Thursday, July 31, 2008


Just had to share!
Have a GREAT weekend!

NOT for the faint of heart...

Renee of Life with My Special Ks was on my mind all morning! LOL! Renee, if you are reading this, take a Valium girlfriend! This is a typical day at my house...and why we don't buy a really nice kitchen table!
Today we had some extra kids in the house and it was really hot outside so I raided my laundry room closet which has been dubbed, "The Art Center." If you know anything about me, you know no matter where I have lived, I have had an art center. Post-children, I now have multiple art centerS. One that has glue sticks and construction paper and a couple that have advertising markers, x-acto knives and paper you can't buy at WalMart.
So, I rummage through the many supply-stuffed totes and I grab the most colorful and plentiful containers, bring them to the table and call to the masses, "CRAAAAAAAAAAAAAAFT TIIIIIIIIIIIIIME!" And they all came a'running!
I opened some Elmer's glue and squirted a bunch on the paper in front of my 3 year old. He proceeded to take a small bag of beads the size of poppy seeds and .... DUMP! They landed (mostly) on the glue and a gallon a couple fell to the floor. He looked at me like, "Woah, that was so cool!" Can you hear the sound that made? Kind of like one of those rain sticks but not contained in the stick-like structure. (breathe, Renee, breathe!)
About 15 minutes into it, the older kids were ready to call it a day and watch a movie or play. The baby, however, was just getting started!! He started pressing his hands into the glue and then using it as a facial exfoliator. Not too much exfoliation being done when you can move your hands because THEY ARE GLUED TO YOUR FACE! I rinsed his hands with a washcloth but they didn't stay clean for long.
His big trick then was to REMOVE all the things from his artwork, glue them to place them on the table and start all over again. It was kind of like what you would read on the side of one of those pricey Spa Products: Apply generously. Rub in. Rinse. Repeat.
I talked him into being done. Grabbed the vacuum and LICKETY SPLIT...there was no sign on glue, beads, NOTHING!
See! Any one of you can do this! Just take a few "happy pills" first! LOL!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008


Inside: Praying for a better day!

Inside: Happy Birthday, big girl!

Inside: Blank

Inside: Blank

Inside: know I am here for you

Alright, you asked for it! The above are 5 original designs I have made into notecards. Nothing fancy, just quad-folded paper cards. But, as always, I am raising money for it's 4 the kids! $1.00 a piece, your choice, free shipping! Leave your order and email address in the comments section. PayPal orders ship same day.

One Hot Mama's Tuesday Post...

So, ladies!! Today is CHECK IN DAY! In the comments section, if you have started the program with the rest of us let us know HOW you are doing by answering the following questions... 1. How much did you lose? 2. What was your biggest triumph this week? Why? 3. What was your lowest point? Why? 4. What is your goal for next week? (Doesn't have to be weight related) What I want you to focus on this week is AMNESIA EATING! Those things you habitually stick in your mouth without thinking about them... the handful of fries out of the bottom of the happy meal box, a handful of M & Ms from the candy bowl on the counter, the pina colada you order when you go out to dinner tonight. It all adds up! If you did JUST those three things today, you would have sacrificed almost 550 calories! That's DINNER! An OHM! member emailed me this week and said she was having trouble with sticking to her calories, she seemed to use them up before dinner and then was left feeling defeated. I suggested to her and I will make the suggestion to you, especially those of you who are newbies to the counting calories thing, give yourself a guide for each meal! Let's say you have 1500 for the day...that's MY calorie level. Keep your breakfast at 250 Lunch at 350 Dinner at 600 and that gives you 300 calories for snacks throughout the day. Adjust these totals as you see fit. Maybe you are a light eater at breakfast and a cup of yogurt will suit you just fine, split those left over calories between lunch and dinner. I found when I first started counting calories that if I wrote down everything I ate, I was SHOCKED at the things I would have completely forgotten about. Take making dinner, for example, I ate almost the same amount of calories while MAKING dinner as I did EATING it! Two dinners? That will keep the weight packing on...or not coming off! You really have to get it in your journal! I am hoping you all have one! So, before it's too late, think back to EVERY morsel you put in your mouth and write it down, add it in, if you go over today, steal some calories from the next two days and cut back a little. TODAY'S BIG SECRET: Drink extra water if you messed up, it will flush out a multitude of sins!!! If you are looking for the beginning of this OHM! course, head to this post and this one to catch yourself up! Join us! We are a bunch of LOSERS!!!!

Monday, July 28, 2008

The JONAS BROTHERS came to my house!

Demi Lovato
Avril Lavigne
Nick Jonas
Joe Jonas (my favorite)

Kevin Jonas Well, not really but they were CLOSE to my house! They were in Hershey Friday night - Chocolate World is about an hour away from ME!

What a GREAT concert! My kids had NO VOICES when we left at 11:30 pm Friday night! Thanks Nick, Joe and Kevin...this mom REALLY enjoyed your show! We also enjoyed Demi Lavato from CAMP ROCK and Avril Lavigne who kept her songs clean for the teeny-bopper crowd! But guess what you do at a JONAS BROTHERS concert? THIS....

You sign their bus!!! Here's one of my little graffitti artists at work!!

All of the little vandals - pleased with their work (and the fact that they are TOUCHING THE JONAS BROS BUS!!!!!)

Of course, the grown ups (Me, Giggy and Goose) had to get in on the action, too! We're fun like that!

Note to parents: I couldn't count the number of PHONE NUMBERS, EMAILS AND MYSPACE ADDRESSES that girls left on this bus. PUH-LEASE tell your girls to be safe!! This bus could actually be a pedophile's dream come true! BE CAREFUL! Talk to your girls about this if they head out to see a JONAS BROS concert!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Date night re-cap...

Showered and primped while the baby napped, picked up the babysitter at 5, met my hubby at home...I was ready! I had shaved my legs, painted my nails (fingers and toes), fixed my hair and checked myself in the mirror like 100 times! Looking a little different than I did when I used to primp in 1993. While my body may have grown, so has my heart (by three kids) and I wouldn't trade a model's figure for that! EVER! So, we jumped in the car, waved goodbye and watched as the littlest one "raced" us as far as he could run. We were FREE!!! It doesn't happen often but when it does...I worry that I didn't kiss them enough, that I was too quick to shout, "NO!" when a toy flew into the toilet, that I could have smiled more or sang KUMBAYA while they brushed their teeth this morning. OK! That's taking it a little too far but do you ever feel that way? Like you wished the day away just because you were looking forward to a night out? We started our night at The Canal Street Pub. I had Tomato Dill Soup, we shared hummus and pita and we each got the Panini of the Day...turkey, basil, tomato and pesto. I think if the varnish on the table wasn't so sticky that our arms stuck to the table every time we leaned in to chat I would say it was a perfect dinner. I tried a new beer. Samuel Smith Nut Brown Ale - yummy! We left feeling like we would POP before we got to the dessert but maybe we would grab some COLD STONE on the way home. Do you all have COLD STONE? Holy CROW, that stuff is like an O---sm in a cup! My favorite is Germanchokolatekake! We unbuttoned our pants as soon as we got in the car left and headed to see what was playing at the closest theatre. Can you say, WILL SMITH! Now, I am not a fan of the blow-em-up-and-wipe-the-screen-with-their-lifeless-carcass kind of movies but if Mr. Smith's name rolls across the wide screen, I AM THERE! He is a native Philadelphian, ya know. He is from MY neck of the woods - step off Jada! (LOL! Just kidding! But he IS on my list!!) So, HANCOCK was playing. My hubby says, "Are ya sure you don't wanna see a chick flick? Momma Mia is playing." Awwww, ain't he sweet. I looked at him over my glasses and said, "Hmmmm. Let me think about that. Will Smith. Women singing Abba." We chuckled and he bought us two tickets for HANCOCK! The movie started with a machine gun shoot out on a freeway. Then a man, his wife (?) and their 3-year old came into our row and got comfortable. WHAT?! Now, please understand, I was SO not concerned about the noise this baby would make during the movie, no. My brain was already imagining her beating the #$%^& out of some nerd behind the bleachers outside her high school because she was exposed to so much violence at an early age. From that point on, it was a struggle for me to keep my mind on the movie and not want to reach over and cover her eyes or ask if I could take her out to the lobby to play. It was killing me that she was watching blood and guts! Just look...and this is a preview acceptable for ALL audiences... The movie ended up co-starring Charlize Theron so hubby had his eye-candy, too. One cancels out the other and it's all good. We are not the jealous type. Raced home to relieve the babysitter and we are headed to bed. Action movies make me sleepy. I was thinking about how cool it would be to do an interview with Will Smith (hopefully he would be dressed in the same dirt-ball clothes he was in for the whole beginning of the movie) on being a Dad. I am going to work on that one. I would love to have him be a guest on my blog! I would pee! Thanks so much for all the Anniversary wishes! We had a GREAT day! We did the math and figured we could conceivably have three more 15ths. That would make us 83! Kinda cool! But I bet we'll be wrinkly!

15 years ago today...

I said, "I do!" to the most amazing man in the world ... Ken!
September 14th 1989 I went to Penn State for the weekend to visit my boyfriend and I met his roommates Ken and Todd. The next semester I joined them at Main Campus and for the next few years my friendship grew with Ken. He was my sounding board, a late night talk or a big warm hug when my "less than amazing" boyfriend would let me down. My mom once said to me when I called home, "Why don't you just date Ken, you talk more about him than you do R---."
I replied, "Oh, Mom, he is way too nice. I wouldn't be able to stand being treated so well!" (WHAT?!)
By the end of our junior year we had both parted ways with our college sweethearts. During finals week, early one morning when we were supposed to be studying he smiled and said, "She (ex-girlfriend) told me this would happen."
I look around confused. "What?"
"She told me that I would fall in love with you!"
And the rest is history!
(I love that story!)
July 24, 1993 in front of all our friends and family (almost 300 of them!) we said our "I do's" and danced to Marc Cohn's TRUE COMPANION!
**Funny piece of trivia ... September 14, 1997 (8 years, to the day, after we met) our first baby was born!
You have been my rock ever since that first day we met. You are beautiful in every way! God has blessed me with a life-long best friend and I praise Him everyday for the love we share! You make me feel safe. You are genuine and strong. I truly cannot imagine my life without you. You ARE my True Companion! Now and forever!
Happy Anniversary, Boog!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Big Jumble O'Stuff...

I have a couple things to post about and I was going to try and spread them across the next few days but it is just not possible for my leaking brain to be able to handle that. I think the Spoonies took my brain! LOL! So, you can read all these at once or you can spread them over a couple days - whatever suits your schedule. First, a friend (and former editor) of mine has ventured out and started his own Christian publication. You can peek at it, print it and email him at VictoryExpressions (at) gmail (dot) com. But I CAN'T figure out how to upload the PDF right to this post so you can all have a copy. Can anyone tell me how to do that? (Sorry, Brian! I will get it here, I promise!) This is the first issue so jump in now and when it is a big time will have been with him from the start! ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Also, Lindsay from My Family Meal Planner emailed me yesterday to let me know that she would be sending it's 4 the kids a $50 donation based on the number of books sold from my review. Thanks to those of you who purchased the book. If you haven't, please head over to Lindsay's site. It will no longer benefit it's 4 the kids but you will LOVE LOVE LOVE this book! ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ On that note - I have come up with the Fundraiser that will take it's 4 the kids to the next step and you can help!

Simply email me (michellebrownlow (at) yahoo (dot) com) to register for your very own it's 4 the kids YARD SALE, de-clutter your house, set your date, send it's 4 the kids your profits. It's a win-win, you can clean house AND help cancer families at the same time. Since it's inception in April, it's 4 the kids has sent $478 to a family whose son was going through chemo and dad lost his job and therefore their insurance. The family was selling things (computers, electronics) right out of their home to pay their bills. it's 4 the kids sent $300 to a family in a similar situation whose electricity had been cut due to outstanding bills. Most recently we sent a HUGE package of art supplies to a little girl whose sister has just been put on hospice and is literally dying in the livingroom. This poor little girl needed something to escape to. She will be contributing her artwork to an upcoming line of cards I am developing for the site as well.

PLEASE consider registering and your donations could help where insurance or Make-A-Wish or Ronald McDonald House doesn't.


A friend emailed this to me - I can't even believe I am posting it for LITERALLY the WORLD to see but it was just TOO FRIPPIN' FUNNY to not....

Yep. That's me on my way to a PUNK THEME DANCE in (probably) 9th grade. Oh my!


I lasted ONE DAY on TOPMOMMA.COM but I got a button! I got an email this morning saying, "you have been booted!" Nice!


Here is my VIDEO OF THE WEEK! My little SNEAK! Enjoy!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ OHM!ers! Stick with it! NOTHING TASTES AS GOOD AS SKINNY FEELS!! ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ In the near future, I will be starting a weekly (or so) Children's Book review so stay tuned! It should be a blast! OK...time to go eat myself out of house and home...except I need to be a good OHM!er get on with my day.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Check out my 1st SMILEBOX attempt...

OK, so Dawn talked me into trying this....and I am hooked! You can even pay a small fee and design scrapbook pages and print them out! So, check out my day...Deadlines? What are they? Sheesh!
Click to play A Writer's Life...
Create your own slideshow - Powered by Smilebox
Make a Smilebox slideshow
**MULTIPLE posts today...scroll down to get the scoop!

The ONE HOT MAMA Club starts TODAY...

WOW! There are a lot of you who are interested in losing weight and for a whole plethora of reasons. Many of you commented that you have tried every diet on the planet...The Grapefruit Diet, Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig, The Curl-up-in-the-fetal-position-and-cry-because-you-are-fat Diet. Many of those, with the exception of the last one, will help you shed the pounds you wanted to get rid of for a class reunion (eh-hem), a wedding, after a baby, etc. But how many of us put it all RIGHT BACK ON when that event is over? ME! ME! ME! And apparently, YOU! YOU! YOU!
So, for those of you just joining us - go back to the first OHM! post and catch yourself up, it's not too late to start!
For those of you who started with us last week, you now have a better idea of how many calories you WERE eating and how many you SHOULD be eating to reach your goal weigh before the year 3000! So, TODAY IS THE FIRST DAY OF THE REST OF YOUR LIFE! My dad used to say that in the morning as he was dragging me out of bed for the bus and it used to get on my nerves...but low and behold, it's one more think that your parents say that one day makes a whole lot of sense.
So, your assignment for this week is as follows:
1. Post your findings, "a-ha" moments, your gripes and any weight loss or gain in the comments section below (ANYONE can do this, even if you didn't "sign up" on the last OHM! post)
2. Stick to the calorie level you chose after reading the first OHM! post the whole week. If you know there will be a day that will be next to impossible for you to stay within your calories, cut back on the days leading up to your event or those after the event. Save 50- 100 calories (no more) for a couple days to be able to have a piece of guilt-free birthday cake or a pina colada (or two).
3. WATER! WATER! WATER! I will hound you on this one! You will find, even if you go over your calories one day, water will flush away the "sins" as well as the salt and other toxins that your fat cells (little demons!) want to hold on to.
4. The main thing I want you to think about this week is HOW/WHERE you eat. Do you eat in your car? In front of the TV? While running around the kitchen making lunch for your kids? It is a known fact that if you are not paying attention to your meal, your brain can make you think you are still hungry b/c you didn't FOCUS on the tastes, textures, satisfaction of your food. Did you ever look down at your plate and think, "I don't even remember eating all that! How did that happen?" That is because you can actually fool your brain...those days you will without a doubt OVEReat! We don't want that. So, whatever it takes, make sure you focus on you. Maybe feed the kids, send them outside to play and sit down alone with some soft music and ENJOY your meal. It's not easy to do with kids, but turn off the TV, put the magazines away and enjoy your food. Taste it. Savor it. Your waistline will thank you.
5. Exercise will come in due time. We need to work on some other things before jumping into an all out triathlon training program. But while you are working on starting some new habits you can slip in some exercise you would never realize could add to your weight loss. The following are some fun ways to up the ante: take more trips up and down the stairs while you are cleaning, stand while folding laundry or talking on the phone (or blogging!), use a hand can opener, actually PLAY outside with your kids, walk the dog, jog to answer the phone, park at the far end of the parking lot when you go shopping. What other activities (keep it clean ladies...but, yes! you can do THAT to burn off calories, too!) can you think of that would add extra activity into your days?
Until next week! Keep good records!
Write EVERYTHING down that goes in your mouth! EVERYTHING! You'd be surprised how a bite here and a handful there will add up and completely throw off your day!
Pass this post or a link onto your friends and blog readers! The more the merrier!

The Larson's NEED YOU!

Please go to and visit ColemanScott. He and his family got devestating news yesterday regarding Coleman's cancer. PLEASE let them know you are praying for them, leave them a message. I cannot imagine hearing the words, "it's back!" after what they have been through. NO CHILD (or their families) SHOULD HAVE TO ENDURE THE HELL THAT CANCER IS! If you don't know Coleman, give yourself a treat. He is absolutely PRECIOUS! as is his twin Caden. Please watch this next video made by his mom, Peggy, listen to the words, cry and make it your mission to do SOMETHING for a kid with cancer, something for research, sign the Childhood Cancer Petition, SOMETHING! I am sick to my stomach! HELP!


I'm a Top Mommma! Click on my "red-hat kissing kid" on! See how long I can stay on the front page!! ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ OHM update and check in** coming later today... STAY TUNED! **Wanna check out the details? Head to this post for the "skinny"! JOIN US!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

I spent the night with FIVE men!

LOL! I knew THAT title would get your attention!
Kenny Chesney...
Sammy Hagar...
Keith Urban... of my readers...
and the hottest one of them all... MY HUBBY!

Good weather (although over 100 degrees), Good music and GREAT friends! AMAZING!


The OHM! (One HOT Mama!) weight loss group has begun! We have quite the following. Click on this post and put a shameless shout-out or just the link on your blog so your readers can join us. We are headed to the record books if we keep rallying new members!

So, for those of you who started last week, you should have a better idea of how many calories you were consuming and you should have chosen a GOAL weight. If you have no idea how to compute these stats, please see this link.

Tuesday we will start with STAGE 1. So, stay tuned. Anyone can join us by signing in to any one of the posts with an OHM! update in it. You can join any time, it is easy to start and you can follow along no matter what STAGE you are on.

*Remember: Before starting any weight loss/exercise program, check with your doctor.

Friday, July 18, 2008

The Spoonies have left the building!

Some people could call my house an "internet connection B&B"...some would just say we were idiots to make plans to host total strangers in our home...some would say it was an opportunity to pull a pretty hearty prank on home poor trusting souls... When IMing Mimi a week or so ago and finding out the Spoonies were thinking about hitting PA on their cross-country adventure I thought, "That would be so fun to meet them. It's like I already know them from the carepages." For those of you who do not follow the carepages or are on my blog for the first time. Bailey Spoonhower (aka SUPERBAY) is a 7 year old sweetheart who had replapsed with Rhabdomyosarcoma but was recently given news that sent a wave of cheers across the country and in the homes of the families that follow his story ( SUPERBAY). His tumor was gone! Bailey is one of those kids that you just fall in love with the minute you hear/see him. I told Mimi to grab me some SuperBay bracelets and mail them to me. She said, "What if the Spoonies could personally deliver them?" I about peed my pants. (LOL!) My oldest came downstairs to say good night and I posed the same question to him...he cried like a baby. We have been following Bailey's carepage for some time now and praying for him everyday (along with our other "cancer friends" as we like to call them) and my kids are attached to his precious personality (and his crush on Haley!)
We don't usually invite total strangers into our home "sight unseen" (as Drew calls it) but as God would have it, there was a connection I can't explain and a friendship that will last a lifetime. We have been blessed and we may have saved them a couple nights in a hotel but they have given us so much more.
Drew and Michelle are wonderful, down-to-earth, fun people. We laughed and picked on each other about the dog hair on my floor, the fact that I didn't make them corn on the cob that Alisha and Jay (cp: JohnEricBartels) sent from Maryland, the lack of Amish sightings, how I threw a used diaper in their load of laundry on accident AND THEN WASHED IT, about my busy social schedule that made them feel like their time here was limited, their severe hunger the night they arrived, the too-saucy pizza...hey, come to think of it, I think THEY did all the picking!
We are blessed to have had the SPOONIES and are just a little bit jealous that COLEMAN and CADEN (cp: ColemanScott) get them next! Have fun IOWA!! Peggy, you are in for a real TREAT!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Guess who's at OUR house...

Here's a clue!
...for those of you who read the carepages...think SUPERBAY!
We have made a Wii-addict out of Bailey!
And our adventure continues....STAY TUNED!!!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Get (the) Skinny...

Word problem:
You arrive with your mate at an all-you-can-eat buffet at 6pm on Thursday. The waiter explains that the buffet cost is $24.00 per person and tells you to head up whenever you are ready. You (alone) consume one small salad, a cup of soup, a garlic biscuit, 3 tacos, 1/2 slab of meatloaf, 2 helpings of mashed potatoes and corn slathered with gravy, one ham steak, 2 green beans, a slice of pepperoni pizza, more mashed potatoes but this time with butter, a slice of chocolate cream pie, a soup bowl FILLED with soft serve ice cream topped with hot fudge and caramel and peanuts and three diet sodas.
How many calories have you consumed and how much weight will you have to lose before your 20th class reunion the next day?
Many of you jumped right on the TEAM-WEIGHT-LOSS idea last week when I posted that I would like to lose a lump of weight before my class reunion in September. So, I decided that I would rally the troops and we could all get skinny (or healthy) together.
Having been on every diet known to man (and losing more weight than 10 men) in my 26 year dieting career - yes, this yo-yo started when I was 12 - I think I have a wealth of knowledge to share. I am an ACE at losing weight - that's why I am willing to SHOW YOU and have us in this together! My faulty gain-every-ounce-back method of maintenance should not affect those of you who are just struggling to GET IT OFF and I figure many of you may be MAINTENANCE gurus so you will come in handy to me when I drop to my goal weight! Not to mention, it is one thing to slowly put weight back on, it is another to look like a BIG DOOF across the globe.
So, here it is...Tuesdays will be our day to chit chat about our stumbling blocks, successes, failures, etc. Each week we will advertise our weekly weight loss and I will tally it up. We will keep a running tally to see how many TONS we can lose! There were an awful lot of you who responded and I am wondering if those of you who normally lurk would join the fun, we could make the record books! LOL!
So, here's what you will spend this week doing! FORGET EXERCISE - that will come. We are just going to get a hold of what we consume on a daily basis and then start making changes! I want those of you interested to go out and get yourself a calorie book, this is my favorite b/c it is cheap and it fits in every purse I own. Calorie King has a load of great resources, check it out! If you spend a lot of time online you can check out GOOGLE to help you until you get your book of choice.
Now, I want you to get yourself a small memo book that will also fit in your purse so you can keep track of everything that goes in your mouth. Sound like too much work? OK, never mind then, we will get skinny without you! Is it really too much work if it means better health, being on this planet longer and being ONE HOT MAMA?!
Use your memo book to jot down what you eat and the calorie content of everything that goes in your mouth. 9 baby carrots - 35 cals, Tootsie Pop - 60 cals, Potato - 110 cals, McDs small fries - 230 cals, Big Mac - 540 cals, Babyback ribs & Chicken @ Chili's - 1460 cals! Do this until Friday. Yes, we are starting TODAY! Why not? If you don't start today, you WON'T DO IT! Now, get crackin'! Have plans this weekend and don't know how to get nutritionals from the restaurant you will be eating at? Try - there's barely a place not listed!
Pay attention (and highlight in your memo book) to when you eat out of emotional stimuli. Boredom, anger, depression, frustration, are triggers for me and unless I am prepared with something good for me (as much as I want a BLIZZARD from DQ!), I will fail in losing the weight!
On Friday evening, tally up your previous days' calories and divide by 3 (for 3 days) to get your average caloric intake. Then, look at that number - that number is making you fat! HATE that number, choose to make a life style change!
Decide on your goal weight. Be reasonable. Not the weight you were when you got your first kiss. Not the weight you were on your wedding day. A weight that was healthy for you and easy to maintain. Never been at that weight? Check out Health A to Z to find out what numbers look good on you! Add a zero to the end of your goal weight and that is the number of calories you will need to stick to to get to that goal! Easy, huh? Nope. It won't be. But with hundreds of you supporting each other - it will be easier than going it alone!
Start planning your meals based on your goal calories on Saturday - we will check in on Tuesday with some exciting news!!!!
Now, are we in this together? If that was a resounding YEEHAA I just heard, then sign in in the comments section - email this link to all your wish-i-were-skinny friends or post a link on your blog and let's see how many we can have join us. I will add little "tidbits" at the end of each post reminding you to stay on track, inspirational quotes, etc. And I would love to highlight those of you who are KICKIN' BUTT as we trod along together, celery stick in hand!
This does NOT mean that my blog will now REVOLVE around weight loss - I will dedicate Tuesdays to that subject but the rest of MY SEMBLANCE will remain the same!
Now - we need a NAME, to solidify our commitment to ourselves, each other, etc. I will make a "button" for each of you to use on your blog as a daily reminder that we are all counting on each other to be successful!
Got it? Sign up, give me your NAME ideas, and start counting those calories! We've got a lot of work to do!

Monday, July 14, 2008

A Partial Princess's Camping Adventure...

I survived! I am home! I have done 6 loads of laundry, cleaned up the kitchen, made a couple meals, had OT with baby, played catch outside, started my D-I-E-T and vaccuumed. Now, if I had also un-dirted the pack n' play I would have fulfilled my to-do list!
It just dawned on me that I could have done a VIDEO BLOG from the reunion! That would have been cool! Kids running around screaming, me choking through the campfire smoke as I do my monologue, toasted marshmallow goo in my hair, dirt-stained clothes, no make-up, ummmmmm yeah, probably why I did not entertain that thought longer than a few seconds.
There are parts of camping that I enjoy. I truly love the stuff-your-self-silly aspect of camping. I like the fact that I did not have laundry to do or a dog to take out. I enjoyed the large pots of coffee that never ran dry (YES, I drank decaf!) and the numerous stories that were told around the campfire. I love getting re-acquainted with family we haven't seen in a year and watching the kids reconnect with their cousins!
Although, I truly look forward to this event (even though the week before I fuss and fidget over leaving the comfort of my home) every year, I am usually somewhat quickly reminded of those parts of camping that I could live the rest of my life without missing!
I absolutely hate the chance of snakes! If I think about it too much I actually do that "I think I just stepped on a crab" dance that you do at the beach! So, while I was playing with the kids and knee-deep in weeds and water throughout the weekend, I have to keep my wits about me and think happy thoughts! I dreamed of my first book deal, author visits, advance checks, giggling kids at bookstores! That kept the snakes away. Actually, the were probably peeking out from behind rocks thinking, "Look at that easy target! She has NO IDEA I am sitting right here!" Ick! I just shivered!
I don't enjoy waking up and having 60 people to greet before having my coffee. I don't know about you but when I wake up sometimes I look in the mirror and thing, "Where did my face go?" There is A face on my neck but it is not always MY face! One mornings after I go to bed with my make-up on, I look a wee bit like Marilyn Manson when I wake up. Then there are the puffy eye days and the greasy skin mornings. I laid in bed until 10am each morning we were camping. I NEVER stay in bed passed 7:30 - but I was planning my lunge to the bathroom to check my face before heading to the common area. I never quite made it. Someone always saw me and then I would think "WHO THE FREAK CARES! WE ARE CAMPING!"
I do not like being sweaty! When camping, there is a fine line between sweaty and clammy and I REALLY, REALLY HATE BOTH! I enjoy feeling the sun on my skin until the first bead of sweat breaks out then I need A/C or a nice chilled pool not a smoky campfire or a stuffy tent. When you can almost feel the layer of sticky on your skin, it's time to call it quits and head for the nearest STARBUCKS! Which is exactly what we did as soon as we left yesterday! I got everyone a decaf treat and I enjoyed the biggest VENTI, NON-FAT, ICED, DECAF CARMEL MACCHIATO ever! Well, it was the same Venti I always get but there was something about the one I had yesterday that made it WAY BETTER than any other I have ever had!
Overall it was a great weekend! Easier to tell with pictures so I will give you a glimpse into THIS princess's camping adventure...
How many snakes do you think are scoping us? *shivers*

My first years at the reunion this pavilion was NOT there. This building is what helps this princess to stay sane during this trip. There are bathroom/showers to the left, the center of the building is a commercial kitchen complete with dishwashers and above is dorm space for those of us who would rather NOT sleep with the bears in a tent that could be shred with one fell swoop of a giant clawed paw!

There's always something going on in the picnic area. This is the hub of the event! Kids are always arguing, burping, crying, tattling playing, there is always food out and the adults argue, burp, cry, tattle enjoy each other's company! Just kidding, the kids are quite behaved! LOL! So, are the adults! I just knew some of them would be reading this so I had to get that in there! ha ha!

Captain "Jack" was the mystery guest and took all the kids outta our hair on a scavenging adventure that kept them busy entertained them for almost an hour as they trekked through the wilderness in search of clues to the treasure! The clan of SCALLYWAGS after finding their treasure! A bag filled with toys! Now, Cap't Jack ranks right up there with SANTA!

In another life Capt. Jack was an art teacher and helped the kids "bling out" some s'mores sticks! It's the widdled REAL sticks that make ya feel like you are REALLY camping...add some beads and glitz and I almost forget there is not A/C! Hah! Just kidding!

That's my hubby and my youngest (he is stealth-like on the rocks) making what became known as "the pool" - however it was a far cry from MY idea of pool! There was no snackbar, relaxing music OR drinks with umbrellas!

So, all in all, it was a GREAT weekend. The throwing my lips to my kitchen floor and cranking the A/C to 60 was merely for affect! Thank God there'll be a whole year until I camp again! Good times! Good times!