Summer Lovin'

Here we are at the end of summer already. It's going way too fast! This has been a summer of unusual weather and lots of craziness and laziness and even a little travel involved. I thought I would share several things that I/we have been enjoying this summer. So here they are in no particular order:

J.Crew Chino Shorts
Source: J. Crew

The J.Crew Chino shorts with the 7 inch inseam are the perfect length for me. I know there are many who have been wearing them for years but this is my first time and I am thrilled! The fit is great and unlike all the other companies you get more than 2 length choices and the choice of colors is great too. I bought all of the colors above and I will definitely be sure to check out the new colors each year to add to my summer wardrobe.

Customer Service Praise:
I also want to add praise for the J.Crew online customer service too. When I originally ordered my shorts I did so after trying on the 5 inch inseam style in the store and since they seemed snug I went one size up. It was only 2 weeks before my trip that they arrived and I discovered they were too big. I was in a panic about not having any shorts to take to Florida with me. The customer service informed me it would take two weeks to get a reorder.

I explained to Samantha (the customer service rep) that I was leaving for a trip in just over a week and not only did she place my reorder matching the original sale price that I paid but she also gave me 3 day shipping at no extra cost to make sure that I received them in time. I was shocked that she went to so much trouble to help me out when most companies would have just said "I'm sorry all I can do is place the reorder and maybe they will get there in time". Needless to say that I will definitely do more shopping at J.Crew.com after getting such good customer service.

Vintage V-neck Tees

This has been my standard summer look this year. I know not very exciting but cool & comfortable. I love a good v-neck tee any other neckline make me crazy when it touches my neck. I know...I have issues let's just over look those shall we. The ones I've been wearing this summer are the Mossimo Supply Co Textured tee from Target and Women's Vintage tee from Old Navy. They have a vintage look to them, there are many colors to choose from and they are very comfortable. I wear them with shorts, jeans, skirts, etc.

Nail Polish

I keep my toenails painted year around so I guess this really isn't a summer lovin' item but I have found a couple of new favorite colors for summertime. OPI Purple with a Purpose - purple with a bit of shimmer (you know the Ace Hardware paint commercial where the woman says I want a purple but not a purple more like a purrrple...well this is it!) and OPI Teal the Cows Come Home - metallic teal blue.

Body Butter

I have been using the Body Shop brand on my feet. So far I've tried the Coconut, Mango, and Chocomania. They all smell so scrumptious and almost edible. It also seems to be very moisturizing if you have really dry skin. I have not tried it anywhere other than my feet because these are very fragrant so I don't want it on my hands all the time and I don't like heavy moisturizers on my body. My feet are so dry and regular lotion does not do anything for them so I do need the extra moisture on them.

Summer Television

Source: USA Network

Hubby and I have been watching this since the pilot episode; unfortunately I think there is only 2 episodes left. We are loving it and hate to see it come to an end. It is full of intrigue and suspicion and all kinds of unexpected twists & turns. We are really hoping that this isn't a one season show.

What have been your summer loves?


Home Schooling Part Zwei (Two)

So we have made the decision to try another year of home schooling with our youngest child. This is our extremely ADHD child who at 8 looked at us and said "I don't want to take my focus pills anymore because they make me feel sad ALL the time". What do you say to your child when they come to you in a very reasonable manner and state very clearly why they want to stop taking medication? Well in our case we said if you stop taking them you will have to do school at home because you cannot be in a classroom causing disruptions of other children. And that is what we did last year.

It definitely wasn't an easy decision for any of us. Him because he had to leave behind all of his friends and me because I knew that I was going to be at home with him ALL the time. Trust me when I tell you that being with someone who cannot sit still and cannot stop talking all day every day can be VERY tiring. But let me tell you what we did get...a kid who is funny and very animated when he tells you about something, a kid think clearly and LAUGH and SMILE many times a day!!

So here we are getting ready to start year 2 of home schooling. I will be teaching my child 6th grade school work. It has been a LONG time since 6th grade for this girl and I discovered last year that I am NOT smarter than a 5th grader so I can only image what this year is going to bring.

I think I have finally decided on what our curriculum for this school year will be after much research and hand wringing.

MATH: Teaching Textbook 7
LANGUAGE ARTS: Analytical Grammar, Wordly Wise 6, ESP Writing Skills (writing, cursive writing for left handed, and keyboarding skills)
SCIENCE: Holt Science - Physical Science
HISTORY: Harcourt Horizons - World History
FOREIGN LANGUAGE: Rosetta Stone German


Firmoo Review

Recently I was contacted by Firmoo and asked to do a review of their glasses. Thankfully I still have 20/20 vision so I was able to choose sunglasses in place of the regular glasses. I received the sunglasses last week when we unfortunately had rain & snow so I wasn't able to try them in actual sunlight until this past week.

Ordering was simple and considering that they shipped from overseas they arrived surprising fast. There are lots of styles to choose from and new customers can receive their first pair for shipping only.

They have sunglasses and prescription glasses which you can also have turned into sunglasses. You can choose your lens color and the amount of tint that you want applied.

Everything arrived in good condition. In addition to the sunglasses I also received a nice hard case, a soft pouch, a cleaning cloth, and a screwdriver key ring with extra screws. In my opinion the hard case is just as nice as the hard case that came with my expensive sunglasses.

The glasses seem to be of good quality and fit well but I've only had them a little while so I can't tell you how well they hold up yet. I chose the brown tint at 80% because I like my sunglasses to be very dark. The only thing I don't like about the ones I received is that the lenses are not polarized and they change the color of what you are seeing. My expensive sunglasses are polarized and so they do not change the colors of everything & have a little less distortion in different areas of the lens.

These will be a great pair to have as an extra pair to keep in my hubby's car. If you are on a budget or want to have several different pairs in different styles or colors these would be a good budget option. Check out the information about getting your first pair for shipping only at Firmoo.


Friendships or Lack Thereof

Today I took a few minutes in the reading room (also known as the master bathroom in my house) to read the newest Redbook magazine. The article about Kellie Pickler shaving her head made me sad. If you haven't read it you can find it here - What Kellie Pickler Learned From Being Bald.

And it wasn't that she shaved her head or even the reason for why that made me sad. Yes I know she isn't the first person to do something like this for a friend but it is still such a sweet gesture. This story made me have to face again that I have no one that would drop everything for me or that would love me enough to go to this kind of extreme gesture of love and kindness. 

I'm sure that my friends care about me but never in my life have I felt the kind of friendship that I hear others speak of when they talk about their BFF. I have definitely tried to find that one special girlfriend and at the age of 45 I cannot think of one person that I could call and know that they would drop everything for me. What exactly does that say about me as a person?

Not sure if I should take it as a sign that after reading that article I happened to have the Katie Couric show on (not a show I normally watch) and her whole show was talking about friendships.  It just added to the sad thoughts about this subject and how it is something that I am very much lacking in my life.

As with normal life I grew away from my school friendships after graduation and moving away from my hometown. Although we have reconnected with one another after many years thanks to Facebook. I didn't attend college so I don't have those friendships that most people obtain that tend to last a lifetime. And with the many moves that I have made over the years being married to a military man it hasn't afforded me time to nurture friendships the way they need. I have people here locally that I consider friends but not any that I would call a best friend or that I know without a shadow of a doubt that I could count on no matter what comes along in my life. My online friends are great to chat with but it isn't the same as being able to do lunch or go shopping with your BFF.

At this time in my life I am really craving that kind of relationship and I'm not sure even how to begin to find it and make it happen.  So how do I go about changing this and finding that one person to have in my life?


Lack of Style and Why

After moving to Georgia I gained some a lot of weight. Sixty pounds worth and on my 5'6" medium-build frame that is a huge amount. It didn't give me a lot of choices for cute and stylish clothes. I started wearing pant suits...PANT SUITS!?! Stuff that only a grandmother might wear. What was I thinking!?! It was not pretty and what's worth is NO one stopped me from doing it!

I have been trying off and on for the last 2 years to find  me again. Unfortunately at 45 it is not an easy thing to do because there are so many things that I can no longer wear because I am too mature for them.

 Four Thousand, Four Hundred Seventy-One (4471) days - that is approximately how many days I have missed out on wearing cute & stylist clothes. Why you might ask? I have no idea. Well something happened 15 years ago when we moved from Virginia  to Georgia. I wish I knew what it was that happened but to this day I have no clue why this happened.

I am trying to figure out what my style is and have started working on leaning how to dress myself after a lot of years  in sweat & yoga pants.


Must Read Monday: Elemental Mysteries Book series

A friend of mine (thanks Janice!) recently recommended this series of books from Elizabeth Hunter. I LOVED them all! Yes they are about vampires so if you don't like the paranormal genre then these are not for you. I am one of those book lovers that will read any genre, well any except sci-fi. There is a whole lot of vampire love and a little mystery in these. Each of the characters in this series just grabs hold of you and draws you in to the story. Once I got started with each one of them I could not put them down. They are each available in paperback and on Kindle as well as on Nook.

Book 1: A Hidden Fire is the first in the series and is free for Kindle right now. Giovanni a 500 year old vampire meets Beatrice the 21 year old college student/library worker. They quickly become enchanted with one another but Giovanni pulls back and disappears because he believes that she needs to live her life before being tied down to his life.

You will learn about B's father and how she thought he was dead. You will meet Tenzin and Carwyn who are Gio's oldest friends. Carwyn always makes me smile.

Yes it does sound similar to Twilight but I promise that this story is so much better. I love that even though B is drawn to Gio she does not turn into some simpering idiot who immediately wants to be turned.

Book 2: This Same Earth tells how Beatrice was able to move on with life and find someone to love after she moves to CA with the exception of Gio sending her plane tickets to his home in South America once a year. Even though for 5 years she does not see him, he draws her back to his home every year.

When he finally appears after 5 years B is pissed and it takes a lot o work Gio's part for her to forgive him and fall in love all over again. You learn about Lorenzo who is Gio's "son".

As with the first book I really like that B didn't just fall into Giovanni's arms like nothing ever happened. She was strong and with a mind of her own. She made him work for her love and affections.

Book 3: The Force of Wind takes place in China and in it you will read about how Gio and B along Tenzin and Baojia search for B's father Stephen and the mystery surrounding him and one of Gio's books from his sires library.

This is where Beatrice is finally turned into a vampire and you find out what happens with her father. Along with more about Lorenzo.

Book 4: A Fall of Water takes place in Rome and has many twists to the story but it was the perfect way to end this series about Giovanni and Beatrice's love.


Definitely Not Living Life to the Fullest!

Fifteen years ago I gave up on me and I have no clue why. I was 30 years old. My oldest was 4 at the time and I convinced the hubby that it would be a fabulous idea to move to Kingsland, Georgia. We had only been stationed in Virginia for 2 years at the time. Moving put us closer to my mom and my grandparents because they had all moved there in the couple of years before that time. I left a job that I was really good at doing to go to an uncertainty of work. The hubby ended up staying in Virginia for a year after we purchased our home in Georgia because he had to wait for orders to be able to move.

I've been trying to figure out how I got to where I am at now mentally and physically. Is knowing how we got somewhere important so that we can change direction and get to a different place? Was it the move to small town USA, was it the year I spent working 40-50 hrs. a week at a job I hated all while trying to raise our son by myself, was it the stress of trying to make 2 house payments because we couldn't get our Virginia house sold for a year, or maybe it was all of the above. Even after 15 years I have not been able to pull myself completely out of the funk.

So what do you think causes a seemingly sane person to just all of a sudden give up on everything they have ever worked for or enjoyed and go the complete opposite direction? I went from someone who never missed a hair appointment, was thin, stylish in dress and loved to go dancing to someone who stopped wearing makeup or taking care of my skin properly, didn't do more than necessary with my hair, gained a bunch of weight and started wearing clothes that some grandmother might wear as well as no longer finding enjoyment in anything in life.

So just how does a stressed out, overweight, frumpy, uninspired, hot flash suffering, 45 year old woman rediscover who she is suppose to be and the life she is suppose to live?


Bic Soleil Savvy Razor Review

About a month or so ago I received a package of the Bic Soleil Savvy razors to try for a survey. I thought I would share here my feelings about this product but I wanted to use them for a bit before doing so. What you will get with these is 1 disposable handle and 4 cartridges. There are no cartridges sold separately for this razor. After you have used all 4 cartridges you just throw out the handle.

I do like these razors but I cannot say that they are any better at removing hair than any of the other 3-blade razors available. My feelings are that as long as the blade count is the same there really isn't a huge difference between brands other than maybe cost. I also did not seem to get nicks or cuts like I have with some other razors that I have purchased over the years and definitely have not noticed any irritation when using them either.

I also like that instead of 4 disposable handles there is only the one so that will reduce some of the trash going to the landfill. And I don't know about anyone else but I find that refillable handles seem to get gunky & gross after a while and there are too many grooves to try and clean them to my satisfaction so this definitely appeals to my OCD side for cleanliness.

Lets talk money now since that is one of my things to work on this year. According to Bic's website & the facts sheet I received these will cost about $7.49 but I did see them online for $6.97. You can definitely find packages of disposable razors for cheaper but this maybe a case of you get what you pay for. While I have purchased cheaper razors they seem to dull much faster than the ones I pay a little more to purchase. So I will end this with saying that the Bic Soleil Savvy are definitely on my purchase list for when I find them on sale or when I can find a coupon to purchase them because they work so well.


Hello 2013!!!!

I am hoping that this year is going to be vastly improved over the last year. Don't get me wrong we have been hugely blessed and appreciate every thing that we have been given. That said we have had some rough moments and I am glad to see the year end and a new one start fresh and new.

We are definitely not the type of people to make resolutions for each New Year because they don't hold water past the end of January so instead I'm going to just say that they are many things that we need to work on in 2013.

The biggest thing we are going to work on is putting an end to the chaos that our home has become by cleaning out & working on getting it decorated and looking put together. Something that I'm ashamed to admit has never happened in the 20 years that we have been together. Two apartments and 3 houses later and I have to say that I've never had one room that I was completely happy or comfortable in.

I also plan on working to find money saving ideas that work for our family. There are a lot of good ideas on the internet and in books but a lot of them just don't feel right for us at this time. But I do know that we have to work in this area and try to find workable changes that we can live with. I also need to find some ways that I can make a little extra money for us to put towards the changes that need to be taken care of with the house.

Of course like a majority of society I need to find some way of getting my eating under control and to find what works for me as an incentive to exercise. I did great in this area during the 2 years that I was studying mixed martial arts but when money issues came up and I had to stop my training I lost all motivation & drive to continue. Getting to the next belt level was a huge push for me to work hard and do classes which tells me that I need to find something that gives me the same push.

So here to hoping that everyone has a wonderful year in 2013 and is blessed beyond belief!!