugstores: Olay Regenerist Micro-Sculpting Cream ($25). This “miracle” cream “makes small wrinkles disappear.” Says one reader: “At age 33, I’m usually mistaken for 24.”

From department/specialty stores: Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair Synchronized Recovery Complex ($48). “In less than a week,” this “smooths wrinkles.” Fans “wake up” to glowy skin.

The Best Mascaras: From drugstores: Maybelline New York Great Lash Mascara ($6.50). This six-time winner “Lengthens” and “plumps” skimpy lashes “without being clumpy.” This classic “never fails to deliver.”

From department/specialty stores: Dior Diorshow Mascara ($24). The brush gives you “mile-long lashes” and “great volume,” making this “well worth the price.” Two coats is “perfect for a night out.”

The Best Shampoos: From drugstores: Pantene Pro-V Restore Beautiful Lengths Breakage Defense Shampoo ($5). Hair looks “healthier, less damaged” after one wash.

From department stores/salons: Biolage Hydrating Shampoo ($14). The go-to for a “fabulous hair day,” this nondrying shampoo keeps color looking “fresh and new.”

The Best Conditioners: From drugstores: Pantene Pro-V Restore Beautiful Lengths Breakage Defense Conditioner ($5). Even heat-styling addicts get “soft and silky” hair after a five-minute conditioning session. “No more brittle ends.”

From department stores/salons: Biolage Colorcarethérapie Color Care Conditioner ($15). This color-treated hair savior “prevents dryness and fading” but “doesn’t weigh hair down.”

The Best Foundations: From drugstores: Maybelline New York Dream Matte Mousse Foundation ($9). Blends so well it looks “airbrushed”; “my coworkers don’t think I wear makeup.”

From department/specialty stores: Bare Escentuals BareMinerals Original SPF 15 Foundation ($25). Six-time winner! “Camouflages blemishes” but it “doesn’t feel like I’m wearing a mask.”

The Best Nail Polish:

From drugstores: Revlon Nail Enamel in Revlon Red ($5). The “straight-up red” color is the “ultimate classic” that looks “timelessly sexy” on readers’ nails and lasts like a “salon pedicure.”

From department/specialty stores: OPI Nail Lacquer in Lincoln Park After Dark ($9). Perhaps the “most unique naughty purple around,” this gives you “rock-star feet.”

The Best Blush: From drugstores: CoverGirl Cheekers Blush ($4.50). This “affordable” blush—a six-time winner—has women hooked because of its “vibrant” colors that don’t “look or feel cheap when you put them on.”

From department/specialty stores: NARS Blush ($26). Readers’ favorite shade, Orgasm, delivers “color without looking too blush-y” and “makes me feel sexy.”

Best New Gadget:

Oh, 2010: the year of the Snooki pouf and orange lips. So what was Glamour readers’ favorite new invention? Meet the winner: Neutrogena Wave Power-Cleanser and Deep Clean Foaming Pads ($10). The little “vibrating” gadget “rejuvenates” and leaves your face “smooth and clear” without being “too abrasive.” The device “completely saved my skin—I can feel it working,” raves one admirer.

***Wanna win all these products?***

You’re in luck, ‘cause Glamour is giving them all away! Five lucky winners will score Glamour totes stuffed to them brim with all of our 2010 Glammy Award-winning products! Enter for your chance to win right here.

I am a huge fan of Mabelline New York Great Lash Mascara! My giveaway to you is not as Glamorous as Glamour, but.... I am going to give one lucky readers a Mabeline New York Great Lash Mascara.

How can you win a Mabelline N.Y. Great Lash Mascara? Tell me one of your beauty favorites. Open to US and Canada. Ends 8/21

Bonus: Place my button on your blog (2 entries)
Follow my blog (2 entries)

Happy Glamorizing!

Tuesday, August 10

Smell that Giveaway!

Have you ever been walking around the neighborhood on a hot summer night and had the smell of grilling stop you right in your tracks? It happens to me all the time. I've been tempted to knock on the door and invite myself to dinner.

My Blog Spark has so kindly offered me the opportunity to review and host a giveaway for Lawry's...that's right I got to try two of their fabulous new marinades and so do you!

Lawry's newest marinades allow you to infuse your meals with exotic flavors without ever leaving your home. Inspired by the sun-drenched villages of Italy, the Tuscan Sun-Dried Tomato Marinade features extra virgin olive oil, sun-dried tomatoes, sweet red bell peppers and the perfect blend of herbs. The Szechuan Sweet & Sour BBQ Marinade gives meat a delicious sweet and sour flavor with a touch of Szechuan heat.

My husband has a mini charcoal grill, but grills like he's the next contestant on BBQ Pitmasters on TLC. It's serious business when he prepares his meat. If he isn't making his own marinade he always reaches for Lawry's!

Easy and delicious are two words I like to hear when cooking. (Technically, the best thing to hear is my husband offering to cook.) When we opened the "Grill Kit" MyBlogSpark and Lawry's sent it was like Christmas in July.

(Sorry the photo is blurry... I had to snap the photo quickly because my husband was eager to experiment.)

Here is what I received and what you can win.
A Tuscan Sun-Dried Tomato and Szechuan Sweet & Sour BBQ marinade,
a set of skewers and a marinating dish with a lid.

Isn't that a great giveaway!

To enter this giveaway:
Tell me who does the grilling at your house. (One entry)
Tell me about one of your fabulous grilled dishes. (One entry)
Follow my blog. (One entry)
Blog about this giveaway. (Five entries) Let me know where, so I can check it out.

Leave a separate comment for each.
This giveaway is open to US only and will end one week from today, August 17th. I will contact the winner by email, so make sure to provide your contact info.

For more ways to put a fresh spin on your go-to grilling menu, check out these new pairings from the recently released McCormick® Flavor ForecastTM 2010: Grilling Edition:

* Applewood & Plum - Juicy plums accent smoky applewood and add flair to all-American barbecue.

* Cilantro & Lime - Cutting across the diverse cuisines, this bright and zingy pair is a refreshing taste of summertime.

* Rosemary & Fig - Figs are an unexpected and regionally inspired match for aromatic rosemary.

* Chipotle & Maple - This culinary comingling deliver a fresh take on smoky, spicy and sweet.

* Brown Sugar & Bourbon - This duo brings a delicious dose of Southern charm to the patio.

* Cinnamon & Coffee - Bold and confident - with just the right edge of bitterness.

* Red Chili Sauce & Mango - The flavor of mango takes hot or sweet red chili sauce far beyond mere "condiment status."

Is your mouth watering? Mine is!

Thanks MyBlogSpark and Lawry's for this opportunity.
I have shared my honest opinion and utilized literature provided by Lawry's.

Tuesday: The Burning Question

This weeks question.....

What is your favorite snack?

Gorge- To devour greedily
This is what I do whenever my mom makes me my favorite snack.
I heart Chex mom's chex mix.

What's your answer?

Sunday, August 8

The "B" Word!

There are only a few things that make me really uncomfortable. At the top of my list is when my husband uses the "b" word.


I scramble for a seat while reaching for a paper bag. (I store them under cushions for such occasions.) Being the gentleman that he is, he's quick to rub my back while I struggle for oxygen, but he is still going to talk about money as soon as I am done gasping. Eventually, I retire my Oscar winning performance for best drama and listen with one ear....

Fast forward...That was me a few years ago. I have since matured (a bit) and listen with both ears and sometimes participate.

When one door closes (more like slams shut on my pretend Christian Louboutin shoes) another one has to open right....right? It's like being in front of 1000 doors with only one key. I had to try a lot of doors to find a way to live with the dreaded b-word.

Door number 1: Didn't open, so I kicked it and broke my big toe.

Door number 13: I decided to shop at second hand stores. While I've always enjoyed them I didn't have to go there. Do you know what I found out? I still don't have to. If you shop at the right time you can get new items at amazing prices. I still go to second hand store, but don't be fooled the prices aren't always better.

Door number 22: I searched high and low for coupons that I can use in Canada. This was sort of a dead end for me. I did find some, but nothing that compares to the US. (If you know of any please pass them along.) Ultimately, like clothing I started shopping smarter. I compare prices and maximize on special. We treat ourselves to a few nice things, but save them for special occasions. I also plan meals. This eliminates waste... I also learned how to can stuff. *Not always a cheaper way to go, but it's still fun to do. (Try finding someone who has a fabulous garden and swap skills or stuff for veggies.)

Door number 30: I learned how to live smarter by going Green. I rarely run my dryer (exception towels), most of our items are unplugged and we have wind up alarm clocks. (Just a few examples.....)

Door number 44: I sold things on Ebay. Bye-bye Chanel jeans that were too small... sniff!

Door number favorite door to date: I decided to try and win most if not all of my gifts for family and friends in 2010. I was embarrassed at first... I didn't want to share this with my readers or family or friends. I didn't want the recipient to think that there wasn't thought put into their gift, which couldn't be further from the truth. I tried to win things for certain people...and a few fun things for me too. I'm having a blast!

Door number 76: I started writing reviews on my blog. It really is a way to try something that I might not be able to buy...what to buy (because of the cost)... didn't know to buy. I also believe honest reviews help others. I love having the opportunity to give something away too.

Door number 89: To dreadful to talk about..... (just kidding)

Door number 101: I learned how to use my sewing machine. If I couldn't win my gifts I could make them. (I'm not sure this is putting me on the "best gift giver" list. :D)

Door number 110: I started doing odd jobs for friends and family. Ex. Dog grooming, cleaning, baby sitting.......

Door number 120: I learned how to ask for help...NOT EASY or fun....and say "yes" when someone offers something. I'm blessed and thankful. For those who have helped my husband and I, we truly look forward to the day that we can repay you.

The doors keep opening and I keep peaking inside.

What are some of your money saving ideas?

*I feel the need to explain myself....If we were in the United States I would be working full-time. Since my French is dismal my options are limited. Experience is priceless....

Saturday, August 7

No Fool's Gold Here!

(Photo from my middle sister's family room window.)

Believe it or not I didn't take a lot of photos while in Michigan. It's usually me (perhaps a control thing) that has the camera up to my eye at any and all gatherings. For some reason I set down the camera and lived in the moment. It's not stored on film, but in my mind. Sometimes photos last long there and I can imagine myself thin. (Smile)

(Photo from "Girls weekend"...the cottage of my oldest sister.)

It's a great thing to bring friends together. I'm amazed by the love and compassion that surrounds us. Although, we all have busy lives and many responsibilities there's a comfort in knowing they are only a phone call away. Girls weekend made me realize that my problems are not unique and I'm not alone. When any of us want to be a little bit crazy (which we didn't do this time, but have in the past) we are there to protect each other or join in.

Real friends are a treasure. When you open the chest there are pieces of rock, slime and sometimes bits of fool's gold. You're tricked at first, but soon realize it's not the real thing. After healing from the scratches, cuts or embarrassment you learn to dig deeper. The surface is easy to see, but the real thing is still waiting to be discovered. Then with patience you find your way to the bottom to find shining gems. Their beauty is undeniable. With all the different shapes and sizes.... each and every one amazing in their one unique way.... it's a treasure.... A real chest of friends.

Do you have a special gem of a friend?
When is the last time you talked to him/her?

Thursday, August 5


Please tell me that absence made your heart grow fonder. I just returned from my girls weekend as well as seeing some of my family. Limited internet and not enough hours in the day caused this gap..... lots to share.

Mr. got bit by the love bug and greeted me with.....
It was a great week with friends and family, but nothing
beats being home with my man.

I've got a lot of catching up to do on all of your blogs. Let me know if you have a fun~or~fabulous post you'd like to highlight.