2/12/2012 UPDATE: So here's the thing. Hubby & I are getting a divorce. I'm not advised to blog during this time so... Still on hold here. Will blog again when I can, I miss it so dearly. :)
I can still be reached via email: theunexpectedworldofmommyhood@gmail.com Thanks everyone for your prayers and support at this time. The going is tough, but I am tougher and know a better future is waiting. ~ Meg :)

9/26/2011 UPDATE: My blog is "on hold" for a little bit... there is A LOT going on around here {so there are no worries, everyone is healthy!} and I'm really just not ready to blog about it. I will be back. Thanks for understanding!! :)

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Hallmark Giveaway at The Paper Mama!

Giveaway over at The Paper Mama for a $50 Hallmark gift certificate. Go there, participate, and you might win!! Or don't ~ the rest of us will have a better chance! Ha! ;)

The Paper Mama

Wee Bit of Me Wednesday ~ November 17th

I've never done Wee Bit of Me Wednesdays. And it's Thursday, technically.
But I'm awake. And I feel like writing. So here goes!

{one} what time do you normally wake up?
6:30am. it starts with a rustle. my eyes are closed but i'm awake. i mildly panic & start to worry that i won't be able to fall back asleep (anxiety issues i cannot explain, it really stinks!). then i have to pee. so i creep into the hallway and into the bathroom, praying to the Lord that my children aren't roused because of my getting up, and i creep back into bed and I try desperately (never succeeding) to fall back asleep... inevitably, someone is yelling through their door by 7am "Mommy Daddy I awake!" {bang, kick, bang, banging on the door until we come and get them}. it's really lovely waking up in the morning around here. ;) Sometimes though, Hubby & I will switch off waking up early/sleeping in. We're good like that.

{two} do you have a go-to song for karaoke?
i do not karaoke. if i did, it would be led zeppelin.

okay. okay. i can remember karaoke-ing one time. on a cruise ship. we sang 'seasons of love' from RENT. and i rocked the **** out the high notes. i did.

{three} if you could only see black and white except for one color, what color would you choose to see?
green. my favorite.

{four} what color best matches your personality? green!

{five} if you could choose one meal to cook better than anyone else, what would it be?
thanksgiving meal.

{six} how many keys do you have on your key ring?
too many!

{seven} do you give your pets birthday/christmas gifts?
not always. i try to remember to buy extra treats or some catnip.

{eight} when your plate has different foods on it, do you mix or not?
sure! it all ends up in the same place! And while we're talking about eating habits ~ i have a very strange habit of arranging a "last bite" from my plate. it is normally comprised of the yummiest looking bits of the meal/salad/dish, etc ... and it's totally a really weird habit that my husband & bestest-friend-ever noticed long before i even knew i was doing it. I am also a very slow eater.

{nine} if you could hire someone to do one thing for you all the time, what would it be?
laundry/wrangling our clothes issue in the house! between all of my clothes and all the little girls clothes in the house... it's really getting to be a problem cleaning & storing & organizing everything!

{ten} when flying, do you prefer the window or aisle seat?
any seat in which i can swallow large amounts of heavy sedatives to calm my nerves. i lost TEN POUNDS (!!!!) from anxiety caused over being nervous about flying to FLA*** for a weekend trip i was taking with my mom & sisters last month. TEN. at this rate, i oughta book at trip to europe and be done with this residual baby weight forever! ;)

Link up your Wee Bit of Me Wednesday here!

*** I totally dig the days of yore, when state abbreviations were three letters. Just sayin'! ***

Write a Post for 50 Free Holiday Cards from Shutterfly

Want to know how you can earn 50 free Holiday Cards from Shutterfly???
Seriously, it's SO EASY!!! You'll love it! I know you will! And I'm passing this on because well... I love free stuff. And I'm pretty sure you do, too!

Follow this link. And then follow the directions! They'll send you a link via email to another submission form (and directions on what to include in your post) where you will enter a link to your post about the cards.
You can read my post about Shutterfly's Holiday Cards here. They sent me a code for 50 free cards within a few days! I don't know if the offer is still going on but it's worth a shot! :)
Good Luck!

Monday, November 15, 2010

I Heart Faces Photo Challenge ~ Silhouette

My My, it's been a while! I'm posting tonight for the I Heart Faces "Silhouette" challenge. I'm excited because I already have a photo. It's from Halloween, so it's current enough that I don't feel like I'm pulling from the archives. Lord, it's still on my camera! All the Room Moms for our preschool class wore witch hats to the class party. It was unintentional on all our parts to be matching and I was able to snap a great shot of the group leaving the church basement. I think it totally looks like we're leaving our underground lair and heading out for a broom ride. :)
(this looks fuzzy on my Edit Post page... hope it doesn't when i post it!)

Share your Silhouette pictures at I Heart Faces. Hopefully I'll be doing some more posting this week and getting back into the swing of things! :)

Monday, November 8, 2010

Why, hello there!

Sorry I've been amiss this week! We just decided we're finally super-serious about listing our house. There is this house we found that is for sale. And the yard is like... a dream! And it's a five minute walk to the girls' school ~ through backyards. We don't even have to get on a sidewalk! The house isn't perfect (it would need lots of work). This probably isn't the house for us, but we've been inspired to sell our house so we can really start looking for a new one. (We're strict on adhereing to a one-mortgage-policy.) So we've been packing things up all week to remove any clutter (we've still got so much to get out of here!) and cleaning things, etc. Needless to say I've been busy. And tired by the time the kids are in bed.

I just wanted to say thanks to those of you who read and keep up on following this here little blog. I hope to find time this week to play catch-up on some photo challenges and contests... and of course, check out everything you all have been up to! :)

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

I Heart Starbucks... but I Dislike Their New Drink-Making Guidelines!

(I've been known to write open letters to companies on my other blog if I disagree with a company's business practices, mainly when they've screwed me ~coughexpediacough~, or sometimes if I really love their services ~POTTERYBARNKIDS! This follows the first. I disagree with the new drink-making guidelines at Starbucks. Not of huge issue really in the grande (ba-dum ching!) scheme of things but sometimes it feels good to get the words out there! And maybe "Mr. Starbucks" will read this and change things back!)

Dear Starbucks,

My name is Meg. I am a Gold Level Rewards Cardholder. I love Starbucks coffee!! I've been a loyal customer since the time I was a junior in high school (1998). That's right! I've been drinking Starbucks exclusively for 12 years. Okay, well one time I tried a to-remain-unnamed-but-they're-popular-CoffeeBrand and I just really didn't like it. I've never looked the direction of a different coffee bean since. Even walking into a Starbucks store and smelling the delicious aroma of your coffee makes me smile. I walk in and... it's like... I've arrived. My husband swears I'm a different person once I've had a Starbucks. He might be right!

That all being said... I really don't like the new guidelines you handed out to your employees regarding making one drink at a time. And the one where they have to heat up milk separately for each drink instead of steaming for two drinks at once. I totally get the reasoning behind your changes for making drinks. And it's not just the "food safety" reasons that I understand. Getting coffee shouldn't be a rush-rush thing; it should be relaxing. I should be able to sit back, relax, and enjoy the wait for my coffee. The made just for me, you'll make it right or fix it, personalized coffee experience. I should use that time to breathe and reflect; Or maybe just to sit in silence.

As the mother of three children under the age of three... well... silence is golden. I realize that. And the opportunity to take a "forced" break in my day to get coffee ("Mommy Coffee Place", as my girls call it when they come with me or we drive past it!) really is needed somedays. But as the mother of three children under the age of three & the wife of a man who needs to get to work in the mornings ~ well, I really used to relish that I could sneak out of my house for a quick 15 minute round-trip excursion to "Mommy Coffee Place" and jolt myself with the sweet nectar of my life that is a Starbucks Grande (somtimes with an extra shot) Cappuccino Bone Bone Bone Dry with a tiny bit of Caramel Drizzle on top (or an Iced Triple Tall Caramel Machiatto on hot days), while still allowing my husband to leave for work on time. And without having to wake up extra early just for the excursion.

With the new rules in place, I'm finding my "quick" trip is now 30 minutes most days. Today it took me 40 minutes to get coffee!! It takes 6 minutes to drive to the Starbucks by my house and 8 minutes to get back. That's 26 minutes in the drive-thru at Starbucks. If I didn't really "need" coffee this morning ~ and if I didn't love my Starbucks so much ~ I totally would have left. I also know that you changed your rules, so I did patiently wait. (I don't think my wait would have been much different had I gone inside.)

This is just an open letter stating my opinion for the new drink making guidelines you've passed on to your stores. I'm not going to stop drinking Starbucks over it. I probably won't say anything publically about it again unless I'm contacted by your company. I love Starbucks, I just wish it didn't take as long for us to get our coffees now! That is all.

I do have to say another positive thing before I close this letter. I REALLY LOVE that you're now doing a Rewards program. Hopefully it will continue to be awesome (with the free drink every 15 stars, hook-ups on drink preferences, my really cool gold card, etc).

Thanks for keeping me awake and alert for the last 12 years ~ I don't know where I'd be without you! (Probably a little richer. Ha ha ha.)

Most sincerely and with warmest regards,

Mommy-Blogger, President of SFL ~Starbucks For Life {fistpump in the air}

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Shutterfly is Making My Holiday EASY PEASY! :)

The Holiday Season is upon us. Dun dun dun... oh wait. It's probably not going to be that scary, thankyouverymuch, Shutterfly.

See, they have these really fantastic holiday cards and well, you really should head on over there to see them yourself! They've got folded ones, flat ones, ones with lots of pictures, ones with one picture, black & whites, ones with color! It's not just holiday cards either; they've got invitations, too! And you can make calendars so you can enjoy your pictures all year long!
It really is pretty neat ~ and for someone like me who has little time to make Christmas cardsanymore (and who thrives on a digital world), well it's a lifesaver! I'm finally going to give in and order Christmas cards this year (from Shutterfly). I usually craft ours from scratch ~ but it always ends up with me in a tizzy trying to make everything "look nice" and get in the mail on time. Shutterfly will leave me with a hassle-free holiday! (Well, at least the Christmas card part!)

I haven't made a final decision. But I really like these folded ones. And I'll tell you why!

I think the monogram on this one below looks really smart, and I like the floral print in the middle box. It makes me think of the word Baroque & of things that are French. And I like that! I have three kids... so the three picture blocks appeal to me. These colors are fantastic, too! Our third daughter was born in December and her nursery is actually a combination of green & red ~ similar to the green & red shown on this card! Such a lovely winter combination with colors other than white & blue! I love this one. But my only reserve about it is that I can't change the "Happy Holidays" part. I'm a "Merry Christmas" kind of person.
I also really liked this card (below). It's simple. Swirly like a winter snow ~ appropriate to send to friends & family of all religions and traditions. And Classically Christmas! :) I wonder if it glitters?

My favorite folded card though, is this one (below). And if I decide to use a folded card, I'm totally going with this one! I'm going to use a picture from the apple farm that my sister took of my girls, for the main photo. They're sitting in front of a haystack & I dressed them all in red outfits... so they coordinate. Hey, it helps to plan ahead for pictures!! (Apple Farm & Pumpkin Farm outings are the perfect place to snap a great Christmas card photo!)
Each girl will get her own picture along the bottom. I don't include me or my husband in our cards ~ just the kids! :) I love this card! The collage part is fantastic ~ I'll get to show of several pictures of my girls. I don't know what I'll write inside ~ something along the lines of "May Your Christmas be Blessed & Your New Year the Best". I'll probably change the font to something a little more scripty if I can, for the inside. This will definitely be the card I pick if I go with a folded card.
I say "IF" because... well.... there's always something great about a flat card, too. Especially ones with scalloped borders!! (I'd love to put a scalloped border on... everything!) Like these ones:
(Above.) I was saying this earlier, how red & green go so well together! This green is pretty perfect. Simply divine! I really like that the red is more of a crimson red, than classic christmas red. It's just so cute! :) And I like that the message can be personalized (and I won't have to hand sign EVERY card)!!! :) (Sidenote: How cute is that kid on the left? I just want to squeeze those cheeks!)
This last one is cute, too. I like it better than the first flat card except that the pictures aren't very equal. I still might go with it though ~ we didn't do birth announcements (I should have had Shutterfly do them!) for our most recent born so this Christmas card is kind of like her introduction, so she could have the big picture! This flat card goes along with the one above in color & general style. But it's portrait-layout, instead of landscape-layout. A matter of opinion really. I really like the thick red band around the center, and the font that 'Merry Christmas' is written in.

Decisions decisions. I do have time to decide, I know. Shutterfly is offering 20% off all holiday cards! So maybe I'll buy my cards early this year and have everything ready to mail by Dec 1st! Go to http://www.shutterfly.com/ and check out all their awesome holiday cards, invitations, announcements, and more! :)

Happy Holiday Carding! :)

If you would also love to receive 50 free holiday cards from Shutterfly, click on this link!

(I TWEETED THIS @ http://twitter.com/superfab912 ~ You can tweet this, too: 50 free holiday cards from Shutterfly http://bit.ly/sfly2010 #SFLY )

Monday, November 1, 2010


Historically, I have been unable to capture a good shot from Halloween. Pictures typically come out blurred and most often the subjects have turned their face (or stopped smiling) by the time my shutter has clicked. It's sad, and terribly frustrating for me. :)

Alas, this year was like all others. Filled with blurred pictures ~ but I did mangage to snap a few cute ones! These are from the girls' Halloween party at school. I'll upload some from our Trick or Treating adventure later today (or tomorrow as time will likely not allow me today to do this). I've got a world of editing to do from the school party and tons of uploading to do at Shutterfly today. (I'm taking advantage of a sweet email offer for 101 free pics. I don't have a code for that, if you're signed up at Shutterfly you probably saw it in your email yesterday!)

That all said. Here's a couple from the party I promised to post. J is a ghost, M is a "pIIIIder" (spider, lol). You can't really see the costumes as great in these pictures (and they're not wearing their official ghost and spider hats... There are more from the actual Halloween night I'll post later.