Ya'll, seriously the most awesome thing just happened. My kiddo lost his first tooth! I know that all kids have teeth and they all lose them but seriously, my son is 7 and is pretty much the last of all of his friends everyone to have lost his first tooth.

Back in kindergarten he swore he had a loose tooth because 2 other friends of his had loose teeth. While their teeth were popping out, his stayed put. In first grade all the kids class pictures were lopsided with missing teeth and no matter how much I told him he had such an awesome smile, he really wanted to be snaggle-toothed.

Two months ago he had a dental appointment and they could see that his tooth was popping up right behind is baby tooth and they said not to worry, that the tooth would just pop right out. A few weeks later I could see the tooth coming up behind the baby tooth and the baby tooth was rock solid. I really got worried, I could just hear my money draining from our savings to go toward the extensive dental bills we were going to have in the future. The dentist kept telling me to not worry yet, that it was looking fine. Well, fine in my book means your baby tooth falls out before the permanent tooth comes in.

But hey what do I know, right?

A month or so ago when he said his tooth was wiggly, I grinned and said "sure it is..." while in my head I was thinking, "this kid ain't never loosing his teeth" but then.. it wiggled. Just a tad, but it was a legit wiggle.

I made a dentist appointment last week because his tooth wasn't loose and the permanent tooth was really coming in and again I freaked. We walked in and the dentist said, "Wow this is really loose!". Wait. What? When did that happen? Sure enough it was pretty loose.
The dentist once again reassured me (bless his heart, I'm sure he dreads my name) that everything was fine.

Yesterday, that tooth was super loose. And this morning, it was hanging-by-a-thread-gross-me-out-loose. When I left for the gym before dinner I kept telling my son he should just let his daddy pull his tooth out and be done with it and posted about it on Instagram:

He was having none of that.
For real am I the only one grossed out by a tooth hanging by a string?

I get home from the gym and hop in the shower. The tooth was the last thing on my mind. I get out of the shower and look at my phone only to see...

It's gone. Apparently, while I was in the shower he just up and pulled it out himself.
So it's official, he lost his first tooth. Of course the tooth fairy gave me the inside tip that she was leaving the following note that she found on a really cool website.

Ah. Another milestone hit. Another memory in life made. Another moment that makes me realize my son is growing up entirely too fast. Nothing like a tooth to make you reflect on life.

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Stress sucks. I mean we have study after study that talks about how stress is a major factor sickness and disease. But seriously, when a doctor tells you to reduce your stress do you just look at them and laugh like I do?

Seriously, like I choose to just stress out all the time?

So let’s see doc. How should I go about this?  Should I just quit my job, because that right now is a huge stress factor for me. But in doing that, it would mean we would be financially unstable which in turn could just possibly.. oh, I don’t know, maybe STRESS ME OUT?

Oh wait, maybe I should just hole my kid up in a closet and never let him participate in anything because having to work a schedule for 3 people in hopes of fitting everything in each day is stressful?

I know we all have stressors and it’s more about how we handle the stress. I work out (not like I should) which they say is a huge stress reliever but I've still got wicked TMJ to prove otherwise.

And if I ate half the chocolate that it would take to destress me, I'd then have to go to the gym 100 times over just so I didn't feel horrible about myself, thus causing... you guessed it.. more stress!

I don't know about ya'll but this stress thing is for the birds.
I just don’t get it.

So I'm thinking I'm just going to go find my comfy spot in the bed, close the door, pretend the world doesn't exist and read books until my mind is able to deal with all the real world stuff going on.

Where's my chocolate?

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Yeah, it's Monday. You know, that day where you start all your goals for the week all excited? Yeah, that's not me either. But hey, if I don't try to stay positive about it all then what am I doing it for, right?

So here's what I'm getting motivated for this week...

Health & Fitness:

  • Hitting 9 Round 4 times this week
  • Kiddo karate-chopping 2 times this week

Around the Home-front:

  • Grammie (kiddo's, not mine) staying the week with us
  • Starting my 15-minute a day cleaning schedule


  • Morning & Night prayer habit
  • Reading my scriptures daily
  • Getting prepared for the up-and-coming..... (more on this later)

Work Stuff

  • Getting through this week's portion of my project at work

Ok my pretties, let's see how I do this week!

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GRASS!! WE HAVE GRASS! First and foremost, I realize that by putting this on my H54F I have doomed myself to the "boring old married person" level of blogger, but I'm sorry ya'll, I'm excited. Do you realize how hard our HOA has been riding us about this? Sure, we've kind of put it off longer than we wanted. Sure, we kind of had an eyesore going on. Sure, I can come up with a ton more excuses of why we never got around to getting the backyard landscaping done. But guess what suckas... it's done! Ok, not really done, done. But done as in we have grass now get off our backs done!

Kiddo got to be "Sensei" for part of the Tiny Tigers class (he's in the Basic class, so these kids to him were totally babies.. which he made sure to tell me about). However, if you notice in the picture, that "tiny tiger" isn't very tiny now is he? But still, my kiddo was the oldest there and therefore must be respected as an elder. HAH!

I love that face. Our dog Lola annoys me to no end sometimes. She's like a shadow, she has to be right under your feet at all times. But then... then she looks up at you.. like that.. with those eyes... it's all good.

Rising sun trucker hats! This hat is legit. Therefore, I'm legit. Too legit to quit. Nah, I'm quitting. Right now. But my hat.. on and on and on!

There is no prouder moment when you are driving home from Barnes & Nobel and this is what is going on in your back seat. No whining about wanting his DS. No growling about how hungry he is. Just quiet beauty.
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Sorry, I'm just not blogging this week. I've got too much crazy and not enough straight jackets to keep it all together.

So pardon me, I'll be back for H54F
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I can't even communicate how glad I am it's Friday today. It's just been that kinda week.

White belt baby! My kiddo earned his white belt from Hurricanes Martial Arts this week! He took 6 weeks of classes in his after school program and decided he wanted to continue. So his first class at the dojo and after seeing that he remembered his training, he earned his white belt! I'm really excited for him about this because he's a small kid and frankly I want him to know how to defend himself. Bullies happen people, and when they do... I just pray he remembers how to whoop up on them.

To the untrained eye, this looks like.... boxes. And they are. But the white box has my refrigerator filter in it. A replacement. A replacement that was supposed to be done over a year ago. My water not only comes out of my fridge way faster but it tastes so much better again. I can't put the value on a good filter in your fridge.

That's the side of my desk with my "Hyland OnBase Application Enabler Workbook" with a fan. I was in training for 2 days this week, it's a virtual training class so I was sitting in my office with my headphones on listening to a GoTo Meeting training class. My office is a little hole in the basement (for reals) and when my door is closed it gets super stuffy. My boss saved the day (both of them) by lending me the fan that he was borrowing. I may have to keep it. I turn it on and close my eyes and pretend it's an ocean breeze. Hey, whatever you gotta do man.

I've been studying my scriptures! I read them online from the LDS.org website so I can mark them up with notes and highlights (which transfers over to my phone app as well) and then I journal in my planner. But I also have added the "2 Hour Book of Mormon" and that sucker as been awesome! I read the chapter in there first, get a really good understanding of what the chapter means, then read it in the scriptures and it all falls together so much more understandably!

Almond Joy Pieces. 'Nuff said (oh.. it's a diet killer for sure though)

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This was totally me last Tuesday. Only I'm not the Rock and the Bishop didn't call some random kid in my backseat. Mine came in the form of an email from the 2nd Councilor. But the reaction.. totally the same.

And no lie. I react that way EVERY. SINGLE. TIME.

To make matters worse. When I received the email on Tuesday he had asked if I was free to meet Wednesday night. I wasn't. Normally, I would have broken any other plans I had (hey priorities people!) but I had plans to go see a friend who is going through a really rough spot with a family medical situation and that totally trumps this meeting request (at least I think so).

So, it was put off until Sunday morning. 8:40 in the Bishop's office. Talk about a way to start your Sabbath! But we had our meeting and it went well (as usual) and now I can sit back and relax.



Oh.. you want to know what the meeting was about?

Yeah, you'll have to wait on that.... (oh I'm mean aren't I!)

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This year our blueberry bushes were popping with berries so I knew what I needed to do. Blueberry jam! I found the recipe on Brown Eyed Baker's website - it's an adapted version of the Ball Complete Book of  Home Preserving. I made 9 jars in about 2.5 hours.

Always start off by getting your jars cleaned and heated and by heating your lids. Wash your lids and jars in hot soapy water. Then move them to a boiling water bath for ten minutes to sterilize. Remove jars from the water bath, but leave the lids in the hot water until you’re ready to use them to ensure they don’t come in contact with anything before you seal your jars. Or you can use my shortcut. Put them in your dishwasher, it sterilizes everything and keeps them hot. Leave the dishwasher closed and pull out one jar and one lid at a time as you're filling them.

mish-mashed berries!
I mashed about 7 cups of fresh blueberries. This is the worst part, I never feel like I really mash it enough. Plus the berries get stuck in my masher (I'm thinking I need one of the metal zig-zag mashers instead of the one with holes).

I think you just mash until it's the consistency that you want. I like a little more chunky than straight juicy.
Add 4 tablespoons of lemon juice to your mashed berries. I juiced lemons to use but I'm sure you can use the bottled lemon juice, too.

fresh squeezed lemon juice (about 2)
Just a note, you can't taste the lemon juice in the jam afterwards so don't worry. You add the lemon juice to give it acid so the gel can form.

hey suga suga!

 Next comes the sugar. Don't freak out but you add 7 cups of sugar. It sounds like a lot, and it is.. so if you want a low sugar or a sugar substitute it may alter the recipe. You can use Splenda or something or you an completely remove the sugar and substitute it with other things like juice. I'm going to be honest here. I made sugar-free strawberry jam and I really disliked it.

I'm sure everyone has their taste but it just wasn't for me.

So add your sugar or sugar substitute and put it on high heat and stir it constantly until it's at a roaring boil. Be careful though, I always tend to have it boil over as soon as I stop stirring for even a seconds.

2 little pouches!
 After the boiling is going good, add 2 packages (3 oz each) of liquid pectin. Pectin is naturally found in a lot of fruit, but in some - like blueberries - it's not enough to do it's job. Basically, it's used for thickening or creating the gel in the jam.

Add the pectin and stir while it boils for 1 minute. Then remove it all from heat and start canning!

This is my favorite part. So, start with your first jar and fill it. I love my funnel for filling it (it's a wide mouth funnel) because it makes it so much less messy. Fill the jars and leave about a 1/4th inch head (that's the empty space at the top). Wipe the rim with a clean cloth to clean it before putting the lid on. Then add the ring and tighten. Don't over tighten it, you just want it hand tightened. Add them to your water bath. Bring your water bath to a boil for 10 minutes then remove the water bath from heat and let it sit for about 5 minutes.
a bathing they will go

Once your five minutes are up, remove your jars from the water bath but try not to tilt the jar (I have trusty little tools that help me do this). Place them on a towel or another heat resistant surface and let them sit for 24 hours. Try to put it in an area that isn't breezy and the jars won't get bothered or bumped.


After 24 hours... enjoy!  These will store for up to a year!

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See anything missing? Like pictures maybe? This is what happens when my phone battery is acting up and I'm having to basically keep my phone tethered to a charger.

I've been working on my fitness schedule and I'm about to implement a no-joke-hardcore-get-er-done schedule. I'm talking, my workouts are going on my calendar and I'm not rescheduling them. It's ON!
Plus, I got a pair of cute pink mini 9 round gloves to hang in my swagger wagon so.. it's totes ON!

Hair time! Got my hair did. That makes the week awesome by default.

I'm so grateful for the people in my life. My family. My church family. My friends. In the past week I've seen loved ones from all of these areas need love, help and friendship and it's there. I know some amazing people and I hope that if I can ever be there for them as I've seen them do for others that they know they can count on me. I'm thankful to have them in my life - even if we are sharing bad times together. I feel stronger knowing I have these folks in my corner.

New make up! I'm a makeup-cheapo but due to pink eye I had to throw out all of my older eye makeup (which probably was desperetly needing to go anyway) so I got to go get a little haul of new stuff and that's always fun.

I'm at Carowinds. Yeah, that's right. I'm probably swinging my frizzy-haired-sweaty-self all over The Intimidator right now (or I could be hiding out in Peanut land.. you'll never know)..

Hope you're having a great week too!

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I hate titles.
What a fun but fast weekend. Aren't they all like that? I really didn't get into much this weekend. Sometimes that's nice. Although I did have a big bout of cabin fever on Saturday night but a little drive around town cleared that up for me.

Friday my son had a friend spend the night and those are the times that it makes me wish that he had a brother or sister to interact with. For those of you who've been around long enough to have read my stories about my stillborn daughter and my difficulties with my son's pregnancy - you also know that I've basically resolved to having an only child. But I still have those moments when I do wish he had that sibling companionship.

Saturday was a blur. My parents were in town for the day and we spent the day just doing random things. Running to this store or that store or measuring their lot (they are building a house across the street from us). I happened across this video on Saturday and I think I may be the only person alive who didn't know that Brandon Flowers from The Killers is LDS. I really liked his story - for a rockstar he's go such a focus on his family. Beautiful.

Anyway, Sunday I overslept and decided to play hooky from church so I could spend the rest of the morning in my pajamas. Lately it seems no matter how much sleep I get, I'm always exhausted. This leads me into a topic that I don't think I've really talked about much on my blog.


My thyroid basically is lazy - which is called hypothyroidism. I take medication for it and the doctors say that when your thyroid levels are normal (from meds) that you shouldn't have any symptoms. I'm going to slightly disagree. Although before I was diagnosed with this there were huge symptoms - I would fall asleep after work, wake up and go to bed because I was so tired all the time. I had terrible mood swings. So bad in fact that while my husband and I were engaged he straight up pondered the idea of becoming a run away groom (kinda, I'll have to post about that later). My libido suffers (totally not getting into that) and to top it all off my hair and nails were just dry and crazy and I would work out 4 days a week and diet but still gained weight. It was terrible.

Then I got medicated. The symptoms subsided and I felt so much better. But my thyroid levels go bonkers every now and again and until I get my blood tests that show it and get my meds adjusted, I suffer a milder form of those annoying symptoms. Thanks goodness the symptoms are anything all that terrible.

But even when my levels are normal I do feel a difference. Maybe I'm blaming it on my thyroid but I can't seem to find another reason. Like now. I'm exhausted. I don't drink a lot of caffeine and haven't for at about 2 years now. But I've been tempted to bump up my caffeine intake to help out right now.

We will see. If things don't start to change here pretty soon I guess I'll make my appointment with my doctor and see what's up. But it's weird because when I was diagnosed initially with hypothyroidism (back in 2000) I hadn't ever heard of anything like it and I didn't know anyone with it. Since that time, my father and my cousin were both diagnosed with it. It seems to be a much more common thing now and it makes me wonder why. I always wonder if the symptoms are the same for others and any other remedies that people use.

Anyway, have a great Monday and hopefully you're not half as tired as I am!

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Gray Lake: A Novel
Gray Lake: A Novel by David Bain

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I'm not sure how to review this. I found myself getting caught up in the story during certain chapters. I felt like I spent the first 150 pages asking myself "what is going on here? who is this talking about again?" So I felt a little disconnected from the story until half way through the book. I felt like I was on that upward chug of a roller coaster, looking over the side going, where am I? What's going to happen?

But by then the story really shifted shapes and that's where you felt like you were coming down the big hill, soaring into the story but still being slung left and right off and on the track. Some very unexpectedness happened all over the book.

For 749 (I think) pages, it seemed to fly by.

View all my reviews

Happy 5th of July! It's been super soggy (downright floody in some places) here in the South but it was still nice to get to celebrate Independence Day with my family!

America. No brainer. I'm seriously mushy when it comes to my country. Although we didn't really go all out this year doing the BBQ (which would have been rained out) or the party (which would have been wet) I spent the day with my husband and son and had a chance to remember what it's really all about. I'm thankful for our freedoms and for my family.

Pink eye. Hence, me wearing my glasses all week. Yeah. Not really a highlight but one I just couldn't possibly ignore. I get pink eye and strep throat more than any other human I know. It's a gift really, I'm just keeping all you from getting it by taking the burden upon myself. You're welcome. I'll take donations for my suffering thanks.

Summer Camp! My son attends summer camp every week day. He loves it. That's him being a ninja at a local hibachi place they went for lunch. A lot of his friends from his school goes to the same camp. They do fun things at least 3 days out of the week. At least! They swim at least once a week, either at a local state park lake or at the waterpark.
I want to go to summer camp. Please?

Car fresheners. Particularly this Yankee Candle Pineapple Cilantro one. It's awesome, I love the fragrance. Yes, it's overpowering at first, enough so that I had a headache every time I got in my van for the first 2 days. But seriously, once it calms down, it's fresh-o-fab smelling. Plus, my van usually smells like sweat, dirt or old chicken nuggets so this is a huge upgrade.

This really happened last Saturday, like I told ya'll. But it had to make my list. I loved my girls road trip to Atlanta for some Temple time, Cheesecake Factory and IKEA. Best therapy ever.

Here's hoping that your week has been great and that it's a great start to an awesome weekend!

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I cry when I hear the national anthem. I'm grateful to be an American. We are a beautiful county and I'm so proud to call this country my home.

May your day be blessed, may your family be close and may we all know what an awesome country we live in.

Now, if you feel like listening to a couple songs that I love about our country, feel free to click below!

You can't go wrong with this song. It still brings tears to my eyes.

This isn't a traditional patriotic song but it's absolutely beautiful

You can never have enough Lynyrd Skynyrd.

I'm not a Miley Fan but I love this song. But you didn't hear me say that.

Oh I love Carrie.

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So last weekend I had the chance to spend an entire Saturday with a really awesome friend of mine. We took a mini road trip down to the ATL (Atlanta) and I couldn't have asked for a more fun time!

I hit the road at 5:30 on Saturday morning so I could make the obligatory stop at QT for some road-trippin' snacks (no I didn't get a slushy but it was tempting!). I grabbed my girl, Christina at 6 and we were off! The trip takes about 2.5 hours and the traffic was easy so we pulled into our first stop right on time! Plus, when you talk as much as I do in a car (sorry Christina if I talked your ear off), travel seems fast. But it was a great time getting to talk about all those things that you just don't think to talk about unless your trapped within 3 feet of someone else for 2+ hours. Bonding right?

Us! (She's going to tell me she hates her picture but I love it)
First stop... Atlanta Georgia LDS Temple. I posted pictures earlier this year from when my parents, my Aunt and I visited this Temple - but at that point I couldn't go in so we only strolled through the gardens. This time, I was going through it baby! We were able to go to a morning session and then stop by the LDS Distribution Center that's located there. This is a special store that sells all kind of Mormony things that you can't get from  regular stores. Mostly clothing items and such. So of course when we walk in I spot Wendy! (Remember she's the lady from the post earlier) and I as I was mumbling something like "Hi Wendy, do you remember me..." she ran up and gave me a hug! That is so special because this lady has to see at least a hundred or more people a day. I'm so glad she remembered me! Introductions were made between her and my friend and she went right to helping us out. I love Wendy. You will love Wendy too if you ever meet her.

So once we were done there it was lunch time. I would say figuring out a place to go was difficult but um, Cheesecake Factory at Perimeter Mall, no question. Luckily, our driving snacks were small because I ate enough for a small country. Which is okay, because we were about to walk it off.

Because there ain't no better place to walk off a big, yummy, cheesecake than at IKEA! This was my first time there and talk about overwhelming! My head was on a swivel the entire time! I'm pretty sure I could have spent all day walking through there and still not see everything. I picked up a few decor things here and there which I'll post about later (except my salad spinner, it's neither decor nor necessary to fill you in on). I can totally see myself coming back - although honestly a lot of the furniture stuff isn't my style, I'm just more of an old-world kind of girl, but gosh were there SO many little things I wanted to add around my house.

By then it was closing in on evening and we still had to drive back so we hopped back in the car and drove home! It was 8ish before I walked into my house and let me just say I was exhausted! But super fun day and can't wait to do it again!

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I refuse to be a blogger who only blogs about link ups.

I refuse to be a blogger who does sponsored posts, sells ad space or does give-aways.
There's a caveat to this, I love linking to other blogs and I do that FOR REE. Also I do occasionally give something away when I can, but that's not what this blog is for.

I refuse to blog when I'm not feeling like it.

I refuse to interfere with my life to make sure I can get a blog post up. Sorry.

I refuse to let my blog control my schedule.

Ok. So that's a lot of stuff about my blog I just won't do. I hope you don't mind but I'm not into blogging for money. This is for enjoyment (hopefully yours as much as mine) so when I don't post every day, it's okay. See, if it's okay for me it's okay for you!

I just wanted to let ya'll know where my blogging lines (I just sang Blurred Lines in my head) are. I'm not dead but thank you for the emails of concern, I didn't realize that my absence really would go noticed. But since it has I just wanted to let you know my schedule! Or lack there of!

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